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Another, more in-depth response from Yoshi-P regarding F2PFollow

#1 Jun 19 2013 at 9:13 AM Rating: Excellent
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Final Fantasy Online director defends monthly subscriptions in the golden age of free-to-play (exclusive)

As part of our larger interview with Final Fantasy XIV game director Naoki Yoshida, we asked the opinionated developer how Square Enix justifies a monthly subscription for its upcoming MMO relaunch. After all, most similar games have thoroughly embraced a free-to-play model, and those brazen enough not to, such as Star Wars: The Old Republic, quickly course-corrected after subscriptions and active players take a massive dive within the first couple of months.

Yoshida’s explanation, given through a translator, is a lengthy but interesting one, describing the mindset within a major corporation such as Square Enix as well as discussing his thoughts on titles like World of Warcraft and The Old Republic:

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There are many different types of MMOs. There are two big types or groups that we see. You have one group with games like your Rift or your Star Wars, which are very large-scale MMOs with established IP. Then you have your smaller MMOs, which are maybe new IPs that don’t need as big a user base to be successful. So we can start off with the big group, the large-scale MMO group, with your Rift, your Star Wars, your Guild Wars, your Age of Conan and The Lord of the Rings. These games all started out on a subscription model, or were planning for a subscription model when they were in development. Then, partway through, they switched to free-to-play.

Then again, you have games like Rift and Star Wars. Even though people have been saying that yes, there is this change in the market, everything’s moving to free-to-play, they still – up until recently – were developing a system that would be subscription-based. Even though everyone is saying the industry is going free-to-play, they still were developing these huge games with subscriptions in mind. Again, we’re not saying that one is better than the other, that free-to-play is better than subscription or subscription is better than free-to-play. But for a large game on that scale, what’s most important – more important than making a lot of money – is making a stable income, a stable amount of money over a long period of time. And so to develop a large-scale MMO like this, you need to spend a lot of time with a lot of resources and a lot of staff to make this game.

To do that, you need a lot of money, and to get a lot of money to do that, you usually need investors to invest in your game. Because you’ve spent a lot of money on getting this game ready and borrowed a lot of money from these investors, when you release the game, the investors expect to see returns. If your game gets a lot of users and a lot of subscriptions right away, your investors will be happy and you can pay them. But what happens if you don’t hit that number right away? You have a bunch of staff members waiting to get paid. You have a bunch of investors waiting to get paid. You have a bunch of contents that needs to get made because you have to have updates, but you can’t do it because you don’t have enough money, because you didn’t hit that number you were aiming for. And so what do you have to do? One option to get instant money is free-to-play, or selling these items. To get that money so you can pay off your staff, pay off your investors, and start making new content, switching to free-to-play, selling items, and using that money is one way to do it.

So why didn’t Rift or EA with Star Wars do this from the beginning? Why didn’t they start with free-to-play? There’s a reason behind that. With free-to-play, because you’re selling these items, you’ll have months where you sell a bunch of stuff and you make a lot of money in that one month. But it’s all about what happens during that month. Next month, the person who maybe bought $100 worth of items in the last month could purchase nothing at all. You don’t know what you’re going to be getting, and because you don’t know what you’re going to be getting, you can’t plan ahead. You don’t know how much money is coming in. If you can’t plan ahead, then you can’t keep staff, because you don’t know if you’ll have enough money to pay the staff next month.

With a subscription base, if you get maybe 400,000 members, you know that you’re going to have the money from that monthly subscription for the next month. You also know that you’re going to have 400,000 this month, and it’s not going to go down to 200,000 users next month. That type of jump really doesn’t happen with a subscription model. So you know that you’re going to have a steady income. Because you have a steady income, you can plan ahead further. You can make sure you have staff members to create that new content. By creating new content, you’re making the players happy. If they know this game is going to keep creating new content, they’ll continue to pay their monthly subscription fees. So rather than going for the huge $100-million-a-month hit that you might get with the free-to-play model, having that steady income allows us to provide a better product to the players.

Now, you have Blizzard and you have Square Enix. We’re the only two companies in the industry, basically, that are making MMOs with our own money. That gives us an advantage, because where other companies have to get money from investors and have to pay that back, we don’t have a lot of time to build slowly and be able to pay that back. Investors want their returns right away. With Square Enix and Blizzard, because we’re putting our own money into it, we don’t have those investors to worry about, and that means we can release something and maybe take a little bit of a hit at the beginning, but as long as we’re increasing the amount of people we have, then we’ll get that money and make the players happy. We’ll get into that cycle I talked about before, where we’re creating good content and have that steady income to keep the cycle going.

