The Secret World making subscriptions optional

As does tend to happen with MMOs that are neither World of Warcraft nor EVE Online, The Secret World is shaking up its business model and dropping subscriptions. The $15 monthly fee is optional from today, barely five months after launch, but you do still need to buy Funcom's real-world-ish supernatural MMORPG to play. You know, like how Guild Wars 2 works.

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As does tend to happen with MMOs that are neither World of Warcraft nor EVE Online, The Secret World is shaking up its business model and dropping subscriptions. The $15 monthly fee is optional from today, barely five months after launch, but you do still need to buy Funcom's real-world-ish supernatural MMORPG to play. You know, like how Guild Wars 2 works.

As you'd expect, Funcom hopes to make enough of a profit from selling in-game items, services and content packs for real cash. The first four 'Issues' updates have been free to subscribers, and the fifth will be too for everyone who registers an account before the end of December. After that, all players will need to cough up cash for new Issues separately.

The $15 subscription will stay on for those who fancy a little extra. Subscribers get $10 of bonus items and a free gift every month, a 10 percent discount for the real-money store, and a reusable XP booster. Lifetime subscribers, Grand Masters, get an extra 10 percent discount on top.

"We tried to be a responsible subscription company and release something every month to give value for that money. Ignoring that I work here, I felt that as a gamer, that is what I’d want to see from a subscription game," game director Joel Bylos told Rock, Paper, Shotgun.

"But it really hasn't paid off in the end, so we have to make some changes to bring more people in. But in terms of the subscription dying, I think Blizzard are laughing at us all from atop their thrones. Whenever I hear people say that subs are dead, I point to the biggest money-makers in the industry."

Check the FAQ for more information, and peep this trailer:

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    December 12, 2012 7:00 AM

    Alice O'Connor posted a new article, The Secret World making subscriptions optional.

    As does tend to happen with MMOs that are neither World of Warcraft nor EVE Online, The Secret World is shaking up its business model and dropping subscriptions. The $15 monthly fee is optional from today, barely five months after launch, but you do still need to buy Funcom's real-world-ish supernatural MMORPG to play. You know, like how Guild Wars 2 works.

    • reply
      December 12, 2012 7:17 AM

      personally, that last sentence was a little patronizing... =\

    • reply
      December 12, 2012 7:23 AM

      Cool, now I can play it again.

      • reply
        December 12, 2012 8:58 AM

        Can you? I had purchased on release but every time I try to log in it says incorrect details. Reset all but still nothing?? You had any luck?

    • reply
      December 12, 2012 7:37 AM

      Yay! Was just trialing this and picked up a copy for 18 dollars from ebay because I enjoyed it enough to play the free month, and perhaps one following. What good timing.

    • reply
      December 12, 2012 9:49 AM

      "We tried to be a responsible subscription company and release something every month to give value for that money. Ignoring that I work here, I felt that as a gamer, that is what I’d want to see from a subscription game."

      Except I'm getting monthly updates from Guild Wars 2 for free.

      • reply
        December 12, 2012 10:39 AM

        Enjoy those jumping puzzles.

        • reply
          December 12, 2012 1:15 PM

          and new dungeons, world events, items, balances, holiday mini games, PVP stuff... this game puts anyone else's updates to shame right now.

    • reply
      December 12, 2012 12:16 PM

      Everyone making the $15 Monthly Subs the standard is the problem. If they would lower them to $9.99 they would get more people to sub. I don't play MMO's like I used to, so paying $15 a month for a game that I might jump into on the weekend is just a waste of money to me. I would think they would make more money having a lot of people paying a Lower Sub than a few paying a Higher Sub.

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        December 12, 2012 1:08 PM

        I think 9.99 is the sweet spot for sub based mmos, I am sad they made the jump to 14.99 so early.

      • reply
        December 13, 2012 5:17 AM

        You can get this for an average of $8-10/month if you subscribe for more then one month. The reason they do the $15/month thing is so that you commit.

        Logic says that it appears as though there are a lot of people that have no problems paying $15/month for a 8year old game with redundant content (that they might play once a week), why would you have a problem with a brand new/state of the art game, that looks and plays well?



        • reply
          December 13, 2012 9:31 AM

          I think most people will only want pay for one active MMO sub a month. If they still have an active WoW sub then they are much less likely to add on an extra $15 for an new game(no matter how good it may be). If games like this were perhaps $5 or $10 a month they might have more of a fighting chance.

    • reply
      December 13, 2012 1:06 AM

      If that game costs a fee service for $9.99 a monthly, then I would be willing to pay. No thanks to $14.99 a monthly.

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