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[Column] Elder Scrolls Online: F2P or P2P? Keeping Hush on the Business Model



  • TokenaruTokenaru Austin, TXPosts: 58Member
    I think the perfect payment model for this is zenimax pays me to play it.
  • RazeeksterRazeekster GlobPosts: 2,591Member Uncommon

    I'm sorry Michael, but this article isn't very well written in certain areas. It's very obvious from the get-go that you're biased against subscription games so this is an "opinionated" article right from the start and I've said this before and I'll say it again, I really wish you guys would label your opinion pieces instead of having them out like they're factual information. Your comment "Subscriptions, even in their heyday, were always a losing proposition" made me cringe just because there is no proof behind that statement whatsoever. Another way you could have tried to make this article as unbiased as possible was to mention the fact of how badly SW:TOR was doing because that's honestly the reason why they went to the F2P model. 


    You're a very good writer otherwise, it's just clear that you let your bias sort of overtake the article. Keep up the good work!


  • LeiloniLeiloni PhiladelphiaPosts: 1,019Member Rare

    I couldn't care less what payment model any game uses. If a game is good I'll play it, if it isn't I won't.


    And it's definitely a double edged sword because with a F2P game, I'm much more likely to give it a try even if I'm unsure if I'll like it because there's no cost for entry, however P2P games I usually end up spending less in the long run. Although with P2P games once I stop I'm less likely to start back up again because the need to pay $15 when I'm not even sure how long I'll be back for is a bit of a deterrent. I think a P2P game with a good free trial for both new and returning players would be a good way to go. Make it free up to level 20 for 7 days for new players and free for 7 days at any level for returning players. I'd be happy to pay for any game that gave me that flexibility.

  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAPosts: 21,816Member Epic
    Originally posted by Torvaldr

    I don't really buy into the "it started p2p" argument.  What does that have to do with the quality?  The production budget and the team make it quality.  You could probably make an argument that publishers were only willing to fund a AAA budget for the established revenue model due to comfort with what it can deliver.  That was shortsighted on their part because it hasn't panned out well for them.

    As I mentioned, I believe that was his argument.

    If you compare f2p games up to the point that p2p games started going f2p there is clearly a difference. p2p games were better.

    Obviously, now that publishers/developers have seen that they can make more money f2p, developers/publishers don't necessarily have issues with putting more money into a quality game.

  • NasaNasa DenmarkPosts: 616Member Uncommon

    There must be something wrong with me.

    I have enjoyed a lot of F2P MMO's without spending any mony. This should not be posible.

    Should I go visit a doctor?

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    TOR's problems had nothing to do with it's chosen payment model. It had to do with spending an INSANE amount of money to build a game that only a few people wanted to play for more then a couple of months.

    If a game is realistic and disciplined about it's budget and engaging enough that players actualy WANT to play it over the long haul then it's payment model is pretty much irrelevent. Until the industry execs and talking heads get that straight in thier heads, nothing will change.

    Contending that the payment model will make or break your game is the equivalent of saying that the flavor of the mints you leave on the pillow is what determines whether your hotel will be successful.

    I'm going to be brutaly honest. The reason why so many MMO's have been floundering of late is because Developers just haven't been making very many good games lately, certainly not ones that have held peoples attention over the long term. The Development executives have been about as bad as Congress with fisicaly responsible budgets and sound management practices. Add to that the big publishers have been shooting themselves in the foot by essentialy treating thier customers like dirt and then lying to them pretty much every time thier lips are moving..... and a blind man could see what has been happening.

    Make a good product. Be competent managing your production and budgets..... and treat your customers honestly and respectfully and you could pretty much throw a dart to chose your payment model.

    It's the fundementals the industry hasn't been succeeding on....not chasing after trends created by thier own marketing spin-meisters.