With version 1.0, even though we call it a failure, we still had a user base. During the time that we were developing this game, 2.0, we were able to increase the amount of subscribers threefold as well. Again, it takes time. It takes showing the users that we’re really into this and giving them that new content. But we’re able to see a rise there. That’s what we’re looking for in this. Again, we’re not saying—The market didn’t change. It’s that there are two different types of models. Choosing the model that’s right for your product and being successful with that is what’s important. We believe that the bigger the game, the larger the scale of the MMO, it’s going to be better for the game if it’s on a subscription model.

That’s why you see a lot of companies that chose the subscription model, that wanted to do what we were doing, but were forced to free-to-play. They didn’t go to free-to-play by choice, because if that was the case, they would have gone free-to-play at the beginning. They’d develop it for free-to-play, not full subscription, instead of being forced to go free-to-play. We hear a lot of people saying, “Star Wars is free-to-play now, it’s great!” But then you ask them if they’re playing free-to-play Star Wars and they say, “No, not really playing it.” Everyone talks about how great it is that it went free-to-play, but then you ask around and really, there aren’t that many people who are playing it since it’s gone free-to-play. If you spend all that money on a game ,release it, and it’s filled with bugs and you don’t have enough time to do your updates, people will leave. Players need that new content. Not being able to provide it is fatal. If they were able to produce as much content as players wanted, then people would have stayed there. We don’t really believe it’s a problem with the business model. It’s how that’s handled.
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#2 Jun 19 2013 at 9:16 AM Rating: Excellent
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#3 Jun 19 2013 at 9:27 AM Rating: Good
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very well spoken!!! Love this guys logic and courage to step up and make us all a bad *** game... Two thumbs up to you yoshi!!!
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#4 Jun 19 2013 at 9:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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Yoshi dropping the hammer on Bioware lol It's true though, as awesome a leveling experience as SWTOR was, the combat just wasn't compelling, and there was a pretty weak endgame. Lost interest pretty quickly after a few characters worth of running around.

When he speaks in detail about subjects like this you can tell he's a smart gamer, and not just another suit trying to pump out a game. Love the guy.

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#5 Jun 19 2013 at 9:39 AM Rating: Good
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Yeah, his reasoning is great. I'm also happy to read that their focus is content, and it's true. SWTOR lacked content and that's why I left.
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#6 Jun 19 2013 at 9:39 AM Rating: Good
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Very nice read ggwp Yoshi :)
#7 Jun 19 2013 at 9:46 AM Rating: Default
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TL;DR version:

"We spent out own cash, so we aren't beholden to investor returns. F2P is a quick means of meeting investor's demand for a return. We have no reason, therefore for a F2P model."

It doesn't rule it out, however.
#8 Jun 19 2013 at 10:10 AM Rating: Good
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However it hamstrings any motivation on their part ot move to a Free to Play model. The difference here is that they do not need a quick return on their investment. Even if they keep a minimum sustaining base, they'll create enough revenue to make content that can draw more in and sustain them further, or make game changes that amount to that.

Now, that's not as to say 1.0 managed to do that in any means. You have to meet the baseline out the gate.

There's no attraction for them to go free to play or buy to play. It provides to unstable of an income to sustain the game at this point. It may not be a direct 'no we'll never do it' but it most defiantly rules out the vast majority of situations that would justify switching models.
#9 Jun 19 2013 at 10:17 AM Rating: Excellent
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I hate that it's called "Free to Play". When sometimes so much of a game is put behind a pay wall.

When I see a game going to F2P, I automatically think I don't want to play it and that the game is a failure and not worth my time.
#10 Jun 19 2013 at 10:19 AM Rating: Excellent
Excellent, Yoshi-P!

Couldn't have said it better myself.
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#11 Jun 19 2013 at 10:22 AM Rating: Good
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Hyrist wrote:
However it hamstrings any motivation on their part ot move to a Free to Play model. The difference here is that they do not need a quick return on their investment.


I completely agree. They have no insentive to f2p this game. Seeing as ffxi didn't strengthens this assertion.
#12 Jun 19 2013 at 10:25 AM Rating: Good
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pulazka wrote:
TL;DR version:

"We spent out own cash, so we aren't beholden to investor returns. F2P is a quick means of meeting investor's demand for a return. We have no reason, therefore for a F2P model."

It doesn't rule it out, however.


