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Does Retention Matter?

13

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  • JubbaJubba Thibodaux, LAPosts: 18Member

    who cares about GW1 retention?  Anet basically said they were putting all their attention on GW2 so its only natural that the players droped off, and  compareing GW1 to WoW is pointless, they are 2 diff types of games and Blizz is still trying to keep the game alive and Anet has more important things to work on.

  • SuperXero89SuperXero89 Amory, MSPosts: 2,544Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Jubba

    who cares about GW1 retention?  Anet basically said they were putting all their attention on GW2 so its only natural that the players droped off, and  compareing GW1 to WoW is pointless, they are 2 diff types of games and Blizz is still trying to keep the game alive and Anet has more important things to work on.

    And what happens when they get ready to develop GW3?  Lest we forget, development for GW2 was first announced like 5 years ago.  What does this mean?  It means that GW1 basically spent all of about 2 years as a relevant game in the multiplayer role playing genre.  Once they announced development on GW2, the frequency and quality of content updates dropped dramatically and the game faded away from the face of the earth.  I guess Anet will have more important things to work on at that point?

    What does this have to do with GW2?  For the same reason we worry about TSW because of what we know about Funcom, we should worry about GW2 from what we know about the original.  Spare me the "BUT BUT BUT GW1 WAS NOT AN MMO!" stuff.  An MMORPG is whatever the developers wish to call an MMORPG.  Just because Anet is now labeling GW2 as an MMORPG doesn't mean that the game will end up any different.  More than anything, it seems to me like Anet is only calling GW2 an MMO because they no longer instance all the outside areas.

  • GuileplayerGuileplayer NYC, NYPosts: 418Member

    Originally posted by DannyGlover

    Gw2 isnt being made to retain players. You can pick up where you left off at anytime and remain competitive. You can ay this alongside other mmos. The devs have said it themselves. Of course if you want to stay in this world as your permanent home go for it. All you need is a few people to get everything done in this game anyway.

     

     

    Yeah i agree with you. I think people will play GW2 for couple of weeks reach lvl 80. Do some PvP and WvWvW. get bored and quit. Come back again if someting new is added play and quit. Buy the new expansion play and quit. But it being b2p definitely allows for freedom. I do think this game will be a secondary game to most MMOers who already play WoW or other big MMOs. People will drop back in once in a while to say hi do some matches and log off. Nothing to keep large number of players to log in everyday.

    Currently Playing: SSFIV AE, SFxTekken, SWTOR, WoW. Waiting for: GW2, Resident Evil 6.

  • JubbaJubba Thibodaux, LAPosts: 18Member

    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    Originally posted by Jubba

    who cares about GW1 retention?  Anet basically said they were putting all their attention on GW2 so its only natural that the players droped off, and  compareing GW1 to WoW is pointless, they are 2 diff types of games and Blizz is still trying to keep the game alive and Anet has more important things to work on.

    And what happens when they get ready to develop GW3?

     yeah you are right waht was i thinking? developers dont try to move forward and build better games

  • SuperXero89SuperXero89 Amory, MSPosts: 2,544Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Jubba

    Originally posted by SuperXero89


    Originally posted by Jubba

    who cares about GW1 retention?  Anet basically said they were putting all their attention on GW2 so its only natural that the players droped off, and  compareing GW1 to WoW is pointless, they are 2 diff types of games and Blizz is still trying to keep the game alive and Anet has more important things to work on.

    And what happens when they get ready to develop GW3?

     yeah you are right waht was i thinking? developers dont try to move forward and build better games

    So GW2 will have an effective lifespan of all of around 2 years before Anet moves forward to build better games?

