Announced two months ago alongside the beginning of Alpha, ArcheAge’s Patron Program was born from the experience of taking our first MMO, RIFT, to a free-to-play model. In simplest terms, the program grants access to exclusive features and expanded benefits in-game. This premium service tier, called Patron status, can be gained through a variety of methods. As a cornerstone of our “No Tricks, No Traps” approach to free-to-play, it’s important to us that the Patron Program adds to the fun of ArcheAge but is not required to play the game. This optional program was jointly designed by XLGames and Trion Worlds and is available to those players who want to get a little extra out of ArcheAge.
Before we discuss how to get it, let’s detail what Patron status means in ArcheAge. Patrons will enjoy the following benefits:
• Bonus online Labor Point regeneration (10 per 5 minutes)
• Offline Labor Point regeneration (5 per 5 minutes)
• Increased maximum Labor Points cap (5000 maximum)
• 10% bonus to all Experience gained through combat or labor usage
• 10% discount on Marketplace purchases
• 5 Loyalty Tokens per day for use in the Loyalty Store (awarded on first login of the day)
• Ability to claim land by placing farms and houses
• Ability to pay in-game taxes on owned property
• Ability to post auctions on the Auction House by default
The Marketplace and Loyalty Store are different in that the former accepts Credits, the premium currency of ArcheAge, while the latter accepts Loyalty Tokens earned from the Patron Program. The Loyalty Store will offer a variety of items including special pets, fun musical instruments, certificates that cover weekly taxes on a large farm, and Patron-only lock boxes that each contain valuable, surprise loot. Patron and free accounts will both start with two character slots and will be able to purchase additional slots up to a maximum of six across all servers, with a maximum of four slots on a single server.
Free accounts will be able to make purchases from the Auction House but will not be able to post their own listings by default, nor do they regenerate Labor Points while offline. Free accounts will be able to unlock full Auction House access as a low-cost Marketplace purchase, a measure in place to protect the in-game economy from mass-created accounts. Players whose Patron status lapses will retain full Auction House access. We are currently exploring options for allowing free accounts to also have the ability to build housing and pay taxes after ArcheAge launches while preventing abuse of this permission.
All Founders will be considered Patrons during all testing phases. The Patron time included in Founder’s Packs will begin counting down on launch day. In addition, the Credits included in each Founder’s Pack can be used to purchase additional Patron time via the Marketplace at any time on or after launch day.
To ensure that all players have the option to potentially become a Patron, there are two ways to obtain this status. Players can purchase Patron Status as a subscription via real money on the Trion Worlds web store; expect pricing in line with RIFT’s current Patron Program. Alternately, players can use credits to purchase a Patron Pass through the ArcheAge Marketplace – these credits can be acquired by web store purchase, Founder’s Packs, or by obtaining an in-game item called APEX.
APEX, short for ArcheAge Patron Exchange, is an in-game item that can be sold on ArcheAge’s Auction House or traded between players; it grants Credits when consumed by a character. The Credits granted by an APEX can then be spent on any Marketplace purchase, including the 30-day Patron Pass mentioned above. This allows industrious players in ArcheAge to let their gameplay pay for their Patron status without spending real money.
We’ll be hosting a livestream to further discuss the Patron Program, the APEX System, and where we’re at with Patch 1.2 and the second Alpha server. We’re eager to test out both the Marketplace and the Patron Store in Alpha and will be granting our testers sufficient currencies to try them out and help us get them ready for live service. Be sure to share your questions about this announcement in this forum thread and then join us on Thursday afternoon on Twitch.
Again, thank you for joining ArcheAge’s founding community and experiencing the game’s path to launch with us!
The ArcheAge Team