You mean like how Champions is a major license from a tabletop game and they have to pay royalties for that? Yeah, you're right. Royalties stand in the way.
Snarky, sarcastic comments aside, I honestly think this game shouldn't go free to play. There's already enough idiots running around on the game. If it does, it needs to be segregated. Or at the very least have an option for subscribers to be able to selectively turn off the displaying of the chat and name tags of all people who lack a subscription.
Actually, Jack Emmert personally owns Champions now and licenses it back to the tabletop people.