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Paid Beta = bad practice

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  • zytinzytin Fresno, CAPosts: 193Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Larsa

    Remember the times when games didn't even have a pre-order?

    You went to a retailer and bought a box, just like everybody else. And no special, super V.I.P. or collectors or digital deluxe edition, because all that stuff didn't exist. And then the gaming industry learned that many gamers enjoy getting nickeled and dimed.

    And thus you now buy a digital deluxe edition with a "unique" item that every buyer of that edition gets and people don't even complain that their "unique" item is everything but unique. And everybody else can buy that "unique" item in the cash shop 6 months after release anyway.

    And now the gaming industry has learned that they can sell the product (pre-purchase) well before release. Won't take long and we'll see deals like "Pay today - play in 3 years". :)

    http://www.kickstarter.com

     

    Notice, you don't actually buy shares into the game, where you gain profit from the success of the game...you just get a copy of the game with X extras where X depends on the amount you give (not invest in) them.  

  • musicmannmusicmann port allen, LAPosts: 1,107Member

    Originally posted by QSatu

    People should learn what beta means. no it doesn not mean free demo. Although more and more game companies use it like that. It doesn't matter how you get into beta. Whether you pay or not.

    There was some misunderstandings. ANet should have stated that beta weekend ARE for testing and not free demos. Apparently a lot of people misundertood. (and i believe marketing division wanted people to misunderstand that too)

    What's happening with GW2 this weekend is not a beta. It is in fact a pay to stress test the servers/demo. There's no required NDA and no one is being asked to find bugs or any problems. Like i said, if Anet, Bioware or any other dev company wanted to be more stand up about it, they should/could have invited all the community menbers that are and were registered on their official forums.

  • niceguy3978niceguy3978 Gainesville, FLPosts: 2,000Member

    Originally posted by musicmann

    Originally posted by QSatu

    People should learn what beta means. no it doesn not mean free demo. Although more and more game companies use it like that. It doesn't matter how you get into beta. Whether you pay or not.

    There was some misunderstandings. ANet should have stated that beta weekend ARE for testing and not free demos. Apparently a lot of people misundertood. (and i believe marketing division wanted people to misunderstand that too)

    What's happening with GW2 this weekend is not a beta. It is in fact a pay to stress test the servers/demo. There's no required NDA and no one is being asked to find bugs or any problems. Like i said, if Anet, Bioware or any other dev company wanted to be more stand up about it, they shopuld have invited all the community menbers that are and were registered on their official forums.

    I tend to agree with this, but I'm willing to give them some benefit of the doubt.  Now if they do not have a situation where everyone who wants to try the game can, then they have gotten into a situation where they have charged people to even try the game before release.  I am trying to picture someone going to McDonalds and paying 5 dollars for a couple of french fries from the meal they will get next week.  If they have a completely open beta where everyone can try it, then I have much less of a problem with the way they are doing things.  Only in the entertainment industry are you expected to pay for something withouth the possibility of a refund.  

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,474Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Quizzical

    So long as you don't pay for beta access yourself, it's not a problem for you.

    If you were running a game company and lots of people were willing to throw money at you to get access to the beta, would you accept it?  If not, then that's why you're not running a game company.

    I am generally against the pay for beta because I am an old software dev who still sees beta as testing not marketing.  That being said, I think I would consider selling special event access tickets for $10.00+ per event access.  Then hold say a dozen different events.  This wouldn't be selling the game, just access to each event.  If you want the game, you still have to buy it.

  • illyanaillyana quezon cityPosts: 614Member Uncommon

    Hello?!?! you DIDNT pay for the beta

    you paid for the whole GAME! you own the game now. Beta access is an extra, a bonus, an incentive for prepurchashing. you get it for FREE for prepurchasing

    image
    Have fun storming the castle! - Miracle Max

  • MetentsoMetentso BarcelonaPosts: 1,436Member Common

    Originally posted by stayBlind

    Oh man, I paid for the beta?

    Guess I'll have to buy the game when it comes out.



    You didn't pay the beta with the money you spent. That was to buy the game. You payed for the beta by buying the game earlier, giving the money early, having less information... basically taking a bigger risk buying.

