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Ah. I get the whole F2P antipathy that's going around now.

13

Comments

  • RaphRaph MMO Designer San Diego, CAPosts: 139Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by lizardbones


    The people I work with are spending a lot of money on this game. At least it looks like a lot of money to me. If the average person who's spending money on this game is spending upwards of a $100 a month

    what incentive does the developer have to create game play for people like me, who are never going to spend that kind of money?

    What if this is not only an instance of something, but a trend?

    The average dollar amount spent per game is going to be fairly high,

     

    I quotes a set of stuff here just to answer those points from the perspective of someone in the industry.

    1) $100 a month is not that high. Many many MMO subscribers racked up that much. (Remember, the average accountholder actually held two and a half accounts during the 90s-2000's. I don't know the figure today). An MMO is a hobby. People with the income for it will gladly spend thousands a MONTH on a hobby.

    This doesn't erase your core point, of course. I just wanted to point out that the scale goes much much higher than players tend to think.

    2) The developer's incentive to create gameplay for you is actually large. They want as many people as possible to get into the game and get hooked enough to want to pay. So they want you to enjoy it enough (or be compelled/coerced enough) to stick with it long enough to make it a hobby. Another way to think of F2P is "we have to re-persuade the customer to buy every time they play." That means a compelling offering.

    That said, the most reliable ways of doing that have had more to do with coercion than compelling gameplay, alas. There has also been little sense of the value of building long-lasting happy audiences. A great positive example is Angry Birds -- the basic gameplay is solid though not complex, and it's fun for a huge amount of people. They have become a powerful brand because all the parts are working together there. Coercive play doesn't tend to build loyal brands and customers.

    3) Yes, of course it is a trend. More, it is a trend that has already won. The first thing to realize is that for better or worse, mobile gaming is now the template for all gaming business initiatives. Coming generations of devices take more cues from mobile than from PC or traditional consoles, in many ways. Next gen consoles are TV set top boxes. Next gen PC gaming (Steambox) is more a console. And next gen gaming on mobile devices will offer controllers (see Apple's MFi program controllers).

    In the mobile market, for-pay games today ONLY work for niche titles or ones with massive marketing budgets. All other titles, and BY FAR the bulk of the revenue, comes from F2P. So all the business incentives are aligned towards that.

    The F2P model was born out of MMOs for better or worse (in fact, I trace it to the UO rares market). So this is a case of sowing the wind and reaping the whirlwind.

    4) As already mentioned, the average dollar amount was always higher. But there are some silver linings. A LOT more people are able to sample games, and enjoy them, in an F2P market. The price sensitivity threshold falls dramatically. As long as business practices can be held to an ethical standard, the news is not at all bad. After all, one way to look at it is that in the pay-up-front model, you ponied up $60 and didn't know whether the game would suck.

    In the F2P model, the high rollers end up subsidizing the play of all the free players. This means that the average revenue per head can actually be dramatically lower than it was in the subscription or boxed game days. This is likely the more likely issue to arise from these circumstances, because it incentivizes that new content only be catered to payers. This, however, is not all that different from new content being catered to the max level players.

    I just wanted you to have a better picture of the dynamics here. :)

  • RaphRaph MMO Designer San Diego, CAPosts: 139Member Uncommon

    Oh, and there's a TON of sources out there for ARPU, ARPPU, % paying, etc. Typical figures cited are 1-5% of players active in trailing 30 days pay. The ARPPU (avg revenue per paying user) generally has a floor based on what price the publisher sets (e.g., if the cheapest thing you can buy is a pack of coins for $5, well, then the minimum is $5). The ARPU (which is the revenue divided by ALL the active users) varies by type of game and breadth of market, going from $1 up to well into the double digits.

    A highly simplified set of examples:

    Hypothetical sub game:

    • Actual size of audience who WANTED to play: 1m users.
    • Size of audience who then did (met price sensitivity threshold): 50k.
    • Paying audience: 50k users.
    • ARPPU: $15-$45 (multiple account holders push this up)
    • ARPU: $17? Somewhere in there.

