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General: Why You Should Embrace the F2P Movement

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,632MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

Today's The List column is a provocative look at the free to play movement in games these days. MMORPG.com writer Bill Murphy has four reasons why you need to embrace the F2P movement. See if you agree or disagree.

Let me first state that this isn’t a distinct attempt to ruffle feathers. It’s merely a list of several reasons that the current trend of taking underperforming games and turning them into F2P titles is not succinctly “a bad thing”. Sure, right now it seems like little more than a marketing trend or a grasping-at-straws tactic for games with falling subscription numbers. But I’m of the mind that it’s one part of the greater evolution of the genre in the West. The space is getting crowded, and in order for variety to survive certain steps need to be taken to differentiate one product from another. The cost is only one piece of the puzzle, but it may be the most important one for some games. Let’s take a look at just why you shouldn’t be afraid of the current F2P Movement.

Read The List and then let us know what you think.


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Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

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Comments

  • SnarlingWolfSnarlingWolf Thereiam, ARPosts: 2,697Member

    Two of your items in the list are the same and they basically say that it will be cheaper. Most people that currently have no issue paying a sub will likely pay MORE a month with f2p because they can. There will be more people who try the game, never spend a cent but also don't stick around. There will be more people who play it every now and then when they're bored, don't make much progress but don't spend any more. There will be far more people spending over $15 a month. So I find those two points to be dead wrong. Games like DDO have shown they make more money with F2P, which in turn shows that the average money brought in when factored by number of players is higher. This in turn means that more people pay a lot less and more people pay a lot more but the average in the middle pays more then it used to. So not cheaper.

     

    This isn't change in a good way in my opinion. It means they now will nickle and dime you for all kinds of things that previously you would of gotten as part of your subscription. I don't like DLC on consoles either because it encourages games to release less content when they initially sell the game and then make people pay for the "extra" content which brings it up to a full sized game. Also as far as your point goes, it's already turning into everyone copy the guys who went F2P, so if your argument is based on everyone copying the same thing so change is good, in a year everyone will be a copy of the same thing again so there was no win.

     

    The #1 point you made goes along with the first two points you mentioned. It stays around longer not because it is cheaper for players (that by itself is a contradiction). It stays around longer because the average money brought in per player is HIGHER. So by making it more expensive for gamers, the game can indeed stay around longer since it is bringing in more money. But it isn't staying around longer for good reasons.

     

     

    Overall I found those to be poorly thought out reasons.

  • furidiamfuridiam lincoln, ILPosts: 137Member Common

    Snarlingwolf pretty much hit it on those nose. 

  • HashbrickHashbrick Green Bay, WIPosts: 1,215Member Uncommon

    Embrace the F2P movement?

    Excuse me while I get a generic hotdog instead of a ballpark.


    Originally posted by imbant

    Did we say we were trying to do good for the game? the game is in the hands of aventurine, no one else...

  • NovaKayneNovaKayne Houston, TXPosts: 743Member

    Well, in this case of AAA tittles that are reaching their EOL.  I cannot say F2P is a bad thing.

     

    If the following moddel is used I agree with it.

     

    If the game has a subscription account that has full access to the game, updates and content. 

    If the subscription account also includes unlimited game play.

    If the F2P account can play the core game ( at least up to the first expansion of the game ) without any purchase.

    The F2P Account can then purchase any of the areas in either piecemeal transactions or some package deal.

    The F2P account can be upgraded to subscription without losing anything that has been purchased.

     

    To a casual gamer this sounds way more appealing ( and something I noted you did not include in your article ).  A casual player will maybe put in 5-10 hours a week.  It would take this type of player an extended period of time to make it to any of the upper level content.  Stuff the Subscription guys are already doing because they have been playing the game since its inception.

     

    It would allow those who can casually play these games, play them.  Dropping some money off on the game when they can afford it and when they can use it.  Having to get into EQII  ( which has what? 2 expansions out now? ) is expensive for someone who has a budget and limited play time.  If it takes 6 months to make it to the level you need to get to the first expansions content, that is too long to pay for something you have not been able to use.

