City of Heroes News & Events & Guides
Before the free-to-play transition, current, paid subscribers will begin earning loyalty points that can be used for special items and abilities in the new game, Clayton said. Once the transition takes place, those paid subscriptions will become VIP subscriptions automatically, and players won't lose any of the items or characters they've built up in the past.
Those longtime players could well be worried that a horde of free-to-play(CoH Influence) newcomers will ruin the community they've built over the years, though. But Clayton said Paragon has taken pains to make sure that doesn't happen by locking free players out of features such as global chat, in-game mail and forum use. Subscribers will also be able to hang out in VIP-only servers if they want to stay away from the free-to-play riff-raff.
"We really want to keep the experience premier for our VIP players," Clayton said. "Certainly we've seen in some of our hybrid business models that our free players have sort of had the run of the place. ... Once [players] make a commitment to subscribe or purchase some things from the store, there's a much better chance they're a gamer that wants to really enjoy City of Heroes influence and not some gold spammer or griefer."