SWTOR’s F2P vs Other Games’ F2P Models

Hello dear readers.  Welcome to my first featured article here at TORWars.  You may have seen this posted originally on my blog here, but after much begging and tears from Deirdre, I finally relented and said yes to being one more addition to this illustrious crew of scoundrels.  Yay me!

So, all that being said, allow me to present to you my first feature!

Today, November 15th, Star Wars: the Old Republic went Free-to-Play (aka F2P, not FTP, which is Food Transfer Protocol, where you order a pizza through the internet).  Most of the commentary I’ve seen on the transition is mostly a bit of QQ about people ‘losing’ things, the new ‘massive’ amount of restrictions, the prices of the Cartel Coins, and the Preferred Status Player (PSP) accounts, and how it all works.  However, if all you look at is only what TOR is doing, you lose sight of the fact that other games are also F2P and have their own way of doing things.

I’d like to provide an illustration and comparison to allow TOR players to realize they may actually have a better deal than they think.  Other games have gone F2P in the past or have always been F2P.  I’ll focus on three other games with a substantial player-base that made a transition, since the sheer amount of angst about F2P doesn’t tend to happen if a game was F2P to begin with.  These games I’ll compare TOR’s F2P model against are the two EverQuest franchises and Lord of the Rings Online.  EQ2 went F2P in November 2011, EQ1 just switched in March of this year, and LotRO switched in the fall of 2010.  Not too surprisingly, they’re all doing well, and LotRO’s Sapience (aka my friend Rick Heaton) once advised me that LotRO was doing better now that it was F2P than it had been doing as a subscription model.  To be fair, none of the trio of other games had a bit of a hole to dig out of in terms of PR and hemorrhaging subscribers, but their transitions seemed to go smoothly.

LotRO has pie and the Sith have cookies. See the similarities?

Now, let’s do some honest comparison about what is going on here.

All three of these games have cash or currency stores where you can buy stuff for your toons or your whole account. The two EQs have Station Cash, whereas LotRO has Turbine Points.  You can buy more mock-currency with real money, and depending on your subscription level, you can get a monthly allotment. Same basic model that TOR is going to cheerfully use (sometimes, there really is no sense in reinventing the wheel).

EQ1’s F2P comparison chart can be found here.

EQ2’s F2P comparison chart can be found here.

LotRO’s F2P comparison chart can be found here. (click on the tabs to check out the options)

TOR’s F2P comparison chart can be found here.

Let’s break this down, shall we?

  • • All four games allow players to play up to level cap for free, but there are footnotes.  EQ1 requires the purchase of at least 1 expansion to get their last 5 levels.  EQ2 and LotRO claim level cap access, but you have to buy expansions to get all of the content and higher-level areas where you can grind to the cap.  To be fair, I fully expect TOR to follow this same method whenever they have their first full-on expansion.
  • • All four games have a median level account status.  EQ1 & 2 calls theirs a ‘Silver’ subscription and they cost 5 bucks (USD) a month, LotRO’s call theirs a ‘Premium Player’, TOR has ‘Preferred Status Players’.  Both LotRO and TOR’s middle tier account are free and acquire this status if a full-on Freeper makes one purchase in the in-game store.  Additionally, TOR will grandfather all lapsed and future-lapsed subscriptions to PSP status without a purchase.
  • • LotRO is the only one that doesn’t restrict races (but then it only has 4 to start with anyway).  EQ1 and 2 allow 4 races, TOR allows 3.  The latter three games allow for the purchasing of races in their store.  And yes, generally it’s the cooler races that are locked away.
  • • EQ, EQ2, and LotRO all restrict classes to non-subscribers. EQ1 only gives you a choice of 4 classes, EQ2 lets you play 8 classes.  LotRO lets you play 7 of their 9 total as F2P (and in fact you have to buy the last 2 even as a VIP/monthly subscriber via buying an expansion).  Naturally, they restrict all the really cool ones.  TOR lets you play all 8 classes.  To be fair, there really wasn’t a way to restrict them, since it’s really 4 mirrored classes (more or less).
  • • All of the games restrict bag/vault/bank/cargo slots with varying numbers based on their games’ methodology.  EQ1 and 2 don’t allow for shared bank access unless you’re a subscriber.
  • • All of the games limit in-game currency.  LotRO has a cap removal purchase available, the two EQs do not.  TOR will have an unlock available.