  • Bandw2Bandw2 newark, CAPosts: 6Member

    Originally posted by stevebmbsqd

    Originally posted by nilden

    Originally posted by Pocahinha

    No, the problem is people getting into a BETA thinking it will play without any bugs or probles like a game with 6 years post release...i call that stupidity and there is lots of it .

    Well when you pay full price your not a tester your a customer.

    This. They should have waited for the game to be optimized prior to starting the weekend "events". Note they were called "events" and not tests.

    "events" isn't the key word, BETA is, its pre-gold so it isn't even an entire game let alone one thats being patched. BETA is much worse then a demo BTW, demos are specifically designed and built to run for only that section of the game.

  • SarethorSarethor Hillsboro, ORPosts: 41Member

    Threads like this are fairly embarrassing on several levels.  Even the definition of beta testing can't be agreed upon and that's not even touching this ridiculous claim that this weekend is "paying for the beta".

    Let me make an analogy that even the dullest knives in this drawer might grasp:  If you had to pay to test drive a car THEN turn around and pay full price for it afterward, THAT would be what you're claiming with GW2.  This is not the scenario with this game so please stop embarrassing yourselves.

    Additionally, the game still is in the beta stage.  The complete one-through-n list of goals for this weekend aren't public knowledge but clearly a heavy loading of the datacenter/network infrastructure is part of it but definitely not all of it.

    The biggest "problem" regarding the internet is that it's a platform for people to show some, or all, their defeciencies as a person then turn around and claim they have none.

    The internet is an amazing platform for some people to showcase their deficiencies as a person.

    Regards,
    Sarethor

  • SarethorSarethor Hillsboro, ORPosts: 41Member

    Originally posted by Metentso

    Originally posted by stayBlind

    Oh man, I paid for the beta?

    Guess I'll have to buy the game when it comes out.



    You didn't pay the beta with the money you spent. That was to buy the game. You payed for the beta by buying the game earlier, giving the money early, having less information... basically taking a bigger risk buying.

    He was being sarcastic.

    The internet is an amazing platform for some people to showcase their deficiencies as a person.

    Regards,
    Sarethor

  • Bandw2Bandw2 newark, CAPosts: 6Member

    Originally posted by Larsa

    Remember the times when games didn't even have a pre-order?

    You went to a retailer and bought a box, just like everybody else. And no special, super V.I.P. or collectors or digital deluxe edition, because all that stuff didn't exist. And then the gaming industry learned that many gamers enjoy getting nickeled and dimed.

    And thus you now buy a digital deluxe edition with a "unique" item that every buyer of that edition gets and people don't even complain that their "unique" item is everything but unique. And everybody else can buy that "unique" item in the cash shop 6 months after release anyway.

    And now the gaming industry has learned that they can sell the product (pre-purchase) well before release. Won't take long and we'll see deals like "Pay today - play in 3 years". :)

    "unique"ness in a game item, does not mean it is the only one, in game terms it is an item with only one obtainable method. if the item is not unique then it can be obtained from multiple sources. 

    nickle and dimed? >_> i don't have to pay 150 dollars so i can get a charr statuett, but if i want one i can buy it and give more money to the developer, the more money they get, the more they can produce. you can just buy the game or you can pay more money for additional options, i don't look at it as a way for teh company to ring more out of the community. i personally look at this as a way to give more money to a company if i think they deserve it.

    also, getting money from customers this early in the development cycle can have a far reaching impact, where before they were getting low on money and the producer was not going to give more, now they have more cash and can continue working on the game pre-release making the game more like the intended design. the games you see where they promised things and then they weren't there, are the games that ran out of money. it's like investing, you put money in hoping for it to give you a greater return because you did.

    its like im going to wait... the game came out oh look the reviews are sorta bad, it's unpolished? <- right there, unpolished, they ran out of money had to ship to get something and not go negative. most games do not actually get a return on how much money was put into them, only the big titles do, mostly franchieses(spelling?), and thats why we see them go on for so long now, the gameing industry is finally learning what returns a profit and what doesn't. 