    Hypothetical f2p game:

    • Size of audience who wanted to play: 1m users.
    • Size who did: 1m.
    • Paying audience: 50k.
    • ARPPU: $5 to $5000
    • ARPU: very much depends on how many $5000 players vs $5 players you have.

     

     

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,643Member Uncommon
    Great info, Raph. Thank you very much for posting this stuff! image

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Raph
    Oh, and there's a TON of sources out there for ARPU, ARPPU, % paying, etc. Typical figures cited are 1-5% of players active in trailing 30 days pay. The ARPPU (avg revenue per paying user) generally has a floor based on what price the publisher sets (e.g., if the cheapest thing you can buy is a pack of coins for $5, well, then the minimum is $5). The ARPU (which is the revenue divided by ALL the active users) varies by type of game and breadth of market, going from $1 up to well into the double digits.A highly simplified set of examples:Hypothetical sub game: Actual size of audience who WANTED to play: 1m users. Size of audience who then did (met price sensitivity threshold): 50k. Paying audience: 50k users. ARPPU: $15-$45 (multiple account holders push this up) ARPU: $17? Somewhere in there.Hypothetical f2p game: Size of audience who wanted to play: 1m users. Size who did: 1m. Paying audience: 50k. ARPPU: $5 to $5000 ARPU: very much depends on how many $5000 players vs $5 players you have.  

    Wow. If you are who you say you are (this is the internet after all), there are so many arguments you could settle around here. :-)

    In any event, thanks for the info and the insight. It's always cool when someone from the industry posts stuff. It's also a nice reminder that behind the games are actual people, not hate filled trolls who want nothing more than to take money from our cold, dead fingers.

    When you say a ton of sources, are you talking about a ton of sources for people like players or people like designers and developers. I feel certain that a few people here have searched for stuff like that, and other than Funcom, I haven't really seen a lot of information that was that specific.

    Gah! So many questions!

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • RaphRaph MMO Designer San Diego, CAPosts: 139Member Uncommon

    I think you may have a chance to ask me lots of questions soon. :) But I have been on here since 2006. So yeah, it is the real me. You can check my post history!

    The sources are almost all for developers, but most of them are publicly posted. Just search around stuff like the GDC Vault free presentations, or Casual Connect (all the presentations are posted for free).

  • ZorgoZorgo Deepintheheartof, TXPosts: 2,226Member
    Originally posted by lizardbones

     


    Originally posted by Raph
    Oh, and there's a TON of sources out there for ARPU, ARPPU, % paying, etc. Typical figures cited are 1-5% of players active in trailing 30 days pay. The ARPPU (avg revenue per paying user) generally has a floor based on what price the publisher sets (e.g., if the cheapest thing you can buy is a pack of coins for $5, well, then the minimum is $5). The ARPU (which is the revenue divided by ALL the active users) varies by type of game and breadth of market, going from $1 up to well into the double digits.

     

    A highly simplified set of examples:

    Hypothetical sub game:

    • Actual size of audience who WANTED to play: 1m users.
    • Size of audience who then did (met price sensitivity threshold): 50k.
    • Paying audience: 50k users.
    • ARPPU: $15-$45 (multiple account holders push this up)
    • ARPU: $17? Somewhere in there.Hypothetical f2p game: Size of audience who wanted to play: 1m users. Size who did: 1m. Paying audience: 50k. ARPPU: $5 to $5000 ARPU: very much depends on how many $5000 players vs $5 players you have.
     

     

     



    Wow. If you are who you say you are (this is the internet after all), there are so many arguments you could settle around here. :-)

    In any event, thanks for the info and the insight. It's always cool when someone from the industry posts stuff. It's also a nice reminder that behind the games are actual people, not hate filled trolls who want nothing more than to take money from our cold, dead fingers.

