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Torchlight MMO Needs No Subscription

TORCHLIGHT Screenshot - 868424

Good news for those subscribed to nine different MMOs: The upcoming Torchlight MMO game will not use a subscription model. The decision comes a few days after Blizzard said there was still room for another subscription-based game, but ultimately that would end with World of Warcraft benefiting.

Runic Games CEO Max Schaefer talked to Charge Shot about the game, and a comparison with World of Warcraft was brought up. “You can’t really approach any MMO project without taking into account World of Warcraft,” said Schaefer. “It’s the elephant in the room of every MMO company. I don’t think really anyone can do [subscriptions] anymore because pretty much everyone that does subscriptions has one for WoW.”

There you have it. Torchlight MMO will not require a subscription, and that's a good move.

Firstly, any competition is good competition. But competing with the bargaining chip of no monthly fees is practically the only way to garner attention in the massively populated MMO world—unless you launch new expansion packs every other day. Supposedly, the majority of MMORPG players refuse to subscribe to more than one game, so what better way to win them over than a free service with a series that has scored well on both PC and console? Secondly, no subscription means those who probably wouldn't buy a game because of persistent fees may buy it if that restriction is removed.

Still, Schaefer is optimistic about the action RPG genre of his game and sees the outing as an opportunity to fill a gap in the market: “The action RPG genre is still pretty thin. I think that there’s more demand than there is product,” he said. “I think that there are enough differences that we can co exist, but it is certainly something that you can’t ignore.”

The Torchlight MMO was announced way back in 2009 and still has no set release date. Torchlight 2 is set to launch this summer.

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Stuart Macdonald
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