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F2P saved TOR .... probably becoming standard

nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 22,441Member

http://massively.joystiq.com/2013/03/29/gdc-2013-james-ohlen-on-how-f2p-saved-swtor/

"When free-to-play launched in November, it "blew all expectations out of the water," said Ohlen. Subscriptions started going up again. Concurrent players on the servers went way up. Both of those statistics continue to rise. As Ohlen put it, TOR is the second biggest subscription MMORPG in the western world, it has had two million new accounts since the F2P launch, thousands of new players try out the game everyday, and TOR is one of the largest microtransaction money-makers for publisher EA."

Also, interesting that "We didn't have some important social features such as a group finder to make finding groups at the elder game easier" was cited as one of the early problem.

... so LFD and F2P ... turned TOR around.

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Comments

  • rojoArcueidrojoArcueid hell, NJPosts: 6,779Member Uncommon
    F2P was a standard flop savior already. But yeah, its working even with the good'ol'EA McGreedy

    image
  • winterwinter El Paso, TXPosts: 2,276Member Uncommon
     If SW:TOR was saved by F2P then why are they still combining servers like APAC and NA? I maybe wrong but that certainly sounds like they are still losing players
  • rojoArcueidrojoArcueid hell, NJPosts: 6,779Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by winter
     If SW:TOR was saved by F2P then why are they still combining servers like APAC and NA? I maybe wrong but that certainly sounds like they are still losing players

    even if they are losing players now it has more players than when it was sub only, thats for sure.

    image
  • BadOrbBadOrb ManchesterPosts: 791Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by rojo6934
    Originally posted by winter
     If SW:TOR was saved by F2P then why are they still combining servers like APAC and NA? I maybe wrong but that certainly sounds like they are still losing players

    even if they are losing players now it has more players than when it was sub only, thats for sure.

    The APAC servers have never been really busy TBH. It's just taken BioWare a long time to work out what to do for the best with those 3 servers.

    I do believe that F2P has saved SWTOR , even the last few planets on my server are a lot busier than they used to be. I'm glad it's also one of EA's top microtransaction games. This way th game could go on and on for years.

    Cheers,

    BadOrb.

    PSO 4 years , EQOA 4 months , PSU 7 years , SWTOR launch ongoing , PSO2 SEA launch ongoing , Destiny 360 launch ongoing.
    "SWG was not fun. Let it go buddy." quote from iiNoSkillzii 10/18/13
    The original propoganda pixie dust villain :[]

  • hikaru77hikaru77 buenos airesPosts: 1,035Member Uncommon
    it cant be, swtor was dying!!!. Or at least that is what some people here and all over the internet was talking, the truth is far away from that. 
  • azmundaiazmundai St Louis, MOPosts: 1,417Member

    this again? clearly it was the pricing model (the only thing they have actually seemed to do anything to change) and not the horrible endgame / mechanics that needed saving. the PR machine is sounding pretty desperate to sell cartel coins at this point.

    and how is it exceeding expectations when it was estimated they would gain as many as 50 million new players?

    I especially like the part about building an engine (which the bought and modified) that can support 300 people working on it. Where are those 300 people now? Poor guys.

    Lastly, I just LOVE how he is calling everything elder game. /cough RIPOFF /cough

    LFD tools are great for cramming people into content, but quality > quantity.
    I am, usually on the sandbox .. more "hardcore" side of things, but I also do just want to have fun. So lighten up already :)

  • C_GlassC_Glass That one place, MEPosts: 29Member
    Nice to see some positive SWTOR news for a change, hard to imagine the infamous 'tortanic' is still the second most subbed game in the west. It sounds like F2P is going to sustain SWTOR for a VERY long time, it will be interesting to see how the game changes and evolves through the next few years. 
  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon

    F2P only saved it temporarily, as the game still has the same short attention life span as it did from launch, althought the F2P restrictions may slow people down. In June 2012 it still had more than 1 million subscribers.

