World of Warcraft goes F2P up to lvl20 with Starter Edition

Tuesday, 28th June 2011 23:57 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Blizzard has announced a World of WarCraft Starter Edition, meaning you can play the game for free up to level 20. Oh my god, I’ll never see most of you again.

MTV Multiplayer reports the starter edition includes content from World of Warcraft’s first expansion, The Burning Crusade.

You can sign up for a account, and the free trial, here.

As noted above, the new offer waives the game’s initial cost and subscription fee until you hit the level cap. After this point, you’ll have to fork out at least $20 for the full game, and take out a subscription.

In case you’ve been living under a truly enormous rock, World of Warcraft is the most successful premium MMORPG today and over the least decade, the standard against which all other subscription games are measured, and notoriously so good that it eats lives.

Remember, soldier – keep the rope secured around your waist, so we can haul you back out.



  1. ExOAte

    Ooooh I see a couple of reasonings behind this… first of all to boast their active accounts number =) (remember the 12million active subscribers?)

    This’ll pump some new life into WoW as about 10% will actually continue playing with a subscription after level 20.

    Interesting change but it does kinda feel like the subscription is the premium service when this goes live.

    #1 4 years ago
  2. DSB

    Uuuuuh… Duh!

    #2 4 years ago
  3. OlderGamer

    Wow sub have been droping, down about 30% from what I have read. But who numbers can be believed anyways? But the fact is that the game is old, the expansions are lite on content, and they have been recycling the “lets grind for end game gear” idea for awhile.

    Like My son said when Cati launched. He could buy a 5 lvl expansion pack for a game he has played to death, or he could buy RIFT, and play for 50lvls in new content he hasn’t seen over and over already. He said RIFT was so close to WoW it was more like a side chapter or expansion then it was a whole new game. He left wow for RIFT, so did I. So did half of our Guild.

    I like wow, they just need more content. More new building, none end game grinding content.

    There are just too many other choices out there, from RIFT to free 2 play games.

    #3 4 years ago
  4. Talkar

    I agree that the expansions are fairly light on content, but i can’t see that many new places Blizz could add to WoW, atleast not in Azeroth. I think there is only 2-3 more countries that hasn’t been added that are in the WarCraft lore, and that is about it. They could of course expand more into Outland, since it is a little vague how many countries there are in Outland, and they could also reactivate some of the dark portals that are scattered around (can’t remember if they are visible in WoW).

    #4 4 years ago
  5. DSB

    I think it’s fair to say that you like MMOs in general OG, at least based on what I’ve read. Rift might be great if you’re just looking for more of the same, with a few extra features here and there and a new artstyle, but really, I tried the trial, and compared to WoW it simply has the most ridiculous setting and lore, and what I saw of the quests (although they were obviously early) didn’t seem as interesting as the ones in WoW.

    Maybe I’m damaged from having played mostly that, and only a little bit of Anarchy Online and Champions after and before it, but WoW is tried and true. It makes people into lootwhores, it rewards persistence, and it allows people to take it very seriously, without actually having to get into very much beyond “do this rotation”, “stack these attributes”, and “move when he does this”.

    I think we can all agree that it’s very simple, and personally I was hugely disappointed by Lich King. That essentially killed the love I had for the game throughout Burning Crusade, and it hasn’t been the same since, but having taken a look at Cataclysm, I still think they made an amazing turnaround.

    They’ve been launching expansions with a lot of locked raid content, and personally I don’t see the fun in playing the same raid on different difficulties, but apart from that, I think Cataclysm turned it around and essentially did something a lot smarter, by making the familiar surprising again.

    WoW can’t keep a hold on people forever, and it’s going to be marginalized sooner or later, but the reason why they’re still the “be all, end all” MMO after seven years of total domination, is simply because they’ve been so good at what they did.

    Apart from Lich King. I very much hate on that.

    #5 4 years ago
  6. Grimrita

    Interesting move. The previous free trials clearly werent working. Something like 10% of those who did the trial only signed up to a full account – very low return if you ask me.

    That trial went up to level 10 but by making it level 20 – any difference? Nope. Just repeat/rinse the same old quests, reuse the mob and give it a different colour..

    By making the game so easy to play and ability to do sod all, in return for high amounts of xp, Blizzard only have themselves to blame. Are the mighty Blizzard worried about upcoming MMOs such as Guild Wars 2? Has Rift put a dent in their numbers? From what I have seen, maybe – Rift is extremely busy considering its almost the same as WoW.

    As for SWTWoW, I dont think it will have a huge impact on WoW numbers but if EA can keep 500,000 people playing it, good luck to them.

    #6 4 years ago
  7. Blerk

    You still have to pay for the game and not just the sub once you get to level 20? That’s immediately off-putting, tbh. They should give the game away and just require you to pay the subscriptions to continue once you get to 20.

    #7 4 years ago
  8. endgame

    seriously now, how many more losers (other than the 11.5 billion that we already know about) can there be out there?

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Talkar

    Please do elaborate.

    #9 4 years ago
  10. AHA-Lambda

    wow woah whee wow jeeze christ what!? O_O


    #10 4 years ago
  11. Patrick Garratt

    Innit. I can’t really believe it, to be honest.

    #11 4 years ago
  12. NeoSquall

    EA was much more honest when they put the “endless trial” into WAR, where you just have to pay the sub once you cap lvl 10.

    #12 4 years ago
  13. hitnrun

    Meh. If you didn’t play WoW before now, I don’t see how this makes you a customer. There’s nothing inherently interesting about the game anymore, and if you don’t know anyone, you’re not going to get hooked. Plus getting to level 20 is the work of like 45 minutes now.

    #13 4 years ago
  14. DSB

    Everybody’s always eager to see the top dog cut down to size, but ultimately there’s no sign of a threat to WoW, beyond the fact that the game is getting seriously old. Nor has there been for seven years now.

    #14 4 years ago
  15. Phoenixblight

    AS long as it has subscribers the game will continue to go and it won’t go anywhere no matter how many MMOS that get released it will still be played. The only thing that will kill WOW is Blizzard themselves and they are so in-tuned with what the broad audience wants, its unlikely they will go anywhere.

    #15 4 years ago

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