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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Does the Free to Play model work?

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137 posts found
  Psion33

Novice Member

Joined: 8/06/13
Posts: 257

10/31/13 12:52:11 PM#21
Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
Originally posted by Psion33
Originally posted by Ender4

Subscription games have always been a ripoff. You pay $15 a month for almost no new content for a year and then get hit up for a full priced expansion. It was only a matter of time before people gave up on this theory. If games actually had a lot of quality content added monthly it would make sense, but they simply do not do that.

 

So, by your logic, your $70 should be able to pay for the thousands or millions used in production of said game/expansion?

 

That logic is just as flawed as workers wanting to increase restrictions to force businesses to stay here to meet the worker's needs.

Well as various b2p have shown us.  Yes I do expect them to be able to pay their costs and game upkeep with a one time cost.  When they put out an expasion I'll buy that and they can recoup their money.

It has been shown several times now that there is no no need for the sub.

the only reason they want a sub, is the same as f2p devs want it, is the same as the b2p devs what that - that being the devs figure they will make the most money with whatever model they choose.  Thats it folks, nothing more. 

 

I highly highly doubt that businesses from here on out can survive on a B2P model. GW did it primarily because it was a niche market. Now everyone's had their fill of B2P and those numbers GW recieved (probably better to relate market percentages) can be no way attained anymore by other B2P games.  The allure of buy once and never open your pocketbook may be an easier "stepping stone" for people that have to watch the pennies leaving their pockets but ... you realize how many millions of subs it would take to A) cover development costs and B) to cover a skeleton crew of devs and associated monthly bills?

 

I got TSW for $9.99 on steam. I probably paid for what, maybe 15 minutes of dev time on my sole purchase? I only played the game for about 3 weeks before uninstalling so I never went into the shop. 

  SpottyGekko

Elite Member

Joined: 9/26/04
Posts: 2756

10/31/13 1:10:49 PM#22

F2P obviously "works", otherwise there would be no F2P games around ! 

 

But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games. Sure, LOTRO made much more money after it went F2P. But before it was forced to go F2P to survive, the subscribing playerbase had dwindled significantly from it's first and second year levels.

 

Why do you think new AAA games keep on launching with a sub model (FFXIV, ESO, Wildstar) ? Surely, if "F2P makes more money than subscriptions", launching as F2P is a no-brainer. Even B2P with a Cash Shop (GW2) is an "obvious" better earning model.

 

It appears that all these game devs and publishing companies simply cannot see the obvious truth that we can see. Either that, or the truth is not as "obvious" as it appears to be in these forums.

 

If "F2P made more money than subscriptions", WoW would have converted to F2P years ago. If you believe for a second that Bobby Kotick isn't 100% focused on making the most money possible, then there's a bridge I'd like to sell you...

  VengeSunsoar

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/10/04
Posts: 4717

Be Brief, Be Bright... Be Gone.

10/31/13 1:15:45 PM#23
Originally posted by Psion33
Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
Originally posted by Psion33
Originally posted by Ender4

Subscription games have always been a ripoff. You pay $15 a month for almost no new content for a year and then get hit up for a full priced expansion. It was only a matter of time before people gave up on this theory. If games actually had a lot of quality content added monthly it would make sense, but they simply do not do that.

 

So, by your logic, your $70 should be able to pay for the thousands or millions used in production of said game/expansion?

 

That logic is just as flawed as workers wanting to increase restrictions to force businesses to stay here to meet the worker's needs.

Well as various b2p have shown us.  Yes I do expect them to be able to pay their costs and game upkeep with a one time cost.  When they put out an expasion I'll buy that and they can recoup their money.

It has been shown several times now that there is no no need for the sub.

the only reason they want a sub, is the same as f2p devs want it, is the same as the b2p devs what that - that being the devs figure they will make the most money with whatever model they choose.  Thats it folks, nothing more. 

 

I highly highly doubt that businesses from here on out can survive on a B2P model. GW did it primarily because it was a niche market. Now everyone's had their fill of B2P and those numbers GW recieved (probably better to relate market percentages) can be no way attained anymore by other B2P games.  The allure of buy once and never open your pocketbook may be an easier "stepping stone" for people that have to watch the pennies leaving their pockets but ... you realize how many millions of subs it would take to A) cover development costs and B) to cover a skeleton crew of devs and associated monthly bills?