  • CelciusCelcius Franklin, TNPosts: 1,000Member Uncommon

    Player retention does not matter much for Guild Wars 2. Since activity does not really matter, retention does not matter. As long as they continue to sell expansions the game will be a success. The first game was a huge success for this reason, maybe not this reason alone, but it was probably the biggest drawi to the game. (The lack of a sub or having to commit yourself to it)

  • JubbaJubba Thibodaux, LAPosts: 18Member

    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    Originally posted by Jubba

    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    Originally posted by Jubba

    who cares about GW1 retention?  Anet basically said they were putting all their attention on GW2 so its only natural that the players droped off, and  compareing GW1 to WoW is pointless, they are 2 diff types of games and Blizz is still trying to keep the game alive and Anet has more important things to work on.

    And what happens when they get ready to develop GW3?

     yeah you are right waht was i thinking? developers dont try to move forward and build better games

    So GW2 will have an effective lifespan of all of around 2 years before Anet moves forward to build better games?

     Anet had to kill GW1 in order to move forward with their MMO vision, they wanted to bring guild wars in a direction that GW1 would never let them go, because of the massive changes they wanted to apply to the core of the game they could not just update and patch GW1, so they had to scrap GW1 and start from almost scratch, thats why i said GW1 retention does not matter Anet has more important things to tend to

  • Master10KMaster10K LondonPosts: 3,065Member

    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    Originally posted by Jubba


    Originally posted by SuperXero89


    Originally posted by Jubba

    who cares about GW1 retention?  Anet basically said they were putting all their attention on GW2 so its only natural that the players droped off, and  compareing GW1 to WoW is pointless, they are 2 diff types of games and Blizz is still trying to keep the game alive and Anet has more important things to work on.

    And what happens when they get ready to develop GW3?

     yeah you are right waht was i thinking? developers dont try to move forward and build better games

    So GW2 will have an effective lifespan of all of around 2 years before Anet moves forward to build better games?

    Yeah, sure. Feel free to believe that if it will ease the pain and the disappointment of past MMOs. As for me, I'll be enjoying GW2 and the expansions that follow.

    image

  • cali59cali59 B, NYPosts: 1,634Member

    Originally posted by Guileplayer

    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    When leveling, the promise of the next level is enough to keep players interested as long as the journey is compelling enough.  When you reach the max level; however, you no longer have the promise of reaching another character level to keep you going.  As a result, most of everything that constitutes "endgame" in modern MMORPGs revolves around artificial mechanics that encourage sub retention, hence endlessly grinding dungeons in WoW for better gear which then allows you access to higher end dungeons which give you better gear which give you access to gear in raid zones.  Heck, in WoW, you're even limited as to how many badges you can earn per week in order to prevent you from speeding too fast through the content.  Raiding itself is a prime example of stupid mechanics designed for no other purpose than to keep you paying them money every month.  The very idea that you go into an area with 10-20 other players in hopes that the one item for your class drops and that you are the one out of 3 other players of the same class that wins the roll.  It seems that if developers were interested in making the game rewarding rather than a grind where you just keep treading the hampster wheel, they have thought up a better loot method.

    With Guild Wars 2, I've heard a lot of talk from Arenanet about how they just want to make a fun game that doesn't have the traditional MMORPG grind, but what I have not heard from them is any talk about how they still intend to keep players longterm even without these traditional retention mechanics.  I think it's great that they seek to get away from that, but if they want to do it successfully, they're going to have to come up with a better way to retain players and not simply not caring whether or not they retain anyone.  I see GW2 as a collection of minigames, glorified public quests, PvP, and dungeons -- something that sounds like a lot of fun for a month or two but also something I can see myself exhausting shortly afterwards much like the original Guild Wars.  Rolling alts and doing who knows what other menial tasks which have kept the 2,000 people still playing Guild Wars for all these years when the game has been pretty much forgotten by pretty much everyone else simply isn't going to suite me, and unless they do a better job with meaningful content at the level cap, GW2 really won't be a long term destination for most people -- especially the community of this website.

    wow very well put man. I agree with you that i don't see Guild Wars 2 having anything long term for players to stick around. GW2 is gonna end up having the same fate as GW 1 IMO.