And in EQII you are free to play large battle Gummie Bears. \o/

  • • All of the games offer a monthly allotment of mock/store currency for full-on subscribers. EQs 1 & 2 require an auto-pay for theirs.  There was no backdated reward for former subscribers.  LotRO offered an up-front reward for subscribers when they converted but does not require an auto-pay to keep getting their monthly allotment.  TOR’s going to reward past subscribers as long as they’re actively subscribed at the time F2P goes live, and all subscribers after F2P will get a monthly allotment of cartel coins.  BioWare has also recently stated that subscribers who are on multi-month subscriptions (3, 6, 9 months) will get a larger allotment every month than 1-month subs.
  • • There are equivalent limits on the use of mail and guild functions on all but LotRO, where they make no mention of guild restrictions.
  • • Rest XP is only mentioned in LotRO’s commentary, and it’s only available to subscribers.  I recall from TOR’s PTS that rest XP was not available when the accounts were set to F2P, and BioWare’s already stated that F2P will not gain XP as quickly as subscribers.  Don’t recall the specifics of PSP XP.
  • • All of the games limit character slots.  EQ1’s three tiers are 2/4/8 per server respectively.  EQ2 is 2/4/7 per account. LotRO is 1/3/5 for their three tiers per server. TOR will go with 2/2/12, although there is confirmation from Joveth Gonzalez that subscribers will eventually get more than 12 toons per server.  All of the games allow for the purchase of slots for non-subs.
  • • All of the games lock out alts for former subscribers if they’re over the limit for their new account type.  EQ1 and 2 didn’t let you pick which alt(s) you got to keep and use (at least, EQ2 didn’t let me pick and choose, it just locked out >5 and I couldn’t access the neater ones at the bottom of the list until I deleted the less-liked ones on top).  Not sure how LotRO did it.  TOR will not initially restrict former subs from their toons even if they’re over the character slot limit, but Joveth did confirm recently that in a future patch, this will change and players will have to choose which toons to play or to resubscribe to keep playing them all.
  • • Customer service is limited on all of the games, although LotRO does offer tech support to all three tiers, just not in-game support.  EQ1 and 2 only offer support beyond transactional stuff to subscribers.
  • • Forum access is limited for LotRO non-subs.
  • • Both EQs and LotRO limit trait/alternate ability use.  Both EQs limit what kind of spell ranks you can use and also how many quests you can have going at the same time.
  • • TOR doesn’t (yet) have proper housing, but both EQs limit it, while LotRO just lets everyone have it for in-game coin regardless of account type.
  • • All four games limit use of the auction house and the use of higher-tier equipment.  LotRO has unlocks available for listing items for sale (Freepers can’t even list anything without an unlock).  TOR will have unlocks reasonably-priced that will allow raiders to stay competitive. Interestingly enough, all PSPs will be able to retain any purples they’ve currently got equipped, but they just won’t be able to equip new ones until they purchase the unlock or resub.
  • • For you crafters out there, LotRO doesn’t restrict crafting other than by which expansion(s) you have.  However, to join the crafting guilds (and thus get access to additional cool recipes) requires a store purchase or subscription. The two EQs don’t mention crafting, but TOR severely limits crafting (crew skills) in that you have fewer slots for skills if you’re PSP or F2P.
  • • The two EQs don’t mention priority in queue (I’ve never been in queue for either of them), but LotRO and TOR both cite that subscribers will get priority, and median tiers will get secondary priority, with full F2Ps getting lowest priority.
  • • LotRO has instanced repeatable content called skirmishes, similar to TOR’s warzones, ops, and flashpoints. Freepers and Premium players have limits, but can purchase more opportunities.  TOR’s going to have passes that can be bought to let Freepers have a higher allotment of this content per week or month.
  • • LotRO also has ‘Monster Play’, where you play one of Sauron’s forces (affectionately referred to as ‘Creeps’) and PVP against regular players. This is also limited for non-subscribers, but unlocks are available to purchase.
  • • All four games have an in-game store you can buy stuff in.  Right now, there’s a huuuuuge amount of grief going on in the LotRO forums/community about the prices of warsteeds, their gear, and dye packs for them.  Those of us playing on TOR’s PTS checking out the Cartel Packs you can buy and get random stuff in have been generally positive in response to what kind of stuff you get out of them. My sister spazzed out and demanded to know how she could have a Pink-Purple lightsaber when I showed her a screenie of the Pink-Purple Indestructible Crystal in action.  LotRO sure doesn’t offer a portable generic class trainer in their store, nor a throne that doubles as a mount (I’m totally going to run over Jawas on Tatooine with it when I get one). Most of their stuff is geared toward augmenting accounts and cosmetic gear, and even their subscribers have to buy stuff like added space in the bank or shared storage. Where TOR will totally clean up is in the pricing of items to buy and how cheap buying coins will be.  They’ve given us a few price points already, and they’re pretty generous compared to LotRO’s price points, and we’ll get more information in the future, I’m sure.