    When you say a ton of sources, are you talking about a ton of sources for people like players or people like designers and developers. I feel certain that a few people here have searched for stuff like that, and other than Funcom, I haven't really seen a lot of information that was that specific.

    Gah! So many questions!

     

    He is. You don't get the "MMO Designer" tag by your name without a credential check.

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Holophonist
    I don't know how far this discussion has strayed from the OP but I feel like OP is right in saying that what he experienced is a condensed version of what we know about F2P.

     

    I know the kind of games you're talking about and I agree. But it does feel like the F2P MMORPGs are looking for people to play more long term and *probably* spend less on average per month? As in, those little mobile games (or similar browser based games) are probably super addictive at first to the point where you'll drop a lot of money, but I bet you get sick of them much more quickly, learn your lesson and don't ever play another one again. Whereas with MMORPGs you may spend less and feel like it was less of a "mistake" when you're done.



    My post was pretty non-specific, and basically described a thought resulting from playing one game. It wouldn't be surprising if the topic has wandered. I'm always a little surprised and a pleased when a thread stays civil and as on topic as some of the ones I start get to do. It's usually right around the time that I comment on it that things go south though. Hmmm.

    It really wasn't about F2P nearly as much as it was about how people feel about F2P. I think people play a few F2P MMORPGs and it's ok, cool even, but then they play one F2P game like the mobile games I've played, and it's such a departure from what they find acceptable, that the only response available is to grab a pitchfork. I think that's just how people respond to things like that. We have to. We can't keep checking out the red berries that made us puke our guts out for days because it would eventually kill us, so we have cautious reactions to the good F2P games in case they turn on us, and extreme reactions to the ones that make us "sick".

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Raph
    I think you may have a chance to ask me lots of questions soon. :) But I have been on here since 2006. So yeah, it is the real me. You can check my post history!The sources are almost all for developers, but most of them are publicly posted. Just search around stuff like the GDC Vault free presentations, or Casual Connect (all the presentations are posted for free).

    Cool. Thank you very much, sir.

    Even cooler that we might get to pester an industry vet. :-)

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • AethaerynAethaeryn Kitchener, ONPosts: 1,971Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by GeezerGamer
    Originally posted by lizardbones

     


    Originally posted by Voqar
    I kind of doubt your average player will drop $100/mo on any game.  Fools and their money are easily parted for sure, but the average player doesn't have the luxury to be that foolish with money.

     

     

    Obviously there ARE plenty of fools in the MMORPG world to keep crappy F2P MMORPGs afloat.  So you have to hope that designers would prefer to make good, quality games, instead of steaming piles of F2P crap.  ALL, and I mean ALL, F2P MMORPGs are crap.  F2P isn't an entirely horrible business model for SOME gaming genres, but it IS crap for MMORPGs, because the only way F2P can sustain an MMORPG is thru pay to win.  If you can buy even one piece of content that should be earned or anything like that, you've corrupted your game and the thing about MMORPGs is that moreso than in any other genre, the entire game is about earning stuff and making progress.  Even selling vanity clothing is lame in MMORPGs because it's something that SHOULD be obtained thru playing, not paying.

     



    One person who spends $100 a month in a game is worth 6.6 regular subscribers. So if a game can get $100 a month, and has four times fewer people paying money, they would still be ahead of the curve.

    Now, I don't know if this is a real thing or not. I think things are more complicated than my experience with one F2P mobile game, otherwise we wouldn't have two new major league games coming out that are going to charge a subscription. I'm just talking about how people feel about the F2P financial model in general and why that fear or dislike might exist. There has to be an "end game" to the F2P movement, and if that "end game" is something bad, then what is it? The cost rising to the point that most MMORPG players aren't wanted or needed is something bad for all those people.

     

    But would they be? That figure only looks at one month. What about next month? Or every month thereafter? How many months in a row does someone spend $100.00? How many months before they walk away forever? I once calculated how much money I had spent on WoW over the years. It was up there.

