I began playing Lord of the Rings Online in 2009, right about the time the Mines of Moria expansion was released. As with City of Heroes, the main reason I started playing was because some of my friends played, but at the time I didn’t want to devote any money to an additional game. I played through my prepaid time period then went back to CoH.
A year or so later, LOTRO change to a free to play system. Free playerd didn’t have access to everything, but they had access to a lot! And considering my existing account counted as “premium” because I had already spent money to play, I had access to even more. Sure, upgrading to a subscribed “VIP” status would give me access to the entire game and all levels of play, I didn’t play often enough to do so, but I did start playing more since I didn’t have to devote any more money to it.
It wasn’t long after than when CoH changed to a similar F2P system as well, and this gave me a choice. I ended up switching back and forth every few months, paying for VIP status one game, then the other. Generally, whichever I played more I paid for and kept the other one at premium status. Eventually I ended up playing LOTRO more.
Currently, with CoH now gone, the only MMO I play is LOTRO. I have over 20 characters spread across three servers, and with all the available content I rarely get bored.