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The staff of gets together to bring you some behind the scenes insights on stories, the industry and the site itself.

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Community Spotlight: Why Are People Into F2P MMOGs?

Posted by MikeB Thursday December 31 2009 at 2:28PM
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This week’s Community Spotlight focuses on a thread started by forum user maji entitled “why are so many people into ‘free’ MMORPGs?” In the thread, maji wonders why free-to-play games are so popular, especially when given the number of cons he feel the genre inherently has:

“Sure, there are some great ones, but there are quite some reasons why I wouldn't play one.

• in general, the companies who make f2p MMORPGs have a lower buget for the game than the P2P ones, and more often you not you notice this as well in the game
• they are not really for free but rather like free trial. The deeper you get into the game, the more likely you are to pay some €€€ anyway and then you could also play a P2P game
• in many f2p MMORPGs, the one who pays most gets most. they level faster, look better, hit harder, have more options in general and whatnot. It's as if you'd play Monopoly or something, and you could buy an additional dice by paying 50€. In P2P, everyone got basically the same chances.
• if you are really into the game for a while, you risk to get into the mood to pay a lot for the game. Far more than you'd pay for a P2P which has a fixed subscription fee

I mean sure, you can download them, try them and play them for free. But if they are great, you're probably going to pay €€€ anyway. And if they are bad, then you wouldn't want to play it anyway. In addition to that, you often get less depth or less content. Not always, but often.”

I don’t have a huge amount of experience with F2P games myself, but a number of the criticisms ring true for me, while some do not. One of the main reasons I have personally stayed away from F2P games in general is found in maji’s first point. Whether we like it or not developing an MMOG is a long and expensive process, with a lot of variables involved, and many competing games whose feature set must also be matched and innovated beyond to get the attention of players. This essentially makes developing new competitive MMOGs harder as the genre ages.

For every new MMOG that innovates even with a single wildly successful feature, every game that follows it must be complete with said feature as well as many of the various successful features found in games dating all the way to back to games like EverQuest. If they are missing a number of these key “checklist” features they are considered lacking. The likelihood of a small F2P game as it is traditionally known to accomplish this is generally slim, and so that is generally a heavy consideration, at least for me, when deciding whether I want to spend time in a F2P MMOG.

However, games in the F2P genre, like indie games, do tend to do some things entirely differently, and many gamers find this more appealing than P2P games that simply say “me too!” The lack of huge budgets, and the risks that come with them, means they can also try out different ideas. Games like Dungeon Fighter Online are essentially side-scroller MMOGs, where do you see that in the P2P genre? You don’t. A smaller developer looking to create unique games like this would have a hard time convincing already skeptical gamers to shell out $15 a month, so F2P is a fitting genre for such experiments.

There’s also the future to consider. F2P games with item malls have been pretty successful, and appear to be emerging as a legitimate business model for future games. This means we may be seeing the sort of big budget games many of us look forward to playing, without the monthly subscription fee, in the relatively near future. I think what is more likely to emerge is a hybrid model similar to Dungeons & Dragons Online: Eberron Unlimited.

One point I mostly disagree on with maji is the point the idea that F2P games are essentially “pay-to-win,” as many of our community members describe them. It is true that some games offer item malls stocked with items that make a significant difference to gameplay, if not entirely necessary, but at least everyone is on a level playing field here. P2P games that traditionally don’t offer this functionality are subject to gold farmers and powerleveling services which accomplish the same goal but are not freely available to all players without the inherent risk of dealing with these unscrupulous people. The point is “pay-to-win” is happening in both types of games, it’s just that one is upfront about it.

But how does the community feel about F2P games? Let’s find out.

User Latella makes a compelling point about F2P games:

“To me, free to play games are not really free, but simply the same as a pay 2 play , only that i get choose when, how much and for what i do pay.

They also have the benefit that i can try them as much as i want and decide if it´s really a game worth my time and my money or not.

