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The decline in subscriptions (your thoughts)

AxehandleAxehandle Florida, FLPosts: 147Member

When I started playing Mmorpg's a relatively recent 6 years ago the subscription p2p model was all we saw for the mainstream games with the f2p model used on the lesser known titles. Fast forward to today and we are seeing the death of the subscription model. The player base has grown exponentially with the mainstream success of wow, swtor and other mass marketed games which brought more attention to a once niche industry. I feel that the decline in subscriptions is because the base is beginning to normalize and the fickle masses are moving on to the next big thing leaving parts of the original base and some holdovers from the newer generation of mmorpg'ers. Less players means less money for the gaming companies and that is why i believed the f2p with microtransactions and cash shops will be the future of mmorpgs. Still that's just my reason for the decline in subscriptions I'd love to hear other theories on this and whether the shift is a good or bad thing for the industry.

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Comments

  • OnomasOnomas Rock Hill, SCPosts: 1,128Member Uncommon

    Thats because there are no real epic mmorpgs to subscribe to lol. Rift, EQ2, WOW, and a few others still have subs because they are decent games with lots of content. Todays games, you skip half the content, and forced downa path. You can only do that so many times before you get bored. You can only do dailies, raids, and warzones so many times before it kicks in " why am i wasing my time doing this instead of exploring a world/game/immersion.

    6 years ago the mmo's actualy meant something, had a purpose, had a goal, had freedom. Today, none of that happens, and many dont see it.

    50 cents a day, for a sub. 50 cents! Is not a lot for 24/7 unlimited content and no cash shops to milk you.

     

    I think once some better games come out that charge subs, you will see the opposite of your post.

     

    Take a themepark from 5-6 years ago, now look at them today. See how much worse they have become? In mmorpg standards of course. There is a huge difference. It feels like playing a console rpg now,instead of a real mmo with a game and a world inside.

  • GdemamiGdemami Beau VallonPosts: 7,860Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by Axehandle
    When I started playing Mmorpg's a relatively recent 6 years ago the subscription p2p model was all we saw for the mainstream games with the f2p model used on the lesser known titles. Fast forward to today and we are seeing the death of the subscription model. The player base has grown exponentially with the mainstream success of wow, swtor and other mass marketed games which brought more attention to a once niche industry. I feel that the decline in subscriptions is because the base is beginning to normalize and the fickle masses are moving on to the next big thing leaving parts of the original base and some holdovers from the newer generation of mmorpg'ers. Less players means less money for the gaming companies and that is why i believed the f2p with microtransactions and cash shops will be the future of mmorpgs. Still that's just my reason for the decline in subscriptions I'd love to hear other theories on this and whether the shift is a good or bad thing for the industry.

    Well, when you have 3 titles on the market, your subscribers do not really have many places to leave you for.

    When you get 20 titles though...


    Market competition and saturation.

  • AxehandleAxehandle Florida, FLPosts: 147Member
    Originally posted by Onomas

    Thats because there are no real epic mmorpgs to subscribe to lol. Rift, EQ2, WOW, and a few others still have subs because they are decent games with lots of content. Todays games, you skip half the content, and forced downa path. You can only do that so many times before you get bored. You can only do dailies, raids, and warzones so many times before it kicks in " why am i wasing my time doing this instead of exploring a world/game/immersion.

    6 years ago the mmo's actualy meant something, had a purpose, had a goal, had freedom. Today, none of that happens, and many dont see it.

    50 cents a day, for a sub. 50 cents! Is not a lot for 24/7 unlimited content and no cash shops to milk you.

     

    I think once some better games come out that charge subs, you will see the opposite of your post.

     

    Take a themepark from 5-6 years ago, now look at them today. See how much worse they have become? In mmorpg standards of course. There is a huge difference. It feels like playing a console rpg now,instead of a real mmo with a game and a world inside.

    But why have they gotten worse over time? Did the devs run out of good ideas? Did the fickle crowd complain so loudly it changed a genre? Did the original base give up and accept crap?

    What caused the change in quality?

  • BanaghranBanaghran HuisoPosts: 869Member
    Originally posted by Axehandle

    But why have they gotten worse over time? Did the devs run out of good ideas? Did the fickle crowd complain so loudly it changed a genre? Did the original base give up and accept crap?

    What caused the change in quality?

    I think the orientation towards the console player was the most significant thing, content and heading wise.

    The overall more sloppy products are just because the companies have gotten larger and are cutting the corners and these days you can get away with much more with the use of advertising and hype than in the past.

    In the real world this is usually resolved with some kind of crash or revolution (technological if nothing else) or something, dunno what will happen with the gaming companies, but we had a rather interesting year, where basically the press and managers are seemingly extremely happy, but noone else is.

    And im having some deja-vus about "bad design"...

    Flame on!

