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News & Features Discussion  » [Editorial] General: How Free-to-Play is Killing Gaming – Part One

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130 posts found
  Teao

Novice Member

Joined: 10/19/04
Posts: 4

10/05/12 2:11:28 PM#41

You are according to your profile 27 years old. Digital software piracy via downloads and copy protection by developers and cracking of those protections by hackers has been going on since BEFORE YOU WERE BORN. Granted the only reason this didn't occur in music and movies first is because they were not digital yet so the piracy was analog and hence did not allow for being downloaded but facts are facts.

...shakes fist, damn kids, get off my lawn.....

 

 

  itsneo

Novice Member

Joined: 11/28/05
Posts: 20

10/05/12 2:19:15 PM#42
Originally posted by rumpleman

Ugg... why does everything have to be so absolute?

 

"Free to play is killing gaming", "this game is dead", or "that game failed".

When in all actuality, lots of people are gaming. Some would argue that there are more gamers than ever before. And those games that people often quote as "dead" or have "failed" are still making money or they wouldn't be online.

 

Just because "you" don't like a particular game or aspect of a game, does not mean the sky is falling. If you want things to change, make a stand and stop spending money on the games you dislike.

 

/endrant

edited typo's

I agree with this statement, F2P is not the enemy.. we are.  The problem is not the buisness model, its the player base.  WE force the companies into being more creative with their buisness models because WE are more choosy, we have more games than ever to dedicate our gaming time to.  WE have other finacial responsiblities, WE are more and more becoming more demanding, have more expectations, some unrealistic.    WE, the gaming community sub-culture as a whole are the issue here.  WE are killing games.   WE are all as unique as the next fellow in game genre's, gaming playstyle, preferences, likes and dislikes and, frankly, now that there are MILLIONS of gamers, and for this conversation I am going to exclude console gamers as, well, this is MMORPG.COM.. so we will stick to MMO's, WE have come to expect ALL our demands be met or we simply move on to the next game.  

I might add, I am rather disappointed in this article, it's poorly written.  The examples used to justify your opinion are weak and in all honesty, self-saticfying.   I mean.. The Sims?  Who even played that?  Kidding, I know allot of people did, it was a distraction from other MMO's when one was needed, like SL, or IMVU, or some other SOCIAL, and or REAL LIFE/VIRTUAL LIFE line blurring games are.  

Look, Free to PLay is not the enemy, subscription based business models are no longer the BEST models to use, Cash Shops, Pay for Power, or Pay to Win, how ever you wish to coin it, is here to stay.   This article would be better served if you were not forcing your opinion on us as fact.  You failed.    And I wont even begin to touch on my personal choice of business model because I'd like to think it varies.    BUT..   if given the choice I would have to say it is totally dependant on the title.    Allow me to elaborate;

Lets take a title like the recently released Guild Wars 2, and its predecessor Guild Wars 1.  Here is a business model that clearly has worked, pay for the game, no sub fees, pay for expansions, and a cash shop you CAN  use if you so desire for consumables, social items etc...    While I PERSONALLY think this is a great model, and perhaps even IDEAL, I would like to say that a PERFECT model in my view would include the above with an OPTIONAL subscription.  Subscribing has its bennifits, so I would hope there'd be some real advantage to subbing to a game with this model, say, sub based content, or items, exp buffs, etc.. 

Now, lets look at the subscription only model, keeping it recent,  games like Rift, WoW (yes I know wow is free for 20 levels, so is Rift), TSW, etc..  All pay for client, pay for subscription, and pay in cash shops.  All fine and dandy untill you burn through all the content and get bored, a new title is released, cancel sub, play new title, get bored, and re-sub to your favorite game.    Lets be frank.. While wow may be the king of subcriber accounts, it was NOT king of the mmo's, if one uses percentages, wow may have had the largest number of subscribed accounts, but it also has the largest percentage of canceled subbed accounts as well.  Simply because of its numbers.    But my point in bringing this up is only to show that subbed based business models are not always the best way to keep your players long term.  