     

    Now, 6 months into the game, if I decide i want to go that next step.  Then I can purchqase what is needed to do so.  At probably about 70-80% of the cost of the new content.  Beats offereing all of the expansions at 10% of their original costs.

     

    I was never a big fan of this until I started playing APB.  I do not play it as much as others.  I have had the game over a month and still have about half the original time that came with the game.  I can pick it up and play it at any time while not having to pay a monthly fee for something i am not using.  Now that I have less time to play, why SHOULD I have to pay as much as those who can put 50-60 hours a week into the game? 

     

    We all know that MMO's reward those who play longer.  Not necessarily play better.  Just because you have the time to play 50 hours a week to get an item does not mean my Paying for the item ( an equivalent of 100 hours of game time ) is a worse situation.  Is it?  You saying your time is more important than mine?

     

    I do believe that items should not be put into a CASH SHOP until the subscription items or main populace has had access to the item over some period of time.  Make it fair, make it worth the time.

     

    Say hello, To the things you've left behind. They are more a part of your life now that you can't touch them.

  • LudipeLudipe AlbacetePosts: 109Member

    I love F2P games, right now i play DDO, if i have much time to play i just pay for the vip mode, if i have to study or i won´t have much time i dont loose my character and can keep playing.

    With EQII, LOTRO, DDO and DC Universe high quality will reach F2P gamers.

  • OzmodanOzmodan Hilliard, OHPosts: 7,191Member Uncommon

    The article was a good laugh, if that was what you were intending.  The first one got a real chortle from me.  Hope you said that "less stress on your wallet" tongue in cheek.  You do realize of course that it is very easy to spend a lot more than your standard subscription rate per month in these games.

    Their is no such thing as free to play, that is a complete misnomer.  More like free to test and pay through the nose to play.

    If you like pvp, you had better have a fat wallet, because ALL of these games require significant spending in the item shop to be viable in pvp.

    Not saying f2p is bad.  For those with not a lot of time to play and the cash to spend on the game they are a good choice.

    Any game that has pvp with an item shop that effects such is still a complete joke in my mind.

  • azmundaiazmundai St Louis, MOPosts: 1,417Member

    f2p also encourages any yahoo with the patience to download unity to spit out a game. This dilutes player bases on other games making the idea of community .. and idea that used to be at the heart of the word MMO .. a fantasy. There are other reasons this is occuring, but most of those reasons also have to do with f2p games. Devs grasp at subscriptions. In order to hold them they have to give the players everything they want. There used to be consequences to ninja lookting and just being a jerk. Now you just rename your toon .. transfer .. or play another game. These things were all nerfed to ensure that the aaa titles kept their subs away from the plethorah of crappy titles being spewed forth by anyone who even tries.

    LFD tools are great for cramming people into content, but quality > quantity.
    I am, usually on the sandbox .. more "hardcore" side of things, but I also do just want to have fun. So lighten up already :)

  • MehveMehve Kitchener, ONPosts: 487Member

    The only meaningful point in that whole thing I could see was the notion of "No Cover Charge", which is something I highly embrace for a genre that's supposed to make money from long-term subscribers, not a glut of initial box sales.

    But aside from that, the main points come across as excuses, and ones that can already be found ad nauseum throughout these forums. To paraphrase your four points, 4) "You don't have to pay anything to play", 3) "They're getting pretty good lately", 2) "Change will be good for this stagnated industry", 1) "It keeps failing games alive". To expand:

    4) To which I offer the same tired old rebuttal - somebody has to pay, and with lots of people not paying (statistically), you need to go out of your way to convince the remainder to pay more. And cosmetics and bags of holding alone just don't bring the money in. Eventually, you have to sell time, whether that comes in the form of power or gold, which begs the age-old (and payment model agnostic) question of why a player is paying to avoid the game.

    3) Mediocrity is still mediocrity, whether the improvement slope is positive or negative. Yes, gamers are starting to demand some quality, but all they're doing is beginning to hold F2P's to similar standards as other games. In due time, this may become a reason to "tolerate" the F2P movement, but not "embrace" it.

