The Average Gamer

DC Universe Online – Retailers failing to mention subscription fees.

With the PS3 version of DC Universe Online ready to drop into stores this week, it will be interesting to see whether the MMO subscription model can actually be a success on a home console. PS3 users take for granted the fact that they can play an online game for free, so the price of the ongoing subscription needed to play DCUO may come as a shock to some.

With such an unusual and high profile release due, I was amazed to find that most of the major online retailers have failed to mention any ongoing costs in their product descriptions. At the time of writing, I found that Amazon, HMV and GAME are all taking pre-orders for the game, but none of them mention the ongoing subscription which is needed to actually play it. The only online store that I could find which had such a notice was Play.com, who state “Please Note: This game is online only. A 30-day subscription is included with purchase of this game. Recurring subscription charges apply automatically thereafter”.

DCUO has an RRP of £39.99, and is retailing online for around £30-£40. It comes with a 30 day pass, but after this, you will need to have an active subscription in order to access the game. Pricing for this subscription, in Europe, is as follows:

  • 1 Month – €12.99/£9.99
  • 3 Month – €34.99
  • 6 Month – €64.99
  • 12 Month – €124.99 (Available on PC only)
  • Lifetime Subscription – €179.99 (Available on PC only)

Somebody should really give these online stores a nudge, and get them to add this information to their product pages. Paying £40 for a game is expensive enough, but to not be told about the ongoing costs really takes the biscuit. As it stands, I can see a lot of disappointed and disgruntled consumers wanting to return the game, once they find out the true price of dressing up in spandex and ridding the streets of crime.

With thanks to Andy@Xcite for the heads up.

3 Comments

  1. Phil DCUO Fan

    14th Jan, 2011 at 7:00 am

    From what I can tell, the retailers must’ve wised up- at least Amazon.com has the info in a bullet point ‘feature’ of the game now.

    I played in the beta- and play other mmorpg games on pc, so the whole $15 monthly subscription fee is nothing new or upsetting– but in nearly ALL the PS3 forums, blogs, etc people are just going nuts over having to pay… Granted, I do not have a PS3 so do not know the ‘normal expectation’ of a PS3 user- but c’mon, does the ps3 have ANY mmorpgs? and if it does- surely they all couldn’t be free?

    I’ve pre-ordered my pc collector’s edition, just waiting for it to show up– kind of going through some dcuo withdrawal here….

    See you in game!

    • Dan Crawley

      14th Jan, 2011 at 12:09 pm

      You are right about Amazon.com including the subscription details in their product description now. Unfortunately the UK site is still lacking this information, as are the other online stores mentioned in the article. Hopefully they will correct this soon, as I can see a lot of unhappy customers complaining when they realise they only get 30 days of playing time for their £40. There really should be full disclosure of this fact when selling the game online.

      The MMO model is very new to consoles, and it will be interesting to see whether it takes off. There is certainly a lot of grumbling on various forums about the ongoing costs, and I think this has been heightened by the fact that the game itself (which is essentially just an access key to the ‘universe’) has been given a full price release.

      I hope that you enjoy the game anyway, Phil.

      • Kill_Joy_Kid

        29th Jan, 2011 at 10:57 am

        This kinda sucks the ps3 online should be free as always. or atleast half the price. :/ is debating wether or not to buy it.