TERA Goes Free To Play

TERA Goes Free To Play

Bluehole Studio promises there'll be no level cap or content restrictions for the free version of TERA.

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In a move that probably isn't going to surprise too many people, TERA, the Korean fantasy MMO developed by Bluehole Studio, has become the latest in a series of titles to offer an alternative free-to-play mode alongside its regular paid subscriptions.

Starting in February, TERA players will be able to switch their account over to a free-to-play version of the game called TERA: Rising. The free version won't have any content restrictions or a level cap, and will feature a new in-game store with character customization options and in-game consumables. Players who decide to stick with a paid subscription can look forward to extra dungeon rewards, bonus quests, store discounts and multiple other extras for $14.99 USD per month. More details can be found at TERA's website.

TERA originally launched in South Korea way back in January of 2011, but made its way to Europe and North America in May of 2012 through a publishing deal with En Masse Entertainment and Game Forge. The game itself received decent reviews, and our own John Funk described the game as "a breath of fresh air" for the MMO genre despite having some issues with repetitive quests.

Source: Gamasutra

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Surprised the subscription lasted this long to be honest.

some of these MMOs were in my eye but the monthly fee was always the big turn off. now i have guild wars 2 and i sure enjoy this game very much.

Been wanting to try it out so now's the time I suppose

DVS BSTrD:
Surprised the subscription lasted this long to be honest.

This.

It's a decent game. The combat is fun and pretty interesting -- especially when you get into groups. Can get a little repetitive though. I remember growing tired of fighting the same enemies (BUT with a different color palette) over and over.

I played TERA for a couple of months when it came out. Fun, but it couldn't hold my attention for terribly long with the cost involved.

This is exactly the thing that will bring a player like myself back. Good on them.

I'm also one of the people that played for a couple months, but decided it wasn't worth the subscription cost. This will probably get me back in the game. I like tera quite a bit.

Hah i knew it. This is one of the reasons i held off on buying TERA, i knew that someday this would happen.

Well, off to go download it and play around until PSO2 comes out in the US.

Hardly surprising, i played for a few weeks, the combat was nice but other than that it was all pretty much kill/collect x amount of things.

Cool, I wanted to try it but the subscription fee put me off, I'm enjoying GW2 but I'd like to take a break and try TERA, it looks grindy as hell, but the combat seems really cool

funny, i was in a tera thread once on /vg/, everyone was talking about how greedy this games cash shop was, that or the fact that you needed to pay monthly and then pay the cash shop for stuff.

kinda like tf2 really, no idea why they bring out the cash shop first wait and then make the game free to play, kinda greedy really.

edtit: coming to think about it it still lasted longer the n swtor did, that's something of an accomplishment.

Huzzah! Now I can have my lancer back without forking over my wallet!
...I wonder if this will be enough to drag my woman out of Guild Wars 2 for a while...

While I generally found it to be a standard post-WoW era Korean grinder (with rates tweaked for NA audiences) with better than average combat, I can guarantee that any "fresh air" in the combat scheme was blown away by a giant ill wind smelling of rank detritus: En Masse's ridiculous cash shop.

In one of the most egregious attempts yet, TERA's Western publishers decided not only to require a subscription fee (which, if that was all they had done I would have lauded them) but to create a cash shop that was insanely expensive and honestly insulting. Every month they had "Specials" that offered typically a $25 Mount, plus a weapon skin or costume that works only once for a given race, class, or character (though, repeatedly on the same one once purchased) for around $10-15 each. Even holiday content and special event content was sold for a premium price. To buy all the in-game content available each month it would mean more than $100 in many cases. Of course, this prompted many users including myself to quit, but since the barrier to profit it so low in these cases and it only takes a handful of "useful idiots' who will open their wallet for anything, the switch to "F2P" is a no-brainer.

It doesn't matter that it is "cosmetic", we as players absolutely need to refuse to support companies that use these tactics. I'm so tired of the unending greed that is ruining our virtual worlds. MMOs came to prominence in the West (including WoW's meteoric rise) on selling an "All you can eat" subscription fee per month. You paid your $9-15+ and you had access to everything in the game world and continual updates thereof, regardless of it being cosmetic. That is a good investment for the player and a good platform for developers. What's better is that it is fair and respectful of whatever the player wishes to do in the game world - a player who pays their $15 and wants to collect all the fancy clothes for roleplaying is just as welcome to do so on their "admission ticket" as one who wants to PVP in an arena setting all day.