  • RednecksithRednecksith Madison heights, MIPosts: 1,238Member

    It's not that hard, people. You paid money up front = You get the game upon release and beta access. Access is part of the deal, therefore it's paying to get into beta.

    As far as that issue itself goes, I don't really care what people spend their money on. I see nothing wrong with making the option available for those who can afford it. Unlike most people in the world these days, I don't hate people with more money than myself. They've usually earned it.

  • TommayTommay SalisburyPosts: 24Member

    I and many other people where under the impression that the beta events where purely mass advertisment and stress testing, playing the game it's obvious there some big problems.

    It got a very similar feel to swtor in a way, something you can't put your finger on, but something just doesn't feel right, the game just hasn't been optimised yet is what I'm hoping it is, but I have a bad feeling it might be something deeper then that.

  • mikahrmikahr ZagrebPosts: 1,066Member

    Someone is paying for the beta?

    Without actually getting the game?

    Can you do that?

    Right.

  • HorrorScopeHorrorScope Norcal, CAPosts: 612Member

    Originally posted by Anireth

    Or buy a car, get it in a year.

     

    Haven't heard of that one. Perhaps it's super-exotics, I don't know anyone close that has one.

  • AmjocoAmjoco Layton, UTPosts: 4,778Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by nilden

    Originally posted by Pocahinha

    No, the problem is people getting into a BETA thinking it will play without any bugs or probles like a game with 6 years post release...i call that stupidity and there is lots of it .

    Well when you pay full price your not a tester your a customer.

    No you are a customer when it releases.

    Death is nothing to us, since when we are, Death has not come, and when death has come, we are not.

  • solpariahsolpariah North Richland Hills, TXPosts: 17Member Uncommon
    As a gamer, I'm alwasy going to be buying games. If I pre-order at gamestop (which I always do) then even if I have to pay the whole thing off, I'm getting a taste for it in beta, always keeping in mind that beta's purpose is to knock out the bugs and glitches or performance issues. If i don't like it, even considering the bugs and glitches were to get knocked out before release, I can just put it on something else. The more people you have paying full price like this for beta, the less likely it will be crowded. If Guild Wars 2 wasn't appealing, the servers wouldn't remain constantly loaded like they have been. I love this game personally. A game this beautiful being, at minimum , $60 and charging no subscription fee is stunning.
  • MetentsoMetentso BarcelonaPosts: 1,436Member Common

    Originally posted by Sarethor

    Originally posted by Metentso

    Originally posted by stayBlind

    Oh man, I paid for the beta?

    Guess I'll have to buy the game when it comes out.



    You didn't pay the beta with the money you spent. That was to buy the game. You payed for the beta by buying the game earlier, giving the money early, having less information... basically taking a bigger risk buying.

    He was being sarcastic.

    Yes. In a way that seems you didn't get, judging from your comment. He was saying it would be absurd to consider he payed for beta because that would mean he didnt pay for the game.. But it really isn't absurd because he payed for beta, not with the money but with the 'risk' of buying early, as I said in my comment. 

  • FrodoFraginsFrodoFragins Manchester, NHPosts: 2,926Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by nilden

    I feel like it's a bad business practice to charge full price so people can get in beta. Traditionally people would sign up for beta and the company would select people from a pool of applicants then go to open beta letting in the general public and stress testing. These people are free testers for the company of an unfinished product in beta. They would help test, find bugs, provide feedback, and improve the software. All of this free testing for the company. Then when the game is ready to release you would pay the full price for a finsihed,polished, tested product. I feel like it sets a bad presidence when a company takes the full purchase price before they have a fully complete and released product.

    Juding by the fact that digital copies were sold out for guild wars 2 it seems like people don't care and are willing to just throw money at companies before getting a finished product. I feel that the company should be more responsible and say please by all means test our game we will only charge you for a released product not something still in beta, which has been the stand for many years.

    Pre-orders are fine 5-10 bucks down so you reserve a copy at release is a lot different than paying full price in advance when it's truly only to get in a beta.

    Have some faith in your product and charge people at release for a complete game. Am I the only person who feels this way?

    I agree 100%.

