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There's something that sits in the back of my mind with F2P games. The makers of the game have proven that they know how to write computer code. They have proven that they know how to network. They have proven that they know we watch population numbers because they offer the product free to get you in the door and some will let you stay quite awhile without paying.
What if you played a game and found out 6 months into it that 90% of the population was generated by the company. All the people logged in all the time that rarely talked was because they were scripted "players" made by the company that made the game.
Would you stay in a game if you found out the population was inflated artificially? Otherwise, you actually enjoy the gameplay itself.
Would you complain or just chalk it up to smart business. What other things would run through your mind. Would you feel the need to expose this information to other players.
My answer is a flat no.