    :)

  • xmechnaxmechna jax, FLPosts: 19Member
    Originally posted by Axehandle

    When I started playing Mmorpg's a relatively recent 6 years ago the subscription p2p model was all we saw for the mainstream games with the f2p model used on the lesser known titles. Fast forward to today and we are seeing the death of the subscription model. The player base has grown exponentially with the mainstream success of wow, swtor and other mass marketed games which brought more attention to a once niche industry. I feel that the decline in subscriptions is because the base is beginning to normalize and the fickle masses are moving on to the next big thing leaving parts of the original base and some holdovers from the newer generation of mmorpg'ers. Less players means less money for the gaming companies and that is why i believed the f2p with microtransactions and cash shops will be the future of mmorpgs. Still that's just my reason for the decline in subscriptions I'd love to hear other theories on this and whether the shift is a good or bad thing for the industry.

     

    the subscription model is not dieing world of warcaft and rift are shining examples , gamers are demanding more from the games they play and the current state of the mmorpg market is a cesspool of money grab companys and devs making it worse with disposeable titles that last  mabey 3 months.

    its hard these days to find a decent game , you have to dive in to the blackdark of the deep internet to find them as of late i have become a fan of indy companys those that dare to be different use fun concepts an create games like xsyon a post apoc sandbox mmorpg or antilia a furry  soon to have  playable dragons.

    some food for the brain in 2004 500k subs was golden  big companys came in and the new bar was set to  2mill+

  • AxehandleAxehandle Florida, FLPosts: 147Member
    Originally posted by xmechna
    Originally posted by Axehandle

    When I started playing Mmorpg's a relatively recent 6 years ago the subscription p2p model was all we saw for the mainstream games with the f2p model used on the lesser known titles. Fast forward to today and we are seeing the death of the subscription model. The player base has grown exponentially with the mainstream success of wow, swtor and other mass marketed games which brought more attention to a once niche industry. I feel that the decline in subscriptions is because the base is beginning to normalize and the fickle masses are moving on to the next big thing leaving parts of the original base and some holdovers from the newer generation of mmorpg'ers. Less players means less money for the gaming companies and that is why i believed the f2p with microtransactions and cash shops will be the future of mmorpgs. Still that's just my reason for the decline in subscriptions I'd love to hear other theories on this and whether the shift is a good or bad thing for the industry.

     

    the subscription model is not dieing world of warcaft and rift are shining examples , gamers are demanding more from the games they play and the current state of the mmorpg market is a cesspool of money grab companys and devs making it worse with disposeable titles that last  mabey 3 months.

    its hard these days to find a decent game , you have to dive in to the blackdark of the deep internet to find them as of late i have become a fan of indy companys those that dare to be different use fun concepts an create games like xsyon a post apoc sanbox mmorpg or antilia a furry  soon to have  playable dragons.

    2 or 3 examples is frankly not enough "proof" to demonstrate the genre is still able to support the sub based model when you have dozens of titles going either f2p or the ever popular buy to play. You name 3 sub games that are still holding on and  I will come back with 4-5 times as many free games. The market is shifting. I personally like the p2p because it gives the gamers the power to make suggestions that are taken seriously by devs whereas a free system likely has less suggestions used for changes and more whims of the companies.

  • RoxtarrRoxtarr Freeland, MI, MIPosts: 1,122Member

    Decline of subscriptions:

    1. More F2P options

    2. Sub games turning freemium (Lotro, Aion, Swtor)

    3. Single-player games increasing multiplayer support/features

     

    If in 1982 we played with the current mentality, we would have burned down all the pac man games since the red ghost was clearly OP. Instead we just got better at the game.
    image

  • ForumPvPForumPvP KingstownPosts: 871Member

    Theres thousands of games which dont a have sub and atleast 1 of them dies every month.

    But somehow these sub based  games which are or decline,survives.

    Let's internet

  • killion81killion81 A City, MIPosts: 985Member Uncommon

    If there is a decline in subscriptions and if it is due to players not wanting to spend as much money, we can assume that the budget of new games being created will decrease as well.  Investors are not going to put out the same amount of money for a lower return.  This assumes that free to play games do not net as much net revenue as subscription based games.

     

    Personally, I'd rather have high quality games and I'd be willing to pay even more than $15 per month for a well made game that holds my attention for a year+ rather than the month or two of the more recent releases.

  • xmechnaxmechna jax, FLPosts: 19Member
    Originally posted by killion81

    If there is a decline in subscriptions and if it is due to players not wanting to spend as much money, we can assume that the budget of new games being created will decrease as well.  Investors are not going to put out the same amount of money for a lower return.  This assumes that free to play games do not net as much net revenue as subscription based games.

     

    Personally, I'd rather have high quality games and I'd be willing to pay even more than $15 per month for a well made game that holds my attention for a year+ rather than the month or two of the more recent releases.

