I've done quite a few betas over the years and I'd become used to having one or two icons on my desktop that offered me something for nothing but my time and goodwill. When it came to playing a game full-time and having ownership of my characters, though, I knew I'd have to put my virtual hand in my virtual pocket and come up with a credit card number. That had an obvious downside: I only have so much money so I could only justify subscribing to one or two MMOs at a time. Which was also the upside: the subscription fee acted as a kind of quality control.
Back when I began playing MMOs trying a new one meant buying a box and paying every month if you wanted to stick with it. That wasn't so much of a problem because there weren't that many MMOs to try and every new one that came along was something of an event in itself. It was worth shelling out just to say you'd been there when it happened.
|Shadefallen - last Defiant out please turn off the lights|
|Millrush - lalala! We can't hear you!|
|Faeblight - There goes the neighborhood...|
Rift's done well with its subscription model, though. Can't argue that. If one day it does flip over and go Free to Play (and I'd bet it will although probably later rather than sooner) Trion can expect a massive surge of interest and publicity and a tsunami of returning exes. It's a solid gold game and it will be around for a long time. How it raises funds is the least interesting thing about it.
|So? I can buy those and put them on a rat!|
|STO : You can walk about! Outdoors even!|
Here's the thing. I'm paying to play Rift right now and I'm still not logging in. Forget Free-to-Play, I'll be happy if more games just go Free-to-Forget-to-Play !