    2 million new accounts is not all that great considering, when 2 million actually bought it at lanch, and WOW has what 10 million subs? If SWTOR is like WOW where are the other 6 million who surely must be curious about the game? Simple fact is they can not be bothered as F2P has not improved the game any, F2P just enabled people to play the same game as at launch which lost 1.5 million subs by the time it went F2P, without paying.

  • BadOrbBadOrb ManchesterPosts: 791Member Uncommon

    I like the sound of BioWare will be EA's lead MMORPG department and we might even get a new SW one or another IP. Still it can take about 6 years to make one , hopefully they are working on one , well they are working on Ultima Online and so maybe that's one of them.

    It's great to read about the fact all the money spent wasn't on VO or cut scenes and dev's shouldn' be afraid of having them in their games. The amount of times I have read all that money just on VO on websites such as this , at least now we have the ( possible ) truth.

    More expansions coming our way , yay!

    Cheers,

    BadOrb.

    PSO 4 years , EQOA 4 months , PSU 7 years , SWTOR launch ongoing , PSO2 SEA launch ongoing , Destiny 360 launch ongoing.
    "SWG was not fun. Let it go buddy." quote from iiNoSkillzii 10/18/13
    The original propoganda pixie dust villain :[]

  • Sevenstar61Sevenstar61 Centreville, VAPosts: 1,690Member Uncommon

    I would love to see Mass Effect MMO. Or even Dragon Age MMO :)

    Sure it's very crowdy in SWTOR lately... F2P makes more people to try the game, despite all hate... based on what I read in General chat comments.. lots of popl try, like it and then sub... good thing.

    That James Ohlsen finally showed up it's a very good news. I genuinly like the guy.

    image
    Sith Warrior - Story of Hate and Love http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxKrlwXt7Ao
    Imperial Agent - Rise of Cipher Nine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBBj3eJWBvU&feature=youtu.be
    Imperial Agent - Hunt for the Eagle Part 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQqjYYU128E

  • KareliaKarelia HeraklionPosts: 668Member

    its about time sub model to die or at least drop at a 5-10$ / month max. with so many games out there, giving 50-70$ to buy the game + 15$ / month + 35-50$ for a yearly expansion (265-300$), are way to much to play a game.  way to much

     

    btw this is not f2p. TERA is an example what f2p means

  • RyowulfRyowulf Greensburg, PAPosts: 668Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by superniceguy

    F2P only saved it temporarily, as the game still has the same short attention life span as it did from launch, althought the F2P restrictions may slow people down. In June 2012 it still had more than 1 million subscribers.

    2 million new accounts is not all that great considering, when 2 million actually bought it at lanch, and WOW has what 10 million subs? If SWTOR is like WOW where are the other 6 million who surely must be curious about the game? Simple fact is they can not be bothered as F2P has not improved the game any, F2P just enabled people to play the same game as at launch which lost 1.5 million subs by the time it went F2P, without paying.

    This.  Ftp if you can even call it that is only a delay not a reprive.  They are trying to milk every last cent out of the game before they sell/close it.  I would guess they haven't closed it all ready because of some sort of agreement with LA.  

    Even if they are somehow breaking even with ongoing running costs, there is still the hole of debt they put themselves into.

     

  • PhryPhry HampshirePosts: 6,296Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Sevenstar61

    I would love to see Mass Effect MMO. Or even Dragon Age MMO :)

    Sure it's very crowdy in SWTOR lately... F2P makes more people to try the game, despite all hate... based on what I read in General chat comments.. lots of popl try, like it and then sub... good thing.

