Review for Lord of the Rings Online F2P Mode
Date: 10-29-2010 Views:
KeyWords: review,Lord of the Rings Online,f2p mode,Turbine Entertainment,writer club,Samahir
- Summary: Recently Turbine announced that the game (LOTRO) will go F2P. I was quite happy with the decision because all this time most of my friends who played the game were of the expression that 'It is a good game but paying 15 us dollar a month is not a good idea'. Turbine had also been seeing some downturn in its number of subscribers. They also own Dungeon and Dragons game. But turbine is known for LOTRO. So in order to be sure if F2P will work for LOTRO.They first experimented with Dungeon and Dragons and made it F2P. And it was a huge success and Turbine was able to make some revenues out of it rather than closing it.
CASH SHOP ROLE: (5/10)
I have mixed reactions on cash shop. But still the cash shop needs a lot of tweaking ,if you know what I mean. There are few obstacles for free players and even for premium players ( players who have bought the original game and expansions ,but donot want to buy turbine points and items from the cash shop). In order to better understand it ,I will compare the LOTRO shop with the DDO shop:
DDO always has a point where you're done paying, if you're a Premium player. You've got all the character options you need, and barring the release of new content that you want, you are -set-, no matter how many new characters you roll (barring running out of slots and not wanting to delete something).
It's still quick to jump in and run with, and the community remains some of the best around, having managed to not be swallowed up by the tide of less positive players that are going to come with any F2P shift. Some of the options are, as I would hope and expect, account-wide, such as bag space slots.
However, compared to DDO, the emphasis on subscribing vs. premium seems to be MUCH heavier so far.
Trait slots are capped at a relatively low level for free/premium players. Purchasing trait slots, furthermore, is NOT an account-wide character improvement. Rather these must be purchased, individually, for each character that you create. I'm an addicted person in any game I play, so this is a definite minus for me...the idea that if I stay Premium, any future rolled characters will involve pulling out the wallet once again, even if I own all of the quest packages and expansions/unlock slots. For you new players, trust me on this...the further you get, the more you're going to feel the burn from capped trait slots. These are a significant part of your character progression, and you WILL be terribly gimped unless you have them.
As far as I can tell, fast travel has NO way of being permanently unlocked for a Premium player. If you want to get around without going subscription, the only way is temporary passes...this is another "You will NEVER be done paying" aspect, this one even more severe than the trait slots. In endgame this is going to be downright awful, there are raid zones that can -only- be accessed via fast travel, meaning even if you own the content you will not be able to get to it if a Premium player without throwing down more points for a fast travel pass. This one is just downright awful and may prove one of the deal-breakers for me.
Monster play may not be done by Premium players. At all. There is not even a purchase available to unlock. This is just absolutely terrible.
Destiny points can only be spent by subscribers? -Really-? I felt downright taunted when I found out that little gem. Look, I get you want me to buy accelerated XP tomes or whatever they are. But don't tell me I've -earned- destiny points, but cannot use them.
One of the things that worked about DDO is that while subscribing brings perks, not subscribing doesn't have any particularly massive, character gimping drawbacks. And in the end, why should it, if I'm willing to spend money on points?
But there are some good points also of cash shop. You can actually gain turbine points by doing certain quests. But you will have to grind for them. And sometimes the process is quite slow. Also the shop prices are quite high. Some of the items are as expensive as 1000 turbine points. The mount level has been decreased to level 5. And you can buy yourself a mount from cash shop at level 5.
The interface is quite user friendly. And if you have played any other traditional mmorpg like World of Warcraft ,than you will have no problem getting used to this interface. If you still have problems than tutorial is very helpful which pops up every now and then ,whenever you do something new.There is even a questhelper type of thingy which actually tells you what you need and where you will find it. if you open up your map. Each quest is given different color and you can move towards that area. For example I had to quest for claw monsters. So when I opened up my map. That quest area where these animals were found was marked with the color of red.
MONSTER PLAY: ( 7/10)
As stated above this is only available if you buy this part of game from cash shop. And it is the only form of pvp you will find in the game. The monsters start from the maximum capped level ( lvl 65) but they have to do quests to learn deeds and be as powerful as to fight the opposite faction.
These are very similar to instances. The only difference is that you can train soldiers or you can party up and clear the area.
PROS AND CONS
Middle Earth experience.
Bug free gaming.
Cash shop prices.
Customer service not available to free users.
Have to buy the original game as well as expansions.
OVERALL SCORE: 8/10