Should You Subscribe to LotRO?

February 27, 2012

General, LOTRO Guides, Opinions

Besides being in the beta, my first LotRO experience was the rise of free to play in September 2010.  I enjoyed the beta but didn’t have the money for a monthly fee at the time.  I then forgot all about this amazing game until I heard it was going free to play.  I was so excited about this and I immediately looked for fan sites, reviews and really anything I could get my hands on before I could get back to LotRO.  This is when I found CSTM and have loved them ever since.  I absolutely made sure that I would be available on September 10th for the free to play launch.

I decided that I would get on one of the new servers so that I would not be way behind everyone else and settled on Imladris.   Now came the tough part, finding a class that I liked.  I decided I would play a man champion because of the advertised easy difficulty level.  I decided that I loved this class and stuck with him till level 20.  I stopped at level 20 because I could not decide if I wanted to buy the lone lands or subscribe to LotRO.  A few months later, I decided that I would buy the zone because at this time there had not been a new zone since the update was the first free to subscriber zone in well over a year.  This caused me to think that a subscription would not be worth much if that was how often I would get new free content as a subscriber.

Jumping forward a year I had finally got to the level 65 cap a week before Isengard came out.  I had already pre-ordered the Rise of Isengard Legendary Edition.  In the past year I had spent over $300 on zones and expansions.  This is about the same amount I would have spent with a subscription and expansions.  Even though a subscription would have given me more features for the same price I knew that I would never have to buy the zones or expansions again which would not have been true if i stopped my subscription.

Even though the multi-month deal has been aroud for a while, I did not know about it till a few months ago.   It is a game changer to how we should all look at subscriptions.  I did not know that this plan was such a good one till I spent the time to do the math.  If you get three or more months then you can get a monthly fee of $10 instead of the usual $15.  This is a really big deal because not only are you saving $5 a month you are also getting around $6.50 in Turbine Points (500 TP a month).  (Note that the calculation is done by comparing other point deals of a similar amount to the amount the player is receiving every month.)

Since there is a multi-month offer you are now only really paying around $3.50 a month that you will not get back.  The rest of the monthly fee is being spent automatically on points that you can spend on a permanent item.  So what do you get for only $3.50 a month in LotRO?

I am going to start with rested XP because this is really (to me) worth the full $10 a month by itself.  It essentially allows you to get twice as much experience as a non-VIP player.  This can also be stacked with the 25% Isengard pre-order boost on NPC kills.  This allows you to level your character at a much faster rate than normal and is really nice when going through areas/zones you don’t like very much.

For only $3.50 a month you also get to use swift travel around LotRO.  This allows you to go around the map very quickly and keeps LotRO fun and interesting.  It makes it so that you don’t have to literally personally go across Middle-Earth again and again. You can just teleport there and be ready for questing once more.  Swift travel is especially helpful when you are doing the epic story because you have to go back and forth across Middle-Earth a lot.

Getting a subscription also lets players go on the “good” side in the Ettenmoors (meaning you can play your primary character – not a monster character).  Keep in mind that the good side plays very differently from the evil.  Even if you play monster play regularly, playing on the other side can be a nice change of pace.  As a subscriber you can also buy perks with your destiny points earned in the Moors on both sides.  The perks allow you to get a slight edge against the other players/NPC’s.

Also subscribing to LotRO is great if you are wanting to try out several monster play classes.  Instead of buying all the classes, you can try (and keep) each of them for only $3.50 a month.  This is a great deal because if you bought all the classes then it would cost you $40 and instead you got them all for $3.50.

Keep in mind that you also get many of the things that Free to Play players have to buy included in your subscription.  You get more character slots, priority log in, the gold cap removed, traits expanded, all the skirmishes and full access to tech support.  Even though I have not needed to use tech support since the beta, it is nice to know that you have it incase something terrible happens.

Even though I have moved to VIP and am loving it, keep in mind that premium is still a viable option.   The benefits of course are that you get to keep everything you pay for permanently and that is always comforting.  I had premium for a year and enjoyed it a lot but when I did the math I realized that since I had the money it seemed like a much better option to get a subscription.  If you don’t think you will like the VIP only features then maybe it is not worth it for you and that is obviously your choice to make.