    That James Ohlsen finally showed up it's a very good news. I genuinly like the guy.

    must admit, when the game first launched i was dubious, particularly over the whole companions business in the game, and how much people had to depend on them, but now, its actually not bad at all, and i wouldnt mind seeing a fantasy MMO using a similar mechanic, maybe as you mentioned, a Dragon Age MMO, as for the whole F2P thing in SW;TOR, i do agree that it does look like the F2P bit draws people in, and if they like it, they tend to end up staying and upgrading their accounts to subbed simply because you get so much more out of the game if you do, as a try before you buy kind of thing its pretty awesome, i wouldnt mind seeing other games use this method tbh, nothing worse than shelling out £30-£50 on a game and then finding out you've been jiffed with a real lemon of a game image

  • XthosXthos Columbus, OHPosts: 2,628Member

    One of the largest ehh....Kind of like saying humans breath when alive...one of could be 19 out of 19.  F2p cannot fix the problems with TOR, it would need its own NGE to do that.  Sorry if I do not believe much of what they say, when they repeatedly lied in the past.  Game is not designed for retention imo, and free subscriptions do not mean much, they had trouble not lying when they had people paying and counting them, let alone ones that aren't paying.

     

    For something that is not growing out of control, it's odd that they keep combining servers...IT will grow so much, that they need to have one server, and we will hear profit is through the roof still.

     

  • BadOrbBadOrb ManchesterPosts: 791Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Ryowulf
    Originally posted by superniceguy

    F2P only saved it temporarily, as the game still has the same short attention life span as it did from launch, althought the F2P restrictions may slow people down. In June 2012 it still had more than 1 million subscribers.

    2 million new accounts is not all that great considering, when 2 million actually bought it at lanch, and WOW has what 10 million subs? If SWTOR is like WOW where are the other 6 million who surely must be curious about the game? Simple fact is they can not be bothered as F2P has not improved the game any, F2P just enabled people to play the same game as at launch which lost 1.5 million subs by the time it went F2P, without paying.

    This.  Ftp if you can even call it that is only a delay not a reprive.  They are trying to milk every last cent out of the game before they sell/close it.  I would guess they haven't closed it all ready because of some sort of agreement with LA.  

    Even if they are somehow breaking even with ongoing running costs, there is still the hole of debt they put themselves into.

     

    They aren't milking it if they are making another expansion ? That's not milking it. Also they are now EA's top MMORPG developer. Have you any proof that the game hasn't already broken even ? I believe that it's making them a profit now. It's one of EA's top microtransaction games. We are still sailing :)

    Cheers,

    BadOrb.

    PSO 4 years , EQOA 4 months , PSU 7 years , SWTOR launch ongoing , PSO2 SEA launch ongoing , Destiny 360 launch ongoing.
    "SWG was not fun. Let it go buddy." quote from iiNoSkillzii 10/18/13
    The original propoganda pixie dust villain :[]

  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon

    Makeb is probably the reason for most of the subs, more than F2P is, as by having a sub gets you the expansion for $10 instead of $20, making sub be $5 in effect, ie more valuie for money.

    Subs will drop after Makeb, and further expansions will only happen if it continues the way it is.

  • DavisFlightDavisFlight Talahasee, FLPosts: 2,556Member

    Good game design would have done a better job at saving TOR.

    It's all PR BS anyway. SWTOR hasn't been honest about its success in the entire run.

  • Sevenstar61Sevenstar61 Centreville, VAPosts: 1,690Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by superniceguy

    Makeb is probably the reason for most of the subs, more than F2P is, as by having a sub gets you the expansion for $10 instead of $20, making sub be $5 in effect, ie more valuie for money.

    Subs will drop after Makeb, and further expansions will only happen if it continues the way it is.

    I hope they will learn that what will keep the subs up  is adding content, content, content.... on regular bases. It is normal for every MMO to drop in subs between content updates.

    image
    Sith Warrior - Story of Hate and Love http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxKrlwXt7Ao
    Imperial Agent - Rise of Cipher Nine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBBj3eJWBvU&feature=youtu.be
    Imperial Agent - Hunt for the Eagle Part 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQqjYYU128E

  • RyowulfRyowulf Greensburg, PAPosts: 668Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by BadOrb
    Originally posted by Ryowulf
    Originally posted by superniceguy

    F2P only saved it temporarily, as the game still has the same short attention life span as it did from launch, althought the F2P restrictions may slow people down. In June 2012 it still had more than 1 million subscribers.

