South Korean developer NCSoft has announced that their popular fantasy MMO Aion: The Tower of Eternity will go free-to-play this February. Existing Aion subscribers will be granted veteran status and have access to all current content options for free, while new adventurers will have to pay for upgraded content.
NCSoft has been in talks with German publisher Gameforge regarding development of new content to retain the floundering Aion population.
“In the last few months the lands in Atreia have become more and more deserted,” stated NCSoft. “We want to reinvigorate the world of Aion and attract new adventurers to the towns to take to the skies as Daevas.” Daevas are awakened Demi-gods, former humans that have ascended, earned wings, mystical powers, and respawn abilities. If you’re not a Daeva, you’re a nobody. Or an NPC.
With big name MMOs like EverQuest, Aion, and TF2 joining the free-to play bandwagon, the real elephant in the room has been mute in such matters since a certain drop in subscriptions. Perhaps pandas and Chuck Norris endorsements will overcome whatever the other companies can throw at them anyway.