  • TheDeadlyMouseTheDeadlyMouse Beckley, WVPosts: 103Member Uncommon

    I agree, to me it just lets anyone in. It ends up letting in those that could careless about testing and reporting problems, they just want to be the first to play!

    Another problem I've noticed is beta's used to be open for weeks to months, only down for patches. Now a days it seems like beta's are up for a weekend or maybe a half a week or so at a time. Kinda hard to test a game that's not up that much.

  • BetakodoBetakodo Poor land, FLPosts: 338Member

    Originally posted by Amjoco

    Originally posted by nilden

    Originally posted by Pocahinha

    No, the problem is people getting into a BETA thinking it will play without any bugs or probles like a game with 6 years post release...i call that stupidity and there is lots of it .

    Well when you pay full price your not a tester your a customer.

    No you are a customer when it releases.

    Noun

    customer (plural customers)



    1. A patron; one who purchases or receives a product or service from a business or merchant, or intends to do so.


       



    2. (informal) A person, especially one engaging in some sort of interaction with others.


    They knew people treated betas like demos. They said it themselves. Funny how quick people are to jump to the it'z betaaa defense now. Also, stress test was last weekend and not for people who paid.


     


    If you ask me not only is it poor form to charge for a beta, it's worse to hold the game hostage for 3 days because you didn't pay way ahead of time. You're losing potential profit of $60! Not that you could do much investment wise with that little, but it bugs me how little we really got on the day we pre-purchased. You went into the store, handed over $60 and waited until this weekend to actually get something back.

  • bookworm438bookworm438 Detroit, MIPosts: 647Member

    While I may not entirely agree with it, I can see a couple reasons why they did it, from a testing stand point and a business stand point.

     

    The most obvious reason why they opened up prepurchasing for beta would be to begin getting a return on their investment in the game. The sooner you make up how much you invested in development, the sooner you begin making a profit, the sooner you can get to work on the next expansion, etc. They knew they had lots of people interested in buying the game, so why not just exploit that a bit and begin making money. Remember, they are a business first. As the consumer, it's falls on you to do your research and know what you are getting for your money. I thought it was clear that with the ~BETA~ weekends, not everything will run OK at first.

    Another reason I can see them doing it is to guarantee a return of customers weekend after weekend, up to release to guarantee they have enough people to stress test. Lets put it this way, if they just opened up beta to every person and their dog, people would play say "what is this...I don't even..." and quit, despite the fact IT'S BETA. So by forcing people to pay, unless you are lucky enough to get in through the selection, you are pretty much guaranteeing people will come back the next event. This will allow them to continue to stress test the server, and fine tune things. We'll probably see that the next event, the game will be MUCH better than it is now.

    If you, as a consumer, are not going to try to make sure you get the best return on YOUR investment by giving them feedback where necessary, then you might want to rethink how you spend your money. If you payed full price for the game, don't just exit out of those blue things that pop up. Actually rate things, and use those little comment things. Also report bugs you see. By doing this, you guarantee that the each chance you get to play, it'll be a little better up through release. Once release hits, you'll have an awesome game! 

    But ultimately it falls to us as the consumer  to be responsible for your own money. Businesses, even ArenaNet, will do whatever it takes to get your money. It's your responsibility to know what exactly you are spending your money on. It's ALWAYS foolish to spend money on a product before you have it permanently (yes I'm being hypocritical here, but you get my point). Before you bought the game, you should have realized that as soon as you saw 'guaranteed beta access', that you'll get access to a version of the game that's NOT COMPLETE. When it's not complete, IT WILL HAVE BUGS, LAG, ETC.. If you didn't realize that that's apart of what you'll be getting for your money until release, then you have no one else to blame but yourself.

    NOTE: I am not defending Anet's methodology, nor am I hating on Anet's methodology. I'm completely neutral on the matter. I'm just playing devils advocate and am not getting worked up over something that's not even released. IF there were these problems on release, then I'd understand the outrage. 

     

    Considering most of my posts are ignored, as they are usually rational (and this is a forum, rational thought is not permitted), I'll include a TL;DR version:

    Anet is a business first. It's your responsibility as a consumer to know what you are signing up for before you hand out cash. It's your responsibility to ensure the game can run on your computer, on your interent connection, in it's pre-release state before purchase. 

