WildStar Free-to-Play Confirmed

Carbine Studios’ MMO, WildStar, will be switching to a free-to-play model come this fall.

Access to all of the game’s elements has been confirmed for free-to-play players. Players on the subscription model, known as “Signature Membership,” will receive boosts to many of the game’s elements; although which specific aspects will be boosted has yet to be determined. Free-to-play players will, however, be able to earn subscription for one month at a time via the the C.R.E.D.D. system viewable here.

Player “Loyalty Rewards” will be offered to any subscribing member, from launch even into the free-to-play model.

During this transition, a new currency known as “Omnibits” will be included to allow items from the cash shop to be bought with in-game currency. This model attempts to a offer Guild Wars 2 style cash shop with the method that many free-to-play games offer of taking in-game time and spending it as real world cash.

My Opinion:

This new model seems highly beneficial for the struggling studio, however its offer of in-game time for real world value may prove detrimental to the model. Games such as Guild Wars 2 with a base cost and no future subscription fee can get away with this model but, unlike what WildStar is claiming to offer, the game keeps back its coolest aspects for those willing to pay more cash. With systems like C.R.E.D.D. appearing in more and more MMO’s, the concern over real world wealth infecting videogames is ever present. The model is the best medium currently but it still limits the content that developers can offer in their base game in respect to the amount of cash the consumer is willing to hash out.

Lukas Anderson is an Associate Writer at MONG. He can be tracked down on Tumblr and Facebook.

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