I tried many pay to play games where i paid the big $ buying the retail boxes only to find out i did not really enjoy it, where as in a free to play game, i would ´ve never paid a cent before i found out i didin´t like it.”

Many people don’t like to subscribe to P2P games because they feel that now that they’ve shelled out $15 bucks for the month they have to play a ton to get the most out of it. While I don’t subscribe to this practice, I can certainly see why it would give some pause to players. On the flip side, in my brief experience with F2P games I’ve come across games with play limits, which is extremely awkward and a huge turn off for me. For example, in my earlier example of Dungeon Fighter Online, you can only enter a certain amount of rooms per day, arbitrarily capping your play time. Obviously, this isn’t true for all F2P games, but it does occur.

Latella also brings up the point of having to pay for the game just to give it a spin. Obviously, most games have free trials, but they don’t often appear until later in the game’s lifetime so many gamers end up shelling the $50 out and finding out the hard way that the game isn’t for them. F2P are obviously free right out of the gate and avoid this issue, but it doesn’t mean P2P games can’t address this issue either.

The Chronicles of Spellborn was a “Freemium” MMORPG, where levels 1-10 were free to play for as long as you wanted, but if you wanted to advance further you’d have to actually pay up. Recently we’ve seen this strategy appear in troubled AAA games like Warhammer Online, Age of Conan, and Champions Online, which have embraced this “Freemium” idea. If this becomes a trend for new P2P games, I think they would have a leg up on one of the positives of F2P games.

Eqvaliser hits on another reason that F2P are popular:

“Im just tired of paying 15$ each month to a game thats not really that great anyway,
for 15$ a month i can get so many other things i rather have, like nice graphics,
amusement, excitment, depth.

Since most mmo's are by default developed to have some 600-800 hours of gameplay
why would i spent 1000's of hours, unless they continuely add content which alot fail todo.
Free mmo's or micro payments such as ddo. are great cause when im fed up with it
i donot feel as attached to my character as one i might have spent years and 100$
building up. and for what,.. ... nothing..”

Many of our community members are disenchanted with the genre as a whole, with so many new P2P games releasing in recent years and failing to meet expectations, I get the feeling that, at least in our community, many members are less willing to give new games a chance. This makes F2P games a bit more appealing as the barrier to entry is incredibly low, something we touched on with Latella’s point. As I mentioned earlier, I think P2P games can get around this issue by launching their games with a “Freemium” strategy right out the gate.

So what do you think? Why are F2P games so popular in your opinion? And how do you personally view the genre? Do the games appeal to you?

Let us know in the comments below!

Knightcry writes:

I would guess credit card issue for the younger crowds and people are tired of spending 50 bucks to a game and trashing it a month later. Free to play takes away the inital cost allowing you to move if you don't like it with no loss.  On the darker side of the conversation I'm sure f2p attracts the worst of the worst due to the no pay no loss mentality which is probably why most fp2 are bot and spammer plagued.

Thu Dec 31 2009 2:42PM Report
booboofinger writes:

 Personally, I have been won over by F2P games. The main reason being that when you pay a monthly subscription you almost feel obligated to play. That's when a game, which is something that you do for amusement starts becoming more of an obligation and a chore.

With a F2P game, that is no longer a factor. Apart from maybe being booted off your guild, you can go for months without feeling the need to log in. You can take some time off and when you feel like it, you can log in again and pick right up where you left off.

And like MikeB mentioned the whole "pay to win" factor is also a factor in P2P games. Sure, the F2P games are probably not on the same level of development as P2P, but that will change as time goes on and F2P becomes a more acceptable business model.

In a way, games like Bounty Bay/Voyage of the Century, Perfect World, Runes of Magic and to a certain degree DDO are already making this a reality.

I am very curious to see what will happen in a few years from now.


Thu Dec 31 2009 3:15PM Report
ekif writes:

I like f2p games because they tend to focus on settings not really found in the p2p. At times I want to connect with my "inner Bruce Lee" and other times, I want to Mech around. Now, I'm not saying I don't play p2p games. I enjoy LOTRO and used to play WoW.


