DC Universe Online: LOTRO-like F2P system

Posted: September 19, 2011 in DC Universe Online
Tags: , , , , , ,

Just noticed today on my news feed from SOE that DC Universe Online (DCUO) will be going Free2Play on October.

That was fast. Just 8 months of Pay2Play system. Now they’re rolling to F2P. Just… Wow.

If you ask me, it’s kind of a nice movement from SOE (most of their games are adapting to F2P models, like Everquest 2), since the game got pretty nice reviews and was praised for having a REAL superhero feeling on it (yes, I’m looking at you Champions Online and City of Heroes…)

Of course, it’s not 100% “Free”2Play, since you have to pay for some extras. Remember The Lord of the Rings Online? Yeah. Same story.

The game will now feature three account tiers: Free, Premium and Legendary.

A system very similar to LOTRO

If you ask me, it’s similar to LOTRO account tier system.

Free is like playing an unlimited trial. You can’t trade, you only get 2 character slots, you can use the AH, but you can’t post items, you can’t trade, you get a ridiculous currency cap, limited comm. system and you can’t trade.

Did I forgot to mention that you can’t trade on Free membership?

Moving to the Premium tier, it’s kinda “expensive” compared to LOTRO’s Premium tier, because you need to buy at least $5 on cash currency. On LOTRO, you just need to buy Turbine Points (no matter how much, just buy Turbine Points) to automatically get Premium access. I used SMS payment, and I got Premium for less than $1 (I think it was less than $0.50). You can use the AH, you can only trade items (seriously?), you get voice chat, another currency cap (at least not as ridiculous as the Free cap) and more slots for chars, bank and inventory.

Legendary is similar to LOTRO’s VIP tier: You keep paying your monthly fee, and you play like if nothing happened to the system.

My honest opinion about the tier system:

What the heck were they thinking when they developed the tier system?! Sure, it’s similar to LOTRO as I stated before, but why THAT limited?!

First of all, trading. It’s IMPORTANT, no matter if you’re Free or Legendary, to trade your items for other, more amazing items.

Yes, you have a limited trade system on LOTRO: VIP and Premium allows you to send/trade money AND currency. Free only allows you to trade with gear. Same for mail system. But at least they don’t block trade feature on Free players.

Why can’t we have a currency+gear trade for Premium, leaving Free with gear-only trade? It’s a win-win thing: You still have limited features, but Free players will be able to interact with more people?

Second: Currency cap. I haven’t heard of anything like a “Currency cap removal” item on the cash shop. There’s a currency cap on Free and Premium LOTRO accounts as well, but there’s an option on the cash shop that allows you to remove the cap from all your characters on that account.

Third: Character slots. THANKS SOE FOR GIVING MORE THAN 1 SLOT! LOTRO’s main issue with Free accounts is the character factor. 1 slot for Free, 3 for Premium, 5 for VIP. Both games allows you to buy more slots, which is good, but in LOTRO’s case, where you can actually play the game without spending a single dime (taking aside the Free play limitations), you’d need at least 3 char slots, just to rush to lv 20, delete them, and start again (fastest way to “farm” free Turbine Points).

Fourth: From the looks of it, seems like you can travel across the whole game (including quests) for free, taking aside the DLC packs. Unlike LOTRO, where you need to buy “region packs” to unlock the quests inside them. Case aside, if you have a Legendary account, all DLC content will be FREE during your membership. In case you don’t renew your membership, you’ll roll back to Premium, and all the non-acquired content (DLCs) will be locked until you buy them.

I’m 100% sure I’ll take a look at DCUO when servers and client download go live and get Premium ASAP, but I really hope they work on the “Free” system, and allow players to get cash currency trough quests without having to pay a cent for it, like LOTRO, or better “benefits” without that kind of restriction.

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