    2) Sure, the MMO industry needs change. But ultimately, F2P refers to the payment model, not the gameplay itself. Try saying "This industry needs the same stuff as always, except on a different payment plan", and see how much less convincing it sounds. F2P doesn't magically change or revolutionize the game itself - if anything, it may just strengthen the temptation to design for profit instead of playing.

    1) If the game is failing, it's probably failing for a reason. I'm not aware of any game that was truly in the shitter, that was magically resurrected through a transition to F2P. The example of DDO isn't an accurate representation of F2P, in that it involves selling the Adventure Packs (i.e. content), with tends to make the initial game into a well-featured demo, which isn't the same thing as F2P. There's a reason Turbine is calling it "Hybrid", and why the "No Cover Charge" term is beginning to get used - it's not the same thing as the F2P that this article is suggesting we embrace. But if you'd like to bring out some examples from the other 99.9% of F2P's out there...

    A Modest Proposal for MMORPGs:
    That the means of progression would not be mutually exclusive from the means of enjoyment.

  • JetrpgJetrpg Whitehouse, OHPosts: 2,376Member

    4. less stress on the wallet

    This has been mentioned over and over, F2P is rarely cheeper than P2P often way way more expensive (alantica anyone).

    If you play more than a week or so in these games it quickly become clear how much the acctual cost of them is. And the ones that are not that expensive are often just P2P subs with free play that becomes all but impolssible at xx level.

    3. Real quality for cheap.

    Once agian i challenge the premise that it is cheap. However, i agree about the quality. Lets look at the games you exampled.

    DDO - not a F2P made game nor were lotro or EQ2 (So please stick to acctual F2p games when you are addressing quality, ie games that were dev. and released f2p otherwise you can't make the claim f2p games provided quality, in my honest and logical opinion).

    Runes of magic is one of the few F2P that i have not played much of, so ill not say much about it

    Look at wizards 101 good game fun, quality, its a good game. Its F2P until you hit level 10 (and even if you can get pst this first bumb youll not make it past 20 without subbing) when it then becomes a P2P game. Much like WAr currently is. AS anyoen can play the first tier but to get past that you must sub.  WAR should announce that its going F2P and make it so past the first tier you only get teir one experience for killing mobs (soon enough they will be worth no exp) and you are stuck with tier 1 stats and items. Soon enough you'll realize you have to pay to play, that is the state of almost all F2P games currently. Becuase people want money and thats fine, but a few people do F2P right. LoL is a game witha  REAL FREE TO PLAY system, where you can play and compete 100% along side other players paying money or not. But there are aesthetics that you have to pay for if you want (but 100% do not impact game play) and you can buy things that do impact game play but any free player can get the same (it may take them longer) but that hardly matters becuase they are like the differnce between specs. The free player still has a specs, but by usign money you may have more specs (that are not innately superior). So change maybe good or bad, F2P as it is used by mmos today is largely bad for the reasons i have listed and will list below, But it could be good like LoLs.

    2. Change.

    Which is not good or bad. To ever lable change as a pro is quite humorus. Change is just that, a difference, it cannot imply a positive or negitive quality (however it could be one or the other, or even both at the same time). As i have been saying most F2P is not much of a change open trials allowed with required subs. Others (cashshops) require quite more money to experience even less of a game than P2P (Always tout alantica as my example here). Why becuase its good buissness, if a person liek a game enough to keep playing it, they often like it enough to invest a small amoutn of money and if they still like it well, now at level 80 i need more stuff just to keep going, so ill spend a bit more until your spending a lot just to play the game (not even get great equipment, all of which you can get in p2p games like wow and daoc for just $15. In alantica it costs $100s and $100.)