    2 million new accounts is not all that great considering, when 2 million actually bought it at lanch, and WOW has what 10 million subs? If SWTOR is like WOW where are the other 6 million who surely must be curious about the game? Simple fact is they can not be bothered as F2P has not improved the game any, F2P just enabled people to play the same game as at launch which lost 1.5 million subs by the time it went F2P, without paying.

    This.  Ftp if you can even call it that is only a delay not a reprive.  They are trying to milk every last cent out of the game before they sell/close it.  I would guess they haven't closed it all ready because of some sort of agreement with LA.  

    Even if they are somehow breaking even with ongoing running costs, there is still the hole of debt they put themselves into.

     

    They aren't milking it if they are making another expansion ? That's not milking it. Also they are now EA's top MMORPG developer. Have you any proof that the game hasn't already broken even ? I believe that it's making them a profit now. It's one of EA's top microtransaction games. We are still sailing :)

    Cheers,

    BadOrb.

    I'll say it again. If Tor is doing sooo well and making money hand over fist, why are they nickel and diming their customer?  Why are they putting so many restrictions on their ftp players when they are spending money in the cash shop?

    Why do they feel the need to charge for content that they had intented to give away for free? 

    Either EA is lying or they are greedy with no respect for their base. Which is it?  If they are failing then I can understand trying to grab every penny.  But if they are doing well then there is no excuse.

  • cheyanecheyane Rome Posts: 3,002Member Uncommon
    I am happy for SWTOR and I play it in between my other games.

    image

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  • ignore_meignore_me Apple Valley, CAPosts: 1,987Member
    Originally posted by BadOrb

    I like the sound of BioWare will be EA's lead MMORPG department and we might even get a new SW one or another IP. Still it can take about 6 years to make one , hopefully they are working on one , well they are working on Ultima Online and so maybe that's one of them.

    It's great to read about the fact all the money spent wasn't on VO or cut scenes and dev's shouldn' be afraid of having them in their games. The amount of times I have read all that money just on VO on websites such as this , at least now we have the ( possible ) truth.

    More expansions coming our way , yay!

    Cheers,

    BadOrb.

    A single story from their own guy saying that not having a subscription saved the game, and you extrapolate that having 80% of your game being cutscenes is viable. That's really just dumb-assery.

    They won't get the Star Wars IP again. Bioware blew it big time from launch, and whatever success they may be having, it's a far cry of what was projected for a subscription game that was supposed to have a 15 year plan.

    You are an example of the endemic problem with the cheerleaders of SWTOR: baseless hope and the willingness to be a part of a wasted use of the IP.

    Survivor of the great MMORPG Famine of 2011

  • Sevenstar61Sevenstar61 Centreville, VAPosts: 1,690Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Ryowulf
     

    I'll say it again. If Tor is doing sooo well and making money hand over fist, why are they nickel and diming their customer?  Why are they putting so many restrictions on their ftp players when they are spending money in the cash shop?

    Why do they feel the need to charge for content that they had intented to give away for free? 

    Either EA is lying or they are greedy with no respect for their base. Which is it?  If they are failing then I can understand trying to grab every penny.  But if they are doing well then there is no excuse.

    Ohlen answered this in my opinion:) - F2P is designed to increase subs, not to let F2P to be permanent option because it's so good :)

    How did BioWare tackle F2P development? "We had to come up with a system that made subscribers the core of the business," Ohlen explained. "But we also had to have an option that brought in new players." According to Ohlen, SWTOR was designed to be a subscription-based game, so any F2P option needed to still effectively support the service the way a sub game would. The most successful compensation came in the form of Cartel Packs. In the style of trading card games, these packs would give players random items that they could use in game. And just as in any good TCG, the items in the Cartel Packs could be traded with other players -- this time on in-game auction house, the galactic trade network.

