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DC Universe Online Goes Free-To-Play

Free-to-play. The term just sounds so darn appealing, doesn't it?

Today, Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) has announced a new free-to-play business model for DC Universe Online. The game lets players assume the role of their favorite superhero; anyone from Superman to Batman. As of now, fans have logged over 42 million hours of game time...that's a lot of playin'.

Starting in late October, you'll be able to download and access DUCO for free on both the PS3 and PC. Also, SOE has revealed three new access levels to go along with this move: there's Free, Premium, and Legendary. All three levels will let you explore the big open world and take on missions, but each level offers different benefits.

Free: New players will now have access to the current gameplay in DC Universe Online (including Gotham City, Metropolis, and all current raids and alerts), with the ability to create two characters, join a league and many other benefits. Free level players will be able to purchase downloadable game packs/updates, additional character slots, powers and more through microtransactions.

Premium: Any player who has spent at least $5 USD (including former paid subscribers and new players who have purchased $5 of in-game items) will qualify for the Premium access level. Premium level players will have more benefits available to them than the Free level player, including additional character slots, additional inventory slots, and higher cash limits. Downloadable adventure packs, additional character slots, and more can be purchased in-game.

Legendary: Maximum features and benefits are included at this level. Loaded with enhanced additional features, Legendary access will be available for a $14.99 USD monthly fee and includes all DLC packs at no cost, more than 15 character slots, more than 80 inventory slots, the ability to form unrestricted-sized leagues, and many other benefits.

Said John Smedley, SOE President:

"When we launched DC Universe Online, we introduced a very different brand of massive online game driven by fast action combat to PC and PS3™gamers and with that, we discovered a new type of online gamer. We've listened to our community, and we've determined that the free-to-play model is the best fit for DC Universe Online.

Our philosophy embraces learning from our experience and as a pioneer in the free-to-play space with proven successful games like Free Realms and Clone Wars Adventures, we believe this new model will expand the DCUO experience and offer more options that cater to every type of player so they can play the game in a way that fits them."

Incentive enough to play?

Related Game(s): DC Universe Online

Tags: dc universe online, soe, sony online entertainment, dco

9/19/2011 10:13:19 AM Ben Dutka

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Comments (23 posts)

Beamboom
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 10:36:33 AM
Reply

I am still waiting for this one to drop below the magic limit for me to import it without paying taxes.

But Ben, I don't think you can play AS Superman or Batman or any of the other DC heroes - it would look rather silly if there was 150 batmen walking down the street, woudn't it? ;)
You create your own hero with his/her own identity just like in City Of heroes, with the famous DC heroes found as npcs in the game, from whom you receive missions and so forth.


Last edited by Beamboom on 9/19/2011 10:39:06 AM

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anjpikapp3
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 11:19:55 AM

Yes, you can play as Batman or Superman...there's enough space in the MMO that you probably wont even notice another Batman for quite some time :) *though there were quite a few Flash's last time I logged on.

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Alienange
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 3:08:27 PM

@ Beamboom - Wouldn't waiting for it to be a free dlc by then end of October be all the "magic" you need to play?

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Kr3sn1k
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 11:29:36 PM

No you can't play as bat man or superman or even the flash in the game the only way you can play them is in the legendary arena which is pvp.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 5:42:01 AM

@Alien: Oh shit, I did not notice the entire game was for free! I thought it was just the monthly fee that was replaced with micro transactions.
Oh yay - now *that's* an offer I can not refuse indeed. Let's create a psxe guild!

@anjp: What you've probably seen is characters where the player tried to replicate a well known hero. You create your own but how it looks is up to you of course (within the editors boundaries).
Supposedly the character creation is pretty good too. I look forward to this!


Last edited by Beamboom on 9/20/2011 5:43:28 AM

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dillonthebunny
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 10:47:29 AM
Reply

haha.. knew this would happen. looks like im back on DCO again!

and no, you cant play any 'known' super-person.. I think Ben was just generalising.

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Godslim
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 6:04:18 PM

u can in pvp legends

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Looking Glass
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 10:48:57 AM
Reply

I've had my eye on this game for some time and now that it has a free-to-play option I'll probably be giving it a shot.

I'm a little surprised Sony didn't think of this sooner. Why choose between the free-to-play model and subscription model? Why not do both at the same time?

Last edited by Looking Glass on 9/19/2011 10:49:41 AM

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frylock25
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 2:16:19 PM

they wanted as much initial revenue from the game as they could get for it. then when its not selling well move to this model to get people to check it out.

