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General Discussion 

News & Features Discussion  » Star Wars: The Old Republic: F2P: How Soon Is Too Soon?

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64 posts found

Hard Core Member

Joined: 2/14/10
Posts: 1980

8/02/12 9:54:41 AM#21
Originally posted by Osirrus

i think this is a trend were seeing from  a lot of developers now.

release game as subscription based.

make there initial investment back through box sales and monthly subs.

milk the monthly sub for as long as possible.

say game was alway meant to be free to play

and switch to a FTP model that has been in developement since before launch.

I understand this is a way for the games companies and investors to make the investment back asap. but as a gamer it always make me feel like the games company pulled a fast one on me and if i had only waited x amount of months i could of gotten 90% of the game or w/e free ...

Yeah especially with a game like TSW that already had a cash shop built in.  I used to hate this trend but I don't mind it so much anymore since I tend to jump around a lot.  If I was still all hard core into one game I would hate hate hate it.

Wa min God! Se æx on min heafod is!


Novice Member

Joined: 7/20/12
Posts: 16

8/02/12 10:05:48 AM#22

What ended TOR for me was the fact they didn't care to listen to any of the beta testers feedback. I played on character to 50 and quit. The people there don't care about what is wrong with the game and release patches. TOR is a epic fail in my opinion and will be done by early next spring.


Novice Member

Joined: 4/16/06
Posts: 897

8/02/12 10:06:01 AM#23

I would like to see all MMOs launch as B2P. Nowadays, most MMOs play like single-player co-op/competitive games, so why shouldn't they be priced as such? The Call of Duty, Battlefield games are not so different from MMOs now. Yes, sell the client to offset development costs, offer a cosmetic cash shop, and play for free.

The problem I have with the F2P/Hybrid model is it limits access to the base game. SWTOR will be limiting race choices, character slots, bag and bank space. LOTRO limits quest content. Many of these supposed F2P games are more like free to try.

B2P should offer the base experience for the price of a single-player game and sell expansions which are basically DLC. Even tho I am no fan of the original GW, they were visionaries when it comes to their pricing model. Now every single-player game has DLC (expansions) to prolong the game's life. The line between MMO and single-player  is blurring fast.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/06/08
Posts: 2370

8/02/12 11:25:56 AM#24
Originally posted by Theocritus
Originally posted by Osirrus

i think this is a trend were seeing from  a lot of developers now.

release game as subscription based.

make there initial investment back through box sales and monthly subs.

milk the monthly sub for as long as possible.

say game was alway meant to be free to play

and switch to a FTP model that has been in developement since before launch.

I understand this is a way for the games companies and investors to make the investment back asap. but as a gamer it always make me feel like the games company pulled a fast one on me and if i had only waited x amount of months i could of gotten 90% of the game or w/e free ...

         I've taken the wait and see approach since WoW came out in 2004 (last MMO I bought the box for)......If you can get past the "I have to be first in line" mentality that so many gamers have, it will save you alot of money.....

That's wisdom right there. That approach is one I've taken with almost every game. My day 1 buys have been Skyrim and GW2, and those were the first in MANY years only because I knew I'd get my money's worth. I never understood the "first" mentality, but I suppose I should be thankful to those who rush out and get everything at its highest price; it's probably because of them that people like me can wait for a Steam sale.

"Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."


Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/23/10
Posts: 160

8/02/12 11:26:32 AM#25

Given the budget behind this, I'd absolutely say it's too soon. I don't see going F2P as a necessarily bad thing, but I see it as something that happens over time when a MMO loses enough of it's playerbase due to natural attrition over the years that F2P becomes a more attractive option. Most of these MMO's have been big names, but they had nowhere near the funding or marketing budget that SWTOR had, and lasted FAR longer (granted, it was a different market back then as well).


Honestly, the fact that DCUO lasted longer is sort of funny. I mean, it's completely irrelevant because trying to compare the two is silly (again, two different markets at the time, and DCUO could have benefited from an earlier transition), but public perception plays a big role and the popular opinion is that F2P transition = failed game.


Seriously though, with the kind of power the game had behind it, it's actually pretty disappointing to see it struggle as much as it has since launch. It shows that EA/BW couldn't produce a game that was compelling enough to justify a subscription, and the fact that they've had attrition rates this high (roughly 70%ish of initial purchasers canceling within the first 9 months) is embarassing.