    I do have to say that turbine and its ddo system allows game play w/o paying a ton, but before for $15 i could max a toon and visit an easy $70 worth of instances. Even if i didn't have much time to play and it took me 3 months or $45 i would have far fewer limitations (as i now have to buy character spaces etc, i played b4 so i wouldn't, but for somethings i would) New feats pack etc. U don't have to buy them, will i be weaker sure, but hey its free and forget about skill or even effort, achivement now comes with the almighty power of the dollar. Overall, however i understand that this system does acctually allow gameplay without spending much and for that i support turbine, how long this will last... And if you want to play alot of this game for like a year or more its not a bad deal. As you still will own those adventure packs. But if the game is low on playability, which ddo is i question if you'll get your money out of them.  As for cash shop games liek atlantic, etc. You get less play time out of cash shop items, buffs, etc than youd just nornmally have in a P2P games.

    1. The games can suivive longer.

    Why; did you ask yourself why?

    More sever usage and requirements in F2P.

    Why do these P2P shutdown?

    Well if i was still making money .. why not keep the doors open.

    But if p2p doesn't provide enough money, how does F2P.

    And there you have it, F2p provides more money. Wow would love to be F2P , people would just buy eleet equip. Many would drop $100s, but atm with so many players $15 is not that bad. See not every one can afford F2P and many would leave, because, whats the point of works hard to earn somethign if you can just be rich and buy it ourside of game. Thats not a game, there is no "game" to that. In small low sub/dieing games if you switch to F2P what you will get is more people trying it (becuase its called f2p) hopefully time investment and then money investment that follows that times investment. Basicaly, its a P2P with higbh costs and a good trial that attracts people. This is fine. That is a buissness / payment model , but its not FREE and it does detract from the game. Hurry you have to help these people over here (quest) but only if you pay $7 first.. .

    These are my feeling, experiences, and what i believe is the truth. If you disagree please do so and tell me why. What exactly do you disagree with and what are your experiences.

    Edit- I must say from the comments so far itsrather obvious that most of the mmorpg community actually agrees that getting ripped off but F2P games is bad. And has Seen F2P for what it is a money theiving scheme designed around people's addictions  to mmos, poor money skills, and desire for achivement.

    "Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one ..." - Thomas Paine

  • TardcoreTardcore MinskPosts: 2,325Member

    I think SnarlingWolf already gave some excellent rebuttles to reasons 3 and 4.

    My thoughts on 2. Change. There are already too many half assed MMOs watering down the market. More games going to the FTP plus cash shop method will just increase this downward slide. I agree that the $15 a month scheme is antiquated and needs to be replaced with something new, but I most empatically disagree that the FTP with cash shop scheme is the change we need.

    1. The games can survive longer. On this I'm calling bullsh*t for two reasons. First badly desgined games just like any half baked product, deserve to fail. A company using the FTP method to bilk even more cash out of the customer before the game finally tanks is moraly reprehinsible. Second reason, Shadowbane went free to play with no cash shop. Its dead Jim.  Exteel is Free To Play, it is soon to be put out of our misery. FTP with or without a cash shop is zero guarentee that a bad game will draw a marketable player base. And I seriously fail to see how a crap game could do anyone any good by languishing on long after it should have died.

    image

    "Gypsies, tramps, and thieves, we were called by the Admin of the site . . . "

  • bronzeroninbronzeronin Gilbert, AZPosts: 89Member

    Well my theory is that games should have a free trial from the start so you can see if you like the games: style, mechanics, etc., etc., then if you do you subscribe.  Too me the F2P model is either for casuals or for people on a budget and who will stick with there budget and not spend more then they would for a subscription.  The model that DDO uses seems to be okay from what I know about it (my brother-in-law plays but subs so....) but why really have what they call a free to play game but if you want to experience the full game you have to sub or spend money.  It just doesn't make sense to me, its like going to a movie and you can see the first 45 minutes for free but if you want to see the rest you have to get a ticket, I mean maybe that could work to but just seems weird.  

     

    I just know I will probably never (cause I have learned to never say never, lol) play a free to play game again tried a couple and they were just not for me.

    Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.

    Groucho Marx

  • AzrileAzrile Houston, MDPosts: 2,582Member

    Does anyone have numbers on how much it costs these companies for bandwidth?   I remember about 7 years ago a UO person said that it cost almost $6/month just for bandwidth and customer service.

