Lineage is one of the oldest and most successful MMORPGs – at least in Asia. Since 1998 a subscription is required to play it. But soon that will change.
What is lineage? The MMORPG Lineage launched in 1998 was developed by Jake Song, who works at ArcheAge today. The tremendous success of the classic online role-playing game helped NCSoft to start its triumphant advance in the market. Lineage was the first MMORPG to attract more than one million subscribers.
Even today, the game is so popular in South Korea that it brings NCSoft many revenues every quarter.
- It’s a pretty classic MMORPG, where you move out with friends, chasing monsters and improving your character over time.
- The conquest of castles plays a big role as it allows control of the fortress to set prices for items in the region.
- The game is played from a 2D iso-view similar to Diablo 3.
Free2Play conversion is coming
What changes now? As NCSoft announced, Lineage is transitioning its business model from subscription to Free2Play.
When will be changed? From May 2nd, the MMORPG will be available in Korea as a Free2Play game.
Why is it being changed? In March, a remastered version of Lineage appeared in South Korea. This brought higher-resolution textures and other modernizations with it. In order to make the game even more modern and to align it with today’s gambling habits, the payment model must now also be adapted.
Free2Play is much more widely used as a business model in Asia than the subscription model. The new version of Lineage should adapt accordingly.
It should never happen
What special features does this conversion offer? About half a year ago NCSoft stated that Lineage should not be switched to a Free2Play model. But now it happens.
Allegedly, the sale of in-game items NCSoft should bring at least as much money as the subscription. For example, Einhasad’s Favor has announced an EXP booster, which analysts say NCSoft will not miss the subscription revenue.
How do the players react? In this country Lineage actually plays hardly a role. It is not officially playable in the US and Europe. However, there are some fans of the MMORPG who are also happy about the remaster, but the switch to Free2Play is hardly an issue in the West.
Lineage 2 is a bigger topic, as there are also official, “western” servers for this MMORPG.