City of Heroes will soon be joining the ranks of Western MMOs to convert to a hybrid free-to-play subscription model. NCsoft and Paragon Studios today revealed City of Heroes Freedom, launching later this year, which will convert the superhero MMO into a free-to-play title.
“Freedom is about getting more content into the hands of our players, whether they are subscribing or playing for free,” said Brian Clayton, Executive Producer at Paragon Studios. “To do this, we’ve looked at City of Heroes from the ground up and focused on three ways to enhance the experience by giving our players more choices, greater rewards and the best content we've ever produced. And for the first time ever, players can choose to enjoy more than seven years of content for free.”
Freedom isn't the only thing new coming to City of Heroes, though. To coincide with the shift to free-to-play, Paragon will also be releasing the latest free expansion for the game--Issue 21: Convergence.
With Convergence players will see a host of new features, including the new dynamic co-op zone First Ward, the highly-anticipated Underground Incarnate Trial, two full costume sets, a new Power Set, a revamped starting experience and an updated character creator.
Beginning July 1, 2011 and continuing until the release of Freedom, current subscribers will begin earning 400 Paragon Points each month, which can be used in the Paragon Market--a shop co-developed by payment experts PlaySpan--to purchase costumes, items, services and consumables.
Players interested in becoming a City of Heroes Freedom VIP will be able to do so by signing up for the monthly subscription. Current subscribers will be automatically converted to VIP status when Freedom goes live.
City of Heroes Freedom and Issue 21: Convergence will both be playable for the first time at the San Diego Comic Con in July.