    Yeah but they simply rehash the same game with a different skin a few months later.  It works well enough.  Go to google play and look at the top grossing games.  Some of them have been up there for well over a year.  Some are reskins.

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  • ClassicstarClassicstar rotjeknorPosts: 2,690Member


    Originally posted by lizardbones
    Some people at work are playing Clash of Clans so I'm trying it out on my phone. Yes, it is a mobile game, and not an MMORPG, but it is a F2P game, and it condenses the F2P experience that a lot of people seem to fear down into a 10 minute example.

    In playing this game, I've been conserving the in game unit of exchange, called gems, or crystals. Little green things. The reason why is that I can see the point where I'm going to either have to check in with the game every ten minutes to collect resources, but really do nothing else, or spend money on those gems to buy resources, otherwise I won't be able to do anything. Now, I can take this game or leave it. There's not a ton of game play to be had. To me, it mostly seems like a system designed to siphon money out of humans by giving them numbers.

    The people I work with are spending a lot of money on this game. At least it looks like a lot of money to me. If the average person who's spending money on this game is spending upwards of a $100 a month, what incentive does the developer have to create game play for people like me, who are never going to spend that kind of money?

    What if this is not only an instance of something, but a trend? The average dollar amount spent per game is going to be fairly high, and there will be little incentive to create game play for people who won't spend that much money, effectively pushing them out of that segment of the gaming market. A segment that includes MMORPGs.

    That's the fear. That the cost for playing MMORPGs through F2P will rise to the point that people who enjoy MMORPGs will no longer play them because they are too expensive.

    Its maybe hype now but it will solved its selfe in near future when people realise they lost alot of money on realy stupid games and there kids have to go work young becouse pappa did have the money to send them to school:D

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  • HolophonistHolophonist Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 2,086Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Raph

    I think you may have a chance to ask me lots of questions soon. :) But I have been on here since 2006. So yeah, it is the real me. You can check my post history!

    The sources are almost all for developers, but most of them are publicly posted. Just search around stuff like the GDC Vault free presentations, or Casual Connect (all the presentations are posted for free).

    That GDC Post Mortem conference is one of my favorite things on the internet. I've loved UO (private servers now) for over half of my life and I had no idea it existed. It was an awesome experience to be given a glimpse into what was going through your minds at the time. So many amazing stories.

  • RaphRaph MMO Designer San Diego, CAPosts: 139Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Holophonist

    That GDC Post Mortem conference is one of my favorite things on the internet. I've loved UO (private servers now) for over half of my life and I had no idea it existed. It was an awesome experience to be given a glimpse into what was going through your minds at the time. So many amazing stories.

    I meant stuff on ARPU and whatnot, but glad you liked it.

    For those who have not seen the UO postmortem, it's here: http://www.gdcvault.com/play/1016629/Classic-Game-Postmortem-Ultima

  • azzamasinazzamasin Butler, OHPosts: 3,066Member Uncommon
    That's why good F2P MMO's don't use a Pay 2 Win or Gating content.  The 2 F2P MMO's I enjoy right now, GW2 and Neverwinter are both perfectly viable 100% free.  Real Cash only offers a minor stat increase or a model for fans to purchase cosmetic or luxury items.

    Sandbox means open world, non-linear gaming PERIOD!

    Subscription Gaming, especially MMO gaming is a Cash grab bigger then the most P2W cash shop!

    Bring Back Exploration and lengthy progression times. RPG's have always been about the Journey not the destination!!!

    image

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,643Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by lizardbones

     


    Originally posted by Raph
    Oh, and there's a TON of sources out there for ARPU, ARPPU, % paying, etc. Typical figures cited are 1-5% of players active in trailing 30 days pay. The ARPPU (avg revenue per paying user) generally has a floor based on what price the publisher sets (e.g., if the cheapest thing you can buy is a pack of coins for $5, well, then the minimum is $5). The ARPU (which is the revenue divided by ALL the active users) varies by type of game and breadth of market, going from $1 up to well into the double digits.