     Do you even listen to yourselves?  Raiding and loot progression is a stupid mechanic but GW2 has nothing to retain players because it doesn't have it.  Ok.

    I'm responding to these posts because this is where it started, but I see again all this talk of the "fate" of GW1.  Now it's moved on to that of course they're immediately going to make GW3 and leave GW2 out to dry.  Seriously?  GW1 was a first time game made by a tiny company who realized they couldn't do the things they wanted to do with the engine they had.  That people are playing it AT ALL 4.5 years after they stopped putting out paid content is a testament to the fact that it's actually a pretty good game.

    As far as GW2 retention is concerned, you totally dismiss the idea of replayability.  In a game like WoW, you raid or PVP because there isn't anything else to do.  There were only two leveling paths per faction, you've done all the quests, and leveling again is a completely solo experience.  In GW2, there's 3 personal stories per race, so a minimum of 15 times players could go through the game and have at least part of it be a totally new experience.  There's dynamic events not always running and adding new ones so if you go into a zone again, you might actually see different stuff.  Also there's automatic scaling of players down in level.  The entire world and all the dungeons are viable content for you at max level.  Playing with other people and getting to know them actually sounds pretty good compared to the kind of replay experience you're going to get in WoW.

    And finally, ask yourselves this.  Why does an MMO have to be a full time job?  Why does there even need to be something you have to commit to for 12, 16 or 20 hours a week?  GW2 is a game you can play as much or as little as you want.  Know how long GW2 will last for you if it's the game you play 1-2 nights a week with your friends?  Probably forever, considering its the size of GW1 and all 3 expansions put together.  Wouldn't it be nice to also be able to play TSW or Dominus or whatever and not be locked into one game?

    "Gamers will no longer buy the argument that every MMO requires a subscription fee to offset server and bandwidth costs. It's not true – you know it, and they know it." -Jeff Strain, co-founder of ArenaNet, 2007

  • eye_meye_m Notta Chance, ABPosts: 3,133Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    Originally posted by eyelolled


    Originally posted by Guileplayer


    Originally posted by SuperXero89

    ...Rolling alts and doing who knows what other menial tasks which have kept the 2,000 people still playing Guild Wars for all these years when the game has been pretty much forgotten by pretty much everyone else simply isn't going to suite me, ...

    wow very well put man. I agree with you that i don't see Guild Wars 2 having anything long term for players to stick around. GW2 is gonna end up having the same fate as GW 1 IMO.

    So where do you pull those numbers from? As a player that still has friends playing GW, I go back from time to time just to see who's on and say hi. GW is consistantly populated in virtually every area.  Last weekend there were over 140 instances of one town active. If each instance can support 100 people, then that denotes that 14,000 players were in 1 town at the same time. And I'm really not sure if each instance is limited to 100 people even.  Sure, thats not millions, but it's pretty surprising how many people are still playing GW.

    So Guild Wars was released a year after WoW and according to your estimate, it is only played by around 14,000 people?

    Whether it's 2,000, 14,000, or 20,000, it only shows that GW's long term retention rate was pretty poor.

     

    Again, let me emphasize that if what you want is a nice, casual little game you can pick up and play whenever you feel like it without feeling like you've fell too far behind the curve, I say good for you, but such a game really doesn't deserve the amount of hype it's getting.  As a result, I'm afraid that the hype train may have picked up a bit too much steam.

    well GW2 is clearly not going to be able to pick up the people that can't understand the concept of 14,000 people in one town doesn't mean 14,000 people in the entire game. Those sorts of people aren't the target audience though, because they are morons.  And the simple fact that these morons aren't going to purchase the game, is another reason for even more hype.

    All of my posts are either intelligent, thought provoking, funny, satirical, sarcastic or intentionally disrespectful. Take your pick.

    I get banned in the forums for games I love, so lets see if I do better in the forums for games I hate.

    I enjoy the serenity of not caring what your opinion is.

  • Z3R01Z3R01 NYC, NYPosts: 2,426Member

    Not at all.

