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News & Features Discussion  » [Column] Star Wars: The Old Republic: The Slippery Slope of SWTOR’s Cartel Market

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80 posts found
  BillMurphy

Managing Editor

Joined: 7/28/06
Posts: 1658

 
OP  12/12/12 5:44:06 AM#1

Is BioWare on a slippery slope with their Cartel Market in Star Wars: The Old Republic? We weigh in with our thoughts in this week's SWTOR column.

In Game Update 1.6 in particular, the Cartel Market now features Level 50 ship equipment that when purchased will allow players to essentially jump right into the new Heroic space missions. It’s true, the Market has offered gear for some time now, but the gear on offer is either adaptive gear without any stats, or gear with pre-endgame stats (capping currently at Level 41). Introducing level 50 gear, even if it is just for ships, goes further down that slippery slope. I don’t want to say this is out-and-out ‘Pay to Win’, but this is a concerning trend to say the least.

Read more of Michael Bitton's Star Wars: The Old Republic: The Slippery Slope of SWTOR’s Cartel Market.

  wildtalent

Novice Member

Joined: 4/04/07
Posts: 381

12/12/12 12:16:17 PM#2

I'm glad for the F2P conversion.  Had it not happened I wouldn't have given the game the second chance it deserved.  However,  I think the things that are being sold piece meal are a bit ridiculous.  Action bars?  Really?  

The addition of endgame level equipment is regrettable as well.  I think what is happening here is that while Bioware knows how to make a great game with an amazing story...even one year in...they still don't understand how to run an MMO.

 

That being said, the game is fun but Bioware need to take a closer look at other game's F2P model and make some changes.

  aslan132

Elite Member

Joined: 10/01/07
Posts: 287

12/12/12 12:22:39 PM#3

Im in total agreement. I have fun in F2P games, but usually understand that I wont ever have all the coolest looking stuff, because i wont pay for them. I dont mind a cash shop in free games, in fact i actually encourage them. They do provide a needed financial gain to the company while providing convenience and appearance items to players.

 

Most cash shops know convenience is a way to save time, but not bypass content. Game developers still want you to play through the content they design, but allow you to do so at an accelerated pace. They dont sell max level characters, or levels at all, but instead give you xp potions. They dont sell raid gear, or max stat gear, they give you level appropriate gear with slightly better stats to help a players level quicker, but then cut it off before level cap, so youre still working for end game items. Most will also sell resources from every tier EXCEPT the max, to allow players to work on crafting UPTO the final tier, and still leave the most current content something to be worked for by the player.

 

What a cash shop shouldnt do, is completely bypass progression altogether, or negatively impact a player driven economy. Sadly, in this case, it does both. Anyone who thinks this trend wont only continue, but grow worse with time, is naive or delusional. 

  Dahkot72

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/16/11
Posts: 274

12/12/12 12:27:37 PM#4
And the hits just keep coming. It's almost as if EA is truly experimenting with doing the worst decision on every possible move in this game.
Can anyone truly think that buying character level 50 gear is not next ?
Pure comedy gold is what the SWTOR saga has been.

I never thought anything could beat the vanguard mcquaid meltdown crying on FoH - parking lot firing drama.

EA proved me wrong.
  apocoluster

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/15/07
Posts: 1290

\m/,

12/12/12 12:32:47 PM#5

 Well if they are testing the waters for lvl 50 character gear more power to 'em....Im using my credits to farm the AH for lvl50 gear just to blow my money..the 350k credit cap is rediculously easy to get too...like 2 days of dailies...Is my AH farming P2W?

 I think peeps need to quit sweating what other peeps do with their money.

No matter how cynical you become, its never enough to keep up - Lily Tomlin

  Esquire1980

Novice Member

Joined: 8/12/07
Posts: 529

12/12/12 12:44:39 PM#6

Nothing new here.  This is the way it all started in STO via Cryptic and their ships in the store.  1st, 1 small P2W item (excel), then more bigger and better, now the entire game is P2W, and based solely around the store.  Both PVE and PVP gameplay.  PvP is almost non-existant in STO with even developers coming to their game forums stateing; "we could take PVP out of the game and no-one would even notice". 

 

Looks like BioWare is headed down the same path.  Good luck to them.  Looking forward to ESO.

  vgamer

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/27/11
Posts: 129

12/12/12 12:59:58 PM#7
Pay to win and Pay for UI? This game will be very succesful
  Skuz

Novice Member

Joined: 12/25/08
Posts: 1038

"If you can''t laugh at yourself there''s always someone around to show you how it''s done!"

