Will this tie in to the End of Days ARG you've recently announced?Joel: The changes went live today, you can now play The Secret World without paying a subscription! We really want to let as many people as possible enjoy The Secret World before they all perish and suffer a horrible, horrible death. You buy the game and you get to play at full quality without the roadblocks of free-to-play and with no subscription required..
We do have a membership which yields some nice benefits, but this is fully optional and not at all required to play the game at full quality.The lifetime subscription is still available, and now yields even more than before. Those on lifetime receive everything our members do each month, in addition to a 20% discount to everything in the in-game store as well as some unique clothing.Basically we view members and lifetime members as people who want a little extra in terms of benefits, without taking away any of the play experience from those who choose not to be members. Are you, for instance, selling conveniences, selling vanity items, selling in-game perks, or instituting other forms of monetizing the game? Will future updates be for sale rather than free?Joel: Our philosophy with the store has always been to not sell power, and we want to keep it that way.


So we have cosmetic items, pets etc., and we have some convenience such as character slots, transfers, time-savers such as run-speed increase (which can also be bought for in-game cash) and temporary XP boost. You bought the game, and you will have every tool available to enjoy the full game experience to the fullest.
Rather than putting restrictions on the entry level players, we will simply be giving incentives to the people who choose to be on a membership plan.I like to think of the direction we are going as similar to the DLC model that single player games such as Skyrim and Borderlands 2 use.
If I have a lifetime subscription to the game, will there be any perks for my being a lifetime member?Joel: Absolutely, all lifetime subscribers will receive Funcom Points (the currency we use in our store) every month, which can be used to purchase anything that I mentioned earlier. Finally they also receive an XP boost item, which works similar to a rested XP bonus from other games for a limited time each day. This XP boosting item is fully new to lifetimers and their discount used to be 10% on social items only. Will there be any significant changes to how players now will play the game compared to later on?Joel: When the Dreamworld technology was upgraded to include a cash shop for the Age of Conan free-to-play launch, it meant that TSW had a cash shop with very minimal work.


But as we are revmoving the subscription requirement, we have not made any changes to the core gameplay or lore. Up until this change, we have been fighting the stigma of having a subscription in an environment that has been increasingly against it.We tried the subscription route and we tried to be *responsible* about it, by delivering content to our player base every single month.
We still have a barrier to entry (client fee) which should limit undesirable elements like gold farmers or people who want to make troll accounts. Age of Conan does not take away so many of your options, but it does restrict some of the content past the core game to anyone who is not subscribed.The Secret World has a small client fee, and then you have access to everything.
After all, in just a few days the world is coming to an end and I can’t think of anything better than spend your final moments playing The Secret World.



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