     

    i agree i would pay15.99 or even 20.00 a month for a good game , but highrolling companys not knowing what they are doing trying to grab asmuch cash as possible being  out of touch with the communitys they want to foster spending time and money on features gamers could give 2 craps about is the hand we are being delt.

  • KyleranKyleran Tampa, FLPosts: 19,981Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by xmechna
    Originally posted by killion81

    If there is a decline in subscriptions and if it is due to players not wanting to spend as much money, we can assume that the budget of new games being created will decrease as well.  Investors are not going to put out the same amount of money for a lower return.  This assumes that free to play games do not net as much net revenue as subscription based games.

     

    Personally, I'd rather have high quality games and I'd be willing to pay even more than $15 per month for a well made game that holds my attention for a year+ rather than the month or two of the more recent releases.

     

    i agree i would pay15.99 or even 20.00 a month for a good game , but highrolling companys not knowing what they are doing trying to grab asmuch cash as possible being  out of touch with the communitys they want to foster spending time and money on features gamers could give 2 craps about is the had we are being delt.

    Now that I think about it, I've been paying CCP about 45.00/month for almost 4 years, so sure, I'd pay more for a quality MMORPG, just not likely that we'll ever see many titles worthy of that expense in the future.

     

    In my day MMORPG's were so hard we fought our way through dungeons in the snow, uphill both ways.
    "I don't have one life, I have many lives" - Grunty
    Still currently "subscribed" to EVE, and only EVE!!!
    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  • VolgoreVolgore Posts: 2,206Member Uncommon

    I think the decline in subs is directly related to the decline of quality games and the hype/expectations of gamers.

    I quit WOW two weeks before cata, but still until today i think that WoW is about the only game worth to pay a subscription for. Perhaps nowadays you can count in Rift-SL ...

    The rest? forget about it...there is a reason why every other game got left behind by players not renewing after 1-3 month and companies begged for players to join their titles F2P.

    image
  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member
    Originally posted by ForumPvP

    Theres thousands of games which dont a have sub and atleast 1 of them dies every month.

    But somehow these sub based  games which are or decline,survives.

    there is always something survives. There are still people making and playing text adventures too.

    But the point is that the trend is obviously f2p. If only 1% of the market is p2p, it still survivies right? But it certainly will not be the dominant business model anymore.

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,734Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Roxtarr

    Decline of subscriptions:

    1. More F2P options

    2. Sub games turning freemium (Lotro, Aion, Swtor)

    3. Single-player games increasing multiplayer support/features

     

          This pretty much nails it....There are just way too many options out there anymore to pay a sub...I can see doing it if you have alot invested (ie 8 years in WoW or something), but I see no reason to start a new game having to pay right off the bat.

  • DSWBeefDSWBeef phoenix, AZPosts: 791Member
    The reason Subs are on the delcine is not due to it being a poor model but due to poor gme choices. VG Buggy as all hell at launch (left bad taste) Same with Aoc, Same with War, Same with aion (more grindy), same with swtor (no content). Rift and TSW hold on because of fast updates and that they still gnerate revenue. If say GW2 was the messiah and was truly amazing and it had a sub it would see wow like numbers.

    Playing: War Thunder, World of Warcraft, and Grim Dawn
    Waiting on:Everquest Next and The Black Desert

  • WizardryWizardry Ontario, CanadaPosts: 8,436Member Uncommon

    It is simple,back then when Wow for example came out,the MMO market was rather new.it is lie kwhen you seee a new gadget come out,everyone wants it and everyone wants apps to use on it.So DSL was new,everyone wants it,then the ywant games to play on it and choices were slim.

    Now the market is saturated and devs are sticking together to deliver half the efort ,while trying to find ways to raise the profit margin.

    Don't let ANY of these devs fool you,weather it is f2p or b2p or whatever model,they have a good idea of how much they plan on spending on production and how much they figure to make back.If they are unsure which MANY are riding the same boat,they simply cut back on DEPTH and just deliver the basics,then see if the game has enough of a following to warrant further spending.

    I beleive we will NEVER see anotehr FFXI ,a game that had a design and stuck it through to the end even tohugh they figured to take 5 years to brweak even.I highly doubt any developer will try that formula again,now they expect instant profits on sales alone,this does not mean good game developement for the players.


    Samoan Diamond

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    1. Are subscriptions really declining?  (since many newer games are offering alternative models, there are many archchair analysts making bold statemets about the future, but how real is that perception?)

    2. Are most customers actually making a rational decision when they pick a business model to buy into?

    3. Is this wave of innovation in business models actually good for the industry in the long term, or will it eventually erode customer trust in the entire marketplace?

    4. For me, as a consumer, the fundemental issue is aligning my interests with the developers' interests.  Every business model has its pros and cons.  The main problem I've had with subscriptions is the perception (right or wrong) that publishers were beginning to take customer loyalty for granted and were spending the money on projects other than the game I was paying for.