Next, lets look at the Free to Play model, and the massive number of titles in the business model, and lol, all the titles that have converted to it  from a sub based model, those that are about to (swtor, AoC, and Aion are just 3 examples) .  I use these three because I subbed to all of them at one point.  There are also a slew of titles upcomming that will be FREE to PLAY..   Why?  An attempt to KILL the gaming industry?  LOL come on..   the only thing that can kill the industry would be we all stop playing games, and that's not likely to ever happen, even as we grow older, we, er I at over 40, are still gaming.  And younger generations are joining in on the fun.  Free to Play just opens the doors to more and more gamers, who, perhaps do not have the cash for subscriptions but do, perhaps from time to time have a few extra bucks they can sink into a cash shop or micro-transaction shop as they are better known as in the industry, for some gear or consumables, or bag expansions, what have you.

I do not claim to be a profesional writer, nor is my spelling all that accurate, and lacking a spell checker in this forum post, pretty sure you will find many.  Nor to I claim to be an expert in the gaming industry, I do however claim to be a gamer, and as a true gamer, perhaps old-school gamer, business model means absolutley NOTHING to me..  What matters, and what should matter is whether or not I enjoy the game, that is what will keep me playing.  If I am no longer challenged, I move on.   Hell I paid over a 100 bucks for all of WoW's expansion, bought 6 months of game time, and I played 2 weeks.  Did I give it a fair chance? Perhaps not, but no game that lets me go from level 1 to 85 in three solid days is worth my time.  And I am not singling out WoW here, so fan boys and haters need not troll, but its true of ANY title..   Sorry TSW, loved the game, just blew through it too fast, same is true with swtor, and many other titles.  

In closing, articles like this, frustrate me, passing one's opinion off as fact is, well, shameful. The FACT is, we are all very different, and the opinions on this subject are as varied as we are unique.  I do not believe that any one opinion, be it mine, or anyone ones will be the answer to the gaming industry woes.  The Fact is, some people do not like to pay subscriptions, some perfer it thinking they get ALL the game has to offer for a montly fee, some like a mix, some like Box Priced games with no subs and a cash shop to support the developers and still, some prefer a mix of all three.   There is no industry killing business model.  There is however game killing players who move on for lack of .. well content, a game that keeps their attention, and I have been at this a loong time, very looooong time.   I can say with some certainty, no matter the business model, if you love a game, you stay and play, if you get bored and move on to other games , you WILL come back to the one game you loved most, provided it is still online.    Lets put the game killing chat behind us and own up to our own faults first.  WE are the game killers.  

 

thanks all.  cheers.

  Superman0X

Elite Member

Joined: 3/28/06
Posts: 953

10/05/12 3:04:13 PM#43

Derek,

You have good intentions, but you are limited by your experience. I (personally) have been involved with online computer games for a lot longer, and as such see a lot longer trail.

Early Online games were initially monetized via per minute charges, which some companies then streamlined into monthly charges. Many of these games were F2P, as they originally ran on the server back end, with a light client (think browser games of today).

It was not until they started making larger clients that required distribution that P2P was even created. Out of this came the F2P/P2P battle that we know today. There were clear F2P 'winners' in the west as early as 2001 (RuneScape). They clearly set the tone of F2P in the west, and showed the dominance of the monthly sub in the west.

In the east, more specifically China, F2P evolved differently due to legislation that outlawed subscriptions (think AOL style subscription abuse). Time (but not subscription) was still a common method of monetization, but many games chose to offer an a la carte mode, or item mall/cash shop. This is the start of what many current gamers call F2P today.

The evolution of DLC is slightly different. DLC was seen as a way for publishers to make a direct sale to the customer. This allowed them to make a much higher % of the revenue from a sale, and cut out the retail requirement. It helped them establish a direct billing relationship to the customer, and in doing so, be able to market to them directly.

I am interested to see your part 2, but based on par 1, I am concerned that your lack of experience may affect it as well.

  Dhraal

Novice Member

Joined: 11/13/09
Posts: 40

10/05/12 3:08:58 PM#44

For me FTP is killing the games. I refuse to play them. I want my game devs to take the 15$ a month and focus on good and fun games. I don't want the game design to focus around maximizing profit. For every 1$ potion that will speed up leveling by x% they made the design decision to make leveling slower, for each 10$ mount that increases traveling speed by y% they decided to make it slower for normal players and for each cool 5$ outfit they decided to but in crap ones for standard player. 

