Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

Blizzard Launches WoW ''Starter Edition''

By - Source: Blizzard PR | B 38 comments

It's not a time-limited demo, but Blizzard's new World of Warcraft Starter Edition isn't exactly a free-to-play MMORPG, either.

Tuesday evening Blizzard revealed that it converted the previous 10- and 14-day demos of World of Warcraft into a pseudo free-to-play MMORPG, throwing the time restrictions out the door and letting new players roam about indefinitely. The news arrives after Blizzard's CEO Mike Morhaime revealed that 600,000 subscribers jumped ship shortly after the release of Cataclysm, possibly due to the "quick consumption" of the expansion.

Previous comments from Blizzard indicated that the studio had no plans to go free-to-play with World of Warcraft anytime soon. And with the just-launched World of Warcraft Starter Edition, that's still somewhat the case. Interested gamers can now play the base game for free up to a maximum character level of 20. The Starter Edition even includes some of the content found in the first expansion pack, The Burning Crusade, including draenei and blood elf characters.

Tuesday Blizzard said that players who previously signed on for 10- or 14-day trials will be able to jump back into the Starter Edition right where they left off. But once characters reach level 20, they’re required to purchase the $20 digital "World of Warcraft Battle Chest" and sign up for a subscription. Thus, the Starter Edition isn't exactly a F2P game, but rather an unlimited demo. Still, this could serve as a springboard to launch a F2P service in the near future.

In addition to the Starter Edition launch, Blizzard also said that the second content update for Cataclysm, Rage of the Firelands (patch 4.2), is "erupting" across Azeroth. "With a new raid, a legendary DPS staff quest line, the most diverse daily questing experience to date, PvP Season 10, user-interface enhancements such as the Dungeon Journal, and much more, Rage of the Firelands brings a little something for everyone," Blizzard said.

The studio added that anyone who owns the original World of Warcraft, regardless of when they purchased the game, will automatically be able to access all of the content and features from The Burning Crusade expansion at no additional cost.

Discuss
Display all 38 comments.
This thread is closed for comments
Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    clonazepam , June 29, 2011 6:19 AM
    I didn't need more than 1 day of the 14 day free trial to figure out this game isn't for me.
Other Comments
  • 10 Hide
    clonazepam , June 29, 2011 6:19 AM
    I didn't need more than 1 day of the 14 day free trial to figure out this game isn't for me.
  • 0 Hide
    dimar , June 29, 2011 7:01 AM
    I love Warcraft Universe and lore and books and comics, and RTS games... But really dislike WoW games. Tried to play it about 4 times now, and everytime just quit after playing less than an hour. Does Blizzard have a solution for people like me??
  • -2 Hide
    RazberyBandit , June 29, 2011 7:14 AM
    Quote:
    The studio added that anyone who owns the original World of Warcraft, regardless of when they purchased the game, will automatically be able to access all of the content and features from The Burning Crusade expansion at no additional cost.

    If you quit prior to BC (6 years ago), you can play the expansion that came out 5 years ago for free! Oh wait! That's only if you resub, though! LMAO. Pathetic...
  • -3 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , June 29, 2011 9:06 AM
    It won't matter.
    Everything in the game feels so used, and every new thing they implement just seems like something that should've been there all along, and thus is never appreaciated. The game is over. Really. They can keep adding content to keep a few million players happy, but most casual players will be bored by it anyway.
  • -1 Hide
    dco , June 29, 2011 9:24 AM
    This is a nice little benefit for new players but pretty stupid as this does nothing to sway long term players from quitting.
  • 5 Hide
    NuclearShadow , June 29, 2011 9:30 AM
    It's clear that WoW had hit its peak long ago when it came to subscribers and once that happens there really is only one way to go and that down. In no way am I saying WoW is dead but its going to gradually lose players over time eventually coming down to the most hardcore and dedicated players. Servers will merge until there is one per region and soon after that it will shutdown for good. I've seen it happen before and even WoW isn't immune to such.