 

I got TSW for $9.99 on steam. I probably paid for what, maybe 15 minutes of dev time on my sole purchase? I only played the game for about 3 weeks before uninstalling so I never went into the shop. 

On B2P alone, I don't expect it and it never really was.  B2p exists with a cash shop. 

Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  VengeSunsoar

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/10/04
Posts: 4717

Be Brief, Be Bright... Be Gone.

10/31/13 1:21:52 PM#24
Originally posted by SpottyGekko

F2P obviously "works", otherwise there would be no F2P games around ! 

 

But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games. Sure, LOTRO made much more money after it went F2P. But before it was forced to go F2P to survive, the subscribing playerbase had dwindled significantly from it's first and second year levels.

 

Why do you think new AAA games keep on launching with a sub model (FFXIV, ESO, Wildstar) ? Surely, if "F2P makes more money than subscriptions", launching as F2P is a no-brainer. Even B2P with a Cash Shop (GW2) is an "obvious" better earning model.

 

It appears that all these game devs and publishing companies simply cannot see the obvious truth that we can see. Either that, or the truth is not as "obvious" as it appears to be in these forums.

 

If "F2P made more money than subscriptions", WoW would have converted to F2P years ago. If you believe for a second that Bobby Kotick isn't 100% focused on making the most money possible, then there's a bridge I'd like to sell you...

Naw. Lotro hada stable playerbase, it went ftp to make even more.  Same with EQ and EQ2.

All AAA keep on launching with a sub model at first because they know they will sell 1-2 million boxes.  Who wouldn't choose a sub model for that.  They also know they will not maintain that (because only 2 or 3 ever have) and so when it drops below a certain point they will make more with a f2p. 

F2p has 3 advantages.

1.  customers - can try out a huge portion, in many of the new f2p, most of the game completely free.

2.  Customrs again - they get to choose how much and where to spend their money.  Customers like this is.

3.  A cash shop (yes just saying cs and not limiting it to f2p, b2p or p2p cause they all have them now) allows the devs to get past the $15 dollar a month per person (ARPU for the ftp).  They have always been limited in the amount they can get because of that.  Games were increasing in costs to make and yet the price wasn't changing, they had to find a way to get past that limitation.  they did, we have Cash Shops and by and large the market has overwhelmingly accepted them.

Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  CrazKanuk

Elite Member

Joined: 10/06/09
Posts: 845

10/31/13 1:29:16 PM#25
First of all, I think that the example of Candy Crush, or any other mobile game like that,  isn't a fair comparison being grouped into "F2P". These games ARE the epitome of Pay to Win. You can pay to get these really awesome warriors to help you in this game, RIGHT NOW. Or you can wait 5 hours. 

 

This type of lack of differentiation between F2P and P2W is what infuriates me. Games like Clash of Clans makes $2.4 Million per day. PER DAY!!! In the game you are literally only purchasing power ups, more powerful units, or instantly building buildings, etc. The Simpson's Tapped Out has apparently made $100 million now. Same type of deal. It's pay or wait games. You're paying for progression. 

 

These are types of games where the person with the most money will always win. These are games where you literally cannot compete with someone who pays money. They can simply get "stuff" that you cannot as a free player. 

 

That's why I constantly say that 99% of F2P MMOs are NOT P2W.

 

So does it work? Well, yes, obviously at $2.4 million per day, it does work. Why doesn't it work as often in F2P? Quite simply, because MMO developers are living at the tip of a double-edged sword. If they go P2W like a mobile app, you will have a crowd of whales, but your overall community size would likely be smaller. The other route of offering "cosmetic" items only creates a larger community, but with few people who actually buy anything. 

 

That said, it still rakes in huge bucks, but on a per-game basis, I think that the most money made per-game would be through a sucecssful subscription model. 

Crazkanuk

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  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11915

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

10/31/13 1:33:52 PM#26
Originally posted by Psion33
Originally posted by Ender4

Subscription games have always been a ripoff. You pay $15 a month for almost no new content for a year and then get hit up for a full priced expansion. It was only a matter of time before people gave up on this theory. If games actually had a lot of quality content added monthly it would make sense, but they simply do not do that. 

