Lord of the Rings Online Going Free-to-Play

Lord of the Rings Online publisher Warner Bros. has revealed that Turbine's Tolkien-inspired MMORPG will go free-to-play this fall, supported by microtransactions.

"Expansions, quest packs, items, and account services" are among the goodies players will be able to purchase with points either earned in-game or bought with cash money.

'VIP' subscriptions with access to all premium content will also be available at a yet-unspecified price, similar to the model Turbine's Dungeons & Dragons Online MMORPG adopted when it went free-to-play in September 2009 with 'VIP' status costing $15 per month. Turbine reported a 40% rise in subscriptions following the switch.

"The popularity of DDO validated the extraordinary demand by gamers for quality entertainment they can experience at their own pace and within their budget," said Turbine CEO Jim Crowley in the announcement. Extending free-to-play to LOTRO will offer another premium game to a broad spectrum of fans."

If you're interested, you can sign up for a closed beta test due to begin on June 16.

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