So, at the end of the day, if you really think about it and the various limits that will be imposed on TOR players when F2P launches on the 15th, the overall model is equivalent to three other games out there who have successfully transitioned from subscription-only to a choice of play models.  Each game offers unlocks based on which non-sub tier one is on, and all the major stuff is covered.  As you can see, the overall methodology isn’t freakishly restrictive compared to other games, and in fact, TOR’s F2P accounts will still be competitive against other games in terms of what a player gets to keep.

Wookies should not be able to unleash their swords willy-nilly….just saying…

When TOR converts, it will have the advantage of more options for its F2P players than the other games. One big point here is that LotRO never grandfathered old subscriber accounts into their median tier that I’m aware of.  TOR’s PSP program is very generous as well.  The fact that they’re automatically grandfathering all former subs into this rather than asking for a purchase first, sure, it’s obviously a means to retain folks or entice former players into coming back, but the fact that they offered it up front rather than adding it after going live is pretty cool of BioWare.  The pricing of items and buying more cartel coins is actually very reasonable and improves on the model the other games provide, so I suspect BioWare and EA will be doing brisk business.  Just as I occasionally buy Turbine Points to buy a new mount for LotRO on my main, I fully expect to buy cartel coins even though I intend to stay a subscriber.  I’m really excited at the kinds of stuff they’re putting in the cartel store and with promises that they’re gonna rotate the stock as it were and add new items to the store periodically, I’m looking forward to seeing it in all of its glory.

The devs have said recently in posts, tweets, and whatever that they’re going to keep an eye on things and see how this all pans out.  If things aren’t working right, they’re going to tweak it to try and fix it.  They know they have a PR problem, and it’s clear that some of the options feel more like EA trying to nickel and dime people (i.e. paying to unlock hiding the head slot, really?), but when it all boils down, we have a solid game that is trying to survive in a saturated market.  Some of their choices aren’t popular or might feel like F2P players are getting the shaft, but if you really look at how other games do the same thing… no, we’re not.  BioWare’s actually making an honest effort to be competitive.

I wish them well.

Let me know your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below. Always remember to be nice, we’re all gamers here and we’re all unique, so no flaming people out.

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24 Responses to “SWTOR’s F2P vs Other Games’ F2P Models”

  1. Funkyus says:

    The biggest gripe is that Lotro and the 2 EQs don’t limit your hotbars, a very basic and non-cosmetic UI. This is very strange considering all 3 are skill-bloat style games.

    • Orminis says:

      There are only 2 restrictions which are ridiculous. 1st one is about the quickbars. Sorry but this is just a fu*king bulshit. 2nd is about warzones and flashpoints. To put restrictions how many to make a week is just stupid.
      Wish You all the best to all playing SWTOR. I won’t be one of them 100%.