The subscription is currently an amazing deal considering that you are only using $3.50 a month for a ton of features and you get around $6.50 in turbine points every month for a grand total of $10 a month on the three month plan.  I cannot stress enough how much I enjoy having the VIP features while knowing that I am only losing $3.50 a month and the rest I get keep forever.  The offer is made even better since Turbine says it is going to try to release subscriber only content every year from now on.  I think now is the perfect time to upgrade your account to VIP right before the new zone in Update 6 that all subscribers will get absolutely free.

I hope that I have convinced many players to jump on the subscription wagon to start saving money and enjoy new features.

I look forward to seeing all of you next week in “How to be a Monster- Days 6 and 7” where I will talk about getting to Ranks 2 and 3, leading groups and raids, and another attempt on the hardest boss in LotRO.

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Avatar of Andang

About Andang

A lifelong Tolkien fan, Andang loves just about anything related to Tolkien. Andang is also a lifelong hardcore gamer with a huge love for any genre of game, as long as it is good. Andang currently writes for A Casual Stroll to Mordor and Middle-Earth Network's Gaming Team. He is also a co-host on Random Fandom, a weekly news podcast here on Middle-Earth Network. You can also find Andang on his YouTube channel and his Facebook page and if all that is not enough he has a twitter as well.

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79 Responses to “Should You Subscribe to LotRO?”

  1. Adhrean Says:

    This is a great article for players like me, who have been hovering over the Premium tag for a long time, to see the perks and be convinced that VIP should be given a try, even if only for a couple of months. I hope to be VIP within the next month, so I get the new region for free. But most of all, it’s the extra character slots and the 500TP a month that I really want! Thanks for the article, cheers.

    Reply

  2. Avatar of
    Periannath Says:

    Some really good points here Andang, as a current subscriber I can’t argue with any of them.

    If someone has only been Free to play and they’re wavering about going VIP then I think there’s another cost option in between premium and staying VIP, a kind of hyper-premium in a way.

    First, take a 3 months VIP deal. Just in terms of the TP costs of unlocking access to all bags, removing the gold cap and unlocking traits slots on all of your characters this $30 is an absolute no-brainer the way I see it. You’ll have 1500TP at the end of your 3 months and for this plan to work you have to be disciplined enough not to have spent them! (No dropping a swift 95 on riding skill, run until 20, its good for you….allegedly)

    Next, at some point before the end of your VIP subscription, buy the legendary edition of Isengard. This gives you permanent access to the paths of the fellowship zones and Mirkwood (As well as Isengard of course) AND another 1000TP. So, at the end of 3 months you’ve got a bunch of zones you already own and 2500TP (a lot more probably, as you’ll be picking them up as you go). Hang onto those TP and the next time there’s a zone sale then load up, get as many zones as you can with your TP that you don’t already have.

    Do this and you’ll only have spent $80 to have almost full permanent access to the game, only missing your blue bar. Sure, you’ll still have to buy any extra expansions, but most VIP players are pre-ordering those for the benefits they give anyway. You won’t be a permanent VIP player by trying this route, but you’ll have spent a lot less than many other premium players. Worth thinking about for anyone who is wavering and wondering.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Periannath- I like the idea of hyper-premium and I think you pose some great points.

      Reply

      • eboe Says:

        this is what I have, and honestly I’m thinking of resubbing. Guess I got a taste of the Moors on freep and want more haha. Plus I want to be able to make more alts and not have to buy traits for them…

        Reply

        • Avatar of Andang
          Andang Says:

          @eboe- I know the fealing of wanting more of the Moors as it is a lot of fun on both sides. It is also very alt friendly to have a subscription by not having to buy the trait slots for that class.

          Reply

  3. Avatar of
    Periannath Says:

    Have to say as well Andang, your monster posts have got me to try Monster play for the first time and helped me stay patient with the whole process while I find my feet too. Top stuff!

    Reply

  4. Atzumo Says:

    Nice article, but I think it’s better to buy whatever areas you want to quest in (evendim and angmar are mandatory, with enedwaith) and the expansions (as a vip you have to buy them anyways), then be vip for a month or three, make all the characters you want and level them up to 20 so you don’t have to buy the riding skill and then cancel your subscription. You’ll conserve the inventory bags, the traits slots and the money cap. You’ll still have to pay for the last two craft guild rep level and lose the rest xp, but that’s not such a big deal. The skirms you’ll have to buy may or may not be an issue.