  • bazingabazinga BazingaPosts: 32Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by boxsnd
    Here is a list of P2P MMOs that released after 2004 and were successful: 1: -    Well said XD
  • c0existc0exist Round Rock, TXPosts: 196Member Uncommon
    Maybe I am in the minority here but I hope its P2P.  
  • purewitzpurewitz Casselberry, FLPosts: 489Member Uncommon
    I see ESO going down the same road as SWTOR, LOTRO, STO, DCUO, DDO, and others. A year or so with P2P and then a F2P switch or they might even go with GW2's B2P. There are only two games really holding on to P2P. EVE and WOW and I don't see them lasting too much longer without a F2P switch, but both Blizzard and CCP have other F2P and B2P projects out or coming soon. So I think EVE and WOW will just die P2P. Although I think F2P or B2P sequels for both games are coming in the future.

    When we get back from where we are going, we will return to where we were. I know people there!

  • DaranarDaranar Walkersville, MDPosts: 192Member Uncommon

    First, I have to say this completely looks and feels to me like a sub based game.  Second, your entire arguement is flawed by one statement, that there are many quality F2P games out there.   I guess modern MMO PLAYERS don't even know what a quality game is anymore.  There is nothing out like the original SWG, EQ, DAoC, etc... except perhaps EVE and that is a sub based game that is still thriving and making money.   F2P is a sure-fire way to make sure no one cares about your game after the next 'wave' of MMOs are released.   Sub gets deticated fans, IF you have a quality game, and keeps your game alive.   

    F2P to make a big splash, Sub to be a lasting game.

    If I want a world in which people can purchase success and power with cash, I'll play Real Life. Keep Virtual Worlds Virtual!

  • BMBenderBMBender Nowhere, NCPosts: 821Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Po_gg
    Originally posted by danwest58

    Because F2P games suck and get little development when they are F2P.  Look at DDO and LOTRO, it takes them forever to get expansions and fixes because they do not have the money to pay developers. 

    Lol, right... maybe you should hop over to the LotRO forum and tell your thoughts above in the "New expansion already?!" thread where they complaining that expansions are coming so fast that they don't have enough time to finish everything on T2 :)

    Make sure you stay accurate. Keep in mind that from the initial launch of the last ex-pac to "FINALLY" getting all the instance cluster and final x-pac content into game took 9 months.  They are not complaining that x-pacs are getting released to fast, they are complaining that x-pacs are being finallized to slowly with much of the content becoming irrelevant almost as soon as it gets introduced.  Learn to read.


    EDIT: as far as the payment model, it's irrelevant, if your game is good people will pay however they need to.  If it sucks donkey balls well.. GL with that

  • keithiankeithian Los Angeles, CAPosts: 3,097Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by volvoxaureus
    how about a subscription about 7 dollars/month ??

    I agree with you. Make the subscription feel small, less than a Netflix subscription, have a cash shop that doesn't influence the outcome of PVP or PVE but more cosmetic in nature, and it could still work if the game is good and pumps out enough content. I think $5/month is a good compromise :-).

    There Is Always Hope!

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member
    The real reason why F2P has had such draw lately is that there have been so many utterly underwhelming games released in recent years that gamers simply don't want to invest any money up front on something that has a 95 percent chance of being dissapointing. The hype can be off the charts, the (proffesional) critics can give it rave reviews but when you actualy get that bright shiny new Porche in your turns out to be a Yugo.
  • Squeak69Squeak69 Colorado Springs, COPosts: 957Member Uncommon

    if i where to guess its is going to start as a sub and go free to play withen 6 month once they relise almost no one will play P2P games anymore exept hard core fans.

    not that i am happy about this but this is probally the way it wil go i kinda hope im wrong but meh we will only know once the game comes out.

    F2P may be the way of the future, but ya know they dont make them like they used toimage
    Proper Grammer & spelling are extra, corrections will be LOL at.

  • ZedTheRockZedTheRock Florence, KYPosts: 172Member

    B2P or F2P please.