Although not an MMO Diablo3 was the best example how game design driven by microtransactions gets completly nuts. No matter what the Blizzard devs say, you could see and feel it every time you play. Don't find anything for your class? buy items. What, you  don't get enough money because everything you find is just crap, use your credit card. What you die too often because you did not get good items, wait we increase the repair cost to "motivate you... (... to buy gold with real money)". 

  GrumpyMel2

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/24/09
Posts: 1789

10/05/12 3:20:19 PM#45

@itsneo,

 

No offense, but you do get the point of an EDITORIAL, don't you?

What the writer should inherently be taken as OPINION and not FACT due to that categorization alone.

EDITORIAL = "The following is just the writers subjective opinion"

It's cool if you disagree with him, but I don't see how you can reasonably take him for task for presenting an opinion in a format that is explicitly labeled as opinion?

 

  Denambren

Advanced Member

Joined: 1/03/08
Posts: 295

10/05/12 3:32:20 PM#46

Um.. the article title says this was going to be a F2P analysis when it instead turned out to be a history lesson on DLC and expansion packs. I mean I understand the article may eventually get to the F2P core, but then the title of the article should have been something like "The history of profiteering from video games" or "The evolving payment model of video games".

 

I was really looking forward to reading about the F2P trend and its impact on the market.

 

  GrumpyMel2

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/24/09
Posts: 1789

10/05/12 3:34:32 PM#47

@Superman0X,

 

I've been around since the early Online Service Days (Genie, Prodigy, Compu-Serve) myself. I remember the $ per minute charges. I don't think you could really classify ANY of the games on those as F2P, as even if they weren't premium fee games, the cost of playing them was still rolled into the cost of the service itself.

If you are counting the early MUDS/MUSH's on the .Net, those really wouldn't count as F2P either as those were mostly NON-COMMERCIAL games...there is a HUGE difference between something offered as NON-COMMERCIAL and F2P.

Respectfully, F2P/P2P has nothing to do with whether there is a charge for the client (thick or thin) itself. Many P2P games distribute thier clients for free...it's about whether there is a minimum ACCESS CHARGE to play the game.

There may have been some older examples of F2P games in the West, but it really hasn't been until the last few years that the model became mainstream.

 

  evolver1972

Novice Member

Joined: 3/18/11
Posts: 1126

What is "real"? How do you define "real"?

10/05/12 3:59:00 PM#48
Originally posted by GrumpyMel2
Originally posted by evolver1972
Originally posted by Yakamomoto

"F2P" is mostly a scam. (same goes for "B2P" with cash shop)

If you read "FREE" on the internet, something smells fishy.

I prefer the good old honest subscription model.

 

Honest subscription model.  That's funny.  Considering the costs of running a game are basically miniscule your honest sub model goes to one of two things:  Marketing and Profit.

 

And with the right CS, B2P is not a scam.  To me, that is the most honest and fair way to run a game.  You buy the game (just like every other game), and you don't have to spend another dime to play if you don't want to.  How is that a scam?

 

I also think that F2P, if done correctly, can also not be a scam, although I do admit that model leaves much more opportunity for scamming.

 

I personally think LotRO's F2P version was just fine.  I didn't feel cheated, or pressured to spend any money at all.

I'm not sure where you got the impression that costs for running an online service (which is what MMO's basicaly are) are "miniscule" but I can assure you they are not. I just got done putting together the yearly budget for Operations of my companies online services (and no we are not an MMO, we're in business services) which doesn't even include customer service/tech support and I can assure you it counts for a rather significant chunk of our gross revenue....much larger then either marketing budget or proffits. MMO's can get by with a bit cheaper as they don't have to provide quite as high a level of service....but by no means is their operating costs miniscule..... unless you think it's acceptable to run your game out of someones garage.

Subscriptions ARE "honest" (or at least WERE before cash shops)  in the sense that you know up front exactly what it will cost you to play the FULL game up front each month. I wouldn't neccesarly describe F2P as "dishonest", but a little bit more like "hidden fee's" based services. It's not until you actualy start playing until you learn how much it will actualy cost you to play the game at a level you are comfortable with...and this can change drasticaly as you progress...or even day to day as the Dev's tinker with items and prices in the cash shop.

If you look at earnings reports for MMO companies, you will see that the costs of maintaining an MMO are relatively cheap, compared to the overall costs associated with making and developing an MMO.  Developing an MMO is where the majority of the cost comes in.