  2. Nisalu says:

    And how about these TOR’s restrictions: ‘general chat use only’, ‘you can only receive in-game mail’, ‘cannot participate in secure trading’, ‘longer quick travel cooldown period’, ‘no access to emergency fleet pass’, ‘use a mount 5-10 days later’, ‘no field revives for f2p gamers’, ‘lower XP for f2p gamers’, ‘quickslots restrictions’, ‘cannot equip most perple items’? Make another attempt to compare Lotro’ f2p and SWTOR’ f2p.

    • Nisalu says:

      Oops, ‘use a mount 5-10 levels later’ and ‘cannot equip most purple items’

    • Jean says:

      I never said there weren’t any restrictions. The biggest one of the laundry list I went down in the post was the fact that even PSPs only get (once the patch is in) 2 active char-slots.

      Some of the items you listed, Nisalu, can’t really be used in a comparison, because LotRO doesn’t have a fleet pass option, for example. And LotRO also limits the high-end gear you can use without being a subscriber, so the thing about purples isn’t just a TOR thing.

      I’m not saying that there isn’t a good deal of stuff like what you’re listing that seems trivial, petty, annoying, vexing, and hints of what feels like being nickel and dimed, cos you’re right, that sort of stuff is there. I remember going WTF?!? when my PTS toon couldn’t accept a /quest reward/ of a credit box.

      My article was mostly addressing the hugest issues and trying to shed some light on the very basic question of how TOR’s doing things compared to other games, because I’d seen a great deal of commentary about TOR’s methods, but not many were actually looking to see how it stacked up against other big-name games who went through the same transition.

      I appreciate your feedback, thank you! :)

      • Nisalu says:

        >And LotRO also limits the high-end gear you can use without being a subscriber
        >LotRO doesn’t have a fleet pass option, for example
        Yes, but it doesn’t have any quick travel restrictions, too.
        >My article was mostly addressing the hugest issues and trying to
        Your article is mostly incorrect.

        • Jedi-Smeeg says:

          I’d like to jump in and defend Jean here from my experience with EQ2. I’ve never played LotRO, but I did play EQ2 quite extensively.

          I quit when I got into TOR beta, but went back about a month ago to check things out. And the amount of restrictions there seems on par to what TOR’s doing.

          Restricting access to chat is common, so is in-game mail and trading player to player. I didn’t check into things like quick travel, gating in EQ terms, but can you define what “longer quick travel cooldown periods” mean? Is it 1 extra minute? Is it the normal cool-down time and they can’t upgrade them via the Legacy system? I don’t recall seeing any details about it, but it doesn’t seem like that huge of an issue.

          The quick-slot restrictions seem odd, but if it’s a cheap unlockable then meh. As for restriction on items, TOR is being more than generous by allowing PSPs to keep the use of the purples they already have. I logged into EQ2 and I couldn’t even use any of the gear that my max level Inquisitor had, because it was all Legendary or Fabled, both restricted to F2P players. It was equipped, as far as I know, but I couldn’t see it on my character sheet, so I was a little concerned. But then I remembered that I liked TOR better anyway and got over it.

          All in all, yes, it’s a restrictive system, but you know what, that’s the way the cookie crumbles, all games tack on restrictions for F2P accounts after they’ve switched. Yeah, there is a bit of nickel and diming going on, but you know what? That’s how the system survives and makes money for Bioware to make more content for us. By those little purchases. So it’s 100 coins to unlock two extra quickslot bar that you used to have. Well, you aren’t paying $15 a month anymore anyway, so the slightly over a dollar you spent to unlock them is a small price to pay, I guess.

        • Jean says:

          I would like to politely and respectfully dispute the phrase ‘mostly incorrect’ you have used, Nisalu.

          I will grant you the bit about high-end gear in LotRO. I should have been more specific that I was looking at the Legendary system, which you have to unlock additional slots regardless of which kind of account a player has. Your point is still accurate, of course.

          However, you also mentioned fleet pass /and/ quick travel as two separate points earlier, but when I questioned your fleet pass point, you rebutted with quick travel. I wasn’t disputing the issue about quick travel, I happen to agree with you that it’s not one of the better ideas I’ve seen. As a comparison piece, I tried to line up equivalent services on all four games, thus didn’t include a remark about fleet pass.