Now, developers feel they have the right to squeeze the playerbase as much as possible for profit. Under the guise of the "F2P" mode it becomes even more egregious, where the original Korean paradigm of having players end up paying tens or hundreds of dollars a month through actual micro transactions have given way to players being charged $10 for everything. While "Asian grinders" operate under this mentality (Anything made/published by Nexon, Gpotato, Perfect World etc...), it has also infected many Western titles, such as The Secret World and the new "F2P" SWTOR (with its new "Cartel Packs" that cost around $5 each and only give you a CHANCE at certain in-game items! This is even the case for those who continue to pay the full subscription fee, in a prime example of how "F2P" transitions often ruin the value of the game.) So-called cosmetic content is the first victim of this as it is "not necessary", but taken to its logical extreme and say... have a game that skins the uber-loot the hardcore love to show off in the crappy level 1 "A rusty sword, busted chainmail" type skin (with all uber-stats of course intact) unless they pay for a packet of "revealing stones" to provide its "true, badass" appearance, and you'll instantly see those who say "just don't buy, you don't need it etc..." as whining hypocrites; as soon as it affects some part of the game they enjoy. Likewise, if a developer required real-money-transaction consumable keys in order to open a dungeon/raid or battleground/arena door, players who favor that content wouldn't be satisfied if roleplayers/collectors said "You don't NEED to raid. There are other things you can do that don't cost any extra money. So either pay up or shut up", echoing what is said to those of us who prefer content currently behind additional paywalls. At current, it ultimately has created a player-type bias in that say.. roleplayers, those who like to dress up their avatar, collectors and other MMO gamertypes are penalized and have to pay more to have access to all the game content they favor, where many others who don't enjoy "cosmetic" content have access to everything they care about without additional charges. The original, egalitarian and playstyle agnostic "pay a subscription, have complete access to in game content" paradigm has been dashed to pieces by neverending greed.

It is imperative for gamers to reject these money-grabs whenever they appear because validating them has only led to virtual worlds that are more expensive and offer less content, more barriers to enjoyment, and ultimately a horrible experience. We must demand more of our MMO developers and stop allowing "Oh, they just want to make more money" to be an acceptable reason to bend over and accept whatever egregious money-grabs come down the pipe. It is time for consumers to say "Enough!" and demand quality titles with sane monetization schemes, in both subscription and free-to-play models.

Twyce:

DVS BSTrD:
Surprised the subscription lasted this long to be honest.

This.

It's a decent game. The combat is fun and pretty interesting -- especially when you get into groups. Can get a little repetitive though. I remember growing tired of fighting the same enemies (BUT with a different color palette) over and over.

It does get very grindy toward the mid-end game. That's actually why I stopped playing. I had fun, but I couldn't justify $15 a month for a game I only felt like playing an hour or so a day when the grind started to bog me down.

felbot:
funny, i was in a tera thread once on /vg/, everyone was talking about how greedy this games cash shop was, that or the fact that you needed to pay monthly and then pay the cash shop for stuff.

The cash shop really was pretty exploitative. Hopefully they'll reconsider their costs.

Not entirely surprising really.

I think this is good though. I despise the subscription model, and hope it dies in the flaming pits of hell.

I'm actually happy to see this, as I played TERA when it first came out and thought it was fun even if it was a bit grindy, but not good enough to pay monthly for. That said I hope this isn't just a last attempt to get enough people to keep the game running and prevent a shutdown. Also contrary to what some people say, I am of the opinion that B2P/F2P does not equal bad, in fact the only MMOs I have ever enjoyed have fallen into one of those categories.

RanceJustice:
A large and beautiful post.

I agree with this guy 100%. Couldn't of said it better myself.

I first heard about TERA years before its release, before the Elin were announced. (That part is key.) I was very excited about it and was active on their forums for a long time, then the Popori were announced and I was a little skeptical but I could live with it. Soon afterwards they modified the Popori race so that the males and females were separate and the Elin were created.