I think a consistent paying userbase with a steady, mostly predictable, source of income over the long term is enough motivation for them to keep making content.

I doubt ARR will become the next Tortanic.
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#13 Jun 19 2013 at 10:26 AM Rating: Good
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pulazka wrote:
TL;DR version:

"We spent out own cash, so we aren't beholden to investor returns. F2P is a quick means of meeting investor's demand for a return. We have no reason, therefore for a F2P model."

It doesn't rule it out, however.


I would say it DOES rule it out.

It's not only that they don't need to pay back investors, but that they WANT the steady income from a P2P model so they can focus on content, and that they believe and have proven that steady income is better for the customers, and the developers, because they can constantly add content with dependable income.

Edited, Jun 19th 2013 12:27pm by Louiscool
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#14 Jun 19 2013 at 10:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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So pretty much FFXIV isnt going to be F2P? If so **** yeah, iv never like "free" to play games. What he said makes sense lets keep the money flowing so we can get all that new content!
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#15 Jun 19 2013 at 11:10 AM Rating: Good
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Bravo! What an excellent answer.

F2P is a product of our current culture, where consumers want to gorge on content (movies, games, apps) for free or next to free, use it to death, toss it in the trash and yell out "Next!" There is no loyalty or concern at all on the part of the consumer. I can almost guarantee that other than the "whales" who do spend big, very few people spend consistently each month, so a company's income can fluctuate wildly. It would be exactly what a CEO would want to avoid, and like he said, F2P was the last ditch effort to save those games, or they were shutting down. I personally never spent a dime on F2P games, and its annoying as **** to have to deal with a cash shop. We get enough "advertising" as it is in real life, be it from Google, Facebook, TV commercials, and the like. Please Yoshi, NEVER go F2P.
#16 Jun 19 2013 at 11:23 AM Rating: Decent
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Hatamaz wrote:
I hate that it's called "Free to Play". When sometimes so much of a game is put behind a pay wall.

When I see a game going to F2P, I automatically think I don't want to play it and that the game is a failure and not worth my time.


Did people rate him down because of the way he worded this? I agree with him but I would word it different.

When I see free to play I see... Come play me. I'm so pretty and I have fun content for you to play. And when you get to level 10 (of 50) you will have to buy Gear X, Armor Y, Item G. Oh, I'm sorry, that item needs this item and you have pay for it too. Well, you can buy this if you want and it will help so you don't have to buy item X and Y but having those will make it easier. So, just buy all three.

Its a bait and switch. Not really but you can't have true fun unless you're paying for the items and I don't want to pay for items. I also see F2P and I think of the above. Its not always like that but its not, not like that either.
#17 Jun 19 2013 at 11:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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WFOAssassin wrote:

Hatamaz wrote:
I hate that it's called "Free to Play". When sometimes so much of a game is put behind a pay wall.

When I see a game going to F2P, I automatically think I don't want to play it and that the game is a failure and not worth my time.


Did people rate him down because of the way he worded this? I agree with him but I would word it different.

When I see free to play I see... Come play me. I'm so pretty and I have fun content for you to play. And when you get to level 10 (of 50) you will have to buy Gear X, Armor Y, Item G. Oh, I'm sorry, that item needs this item and you have pay for it too. Well, you can buy this if you want and it will help so you don't have to buy item X and Y but having those will make it easier. So, just buy all three.

Its a bait and switch. Not really but you can't have true fun unless you're paying for the items and I don't want to pay for items. I also see F2P and I think of the above. Its not always like that but its not, not like that either.


Nobody rated him down...
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#18 Jun 19 2013 at 11:36 AM Rating: Decent
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Well, clearly I don't understand how the rating system works here. He was Default while I post and get Decent. So, since I have got default, I assumed people rated me down, which was the case for him. OK, so, he just has a default because he is... new poster?

Meh, I just didn't think it was fair if he was rated down because it appeared like he was bashing all F2P games just because they are F2P when clearly some are very good, just they are F2P.

Don't make me look more crazy than I already do! Ill come find you in the Beta and keep inviting you to my party and then disband it, only to re-invite you and say it was a glitch, then do it again.


BTW, I loved this article. It shows just how smart of a business man he is. It also shows that he plans on keeping this game going for the long run. Good for him and good for us!

Edited, Jun 19th 2013 1:46pm by WFOAssassin
#19 Jun 19 2013 at 11:39 AM Rating: Excellent
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WFOAssassin wrote:
Well, clearly I don't understand how the rating system works here. He was Default while I post and get Decent. So, since I have got default, I assumed people rated me down, which was the case for him. OK, so, he just has a default because he is... new poster?