Thu Dec 31 2009 5:52PM Report
xenex413 writes:

F2P is the biggest Scam ever, after 6 years of playing "Free" MMO games I recently made the switch to P2P because as much as people might deny it to compete in "Free" games you have to spend a LOT of money, for 6 years I spent more than $25 a month on various "Free" MMO's when I could have just paid from $10 to $15 only a Month in a subcription game, and that's only on the average ones, if you go a play let's say like Archlord Online or Rohan Online which supposedly are "Free" you will see how you spend over $80 a month just to compete and then find out the game is so lacking in support that it is overflowed by botters and exploiters who abuse every bug the game has which are many and it being "Free" are VERY slow to fix so you end up paying a lot to compete only to have cheaters win anyways, so from now on I will stick to the P2P model and stay within my limit of $15 a month tyvm, anyone here who says they don't spend a dime in a "Free" game I say congratulations but by doing that you don't amount to much in the game as the game is set up for the big spenders to have the advantage so enjoy getting one shotted and called a noob troughout your gaming career.

Thu Dec 31 2009 6:47PM Report
dodgetigger writes:

People always tend to see f2p games as the ones where the one with the most money wins.

But what about P2P games with a lot of grind? There, the one with the most time to grind XP and items wins.

Thu Dec 31 2009 7:46PM Report
Senadina writes:

If they've spent that much time to get the XP and items then they deserve to win. Any skill improves with practice and TIME. Letting money buy your way to the top, in ANY endeavor, is generally considered cheating, or at least unfair.

Thu Dec 31 2009 8:57PM Report
trancejeremy writes:

I think that's exactly the appeal of F2P.

If you aren't someone that spends their life chained to the computer , then you basically have no chance of ever getting the best stuff in a P2P MMORPG. Or even the highest level.

OTOH, in F2P games, you can at least substitute money for access to parts of the game you wouldn't ever get to.

Personally, I think both models are terrible. P2P are balanced for the no-lifers, meaning casual players have no chance to even experience most of the content in a game they are paying $15 a month for, just like the 20 hr a dayers. (I've sunk almost 300 hours into LOTRO, for instance, and am only 45, 5 levels before I get to Moria, much less SoM. And $300)

OTOH, getting to higher levels actually is pretty easy in F2P games (I've reached it in 2 f2p games, in about 1/3 the time I've played Lotro), but once there, you have to shell out money to do any of the good stuff. And not a little money either, like an XP. A ton of money.

Thu Dec 31 2009 9:32PM Report
Greyed writes:

They appeal to me for one major reason.  I have literally played dozens of MMOs in the past decade, most from P2P but some F2P. 

Today, right now, if I got bored with my current MMO (which happens to be LotRO) I can download the latest patch of a F2P MMO that I played in the past (let's say Runes of Magic) and pick up exactly where I left off.  I can then see if the game has improved enough for me to want to continue playing.  If not, I can drop it just as fast... and check again 3-6 months later.

For me to do the same with P2P games I am committed to spending money for a full month's subscription just to get a peek at the current mechanics of the game using my current characters.  Or I can create a throw-away email address and see what the game is like at the low levels again.  As any MMO player knows the lower levels rarely give you a true feel of how the game changes over time.  So that is no option at all.

More P2P developers need to focus their efforts on enticing former customers to at least give their game another spin every so often.  In a genre where 6 -12 months worth of patches can radically alter the look, feel and playability of a title it is sad that so little attention goes to showing people who have already fronted the money what the game looks like now, at the level they left off.  In that regard the F2P model is vastly superior.

Thu Dec 31 2009 10:43PM Report
libranim writes:

I've enjoyed several F2P games, and while some have evolved to a point where I'd give them credit for being actually decent, I still find them terribly dependent on time AND money.

F2P models always encourge spending money on their item mall items, lest it be cosmetic or one that influences gameplay. From here you can distinguish those who are dedicated and not, because f2p games will never ever cater to those who do not purchase the item mall merchandise. There, already there will be a rift in the community where you can seperate the payers from the non-payers, it's a awkward gap that puts people who do not pay for item mall items to be left at the short end of the stick.