    One thing I think people are confusing is  'players' vs 'sales' vs 'profits'.   A game can have a lot of players, and even garner a lot of sales, but meanwhile they aren't profitable.   Also, as there is more and more dilution from the amount of free games available, it will drastically cut into each games possible revenue.

    DDO was successful, but that is because they were the only modern MMO to go f2p.  Now there is Lotro and Eq2.   DDo also had a better template for doing it with adventure packs etc.  Games like EQ2 and LOTRO both have very 'strange' interpretations of what is purchasable and what is free.

    Me?  i'm happy paying Blizzard $15 for a full dev team, and for a game I know will be around next year.

    LOTRO and EQ2 will just see a lot of 'locusts'.

  • Daffid011Daffid011 Posts: 7,827Member Uncommon

    While I don't have a problem with free to play games, I did not agree with much of this article.

    As others have said, these games tend to cost more over the same amount of time as a typical subscription game.  On top of that they actually give less in return, because everything is fractured into little segments that can't be accessed without additional fees.  This isn't something I hope most current subscription games do, becase there isn't much benefit in it.

    What I do like is that they offer a no risk look at the greater portion of the game and a more flexible payment method for those who tend to play less.  In time I think the hybrid model will right itself into something that attracts more users overall, but right now there is far more hype about the f2p change than there is evidence.   So far there has only been 1 game to actually make this change and all we have seen is a short term increase from it.  Lets check back in a year or two on these games and see how this really works for the company and the players.   Then maybe it will be something we should encourage more of.   It still might prove unsustainable for all we know. 

     

    Also you say subscription model is becoming outdated?  Last I looked subscription games dominate the market and even several of the biggest F2P games have gone the way of subscription model.  F2P has made some improvements, but there is still a long way to go.

    All said and done, we are still talking about games that are in decline and could not compete in the open marketplace.  That is why they are switching revenue models.  Is the subscription model really dieing or is this just dieing games are fleeing the subscription model? 

     

     

  • GreenfeenGreenfeen Abbotsford, BCPosts: 47Member

    4)F2p games are not free neither are they cheap to play. F2p games are generally free to trial then costs skyrocket as the game company maximize their profits on what the market will bear.

    Example 2009 f2p runner up Wizards101. 60 dollars to unlock the game on  a 1 year lease. Drop a named boss get a piece of furniture or go to the named boss chest right behind the dropped mob and pay for your gear drop. The bosses will drop gear its just not in the company's interest to do it when they have a cash shop they want you to use. So plan on running that boss 20-30-40-100 times for your drop. So many great games out there for 60 bucks and wizard101 is not one of them. I'd suggest for half the cost and the ability to play with the same number of friends if not more go play Sins of a Solar Empire.

    3)F2P quality? It's laugable. Drag up failed and/or worn out AA titles as the flag bearer for quality f2p. Didn't see a single game that launched pure as a free to play on your list . Why didn't you use the largest f2p game on the market as an quality example- Farmville. Probably because the game doesn't scream quality it screams time sink.

    2)Change. How about instead of changing payment plans to improve your stale game you stop poaching devs from each other. Fire the lot and get new blood with fresh ideas. Get all your game devs over 28 years old line them up on a buffalo jump and shove them.

    1)Your example here for games that launched and failed overlooks the obvious. Warhammer/Aion/DDO/Vanguard/AoC/lotro didnt fail because of their payment plans. They failed because after millions upon tens of millions of dollars spent developing them they launched them with crashing/buggy/grindy/broken mechanics and stale formats. They spent all that money and missed their market audience by launching with less than what was advertised or playablity/fun that can be easily found in other more complete AA titles.

    In a back handed way though you are right here. Spend 100 million dollars on a supposed AA game it  fails, so sell it as the flagbearer of a quality f2p in a last ditch effort to stay relevent There must be investors lined up around the block for that. All the true f2p games have one thing in common when it comes to spending less. And thats development. Using failed AA titles as the future for quality f2p or what is to be expected in the future as f2p is as disingenuous as it gets.