Meh, I just didn't think it was fair if he was rated down because it appeared like he was bashing all F2P games just because they are F2P when clearly some are very good, just they are F2P.


His base Karma is default. Each posts starts with the users' overall base karma, not at a Scholar level.
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#20 Jun 19 2013 at 11:50 AM Rating: Excellent
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Wint wrote:
WFOAssassin wrote:

Hatamaz wrote:
I hate that it's called "Free to Play". When sometimes so much of a game is put behind a pay wall.

When I see a game going to F2P, I automatically think I don't want to play it and that the game is a failure and not worth my time.


Did people rate him down because of the way he worded this? I agree with him but I would word it different.

When I see free to play I see... Come play me. I'm so pretty and I have fun content for you to play. And when you get to level 10 (of 50) you will have to buy Gear X, Armor Y, Item G. Oh, I'm sorry, that item needs this item and you have pay for it too. Well, you can buy this if you want and it will help so you don't have to buy item X and Y but having those will make it easier. So, just buy all three.

Its a bait and switch. Not really but you can't have true fun unless you're paying for the items and I don't want to pay for items. I also see F2P and I think of the above. Its not always like that but its not, not like that either.


Nobody rated him down...


Yeah I am automatically default because many years ago(I think 2006) I roamed into the asylum. I came out battered and bruised.

I just personally do not like F2P. When the developers can put some parts, or any parts behind a pay wall that could be and most likely are important to a game and it ends up costing more than a monthly subscription anyways that just ruins my attitude toward that game.

I guess I could see where F2P is good for people that want to play many different MMO's at once, and aren't invested heavily into just one. For me, I'm different, I just want to play one MMO (FFXIV duh Smiley: tongue) with one monthly subscription fee that takes care of my access to ALL of the game and content (besides expansion packs).

I'm really happy to read this by Yoshi P. FFXIV seems like it is going to be the next game to hold me for years to come, and I hope it is.
#21 Jun 19 2013 at 11:58 AM Rating: Excellent
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I'll keep an eye on your posting, you seem to be a good contributor, I might reset your Karma for ya Smiley: wink
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#22 Jun 19 2013 at 12:07 PM Rating: Good
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Great article. I think what Naoki Yoshida was trying to explain, is the exact thing that happened to LOTRO. I was playing FFXI, and started LOTRO as a founder, and loved the game. But after awhile, content, updates, etc.. began to suffer and they went F2P. Now, for me, the game isn't anything like it used to be. I'd much rather cut back on my Starbucks a couple days a month and pay for a game like FFXIV. At least, with my subscription, I know I'm contributing, and will continually receive quality content.
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#23 Jun 19 2013 at 12:07 PM Rating: Good
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Nothing wrong with subscription models, if the value is provided for the customer.

I've been in Eve for nearly 8 years at this point, and they do allow a form of FtP in that if you can earn enough in-game currency each month, you can buy 30 days of time. (currently approximately $500m ISK, usually a bit less, not that much once you have a few months under your belt)

The stable subscriber base keeps them funded, but one HUGE difference between CCP games and Square... I've never had to pay for a single expansion in Eve. All future content is included in the fee after setting up the account.

I won't mind paying for XIV, and I'm happy to see that the initial entry price is not the full "Off-the-shelf PS game" price either, but if Square is collecting $180x2 a year (at the month-by-month-rate) from us, I expect real value for my investment.

$360 a year =Reloading materials for 3000+ rounds of my largest caliber revolvers (even more of the small caliber stuff), and my wife loves to shoot. It's her escape from handling extreme injury medical claims all day long. (and I mean industrial grinder accidents and worse)

FFXIV is welcome to her money, if for the cost, it provides the level of "release" she needs to keep herself sane in a job that already requires an Iron-hard constitution.

Edited, Jun 19th 2013 2:29pm by OtosanOokami
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#24 Jun 19 2013 at 12:25 PM Rating: Good
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Yea, "great" isn't the word that comes to my mind when thinking of SWTOR F2P.
#25 Jun 19 2013 at 12:42 PM Rating: Excellent
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OtosanOokami wrote:
Nothing wrong with subscription models, if the value is provided for the customer.

I've been in Eve for nearly 8 years at this point, and they do allow a form of FtP in that if you can earn enough in-game currency each month, you can buy 30 days of time. (currently approximately $500m ISK, usually a bit less, not that much once you have a few months under your belt)

The stable subscriber base keeps them funded, but one HUGE difference between CCP games and Square... I've never had to pay for a single expansion in Eve. All future content is included in the fee after setting up the account.