     

    A highly simplified set of examples:

    Hypothetical sub game:

    • Actual size of audience who WANTED to play: 1m users.
    • Size of audience who then did (met price sensitivity threshold): 50k.
    • Paying audience: 50k users.
    • ARPPU: $15-$45 (multiple account holders push this up)
    • ARPU: $17? Somewhere in there.Hypothetical f2p game: Size of audience who wanted to play: 1m users. Size who did: 1m. Paying audience: 50k. ARPPU: $5 to $5000 ARPU: very much depends on how many $5000 players vs $5 players you have.


    Wow. If you are who you say you are (this is the internet after all), there are so many arguments you could settle around here. :-)

    In any event, thanks for the info and the insight. It's always cool when someone from the industry posts stuff. It's also a nice reminder that behind the games are actual people, not hate filled trolls who want nothing more than to take money from our cold, dead fingers.

    When you say a ton of sources, are you talking about a ton of sources for people like players or people like designers and developers. I feel certain that a few people here have searched for stuff like that, and other than Funcom, I haven't really seen a lot of information that was that specific.

    Gah! So many questions!

     

    I'd say you can start with the ton of sources that narius, Venge, myself and others have been posting in most of these threads.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • HolophonistHolophonist Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 2,086Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Raph
    Originally posted by Holophonist

    That GDC Post Mortem conference is one of my favorite things on the internet. I've loved UO (private servers now) for over half of my life and I had no idea it existed. It was an awesome experience to be given a glimpse into what was going through your minds at the time. So many amazing stories.

    I meant stuff on ARPU and whatnot, but glad you liked it.

    For those who have not seen the UO postmortem, it's here: http://www.gdcvault.com/play/1016629/Classic-Game-Postmortem-Ultima

    I know... the fanboy in me took over though.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,643Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Mattatron

    Hmm, well, I really think you're missing something in the psychological urge for instant gratification and "being of the haves instead of have-nots".

    Sure. If it's your "playstyle" to get a fraction of accomplishment per online hour compared to others, and can be satisfied with that, I guess you might be right. Personally, I wouldn't call that "playstyle" but rather "resigning to a lowered standard".

    That point of comparison is absent in most mobile games, even the multiplayer ones. You are not seeing what others have or where others can get to. I mean, sure there are some that are always worried that someone else might have more of something than them, but for most people playing these predominantly-PvE multiplayer mobile games that isn't really a concern.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • LonzoLonzo GoettingenPosts: 235Member Uncommon
    F2P games always feel like you are not totally into the game.... 

    image
  • VorthanionVorthanion Laguna Vista, TXPosts: 2,117Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Voqar

    I kind of doubt your average player will drop $100/mo on any game.  Fools and their money are easily parted for sure, but the average player doesn't have the luxury to be that foolish with money.

     

    Obviously there ARE plenty of fools in the MMORPG world to keep crappy F2P MMORPGs afloat.  So you have to hope that designers would prefer to make good, quality games, instead of steaming piles of F2P crap.  ALL, and I mean ALL, F2P MMORPGs are crap.  F2P isn't an entirely horrible business model for SOME gaming genres, but it IS crap for MMORPGs, because the only way F2P can sustain an MMORPG is thru pay to win.  If you can buy even one piece of content that should be earned or anything like that, you've corrupted your game and the thing about MMORPGs is that moreso than in any other genre, the entire game is about earning stuff and making progress.  Even selling vanity clothing is lame in MMORPGs because it's something that SHOULD be obtained thru playing, not paying.

     

    If you think for one moment that these developers haven't done their psychology 101 homework and designed mechanisms that tweak a person's addictive behavior, then you are woefully mistaken.  Businesses have embraced science when it comes to consumerism.  Being a fool can be part of the equation, but even smart people can be defenseless against their own compulsions and these developers know exactly which buttons to push and when.

    image
  • Vermillion_RaventhalVermillion_Raventhal Oxon Hill, MDPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon

    My biggest issue with F2P model is that in a lot of ways it compromises traditional game play.   Meaning, I feel the gameplay artificially compels me to spend money or the lack of gameplay does.  