  • NildenNilden null, NBPosts: 1,284Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Sarethor

    Threads like this are fairly embarrassing on several levels.  Even the definition of beta testing can't be agreed upon and that's not even touching this ridiculous claim that this weekend is "paying for the beta".

    Let me make an analogy that even the dullest knives in this drawer might grasp:  If you had to pay to test drive a car THEN turn around and pay full price for it afterward, THAT would be what you're claiming with GW2.  This is not the scenario with this game so please stop embarrassing yourselves.

    Additionally, the game still is in the beta stage.  The complete one-through-n list of goals for this weekend aren't public knowledge but clearly a heavy loading of the datacenter/network infrastructure is part of it but definitely not all of it.

    The biggest "problem" regarding the internet is that it's a platform for people to show some, or all, their defeciencies as a person then turn around and claim they have none.

    Well this poor dull knife thinks your analogy is incorrect. Really if you consider the developement process and compare to the car dealer a test drive is a free trail on a released, fully tested, complete product. A beta is much more akin to safety testing a car before it is ever on a public road. In essence it's like asking someone to pay full price to be a crash test dummy. Oh sure you only pay once and you will get that car when it's done but it would be completely embarrasing for a company to ask for the full price on an unfinished product.

    All these people just paid full price and are playing a beta. That is reality.

    How to post links.

    "classification of games into MMOs is not by rational reasoning" - nariusseldon
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  • GiddianGiddian Livonia, MIPosts: 415Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by nilden

    I feel like it's a bad business practice to charge full price so people can get in beta. Traditionally people would sign up for beta and the company would select people from a pool of applicants then go to open beta letting in the general public and stress testing. These people are free testers for the company of an unfinished product in beta. They would help test, find bugs, provide feedback, and improve the software. All of this free testing for the company. Then when the game is ready to release you would pay the full price for a finsihed,polished, tested product. I feel like it sets a bad presidence when a company takes the full purchase price before they have a fully complete and released product.

    Juding by the fact that digital copies were sold out for guild wars 2 it seems like people don't care and are willing to just throw money at companies before getting a finished product. I feel that the company should be more responsible and say please by all means test our game we will only charge you for a released product not something still in beta, which has been the stand for many years.

    Pre-orders are fine 5-10 bucks down so you reserve a copy at release is a lot different than paying full price in advance when it's truly only to get in a beta.

    Have some faith in your product and charge people at release for a complete game. Am I the only person who feels this way?

    Lets get something streight. I didn't buy a Beta. I bought a game I wanted, the beta was a Bonus. This is a great thing, because then you get the people who realy want to play, in the Beta, not the people who are bored and wants to play something.

    The game is NOT without its faults but I am enjoying it.

    image

  • LizardEgyptLizardEgypt Yarmouth, NSPosts: 337Member

    Paid beta = The game is terrible and they managed to get you to pay full price prior to knowing anything about it. Now you already have the remorse to continue playing because you spent $60 already.

    MMORPG players are gullible and will never learn. Paying for a game at launch is risky enough, paying for a game in it's beta stages is even worse. The rest of us wait a month and see if the game is bad before plunging in. (SWTOR)

    Currently playing - FF14ARR
    Previous games - SWG, World of Warcraft, ShadowBane, Warhammer, Age of Conan, Darkfall, Planetside Asheron's Call, Everquest, Everquest 2, Too many.

  • LustsLusts West Melbourne, FLPosts: 23Member

    I half agree and half disagree with this post. You paid for the full game, the beta invite was just a perk. They are still inviting people through a pool of 1,000,000 beta sign-ups they did I believe what, a month ago?

    It's just more of a "Pre-Purchase now and you can get a garunteed spot in beta" for those who don't really want to chance the sign-up thing.

     

    BUT, paying 60-150$ to help improve and test a game IS indeed illogical. It's better to invite a massive wave of sign-ups to stress test and break the game so it's better improved. Though, I can see the whole paying for it might give insentive to actually test the game since you paid for it an all. Why not make it better?

     

    There are usually two sides of the coin with this thing, thus why I half agree and half disagree.

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