          Now, here’s the kicker… the data I pulled for all the numbers, and the restrictions and the comparisons? They all came straight from the /official/ websites linked at the top of the article.

          So if most of this information is as you say incorrect, then all four games had best update their own websites, shouldn’t they? :)

          What my intention here was to focus on the biggest issues and the ones with the most commonality between the four games to point out the basic premise: TOR’s F2P isn’t hideously different than previous F2P models we’ve seen. There are details different, and yes, TOR has some pretty eyebrow-raising restrictions of its own, things that aren’t really mirrored on the other games very well, so it was difficult to draw comparisons without taking everyone through the tidepools. I was never intending on going through every last nook and cranny and compare every last detail between all four games. With that in mind, calling an article ‘mostly incorrect’ over a few tiny details isn’t entirely fair. The article is mostly correct, actually, with a couple of details which you have pointed out, and I thank you for that.

          And now, I have something to possibly work on for my next article, and I thank you for the idea for that too.

          Have a great night!

          • Mike Black says:

            Some remarks.
            You dont need any additional Legendary slot opened to play LotRO even in the highest level. You can do any of the content with using a fairly balanced weapon that suit your gameplay. There is an option where you can add a Major Legendary slot bought from the store, option that exists for the subscribers and the freeps but there is nothing stopping you playing the content if you own it and this is no P2W.
            A freep in SWTOR cannot use any artifact level item at any character level unless it will unlock it or sub.
            So there are two different things here making this point misleading.
            Something about classes too. The two classes offered when someone owns the Moria expansion are nice but not objectively the coolest ones. Many people dont like them and those classes are not a must have. LotRO offers the Vanilla classes for free just like SWTOR does. So that was a bit subjective.
            The major factor of LotRO’s F2p model functionality is the ability to (even awfully grinding sometimes) their currency in game. A player can combine this ability with a few months subscription or buying game’s currency with real money and have the content one wants. LotRO is giving options SWTOR, as a new game, does not currently have and this is done because it has much more content to monetize. This is an elemental part in this comparison and should have been mentioned.
            LotRO has Raids, Dungeons AND Skirmishes many of them scalabe to the desired level, depending on what content one owns.
            In LotRO you buy content once and own it forever where in TOR you select to weekly rent the content you like.

            IMHO, SWTOR F2P model need to be a litlle less restrictive mostly in UI elements, leveling quest rewards and artifact use. They really need to rethink this model, people should subscribe because they enjoy playing and want to reward Bioware and not because they feel punished being free players. Their direction is entirely wrong.
            Unlike LotRO, SWTOR has so much potential, so many things to add, imagine or make, Bioware needs to understand this quickly and adapt.

            The rest of this article is well made and very informative, i look forward to read more from you. :)

  3. Alice Wilkes says:

    Welcome to the team Jean!!

  4. seth says:

    Un4tun8ly I will never go back, free or not. Reason? I remember when I first read about how a SW mmo was going to be made. Any idea how long ago that was? Many a year. Was it worth the wait and all the time I spent tracking it? Building up the excitement with the endless possibilities….only to have been delivered a sub-par game. While I was still playing I got through a few of the story lines and I loved them. But thats all there was to like. There was nothing new done that I hadn’t seen before. Again, we were given an old thing repackaged and sold as new but with a Star Wars theme. Kind of sad, way past dissapointing.
    The first guild wars was way better than this game, diablo 2 was way better than this game. You want to know why? I personally know a lot people, myself included, that played both of those games for over 3 years. I dont personally know anyone who played SW for over 3 months. Not because its P2P, but because there just isnt any reason to keep playing it more than 3 months. Its overly borring and just not immersive in any way.
    Now I have to rent content? Really?
    P.S. Someone tell bioware to stop letting ea touch their stuff

    • I’ve been playing since SWTOR since beta. That was close to a year ago. Want to know what I’ve been doing all that time? RPing mostly. The great thing about RP is that you create your own story. Couple that with a good RP guild (the same one I’ve been in since Pre-launch), and you’ve got your own little saga.

