The Paywall Around Lego Virtual World Comes Crumbling Down

The Lego Group, which makes the primary-color building bricks that are a part of most every kid’s childhood, is doubling down on its efforts in digital by making its multiplayer online game free to play.

Beginning in August, players will no longer have to spend $10 a month in order to enter Lego Universe. Now they can play for as long as they like before deciding whether to subscribe. The game is also becoming a digital download, so players will no longer need to buy a DVD.

By lifting these barriers, Lego is hoping that more players will get introduced to the game and therefore more will end up paying over the long run, much like games found on Facebook or other virtual worlds, like World of Warcraft. Lego has been very successful at building videogames on other platforms, like Nintendo, but most have been for a substantial upfront fee.

Lego says that “thousands of players” have played Lego Universe since it launched in October 2010.

Lego says it has no current plans for microtransactions and will stick to its tiered subscription model, which starts at $10 a month. Nonpaying players will have access to two adventure zones and the ability to build Lego models on one property. Full members will have access to all areas in the game and be able to compete and participate in community events.

Photo Credit: Christopher Vigliotti

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