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MMORPG.com Free Zone columnist Richard Aihoshi writes his column this week on the idea of subscription and F2P coming together with a specific look at Istaria's pricing model.
It's easy and thus not unusual for people to talk about free to play and subscription as if they are mutually exclusive alternatives. While I don't know if they actually believe this, it's simply not so.
I've felt for quite some time that the MMO space will see more variations on business models, and this has been happening, although not as a huge, highly visible trend. And as part of the movement, there are examples where the two business models show some degree of convergence or overlap in individual games.
Last week, this site posted an article about the three pricing options for Istaria, which may be more familiar to some under its previous name, Horizons. In addition to a 14-day free trial, publisher Virtrium offers two subscription tiers, at $14.95 and $9.95 per month respectively, and... F2P, which was implemented last year.