I won't mind paying for XIV, and I'm happy to see that the initial entry price is not the full "Off-the-shelf PS game" price either, but if Square is collecting $180x2 a year (at the month-by-month-rate) from us, I expect real value for my investment.

$360 a year =Reloading materials for 3000+ rounds of my largest caliber revolvers (even more of the small caliber stuff), and my wife loves to shoot. It's her escape from handling extreme injury medical claims all day long. (and I mean industrial grinder accidents and worse)

FFXIV is welcome to her money, if for the cost, it provides the level of "release" she needs to keep herself sane in a job that already requires an Iron-hard constitution.

Edited, Jun 19th 2013 2:29pm by OtosanOokami



Finally another person to rant about eve besides me....

To add something though most of the times Eve's expansions are usually fixes ship balances and stuff like that so the majority if you ask me shouldn't even be called expansions.
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#26 Jun 19 2013 at 12:44 PM Rating: Good
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TwistedOwl wrote:
Yea, "great" isn't the word that comes to my mind when thinking of SWTOR F2P.


Nope, swtor has one of the most restrictive F2P models of all time. You can't do any endgame raids, you can do I think 5 PvP battlegrounds a week, you gain less XP than premium players, limited numbers of inventory, auction house, bank, and character slots, a very low maximum credit amount, limited space missions, and limited gear you can use. I'm sure there's more, that's just off the top of my head.

That's what I really dislike about F2P games, they nickel and dime you to death. That's why I've always just paid a sub fee if available for those types of games.
#27 Jun 19 2013 at 12:47 PM Rating: Good
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Hatamaz wrote:
I hate that it's called "Free to Play". When sometimes so much of a game is put behind a pay wall.

When I see a game going to F2P, I automatically think I don't want to play it and that the game is a failure and not worth my time.

Not all Free To Play is bad or ends up costing you more. You can level all the way to level 60 cap on two characters in TERA without paying a single cent. The only things I saw omitted was an atlas feature, 5 extra character slots, some extra bank space, and a mount(Almost excluded the mount because you can earn one in game at lvl 11.)

The money doesn't all go back into development on the mmo it was earned through in my opinion, Otherwise WoW with it's 8-12 million strong fluctuating playerbase would have had expansions at three to four times the rate of FFXI, which it did not.

I am confident that ARR will not flop as 1.0 did for the simple fact that it is very playable, accesible, and modern. However, I am not sure what their target base of subscribers is? I do know that investors or not, every company has a bottom line of profitability they must meet.
If the worst case happened and the game costed more money to keep open than make profit over a good duration. Any company will close down or change their model.

I'm rooting for ARR though because I want to play an FF mmo. They should at the least look into short duration free trials over PSN to give players a chance to see the world without a cost entry via PSN download. And no, beta doesn't count because it is not the finalized game.
#28 Jun 19 2013 at 12:48 PM Rating: Decent
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Wint wrote:


Nobody rated him down...


Should I have? He seems like a decent enough guy. I mean I do loves me my downthurst, but I got to have SOME reasoning.

That reminds me, I need to make a picture for Upthrust...

Edited, Jun 19th 2013 2:48pm by Hyrist
#29 Jun 19 2013 at 12:49 PM Rating: Decent
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I know it's not an mmo, but League of Legends does a great job of F2P. I never thought I'd spend a dime but found myself wanting to buy things just to support them. It also helps that Teemo's Skins are so ******** cute.
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#30 Jun 19 2013 at 12:51 PM Rating: Good
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sandpark wrote:
I'm rooting for ARR though because I want to play an FF mmo. They should at the least look into short duration free trials over PSN to give players a chance to see the world without a cost entry via PSN download. And no, beta doesn't count because it is not the finalized game.


Yoshi has already stated that somewhere down the line there will be a free trial. I don't think it's necessary at launch though. While open beta might not be the finalized game, there won't be sweeping changes between it and release, so it's an excellent opportunity for those unsure if they want to buy the game to try it out for free. I'd think maybe 6 months to a year after launch would be a good time to institute a free trial.
#31 Jun 19 2013 at 12:57 PM Rating: Decent
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Teravibe wrote:

Finally another person to rant about eve besides me....
.

It does take a special kind of Crazy to thrive there.

Should also note the "Pay with game currency" model also depends primarily on players buying that game time for cash outside of the game, then selling it for ISK on the open market.