So, by your logic, your $70 should be able to pay for the thousands or millions used in production of said game/expansion?

That logic is just as flawed as workers wanting to increase restrictions to force businesses to stay here to meet the worker's needs.

Which are the MMOs that added on new staff solely to create their expansion?

The hyperbole, insults and generalizations of your other posts in this thread lead me to believe this is also based on something you made up to help you justify your emotional stance in all this, but on the off chance it actually is based in reality, I'm curious which MMOs you are basing that on and if you think that's the norm.

  Torvaldr

Elite Member

Joined: 6/10/09
Posts: 5575

10/31/13 1:34:21 PM#27
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by DamonVile
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by NinjaGaz

I have often wondered about this free to play model... why is everybody adopting it? What makes them think it's such a great idea? I could point you to an article where a girl spent over $400 on Candy Crush because of the model and most people know somebody that's spent over £100 on a game.

Is that the target audience, though? The people who can't control themselves, or are spending other peoples money.

You assume people who play free to play games can't control themselves or are spending someone else's money. Abandon the assumptions and bias, stick to facts, and you'll be a lot less puzzled about these things.

Stop telling people that! If ppl didn't have these extreme assumptions and/or bias towards games we'd have nothing to talk about.

In that case, let me share my view on paid expansion packs... :)

Don't tease. Do tell! :p

I think a mind wipe so people could play an mmo like it was their first time again, would be easier to build than a new mmo people here would actually like. - DamonVile

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11915

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

10/31/13 1:37:10 PM#28
Originally posted by SpottyGekko

But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games.

Since you claim it a misconception, I was wondering if you could share the source of your data for that. Yes, WOW works as a sub. Quite a few games do. I'd like to point out that is irrelevant to your claim before you go touting the anomaly.

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11915

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

10/31/13 1:41:24 PM#29
Originally posted by Torvaldr
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by DamonVile
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by NinjaGaz

I have often wondered about this free to play model... why is everybody adopting it? What makes them think it's such a great idea? I could point you to an article where a girl spent over $400 on Candy Crush because of the model and most people know somebody that's spent over £100 on a game.

Is that the target audience, though? The people who can't control themselves, or are spending other peoples money.

You assume people who play free to play games can't control themselves or are spending someone else's money. Abandon the assumptions and bias, stick to facts, and you'll be a lot less puzzled about these things.

Stop telling people that! If ppl didn't have these extreme assumptions and/or bias towards games we'd have nothing to talk about.

In that case, let me share my view on paid expansion packs... :)

Don't tease. Do tell! :p

I'll keep it short, as it's only tangential to the conversation: 

http://themess.com/gamestuff/2011/10/what-if-the-idea-of-paid-expansion-packs-only-showed-up-after-2009/

 

  Novusod

Novice Member

Joined: 5/30/09
Posts: 860

10/31/13 1:43:25 PM#30
Free 2 Play works because it keeps small time games alive. In the days before F2P those games would have been forced to shut down completely or in many cases never made in the first place. Later on companies got greedy and changed even profitable games over to F2P in order to squeeze more money out of the player base. LoTR was probably the first game to go the "greed" route. Freeium where they offer a subscription and have a huge cash shop is really just pure greed.
  VengeSunsoar

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/10/04
Posts: 4717

Be Brief, Be Bright... Be Gone.

10/31/13 1:50:53 PM#31
Originally posted by Novusod
Free 2 Play works because it keeps small time games alive. In the days before F2P those games would have been forced to shut down completely or in many cases never made in the first place. Later on companies got greedy and changed even profitable games over to F2P in order to squeeze more money out of the player base. LoTR was probably the first game to go the "greed" route. Freeium where they offer a subscription and have a huge cash shop is really just pure greed.

Well Freemium is not just sub and a cs. Freemium also gives the option to not pay the sub and just use the cs.  So IMO it is the best model letting me choose I want want to play/pay.

But for everything else I totally agree in principle, not necessarily with the idea that it is greed.  But with the idea that whatever sub model is chosen it is chosen because the devs feel they will make the most money with that model.

Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  DamonVile

Elite Member

Joined: 11/22/05
Posts: 4398

10/31/13 1:57:48 PM#32
Originally posted by SpottyGekko


Why do you think new AAA games keep on launching with a sub model (FFXIV, ESO, Wildstar) ? Surely, if "F2P makes more money than subscriptions", launching as F2P is a no-brainer. Even B2P with a Cash Shop (GW2) is an "obvious" better earning model.

 

It appears that all these game devs and publishing companies simply cannot see the obvious truth that we can see. Either that, or the truth is not as "obvious" as it appears to be in these forums.

 

The answer is pretty simple. They're taking advantage of human nature.

Ever hear of a company called Apple...you know the guys that make billions selling a "new" phone that has features that should have been on the older version but they knew holding them back would get the same people that paid $500 for a IV to pay $500 for a V ? why ?...because it's new and people have to have it now.

Same principle is being used when a new AAA game launches with a box price. They know there is going to be a large enough group of people that have to play the newest game, right now! so why not charge everyone $60 instead of nothing.

And when the game is no longer the new kid on the block and people start to drift off, relaunch the game free to play and every gaming site will be talking about your game again and you get a second coming event free of charge.

People are like cats. When they die, you get a new one.

  Arclan

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 1/29/07
Posts: 1322

"Ideas are worthless. The only currency that holds any weight is the ability and drive to execute."

10/31/13 1:59:32 PM#33


Originally posted by Loktofeit
Abandon the assumptions and bias, stick to facts, and you'll be a lot less puzzled about these things.

Lok, my good man, the F2P model IS puzzling, and intentionally so. A deceptive pricing model that can change any time at the whim of the maker.

P L A N E T S I D E 1 is up !! check PS1 forum for link to current installer.
Luckily, i don't need you to like me to enjoy video games. -nariusseldon.
In F2P I think it's more a case of the game's trying to play the player's. -laserit
video game company layoffs are twice the national average.

  SpottyGekko

Elite Member

Joined: 9/26/04
Posts: 2756

10/31/13 2:04:29 PM#34
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by SpottyGekko

But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games.

Since you claim it a misconception, I was wondering if you could share the source of your data for that. Yes, WOW works as a sub. Quite a few games do. I'd like to point out that is irrelevant to your claim before you go touting the anomaly.

Neither you nor I can produce the figures to back our respective viewpoints. 

 

I base my opinion on the fact that all the AAA MMO's launching in the near future will be subscription based. And trying to imply that they are only doing it to get more box sales is ridiculous. Why would the threat of sub-only access sell MORE boxes than B2P (with Cash Shop) ?

 

So I'm guessing that industry figures show these publishers and game developers that the box sale + sub model makes more money than B2P + Cash Shop.

 

If all the extensive market analysis and in-depth reporting from specialist companies like Newzoo and SuperData Research clearly showed that F2P was the most profitable model, do you REALLY REALLY think all these different games would be ignoring that fact ?

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11915

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

10/31/13 2:12:12 PM#35
Originally posted by SpottyGekko
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by SpottyGekko

But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games.

Since you claim it a misconception, I was wondering if you could share the source of your data for that. Yes, WOW works as a sub. Quite a few games do. I'd like to point out that is irrelevant to your claim before you go touting the anomaly.

Neither you nor I can produce the figures to back our respective viewpoints. 

 

The difference however that I'm not posting that your view is a misconception. 

  VengeSunsoar

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/10/04
Posts: 4717

Be Brief, Be Bright... Be Gone.

10/31/13 2:12:23 PM#36
Originally posted by SpottyGekko
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by SpottyGekko

But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games.

Since you claim it a misconception, I was wondering if you could share the source of your data for that. Yes, WOW works as a sub. Quite a few games do. I'd like to point out that is irrelevant to your claim before you go touting the anomaly.

Neither you nor I can produce the figures to back our respective viewpoints. 

 

I base my opinion on the fact that all the AAA MMO's launching in the near future will be subscription based. And trying to imply that they are only doing it to get more box sales is ridiculous. Why would the threat of sub-only access sell MORE boxes than B2P (with Cash Shop) ?

 

So I'm guessing that industry figures show these publishers and game developers that the box sale + sub model makes more money than B2P + Cash Shop.

 

If all the extensive market analysis and in-depth reporting from specialist companies like Newzoo and SuperData Research clearly showed that F2P was the most profitable model, do you REALLY REALLY think all these different games would be ignoring that fact ?