    And I agree Cartel Packs bring them money... not F2P unlocks, and it's mostly subs who buy them... I already have a Legend rep LOL

    image
    Sith Warrior - Story of Hate and Love http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxKrlwXt7Ao
    Imperial Agent - Rise of Cipher Nine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBBj3eJWBvU&feature=youtu.be
    Imperial Agent - Hunt for the Eagle Part 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQqjYYU128E

  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Sevenstar61
    Originally posted by superniceguy

    Makeb is probably the reason for most of the subs, more than F2P is, as by having a sub gets you the expansion for $10 instead of $20, making sub be $5 in effect, ie more valuie for money.

    Subs will drop after Makeb, and further expansions will only happen if it continues the way it is.

    I hope they will learn that what will keep the subs up  is adding content, content, content.... on regular bases. It is normal for every MMO to drop in subs between content updates.

    Content is not what they want, but money, and they will only get subs if they keep charging for the content, and doing these deals. STO has now released an expansion too, on top of Season 8 and 9 yet to come, and is all FREE and the expansion will be in within 2months from announcement and not 10 months SWTOR is not going to compete when other MMOs get freerer F2P options and most are now totally free but pay for DLC.  Subbers are not going to put up with having to keep buying content. Makeb should be free for subbers or at least have the option to buy it with CC

  • Sevenstar61Sevenstar61 Centreville, VAPosts: 1,690Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by superniceguy
    Originally posted by Sevenstar61
    Originally posted by superniceguy

    Makeb is probably the reason for most of the subs, more than F2P is, as by having a sub gets you the expansion for $10 instead of $20, making sub be $5 in effect, ie more valuie for money.

    Subs will drop after Makeb, and further expansions will only happen if it continues the way it is.

    I hope they will learn that what will keep the subs up  is adding content, content, content.... on regular bases. It is normal for every MMO to drop in subs between content updates.

    Content is not what they want, but money, and they will only get subs if they keep charging for the content, and doing these deals. STO has now released an expansion too, on top of Season 8 and 9 yet to come, and is all FREE and the expansion will be in within 2months from announcement and not 10 months SWTOR is not going to compete when other MMOs get freerer F2P options and most are now totally free but pay for DLC.  Subbers are not going to put up with having to keep buying content. Makeb should be free for subbers or at least have the option to buy it with CC

    Hmmm if STO is so good with content etc why I don't see ya playing it? It has a place #70 on X-fire... still better than Rift which is #126 today. Your sig.. tells all :)

    I am glad though that you are playing SWTOR:) it makes me happy :)

    image
    Sith Warrior - Story of Hate and Love http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxKrlwXt7Ao
    Imperial Agent - Rise of Cipher Nine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBBj3eJWBvU&feature=youtu.be
    Imperial Agent - Hunt for the Eagle Part 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQqjYYU128E

  • DaRoamerDaRoamer Toronto, ONPosts: 249Member
    Originally posted by Ryowulf
     

    I'll say it again. If Tor is doing sooo well and making money hand over fist, why are they nickel and diming their customer?  Why are they putting so many restrictions on their ftp players when they are spending money in the cash shop?

    Why do they feel the need to charge for content that they had intented to give away for free? 

    Either EA is lying or they are greedy with no respect for their base. Which is it?  If they are failing then I can understand trying to grab every penny.  But if they are doing well then there is no excuse.

    I don't feel like I'm being nickle and dimed at all.  Aside from Makeb I don't have to spend any money.  I get all my packs and cartel items on the GTN with credits or with the 700 free coins I get every month.  99% of the items on the Cartel market are bind on equip.

    The same is true of free players.  They're getting a crapload of content for zero.  None of the things that are restricted are required for you to enjoy the story content from 1-50.  Even still you can also buy all the unlocks on the GTN for credits even as a free player, that includes weekly unlocks for PVP and Flashpoints.  Right now on my server you can get weekly passes for around 150-180k.  You can get that in a couple of hours of daily quests.

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