Makes me happy though. Been wanting to play the game for the story but didn't want to support EA/BW because I felt they made too many mistakes with the game and wasn't a fan of a lot of what they did. This now gives me an opportunity to play it for free and decide later if I want to support them financially or not.


Spotlight Poster

Joined: 7/09/11
Posts: 2232

May the game be ever in your favor.

8/02/12 11:47:06 AM#26

I'll have to disagree that the subscription model is "becoming dated and irrelevant." And Guild Wars 2 will never be free. It's a Buy to Play (B2P) game as was the original Guild Wars was. You didn't see Guild Wars ever going free to download and play did you?



Novice Member

Joined: 10/19/04
Posts: 221

8/02/12 11:51:28 AM#27

"I am glad that Jeff and Matt were so candid in saying SWTOR should have been a F2P game from the get go. I believe most every game should be."

dear mr murphy,

i'm very curious about some things and maybe you can help me understand. how much does a mmog like rift, tsw or sw:tor cost during development and how much does it monthly cost to keep games like them running? on gamasutra i once read that a high budget game needs an investment of 25 to 50+ million dollars and that 75% of every 15$ a player spend for a month playing are for employees, further development, taxes, traffic and so on. should this be true how long would it take to get profit out of a high budget game if it will be relased with a f2p payment system right from the start?

if these numbers are correct a 50 million budget mmog will need 500.000 subscribers to a premium account per month for around 20 months to get even with the initial investment. and how likely is that? rumors saying that sw:tor cost 200 million dollars including (!) the licence payment to lucas art for 3 years for the star wars franchise. these are my informations after doing research on this topic, but maybe they are wrong, if you have other numbers it would be very nice if you can share them with me (us).

many regards



Elite Member

Joined: 11/12/07
Posts: 1966

Crosby P. Jenkins

8/02/12 11:54:27 AM#28

7 to 9 months after charging $150 for a Collectors Edition game.











When do we see a story on what perks people that bought the game should/might get?


Advanced Member

Joined: 11/18/07
Posts: 140

8/02/12 12:31:35 PM#29

I think that pretty soon games will launch with a hybrid subscription and F2P option.  All it will take is a AAA game and company doing it before it becomes the industry "standard".  That could have been TOR, but I think that Bioware and EA were a bit arrogant and over confident and just assumed that the Bioware story and Star Wars setting would keep people paying subs.  Heck I wouldn't be surprised if they had thought that $14.99 was a steal and that they could have charged $19.99 a month.

Neverwinter Nights from Cryptic/Perfect World will launch F2P, but I don't know if that will be enough to have the industry wide effect.  I think people will attribute the move to Cryptic being owned by Perfect World and will forget that Cryptic had a lot of success with the F2P hybrid model with CO and STO, and most likely would launch that way regardless of being with PWI.

I have a feeling that when SOE launches Everquest Next that it will have a Hybrid sub/F2P model.  I think they have come to see the value in F2P and that they will do it to benefit from the news the move will be.  And after that I think a lot more games will start to launch that way.

Right now companies seem to be using a F2P conversion as a way to get a sort of "second launch" and generate news and hype.  The fact that TOR is doing this soon tells me that they had had these plans ready for some time now.



Joined: 11/22/05
Posts: 17123

"what a boring life, HATING everything" -Gorilla Biscuits

8/02/12 12:40:56 PM#30

I have to say they should have released that way. The F2P model fits the game design a lot better than a sub does, not to mention the growing disdain towards the P2P model out there. It would have helped sell the game IMO, it would have also saved EA/BIoware from much of the outrage they've received. All in all the B2P model would have made a much more attractive package for many.

For every minute you are angry , you lose 60 seconds of happiness."-Emerson

It is a sign of a defeated man, to attack at ones character in the face of logic and reason- Me


Novice Member

Joined: 11/19/05
Posts: 2018

The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.

8/02/12 12:55:34 PM#31

Could re-title the article as Too Soon or Not Soon Enough?!? In some cases, games should start F2P.


Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/25/12
Posts: 1166

I'm only playing the role chosen for me. Who you supposed to be?

8/02/12 12:59:17 PM#32
Originally posted by Osirrus

i think this is a trend were seeing from  a lot of developers now.

release game as subscription based.

make there initial investment back through box sales and monthly subs.

milk the monthly sub for as long as possible.

say game was alway meant to be free to play

and switch to a FTP model that has been in developement since before launch.

I understand this is a way for the games companies and investors to make the investment back asap. but as a gamer it always make me feel like the games company pulled a fast one on me and if i had only waited x amount of months i could of gotten 90% of the game or w/e free ...

