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-   -   Turbine announces Free to Play for LotRO! (http://www.spiritwood.net/forums/showthread.php?t=2132)

Dara 06-04-2010 02:21 PM

Turbine announces Free to Play for LotRO!
 
http://obsoletegamer.com/lotr-free-to-play-2809/

BURBANK, CA – June 3, 2010– Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment announced today that Turbine, Inc. will unveil a major update this fall, making The Lord of the Rings Online™ (LOTRO) free-to-play for everyone. Extending its award-winning story, LOTRO delivers the ultimate adventure featuring a massive world with state-of-the-art graphics and gameplay, and a rich set of features that until now could only be found in premium subscription-based online games.

Launching this fall across North America and Europe, with Codemasters operating the game free-to-play in Europe, LOTRO will introduce Turbine’s innovative new pricing model that allows players to download the game and play for free, purchase expansions, quest packs, items, and account services a la carte from the new LOTRO Store, or join the VIP program to get unlimited access to all of the game’s content for one low price. Players interested in getting a sneak peek of the new LOTRO can sign up for a chance to participate in the Beta program which begins June 16, 2010 at http://www.lotro.com.

“Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment is bringing quality games based on The Lord of the Rings to multiple platforms, and the franchise’s expansive adventure story lends itself perfectly for LOTRO free-to-play, giving a wide range of players the opportunity to experience the game,” said Jeff Junge, Senior Vice President Online Games and Digital Games Platforms, Warner Bros. Digital Distribution and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “We are focused on expanding our game franchises onto new digital platforms to maximize quality experiences for gamers worldwide and LOTRO’s new model is a great leading example of this.”

“Turbine’s Dungeons and Dragons Online®: Eberron Unlimited™ was the world’s first truly premium free-to-play online game that ushered in a new era of choice for online gamers seeking quality entertainment,” said Jim Crowley, President and CEO of Turbine. “The popularity of DDO validated the extraordinary demand by gamers for quality entertainment they can experience at their own pace and within their budget. Extending free-to-play to LOTRO will offer another premium game to a broad spectrum of fans.”

“Having successfully taken two titles free-to-play in the past we are very pleased to be doing the same with The Lord of the Rings Online in Europe,” said David Solari, Vice President and General Manager of Codemasters Online. “It’s a fantastic, award-winning game with a wonderfully realized world and this step will only broaden its appeal and increase its player base.”

LOTRO will offer players unlimited choice!

Free means Free! – Players will download LOTRO by visiting www.lotro.com/ and join with millions of other adventurers as they explore the most complete and authentic recreation of Middle-earth ever created and participate in LOTRO’s award-winning epic story up to level 50 for free.

Visit the new LOTRO Store! — The LOTRO Store is loaded with thousands of convenience items as well as expansion packs, premium content, additional character slots, potions, character customization and more! The LOTRO Store is seamlessly integrated into the game and lets the player identify new and exciting ways to enhance and customize their experience using points which can be purchased in the store or earned through gameplay.

Be a LOTRO VIP! – Players who elect to become a LOTRO VIP will have unlimited access to all premium content, receive priority server access, 5 character slots, a shared bank slot, and a monthly allotment of points to spend in the new LOTRO Store.

Raina 06-04-2010 02:37 PM

Still have questions? Here’s a quick FAQ about the key points of LOTRO Free-to-Play:


Is this the same model you used with DDO?
It’s very similar in a large number of ways. The basic structure is the same with some changes made to support LOTRO’s different game world and wide-open environment. Customer levels, the LOTRO Store, and other aspects of LOTRO Free-to-Play are all very similar to those of Dungeons and Dragons Online®: Eberron Unlimited™.


I already subscribe to LOTRO. Is there any benefit to staying a subscriber?
Of course! Once the game goes live you’ll keep all your current privileges, and also accrue 500 free Turbine Points per month to spend as you wish. We also have a set of Loyalty Reward Special Offers just for our veteran players – as long as you maintain your subscription in good standing you may be eligible for up to 3,000 points. If you stay active over the summer you will also earn an additional bonus of 500 Turbine Points per month until launch! For more details see the Loyalty Reward Special Offer Terms & Conditions for full details.


I have a lifetime subscription to LOTRO. What will Free-to-Play mean for me?
As a lifetime subscriber to LOTRO, you will keep all of your membership privileges and are automatically upgraded to VIP status. You will receive 500 Free Turbine Points every month like the other VIPs, but you do not have to pay a monthly fee since you are a lifetime member. All you have to do is keep playing the game and visit the LOTRO Store to spend your free Turbine Points. Lifetime members may also qualify for a special one-time Loyalty Reward of 1,000 Turbine Points. See the Loyalty Reward Special Offer Terms & Conditions for full details.


I am a LOTRO Founder. What will Free-to-Play mean for me?
As a LOTRO Founder, you automatically become a VIP and will keep all of your membership privileges as long as you pay your monthly fee. You will automatically receive 500 Free Turbine Points every month and you can spend them at your leisure in the LOTRO Store. Founding members may also qualify for a special one-time Loyalty Reward of 500 Turbine Points. See the Loyalty Reward Special Offer Terms & Conditions for full details.


Will there be a Free-to-Play Beta and when will it start?
Yes! The Beta will start in the very near future. We’ll begin accepting signups immediately at www.lotro.com/betasignup!


I’m a new or returning player. How do I sign up for Beta?
Start by registering at www.lotro.com/betasignup. We’ll select entrants from that list once beta starts.
I’m an existing customer. How do I sign up for the Beta?
Existing subscribers do not need to register to apply for the beta – we’ll randomly invite subscribers who have been active in the last 30 days and have an account in good standing throughout the beta. If you wish to register at www.lotro.com/betasignup that will count as an extra entry and may increase your chance of being selected for participation.


Is there any way to increase my chance of getting into the beta?
Sure! Follow us on Twitter and Like us on Facebook! We’ll give out special beta entry codes to our fans via social media - so give yourself the best chance of getting in and make sure to keep an eye on Twitter and Facebook for updates.


Are we under NDA during the beta?
Yes. What happens in beta stays in beta! Once you receive your invitation and apply your beta key to your account, you will have access to the private beta forums. This is the only place to discuss anything you see or do in beta. Remember, the first rule of beta is you do not talk about beta!


What can I still talk about on the public forums?
Our NDA specifies that no materials related to the beta (including updates, gameplay or user interface) may be discussed or posted without Turbine's express permission. The NDA remains in effect whether you remain in the program, or the program ends.


When does LOTRO F2P go live?
Free-to-Play will go live when Volume 3, Book 2 releases this fall.


Is Free-to-Play the only thing to look forward to for Volume 3, Book2?
No! Volume 3, Book 2 will continue the Volume 3 Epic Story as the Rangers head south. An all new area, Enedwaith, will be available as well as some exciting new features and many updates to the game including DX11 support! We’ll have more information about Volume 3, Book 2 as we approach launch. Keep an eye out for Developer Diaries and other information throughout the summer!


I still have questions. Where can I ask them?
If you still have questions after reading the full FAQ, please use the LOTRO Free-to-Play discussion forum for questions and comments!
We’re very excited about LOTRO’s move to Free-to-Play and we can’t wait for you to see all the incredible changes the team has already made to the game. Make sure you read Executive Producer Kate Paiz’s letter to the community for some great information on where LOTRO is going!


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