    This is why B2p is the way too go. It all rests on initial and long term box sales.

    Sure they will have campaign packs, expansions and other goodies but generally people come back to a game to check that stuff out so retention means very little.

    Playing:

    Waiting on:

  • VhalnVhaln Chicago, ILPosts: 3,159Member

    Originally posted by Z3R01

    Not at all.

    This is why B2p is the way too go. It all rests on initial and long term box sales.

    Sure they will have campaign packs, expansions and other goodies but generally people come back to a game to check that stuff out so retention means very little.

     

    This is the type of thinking that prompted me to ask the question.

    For me, personally, if the game lacks retention, I wont be around to buy expansions.  Kind of like how I almost never buy DLC for singleplayer games.  Once i move on, I tend to be gone for good.  In order to be interested in more content, I need to feel like I'm still currently invested in the game.

    Sometimes I might play a game less, putting it on the back burner for a while, so I can play something new, but once I uninstall a game, it tends to stay uninstalled.

    When I want a single-player story, I'll play a single-player game. When I play an MMO, I want a massively multiplayer world.

  • revy66revy66 NY, NYPosts: 464Member

    Man, people saying that GW has small retention in this thread makes me that much more comfortable that GW2 will be very popular after the years. The game has been bouncing between #20 and #30 on Xfire and is 7th on the MMO list. From the more popular ones, only WoW and EvE precede it. Even if Xfire is not indicative of overal population you have to admit it is doing quite good for all the doom and gloom comments that we see here. Even when I log on myself I constantly see a lot of people hanging around. Keep in mind that ArenaNet haven't put as much time into Guild Wars the last few years due to the fact that they have been focusing on GW2. It will also have a map as big as all the expansion of the first combined and probably a lot more content than when GW first launched.

  • VhalnVhaln Chicago, ILPosts: 3,159Member
    Originally posted by revy66

    Man, people saying that GW has small retention in this thread makes me that much more comfortable that GW2 will be very popular after the years. The game has been bouncing between #20 and #30 on Xfire and is 7th on the MMO list. From the more popular ones, only WoW and EvE precede it. Even if Xfire is not indicative of overal population you have to admit it is doing quite good for all the doom and gloom comments that we see here. Even when I log on myself I constantly see a lot of people hanging around. Keep in mind that ArenaNet haven't put as much time into Guild Wars the last few years due to the fact that they have been focusing on GW2. It will also have a map as big as all the expansion of the first combined and probably a lot more content than when GW first launched.

     

    i regret that i must admit, i never really played gw1. so this question probably sounds about as ignorant as it is, but.. isnt gw1 primarily endgame focused? i wonder if that might have helped its retention, as opposed to being like all these mmos that are all about leveling up, but fall flat at the cap?

    maybe gw2 will manage to be both, but i'm always skeptical.

    When I want a single-player story, I'll play a single-player game. When I play an MMO, I want a massively multiplayer world.

  • bansanbansan blah city, MOPosts: 367Member

    Wow, I don't understand people who build their lives around a game.  That is why you can't understand GW2, because it is meant to be a fun game that you play when you want, and stop when you don't, and start again when they release something interesting.

    GW2 is not as concerned about retention.  What they want is to produce a good, high quality game that you will have fun with for a time.  When they release a new expansion, hopefully you will remember how much fun you had and buy it, and many other people too.  If you like it a lot, you can stick around and play for FREE, and there WILL be many players who will do that.

    They can do that because they are B2P, not charging you a monthly fee to force you to run on a treadmill.  In this way it is very much like other non-mmo games franchises.  Fun, choice, not making you into a rabid, slobbering idiot pixel collecting, dopamine junkie.

