VIP vs Premium vs Free
D1. Downgrade Possibilities
Once your account is upgraded to Premium, that is the minimum status it can have. If it is upgraded to Premium, it will never downgrade to Free. If it is upgraded to VIP, you can un-subscribe and have Premium access (but won't ever go back to Free).
D1.1 "Types" of Premium
There is only one type of Premium. However, individual characters can have increased access if the account was previously VIP or subscribed prior to the launch of Free play.
D1.2 Subscriber = VIP
A Previous subscriber will be treated exactly the same as someone who downgrades from VIP. VIP is just another way of describing a subscriber.
D1.3 Account Status @ Launch
Accounts will retain their current subscription/price plan status at launch. The player can chose to make any change via the Account Management website.
-Subscribed accounts will remain subscribed, which translates to VIP access.
-Accounts that were previously upgraded with a key, or that subscription fees were paid on will have Premium Status. You can chose to upgrade to VIP at any point and re-subscribe.
-Free/Trial/Guest/Referral/Beta accounts that were never upgraded will have Free access. You can chose to upgrade at any point to VIP by subscribing. Any points purchase (with real world money) will upgrade the account to Premium.
D2. Gold Cap (VIP to Premium)
If you downgrade from VIP to Premium, the gold cap is permanently removed for any characters that you log into while you are VIP. Any characters that you don't log into, or characters created after you downgrade will have the Premium cap.
D2.1 Gold Restrictions (Free to Premium)
Only Free accounts are restricted about moving gold between characters on the same subscription. Premium and VIP accounts can move gold between characters on the same subscription.
D2.2 The Gold Cap and Escrow
Money will accumulate over the cap for a character, and the money above the cap has no limit. However, the money will not actually be delivered to the character's wallet until the cap is removed. You cannot spend down gold to access the escrow.
You can remove the cap by purchasing the Remove Gold Restriction offer from the store (also see S5). The cap does not apply to VIP subscribers. The only exception is for a Premium account which has been downgraded from VIP: any character which was played while an account was VIP will continue to not have the gold cap.
D3. Storage Space (VIP to Premium)
If you downgrade from VIP to Premium, only characters active while the account is VIP will have 5 bags. Any characters that you don't log into, or characters created after you downgrade will have 3 bags.
D4. Riding (VIP to Premium)
If you have the riding skill for a character then you keep riding, even if you downgrade to Premium. Characters that do not gain the riding skill while VIP, or characters created after you downgrade do not have that skill.
D4.1 Riding and the Store
The riding skill can be purchased in the store. The only restriction is that the character you are purchasing the riding trait for must have acquired the Passive Skill: Novice. This is earned by completing the beginning experience.
D5. Does having purchased Angmar give Premium access?
-Yes, the box or digital purchase of The Lord of the Rings Online: The Shadows of Angmar gives Premium status. This also applies to any complete purchases that included Angmar access (Moria Complete, Mirkwood Complete).
-Existing or past players who only created Free trial accounts will not receive Premium status at launch this fall.
D6. What areas and quests are included with Angmar? (The FAQ notes Ered Luin, Shire, Bree-land are free, and Eriador is available for VIP).
-All quests in The Shire, Ered Luin, Bree-land, and Lone-lands are available to all players.
-All landscape areas in The Lord of the Rings Online are open to free players. While free players can explore and kill monsters in these areas they cannot complete the side quests contained there without first purchasing the Quest Packs for those areas.
-All players will also have full access to all the Epic Story quests, crafting and class quests up to level 65 (the level cap).
D7. What areas and quests are included with Moria?
-When a player purchases a Mines of Moria boxed or key Expansion Pack or Quests they immediately unlock all the quests and areas within Moria for access; including all instances related to the areas).
-They also receive 2 additional character slots, Skirmish Trait Max 15, and the Rune-keeper and Warden classes with purchase of the Expansion Pack.
-Please note that store purchase access may not include all of these options.
D8. What areas and quests are included with Mirkwood?
-When a player purchases the Siege of Mirkwood expansion they immediately unlock all the quests and areas within Mirkwood; including all instances related to the area.
D9. Adventurer's Pack
-If you have purchased the Adventurer's pack, you keep the character slots and shared bank space.
D10. Free (After Free Play Launch)
In order to have a free account, you can use a previous, non-upgraded trial/guest/referral subscription. You can also create a new free subscription.