P2P games, while not flawless, at least gives a ground in which everyone can be equal, regardless of time spent playing. But the main reason I enjoy p2p games are probably because of the community that it can create rather than that of the f2p ones. RP guilds, social guilds, events, and the like are more likely to be stronger in a p2p and last as long, whereas in f2p it fades too quickly and is too spontaneous.

Thu Dec 31 2009 10:47PM Report
Trihflu writes:

 I prefer P2P way more than F2P.  The last F2P game I played was DDO, and after that I"m never going to go back.  It's not that DDO is a bad game, but it's hard to keep me interested in a game unless I have a good reason to, especially in the first levels.  When I pay $50 dollars I almost force myself to get to the next level.  I payed $50 dollars for this thing, I'm not just gonna look at it and think, meh, I don't like it, ah well, 50 bucks down the drain.  But when I start a game like DDO, there's nothing tying me down, nothing compelling me to progress.  Community?  I just started the game, you don't get put into some random guild after you create your character.  A developed/ progressed character?  You don't start a game with ph4t l3wts or at level 9000.  However, I'm sure I would stick to it if I found a community or got to a moderately high level.

The other problem I with F2P is item shops.  Not only do you end up paying more than when you would if you played F2P per month, but the quality is substantially worse than a game that has had millions of dollars pumped into it by some well known game studio like Blizzard or NCsoft.  Lastly the P2P model tends to be easier than F2P.   You just have to type your credit card once or twice to pay for a whole year.  You have buy either in-game currency or even worse, you have to buy each in game item individually.  This results in 4+ micro-transactions a month.

Though I might return to the F2P model in-between MMOs, I certainly don't plan on dedicate as much time to it as I might dedicate to P2P. Not only is it cheaper in the long run, but the quality is a lot better.

Thu Dec 31 2009 10:59PM Report
MadnessRealm writes:

It is wrong to assume F2P Companies have low budget. The F2P model is EXTREMELY popular in Asia to the point where even several P2P titles in NA/EU (Warhammer for exemple) are F2P titles in Asia.

The "cash users are overpowered" in F2P games is also a false assumption as most games only offer fluffs items or XP boosts which, in no way, imbalances the game.

Also, F2P titles are also extremely time consuming BUT you are not bound to the usual monthly sub.  And oddly enough, the F2P games often receive more expansions (which are free) than a P2P game (and this is true).

F2P market is not money hungry as much as P2P market either. For exemple, I used to play Mabinogi (played for about 1 year). During the whole year, I bought 30k NX ($30 USD)  and that was all I needed, never felt the need again to pay for anything else. Had I been playing a P2P title, well I'd have payed $50 for the box, $20 for the expansion, and 12 months.....yeah.....

Thu Dec 31 2009 11:03PM Report
Terranah writes:

People like free stuff. 

Thu Dec 31 2009 11:15PM Report
scuubeedoo writes:

"in many f2p MMORPGs, the one who pays most gets most. they level faster, ..."

If you level faster on a game, it means you actually skipped content in some way or another, thus you got less out of it, not more. That's how i see it anyway.

Like going to a store, buying a game, and then give it to a friend of yours with some money and ask him to call you when he is about to see the ending of the game: that's retarded.

Fri Jan 01 2010 6:05AM Report
Ayin writes:

I play several F2P games, and one P2P (FFXI).  When I want a change in surroundings and gameplay mechanics, I go to the free stuff.  FFXI can be a lot of fun (but it's really group intensive, and I don't always have a group to play with), but you can get into a rut in any game.

So, I play:
A Side-scroller Action F2P MMO
A control-a-whole-party F2P MMO
An Action-Adventure with occasional boats F2P MMO
A browser-based solo-friendly F2P MMO
And sometimes a pet-focused F2P MMO

You don't get all that in one game, and I certainly could not afford the subscription costs for all of those each month.  I never buy anything from any of their item malls, and I do just fine.  Most of the games with Item Malls allow the payers to sell the cash items to other players for in-game currency, and that's enough for me.