  • NortonGBNortonGB readingPosts: 279Member Uncommon

    I think it is sad when those that pay can pay the most in microtransations have the most advantages over those that may be more skillful.

    Nevertheless its a good way to play a game for free if the cash shop items are not alltogether essential.

  • hidden1hidden1 San Francisco, CAPosts: 1,244Member Uncommon

    The ideal is novel, however, when you add to the equation human greed, then as the British like to say, "It all goes tits up!"  Frankly, the same can be said about Democracy, Socialism, Communism.  On paper there are some noble ideals behind all those... and again add human greed to the equation and we got the same situation.

    Basically f2p isn't a bad idea, it's just the human equation that seems to ruin the possiblities.

     

    EDIT:  I think f2p could be feasible if the MMORPG in question could have 2 servers, one f2p w/ item shop and one p2p.  That way if I like the game, I'd switch over to p2p model.

  • delateurdelateur Spokane, WAPosts: 156Member

    In my opinion, I like a game that has high production values, sells a "box" for initial release, sells expansions that add sizeable and fun content, and gives regular updates funded with my monthly subscription fees.  On top of that, I expect my loyalty (months paid) to be rewarded with other perks, much like City of Heroes has done.  I would also like the option to pay (at a reduced rate) for the loyalty I might not have been able to afford due to time or money constraints at one point or another.  This is the model that works for me, and while it might not indicate change, or less money spent over time, it's what I feel provides the VALUE I expect for what I pay. I don't expect much from F2P, so I'm normally not disappointed.  However, I don't GET much if I just play for free, so pretty soon I'm weighing just how much certain store perks are worth to me to get more out of the game, and that's too much of a headache.  I'd rather keep it to in-game currency alone, and if I need more of it, I'd like the option to buy THAT from the company at reasonable rates (rates that reflect the economy and the going price for what I might want to spend my money on). I doubt I'll ever be much of a F2P fan. Eventually, if there isn't a subscription model I can move to when I really get into the game, I'll feel cheated by the stores that are charging me each time I want to increase my enjoyment instead of making such things intrinsic to playing the game and plunking down my $15 bucks a month to adventure and find my own rewards.

  • JetrpgJetrpg Whitehouse, OHPosts: 2,376Member

    Originally posted by Tardcore

    ...

    My thoughts on 2. Change. There are already too many half assed MMOs watering down the market. More games going to the FTP plus cash shop method will just increase this downward slide. I agree that the $15 a month scheme is antiquated and needs to be replaced with something new, but I most empatically disagree that the FTP with cash shop scheme is the change we need.

    ...

    Yeah i posted this idea in a few of the other love affair F2P posts.

    Basically, A good new model with to be to pay for the hours you play , the only VALID AND LOGICAL arguement aginst the monthly fee (which is not antiquated, alot of people wanting to make MORE MONEY call it antiquated to . . . . MAKE MORE MONEY, does not make a payment plan used on most monthly services in most industrialized countries [barring social distribution of costs, collectivism] a "antiquated" method).

    As gamers even calling this system antiquated is so sad, infact it makes me rage a little inside. Mainly becuase your young or forgetful, you don't remember the internet before cable and dls... and thena  bit before that. See there were no monthly fees. That old antiquated method of payment did not exists for internet access, instead you had by the hour payment ... And it was expensive. Does that mean that system of payment wan antiquated .. NO. All this means is that neither of these two systems are, they have to no longer be relivent or useful for become antiquated, which, they are not.

    So the real questions becomes, is $15 too much. As many of us had said, if you spend 5 hours in a month in that mmo its cheaper than a movie. The price seems VERY FREAKING GOOD TO ME IF YOU ASK (or if you don't i just told you anyway). If you spend only 10 hours a week playing its $0.00625 a minute that equalis $0.375 a hour (@20 a week, $0.003125 an minute and $0.1875 a hour). Which is far far cheaper than eatign out, watching movies, well heck anything but watchign tv (which is also a good price btw, buy a big tv if you watch a lot the cheapest form of entertianment in america).