     

    Lets take Candy Crush for instance.  Its a fun time killer but I'm not foolish enough to believe the game play isn't rigged for random fustration and failure to the point you're tempted to buy more lives and turns.  I had level where you must drop the fruit to the bottom.  One attempt I had a very high score but 1 of the 4 fruit never appeared.  This seems like my skill wasn't good enough to overcome the random odds place to make me buy a new life or turns.  There is a level of skill but there is a lot of random factors about candy placement and dropping.  

     

    In MMORPG's F2P, ignoring that many of the MMORPG's are failed subscription games for a reason, the gameplay itself is compromised to me.  You have items that should be obtained through gameplay sold for real money without being obtainable in game.  I don't care if someone bought a sword off Ebay but I do care when nobody else can get this item without paying real money for it.  Advertisements in game also take away from the game.  I really hate getting a quest that leads you to a cash shop in the world.   If your only means of obtaining an item in game are through inhuman grinds the game is compromised to me.  You known when it takes a 1000 hours killing a creature to raise enough money to buy an item that cost 10 dollars.   Pay to win is the worst thing that's happened to gaming.  Competitive edges or just wholesale unbeatable advantages sold for cash only disgust my gamemanship principles.   

     

  • TenebraeAeternaTenebraeAeterna Florence, SCPosts: 34Member
    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    My biggest issue with F2P model is that in a lot of ways it compromises traditional game play.   Meaning, I feel the gameplay artificially compels me to spend money or the lack of gameplay does.  

     

    Lets take Candy Crush for instance.  Its a fun time killer but I'm not foolish enough to believe the game play isn't rigged for random fustration and failure to the point you're tempted to buy more lives and turns.  I had level where you must drop the fruit to the bottom.  One attempt I had a very high score but 1 of the 4 fruit never appeared.  This seems like my skill wasn't good enough to overcome the random odds place to make me buy a new life or turns.  There is a level of skill but there is a lot of random factors about candy placement and dropping.  

     

    In MMORPG's F2P, ignoring that many of the MMORPG's are failed subscription games for a reason, the gameplay itself is compromised to me.  You have items that should be obtained through gameplay sold for real money without being obtainable in game.  I don't care if someone bought a sword off Ebay but I do care when nobody else can get this item without paying real money for it.  Advertisements in game also take away from the game.  I really hate getting a quest that leads you to a cash shop in the world.   If your only means of obtaining an item in game are through inhuman grinds the game is compromised to me.  You known when it takes a 1000 hours killing a creature to raise enough money to buy an item that cost 10 dollars.   Pay to win is the worst thing that's happened to gaming.  Competitive edges or just wholesale unbeatable advantages sold for cash only disgust my gamemanship principles.   

     

    This is exactly what I mean when I tell people that they are misunderstanding the difference between free to play and pay to win. Every flash based game you play is a pay to win game, not a free to play. They are designed to fish whales and then terminate after a designated period of time before the developers make another to start the process anew.

    A true free to play game doesn't sell anything that non-paying players can't obtain themselves. Instead, these games sell the same things that free based players can obtain themselves through time, or vanity items that hold no sway over the game itself. Take Planetside 2, for example, which sells absolutely nothing that you can't get in game except vanity items such as cool looking helmets or cammo. Everything else are weapons that you can earn in game simply through time.

    A true free to play model sells:


    - Instant Gratification (Like instantly unlocking weapons in Planetside 2)
    - Vanity items (No effect on gameplay.)
    - EXP boosts (Again, instant gratification.)

