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The Simple Reason a 15$ Subscription Doesn't Work Anymore

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  • kjempffkjempff Member RarePosts: 1,629
    edited December 2016
    Torval said:
    kjempff said:
    Take those number and add inflation etc 25$ is probably a good guess. I know I would pay a sub of 25$ or more if a mmorpg made today could match everquest anno 2002. I have ran a 6box @ 15$ sub before and paid without a second thought - If you put it in price per hour of entertainment it is still very cheap indeed.
    The problem is you're looking at this in a vacuum. It seems like a good deal to you because you want it to be a good deal, but compared to other online digital entertainment $25 monthly is top end Premium for a single service.

    The commitment to another monthly payment is a huge negative for most people. Yet another bill and what do you get out of it, just access to the service? There are still dlc/box fees and extras.
    For me a sub of whatever is fair but I understand for others it may not be the best deal. I play many hours a month (still) and also the value of a the game experience (entertainment value) multiplies for me when I am on even terms (which you can never be with any f2p cash shop model) - not to mention the entire game design is deeply affected by the monetization model.

    I know subs are not a great business model anymore, but there are options (and untried options) that does not mess with the game design and player experience (feeling of accomplishment, even terms, inspiration). 
    Pay per hour is still untried, paid content additions (micro transactions) are fair to me because it does not mess with the game itself, even currency to play time models are ok as long as the currency can not be used for other ingame stuff. There are ways to avoid the problems f2p cash shop applies to a mmorpg, that are not subscription based... I say with conviction and hope :D
  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 34,004
    A million customers (subs) was almost (not totally) unheard of in old games and today is still extremely rare.

    If a developer is aiming for a million subs, great. If their budget for the game is contingent on a million subs, they are fools. 

    For a million subs they will need all the bells and whistles, meaning it will cost 100+ million and then they will absolutely need that much. Not much leeway there.
    What "old" games had a million subs at one time? 


    Lineage 1
    Oh yeah I forgot about linage...but that number is a little misleading due to the ban they had on specifically Japan exports in Korea where they had most of their subs. 
    That is the first time I've ever heard that story so I looked it up, very interesting.

    "See normal people, I'm not one of them" | G-Easy & Big Sean

    "I need to finish" - Christian Wolff: The Accountant

    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing POE at the moment.

    Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

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  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Member RarePosts: 6,543
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.
    Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it is bad.
  • kjempffkjempff Member RarePosts: 1,629
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.
    Interesting, which game(s) had pay per hour and when ?
  • waynejr2waynejr2 Member EpicPosts: 7,768
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.

    And we paid it.  Subscription service was the compromise for those who complained about the cost.  How much would dinner and a movie cost someone?
    http://www.youhaventlived.com/qblog/2010/QBlog190810A.html  

    Epic Music:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAigCvelkhQ&list=PLo9FRw1AkDuQLEz7Gvvaz3ideB2NpFtT1

    https://archive.org/details/softwarelibrary_msdos?&sort=-downloads&page=1

    Kyleran:  "Now there's the real trick, learning to accept and enjoy a game for what it offers rather than pass on what might be a great playing experience because it lacks a few features you prefer."

    John Henry Newman: "A man would do nothing if he waited until he could do it so well that no one could find fault."

    FreddyNoNose:  "A good game needs no defense; a bad game has no defense." "Easily digested content is just as easily forgotten."

    LacedOpium: "So the question that begs to be asked is, if you are not interested in the game mechanics that define the MMORPG genre, then why are you playing an MMORPG?"




  • WarlyxWarlyx Member RarePosts: 2,882
    now we have more options , i remember playing 1 and just 1 mmorpg for years to no end....and i remember never getting bored (or little) ...hell i remmeber maining 1 class for 3 years and maybe leveling another 1...just a bit ...u had so many things to do... and i 16-18 y.o with plenty of time to play.

    Nowadays...u have 1000 mmorpgs 90% are crap , and i get bored fast , plus i suffer alt-coholism....and cant find to main anything...ugh...

    Money? meh , now i have plenty , but outside some gems in gw2 (to buy a char slot) some cash shop currency in MH to buy my favorite heroe....little to no money spent....outside subs....

    if the game is worth i dont mind tossing some $ ...but still to find a game worth that...hell i even stopped playing FFXIV (that i never stop since 2.0 until 2 months ago ~) was worth it? hell yeah , but got tired of it , raiding wasnt fun , had to farm a lot on consumables , and was getting bored because if u are a raider there everything that isnt raid isnt worth , not even for alts...

    tried wow legion , meh raided a bit , and while not bored , the community sucked....badly...so byebye
  • gervaise1gervaise1 Member EpicPosts: 6,320
    kjempff said:
    . There are ways to avoid the problems f2p cash shop applies to a mmorpg, that are not subscription based... I say with conviction and hope :D
    And ways to get around subscription models as well - multiple accounts - especially in any game with pvp, paying people in some way for power levelling.