    This is of course assuming they don't go free to play eventually. Which will expand its life but even then nothing lasts forever. Whether you love or hate WoW you have to admit it will be quite a event to see when the giant gets laid to rest.
  • 0 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , June 29, 2011 9:36 AM
    Yes and roughly 2 months after it's shut down, people will wish they could still play :p 
  • -3 Hide
    beayn , June 29, 2011 11:13 AM
    The Burning Crusade expansion isn't good enough to convince people who quit pre-BC to come back. That xpac was pretty boring compared to the others.
  • 1 Hide
    elbert , June 29, 2011 11:38 AM
    The first timer has to buy the battle chest, Wraith of the lich king, Cataclysm, and one month play time totaling $108 or a game card totaling $122. This is no way to get new customers and will confuse customers on what they much buy. The latest expansion plus monthly cost should be the only things required for play.
  • 0 Hide
    reggieray , June 29, 2011 11:43 AM
    Ah, World of Warcrack, no thanks Activision.
  • 3 Hide
    hajila , June 29, 2011 11:46 AM
    Blizz understands that WoW is done. This move is just one of many designed to stop the hemorrhaging and maintain cash flow until Diablo III and more importantly Titan hit. They have said repeatedly that all of their real talent has been pulled from WoW to work exclusively on Titan. WoW will continue to backslide and be regurgitated content under the hands of interns and new hires at Blizz. That being said I still play not exclusively because of the game but because it allows me to interact in a fun way with my friends stationed all over the world.
  • 0 Hide
    macewrox , June 29, 2011 12:09 PM
    hajilaBlizz understands that WoW is done. This move is just one of many designed to stop the hemorrhaging and maintain cash flow until Diablo III and more importantly Titan hit. They have said repeatedly that all of their real talent has been pulled from WoW to work exclusively on Titan. WoW will continue to backslide and be regurgitated content under the hands of interns and new hires at Blizz. That being said I still play not exclusively because of the game but because it allows me to interact in a fun way with my friends stationed all over the world.


    This. I'm just lookin forward to Titan.
  • 1 Hide
    heerobya , June 29, 2011 12:11 PM
    They already completely re-did nearly every aspect of the 1-60 game for "new players" that is a LOT more casual friendly with faster leveling, better zone design, more interesting and diverse quests, etc.

    If anything the real stagnation is in the "end game" because no matter how many new dungeons and raids they add, it'll always be more of the same.

    The really need to explore new, different styles/types of content beyond dungeons/raids and daily quests.

    I am very surprised after all this time they have not added in any Warhammer like Public Quests or Rift like invasions/dynamic content.

    They have completely and totally shied away from open-world PvP in favor of their battlegrounds and arena's and PvP event zones like Tol Barad, but to bring the veterans back and keep them playing, we need open world dynamic PvE and PvP content!
  • 1 Hide
    demonhorde665 , June 29, 2011 12:17 PM
    NuclearShadowIt's clear that WoW had hit its peak long ago when it came to subscribers and once that happens there really is only one way to go and that down. In no way am I saying WoW is dead but its going to gradually lose players over time eventually coming down to the most hardcore and dedicated players. Servers will merge until there is one per region and soon after that it will shutdown for good. I've seen it happen before and even WoW isn't immune to such.This is of course assuming they don't go free to play eventually. Which will expand its life but even then nothing lasts forever. Whether you love or hate WoW you have to admit it will be quite a event to see when the giant gets laid to rest.



    yep truer words were never spoken, Look at EQ , the game that started the MMO craze, it died and well it's sequel couldnt even last out. Who knows though , there were many inheirantly wrong things with EQ 2 ,but with blizard's record i could see a WoW 2 possibly even surpass WoW 1 in players.

    however , i will yank my hair out if blizzard releases a WoW 2 before making a warcraft 4 RTS. (ie i cant really stand MMO's) and i hate teh fact that so many companies are jumping to moo's with IP's taht used to be RTS or single palyer RPG ( such as SW:ToR). sure muliplayer games are great , but the market is started to get flooded with games that focus too much on MP, especially MMO's .

    i really miss the days where beter single player games were more numerous , oh well , at least i can look forward to Skyrim for single player rpg fun.
  • -1 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , June 29, 2011 12:20 PM
    oh damn you're still here!
  • 1 Hide
    LongLiveRock1974 , June 29, 2011 1:59 PM
    600,000 jumped ship to play Rift.
  • 1 Hide
    juiceman , June 29, 2011 2:09 PM
    Why is so important to be right? Why are so many persons pointing to the death of WOW, a game still being played by so many?

    No matter how good a game or experience is, it will always get stale, after doing it for a while. WOW will not be dead until everyone who can play it has moved on, and there are still a lot of people who haven't tried it. With one caveat, it certainly won't be worth it to maintain the servers if the total number of users fall below a certain threshold.

  • 3 Hide
    yoda22r , June 29, 2011 3:03 PM
    It always amazes me that everytime a WoW article comes out so do the WoW haters. If you don't like it then don't play it, but don't try to convince everyone that wow is "dead" and "done" and is not a good game. It makes you look rather pathetic to post on a game you don't even like. Blizzard could lose half of its subscribers and STILL be 5-6 times more popular than the closest #2. When a valid competitor arrives then a discussion can be had about which is better and why, but there is obviosly no real competition at this time and Blizzards has the Facts to prove it.....all 11.4 MILLION of them
  • 0 Hide
    yoda22r , June 29, 2011 3:05 PM
    Oh and by the way, I just put my flame suit on so BRING IT!
  • 0 Hide
    bryguy894 , June 29, 2011 3:08 PM
    macewroxThis. I'm just lookin forward to Titan.


    Whats the best source of information on the Titan project?
Display more comments