EQN will be freemium.

And I expect the others (only 2) are p2p at launch to take advantage of the millions sold.  In 6 months to a year when the levels drop to more traditional levels I would expect at least one of the two remaining to be ftp.

Quit worrying about other players in a game and just play.

  Jaedor

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/17/09
Posts: 802

10/31/13 2:13:57 PM#37


Originally posted by SpottyGekko

Originally posted by Loktofeit

Originally posted by SpottyGekko But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games.
Since you claim it a misconception, I was wondering if you could share the source of your data for that. Yes, WOW works as a sub. Quite a few games do. I'd like to point out that is irrelevant to your claim before you go touting the anomaly.
Neither you nor I can produce the figures to back our respective viewpoints. 

 

I base my opinion on the fact that all the AAA MMO's launching in the near future will be subscription based. And trying to imply that they are only doing it to get more box sales is ridiculous. Why would the threat of sub-only access sell MORE boxes than B2P (with Cash Shop) ?

 

So I'm guessing that industry figures show these publishers and game developers that the box sale + sub model makes more money than B2P + Cash Shop.

 

If all the extensive market analysis and in-depth reporting from specialist companies like Newzoo and SuperData Research clearly showed that F2P was the most profitable model, do you REALLY REALLY think all these different games would be ignoring that fact ?



I'd suggest that a launch with box and sub will make X amount of reliable money for Y reliable length of time, which appeals to investors and publishers. At some later date the developer can switch to a F2P model and anticipate Z amounts from an invested pool of players plus A amounts from new players attracted by F2P.

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11915

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

10/31/13 2:15:21 PM#38
Originally posted by Arclan

Originally posted by Loktofeit
Abandon the assumptions and bias, stick to facts, and you'll be a lot less puzzled about these things.

Lok, my good man, the F2P model IS puzzling, and intentionally so. A deceptive pricing model that can change any time at the whim of the maker.

Actually, the points he is making are not about the model, but rather sweeping generalizations about the players. There is nothing puzzling about that. Throughout this thread you have people stating their personal made up biases as facts and in some cases using that to tell others their view is incorrect as a result. 

If there's any deception here, it's by those who are trying to pass off opinion as truth in order to prove they are correct about their assumptions. 

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11915

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, Wildstar, and Combat Arms

10/31/13 2:20:05 PM#39
Originally posted by Jaedor

 


Originally posted by SpottyGekko

Originally posted by Loktofeit

Originally posted by SpottyGekko But it's a common misconception that F2P games make more than sub games.
Since you claim it a misconception, I was wondering if you could share the source of your data for that. Yes, WOW works as a sub. Quite a few games do. I'd like to point out that is irrelevant to your claim before you go touting the anomaly.
Neither you nor I can produce the figures to back our respective viewpoints. 

I base my opinion on the fact that all the AAA MMO's launching in the near future will be subscription based. And trying to imply that they are only doing it to get more box sales is ridiculous. Why would the threat of sub-only access sell MORE boxes than B2P (with Cash Shop) ?

So I'm guessing that industry figures show these publishers and game developers that the box sale + sub model makes more money than B2P + Cash Shop.

If all the extensive market analysis and in-depth reporting from specialist companies like Newzoo and SuperData Research clearly showed that F2P was the most profitable model, do you REALLY REALLY think all these different games would be ignoring that fact ?

I'd suggest that a launch with box and sub will make X amount of reliable money for Y reliable length of time, which appeals to investors and publishers. At some later date the developer can switch to a F2P model and anticipate Z amounts from an invested pool of players plus A amounts from new players attracted by F2P.

Agreed. Also, there is no one model that is universally best. Some games just work better with subscription - either as the sole model or mixed with a F2P option - as a gating and maintenance mechanism, especially those where players have an impact on the game world or can alter the game world. 

 

  worldalpha

Novice Member

Joined: 11/03/11
Posts: 401

Working hard on WorldAlpha

10/31/13 2:21:42 PM#40
It is working for us.  Not sure any other model that would have allowed us to get the player-base we have now.

Thanks,
Mike
Working on Social Strategy MMORTS (now Launched!) http://www.worldalpha.com

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