    Bottomline: whatever the payment model people - if they want - will find a way of getting what they want.
  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    edited December 2016
    kjempff said:
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.
    Interesting, which game(s) had pay per hour and when ?
    Pay per hour is actually still a popular model in Asia. I believe most Asian MMOs use a pay per hour model. Fairly sure ArcheAge and BDO work that way over there.
  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Member RarePosts: 6,543
    edited December 2016
    No idea. I just keep hearing about the huge expenses people had with it. It was replaced by the monthly fee. 

    So at least pre eq
    Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it is bad.
  • goboygogoboygo Member RarePosts: 2,066
    Your logic is completely flawed but I'm too lazy to type all the reasons why.
  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    goboygo said:
    Your logic is completely flawed but I'm too lazy to type all the reasons why.
    Well thanks for your post anyway. Super insightful, totally not a waste of space.
  • waynejr2waynejr2 Member EpicPosts: 7,768
    kjempff said:
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.
    Interesting, which game(s) had pay per hour and when ?
    AOL NeverwInter Nights.  $6.00 hour.  1991
    The Sierra Network (aka Sierra On-Line):  The Shadow of Yserbius (1991) game had a similar rate but offered at some point full server for $130.00 per month. IIRC.
    http://www.youhaventlived.com/qblog/2010/QBlog190810A.html  

    Epic Music:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAigCvelkhQ&list=PLo9FRw1AkDuQLEz7Gvvaz3ideB2NpFtT1

    https://archive.org/details/softwarelibrary_msdos?&sort=-downloads&page=1

    Kyleran:  "Now there's the real trick, learning to accept and enjoy a game for what it offers rather than pass on what might be a great playing experience because it lacks a few features you prefer."

    John Henry Newman: "A man would do nothing if he waited until he could do it so well that no one could find fault."

    FreddyNoNose:  "A good game needs no defense; a bad game has no defense." "Easily digested content is just as easily forgotten."

    LacedOpium: "So the question that begs to be asked is, if you are not interested in the game mechanics that define the MMORPG genre, then why are you playing an MMORPG?"




  • botrytisbotrytis Member RarePosts: 2,929
    Eldurian said:
    kjempff said:
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.
    Interesting, which game(s) had pay per hour and when ?
    Pay per hour is actually still a popular model in Asia. I believe most Asian MMOs use a pay per hour model. Fairly sure ArcheAge and BDO work that way over there.

    That is because many people in those countries use internet cafes to play games, not gaming at home.

    image

    "In 50 years, when I talk to my grandchildren about these days, I'll make sure to mention what an accomplished MMO player I was. They are going to be so proud ..."
    by Naqaj - 7/17/2013 MMORPG.com forum

  • Soki123Soki123 Member RarePosts: 2,558
    filmoret said:
    ...  The average wage is still the same as well...
    I think I'm beginning to understand why Trump got elected if the average wage in the US is still the same after 15 years... :D

    Ah yes Trump , I already forgot he was elected. All I can say is thank god I m Canadian.
  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 19,667
    kjempff said:
    Pay per hour was tried. That was among the very first models.
    Interesting, which game(s) had pay per hour and when ?
    Prodigy Net and Sierra Online to name a couple of the biggest outside of AoL. They were specifically entertainment services not ISPs like AoL or Earthlink. You had to dial in and once connected you could play their games. Pay was by the hour. Neverwinter Nights was also pay by the hour. I remember quite a bit of paywall in the early Internet where businesses were concerned.
    take back the hobby: https://www.reddit.com/r/patientgamers/

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  • CrusadecrusherCrusadecrusher Member UncommonPosts: 283
    Soki123 said:
    filmoret said:
    ...  The average wage is still the same as well...
    I think I'm beginning to understand why Trump got elected if the average wage in the US is still the same after 15 years... :D

    Ah yes Trump , I already forgot he was elected. All I can say is thank god I m Canadian.
    Oh give it a rest...Trudeau is already bending a knee to Trump..
  • IsilithTehrothIsilithTehroth Member UncommonPosts: 454
    Too many people rather play a half-assed game with hardly any retail value, marketed as Free, but in the end most of those people pay much more per month than what they would with a montly flat fee.