I don't want PvP, and I never play games that force that on players.  Without that concern, I don't care what anybody else has, or what level they've gotten to compared to myself.  I have yet to see a "Pay to win" scenario in any of the F2P games I play.

My gaming time without F2P games would get really old really fast.

Fri Jan 01 2010 9:05AM Report
soulwynd writes:

I've always found that the price of a game, in particular mmos, is directly proportional to how much they want to hide how crappy their game is.


You can tell a mmo is shit by the following features:

-Free trial lasts less than two weeks and/or is limited to certain areas and levels/

-The game itself costs more than 30 bucks.

-When you buy it, you have to immediately subscribe.



It seems to me they don't trust their game enough to actually captivate players into staying and paying monthly. If they actually throught their game was good, they would want people to come and play it for a while to get hooked, since it's a good game, they would stay and pay monthly. But nope, they gotta milk with the game sale and making people only see the best bit of the game and not be aware of the tediousness of later, hoping they will buy maybe 6 months with the huge discount they give.

Fri Jan 01 2010 10:00AM Report
bigdaddysfe writes:

F2P is great for people who want a game to escape in for a couple hours or a place to hang out with their friends that isn't AOL or MSN(I recall people using Maple Story as a personal chat room). The big danger is if you are someone who plays to win. Do you want the best weapons? Do you want to be in the top 10? Do you want to be the first to get things from boss runs? Do you want to be a PvP king? These games cater to that mentality and this is where people fall into the trap of paying much more than the 15 dollars a month they would normally pay. These games usually have rankings for just about everything so there is always competition. Having a need to compete, playing the rankings game, and having access to money are a dangerous combination in a F2P game. People can go through thousands of dollars in "lottery" type games trying to get rare and expensive items as well as EXP, Power, and other boosters. Much like a gamblng addicition these peple only wake up when they realize they have no more money to spend or they have done something foolish like take their parents credit card and maxed it out. This and many other scenarios have happened in F2P games.


What makes F2P games frustrtating is that after realizing this, you feel cheated. Spending the money in the person's own fault, no company holds a gun to that persons head or steals thier numbers while they sleep and charges game money.  The harsh realilty hits however, when they realize they have spent 100-200 times more than the average member in the game and still recieve the same customer service and attention than if they have spent 0. GM cronyism aside, they compnay really doesn't care if you pay or don't. As a whole, of course they want people to spend money, but trying to get help when something bad has happened is subject to the same agonies as someone who had never spent a penny. This is nice from a socalist point of view that everyone is treated equally, however they are all treated equally bad. If you spent as much money in any other venue as you do in these F2P games you would be treated to a much better level of service and prompt if not instant service when you have difficulty. 

It is a easy trap to fall into for some and a painful lesson for those that have been affected by it. It;s nice to have all the toys but when you look over and a hacker or botter has everything you did and more and did not pay the thousands you did to get those items, you start to feel like something is wrong. You realize the company could care less about the game as long as the revenue streams come in, you realize the community complains about all these things, just to turn around and buy whatever shiny comes out that week in the cash shop, completely undermining whatever position they were trying to take.


The TL:DR version would be the old cliche, "Its a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there". F2Ps are great for causal play, but can become a money and time sink that have the chance to leave you bitter and frustrated.


Play responsibly.




Fri Jan 01 2010 10:46AM Report
Thraile writes:

After a few years of playing F2P mmo's I've realized that most don't have nearly the same amount of quality and care put in to them as P2P mmo's. Almost every F2P mmo I've seen some kind of a typo or glitch that I would never be in a P2P.