Over generalization but understand your point.  Dont think BW created SWTOR secretly as F2P then sold it as P2P.  They already admitted that the model was wrong as well as how much work they had to do to strike the appropiate balance between free and CS content.

I dont know why we keep talking about how much money a game makes or who the investors are when we have no empirical evidence to validate any claim.  Its all speculation.  Lets get back to talking about the game itself and how we feel about playing it (or not).


Advanced Member

Joined: 1/30/07
Posts: 283

8/02/12 1:51:05 PM#33

Am i paranoid or trying to rationalise F2P route of SWTOR  with latest column/articles ?


Advanced Member

Joined: 3/24/09
Posts: 1835

8/02/12 2:24:24 PM#34

Switching business models like this is a bad way to treat customers. Sometimes it's unavoidable....and in this case probably needed to be done. However a company should DESERVEDLY get it's brand reputation dinged for pulling stunts like that.

If I sell you a product today, you should be able to have relatively high confidence that I don't give it away to everyone else tomorrow. If I sign you up for a service based on a specific pricing plan this week, you should have relatively high confidence that I won't be switching (bait and switch) plan around on you tomorrow.

Else what does that say about how I value your patronage as a paying customer. What does that say about whether you can rely  on the stability of my plans, offers and products?

At the very least, the customer would be justified in NEVER purchasing one of your products again at or near release...because they know it likely they could get the same product  for free or vastly reduced price just by waiting a couple months. They would also be justified in NEVER signing up for a long term commitment (i.e. multi-month plans or game cards) from you again, because they couldn't rely on the terms remaining consistant with what they signed up for. More likely they would just simply refuse to do business with you again and find a competitor who was predictable and stable in the goods, services and pricing models they offered thier most customers VALUE perdictability and stability in a brand.

Again sometimes things like this are unavoidable in business...but it's something that should be approached very hesitantly...and is clearly the result of mismanagement and poor planning..... and frankly when businesses DO need to switch pricing plans or business models, they USUALY offer some form of compensation for existing customers as recompense for the disruption.

  User Deleted
8/02/12 3:09:19 PM#35

I hate to be the debbie downer of the forums. but F2P won't save this game. I predict by end of 2012 and the latest march 2013 this game will be shut-down or in maintence mode. It's just that bad. unless they overhaul the pathetic engine and start taking this thing off the rails it will keep sinking regardless of payment model. Thats about it for my opinion on TOR.


Novice Member

Joined: 9/24/10
Posts: 3448

The problem with censorship is ********

8/02/12 3:10:50 PM#36

Too late, should have been f2p or b2p from the beggining.


Novice Member

Joined: 6/20/10
Posts: 1641

I am here to chew bubblegum and to kick ass... and I'm all out of bubblegum!

8/02/12 7:00:10 PM#37

Funny I bet they are kicking themselves in the ass over at Lucasarts for canning SWG.

"I am not in a server with Gankers...THEY ARE IN A SERVER WITH ME!!!"


Novice Member

Joined: 3/03/10
Posts: 1057

8/02/12 8:40:52 PM#38
They should all be F2P/B2P at this point. The market is saturated with MMO titles. People flip flop between games like crazy, because innovation is dead. May as well make it easy for them to do so. 

Novice Member

Joined: 8/28/05
Posts: 675

8/02/12 9:34:37 PM#39
Originally posted by jeremyjodes

I hate to be the debbie downer of the forums. but F2P won't save this game. I predict by end of 2012 and the latest march 2013 this game will be shut-down or in maintence mode. It's just that bad. unless they overhaul the pathetic engine and start taking this thing off the rails it will keep sinking regardless of payment model. Thats about it for my opinion on TOR.

I agree. If people play this game it will be for the personal story. Assuming they can play that out without paying, then where isn't anything all that interesting to make them want to sub.

I doubt they will bring out anymore voiced personal quests arcs, unless they are all ready mostly done. No point in throwing good money after bad. So what quests will people miss out on after 50?


Novice Member

Joined: 12/17/10
Posts: 158

8/02/12 10:38:14 PM#40

The market can only sustain so many games and F2P games are out in abundance.

They invested too much into a Star Wars mmo when they could have made a generic scifi world mmo at a fraction of the cost with decent quality gameplay. Having many fetch and grind quests or like we have over 10,000 quests in-game isnt a good way to keep people playing.

Games need to be fun 1st, stable 2nd, and have replay value.

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