    My opinion anyways

    Reply

  5. Avatar of damper
    damper Says:

    Nice article Andang!

    I’m now in my 2nd week of a 60-day VIP-stint and loving every moment of it. Since I don’t have a creditcard and I live in Europe I decided to go with the 60 day card from the turbinestore, payed with paypal. It was a little cheaper then the 60 day option via the paybycash system, and a Dutch guy is cheap, no? I had the key within 5 minutes via email, no problems whatsoever.

    It is awesome to be able to go anywhere and not worry about cash anymore, I had over 2,5g in my cashoverflow with my main so it’s nice to have that back :) It’s also very cool to be able to quest in area’s other than the ones I purchased with MoM and RoI (I bought Evendim with TP). I also had bought some trait-slots for one toon and one bag for all, great that I don’t have to do that ever again (at least not until I roll another toon after VIP has expired :)).

    However, I was really conscious on only VIP-ing for a short period, just for all the benefits. But now they’ve announced the new area and I fear it’ll be released just after my VIP period ends… Ah well, the way you described the multi-month plan sounds like i’ll become a VIP again after this period ends :)

    Reply

  6. Lilliandil Says:

    I personally am a big fan of the F2P model. If you know you’re going to be a long time player of this game and you have the time to put into deeds, it’s wonderful. I have only had one month of VIP in over a year of playing.

    That said, there are moments where I wish I had VIP. I couldn’t do certain skirms or instances for a long time, I had to stop leveling until I had enough TP to buy my next quest pack. You have to keep at it. Thank you so much for the article, it brings back some memories of my journey in LOTRO and how I got here as premium. :)

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Lilliandil- I am a fan of F2P as well as there really is no bad way to pay for LotRO. I also am glad to have brought back some memories of LotRO and I hope LotRO continues to be a great game.

      Reply

  7. Lapis Says:

    What I really enjoy about LOTRO’s payment options is that you can really choose the one that best fits your wallet and playstyle and still be able to play at the others’ level.

    So, while you’re enjoying your VIP I am enjoying my premium, I’ve been playing since f2p launch and with less than 30$ I own most of the game (and I’m sitting on 4500 TPs I’m not willing to spend in skirmishes). If I could afford it I’d probably go VIP but since I can’t.. I’m really loving how this game allows me to have fun with such a little expense :)

    Reply

  8. Landonil Says:

    I normally just pay for VIP when I know I will have a chance to play for a while. You only need to pay once to get the gold cap removed and get extra character slots. I save up on TP’s and just recently spent some I had from the VIP payments on the Lothlorien quest pack since I don’t have the time to play non-stop as I would when I pay for VIP.

    Reply

  9. Alen Says:

    I have been a Premium player since February 2011. I had tired of WoW, and when I read about the F2P model of LotRO, I was really intrigued. In the year of play, I have purchased the MoM expansion box for $20, Rise of Isengard legendary edition on Black Friday for $25, and just recently purchased a points card for $20.

    During the month of VIP I had after registering the MoM key, I created the characters I wanted on my main server to receive the character unlocks that occur with that process. I now have all of the zones and expansions except for Angmar and Forochel. When I look back on the hundreds of dollars spent on Warcraft over the years, I get sick thinking about it, and I like that LotRO gives frugal players like me an option to enjoy the game.

    I do want to help support Turbine, and will continue to purchase expansions as they are released, but a lot of the convenience and appearance options available through the store do not appeal to me, so I don’t have much need for for purchasing tons of points. I like the slower pace of LotRO, so swift travel, rested xp, and accelerators are not that much of a draw to me. Nothing pleased me more during my first month of play and would see comments on the official forums encouraging new players to slow down and enjoy the game – it’s not a race. :)

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Alen- I completely agree with saving money. I was premium for a year and loved knowing that I would not have to buy stuff again. I agree that VIP is not for everyone and should that is why I love the F2P model Turbine has put in place. I agree that many people should slow down and enjoy every corner of this very fun game. I am never in a race on my main (it is still only lvl 74) but I like to go a little faster on my alts and so that is why I mentioned all the things to speed up LotRO.