  • CetraCetra SingaporePosts: 358Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by bansan

    GW2 is not as concerned about retention.  What they want is to produce a good, high quality game that you will have fun with for a time.  When they release a new expansion, hopefully you will remember how much fun you had and buy it, and many other people too.  If you like it a lot, you can stick around and play for FREE, and there WILL be many players who will do that.

    this ^

  • aionixaionix Fremont, OHPosts: 292Member

    Originally posted by Cetra

    Originally posted by bansan

    GW2 is not as concerned about retention.  What they want is to produce a good, high quality game that you will have fun with for a time.  When they release a new expansion, hopefully you will remember how much fun you had and buy it, and many other people too.  If you like it a lot, you can stick around and play for FREE, and there WILL be many players who will do that.

    this ^

    I 2nd this ^

  • DJJazzyDJJazzy louisville, COPosts: 2,053Member

    Originally posted by aionix

    Originally posted by Cetra


    Originally posted by bansan

    GW2 is not as concerned about retention.  What they want is to produce a good, high quality game that you will have fun with for a time.  When they release a new expansion, hopefully you will remember how much fun you had and buy it, and many other people too.  If you like it a lot, you can stick around and play for FREE, and there WILL be many players who will do that.

    this ^

    I 2nd this ^

    I concur

  • FionFion Montour Falls, NYPosts: 2,351Member

    Originally posted by Vhaln

     

    i regret that i must admit, i never really played gw1. so this question probably sounds about as ignorant as it is, but.. isnt gw1 primarily endgame focused? i wonder if that might have helped its retention, as opposed to being like all these mmos that are all about leveling up, but fall flat at the cap?



    maybe gw2 will manage to be both, but i'm always skeptical.

     

    Well the answer to that question is a hard one. I suppose technically you could say it is end-game focused because the vast majority of content is played at cap. However, in truth the levels don't really matter at all. With only 20, you can generally hit 'cap' within a few hours as an experienced player, depending upon the campaign you chose. Like GW2, the game doesn't begin or end at cap, it just continues. It's also why I think there are no raids in GW2, there simply is no need for a retention mechanic like other, subscription fee based MMOGs.

    I think thats why a 'lot' of people freak out on the guru forums about lack of raids. They haven't wrapped their heads around the fact that GW2 is NOT a game you are meant to play constantly, as often as possible and as long as possible, like most subscription based MMOGs. For this reason there are no carrots on sticks, there are no time sinks to slow down the gameplay experience in order to drag out the game and thus extend a subscription. It's like any other non-MMOG b2p game, like Dota or Neverwinter Nights. You don't play those games for the carrot. You don't play those games to grind raids. You play them to have fun, leave them when your not and return when you want to play them again or try the new expansion or patch, etc. GW2 isn't your typical MMOG and thus shouldn't be thought of as one. Once people understand that they might understand that raiding would be utterly pointless in such a game.

    And I don't know where the whole 'GW has a retention problem' came from because trust me, it doesn't. You can log into the game at any hour of the day and find hundreds of people in various locations in the game. The vast majority of these people are long-term players who have worked hard for the coolest items, the best skills and the hardest to earn titles, etc. But really you cant look at a game designed to be free to play and wonder about it's retention. Since it has no subscription model, retention is a non-issue. I'd be the same as asking if Skyrim has retention problems.

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  • CookieTimeCookieTime SomewherePosts: 353Member

    Some that are saying that GW2 doesn't need retention, doesn't mean it won't have it. Anet said they are going to continue adding more content (like secret DE's and such) for free after launch. One map can one day have 3 extra DE's and players can then explore the old maps again in order to find new stuff.

    Just look at GW1. They keep adding new mini campaigns even now. And for what.. subscriptions? It just shows that retention is still important to them, even if it's not required as much as in other MMO's. So I wouldn't be worried too much.

    Eat me!

  • AlotAlot BredaPosts: 1,948Member

    Originally posted by CookieTime

    Some that are saying that GW2 doesn't need retention, doesn't mean it won't have it. Anet said they are going to continue adding more content (like secret DE's and such) for free after launch. One map can one day have 3 extra DE's and players can then explore the old maps again in order to find new stuff.