 

It used to be that the server costs, bandwidth, etc. cost a lot of the budget money, but that's just not true anymore and it certainly doesn't cost so much that companies still need to charge $15/month for it.  That is how games like GW1 and GW2 are able to make it.  GW1 has been running almost purely on box sales of the game and expansion for 7 years (there is minor income from its CS, but not a significant amount).  GW2 is using basically the same system.  And I'm sure Anet isn't banking on the idea that the CS will cover all of their development costs over the next 7 years.  That's why you are charged for the box price.  It recoups their development costs, and allows them to continue to maintain the game, which includes adding content, maintaining servers and bandwidth, and fixing bugs.

 

And are you going to tell me that the costs of maintaining a game are the same as they were in 2004?  I highly doubt that, especially when it comes to hardware.  That's why the $15/month isn't so great anymore.  You are paying them to play only one game and much of that money you're paying them goes to profit and marketing.

 

I'll take B2P any day over that.  Even with a CS.  I get to decide where my money goes then.  Rather than feeling that I'm stuck in a game I'd rather not play because I have so much invested in it.  And with B2P, I do know exactly how much I have to pay to get the full game:  A one time fee of $60.

You want me to pay to play a game I already paid for???

Be afraid.....The dragons are HERE!

  Scot

Elite Member

Joined: 10/10/03
Posts: 5095

10/05/12 4:25:22 PM#49

I have been against F2P from the start, but it is only one of a lethal cocktail of factors that have changed the gaming industry forever.

I will go futher, MMO's as we knew them are dead, solo games as we new them are dying out. It suits profit that all games meet in the middle, not truely a MMO any more or a solo game. In five to seven years time I am not sure we will be able to tell the differance between "MMO's" and "solo" games. Every game will be online, every game will have a multiplayer option but you will be able to play it solo. Players will be linked by achievements and Facebook style social media, not by interaction in game. Guilds will exist first and foremost in a social media format and only secondly in game. You, the real person will be linked as a real person to all the games you play.

Some of this sounds good, but then streamlined questing sounded good in WoW and now you don't need to read to go on a quest. Dropping harsh death penalities sounded good, but now there are no penalites. The changes start of better, but give it a couple of years and the changes are exagerated until the gameplay is ruined.

MMO's cannot hold on to MMO players, it is not rocket science why. They are not just being played by MMO gamers any more, they are being played by solo players who fancy playing a MMO for a couple of months. The MMO players hang on after two months for a few months more but they are a faction of the playerbase.

  GrumpyMel2

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/24/09
Posts: 1789

10/05/12 4:45:38 PM#50
Originally posted by evolver1972
Originally posted by GrumpyMel2
Originally posted by evolver1972
Originally posted by Yakamomoto

"F2P" is mostly a scam. (same goes for "B2P" with cash shop)

If you read "FREE" on the internet, something smells fishy.

I prefer the good old honest subscription model.

 

Honest subscription model.  That's funny.  Considering the costs of running a game are basically miniscule your honest sub model goes to one of two things:  Marketing and Profit.

 

And with the right CS, B2P is not a scam.  To me, that is the most honest and fair way to run a game.  You buy the game (just like every other game), and you don't have to spend another dime to play if you don't want to.  How is that a scam?

 

I also think that F2P, if done correctly, can also not be a scam, although I do admit that model leaves much more opportunity for scamming.

 

I personally think LotRO's F2P version was just fine.  I didn't feel cheated, or pressured to spend any money at all.

I'm not sure where you got the impression that costs for running an online service (which is what MMO's basicaly are) are "miniscule" but I can assure you they are not. I just got done putting together the yearly budget for Operations of my companies online services (and no we are not an MMO, we're in business services) which doesn't even include customer service/tech support and I can assure you it counts for a rather significant chunk of our gross revenue....much larger then either marketing budget or proffits. MMO's can get by with a bit cheaper as they don't have to provide quite as high a level of service....but by no means is their operating costs miniscule..... unless you think it's acceptable to run your game out of someones garage.

Subscriptions ARE "honest" (or at least WERE before cash shops)  in the sense that you know up front exactly what it will cost you to play the FULL game up front each month. I wouldn't neccesarly describe F2P as "dishonest", but a little bit more like "hidden fee's" based services. It's not until you actualy start playing until you learn how much it will actualy cost you to play the game at a level you are comfortable with...and this can change drasticaly as you progress...or even day to day as the Dev's tinker with items and prices in the cash shop.

