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Game modding site Nexus Mods drops lifetime membership system

Resident Evil Village

Nexus Mods, one of the biggest repositories of user-created gaming mods on the internet, is abandoning its ‘Lifetime Membership’ model for premium users.

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Although the site is still usable for free, in 2007 it launched a paid membership tier that removed ads and allowed for uncapped download speeds. Users could buy access to the enhanced tier in either monthly, six-month, one year, or lifetime packages. However, its entire payment structure will be overhauled on August 3.

In a blog post yesterday (July 19), Nexus Mods outlined the plans, citing a need to change payment processor as the primary reason.

“Since we first started offering Premium Membership, our billing system … has been handled by our Invision Board forums software and PayPal,” wrote Nexus Mods’ ‘Pickysaurus’. “To be frank, it’s old, archaic, held together by duct tape and glue and was never really intended to be used by a site as big as ours.”

“It’s so delicate, we have not been able to update our Premium Membership pricing since 2013 because doing so breaks many different elements of the billing and Premium membership system which we have no control over as the code is not ours,” they added.

The site is shifting to payment processor Braintree, and will now handle all membership fees internally via its user accounts section, rather than through its forums.

“Our aim is to make the process far simpler for users, provide all the information and functionality they need to manage their membership in the Nexus Mods user area, away from the forums, and to give us more control over the pricing and packages offered,” the site says.

Currently, users can opt for a one month plan at £2.99 per month, six months at £2.49 per month (billed upfront at £14.99), one year at £2.04 per month (£24.49 upfront), or the lifetime plan at a one-off payment of £49.99.

Going forward, membership fees will cost £4.99 per month ($6.90) or £49.99 per year ($69.20). Nexus points out that bills will be charged in GBP, and that the USD price is subject to change in line with exchange rates.

Nexus says that “this change marks the first time we’re increasing our prices in over 8 years,” adding that “inflation alone has reduced the purchasing power of our currency by 17 per cent since 2013.”

However, anyone who purchased a six-month or one year package before the change will continue to get the full value of their purchase until its original expiry date. Similarly, users that buy, or previously bought, a lifetime membership prior to August 3 will have that honoured in perpetuity – making the next couple of weeks the last chance for anyone who’s been mulling a lifetime membership to pick one up.

While Nexus Mods has been a major player on the PC gaming modding scene for years, it saw a flurry of activity in recent months, thanks in large part to several fanciful mods centred on Resident Evil Village.

Elsewhere, classic games including Super Mario 64 and Skyrim have been selling for record prices at auction, with the former fetching $1.56m (£1.124), while the latter hit $600 (£433). Some collectors think those prices are totally fine.

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