Warhammer Online free to play? When?!

Posted: July 12, 2011 in Warhammer News

Lord of the Rings Online is free to play since 2010, World of Warcraft has launched unlimited trial – just like Warhammer Online – but what about Warhammer Online and 100% F2P model?

Electronic Arts has some experienced in creating the free to play games (back in 2009 with the release of Battlefield Heroes – quite nice shooting game). Since then, EA released a lot of free to play MMOs such as Battleforge, Lord of Ultima and FIFA Online. As we can seem EA is very serious about free to play, as they’ve launched free to play MMOs for many of their biggest franchises. Based on the direction EA has been going with their online games, it wouldn’t be too surprising for Warhammer Online to go free to play, very very soon.

As we all remember, Warhammer Online originally launched back in September, 2008 and was widely regarded as a new generation MMORPG, real WoW killer – THE GAME. THE CHANGE.

After more than 900,000 subscribers, very fast, number fall till 750,000+. The latest “official” announcement pegged the game’s subscription numbers at 300,000, but the actual numbers today are probably 80,000 than 300,000. I remember when game was launched with more than 60 game servers worldwide, but has 4 today. It’s difficult for people at EA to “turn things around” without doing something drastic, as the game’s development team is probably angry and frustrated.

If Warhammer Online went free to play, it wouldn’t be the first pay to play game to do so. Dungeons and Dragons Online (DDO) from Turbine proved that pay to play going free to play works. DDO was on the brink of failure when Turbine relaunched it as a free to play title. Since then, the game has enjoyed total success. In fact, Turbine’s CEO, Jim Crowley, stated back in February 2010, “The response from players to DDO Unlimited has been nothing short of phenomenal”. Turbine’s revenues from Dungeons and Dragons Online increased over 5 times, going free to play and even its subscription revenues have more than 2x! Great isn’t it?

On the other hand, I’m not really sure, as a serious MMORPG player I find that all mmo’s that are P2P always having better content. When Warhammer does go F2P, I think it will not do so good because of the fact that it will have less content, having to cut back then again unless, gets the same benefits as Dungeons and Dragons Online then maybe it will get better but I still say that if it goes F2P it will not be that great of a game I haven’t played it, but i have seen friends play it, and to me it’s like all other MMORPG’s…

Warhammer Online today already has an unlimited free trial. Sure, the trial has a level cap of 10 and few other major restrictions, but it’s a step towards going free to play, even if it’s very, very easy. I don’t think EA/Bioware’s newest MMORPG Star Wars: The Old Republic will be free to play, but I would not be too surprised if Warhammer Online did go free to play…

Is it possible right now? By making Warhammer Online free to play, EA can easily, bring more players into the game and breathe life back. It’s still one of the best MMORPG I ever saw and maybe the only one, I really love <3…

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