If you look at earnings reports for MMO companies, you will see that the costs of maintaining an MMO are relatively cheap, compared to the overall costs associated with making and developing an MMO.  Developing an MMO is where the majority of the cost comes in.

 

It used to be that the server costs, bandwidth, etc. cost a lot of the budget money, but that's just not true anymore and it certainly doesn't cost so much that companies still need to charge $15/month for it.  That is how games like GW1 and GW2 are able to make it.  GW1 has been running almost purely on box sales of the game and expansion for 7 years (there is minor income from its CS, but not a significant amount).  GW2 is using basically the same system.  And I'm sure Anet isn't banking on the idea that the CS will cover all of their development costs over the next 7 years.  That's why you are charged for the box price.  It recoups their development costs, and allows them to continue to maintain the game, which includes adding content, maintaining servers and bandwidth, and fixing bugs.

 

And are you going to tell me that the costs of maintaining a game are the same as they were in 2004?  I highly doubt that, especially when it comes to hardware.  That's why the $15/month isn't so great anymore.  You are paying them to play only one game and much of that money you're paying them goes to profit and marketing.

 

I'll take B2P any day over that.  Even with a CS.  I get to decide where my money goes then.  Rather than feeling that I'm stuck in a game I'd rather not play because I have so much invested in it.  And with B2P, I do know exactly how much I have to pay to get the full game:  A one time fee of $60.

Yes, the costs of hosting are not that drasticaly different then they were 8 years ago. It's NOT the hardware....that shows me that you really aren't all that informed on the subject..... it's the costs of running the DATA CENTER....some of the costs associated with that have gone down but others (power, staffing, cooling, construction, property taxes) have gone UP SIGNIFICANTLY.  Generaly speaking costs for rack space in a quality data center remain pretty close to what they were 8 years ago. You MAY be able to reduce that somewhat if you can offload some of your processing to cloud services (not a bad idea given the spike demand nature of MMO's) but whether you can actualy do that depends upon your application archectecture and to what degree your application is dependant on responsiveness....cloud services introduce thier own bit of latency into an application.

That's not even counting the other big driver of operating costs....your own CS/Tech Support staff.

Purchasing the HW is not the issue...it's OPERATING IT in a reliable/secure environment.

If I want to run out of someones garage....yeah, I can do that dirt cheap.

 

  BizkitNL

Old School

Joined: 12/29/02
Posts: 2271

"Free to play, pay to win""

10/05/12 4:52:57 PM#51

Hm. I can quite easilly prove a lot of people here wrong simply by mentioning League of Legends.

No pay to win, but pay for some pretty damn awesome skins for your heroes. THAT is how it should be done. Not literally though, but you get the idea.

Feel like trying Planetside 2? Get a headstart with the starter kit!

  Sentime

Apprentice Member

Joined: 5/10/06
Posts: 277

10/05/12 5:05:15 PM#52
MMO devs made their own graves with Wow clones long before F2P.
  Ridelynn

Elite Member

Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3306

10/05/12 5:29:53 PM#53

MMOs have been largly immune to piracy.

Sure, there is the box sale, but what you are really buying is the account that grants you access to the server, or the license to upgrade your account. The box is just something physical to have to scan at the cash register.

That's the "beauty" of an MMO - to be Massively Multiplayer, you need to be online and connected to the server. Without that connection to a server, the game is pretty meaningless.

So with MMOs you aren't pirating anything, you have licensed accounts, and those are guaranteed to be one to one (one purchase to one user). Even if that account gets traded or sold afterwards (which may or may not be allowed by the EULA) - whereas in typical piracy, you have one copy that gets duplicated onto hundreds/thousands/millions of other computers (and those get seen as lost sales, regardless of if they really are or not)

So I agree with many commenters - piracy has nothing to do with F2P in terms of MMOs. It may have some relevency outside of MMOs, and I'd go one step further to say that maybe the F2P push has been mostly driven by other-than-MMO development (where piracy may be more relevent).
  IG-88

Novice Member

Joined: 8/03/12
Posts: 129

10/05/12 5:34:40 PM#54

As soon as i hear the word "free" i get suspicious.