    • Fredrik says:

      Well, you don’t know me, but I’ve played SWTOR since beta and pre-launch, and I still enjoy it! These days I mostly do ops/raids but that’s what I often enjoy most in MMOs.
      I also have a few friends who still play the game (since launch). And lots of people left our guild for Secret World and GW2 this summer, but now most of them are back to SWTOR :)
      I’ve played some LotRO, mostly as F2P, and the restrictions in SWTOR doesn’t seem too hard (except maybe the quickbars, hide head and match color).

  5. WonkoTheSane says:

    I tend to bring up Star Trek Online in my posts, but they are another example for a sub gone f2p game. I played at launch, subbed a year, went back f2p recenly. I think they have the least restrictions for returning subs. Near as I could tell by playing, and having read their f2p/sub chart, I have evrything I had b4, that I need to stroll the galaxy looking for a fight. I can’t answer to raid access or content, but I know my top lvl gear is stil viable, only 1 tier down front current top (very minor upgrade)

    I too am perplexed by the quick bar restriction, but the rest seems comparable to my f2p exp in LotRo, STO, Rift (stabs self in eye)

  6. Salizars says:

    The lack of quickbars makes the game pretty much unplayable past level 20 or so. That is the one they really messed up on.

    Not being able to match colors, hide head gear, show titles or show legacy name are all money grabs which EA is unfortunately famous for. Those should just be included. As a subscriber since beta I got 1950 coins yesterday, and I’ll spend all of them (and more) just getting my 3rd crafting slot and 2 quickbars back, and I still won’t be able to color-match.

    The whole point of F2P is usually to get people hooked and get them to buy stuff from the cash shop. EA’s strategy is obviously different; their’s is to try to hook people to get them to subscribe. Ironically, games like DDO and LOTRO have shown that non-subscribers tend to spend more on the cash shop than subscribers do on their subscription, so I’m puzzled why EA’s whole focus is to get people to subscribe.

    But to get them hooked they have to make the free game fun. Playing a level 20 character with only a single quickbar is not fun. So true F2P players are going to get to that stage and then quit in frustration rather than subscribe.

    • JohnL says:

      It’s 2 action bars, not one as you claim. You level GW2 with one action bar and some F keys. Why are 2 action bars not enough for SWTOR?

  7. Greyhame says:

    Interestingly, none of the restrictions you have compared there or in the comments are restrictions I, as a former subscriber, have a problem with. It’s the rest I do, like the removal of two quick bars that don’t let me effectively play my level 50 anymore,the fact that for some reason I can’t display earned titles without paying, the fact that I can no longer unify colours which is just plain annoying, etc.

    If this was suppose to entice me back to want to play again and give them money, it’s failed completely for me.

    • Canis says:

      Exactly this. I was following this game for a long time before the beta, Ive playing since Beta, bought my CE the first night they were available, and payed for my sub up until they first announced F2P.

      I then come back to find that all that time and money invested isn’t worth a crap. I can’t play any of my 50’s effectively with only two toolbars, I can’t display titles I EARNED before any talk of F2P ever happened, I can’t even match the damn colors of my character or my companion anymore, AND I can’t even get onto the freaking forums to talk about the issue because I’m not a subscriber anymore. Bullsh!t.

      I, like many others, was slapped in the face by EA/BW for investing years into following the game, dumping loads of money into a CE or whatever version others bought, and paying for months of game time.

      No way I’m going to play this game only to get bullied into being nickled and dimed. They won’t get back any old subscribers because of these restrictions.

  8. Galadeon says:

    Pretty biased article. You can tell the author is a fan of the game. He leaves out all the insane restrictions that SWTOR has that the others do not (ex. Action bars, paying to equip items, insane travel restriction). When someone later brings them, he calls them trivial. They are not trivial, and seeing the author respond in that way shows his bias toward the game. In the future take any SWTOR articles by this author with a grain of salt as it will be written through fan googles.

  9. Jaarus says:


    I can see what the OP was attempting to say – that F2P has limitations where ever you go so its nothing new.

