Perfect World and Cryptic have released details of how Star Trek Online’s new free-to-play model is going to work.
The game’s official website has a handy comparative guide to what ‘Silver’ (ie; free) and ‘Gold’ (ie; $15 USD per month) memberships will mean. At a glance, it seems like a large amount of the title will be playable for free (certainly all the sectors, missions, fleet access and PvP aspects).
However, as a ‘Silver’ member you will be missing out on the ability to respec your Captain (unless you spend some cash). Additional bridge officer slots will have to be purchased too.
Anyone who purchased a ‘Lifetime’ membership back when Star Trek Online launched will automatically be classified as a ‘Gold’ member.
Precisely when these changes take place hasn’t been confirmed yet, but it will be later in 2011.