D11. Premium (After Free Play Launch)
In order to be Premium, you need to have purchased something with real world money at some point. This includes points purchases, box or digital copies of the game or subscription fees (paid prior to or after the launch of Free Play).
D12. VIP (After Free Play Launch)
In order to be VIP you need to be currently subscribed to the game, using a credit card or game cards as payment.
Any current subscribers who continue to keep an active subscription (including Lifetime subscriptions) are VIP.
D13. Trait Slots(VIP to Premium)
For any current subscriber or VIP, if you downgrade to Premium you keep all trait slots on characters played during the time you subscribed. You will not lose any trait slots or have them un-slotted when you downgrade, regardless of the level of the character when you downgrade. This does includes traits that your character hasn't reached the level for yet.
After you downgrade to Premium, any new (or un-played) characters will not have access to additional trait slots.
D14. Auctions (VIP to Premium)
If you downgrade to Premium from VIP you will lose your auction slots. However, any auctions currently in those slots will stay up until they expire or are purchased. After which they will be returned as normal or the game money sent as normal.
D15. Quests(VIP to Premium)
If you downgrade to Premium from VIP, you can complete any quests you are currently on (quests in your journal) even if it is not one that you would normally have access to with the areas unlocked on your account. You can only start other quests in the area or chain if you have access to the applicable area with your Premium status (it is included free, you've purchased the pack that includes the area, etc).
D15.1 Instances (VIP to Premium)
Some Quest Packs include Instances. Information about exactly what is included with each should be listed in the store description.
D16. Deeds (VIP to Premium)
Any Deeds that you are currently in the middle of earning, you can continue. However, you won't be able to start on the next Deed if you have downgraded, and not bought the area that the deed is associated with.
D17. Rep(utation) (VIP to Premium, Premium & Free)
Any rep you have earned, you keep.
The ability to earn more rep is dependent on the available method(s) of earning rep, which may include turn ins and quests (in some cases account status may change quest availability, see D15, and/or area availability). Most reps can be earned in some way without the purchase of areas or upgrades, however many more opportunities are available once an area is unlocked, and the included quests and NPCs accessible. As noted in D15, if you are already mid quest, you can complete that quest, regardless of account status.
D18. Customer Service Availability - Free & Premium
For Free players, and Premium players outside of the 30 day window, In-game support is limited to spam/harassment reports (right click on the name) and stuck support (using the /stuck command).
Account and Tech support is available for all players, regardless of status.
D19. Monthly VIP Points
Monthly VIP points will be granted within 2-3 days after the successful payment (or monthly anniversary for multi-month and Lifetime subscriptions). Also see the Points: VIP, Bonus, Earned In-Game sectionabove.
D20. Rest XP (Free and Premium)
Free and Premium players do not earn Rest XP.
The Enhanced XP Supply, available in the LOTRO Store, offers a similar bonus to Rest XP, and stacks with Rest XP earned by VIPs.
D20.1 Rest XP (VIP to Premium)
If an account is downgraded from VIP to Premium, you stop earning new Rest XP as Premium. You can still use existing Rest XP, but can’t earn any more unless you upgrade to VIP again.
D21. Chat Restrictions (Free)
Free players can send tells to a unique character within a 30 second interval, with some small limits on how often you can send. Basically, once a free player sends a tell to another character, they can’t send tells to any other players for the next 30 seconds.* Please do note that there are other ways (besides tells) to talk to other players.
These restrictions are in place to protect all of our players and the game experience, and prevent spam and third party abuse.
D21.1 Chat Restrictions (Premium)
Premium players do have limits on chat, but they are not as strict as the free restrictions. The time limits are not as restrictive, and you can talk to several players at once. Please do note that there are other ways (besides tells) to talk to other players.
D21.2 Chat Restrictions (VIP)
No restrictions. Chat as you like!
D21.3 Chat Restrictions (VIP to Premium)
Players who downgrade from VIP are subject to the same Premium restrictions (as far as chat) as players who have never been VIP.
D22. Mail & Trade Restrictions (Free)
Free players have mail restrictions similar to Free chat restrictions.* Free players cannot mail away or trade away gold. Free players can receive gold in trade or in the mail (subject to the gold cap). Most items can be mailed or traded, however any item restrictions are based on the item in question (i.e. character bound items cannot be traded or mailed).
D22.1 Mail & Trade Restrictions (Premium)
Premium players do have limits on mail, but they are not as strict as the free restrictions. The time limits are not as restrictive, and you can mail to several players within a short period. Premium players can send and receive gold by mail (subject to the gold cap).