    Unfortunately, I do agree with the countless comments though that the OP appears to have misjudged the severity of the restrictions in place on SWTOR to make playing (and enjoying) the game a viable option.

    SWTOR differs from all other F2P models that I have seen though (as rightly pointed out above) through one clear difference… HOW does the F2P model expect to generate revenue.

    Game revenue = shop
    The game is welcoming and you can quietly potter away, levelling up. As you log in you are usually faced with the latest deals and offers at the shop – the shop stock changes regularly so there are always items that you will probably want… items vary from the cheap to the expensive and credits dont cost THAT much to real world money to purchase. They need you to break that ‘credit cherry’ you see. Once you have got some then you will buy some stuff and then something new appears (usually just out of reach) so you pop another £5er in to get a new outfit for your mount or whatever (yey, look at me, look at me!) and this cycl continues. You dont NEED to do it but you really WANT to do it.
    THAT is how a good F2P model makes its money – as I say, you dont need it, you just want it. And being greedy buggers that want eventually takes over and you HAVE to have it!

    Game revenue = subscriptions
    They strip the game right back so its playable, just. The shop contains nothing that you really WANT just stuff you NEED – or you constantly get reminded ‘you can subscribe you know and then you get everything’ (back!)
    So now as a F2Per I am facing the prospect of being bent over a barrel regarding NEEDING to get more hotbars…. and NEEDING to get permission to use purples… and NEEDING (later on) to get access to areas/wz/ops I am not allowed in. With the constant reminder ‘you can subscribe you know and then you get everything’

    So yes the game is ‘free to play’ but its certainly not ‘free to enjoy’

  10. MorrganS says:

    Just to chime in here…
    Lotro HAS limitations to quick travel. You want to ride the horse, you need to pay. I do not quite remember what or how, but you need. Excptions might be the zones you had already paid for, I am not sure, but there has been restrictions.
    Also the 2 hot bars, people get over it. I see people summoning Cartel packs 10 at a time. for that amount you could have 5 hotbars for all characters!
    Is it a money drain (the hotbars thing) ? Yes, of course! but you do not need it to start playing. Some goes for the vanity stuff like unifying colour or display title. If “SuperOVerRaider1!!!1” is not displayed, then you are not able to play? Do not think so. Also, you do not need puples (to begin with) prototype is completely viable and easy to maintain and upgrade. Of course we all want to have all the artifact hilts 3-20, but we do not need it.
    The most part which bugged me was the restriction on character slots. But if you can upgrade to more, 5 wz is plenty. that’s 60 WZ a week (5 times 12v characters) so if you want to PLAY Wz you can for free.

    If you want to be the best bada$$ Mara out there, clobbering people up again and again, top the leader bord for Ranked WZ, get ALL the loot from OPS and FP etc, well then you need to subscribe. But you spend obviously 5+hours a day at this game anyway and then subscribing is totally cool to be expected.

    So chill out and endjoy it!

    • MorrganS says:

      Also, I want to add that they advertised this game as :

      *now with a free to play option*

      This means in essence: if you can live with the restruictions mentioned herwith, you do not need to pay anything.

      That is something totally different than having the game to be F2P andpaying is just adding stuff.
      Is it the right way? I do not know, you do not know. we will see and as has been mentioned before, the devs are looking closely and it might get adjusted.
      I would wager that they add the 2 hotbars mighty quick because it gets so much rediculus back lash.
      Ab dafür!

  11. […] first feature on the site was a basic comparison between the free-2-play (F2P) models of Star Wars: The Old Republic, […]

  12. Jerry Purvis says:

    LOTRO did grandfather older accounts. If you had purchased the full SoA and MoM games prior to it going F2P, you retained full access.

    Also, in LOTRO, it is not required of F2P players to purchase expansions to get to level cap. They will simply be limited to the epic quest, but won’t have access to any of the side quests or end-game material such as raids. For example, in the latest expansion pack into Rohan, they wouldn’t have access to the Hytbold quest line, unless they purchased the expansion pack.

    I personally feel that LOTRO’s model is the best F2P model out there of the mainstream games that have gone that route.

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