    Subscription gaming is a thing of the First Generation MMO's and have no place in an MMO set in 2013-2014.



  • Total_HuntTotal_Hunt ChichesterPosts: 65Member
    B2P please. There's no need to go full F2P with all the hype they'll have no trouble selling boxes.
  • faiyofaiyo |||COL|||1, TNPosts: 123Member
    Originally posted by Kyleran
    Could the answer be.... both?  Offer different tiers, including a sub model with access to most (if not all) content and then F2P models where you buy content packs, extra bag space, mounts etc? I think hybrid with multiple options is the way of the future.

    Of course that's not the answer, because it makes too much sense. Lol.

    But then people will cry about how those kinds of models are p2w because they've seen about two people previously use the term.

  • PrecusorPrecusor PalmaPosts: 3,588Member Uncommon
    If it doesnt suck ass then its going to be p2p.
  • TokenaruTokenaru Austin, TXPosts: 58Member
    I just dont get why you would want to be nickel and dimed instead of a subscription....its sick
  • LiddokunLiddokun San Francisco, CAPosts: 1,665Member Uncommon
    I really do hope it's the guild wars model. Buy to Play forever.
  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAPosts: 21,816Member Epic
    Originally posted by Tokenaru
    I just dont get why you would want to be nickel and dimed instead of a subscription....its sick

    You need to put it into persective.

    1, a great many people don't pay anything because a small minority are willing to make up the extra money since the payment limit is uncapped for them.

    2, some people are willing to, and can,  pay more money if they can get a benefit out of it. The least being something cosmetic. The worst being getting ahead.

    a, some people are very well off and paying a greater amount of money isn't really an issue to them. $1000 dollars to some is negligable and to others it's a great deal of money

    b, some people shouldn't be paying more but they are compelled to so so because of thier own issues. I know a guy who has payed several thousand dollars in one of these games. His reasoning is that it's his main hobby so why not. He makes an "ok" salary so it "could" be a plausible argument. But maybe it's not to the thinking of others.

    3, some people still only allow themselves the "$15 per month as that is what they budget for thier games. More or less depending on the month.


    In the end it just depends on which category you see yourself.

  • DestaiDestai Detroit, MIPosts: 574Member
    I'm hoping it's Buy to Play. If it's free to play, I won't touch it.
  • LordSneergLordSneerg Lorton, VAPosts: 119Member
    I hope there is a monthly fee associated with Teso. I don't want a cash shop at all. Please please please please stop the madness of cash shops and just charge a monthly fee. Please 
  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by ZedTheRock
    B2P or F2P please.   Subscription gaming is a thing of the First Generation MMO's and have no place in an MMO set in 2013-2014.  

    P2P games do have a place now, they just have to be freaking awesome! The only reason why P2P games do not have a place is when they are average / below average which has been the case for a few years now.

    P2P is the best option, as you just get to play a game, and play to get stuff. Playing the game to earn an item is more rewarding than just buying an item.

    SWTOR (the game being compared to in the article) was a better game when it was just P2P. Subbers actually got free gifts, and free content, now subbers have to pay for gifts, and more content on top of the sub

    F2P like SWTOR has no place at all in MMOs, its nickle and diming at its worst


  • IsaneIsane EnglandPosts: 2,630Member Uncommon

    As long as the option exists for me to pay a monthly sub and get everything for the sub then thats fine by me.

    As long as the option exists , that people not commited to the game can be excluded from my screen or party even better. If this is pay to win , or indirect F2P model this will sadly be yet another one for the bin.

    People will always pay for a decent game , sadly cheap internet and free game access is providing a pool of seriously limited people , thank god lots of decent tactical RPGs are starting to be remade so that some of us will at least have a few decent games to play that requires more than one brain cell.

    I love the elder scrolls franchise sadly , no more if we can't have a level playing field.

    Sorcery must persist, the future is the Citadel 

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