Also, the item shops in F2P mmo's have a bad reputation for being required to use once you get to higher levels in the game. However, the things in the item shops are usually small in most F2P's. For example, I am in the CBT for Allods Online and at the moment you can't buy anything in the item shop. In the item shop though there is a megaphone item which allows you to talk in Zone Chat. In the closed beta you can already talk in zone and I'm liking it and am disappointed that you will need the item shop in order to talk in the release, but I don't NEED it. Also, if the item shop has upgrade items and things like that there is almost always another way to get those upgrades without paying. Like in Runes of Magic you can buy Diamonds with in-game gold. So, if you find a good way to make a lot of money then you never have to pay real money.

Fri Jan 01 2010 12:51PM Report
geldonyetich writes:

I thin there's actually quite a few good reasons why F2P games are picking up.

  • MMORPGs just aren't as novel anymore.  You can get away with charging a bit more for something when it's new and interesting and there's little to no competition, but those days are long gone.
  • There's such a glut of MMORPGs on the market that trying to entice people in to even try your game for $15/mo is pretty unlikely.  "Free to play forever" is just the bait you need to pull the fish in to give it a nibble.
  • As MMORPGs move away from being compelling virtual worlds and towards being focused solo play experiences, the appeal to actually pay a monthly charge for them anymore has reduced considerably.

F2P is not just for indies or Korean imports anymore.  Just compare the millions that FreeRealms managed to allow SoE reel in to try the game versus the mere hundreds of thousands that their best hits (e.g. EverQuest) managed. F2P is giving DDO a last shot at hitting it big that they wouldn't have had otherwise. Guild Wars never charged a subscription fee and did just fine. 

People still charging $15/mo should probably wake up and smell the coffee: it's a largely obsolete pricing structure these days.

Fri Jan 01 2010 2:03PM Report
sanders01 writes:

 @Senadina, Then life is unfair, because it's usually the one with the most money, wins. There are some cases that people with skills rise above ones with money, but the overwhelming majority is money.

Fri Jan 01 2010 2:22PM Report
Yamota writes:

Why? Because some people have more money than sense and cant be bothered to put an effort in the game but rather want to pay their way to success.

There are alot of people in this world who thinks everything can, or should, be for sale.

Fri Jan 01 2010 3:15PM Report
NoobTech writes:

for me f2p games are ok as a distraction for a while. i almost always download the newest f2p game or jump into a closed beta and check them out. 80% get uninstalled within the first 10 minutes though, followed by another 15% once i hit the grind wall of doom. the rest usually stay because of riends playing or because they generally are fun.

the main problem with them imo is that theres no sensible limits on the amount of money someone can spend..thus making it (99% of the time) who ever pays the most money is the best, which i think is just plain greedy.

Fri Jan 01 2010 3:29PM Report
Gravebane writes:

A lot of people make good points and I'm sure going to repeat some what has all ready been said. The F2P games have a following and a good amount people play them. I myself have tried the latest in F2P games because sometimes I'm looking for something different, something that can really catch my eye.

But My time is valuable and I try to find a balance of game play, graphics, story line and ability to expand to keep my interest. Both F2P and P2P both have this issue. Are you worth my time is my first question, I know with in the first hour or so of a new game if i'm going to keep playing it or move on.  MMORPGs are a huge new area of people socializing with other players who have the same interest. Both these games types you can choose to be a loner or a social bug. For me since i don't have a lot money and the and wish to get the best of both F2P and P2P I tend to lean towards  the hybrid games. play a little bit and stay at the level or max level or decide to pay to continue on and expand my world for more fun. Their is fine  line with all these games, can they hold my attention. That's the big hump right their.

Some game companies(F2P) if you look real careful will pump out about 3 to 5 games or more that all look the same. the reason for this is they have a core model game they make enhancements too and keep changing the name, this keeps their costs low, they use you the gamers as play testers and they don't have to pay you for your time. all the while if they have you in the game long enough in the hopes that you do pay for premium items or content so they can get back some of their money.