      Reply

  10. scott Says:

    I totally agree that VIP is the way to go in LOTRO, however, I’ve been VIP for 3 years and dropped to premium a few months back. I have purchsed every skirmish except two (attack at dawn and icy crevice) and I only need Forochel and the Trollshaws to own every questpack. I have 3 75s, 2 67s a 51 and a 41. Once I buy these last 4 items, I not sure what else VIP will bring me as I don’t care about PvP. I’m actualy at 700 TP now and I’m saving them for the new map Update 6, which I hope will be in the same price range as the other quest packs, which are around 595 TP.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Scott- That is a very valid way to pay Scott. I was premium for a year and bought almost everything and decided I would try VIP and have loved it ever since. That is only my opinion though as not everyone wants the perks of VIP or maybe they don’t want to pay a monthly fee. Really there is no bad way to pay for LotRO.

      Reply

    • eboe Says:

      Just an FYI, on Bullroarer the new region costs 1495 TP, presumably because it includes a 6-man instance…

      Reply

      • Avatar of Andang
        Andang Says:

        @eboe- I saw that…I think it might go down in price but you never know. It does have the most improvements coming out of all the previous new zones that were not expansions. I am looking forward to update six and will buy it regardless of the cost.

        Reply

  11. Cluck Says:

    I went VIP for a month to unlock swift travel, bags and get the free riding skill for 4 toons. However, I’m perfectly happy without full access now, I can’t see any reason whatsoever to go VIP again. That being said, I’d be saying nothing of the sort if I hadn’t bought Isengard legendary expansion. Overall though I think it’s better to buy expansions and one month of VIP than keep paying for me, because it does get expensive very quickly otherwise.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Cluck- I agree that that is a very good way to stay Premium and yet get a few things a little cheaper. I will not be able to afford VIP forever and so I will eventually do a similar thing. That is why I love LotRO so much…there is really not a bad way to pay or play.

      Reply

  12. Harperella Says:

    VIP doesn’t mean the end of TP purchases. I’ve paid more on LOTRO post F2P than I ever paid for my 2 lifetimes.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Harperella- I have made a few purchases of TP as a VIP. I love that LotRO has so many ways to pay for the game.

      Reply

    • Avatar of Alinniel
      Alinniel Says:

      They are very sneaky about getting your money even when you are VIP. I’m not upset at Turbine for that. It’s what they need to do to be profitable. It’s that I’m terrible about wanting cosmetics, and pretty shineys, and not patient enough to wait for my 500 a month allowance to arrive. When they have the double point sales like on President’s Day. It’s hide the credit card or I’d buy it.

      Reply

      • Avatar of Andang
        Andang Says:

        @carimac- I understand what you mean by Turbine doing things for “getting your money even when you are VIP”. I think that your example however is more fan service than anything else. I am always surprised by how many sales Turbine has and I agree with you about having to hide the credit card. There are so many aspects to this game and when you get a deal on one it is hard to resist because you know that ther is still something that you will spend with the monthly points. This allows you to justify your purchase of the points/item that you are getting. Thank you for this comment carimac.

        Reply

  13. scott Says:

    The only downside for me to dropping my VIP to premium, is that I have over 159,000 destiny points I can’t use. I wish Turbine would change the rules on this. Let me spend what I have earned, but I’m ok with them preventing me from earning more.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Scott- I really wish Turbine would put in a in-store item that would allow you to spend your destiny points. That had to be one of the most agrivating things for me as a non subscriber.

      Reply

    • eboe Says:

      Now is a great time to make a Freaver while you can still use your DP to buy skills for it… once update 6 comes, no more using destiny on your creeps…

      Reply

      • Avatar of Andang
        Andang Says:

        @eboe- A great point, now is the time to use your destiny points in the Moors because you will not be able to use them there again.

        Reply

  14. Tony Says:

    I used to be VIP, but am now Premium. There are several things I miss… it’d be nice to be able to play a Freep in PvMP for example, using Destiny Points, rest XP, not having to buy crafting guild status (at least it’s once, I only buy it when I need it for a character).