    Just look at GW1. They keep adding new mini campaigns even now. And for what.. subscriptions? It just shows that retention is still important to them, even if it's not required as much as in other MMO's. So I wouldn't be worried too much.

    Especially now that they've got a designated team for adding content updates.

  • fiontarfiontar Dana, MAPosts: 3,719Member

    Originally posted by Vhaln

    I've seen a few comments about GW2, to the effect of something like, since it's B2P, it doesn't need an endgame, it doesn't need retention, it doesn't need any of that, because they aren't invested in keeping players subscribing month after month.  They can focus on just making the leveling experience fun, and that's enough.

     

    ..but, is a subscription really that much different than wanting people to buy xpacs?  Or even to have a thriving game that will keep selling more and more boxes, due to its popularity?  I mean, of course being B2P is a big difference in some ways, but in terms of retention?  

     

    Just seems to me that for a lot of players, once they leave an MMO, they move on, without really looking back.  Even if there isn't a sub to worry about.  So I'm just wondering if retention might really be just as important for GW2 as it is for any other MMO.  They do still want a thriving game, that's going to sell expansions, and whatever else, right?

    GW2 needs to think about "retention" on a completely different scale. They don't have to continually justify a monthly fee. They do, however, want people to enjoy the game enough to provide an active community, come back for expansions and maybe buy a few things from the cash shop. They also want people to enjoy the game enough to recommend it to friends and drive sales via "word of mouth". Every person who buys it and feels they got their money worth for the box price is likely to be an ongoing customer. It doesn't matter if they played it as an ongoing MMO, played it like a solo RPG, or played it mostly for the Competative PVP.

    Arenanet has "fun" as the over-riding design goal, rather than "how do we maximize time sinks and treadmills, while minimizing the number of people who decide that the time sinks and treadmills ruined the fun". You can see this in the elimination of trainers or skill books and the ease of which you can teleport through the extensive system of way points. In other games, travel time and forced back and forth trips are important time sinks meant to stretch content and justify ongoing subscription fees. In GW2, there is no need for time sinks. Travel and time just have to be congruent with an immersive game world, rather than being primarily used as "filler".

     

    Want to know more about GW2 and why there is so much buzz? Start here: Guild Wars 2 Mass Info for the Uninitiated
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  • HomituHomitu Hometown, HIPosts: 2,030Member

    Originally posted by Z3R01

    Not at all.

    This is why B2p is the way too go. It all rests on initial and long term box sales.

    Sure they will have campaign packs, expansions and other goodies but generally people come back to a game to check that stuff out so retention means very little.

    But that is precisely the definition of retention in the context of a b2p game: making the game compelling enough that players stick around or come back to purhcase future expansions and DLC.  

    I think most people here agree on this point--they simply differ on whether or not they label this as retention or not.  It's a matter of semantics of the definition of the word "retention."  

  • VhalnVhaln Chicago, ILPosts: 3,159Member

    Originally posted by Homitu

    Originally posted by Z3R01

    Not at all.

    This is why B2p is the way too go. It all rests on initial and long term box sales.

    Sure they will have campaign packs, expansions and other goodies but generally people come back to a game to check that stuff out so retention means very little.

    But that is precisely the definition of retention in the context of a b2p game: making the game compelling enough that players stick around or come back to purhcase future expansions and DLC.  

    I think most people here agree on this point--they simply differ on whether or not they label this as retention or not.  It's a matter of semantics of the definition of the word "retention."  

     

    Hmm, excellent point.  It's like "retention" has become another one of these buzzwords, where people stop thinking about what the word really means, and just love/hate things they associate with it.

    When I want a single-player story, I'll play a single-player game. When I play an MMO, I want a massively multiplayer world.

  • ShivamShivam MilanPosts: 465Member

    Retention matters even for B2P. If i don't like what GW2 has to offer i will not buy expansions and stop playing. Only because it doesn't cost monthly sub means nothing if game isn't enjoyable.

    You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty -- Mahatma Gandhi

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