"Free", implying "something for nothing" is just the wrong word here, and when you hear that word from companies such as SOE or EA, you have to really naive if you think you  will end up spending  LESS money than before to get the same content.

I dont want things for "free". I want to pay a fee that gives the company a reasonable profit, fairly paid devs AND me the right to demand a proper product.

F2P is a hoax and the sooner the players are willing to pay a fair amount to a company that listens to the player base, the better.

  User Deleted
10/05/12 5:38:10 PM#55
Originally posted by BizkitNL

Hm. I can quite easilly prove a lot of people here wrong simply by mentioning League of Legends.

No pay to win, but pay for some pretty damn awesome skins for your heroes. THAT is how it should be done. Not literally though, but you get the idea.

There is a subtle difference between a battle arena and a persistent world mmorpg. Well there used to be anyway. What works well for one genre doesn't necessarily work well for another.

 

Resticting it to skins only is fantstastic and would work in any game. Trouble is in a battle arena time/grind/disparity is not an issue so it is all vanity items. Whereas in mmos... it is progression based, so the cash shop is more than vanity. A whole different kettle of fish.

  OMGr8573

Hard Core Member

Joined: 5/29/07
Posts: 96

10/05/12 5:47:36 PM#56
He blames Sims for DLC... I don't. DLC didn't seem to get BIG till after Xbox 360 & PS3 started doing it. After that it seemed like every game console, PC, mmo's, etc had to do some type of DLC.
  evolver1972

Novice Member

Joined: 3/18/11
Posts: 1126

What is "real"? How do you define "real"?

10/05/12 5:51:53 PM#57
Originally posted by GrumpyMel2
Originally posted by evolver1972
Originally posted by GrumpyMel2
Originally posted by evolver1972
Originally posted by Yakamomoto

"F2P" is mostly a scam. (same goes for "B2P" with cash shop)

If you read "FREE" on the internet, something smells fishy.

I prefer the good old honest subscription model.

 

Honest subscription model.  That's funny.  Considering the costs of running a game are basically miniscule your honest sub model goes to one of two things:  Marketing and Profit.

 

And with the right CS, B2P is not a scam.  To me, that is the most honest and fair way to run a game.  You buy the game (just like every other game), and you don't have to spend another dime to play if you don't want to.  How is that a scam?

 

I also think that F2P, if done correctly, can also not be a scam, although I do admit that model leaves much more opportunity for scamming.

 

I personally think LotRO's F2P version was just fine.  I didn't feel cheated, or pressured to spend any money at all.

I'm not sure where you got the impression that costs for running an online service (which is what MMO's basicaly are) are "miniscule" but I can assure you they are not. I just got done putting together the yearly budget for Operations of my companies online services (and no we are not an MMO, we're in business services) which doesn't even include customer service/tech support and I can assure you it counts for a rather significant chunk of our gross revenue....much larger then either marketing budget or proffits. MMO's can get by with a bit cheaper as they don't have to provide quite as high a level of service....but by no means is their operating costs miniscule..... unless you think it's acceptable to run your game out of someones garage.

Subscriptions ARE "honest" (or at least WERE before cash shops)  in the sense that you know up front exactly what it will cost you to play the FULL game up front each month. I wouldn't neccesarly describe F2P as "dishonest", but a little bit more like "hidden fee's" based services. It's not until you actualy start playing until you learn how much it will actualy cost you to play the game at a level you are comfortable with...and this can change drasticaly as you progress...or even day to day as the Dev's tinker with items and prices in the cash shop.

If you look at earnings reports for MMO companies, you will see that the costs of maintaining an MMO are relatively cheap, compared to the overall costs associated with making and developing an MMO.  Developing an MMO is where the majority of the cost comes in.

 

It used to be that the server costs, bandwidth, etc. cost a lot of the budget money, but that's just not true anymore and it certainly doesn't cost so much that companies still need to charge $15/month for it.  That is how games like GW1 and GW2 are able to make it.  GW1 has been running almost purely on box sales of the game and expansion for 7 years (there is minor income from its CS, but not a significant amount).  GW2 is using basically the same system.  And I'm sure Anet isn't banking on the idea that the CS will cover all of their development costs over the next 7 years.  That's why you are charged for the box price.  It recoups their development costs, and allows them to continue to maintain the game, which includes adding content, maintaining servers and bandwidth, and fixing bugs.