Everybody knew TERA's mature style, it's skimpy outfits and suggestive animations. I had nothing against those, I wouldn't of been there on the forums every other day if I did. But creating a child-like race of girls in that environment? It stank and I and many others raised objections. We were justified by the, frankly, creepy undertones of those that posted their devotion and love to the race.

There was a massive forum war over it for months with thousands of posts on both sides, the mods basically started handing out bans left and right, too liberally in one's case, she lost her job over it. But nothing would ever be changed, since it was Bluehole and not En Masse that made the decisions in the end.

For me, it was the final straw when my favourite community manager ever who was with EM since the start, left with 6 months to go until the game launched. It just felt like a sign that my suspicions of everything going downhill were true.

I skipped it and haven't played a minute of that game to this day. I got Star Wars instead. It's debatable if that was a good choice, but at least I could play it without feeling like a sex offender.

Another one bites the dust eh?

On a more serious note, I may have to take a look at it now, I've heard good things about the combat.

I was just saying yesterday free to play would be great for this game then the announcement hit today, I've just bought the game (For veteran status) so these guys have made money out of this decision already.

I do like the game, I tried it once before during one of the betas and enjoyed it but the sub fee prevented me from buying the game since the quality of Guild Wars 2 made paying for any other game feel like a waste of my money.

I played it for a month like alot of people and still have it on my hard drive, so going back to to tera for a bit sounds like a good idea.

AldUK:

RanceJustice:
A large and beautiful post.

I agree with this guy 100%. Couldn't of said it better myself.

I first heard about TERA years before its release, before the Elin were announced. (That part is key.) I was very excited about it and was active on their forums for a long time, then the Popori were announced and I was a little skeptical but I could live with it. Soon afterwards they modified the Popori race so that the males and females were separate and the Elin were created.

Everybody knew TERA's mature style, it's skimpy outfits and suggestive animations. I had nothing against those, I wouldn't of been there on the forums every other day if I did. But creating a child-like race of girls in that environment? It stank and I and many others raised objections. We were justified by the, frankly, creepy undertones of those that posted their devotion and love to the race.

There was a massive forum war over it for months with thousands of posts on both sides, the mods basically started handing out bans left and right, too liberally in one's case, she lost her job over it. But nothing would ever be changed, since it was Bluehole and not En Masse that made the decisions in the end.

For me, it was the final straw when my favourite community manager ever who was with EM since the start, left with 6 months to go until the game launched. It just felt like a sign that my suspicions of everything going downhill were true.

I skipped it and haven't played a minute of that game to this day. I got Star Wars instead. It's debatable if that was a good choice, but at least I could play it without feeling like a sex offender.

What the hell are you talking about? The Elin were always a part of the game. En Masse never modified the Popori and Elin into two seperate races. En Masse simply published the game in the west with a few experience tweaks. If you were on that website for years and never thought to even take a peak at the always f2p Korean version then it's your own fault. Hell, look at any pre-release Korean trailer for the game and there are generally Elin all over the place.

Hell, it's about time.

I've been waiting forever for this. The sexy female characters will be mine! I'll even go as far as to make an Elin character, mainly because they offend a lot of you guys and I have a soft spot for any kind of media that others want to see banned, although it will be disappointing, playing with those censored shorts.

Yes, I find the Elin race's ample ass proportions slightly arousing. And no, I do not find real children arousing in the slightest. Almost like there was never any connection. (Because there wasn't.) Haters gonna hate.

EA should be taking notes, this is how you do f2p. They aren't taking much away from the game for f2p users, and they are adding more through micro transactions. No 'pay $5 for simple interface options'. You seriously have to pay $5 in that game to unlock the ability to hide or show your helm and then another 10 if you actually want quest rewards.

Actually thought about trying this game the other day, and now this happened.

WMDogma:
The free version won't have any content restrictions or a level cap, and will feature a new in-game store with character customization options and in-game consumables.