  • WolfenprideWolfenpride San''doria, WIPosts: 3,988Member

    Why pay monthly for one game when there is another with essentially the same mechanics for free?

    The exceptions to this seem to be games that are unique within the market. Eve online being a good example.

    I think people have no problem subscribing if a game came out that actually offered a unique experience from other MMO's. Most recent MMO's haven't though.

  • PrecusorPrecusor PalmaPosts: 4,733Member Uncommon

    All mmos with subs are either old as hell or just the same old rehashed garbage... and f2p with its huge cesspool of unimaginative crap is just making things worse. 

  • TalulaRoseTalulaRose Long Island, NYPosts: 480Member Uncommon

    WoW brought MMORPGs out of the closet; An influx of players and money.

    The players it brought did not want games that took months and months to play. The excuse was they didn't have time to play.

    Companies realized that they could make a single player RPG and charge a sub.

    The old school players warned the new generation of MMORPG players that what they were doing was detrimental to the MMORPG landscape.

    Now we are left with single player games masquerading as a MMORPG and alot of transient "I don't have time to play" gamers jumping on the "all games should be free because you gave me what I wanted and they all suck" bandwagon.

  • joonkp1976joonkp1976 seoulPosts: 93Member
    Originally posted by Axehandle

    When I started playing Mmorpg's a relatively recent 6 years ago the subscription p2p model was all we saw for the mainstream games with the f2p model used on the lesser known titles. Fast forward to today and we are seeing the death of the subscription model. The player base has grown exponentially with the mainstream success of wow, swtor and other mass marketed games which brought more attention to a once niche industry. I feel that the decline in subscriptions is because the base is beginning to normalize and the fickle masses are moving on to the next big thing leaving parts of the original base and some holdovers from the newer generation of mmorpg'ers. Less players means less money for the gaming companies and that is why i believed the f2p with microtransactions and cash shops will be the future of mmorpgs. Still that's just my reason for the decline in subscriptions I'd love to hear other theories on this and whether the shift is a good or bad thing for the industry.

    F2P bandwagoning...  Cheapos want them, but still many decent players prefer better games over F2P games I believe.  I am a kind of player who would dish out up to $30 a month for a sub if the game just is that good.  Games like Neverwinter being released where it is decent enough to satisfy most players' MMORPG needs being F2P the undustry seems to perish a bit.  But still computer industry all together rakes billions and still raking billions, not to mention games industry billions, and MMO industry hundreds of millions.  I am also 70's birthed person who played through P2P era and I feel sad when I think about current F2p bandwagoning hurting quality games from being developed.  In the end you got cheapo kids playing F2P 'crap' games and no good games for real players.  A picture that blinds my mind.  Anyways I give a vote to F2P massing a bad thing since $15 a month really does not hurt many people's budget.  Good gaming, folks~!

  • free2playfree2play Toronto, ONPosts: 1,868Member Uncommon

    Peretuum Online

    Independent Development Team

    Subscription based

    Sand Box

    Open world with FFAA PvP zones

     

    Nobody plays it. You could pay a year and it would be under $100, do nothing, let EP build. Nobody is there.

    Say one thing, do another. People want the spoon fed, free in 3 months eye candy. The money talks, the numbers don't lie.

  • phantomghostphantomghost Atlanta, GAPosts: 692Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Onomas

    Thats because there are no real epic mmorpgs to subscribe to lol. Rift, EQ2, WOW, and a few others still have subs because they are decent games with lots of content. Todays games, you skip half the content, and forced downa path. You can only do that so many times before you get bored. You can only do dailies, raids, and warzones so many times before it kicks in " why am i wasing my time doing this instead of exploring a world/game/immersion.

    6 years ago the mmo's actualy meant something, had a purpose, had a goal, had freedom. Today, none of that happens, and many dont see it.

    50 cents a day, for a sub. 50 cents! Is not a lot for 24/7 unlimited content and no cash shops to milk you.

     

    I think once some better games come out that charge subs, you will see the opposite of your post.

     

    Take a themepark from 5-6 years ago, now look at them today. See how much worse they have become? In mmorpg standards of course. There is a huge difference. It feels like playing a console rpg now,instead of a real mmo with a game and a world inside.

    I agree.  And then of course I will always have a bias towards my first MMO: Everquest. Unfortunately, once I quit it was never the same in any attempt I have made trying to go back.

    photo SIG_zpszteuyd0ejpg
  • DavisFlightDavisFlight Talahasee, FLPosts: 2,556Member
    Modern "MMOs" are not designed as social virtual worlds. With very little player interaction, long term bonds are harder to form and content gets stale a lot quicker. Thus, people burn through the scripted linear content and move on. Whats more, these themeparks are almost all identical, which means people burn out all the quicker.
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