Usually when a game goes from subscription based to free-to-play means only one thing and that is their going under. However, it seem like after Turbine took this drastic step where they let their gamers play for free and opt for micro-transaction their revenue has doubled ever since.
Lord of the Rings Online Executive Producer Kate Paiz announced this good news during GDC Online 2010. Paiz said the game was in fact not in trouble in any way just that it would turn out better after doing some math. Paiz also said that 20% of former players that left the game returned after the switch and the in-game currency went up 300% increase, while three times the players playing online simultaneously. Surprisingly, already 53% players have been using the online store to purchase the popular extra slots in their inventory and mounts.
The important lesson here is that people love free stuff and every MMORPG should take note (come on blizzard time to switch?).