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I would think that Trion would want to encourage 'loyalty' and have as many paying Patrons as possible.
That said, looking at the 'free' loyalty items as you rank up in the 4 tiers of loyalty, the numbers seem to be contrary to engendering the 'loyalty' to continue paying.
The 4 tiers are at 90K loyalty, 180K, 600K ( I think) and 1.2 million. Considering that you earn 7K loyalty a month, you wont even make the 1st tier in a full year of Patron status. And on top of that, as you clear each tier, the counter resets so after hitting that 90K mark instead of another 90K to go until T2 its the full 180K.
Now I know you get a daily bonus but so far I've gotten 5 points per day. That 1800 for an entire year of daily bonuses isn't going to do much to get to that next tier....
I think all of this is to give the Patrons 'something' and yet nothing at the same time. Patrons get credits enough on a monthly basis to feel like they can buy things in the cash shop (and some of the pets, items etc are kind of nice) but if they want the 'free' rewards, they are going to pay HEAVILY.
As I understand it, it's a 2:1 ratio. If you buy 1 credit you get 2 loyalty points. The best bang for the buck is 18K credit for $100. Buy 18K and get 36K. approximately $250 to get to rank one 'free' items (or wait a year).
Seems a bit steep to me. Some folks on the forums were saying it's 4:1. You get 2 loyalty for buying the credits and 2 for spending them. Easier but still expensive. $125 to tier 1, $250 tier 2, and onwards.
All this to me seems to discourage 'subs' and encourage dribs and drabs buying in the cash shop. I know Trion makes more in the CS but wouldn't this hurt them in the long (or perhaps not so long) run when folks start doing the math?