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Neurotoxiny
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 10:55:52 AM
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This is awesome... sweet! I'm gonna try it out if I can find a copy of DCUO floating around somewhere :)

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Zemus101
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 1:40:01 PM

Remember, it's completely free to download the full game. Or it will be when this new F2P model starts up.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 11:11:34 AM
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Free? Consider me in then. I bet I can get a guy pretty close to Cole MacGrath.

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lupus
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 11:18:42 AM
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servers are dead so no wonder this happen. Great game the 1st month you play it, then it just gets boring.

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maxpontiac
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 12:27:42 PM
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Awesome.

It's about time.

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DazeOfWar
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 1:25:40 PM
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I'll play now that it's free. The micro-transactions are easier to take than a monthly fee. I would rather have the choice of spending extra money.

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Alienange
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 3:10:47 PM
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Taking a page from their Free Realms are they? Sounds like it'll be worth checking out at the very least. Can I make a guy with guns that runs around shooting n00bs?

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Godslim
Monday, September 19, 2011 @ 6:07:56 PM
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i liked dc unvierse and probably will play it again now that it would be free but mmo wise its just not as good as wow

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___________
Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 3:27:06 AM
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FINALLY!
been really interested in playing this but having to buy the game monthly after buying it put me off.
why do you have to pay a monthly subscription to play the game you just bought?
i dont see ford on my front door every month asking for the subscription fee to the car i just bought!
you dont have to pay monthly to play COD, BF, every other game online so why do you with this?
tis why ive never been into MMOs, if i bought the game i should be able to access EVERYTHING and play it as long as i want!
none of this oh you cant play the game you bought any more unless you cough up your monthly subscription.
what, the 120 bucks i originally paid is not enough?
and they wonder why piracy is so rampant!

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Beamboom
Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 5:48:51 AM

You pay subscription fee if you subscribe to a paper. In these games you subscribe to new content.
That's what you pay for, access to an ever evolving, persistent virtual world.
Not easy to understand if you haven't played a mmorpg earlier, but once you play them for a while you will realize the difference.

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___________
Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 10:36:10 AM

but then dont they charge you extra for the DLC, like the green lantern update coming soon?

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Beamboom
Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 11:28:34 AM

I don't know what this DLC contain (I do not play DCO myself) but I assume it's a rather large expansion? Either by being a gigantic new map to explore (and by gigantic I mean the size of 3-4 GTAIV - at least), or by adding some major new features to the game. not tweaks, but a new layer of functionality.

But typically mmorpgs are constantly updated via patches. These updates/patches contain stuff like new weapons, quests, items, resources, dungeons, as well as maybe major events in the timeline of that universe, always lots of bug fixes and balancing tweaks, stuff like that. It may also contain improvements to the chat/game interface, player trading and storage, all sorts of stuff really. Also, the devs may have hidden some undocumented stuff in those patches. That always creates a wave of rumors and crazy speculations. :D
Typically a mmorpg has gone through a radical change during a couple of years *after* launch.
Think PSN Home scaled up by a thousand.

A development team continuously works on the game after the release. *That's* what you pay for.

And man these games are fun... Really miss them! DCO looks a bit too simple though. Remind me too much of City Of heroes, a game I just played a couple of months (In comparison, I played Anarchy Online and Star Wars Galaxies for a total of around 5 YEARS. That's two games in five years. Puts the cost into perspective doesn't it? ;)).


Last edited by Beamboom on 9/20/2011 11:50:48 AM

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___________
Wednesday, September 21, 2011 @ 10:04:03 AM

then why not do what every other game does and offer the expansion packs as DLC instead of forcing everyone to pay to play the game they just paid for?
it just seems stupid forcing everyone to pay for expansions especially if your not going to use it.
cant remember which game it was, rift i think it was, went free to play and ever since its been out grossing f*cking warcraft for crying out loud!
just goes to show going free to play does not mean you will loose money, actually quite the opposite.
allot of people are reluctant to pay then pay monthly for a game.
this the perfect example, ever since they announced this was going free to play ive heard heaps of people saying im going to go try it now.
so they may be loosing a small amount in subscriptions but they will gain that and some in increased sales and in game purchases.
all a monthly subscription does is put up a barrier scaring people away.
invite them in, show them the game then they will be much more likely to fork out for it!

thats what i love about free to play games too, you can pick and choose what you want that way your not paying for things you wont use.
thats one thing i wish games these days would adopt.
i never play games online so why am i paying for it?
im paying the same as a person who gets double what i do.
hows that fair?
publishers should split the games up and offer 3 packages.
1 SP only for 50 AUD.
2 MP only for 50 AUD.
3 or SP and MP for 90 AUD a small discount to give you incentive to buy them together instead of seperatley.

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SirLoin of Beef
Tuesday, September 20, 2011 @ 11:24:09 AM
Reply

I'm excited about this. I dug the demo but wasn't up to paying another sub for a game.

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