Premium players do not have trade restrictions. They do have the ability to send or receive gold by trade (subject to the gold cap).
Most items can be mailed or traded, however any item restrictions are based on the item in question (i.e. character bound items cannot be traded or mailed).
D22.2 Mail & Trade Restrictions (VIP)
No restrictions. Mail and trade as you like! Please note that most items can be mailed or traded, however any item restrictions are based on the item in question (i.e. character bound items cannot be traded or mailed).
D22.3 Mail & Trade Restrictions (VIP to Premium)
Players who downgrade from VIP are subject to the same Premium restrictions (as far as mail & trade) as players who have never been VIP.
D23. Swift Travel
Swift travel is available to VIPs for free.
Swift travel can be temporarily unlocked (1 hour, 1 day, 7 days, 30 days) with the Writ of Special Passage from the LOTRO Store for Free or Premium players. The swift routes in the beginning areas are free to all players.
Premium players who were previously VIP get to keep unlocked access to swift travel routes they had access to while VIP. Please note that only the characters played while the subscription was VIP will have access to the swift travel routes, and each character will only have access to the swift travel routes which that specific character could access. Characters created after a subscription downgrades from VIP to Premium will only have access to beginning area swift travel routes.
D24. Crafting Guilds, Crafting Restrictions and Store Purchase
Everyone can join a crafting guild once they are at the expert tier of the profession with a guild.
In order to be able to advance to farther than acquaintance standing, you have to buy access to the crafting guild from the webstore.
If you are a VIP you get this ability automatically.
If you become a Premium from VIP, you can advance within the current tier and get as much reputation as you want, but you won’t advance to the next tier unless you buy the item or subscribe again.
Skirmish soldier ranks are gated at 7 for Free Players.
Max Rank 15 is available from the LOTRO Store or with the Moria Expansion Pack.
Max Rank 25 is available from the LOTRO Store once you have acquired Max Rank 15.
D26. Character Slots
Free players have access to 2 character slots.
Premium players have access to 3 character slots.
VIP players have access to 5 character slots.
D26.1 Additional Character Slots
Additional character slots can be purchased.
Moria includes 2 additional character slots.
The Adventurer's Pack includes 2 additional character slots.
Additional character slots can be purchased in the web store, up to a limit of 17.
D26.2 Extra characters/slots when I downgrade?
If you downgrade from VIP to Premium, you will lose access to 2 character slots. If all of the character slots are filled prior to the downgrade, you will be prompted to pick which characters you would like access to when you log in after the downgrade takes effect. CHARACTERS WILL NOT BE DELETED, you just won't be able to access them unless you purchase additional character slots, or upgrade to VIP again.
If you purchase additional character slots, you keep those additional character slots, regardless of any changes to your account. For example, if you are VIP and you have 5 character slots, and you purchase 2 additional character slots (not related to Mirkwood or the AdvPk) for a total of 7 character slots. If you downgrade to Premium you will then have a total of 5 character slots.
D26.3 - Character Limitations per Server
These base character limitations are per server. For example, without any additional purchase, as a Premium player you can have up to 3 characters on each server.
Post bumping is a violation of the CoC.
All questions will be answered when I am able to provide a thoroughly verified official launch answer. Please be patient.
This is a FAQ. If you would like to debate an issue, please do so in another thread.
- Versions -
8/20 - Stuck!
8/23 - Split posts. S6 Store vs Non-Store Items, S2.1 Store Issues and Support, P9 Deed Points, D19 VIP Points
8/24 - D1.3 Acct Status @ Launch, D2.2 The Gold Cap and Escrow, D4.1 Riding and the Store, D23. Swift Travel, D24. Crafting Guilds, Crafting Restrictions and Store Purchase, D25. Skirmish, D26. Character Slots, D26.1 Additional Character Slots, D26.2 Extra characters/slots when I downgrade?
8/25 - Thread locked.
8/26 - Change points to start with PT. S7 Acct Store Items, S7.1 Shared Bank Space, PT10. Point transfers, D26.3 Char slots per server
11/4 - Update S.6 Store Items that are bound to account cannot be mailed, only put in the Shared Bank space.
1/28/2011 - Updates to reflect changes since launch. D6, D7, D8, D20, D23, D25
2/11/2011 - Updates to reflect changes since launch. D23