    MurderHerd

  • ArChWindArChWind Member UncommonPosts: 1,313
    Eldurian said:
    I don't know the exact date that 15$ subs became a thing. I believe it was around 2000. It definitely was by 2003. Check this out though:

    Inflation Calculator

    Put in the year you played your first 15 and the year you played your first 15$ sub game and hit "Calculate".

    Based on my estimation of 2000, a 15$ sub should now cost people 21$. Yet subscription prices have not increased whatsoever. People just want to go back to the good old days of 15$ subs but it's a lot like people who want to go back to the good old days of five cent coffee. It's been 16 years. We went through a major recession during that time period. 15$ doesn't pay the bills anymore.

    No consumers have ever shown any indication of being tolerant to them jacking up the prices though. Any MMO that did would be massacred by public opinion as "greedy money grabbers." So they gave us cash shops instead. That's on us.

    I don't get it.

    I play a F2P game yet I pay 15 a month because I like it enough to pay for it and support it. Yeah, it has a cash shop. I also go there and get stuff I want sometimes.

    I also play on a server that requires membership. Doesn't matter if peeps are playing with in game coin just that I know they are making efforts to support the game by buying membership.

    As far as inflation goes the real cost of servers has decreased over time so it kind of evens out.
  • donger56donger56 Member RarePosts: 443
    The market was vastly different in 2000-2005. If you were a MMORPG player then you picked one of a handful of games and pretty much only played that game. Either you were an EQ player or a DAOC player but generally not both at the same time. People picked a game and played it for months or even years. Those days are gone. Now we usually have multiple games released every year. People change games like they change underwear. Now the strategy is get people into high priced founder packs and sell them as much as you can before they lose interest and move on. 

    No one will pay a monthly fee for every game they play. The sub only model also keeps people form returning to see new content. It is just an outdated business model that doesn't work in the current market. I don't care if you charge 5$ 15$ or 25$. The amount really doesn't matter, people don't want 20 recurring subs for games they play casually. 
  • VengeSunsoarVengeSunsoar Member RarePosts: 6,543
    Actually most didn't. Most left and didn't come back till much later. The few that remained typically stayed with one mmo for awhile though. But we were always the weird ones. 
    Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it is bad.
  • kjempffkjempff Member RarePosts: 1,629
    donger56 said:
    No one will pay a monthly fee for every game they play. The sub only model also keeps people form returning to see new content. It is just an outdated business model that doesn't work in the current market. I don't care if you charge 5$ 15$ or 25$. The amount really doesn't matter, people don't want 20 recurring subs for games they play casually. 
    I remember a surprisingly dataset from superdata http://massivelyop.com/2016/10/11/superdata-says-mmo-gamers-still-stick-around-in-a-single-game-for-a-long-time/ .

    It was very surprising to me that "56% of US gamers play a single title for 6 months or longer". Ok numbers should always be taken with a grain of salt, but if the numbers are remotely true then rapid mmo-hopping is not as common as we believe it is.

    It does not in itself show that sub model is a viable method, but it does show that rapid mmo-hopping does not seem to be the reason why sub models aren't working well in todays market.

  • DrDread74DrDread74 Member UncommonPosts: 308
    It's simple supply and demand. $15 a month 15 years ago was a good price when there was literally nothing else around, just like we used to pay a lot more for Cars and cell phones, computers.

    There are literally hundreds of MMOs now. There is a ton of competition. Capatilism kicks in and everyone is offering "FREE MMOS! Pay NOTHING play as MUCH AS YOU LIKE". In theend we the consumer benefit. There are hundreds of free MMOs that all look spectacular. The best ones float to the top. It's an MMO paradise.

    http://baronsofthegalaxy.com/
     An MMO game I created, solo. It's live now and absolutely free to play!
  • DrDread74DrDread74 Member UncommonPosts: 308
    Shaigh said:
    Shaigh said:
    There is no reason why mmorpg should have a subscription.

    The old argument was network costs but that hasn't been true for a very long time. A newer argument is frequent content creation but developers never managed to do do frequent enough content patches to warrant $15 a month. The real reason for subscription is that they wish to earn more money and for a very long time mmorpg were a golden cow for publishers.

    The reason customers paid $15 a month to access the game was that mmorpg back then had a unique experience you couldn't find elsewhere. That hasn't been true ever since we started to have wow-clones popping up everywhere and as mmorpg became more and more about solo gameplay people no longer want to pay $180 a year just to access a game.

