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DC Universe™ Online Free-To-Play. Your Way.™

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (John Walker)

Revenue POW!

Just in case there were any doubt left that the owners of Lego Universe were completely bonkers to just close down their subscription game without trying a free-to-play model, DC Universe is reporting a slight increase in revenue since they made the switch. The small matter of an extra 700% per day. Eurogamer spotted that the very enthusiastic Sony Online Entertainment president, John Smedley, tweeted his good news. News that will surely be yet another blow to the subs model.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Craig Pearson)

This is MY fortress of solitudeTweeting like he’s just snapped the first candid picture of Clark Kent’s super-undies, Sony President John Smedley has been documenting the effect going free-to-play has had on MMORPG biffer DC Universe: Online. It’s increased the concurrent playerbase by “1000%”. (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

More than anything, it makes me want a Freedom Force style DC game

As promised back in September, DC Universe Online is now free to play. While the combat isn’t quite as smooth as Mr Wayne’s moves in his Arkham adventures, it’s a lot more punchy than what passes for fisticuffs in most massively multiplayer efforts. Playing for free only provides two character slots and there are limits on inventory size among other things, including an inability to trade. You can see all the difference between paid and free subscription at the site.

I’d say it’s well worth a look for anyone interested in the characters and world, and it’s an entertaining solo game for a while if nothing else. I’m hoping this helps to repopulate Gotham since DCUO is the only online RPG I actually play. It’s lonely in there with no one to watch me brooding in the shadows. Get it here.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

The Dark Knight was a metaphor for subscription models

According to IGN, DC Universe Online is dropping subscription charges next month. The article quotes SOE executive producer Lorin Jameson as saying, “this was our preferred business model from day one”. Well, it’s taken seven months to implement that day one plan but it’s finally here. It does make sense. While SOE are claiming that a drop in subscriptions is not behind this move, anyone who has visited Gotham City lately can tell you it’s a bit of a ghost town. Is this enough to entice anyone in, or back in? Full details below.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

Giant boots and gloves are the mark of a manThis week, DC began rebuilding their entire fictional universe from the ground up. Every title in the range has rebooted to issue number one, severing the future from decades of convoluted and conflicting continuity. I give them twelve months before this ‘new’ universe has split into fifteen multiverses filled with amnesiac clones of every major character whose only differentiating feature will be inverted costume colours or a small beard. Meanwhile, nobody seems to have told SOE who are still expanding the old universe in DC Universe Online. The latest expansion, out for free on September 6th, adds the Green Lantern Corps to the game, along with the Light power set. Players can also join up with the Sinestro Corps if they are villainous sorts. Being evil means you’ll have a magical yellow chainsaw, as seen in the trailer below.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Quintin Smith)

Are all the MMORPGs in the world swapping to microtransactions and freemium payment models? The writing is on the wall, and the writing says “Give us your money! Give us your money in smaller increments, and with less constancy!” Which is a crazy thing to see written on any wall.

Anyway,> Massively report that Sony have just unlocked DC Universe’s in-game marketplace. Players now have the option of spending their real-world money on Vault Tickets, allowing them to access a special Vault instance at $1 each time, or Proto Repair-Bots, also costing $1, which patch up your character wherever you are. That is all. Nothing to see here, gents. Move along.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alec Meer)

Sony had some sort of little problem recently, I hear. Why, someone even claimed that, following a serious security compromise, all of their PlayStation online services had been offline for about six weeks, but they’ve got to have been jerking my chain. There’s no way a major technology firm could allow that> to happen, surely. I mean, that would simply be absurd. Absurd.

Things are on the mend now, anyway. Sony Online Entertainment’s MMOs – including Everquest II, Free Realms, DC Universe Online and Star Wars: Galaxies (I wonder if SWTOR will be the final nail in that ever-troubled coffin?) – have ‘only’ been offline since May 3, but have today sputtered back to life alongside PSN.
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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Quintin Smith)

We asked Richard Cobbett Wot He Thought of DC Universe Online yesterday, and his conclusion was (spoiler!) that while he enjoyed himself he wouldn’t be subscribing for a second month. I doubt the following will be enough to change his mind, but IGN has revealed the first boistrous mess of content coming to the game in February. There’s one of those fancy pre-rendered trailers, too. Excitements! (more…)

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Richard Cobbett)

If I were the Riddler, I'd totally abuse Batman's good nature. I'd be like 'Batman, riddle me this - where are my car keys?'

Over its 30 levels of BIFF! and POW! and KICK! and making things go SPLODE!, DC Universe Online gave me more awesome moments than any other MMORPG I’ve ever played. It also reinforced everything I hate about the genre. Let me explain, with words.>

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

Ever!> That’s according to the reliably twittery John Smedley. I am not sure what that actually says about the game, or SOE games generally, but it sounds positive. And… yes, we haven’t really taken a decent look at it yet, but I’ve heard some positive reports. We should get one of these layabouts on the job, eh?

What about you lot? Anyone playing? Any thoughts? Any critical quibbles? Anyone needing to team up with fellow RPS for some hot justice? (And I’ll totally sort the competition out tomorrow, closes tonight.)

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