Just five months after its official launch, Hi-Rez Studio's massively multiplayer online shooter Global Agenda
has shed its monthly subscription option, with the developer saying players need only pay for the base game and paid expansions if they wish.
"Hi-Rez Studios is committed to delivering the best value in PC gaming," said executive producer Todd Harris in a statement. Global Agenda Executive Producer. "One purchase of Global Agenda lets you experience all [existing] content forever with no subscription."
The move brings to mind online game developer Turbine's decision to go free-to-play with its two major licensed MMOs, Dungeons & Dragons Online
and The Lord of the Rings Online
, both of which began as traditional subscription-based titles, but is actually much closer to the business model employed by ArenaNet in its own online games Guild Wars
and its upcoming sequel.
While games using the so-called "free-to-play" model generally have no initial fee or subscription, instead funding ongoing development with the sale of virtual goods and services, Hi-Rez plans to fund Global Agenda
with revenue from the sale of the game client itself as well as forthcoming paid content expansion packs.
The company says anyone who buys the game from this point on will gain access to all launch and post-launch material released for the game to date. The "Sandstorm" expansion, the first phase of which has already been released, will be completed later this summer as a free package.
Hi-Rez piggybacked its announcement onto the store-wide summer sale currently behind held by digital distribution platform Steam, which is temporarily offering Global Agenda
for 33 percent off.