Turbine: Premium MMOs here to stay, but subscription-only model “probably dying”

By Brenna Hillier, Monday, 30 January 2012 23:57 GMT

The free to play revolution isn’t killing premium subscriptions, Turbine believes, but it’s forcing providers to give consumers flexibility.

“It’s probably not right to say the subscription MMO is dying, it’s probably more right to say the idea of forcing a player to only have one option for having to consume your content – that’s probably dying,” digital communications chief Adam Mersky told Eurogamer.

“I would say the mistake that’s going on out there is that people are thinking that free-to-play is something you do a few years after you do the subscription. If we were going to release another MMO, we would not come out and – from my perception – launch it as a subscription game. The right choice would be to make it a player-choice of subscription or free-to-play,” he said.

Mersky said the free to play revolution has broader implications and manifestations that online gaming.

“People now in the west expect to have full control over their entertainment dollar and spend it the way they want to,” he explained.

“While we certainly pioneered [F2P changeover] in the online game space, and the industry is adopting it – this is pretty prevalent throughout the entertainment industry. You can choose to subscribe to your satellite or cable television service, or you can buy an IP box like a Roku or an Apple TV, and get your TV shows by paying per show versus paying a monthly fee for all the TV you can watch. This is going on across entertainment.”

Turbine’s major MMOs, Lord of The Rings Online and Dungeons and Dragons Online, both saw significant revenue spikes after converting to free to play; Mersky said DDO is now “doing better than at any time” and that 2012 will be its “biggest year ever”.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. For more information, go here.



Adam Mersky

Dungeons And Dragons Online

  • DDO Player Council announced by Turbine

    Like Lord of the Rings Online before it, Dungeons and Dragons Online will soon have its own Player Council. If you are a DDO player, you can apply for membership through here. Basically, the Player’s Council works with the game developers to provide targeted feedback and valuable suggestions. You have until January 20 to sign […]

  • DDO update kicks off Shadowfell Conspiracy prequel

    Update 18 for Dungeons and Dragons Online releases today in preparation for the Shadowfell Conspiracy expansion pack. The update serves as a prequel to the expansion pack set to release on 5 June and adds two new quests, available to all players, known as the Disciples of Shadow.

Lord Of The Rings Online