    The other issue is some people get more for the same price. True, but lots of things are this way. Your CPU is 100% this way so is your memory and video card. Some cpus last longer, others run better , OC better, are cooler, etc. (all within the same make, model, and price). Some people order the same meal at a seafood place (or where ever, steakhouse) and one persons meal/meat/whatever is better than the others, but the price was the same.  I build computers for friends, family, etc. I order thermal paste and often i don't use all of it, often it comes with the hsf and after 4 of thos hsf i have way to much thermal paste, so am i being over charged for it? Id say no, but lets look some different payment models.

    We could get xxx amount of hours for $15 , if this happens it will cost more for the average user (becuase a reason to change your model must have an incentive and these peoples jobs are to make money). Using this system no oen over pays, its good for the servers becuase people don't afk in game. But there is a darkside as well, the more people play and the longer it takes to accomplish various things in game the more money you make. This is a great reason to make leveling, crafting, questing, raids, etc etc. take longer. And don't say that can't happen that is the model most F2P use, buy this 200% exp potion just so you can level once a day.  Now maybe the game dev.s wouldn't do this and here is the light side if you just play a few hours every week or so you could save a lot.

    But if you really wanted change why not just use a hybrid, $15 unlimited play and a more expensive per hour, but cheaper for people who play less. good spots in my mind are $15 for 56-60 hours of play. I saw one person say 80. The funny thing about this why do it? That  (80 hours) btw is 20 hours a week of play or 4 hours, 5 days a week, which is not casual play and then why would you want to pay hourly over a flat rate. Now this price may seem very high. The cost is much higher if you play 80 hours a week. But remember this deal is for those who don't play much (a two to three nights of 2-4 hours), but still want to play the game. Over all 16-48 hours of play time a week at 2-3nights at 2-4hours each So for $15 these people could play that game 3.625 months - 1.16 months (at 56 per $15) or 3.75m - 1.25m (at 60 per $15). So its a good deal for that payer and its a good deal for the company (they are getting more money for the same server load).

    I would have posted this in my last post other than, its big and that post was already big. Let me know what ya think and why. Change can be good or bad make sure you know what change your getting before its too late to stop it.

    "Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one ..." - Thomas Paine

  • RobokappRobokapp Dublin, OHPosts: 5,206Member Uncommon

    payment by hour will promote casualism. The more casual a game is, the more empty the gameworld is, the more likely for the game to not retain players/payers. games with empty worlds are dead.

    I'm looking at EVE's PLEX and realize...it keeps the world populated.

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  • fearless47fearless47 Williamston, SCPosts: 34Member

    I am hoping that this FTP scheme will run it's course over the next couple of years and then go bust.  It will take that long in my estimation before people realize that with subscription base monthly pay gone the prices will continue to rise.

    Companies know how to bait you into buying stuff in the heat of the moment and constantly add items that are needed over time. They are marketing experts. Just like the research that goes into commercials on TV, they will do research after research to figure out how to get you to buy items in the game.

    It is sad already for those that have supported these MMO's over the last five years to get an email stating that their contribution to keeping that MMO alive by being a loyal subscriber is not worth anything.

    Look at the new EQ2 model for example, now even the subscribers will have to pay to unlock classes. So now you have to pay a monthly subscription and buy items in the store to have the same benefits you had before. LOTRO will give you coins in a monthly amount if you are a subscriber, that tells me that they want to condition subscribers to become comfortable with the store so that later on the can release items that you will have to purchase.

    This is what happens when large companies go about buying up all the smaller ones and have to support large overhead costs. It all comes down to the mighty dollar. It is just another step for companies to try and soak you for more money for the same item.

    As for quality, I am not sure how many FTP games you played, but in my experience if you ran into a bug and submitted it, in most cases they would say "Ohh sorry, here is 400 super coins, hope you feel better" and the bug would remain. It sure doesn't cost them anything to give me fake coins. Matter of fact, it is cheaper then fixing the bug. So no quality there.

    Anyway, it is only a matter of time before gamers credit cards get maxed out or they wise up on how FTP is not good model for the gamer.

