Seeking Alpha has posted the Q2 2011 Earnings Call with Perfect World, who recently acquired Star Trek Online (STO) and Champions Online developer Cryptic Studios from Atari. During the call, Perfect World CFO Kelvin Lau stated that Cryptic is currently working on a free-to-play model for STO and it will launch sometime before the end of the year.
As you might expect, there have been a lot of questions erupting across the STO forums about the reveal. Executive Producer Dan Stahl took to the forums to confirm the announcement and reassure subscribers that nothing will change for them and that they will enjoy the same benefits and perhaps a few more. Additional details will be coming soon. This one may have caught even Cryptic by surprise. However, there is at least one writer (me) on the staff that is not surprised by the news and this adds another win to my 2011 MMOG predictions. Stay tuned and we'll update you with more details as they become available.