And that's usually where the catch is. You can do SO MUCH with the consumables alone. Like, massively nerf everyone's damage and offer consumables that restore it back to normal for a limited time. The same can be done with experience gain (and I bet my left ear that they are going to do exactly that) along with other in-game resources. You can also, say, cut something that strictly speaking isn't "content" and sell it back to the players. No, not it a crude and stupid way like EA did with TOR. This kind of stuff only works if it's subtle and doesn't really seem necessary at first glance or isn't really necessary for a casual player's point of view. Like, limiting the player's inventory or storage space, while leaving it large enough to seem fair and offering expansions for a small fee.
Basically, what I'm saying is that "no restictions on content and level cap" does not equal "is going to be fun to play without paying a dime". And before someone says, I do realise that nothing in this world is free, I just prefer to be asked to pay upfront, rather than milked with microtransactions.
...Says a man that spent $50 on Planetside 2, the big fat hypocrite that he is.

Anyway, the reason I never tried TERA is its' uneppealing (to me, at least) character design. I mean, I looked at screenshots and concept art and other things back when it was still new and saw skimpily dressed female elves with horns or whatever. Now, I prefer melee to magic or ranged combat in MMOs, and I also prefer female characters to male ones. Oh, and I also have some sort of heavy armor fetish. I really like to see women wearing heavy, functional plate armor. TERA's skimpy outfits just aren;t to my taste.

So yeah, I want to ask just one question: does at least some armor really look like armor when it's worn by female characters in this game? If yes, I might actually give it a shot. I heard the combat here is pretty good.

cool, now i can actually sink so time into the game and really give it a worth while try

VanQQisH:

AldUK:

RanceJustice:
A large and beautiful post.

I agree with this guy 100%. Couldn't of said it better myself.

I first heard about TERA years before its release, before the Elin were announced. (That part is key.) I was very excited about it and was active on their forums for a long time, then the Popori were announced and I was a little skeptical but I could live with it. Soon afterwards they modified the Popori race so that the males and females were separate and the Elin were created.

Everybody knew TERA's mature style, it's skimpy outfits and suggestive animations. I had nothing against those, I wouldn't of been there on the forums every other day if I did. But creating a child-like race of girls in that environment? It stank and I and many others raised objections. We were justified by the, frankly, creepy undertones of those that posted their devotion and love to the race.

There was a massive forum war over it for months with thousands of posts on both sides, the mods basically started handing out bans left and right, too liberally in one's case, she lost her job over it. But nothing would ever be changed, since it was Bluehole and not En Masse that made the decisions in the end.

For me, it was the final straw when my favourite community manager ever who was with EM since the start, left with 6 months to go until the game launched. It just felt like a sign that my suspicions of everything going downhill were true.

I skipped it and haven't played a minute of that game to this day. I got Star Wars instead. It's debatable if that was a good choice, but at least I could play it without feeling like a sex offender.

What the hell are you talking about? The Elin were always a part of the game. En Masse never modified the Popori and Elin into two seperate races. En Masse simply published the game in the west with a few experience tweaks. If you were on that website for years and never thought to even take a peak at the always f2p Korean version then it's your own fault. Hell, look at any pre-release Korean trailer for the game and there are generally Elin all over the place.

In 2007 when En Masse first put up its website, there was only 4 races announced, Human, Elf, Castanic and Aman. Baraka came after a few months, then Popori later. At first there were male and female Popori, but Bluehole didn't believe that female Popori had enough appeal and so created the Elin.

That is 'what the hell I am talking about.'

Gameforge??? Not touching it with a 10 foot pole
Wasnt that the game with the stolen code or it was just a rumor?

I really wanted to play this when it came out but I knew Guild Wars 2 would be superior, glad I finally can give it a shot and with no restrictions none the less. Unlike those pricks at Bioware.....

xefaros:
Gameforge??? Not touching it with a 10 foot pole
Wasnt that the game with the stolen code or it was just a rumor?

They did take assets from what would of been Lineage 3 and left NCSoft to form Bluehole. There was a court case and a settlement was paid.

I'm pretty interested in this, might give it a shot now that it's F2P. I like the idea of the more action based combat, and some of the environments look really nice.

Is this the game which everyone said was just female-elf porn?

KingsGambit:
Is this the game which everyone said was just female-elf porn?

To be fair, the High Elf males are pretty porn-tastic as well.
Every race females are pretty damn sexualized though so it is very biased anyway.

 

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