    Basically, a true free to play makes things progress faster for a price while allowing non-paying members to obtain the same game oriented content at the cost of spending more time. This lets people who work, and can afford to pay, excel as fast as someone who is unemployed by purchasing things like boosts or unlocking weapons instantly for some cash.

    When a game starts selling something that effects gameplay that you can't obtain in the game as a free playing individual, that's when it becomes a pay to win model...which normally ends in the destruction of a game. Hence why all your flash based games have a short lifespan.

    People need to understand this difference, because too many are confusing the two game models which are fundamentally different. A free to play game can fall apart and become a pay to win, it's the last resort of a failed free to play model...but a pay to win model is NOT free to play. It's designed to leave free based players at an extreme disadvantage to encourage paying.

    A true free to play game encourages players to pay for instant gratification, vanity items, and other odds and ends that don't cripple the free based community because a true free to play game WANTS to have a LONG lifespan and needs the free based player community to keep the server population up.

    Paying players are important to fund the game progression but free based players are important in keeping the population up and those paying players entertained through friendship or competition. So, both have to be catered to in a true free to play game...or you make a short lived pay to win game that's designed for quick cash and destruction.

    I've a heart of pure black jade, beating forth the ebon ink of shattered dreams. So spread those thighs my darlings, and let me hear those lustful screams... For twisting coils and silken strands, my venom coursing through your veins. It's my bliss you seek, to ease those troubled pains...

  • TenebraeAeternaTenebraeAeterna Florence, SCPosts: 34Member
    To add onto my previous rant, these two models are often lumped together because of how many free to play models fell apart and became a pay to win before self destruction.

    The free to play model is new ground when it comes to a long term sustainable game, it was previously used as a bait and switch in flash based games. Now game companies are looking towards the idea for long term sustainability and it'll be a bit until it's perfected.

    I hear Guildwars 2 is doing good and Planetside 2 has an excellent model right now. With their Player Studio concept, I think Planetside 2 has nailed sustainability in a F2P model...and it's not the only way to do it. Someone else suggested two games that are letting paying players exchange game time for in game currency and items. This lets free players with more time on their hands work, in game, to give items to people who don't have much time to play but money to burn.

    I've a heart of pure black jade, beating forth the ebon ink of shattered dreams. So spread those thighs my darlings, and let me hear those lustful screams... For twisting coils and silken strands, my venom coursing through your veins. It's my bliss you seek, to ease those troubled pains...

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,734Member Uncommon
    Spending money for games on a phone...How far have we fallen?
  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,643Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Theocritus
    Spending money for games on a phone...How far have we fallen?

    Are they really just phones now, though? For many  - I'm looking at you, Millenials - it's their phone, radio, camera, video recorder, appt calendar, game center, text messenger, and more. Seems that Fruit Ninja is just as logical a purchase as an office application suite.

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • RobokappRobokapp Dublin, OHPosts: 5,205Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Loktofeit
    Originally posted by Theocritus
    Spending money for games on a phone...How far have we fallen?

    Are they really just phones now, though? For many  - I'm looking at you, Millenials - it's their phone, radio, camera, video recorder, appt calendar, game center, text messenger, and more. Seems that Fruit Ninja is just as logical a purchase as an office application suite.

    it's been my alarm clock since 2006.

    image

  • crack_foxcrack_fox WellingtonPosts: 402Member
    Originally posted by Raph

    That said, the most reliable ways of doing that have had more to do with coercion than compelling gameplay, alas ... Coercive play doesn't tend to build loyal brands and customers.

    Barcelona is (in)famous for its pickpockets. I would like to visit Barcelona. It is undoubtedly a beautiful and fascinating city. However, I would be reluctant to accept a free trip to Barcelona if I knew that my flight and accommodation was being paid for by a syndicate of pickpocketing gangs. This is what it feels like to join a F2P-by-design MMO. No matter how compelling the gameplay, I cannot 'freely' enjoy it even if I can play it for free. I am too wary of those coercive elements, lurking at every turn, to the extent that recognising and evading them becomes the game.

     

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