Developer Funcom has once again insisted that it has no plans to take its recently launched MMO The Secret World to the free-to-play space and that it would continue to focus on creating more content for a player base made up of paying customers.
Erling Ellingsen, who is the communications director working at Funcom, has told Eurogamer that, “It’s a fast changing business and we have to adapt ourselves. But right now there’s currently no plans.”
Joel Bylos, the new game director, added, “It’s really important to us with the business model we’ve chosen. It sounds very emotional, but I almost feel like we need to prove that this business model has not gone the way of the dinosaur by delivering content constantly to people, and making people feel like there’s value in it.”
The Secret World failed to have the success that Funcom hoped to see and it is now facing tough competition from both Guild Wars 2, the ArenaNet created video game that only asks for payment for the initial retail purchase, and the Mists of Pandaria expansion for World of Warcraft from Blizzard.
The main creative force behind Funcom, Ragnar Tornquist, has stated during the development process for The Secret World that he wanted to create a subscription-driven game because that would guarantee the quality of the experience.
He had also previously stated that the MMO might go free to play in one year or might remain subscription-based for the next five, depending on how players react and on the size of the player base.
The Secret World is a pretty unique experience in its genre because it mixes real-world locations and modern history with fantasy elements.
The game also has a number of gameplay elements linked to puzzle solving in addition to the action elements that define the MMO space.