The P2P games I admit have a huge cost upfront but if you cant figure out with the download/ free trial that you do or don't like the game. Well i can't help you. Most of us but not all that play these games are obsessive compulsive and the game companies know and cater to it. I have played many games and 6 years ago if you told me that their would be games out there that require me to pay a fee each month I would have told  you that your crazy. Well Im now in my 5th year of playing WOW and still play.  This company has managed to grab over 11 million subscribers and they all P2P. I will tell you all if this game did not have the content, Graphics, social aspect and the expandability that it continues to have I would have dropped it like a stone. these other companies need to get on board and use Blizzards model. The model of a RPG that people all ready liked (Warcraft). they need to do what ever it takes or your games/company will soon disappear.

Both types F2P and P2P games have their faults, but you have to tell your self is worth my money in some cases both my money and my time.  You should be able to figure that out in a short time.

Fri Jan 01 2010 4:38PM Report
ihaveurnose writes:

I'm sorry..but this is just dumb. I've played WoW before, and honestly..f2p games offer exactly the same experience. In fact the only thing that f2p games lack compared to games like wow and eq r the graphics. Other than that it's the same exact gameplay styles.

Now on this "fact" of ..spending more on CS items than a sub.. umm yea, for the most part that is completely false. The majority of f2p games allow u to trade CS items, and there r a few games out there that even allow u to trade the CS currency for in-game currency. So in most games as u get deeper into the game u can still progress and be the biggest most bad ass person without ever paying a cent. In other words..

i think u meant to say "In F2P, everyone got basically the same chances."


Honestly though, idk y ppl want to bash on F2P games when for the most part they offer the same thing as p2p games but at a much much cheaper rate. I mean sure if u rly enjoy a f2p u might pay like $20-$40 on a cs item (which is most likely something perm). But obviously every1 seems to think that spending maybe $40 at one time is "zomg! u should just play a p2p game instead!!" .. but look at the facts, that's $40 once after maybe a year of playing? compared to a set amount of $180 a year...yea p2p is definitely the cheaper route...

Fri Jan 01 2010 6:44PM Report
Innoss writes:

I will not play any game that uses an item mall. I quit eq2 because of it. I had characters in swg, eq and vanguard also but ill never play again because of sony's item mall. The F2P and item model games are just furthering the instant gratification casual crowd. Its directly marketed to that type of player. That same type of player has turned the genre into the crap pool it is now where we get games  built like rooms in a house. In each room are toys for kids to play with. Doors leading to other rooms.

MMO's were built on the concept of a WORLD. its the instant grats and casuals thats turned it into the playrooms we have now.

Fri Jan 01 2010 10:06PM Report
inpusk3t writes:

i didn't played a p2p mmo in my life,but i have to say there are a lot of f2p mmo that don't require any $$$ like cabal,i got to lvl 16x without paying a cent,and there are lots of other f2p's that are just fun and totally free.but they have to make some money to survive sa that's where the item mall comes in,like a donation to the company/publisher that holds the server of the game

Sat Jan 02 2010 5:25AM Report
Bael13 writes:

Pretty simple really i can play a game without paying a cent.. Some people waste a lot on Cash shops and stuff but most F2P games i've tried you don't need too. And on the other foot say i want to spend $30 on some sweet stuff now i can and make it last weeks months or whatever, then next months when i'm strapped for cash no problem its free to play so no need to worry.

Also it appeals to the Non Credit Card folks who want to play a game. And to those people who say F2P players are worse than P2P players its an outright lie i've played both types and the populations are equally as bad as each type.


Sat Jan 02 2010 9:26AM Report
swyftty2 writes:

hmm i think some people have maybe missed the obvious.  lets got over the title.  F2P   that makes it free.  It I decide I like it one month and play it , that month cost me nothing.  If I decide to drop the game for a year and get back on,  it is still free.    If I didn't like it,  then who cares, I didn't waste my time going to the store to buy and and blowing money on it.

As it is true graphics wise they are lower,  even good pay games aren't what they use to be. Anymore games are just beatable way to quick and I am done and really wasted my money.  Take the new Div 2 : Ego Draconis.  Its $50 and glitchy as can be in movement and has some not polished over horrible graphics.  It's not a waste of my money.  ROM on the other hand. has graphics for what I expect it to put out and yet has no issues doing something as simple as moving. Also, very hard to beat so it last me forever. 