It also helps that Eve is based on " Don't undock with it if you aren't willing to lose it forever" attitude, as in any different game with item permanence, allowing players this sort of model would lead to extreme unbalance in very short order.

$30 buck or less expansions I don't mind in a subscription model, but the downside of a Gamer wife is having twice the cost to maintain parity.
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#32 Jun 19 2013 at 1:00 PM Rating: Excellent
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Louiscool wrote:
I know it's not an mmo, but League of Legends does a great job of F2P. I never thought I'd spend a dime but found myself wanting to buy things just to support them. It also helps that Teemo's Skins are so ******** cute.

Panda Teemo ftw!

When swtor went ftp I was kind of excited because it would allow me to play through some of the story lines I hadn't yet, but stopped paying for because I was bored of the game in general. When I saw all the crazy restrictions they added, I uninstalled and never thought about it twice.

Aion on the other hand, has a decent ftp model. The game isn't really limited to you, and the money is (entirely?) on vanity items, costumes, pets, mounts, stuff like that. I think you can buy items, but not anything that you couldn't reasonably get in the game, so no real pay-to-win situation. I haven't logged in in a bit, but I keep it installed and check it out every now and then.
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#33 Jun 19 2013 at 1:06 PM Rating: Excellent
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OtosanOokami wrote:
Teravibe wrote:

Finally another person to rant about eve besides me....
.

It does take a special kind of Crazy to thrive there.

Should also note the "Pay with game currency" model also depends primarily on players buying that game time for cash outside of the game, then selling it for ISK on the open market.

It also helps that Eve is based on " Don't undock with it if you aren't willing to lose it forever" attitude, as in any different game with item permanence, allowing players this sort of model would lead to extreme unbalance in very short order.

$30 buck or less expansions I don't mind in a subscription model, but the downside of a Gamer wife is having twice the cost to maintain parity.



I would gladly double my cost if my significant other would play with me. I'm just happy enough that she doesn't complain all too often if I go on a gaming binge.

Still though, she wasn't around for when I played FFXI. I keep joking with her, trying to get her interested in the game to play with me. Telling her that if she doesn't, then she's going to miss me when I'm gone after Aug. 27th.
#34 Jun 19 2013 at 1:07 PM Rating: Default
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Seems like business 101 to me. I bet Yoshi is annoyed as fuggg to have to keep doing these kinds of interviews. I would be.
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#35 Jun 19 2013 at 1:12 PM Rating: Excellent
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I'd be more annoyed by the interviews asking the most basic questions. Like, it's a re-release, you're a journalist, at least get a basic understanding of what the game is about before you start asking questions. You have the Producer/Director in front of you, not a random community manager.
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#36 Jun 19 2013 at 1:36 PM Rating: Good
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BartelX wrote:
sandpark wrote:
I'm rooting for ARR though because I want to play an FF mmo. They should at the least look into short duration free trials over PSN to give players a chance to see the world without a cost entry via PSN download. And no, beta doesn't count because it is not the finalized game.


Yoshi has already stated that somewhere down the line there will be a free trial. I don't think it's necessary at launch though. While open beta might not be the finalized game, there won't be sweeping changes between it and release, so it's an excellent opportunity for those unsure if they want to buy the game to try it out for free. I'd think maybe 6 months to a year after launch would be a good time to institute a free trial.


The free trial is basically getting the first month of play for free for those brand new subscribers. It'll be the same way it was handled in 1.0. I purchased the game and for everyone who bought it got the first month for free and after that is when they planned on beginning monthly charges. I forget how they said they would handle the old 1.0 accounts though. I seem to remember Yoshi saying that 1.0 accounts would also get 1 month for free to try the game out, but I can't say this with 100% certainty though.
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#37 Jun 19 2013 at 1:46 PM Rating: Good
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swisa wrote:
BartelX wrote:
sandpark wrote:
I'm rooting for ARR though because I want to play an FF mmo. They should at the least look into short duration free trials over PSN to give players a chance to see the world without a cost entry via PSN download. And no, beta doesn't count because it is not the finalized game.


Yoshi has already stated that somewhere down the line there will be a free trial. I don't think it's necessary at launch though. While open beta might not be the finalized game, there won't be sweeping changes between it and release, so it's an excellent opportunity for those unsure if they want to buy the game to try it out for free. I'd think maybe 6 months to a year after launch would be a good time to institute a free trial.


