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The Elder Scrolls Online to Use Subscriptions

The Elder Scrolls Online tweets about a an interview with Matt Firor saying The Elder Scrolls Online will be using the subscription model that's almost completely out of style for current MMORPGs. Here's word:

Choosing the right business model is part of that. We are going with the subscription model for ESO.

We're building a game with the freedom to play - alone or with your friends - as much as you want. A game with meaningful and consistent content - one packed with hundreds of hours of gameplay that can be experienced right away and one that will be supported with premium customer support. Charging a flat monthly (or subscription) fee means that we will offer players the game we set out to make, and the one that fans want to play. Going with any other model meant that we would have to make sacrifices and changes we weren't willing to make.

The Elder Scrolls Online offers unlimited play for the first 30 days with the purchase of the game. The choice is yours to play as much as you want; hundreds of hours of content, PvP, etc - is all there for you to experience with the base purchase of the game. If you want to continue playing for hundreds of hours more after that first month you'll pay a flat fee for continued, unlimited access to the game.

We'll talk about further discounts, etc. later, but for now, we are very happy to finally announce our model. It's very simple - you pay once per month after the first 30 days and the entire game is available to you.

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25. Out of experience I think they made a bad move. Aug 21, 2013, 12:37 Comet
 
I can see how they can turn this around any time they want but this will hurt them and can lead to failure. I know that they can start with the subscription model and later on move to free to play. But in this market, this will hurt their sales.
In Guild Wars 2 I know at any time I can go back to the game. If I feel like playing it for a bit more I end up buying this or that in-game item. With subscriptions once I decide to cancel it, there is little to no chance that I'll return to the game.
Besides, If you're going to buy a MMO, it's not like you'll just check it out and quit. But if you have a subscription and after a couple of months or so of playing you want to rest for a bit, you may decide to cancel. That is not unusual.
Bottom line. F2P increases your community size and makes the old gamers return to check what's new. Subscriptions require that you can convince new players to join over the years. And that is harder, because as a game gets older, so does the appeal to new gamers.
 
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