12/12/12 1:05:29 PM#8

I agree on the "ship upgrades" being in the cartel market is a bad move, I was rather hopeful it would have added some more patterns to cybertechs (who are actually now probably the most-used crew skill due to the ability to create such a big chunk of high-end item mods).

All of the crew skills need updating, I proposed changes to more evenly distribute particular items so that "as a percentage of a total gear set for a cvharacter each crew skill was equally represented" but never expected those to be adopted - BioWare have their own set of criteria but I strongly disagree with how the end results are implimented in game as the crew skills have no relative balance to each other.

  Cogohi

Novice Member

Joined: 12/07/12
Posts: 4

12/12/12 1:08:06 PM#9

On the up side it looks like 1.6 didn't come with any critical gameplay bugs like 1.4 and 1.5 did... So, win?

 

I agree with the sentiments about the ship parts in the CM.  The "oh that's for the single-player space missions, who cares about that?"  There are credible rumors that they'll be reworked.  That gives EA the freedom to run market experiments with the current one.  If it fails, no big deal, the new shiny will wipe the slate clean.  God help us if it works because then it will spread.

 

Thanks to the game press, EA backpedaled on some of the draconian F2P restrictions.  We need more articles jumping on this latest move before it trully becomes Pay to Win.

 
  FrodoFragins

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/29/10
Posts: 2757

12/12/12 1:16:33 PM#10
Bunch of idiots running this game.  They are more blatent than Turbine (who started off fine and slowly added P2W items).
  hockey98

Novice Member

Joined: 12/06/12
Posts: 37

12/12/12 1:20:17 PM#11
Originally posted by FrodoFragins
Bunch of idiots running this game.  They are more blatent than Turbine (who started off fine and slowly added P2W items).

 

Swtor and lotro are very far from p2w. Oh wow you can buy a nice ship upgrade for a single player aspect of the game. How does that make it p2w? In lotro you can buy crystals, relics for your lendary items, and upgrade your traits, again if you had any knowledge of lotro you would know that doesnt make it p2w.
  bobdole1979

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/05/09
Posts: 214

12/12/12 1:23:45 PM#12

ok so about a week ago people were complaing about the Space Missions saying Bioware was wasting time making them and no one plays them. 

 

However now people are saying they are Pay 2 Win (Ignoring the fact that you can earn all the ship upgrades for SINGLE PLAYER PVE)  and that it ruins the game.

It's very clear they are just trying to lower the treadmill.  Allowing new players to actually try the content.  This is why at level 50 now you get 99 tiionnesse commenidations and recruit PVP gear.  it's why they got rid of Battlemaster gear.   The content has been out for a long time and they want everyone to try it.

 

Are you honestly saying that grinding out the Space Mission dailies is the fastest way to get BH coms???   With out doing the Space missions you could be full BH gear ijn a week by joining a good guild. 

If you go to the SWTOR forums now you would think that everyone in the game plays the Space Missions and they are more popular and competitive then PVP.

 

 

 

Sorry you don't like the snow speeder mount but it's just a cosmetic item.  You don't have to buy it.  So what it's ugly find me a MMO that doesn't have some ugly mounts.  

  barezz

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/18/07
Posts: 138

12/12/12 1:25:16 PM#13

I think that EA and Bioware will do whatever they can to make money regardless of what it does to the game.

Long term vision is obviously not one of their strengths.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

12/12/12 1:25:55 PM#14

I find it increasingly hard to want to play, since I realize that everything I work for can just be purchased by someone with excess disposable income.

 

It takes away from the thrill of actually working for goals, and showing off those rewards.  WoW would not have been very popular if someone could just purchase max reputation, or purchase every possible in-game mount with one money transaction, for instance.

 

As mentioned earlier, selling stuff to those leveling to help their character mature faster is largely accepted in the MMORPG community.  Go and sell end-game content so people can have bragging rights for rewards they didn't earn, and I'm not going to be very interested in your game (EA).

 

It's a slippery slope, and EA is already losing their footing.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  hockey98

Novice Member

Joined: 12/06/12
Posts: 37

12/12/12 1:35:44 PM#15
Coming on a forum and providing facts is acceptable, coming on a forum and not telling the truth makes you look like a fool. The ship item is not end-game content. You cannot buy anything in the cartel market that is end-game. There isnt Rakata gear or Black Hole gear or anything close to it in the cartel market. Those who are saying there is, are ignorant and wrong. These people should be banned for trolling but we know mmorpg wont do that.
  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

12/12/12 1:46:07 PM#16
Originally posted by hockey98
Coming on a forum and providing facts is acceptable, coming on a forum and not telling the truth makes you look like a fool. The ship item is not end-game content. You cannot buy anything in the cartel market that is end-game. There isnt Rakata gear or Black Hole gear or anything close to it in the cartel market. Those who are saying there are ignorant and wrong. These people should be banned for trolling but we know mmorpg wont do that.