The free trial is basically getting the first month of play for free for those brand new subscribers. It'll be the same way it was handled in 1.0. I purchased the game and for everyone who bought it got the first month for free and after that is when they planned on beginning monthly charges. I forget how they said they would handle the old 1.0 accounts though. I seem to remember Yoshi saying that 1.0 accounts would also get 1 month for free to try the game out, but I can't say this with 100% certainty though.


I'm pretty sure what sandpark and (definitely) myself mean are a free trial for players who don't buy the game. Like how WoW offered a 7 day free trial for quite a while without having to purchase the game. I don't think it's necessary right at launch because of the Open beta, which is basically the retail version with a little less content, but down the line I think it makes sense to have one for potential new players.
#38 Jun 19 2013 at 2:11 PM Rating: Default
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I am glad he understands the difference, now go fix the combat system, or you will be ending up in a F2P MMO Mr. Yoshi
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#39 Jun 19 2013 at 2:21 PM Rating: Excellent
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Ostia wrote:
I am glad he understands the difference, now go fix the combat system, or you will be ending up in a F2P MMO Mr. Yoshi


This isn't directed directly at you, but just because one person doesn't care for battle doesn't mean the game is going to fail. It simply means that person won't play the game. There are an equal number out there who enjoy it, such as myself, who will play it in its current state.

Generally, we need to stop this "I don't like it so that means it will be a failure" mentality. It's not realistic.
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#40 Jun 19 2013 at 2:33 PM Rating: Good
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A combat system on it's own isn't enough to force a game into F2P. It is the main reason for someone who isn't looking specifically for an FF mmo. With good combat people overlook alot of things. Also Ostia knows this, I think they just indulge in being the opposite view of debates. I tease my younger cousins in the same way.

Ostia likes or wants to like the game too or they wouldn't have stuck around this long.
#41 Jun 19 2013 at 2:42 PM Rating: Decent
Nice words!!
#42Ostia, Posted: Jun 19 2013 at 2:58 PM, Rating: Sub-Default, (Expand Post) A combat system on it's own can force a game into F2P :) Swotor say's Hi! Tera say's Hi! Smiley: lol
#43 Jun 19 2013 at 3:03 PM Rating: Good
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Ostia wrote:
sandpark wrote:
A combat system on it's own isn't enough to force a game into F2P. It is the main reason for someone who isn't looking specifically for an FF mmo. With good combat people overlook alot of things. Also Ostia knows this, I think they just indulge in being the opposite view of debates. I tease my younger cousins in the same way.

Ostia likes or wants to like the game too or they wouldn't have stuck around this long.


A combat system on it's own can force a game into F2P :) Swotor say's Hi! Tera say's Hi! Smiley: lol

And yes i do like the game, but that does not mean i will turn a blind eye to something that is obviously a problem, unlike some people around here Smiley: sly


The combat system had very little to do with swtor going F2P. The fact that there was almost no endgame PvE, classes were ridiculously unbalanced in PvP (no, not because of combat, because Bioware continually broke and overbuffed class abilities and skill trees), and the game was riddled with bugs were the main reasons. Tera I can't comment on, never played it much.
#44 Jun 19 2013 at 3:14 PM Rating: Good
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What BartelX said. Borrowing a small part of a relevant post of mine from the beta forums:

Quote:
Now, on the other hand - Games like SWTOR (which I played, and apparently paid a subscription for about 4 months), did not deserve their money. Allow me to elaborate:
Leveling / personal quest were fine. Quality really.
End-game did exist, in theory, but...
...there were FAR too many game-breaking bugs. Also, numerous balance issues. The game had 3 healing classes and the 1st one was as good as the other 2 combined.
EA/Bioware had to recuperate development costs, so they left the game to die, from the very first months. Bug reports were not addressed for ridiculous amounts of time. A typo (Yes, a typo) made in a raid boss HP count meant that "Hard" was easier than "Normal" for about 6 weeks. And they wouldn't fix the bloody typo.
The ******** Hero Engine they used had serious issues rendering >10-20 people at the same time. The game had world PVP. Guess how well that went when it was running with 3 FPS (not a joke, literally 3 FPS).

Yes, when I saw the developers talking in an event EA launched in March 2012, I was disgusted by their responses. They seemed to stem from a know-it-all attitude which blatantly disregarded feedback AT ALL.

Sure, these douches did not deserve a subscription fee, ever, once someone went past leveling and experiencing the admittedly well-crafted story.

