Much like Champions Online did last January, Cryptic Studios will be making Star Trek Online free to play before the end of 2011. The announcement was made by the CEO of Cryptic's parent company Perfect World Entertainment, Kelvin Lau. The latter company has several F2P MMO titles under its belt, so the decision to add Star Trek Online to that list does make sense, from a competitive standpoint. Lau adds that making the game F2P will broaden its market potential in the Chinese and US territories. However, it has not been made known if Star Trek Online will use Steam's free to play system in the same vein as Champions Online.
With any luck, this should rope in new players to Star Trek Online, just like the surge of new blood experienced by other MMO games that recently went free to play.