    But I’ve found that in the long run it’d be cheaper for me to just buy points on sale and then buy the core things I care about — skirmishes, quests and instances. I’ve not HAD to spend any money in the in-game store in quite some time (I bought the web-store version of the expansion, if you want to count it — but so did anyone with VIP).

    It works out well IF I’m playing a character I previously used as a VIP. But when I log onto once I’ve created since then you start to really miss things. I’ve been thinking about buying another month, logging all of my new characters in and using up my destiny points.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Tony- I agree that droping from VIP to Premium is a great model yet with drawbacks as you mentined. I wish that Turbine made some of those things unlock perminately just from subscribing to LotRO. I also realize that Turbine has to make money though so I understand why they have to do that to the players.

      Reply

  15. Rinvan Says:

    @Harperella

    Yes I have also spent about double what what my $199 lifetime sub cost in the cash shop when the game went F2P.

    The game only cost me $100 last year. ($50 for TP & $50 for Isengard)

    Reply

  16. Avatar of costanandrei
    costanandrei Says:

    I think the best way to go VIP is as you did: reach a high level and be sure that the spent money are going in the right place. Starting the game as a VIP I think it’s a waste of money just because you don’t need much of the VIP stuff. You can get to lvl 30 without any problem just by spending the tp earned from deeds.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @costanandrei- I completely agree that you need to be a min of 30 before you subscribe. I would probubly recomend even higher than that. I think that it would be a huge waste of money because you really don’t need to buy much with real money before around level 40 in my opinion.

      Reply

  17. Avatar of Chris Moran
    Chris Moran Says:

    I will forever be happy I had the chance to get the lifetime/founder status, and generally wish they made it available again somehow. I don’t spent a ton of TP, so I should be good for all expansions, but I would love to have some friends be able to male an initial investment and then just worry about playing. I do not like subscriptions… and i would not likely have been able to maintain a monthly for this long.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Chris Moran- I wish I had that oporunity to get founder. I know most founders still spend a lot on LotRO but that is great because you are suporting Turbine.

      Reply

  18. Varia of Riddermark Says:

    I chose VIP early on. I realize there are more stragic ways I could be spending my money, but I’ve always had a “vote with your wallet” mentality. Maybe it was too many PBS pledge drives, but I like this game enough I feel it is worth paying monthly for. It is certainly cheaper than coffee or going to the movies.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Varia of Riddermark- I like the vote with your wallet mentality and keep watching PBS because those guys work hard for what they get paid. And you also make great points compairing the subscription to the real world.

      Reply

  19. royalbob of dwarrowdelf Says:

    Was able get all the quests packs with only 2 months VIP doing deeds (with 1 character. just leveling not grinding deeds) and Isengard Super Edition.

    Under $100 for almost everything. Only feature I miss is more skirms and pvmp, but I’ll be able to get the skirms eventually.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @royalbob- I am glad that you have a payment model that works well for you. I love the fact that Turbine has so many ways you can pay for the game.

      Reply

      • royalbob of dwarrowdelf Says:

        Only reason that I play the game. I like how if I take a break for a month or 2 that I don’t have to pay if I want to login every once in awhile. Or when I’m at lvl cap and don’t want to play an alt, I can stand around wasting time without spending money. I also love Turbine for this reason.

        Reply

    • royalbob of dwarrowdelf Says:

      (forgot to mention….Great Article!)

      Went back and looked how much I spent and how I got there:

      Look for sales on Amazon and other websites for Moria if you do not have it already. Unless something has changed since f2p launch, then it should come with 30 days VIP, Moria, and some other stuff.

      I’m not sure if this is the cheapest way to go anymore though with the packages that are coming out bundling quests together.

      Was lucky when f2p came out, Amazon was selling Moria for $10 (VIP cost $15 at the time). Hit 65 paying only $10, then ended up buying VIP again later for alts and pvmp.

      VIP isn’t required, but I HIGHLY suggest getting it for at least 1 month. So much stays unlocked even after VIP runs out. I know a few 75s that have never gotten VIP, but it wasn’t easy. They still can’t use fast travels from stables.

      Moria: $10
      VIP 2 Months: $30
      Isengard: $50
      Total: $90*

      Will be getting VIP again when River comes out.