Does this mean that no game deserves a subscription fee? Hardly so. However, it's hard to justify such a fee if the game is buggy, unfinished, uninspiring on day 1.
That's why I applaud Yoshi-P and team's effort, because they have the actual chance to dazzle enough people to be happy.


Please, do not refer to SWTOR as an example. Myself and a guild of rather "burn-out" friends played it from launch, and it was a mess, for all the reasons stated above.

This game sucked so much at project management (Or, I don't know, somebody evil enough up the food chain overrode all good decisions? No clue!) that when it did become F2P it created the worst "F2P" monstrosity I had ever seen.

If they threw a few more limitations in there, in the end the player would be confined to level 1, the starting area, and 10' of playtime every time he/she logged in!

It's really - really bad, and I don't want to elaborate further (wasted enough of my days writing thoughtful and constructive posts on their bloody forums, back then!)
#45 Jun 19 2013 at 3:22 PM Rating: Good
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Icing in the cake? Now that SWTOR is free to play, I was able to track down one of the healer's threads from 2012.

The guys providing TONS (I mean it, read the initial post and scroll to see some responses) of feedback for the healer community were Bobudo and RuQu (bless them, whatever they may be playing today).

Yeah, they responded to exactly 0 of the requests. If one response ever came out of 100 open issues, it was to the tune of "Carry on, peons".

Disgusting. A **** disgrace. I could easily be playing that game til today, P2P and all.

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=283200
#46 Jun 19 2013 at 3:27 PM Rating: Good
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Sovjohn wrote:
Disgusting. A **** disgrace. I could easily be playing that game til today, P2P and all.


Same here. Had they actually addressed the horrific lag on the starfleet, or anywhere there were more than 20-30 people gathered, and actually fixed some of the myriad of bugs that they seemed to cause with every new patch, and actually added meaningful endgame content other than rehashing the same 4 operations (but oh wait, they added a nightmare mode to it now, it's totally new content!), and learned how to actually balance a class instead of creating a new flavor of the month every time they tried, I'd still be playing.

The story was fantastic. The leveling experience was spot on. The PvP (aside from unbalanced classes) was quite enjoyable. But then again, I'm completely hooked on FFXIV: ARR now, so maybe I should be glad that they didn't fix all that stuff. I certainly don't have the time to invest in 2 mmo's.
#47 Jun 19 2013 at 3:33 PM Rating: Default
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Smiley: lol You guys make my Day! Smiley: lol Swotor had far more end game than this game will have..... So that's one X

The combat system was broken in Swotor, and class balancing and pvp revolve around what ? Crafting ? Gathering ? Oh! Combat.... Hmmm! It sort of makes Sense.... Smiley: lol

Also remember how many of you said "Oh wait we don't even got limit breaks yet" Well we do now... They are a bad gimmick that add no depth to a combat system already is the most shallow one i have seen in the past 6-8 years.... Oh and classes are not balanced either :) My lancer would destroy my pug in any sort of dps fight.
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#48 Jun 19 2013 at 3:34 PM Rating: Default
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I agree. I'm happy it failed, though, because I'll be able to play ARR uninterrupted =)

But I can't resist - That major douchebag, Georg Zeller, who was in charge of "class balance" among others (and was a disgusting troll with no real knowledge of his role), I found out some mins ago that he moved to the other end of the world, Singapore, and left Bioware about a year ago.

I wish his sons and daughters grow up, read about SWTOR somewhere, and spit him in the face. That'll teach the smug ******* some manners! Smiley: madSmiley: coolSmiley: grin
#49 Jun 19 2013 at 3:38 PM Rating: Good
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Everytime EA gets brought up I get a little angry. For whatever reason, I feel like it's their fault that Bioware isn't as good as they used to be.

**** them for the crap that was Mass Effect 3's ending!!! And don't mention extended cut... I still chose to shoot the little star kid in the face and got surprised by the middle finger in my face that was the "Refuse" ending.

#50 Jun 19 2013 at 3:43 PM Rating: Excellent
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Ostia wrote:
Smiley: lol You guys make my Day! Smiley: lol Swotor had far more end game than this game will have..... So that's one X

The combat system was broken in Swotor, and class balancing and pvp revolve around what ? Crafting ? Gathering ? Oh! Combat.... Hmmm! It sort of makes Sense.... Smiley: lol


Agree to disagree I guess. Moving on.
#51 Jun 19 2013 at 3:43 PM Rating: Excellent
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Ostia wrote:
My lancer would destroy my pug in any sort of dps fight.


Wait, so you're saying Dragoons will actually be wanted for parties?!
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