The ship upgrades for sale are of the highest rank obtainable in-game.  Sounds end-game to me, whether it's a single player mission or not.  Bragging rights won't go to those who earn them, but rather to those who spend real money.

 

There is also raid quality character gear from the Cartel gambling packs (lv 50 purples).  Very powerful max character level stuff too with procs.  Sounds pretty end-game to me.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  hockey98

Novice Member

Joined: 12/06/12
Posts: 37

12/12/12 2:00:06 PM#17
Originally posted by Karteli
Originally posted by hockey98
Coming on a forum and providing facts is acceptable, coming on a forum and not telling the truth makes you look like a fool. The ship item is not end-game content. You cannot buy anything in the cartel market that is end-game. There isnt Rakata gear or Black Hole gear or anything close to it in the cartel market. Those who are saying there are ignorant and wrong. These people should be banned for trolling but we know mmorpg wont do that.

The ship upgrades for sale are of the highest rank obtainable in-game.  Sounds end-game to me, whether it's a single player mission or not.  Bragging rights won't go to those who earn them, but rather to those who spend real money.

 

There is also raid quality character gear from the Cartel gambling packs (lv 50 purples).  Very powerful max character level stuff too with procs.  Sounds pretty end-game to me.

 

Its ok you forgot you were one of the ship missions are single player and should be part of an mmo crew. But now when you think it may benefit your cause its now considered "end game". And its ok you didnt know there are a lot more than just that one piece that go into your ship. As for your other argument if you went into a raid with just pieces you get from the cartel market you would be crushed. So again wrong on the raid gear in the cartel market. "Very powerful max character level stuff" please provide some details on what your talking about here .
  Xstatic912

Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/20/11
Posts: 367

12/12/12 2:05:19 PM#18
I'll say it again, blame Ea they have the final say in all of this..

Eg;
Bioware : let's make this game free do it can increase player base.

EA: What will you charge the f2p players?

Bioware; charge for vanity stuff, etc..

EA: No, there has to be other stuff you charge for so they will feel bombarded with need the to sub..

Bioware: Huh, well I don't think the other choices are cool..

EA: do it if its not cool.. If they want cool let them sub..

I can see Ea point to an extent.. They want the money they paid for the license and some, BUT at some point you have to see your hampering the game that is suppose to bring in the cash..
  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

12/12/12 2:10:29 PM#19
Originally posted by hockey98
Originally posted by Karteli
Originally posted by hockey98
Coming on a forum and providing facts is acceptable, coming on a forum and not telling the truth makes you look like a fool. The ship item is not end-game content. You cannot buy anything in the cartel market that is end-game. There isnt Rakata gear or Black Hole gear or anything close to it in the cartel market. Those who are saying there are ignorant and wrong. These people should be banned for trolling but we know mmorpg wont do that.

The ship upgrades for sale are of the highest rank obtainable in-game.  Sounds end-game to me, whether it's a single player mission or not.  Bragging rights won't go to those who earn them, but rather to those who spend real money.

 

There is also raid quality character gear from the Cartel gambling packs (lv 50 purples).  Very powerful max character level stuff too with procs.  Sounds pretty end-game to me.

 

Its ok you forgot you were one of the ship missions are single player and should be part of an mmo crew. But now when you think it may benefit your cause its now considered "end game". And its ok you didnt know there are a lot more than just that one piece that go into your ship. As for your other argument if you went into a raid with just pieces you get from the cartel market you would be crushed. So again wrong on the raid gear in the cartel market. "Very powerful max character level stuff" please provide some details on what your talking about here .

Selling ship upgrades still cheapens a major "selling point" for this game, regardless of how you justify it.  Selling legacy is just as bad.  Does WoW achievements affect others?  Mostly, NO.  Did WoW ever sell achievements?  NO.  Because it would cheapen the bragging rights of actually obtaining them, even if most only hold value to the individual player.

 

I retract that equipment part for now, because it seems like the powerful purples were removed, as listed in earlier patch notes (I did check).  I saw people get em on YouTube videos though, but I think the cashshop is a waste of good money, and since I won't participate in RMT's, I didn't get any personally.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  defector1968

Novice Member

Joined: 6/16/10
Posts: 400

Real Animal lovers are ONLY the vegetarians

12/12/12 2:18:12 PM#20

space in swtor is a mini game, there is no competition since nobody but you can envolve in any space mission.

space rewards are vanity cloths and raw materials for crafting for those that dont or cant do so much raid to get them.

so its pointless to think that the space is end game.

on the other hand, anything that has to do with UI and storage is a bit p2w

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