  • hogscraperhogscraper Cov, KYPosts: 322Member

    It sounds like too many of the above posters are missing the point. If you have compulsion issues that push you to play a game 60 hours a week, you'll have those same issues pushing you to spend ridiculous amounts of money to play a F2P game. After leveling to cap in two F2P games and halfway there in Battle of the Immortals atm I have spent a grand total of ten bucks. And that was last week to buy more backpack slots. You really do not have to spend money if you don't want to. If you end up dropping fifty a month to play a game, that's your fault and has nothing to do with anything but your own problems with control and patience in most of these games.

  • LawlmonsterLawlmonster Dallas, TXPosts: 954Member Uncommon

    I thought I'd jump in and mention that, starting a couple days ago, I downloaded and began playing Allods Online. While the game itself isn't bad, though a rather uninspired clone of so many games that came before it, it is one of the most nickel and dime F2P's I've given the time of day. Twenty dollars for a backpack? Seriously? And I can't earn them any way, whatsoever, in the game itself? Yeah, sure, I'll just go ahead and shell out a hundred bucks for five full slot bags, which would be near the equivilent of almost seven months worth of payments for a fifteen dollar subscription MMO. Give me a god damn break.

    Embracing F2P is embracing your desire to be ripped off, wholesale.

    "This is life! We suffer and slave and expire. That's it!" -Bernard Black (Dylan Moran)

  • RyukanRyukan Mason, MIPosts: 706Member Uncommon

    If by "embrace" you mean give it a bear hug of death and squeeze the life out of it until I put it out of my misery...then sure I will embrace it till it dies. Otherwise I will continue to avoid f2p like the plague that it is. Just change the wording to 'free to pay' already and lets stop pretending it is anything other hehe.

  • xenex413xenex413 Springfield, MAPosts: 35Member

    Wrong, F2P is never Cheaper for a person that wants to Compete and Win, I speak with 8 years of experience of leading a guild trough more than a few "Free" to play Games.

    I suggest before making columms liek this you actually try some F2P games such as Rohan Online, Archlord Online, Rose Online, Allods Online, where PvP is part of the game and to win he who has the most money to buy best items is who wins.

    In Rohan Online and Archlord Online I saw many Members unload over $1,000.00 in less than a year, jsut to get the "Exp pills" "drop rate pills" "extra stats pots" etc.. etc...

    not to mention when the Rohan Staff started Selling God like Weapons in the Item Mall for $250 a piece which people gobbled up liek it was nothing, so much for the economic downturn huh?

    if your a player that only logs into a game for 30 mins to an hour walk around do a quest and kill 10 monsters and log off then yes, F2P can be cheaper, but if your a hardcore gamer looking to win and be on th top you will spend WAYYY more than a monthly subcription game.

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  • IsaneIsane EnglandPosts: 2,629Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by SBFord

    Today's The List column is a provocative look at the free to play movement in games these days. MMORPG.com writer Bill Murphy has four reasons why you need to embrace the F2P movement. See if you agree or disagree.

    Let me first state that this isn’t a distinct attempt to ruffle feathers. It’s merely a list of several reasons that the current trend of taking underperforming games and turning them into F2P titles is not succinctly “a bad thing”. Sure, right now it seems like little more than a marketing trend or a grasping-at-straws tactic for games with falling subscription numbers. But I’m of the mind that it’s one part of the greater evolution of the genre in the West. The space is getting crowded, and in order for variety to survive certain steps need to be taken to differentiate one product from another. The cost is only one piece of the puzzle, but it may be the most important one for some games. Let’s take a look at just why you shouldn’t be afraid of the current F2P Movement.

    Read The List and then let us know what you think.


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    Dreamworls of a post , adding no value to any argument.

    MMO subscriptions are one of the cheapest forms of entertainment.... F2P isn't because anything decent has more hidden costs, knowing what has to be paid on a monthly basis is no issue whatsoever. I guess unless you are a doley.

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    Sorcery must persist, the future is the Citadel 

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