World of Warcraft(WOW), the world’s most popular MMORPG of all time, is now offering free download and introductory content for free play. Blizzard Entertainment, the company behind game, has opted to allow players to play for free the first 20 levels out of 85, but have to buy expansions plus the original game if they want to continue after level 20.
The free to play version, called the Starter Edition, will give new players a chance to take their time and explore and learn, without having to worry that the free trial will expire. When they reach level 20, they can continue playing but will stop earning experience, making it impossible to level up. To play past level 20, new players will need to upgrade to the full, paid version of the game, which can be done online here. Blizzard Entertainment recently dropped the price for an original copy of the game and the first expansion to $20, but the other expansions are still priced at around $35.
Although there’s no time limit for trial players, there’s a great deal of other restrictions besides the 20-level limit: Trial players can have a maximum of 10 gold; their trade skills are capped at 100 ranks; they are unable to trade via the Auction House, mailbox, or player-to-player; their chat options are limited; they cannot invite other players into a party; they are unable to join parties with other characters above level 20, and their accounts are not eligible for character transfers and and so on. Here’s an FAQ describing all the intricacies of the new free trial system.
Not only has Blizzard made the decision to make World of Warcraft free-to-play the first 20 levels, but they’ve also decided to make The Burning Crusade no longer a purchasable expansion. Those who had previously purchased classic World of Warcraft now have access to all Burning Crusade content free of charge and for good. Also because the expansion is included in the game now, players enjoying the Starter Edition can play as Draenei and Blood Elves, races previously exclusive to owners of the Burning Crusade expansion.
For more info and start playing the Game free right now, sign up on the World of Warcraft official website.