Spellborn International, Dutch developer of the fantasy MMO Chronicles of Spellborn, has confirmed that the game will have a free-to-play starting zone, but that you will need to pay a subscription if you want to explore the entire game.
Confusion arose after the zone was mentioned in a press release from the game's American publisher, Acclaim - owned by game industry playboy Dave Perry, and known for its free online games. The US will share a 27th November release with Europe.
"The Chronicles of Spellborn is not a Free2Play game," said the developer.
"There is indeed a Free2Play zone, i.e. the starting area. We... are still looking into the extent of said area. That means that you, players, can test the game for free, and then have to go for a regular subscription to continue playing the game and level up your character.
"Second, there are no item malls, there is no item selling."
It was explained the the developer feels a completely free starting zone will get the game more attention than the more traditional free 14-day trial. This model has already been used with some success by French indie MMO Dofus.
The free zone will apply to both European and North American versions of the game. Subscription charges for Chronicles of Spellborn have not been decided yet.