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This trend has GOT to stop. Selling weekend, or closed beta access? What? It blows my mind that game pre-orders exist, especially 1 to 1.5 years out, and people buy them. Who would buy a product that doesn't even come out for over a year? Seriously, what's wrong with people?
As far as Founder's packs, to me, this is saying, "Hey, our game isn't done yet, but fund our development, and beta test (or alpha test) our game, and we'll even let you PAY for it!"
You can't make 50-80k as a SQA analyst, or engineer. But let's pay THEM to "let" us test their game. What?
Many games stress test behind the scenes, and even gather all sorts or performance data from you, and you pay them to help test their software. This seems ass-backwards to me, especially as a principal software engineer.
I understand some people think they that are making a game they want better by beta testing, but paying for it? Some of these founder packs are $200!!!! For what, virtual items, and only weekend play time like Neverwinter? I'm the Firefall beta, and it's not even a beta. There's a ton of game content that isn't in the game yet. Sorry, but by definition, that makes in an alpha.
Are people really THIS desperate to play a game?
The worst thing to me is not even playing the game once, and then shelling out $200 on a founders pack. Without even knowing if you like the game or not? Again, what??
Also, I'm not trolling. Just posting an opinion. I really think this is a terrible trend.