Cryptic Studios' superhero MMO Champions Online will get a free-to-play update, available worldwide, on Tuesday, January 25, Atari Europe has announced.

"It's a genuine pleasure to be able to announce our release date for Champions Online: Free for All," said John Needham, CEO, Cryptic Studios. "On January 25, 2011, any gamer or would-be superhero can play within the ever-improving world of Champions Online for no cost whatsoever."

Champions Online: Free For All also features additional premium content for purchase. Adventure Packs, items, powers and costume pieces can be selected a la carte inside Cryptic's C-Store.

Additionally, current players may continue subscribing as Gold Members, while new players may also optionally upgrade to Gold status, which unlocks most of the game's content and includes extra features for a set price of £10.34 per month.

Turbine has achieved success in turning its MMOs - Dungeons and Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online - into free-to-play games and there's no reason Atari and Cryptic won't enjoy a similar upturn in active players when Champions make the same transition.

Should the move prove good for business then there's also every chance Cryptic's more recent Star Trek Online will follow-suit at some point down the line.