      *I did win 1,000 Turbine Points in a contest and took advantage of HUGE holiday sales when f2p first came out.

      Reply

  20. Aldarionn Says:

    Thanks Andang. You definetely convinced me to go VIP. Especially since I have 3 of my 5 chars that don’t have the VIP perks. Since I already have all quests packs and expansions I’m gonna do the 3 month deal to get the 1500 TP and the other perks.

    I do have a question though, if I make 2 more characters while I’m VIP and return in 3 months time to Premium, am I able to use those 2 characters since they are already created? Or do I have to buy the extra character slot to continue using them?

    Reply

    • andras Says:

      you need to buy extra character slots to free the 2 characters from “hibernation”

      Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Aldarionn- You can use those characters but you can still only make three. What I mean by this is that you have to delete 3 characters in order to make a new one. Also I think you have to buy 3 new slots in order to make a new one if you only should have 3 of the 5 when VIP ends.
      Anyway yes, you get to keep all characters created in VIP. Turbine does not limit you from playing characters you make they just limit things on the characters.

      Reply

      • Maliander Says:

        I just (this year) downgraded from VIP to premium and had to choose which 7 characters I wanted to keep out of the 9 I had while VIP. The 2 locked characters are unplayable at the end of my character list and can be unlocked by buying additional character slots. Full info for those interested:
        Pre-VIP: 7 character slots (2 from free, 1 from premium, 4 from extra slots, all filled. My name is Maliander and I’m an altoholic :)
        During VIP: 9 character slots (2 extra from VIP, all characters played to ensure they received benefits)
        Post-VIP: 7 character slots (I chose same 7 as before VIP, only created extra 2 characters in case I ever bought more slots)

        Note that monsters created while VIP have a similar treatment, they cannot be played again until that monsters’ class is unlocked in the store.

        Reply

  21. Eleasar Says:

    300$ is very much… I am Premium user (who was 6 month VIP due to good deals on codemasters game cards in some stores). All in all i have every region, warden and rune ceeper, 5 char slots – all of them have all traits and stuff, gold cap removed and whatever. Got some skirmishes, all expansions, some guild crafting tokens…

    Missing is of course the PVMP, destiny points and 4 or so skirmishes. All the (important) rest i have.

    But i spend only around 70€ which would be around 100$ for playing now for 1,5 years and having all that i need. If you look for sales and stuff you should be able to have everything for way less – and keep it forever – even if you are not anymore VIP.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Eleasar- I realize sales are great and I am glad you only had to spend around $100. I love Turbine’s model because if you grind for deeds you could really never have to pay a dime for this amazing game.

      Reply

  22. Mirja Says:

    I am currently premium – I subscribed to Lotro for a while in 2007, and came back last spring. I am not 100% sure how much I have spent, but since I came back I’ve bought all zones, the legendary Isengard edition, all skirmishes, warden+RK class, 100 slots of shared storage and wardrobe, and a goat (that’s what I remember at the top of my head). Oh, and I subscribed for a month to unlock some features on two new characters. And I bought crafting guild acess for.. 4 guilds? In short, I am not worried about not supporting Turbine enough, and probably I could have gotten VIP for the same money. My reasons to be premium instead:

    1. I don’t want rested xp. I love lvling with my RL friend, moving through zones and being more or less right lvl for it. I like the pocket item that came with Isengard which I can use on alts, but I don’t use it on my main. I really like that Lotro makes it up to me if I want these kinds of shortened leveling times or not.

    2. It varies greatly how much time I can play. A subscription makes me feel I should play to make the most of it, while buying a zone and owning it forever feels like I can take my time. I am aware that this is probably all psychological/in my head, but that’s where I live ^^

    Reply

  23. Tony Says:

    Your 2nd point is a big one. I’ve subbed with LOTRO, SWTOR, WOW, Age of Conan, Fallen Earth, whatever else… and the problem is that I have NO IDEA ahead of time what my playing schedule will be like. I might be able to play a few times a week, I might be able to play once a month.

    And in the latter case (even sometimes the former case), I feel like I’ve wasted my money. I feel almost an obligation to log in at times when maybe I don’t even want to — which makes me like the game less.