    If you want to charge people for extra content just sell it as dlc. It will be more than enough to keep things running.
    Citation needed.

    I believe it's a little more complicated than 'well, why turn off the money faucet'?

    You can rent a cloud server from Google, but do you have any idea what sort of specs you would need to run a MMORPG?  Do you know of anywhere you can get this for free (other than offloading the burden to the players themselves in a peer-to-peer network including all the pitfalls that entails)?

    There's no such thing as a free lunch.
    The problem that investors have with making new mmorpg has more to do with the initial cost of creating an mmorpg and little to do with how much they cost to run. These games went from costing $2M-$5M and now they are somewhere in the region of $100M-$200M. Instead of making it all back on box sales and a few months subscriptions it takes far more time to pay back the investment to make their original investment back. I have heard talk about half of all mmorpg project never make it to launch and that's a pretty tough gamble to make.

    What made it worth the gamble was that if your gamble paid off you had a part of the golden cow and got huge money thanks to subscription. Nowadays the golden cow has moved on to other genres.

    Please make sure to show a graph on how much of that $15 subscription goes to pay for network costs and tell me why I should keep paying for them.


    I wouldn't pay $80 to watch a movie, I don care how much it cost to make. Perhaps Multiplayer, full housing, completely customizable create your own cities with 82 management screens, 824 hyper detailed and unique monster models animations and AI with 43 voice actors speaking throughout 1200 quests IS TOO MUCH FOR AN MMO AIMED AT TEENAGES WHO CAN ONLY PAY $10 A MONTH!

    http://baronsofthegalaxy.com/
     An MMO game I created, solo. It's live now and absolutely free to play!
  • KyleranKyleran Member LegendaryPosts: 34,004
    edited December 2016
    DrDread74 said:
    It's simple supply and demand. $15 a month 15 years ago was a good price when there was literally nothing else around, just like we used to pay a lot more for Cars and cell phones, computers.

    There are literally hundreds of MMOs now. There is a ton of competition. Capatilism kicks in and everyone is offering "FREE MMOS! Pay NOTHING play as MUCH AS YOU LIKE". In theend we the consumer benefit. There are hundreds of free MMOs that all look spectacular. The best ones float to the top. It's an MMO paradise.
    Trying to figure what world you lived in 15 years ago.

    I pay much more today for cars, computers and cell phones.

    Auto and homeowners insurance, rent, steak, cable TV, all higher.

    TVs, those went way down,  but my dogs treats cost about $12 a bag.

    "See normal people, I'm not one of them" | G-Easy & Big Sean

    "I need to finish" - Christian Wolff: The Accountant

    Just trying to live long enough to play a new, released MMORPG, playing POE at the moment.

    Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

    Don't just play games, inhabit virtual worlds™

    "This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon






  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    edited December 2016
    DrDread74 said:
    It's simple supply and demand. $15 a month 15 years ago was a good price when there was literally nothing else around, just like we used to pay a lot more for Cars and cell phones, computers.

    There are literally hundreds of MMOs now. There is a ton of competition. Capatilism kicks in and everyone is offering "FREE MMOS! Pay NOTHING play as MUCH AS YOU LIKE". In theend we the consumer benefit. There are hundreds of free MMOs that all look spectacular. The best ones float to the top. It's an MMO paradise.
    There are two major points I'm going to disagree with you one.

    1. There is a surplus of quality MMO- There are surplus of MMOs, but it is exceptionally rare than any of them are actually very good. The vast majority of the the same game model rehashed hundreds of times with slight variations. In 2003 the main quality version of the WoW model is WoW and the main quality version of the EVE model was EVE. In 2016 the main quality of the WoW model is WoW and the main quality version of the EVE model is EVE. There are more games, but from a consumer standpoint we haven't really benefited at all because they are all crap except the ones that weren't crap in the early 2000s. And every quality game that has emerged replaced a quality game we lost such as SWG.

    2. The idea there are good, free, MMOs- Most MMOs require you to spend vastly more than 15$ a month to get the same level of quality you got for 15$ a month in the early 2000s. For instance most games offer a "free" version that is very limited. But in order to actually access most of the really engaging features of the game you will need a "premium subscription." That subscription is usually 15$. But then there are a ton of additional things you can buy through their cash shop that make your gaming experience more enjoyable. Where in the early 2000s 15$ secured you full access to the game on an equal footing with everyone else. So have games gotten cheaper? Not if you actually want them to be as fun as they used to be.
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