 

And are you going to tell me that the costs of maintaining a game are the same as they were in 2004?  I highly doubt that, especially when it comes to hardware.  That's why the $15/month isn't so great anymore.  You are paying them to play only one game and much of that money you're paying them goes to profit and marketing.

 

I'll take B2P any day over that.  Even with a CS.  I get to decide where my money goes then.  Rather than feeling that I'm stuck in a game I'd rather not play because I have so much invested in it.  And with B2P, I do know exactly how much I have to pay to get the full game:  A one time fee of $60.

Yes, the costs of hosting are not that drasticaly different then they were 8 years ago. It's NOT the hardware....that shows me that you really aren't all that informed on the subject..... it's the costs of running the DATA CENTER....some of the costs associated with that have gone down but others (power, staffing, cooling, construction, property taxes) have gone UP SIGNIFICANTLY.  Generaly speaking costs for rack space in a quality data center remain pretty close to what they were 8 years ago. You MAY be able to reduce that somewhat if you can offload some of your processing to cloud services (not a bad idea given the spike demand nature of MMO's) but whether you can actualy do that depends upon your application archectecture and to what degree your application is dependant on responsiveness....cloud services introduce thier own bit of latency into an application.

That's not even counting the other big driver of operating costs....your own CS/Tech Support staff.

Purchasing the HW is not the issue...it's OPERATING IT in a reliable/secure environment.

If I want to run out of someones garage....yeah, I can do that dirt cheap.

 

Then explain to me how some MMOs can run a quality game without charging a monthly fee.  Surely their costs for maintaining the game are roughly the same as those who charge the fee.

 

Sorry, but I don't buy the argument that it costs anywhere near $15/month per user to run a game after it's been released.  Not when there are so many games out there that don't get that much in income but still manage to keep the game running.

You want me to pay to play a game I already paid for???

Be afraid.....The dragons are HERE!

  ArChWind

Apprentice Member

Joined: 3/19/11
Posts: 482

10/05/12 6:14:40 PM#58
The irony of this artical is the advert in the very middle.
 
FREE to PLAY!

http://www.reddit.com/r/KingdomsofWhren

  Skuall

Hard Core Member

Joined: 4/20/05
Posts: 754

10/05/12 6:27:59 PM#59
Originally posted by erictlewis
Originally posted by superniceguy

It is not Free to Play that is killing gaming, it is the way it is being implemented that is killing the games.

The only things that should be purchaseable in the shop are content packs, which unlock loads more quest to do, which get you specail items. But the way they do it is put these items in the store so you can get them without playing the game.

eg LOTRO - They bring in mounts in the store which last for a limited period of time. If I see one expiring within 24 hours I will not have time to level up a character to 20, and get the Riding Skill, so what do I do, play until level 5, buy the Riding Skill, buy the Mount, and then not play the game.

What they should do, is create content, that you can buy, and then play whenever with no time limit, when you reach the appropriate level, and get that mount.

Alternatively the items could be added to the crafting professions, and be able to be crafted.

The other things that are OK being purchased, are extra inventory slots (although in SWTOR these can be increased with in game credits), charcter transfers, renames, extra char slots etc

Basically devs are being lazy putting in items in the shop when best played to get instead of bought with real money to get. Even XP boosts can be acquired by playing game or within crafting items.

Free to play is mostly stealing gameplay, because it gets companies more money when people can buy it without having to play the game, in effect it is cheating.

Seriously I could not have put it better.  I agree it is the way free to play is being implemented, there are several games eq2, lotro and so forth.

What we wind  up with is the dev staff is to bussy doing re-skins of the same product over and over, meanwhile we dying to have real playable content.  I get so angry when I see soe on their facebook going hey take a look at the latest item we are offering in our item shop.   Argggg,   I don't want items I want content.

Oh well I totally agree with what you have said.

cant agree more , its frustrating how p2p games go to f2p and fall below what i call "standards" , in eq2 no legendary gear or fabled ....and the tokens to even able to wear.....oh well....go f2p full or dont go....

 

Lotro however did a good job , u can gain currency while playing (farming hard ><) but at least i was able to buy Moria expansion , after playing for a while ! free !

 

  Grinnz

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/24/10
Posts: 273

I just ate your cat!

10/05/12 6:29:42 PM#60
Please do not put Part Two up of this.....it's simply wrong.....

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