    I like this sort of model in that sense. I can come and go as I please and use what I bought at the times that work best for my schedule.

    Reply

  24. Aerynne Says:

    I have to say, buying the lifetime subscription when this game first came out was one of my smarter MMO-moves. Although I play a lot of other MMOs, I always know I can come back to LotRO and have all of the VIP benefits. Well worth the initial cost!

    Reply

  25. Osdor Says:

    There is occasionally a special offer for 12 months VIP for $99. That’s the rate I’m on – it renews at that rate each year.

    Using your calculations of $6.50 for your 500 TP, it ends up costing me effectively $1.75 a month for VIP :)

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Osdor- I knew that this existed yet I since it was not currently availiable I decided not to mention it. Thank you though for letting everyone know about this…saves me some work…and math.

      Reply

  26. susan Says:

    I started out f2p and quickly went to sub after a month as I like to support games that I like. I have canceled my subs during the whole shop fiasco but have a few months left on them before it runs out. In the meantime I am preparing for the downsizing and loss of perks.

    Because I had bought expansions and one char slot, I will be able to keep all but one of my chars open, (not includ monster play) which is the biggest relief. Still the loss of those crafting abilities on the one is a bummer.

    add in the loss of expansion packs not bought with real money it will be a trial to go f2p, but I am determined to get off the paying treadmill for awhile. I can alway resub later or buy expansion packs during sales.

    Reply

  27. Andy Says:

    One of the things I really like about LoTRO is that you dont get hammered should you decide to move from being subbed to unsubbed. Just one month timed right will unlock a huge amount of stuff that you get to keep once the sub time expires. Being so relaxed I think actually encourages people to sub for longer. The only downside to subbing is you cant make use or questpack sales in preparation for when you are unsubbed.

    I was subbed to wow since back in vanilla and the focus of that is very much level fast and either raid or pvp, if you dont do either then not much really to do. They killed pvp for me back in vanilla so focus was mainly raiding but the boss fights now just lack the epicness of vanilla or tbc.

    SWTOR weaned me off the wow crack and as someone that likes a bit of story in the gameplay I dont feel the urge to level fast. One of the reasons I like lotro is there’s not the focus on raids or pvp thats detrimental to those that prefer the journey to the destination.

    I played champs online for a bit when it went f2p and was very happy running a silver/f2p archetype character rather than a custom one which were gold/paid sub only. I subbed for a month and had to upgrade my character to gold level to play them. Now when that month ended I was expected to pay cash for a token to respec them back into silver, needless to say I walked away from that game more than a little disgusted. Not sure if cryptic are doing a similar thing with sto but a lifetime on that means I’ve been treating it like a f2p title for a good while now.

    In short lotro’s sub vs f2p model has it about right. Encourages the casual gamer who will dip in from time to time to sub as and when they want and doesnt punish them should they stop for whatever reason. This is probably why some of the more expensive store items such as mounts are per character.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Andy- I agree that LotRO has the best F2P model on the market today. They really went into an unsure place with DDO and then went even further with LotRO. I love that DDO had a decline so that LotRO went F2P. I now love both games and look forward to see what happens in both expansions latter this year.

      Reply

  28. Windpaw Says:

    My MMO time has tanked a little of late, but I already know that when the next update hits, I’ll be VIPing it again – at least for a little while.

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Windpaw- I think that there will be many people that will be re-subing when update 6 comes out even if they have the required Turbine points for the zone.

      Reply

  29. Strygaric Says:

    Andang,

    One other thing you may edit into the post. If you are VIP, you get access to Bullroarer – a great benefit if you are into testing things before they hit the live servers.

    Just my two cents ;)

    Reply

    • Avatar of Andang
      Andang Says:

      @Strygaric- Thanks for the point Strygaric, while I might not edit the post I know that this feature is huge for some people. I personally don’t like to go through a zone before it is officially finished but I know that a lot of people love this. Thanks for your two cents Strygaric.

      Reply

  30. Meayen Says:

    I am curious, you say it only cost 3.50 a month where you get this number from?

    Reply

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    [...] to Andang over at our fantastic partners Casual Stroll to Mordor, whose post on why he became a VIP player distilled my own thinking on deals and value just in time to write this [...]

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