Sat Jan 02 2010 12:09PM Report
Frobner writes:

The main reason why free to play games are becoming more and more populare is that they are providing decent intertainment.  At the same time the sub based games are falling way to short on quality control. 

Will I play a sub based MMO that is really a same quality as the free one ?  No - I will not.  

Pretty easy to answer really.

Sat Jan 02 2010 3:09PM Report
Stuka1000 writes:

Sorry in advance to all of you that like f2p mmo's but I view them more as a cancer on the industries backside.  They are low quality, cookie cutter trash pouring out of Asia with the same frequency that Bollywood produces low quality movies ( apologies also to Bollywood fans ).


They wouldn't be so bad if parts of the cancer didn't spread into the mainstream p2p mmo's but more and more we are seeing item malls and the like being considered for inclusion into the big boys.  If ftp mmo's & p2p mmo's are to co-exist then there need to be definate boundries that are not crossed in either direction and these boundries are at the moment blurred at best.

Sun Jan 03 2010 2:10AM Report
Yamota writes:

Very well put. F2P MMORPGs are nothing but the result of greed, fueled by stupid people with more money than sense.

Now some games, like Champions Online, want not only an online fee but also has a cashshop where you can buy respecs and other valuable things.

Boycott any MMORPG with an item mall I say!

Mon Jan 04 2010 3:28AM Report
Gikku writes:

On the P2P the biggest problem for me is this: I hear about a game releasing or coming up. I think "hmm I would like to give that a try." but, in order to play it as has been mentioned you have to buy the game and sign up, even if you don't stay with the game giving your payment information, just to give it a try. That is just too much money to sink into a game to see if I am going to like it then find I don't!

On the other hand F2P does have limitation which is to be expected and if I try it and don't like the limitations, graphics or play then I simply remove it from my computer and don't play it anymore. Only thing it has cost is a little bit of time. Not a fair chunck of money.

There are some pretty nice F2P games out there. Atlantica, Shiaya and a few others I have tried. No they are EQ, WoW, LoTR or some of the other nice ones.

Why can't they just give you a chance to try the paying ones without paying. WoW does and the limitations to the trial are small. You can't talk in a certain chat and you can't trade other than that you can enjoy the full game. Well not the expansions I don't think but still enough that you can decide whether you like it or not. You aren't limited to a certain level or stuck in a certain place unless you buy it.

If you play F2P and you don't buy from the store yes in many you are not going to have many things but you can still play and enjoy the game. In most sadly though if you don't you won't be as geared or have some of the cool things of those that do. That is your choice and if you are careful on your spending you may or may not spend as much as you would in P2P. Even the P2P are now offering things you can buy in the store for in game. It isn't armor but you can spend a good deal if you are not careful.

Mon Jan 04 2010 7:58AM Report
kostoslav writes:

I play F2P only when I wait for new P2P to come out (one I will buy/try/play). I will never get serious in any F2P coz i can't afford it (u need to spent much more than 15$ in F2P).

Mon Jan 04 2010 6:41PM Report
Tl12000 writes:

 I dont mind playing either F2P or P2P, but that fact that i have to pay for the game itself as well as the monthly subscription pises me off. This is why im encouraged only by games such as Eve which you can just download and pay a 15 month subscription fee. Games like Aion are another one where i have to pay for the game and the subscription fee, but other than that, f2p games arnt much of my thing, specially because it all depends on how much money you spend on the game that makes you better than the other player.


Take for example WoW, when you see a high lvled player in the game, you at least know he worked for it and deserves to be at the point he is in. Other F2P games that have item malls and such just give the better advantage to those who spend more and more some extent, RoM is not somewhat like that because all the items they sell can be obtained free in game but of course you have to work for it...

Thu Jan 07 2010 2:06PM Report writes:
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