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Elder Scrolls Online

Elder Scrolls Online 

General Discussion  » Forbes strikes back against MMORPG.com

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169 posts found
  keithian

Hard Core Member

Joined: 5/20/06
Posts: 2926

 
OP  1/09/14 11:48:03 AM#1

In the end, I didn't get much from either side because the biggest issue I have is that no one can agree on what the word 'successful' even means. Seems to me that a game is labeled as a failure if it didn't meet 'expectations', whatever those are, bleeds subs as expected with any MMO 3-6 months out, still generates a ton of revenue, but not 1/2 as much as WOW. Unless you maintain the exact number of subs you start with, even increase them over time, you are a failure, a premise I just don't agree with anymore with the sheer number of game choices, how fickle today's gamers are, and competition from mobile devices, new consoles, new technology (upcoming devices like Occulus Rift or Sony Virtual headset, etc).

Personally I think that Forbes writer is really desperate for attention. Anyway a good way to get hits on both sites.

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2014/01/09/will-the-elder-scrolls-online-have-the-last-laugh-with-its-subscription-fee/

There Is Always Hope!

  winter

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/08/03
Posts: 2220

1/09/14 11:55:07 AM#2
The forbes writer seem like a bit of a idiot.
  User Deleted
1/09/14 11:57:21 AM#3

His reasoning is seriously flawed, heres why.

 

Old school Sub paying custmoers are more likey to spend a lot more money in any type of micro transatctions then free to play gamer of this next generation is willing to do.

 

Let me get more detailed.  Lotro for example.  Old school gamers love that type of RPG, which is also the type of MMORPG that ESO is going to be.  If you look at Lotro,  paying sub players (old school)  has all the cash and is the ones who are paying well above the sub,  I used to play it and paid $75 a month on top of my $15 sub.  

 

This writer represents the NEXT GENERATION of gamers, the I WANT IT ALL FREE generation, which will never give a game company more then a sub's worth of money ever in any given month.    Any game company that panders to these folks are asking for their game to be ruined, because the people with all the cash and willing to spend unreal amounts of money are the old school gamers, which love games such as ESO and actually demand a sub based fee.

 

This writer  will soon realize that games that pander to sub based players and create games that old school gamers who like subs prefer will make a game well more successful then any F2P players of the NEXT GENERATION.

 

Many game companies also try to pander to both the F2P while trying to keep the Sub players,  F2P represents the next gen of gamers (wow teens who are now adults) which have shown time and time again the games that are produced for this generation of people fail.  WHY?  Because old school gamers (the ones the writer mentions as sub people)  are the ones who make a game successful, and they demand games like LOTRO, or ESO,  not games like GW2, or games like SWTOR,  which the free to play crowd wants.   

 

This is why the writer is so wrong, and because hes too young to realize this from an old school gamers point of view, he will always get his predictions wrong on games like ESO, and true MMO's that old schoolers want.

  rodarin

Advanced Member

Joined: 5/21/10
Posts: 410

1/09/14 12:00:39 PM#4

They guy makes some of the 'right' points, but he has written about ESO twice now and failed to mention it is a hybrid of everything. It has a sub, it has a store and it costs a premium price for the game itself. Whether he thinks that is under an NDA or not is unknown, I dont think it is.

 

But the fact is ESO will have a store where SUBSCRIBERS will also be able to spend money beyond their subscription. The extent of the store or its variety isnt known but it will be safe to assume it will have what every other MMO offers in Free to play and buy to play games.

 

That is the biggest kick in the nuts. But if people are willing to let themselves be double dipped all the better for the company I suppose.

 

It so desnt take a genius to predict an MMO failure, subscription based or not. History is on the side of the critics. Considering  how little ESO is offering at release it isnt hard to predict the demise of this game either.

 

In 6 months ESO will be in the rear view of a lot of people and I doubt many will even be talking about it because it will then be a known commodity. It will be 3 months old and it will have a certain number of people playing it.

 

if that Forbes guy wants to tlak about it then he will. But nothing anyone says or does (other than Bethesda/Zenimax) is going to change anything.

  User Deleted
1/09/14 12:00:47 PM#5

I'm so over this subject. Last time I go into it.

 

"a game has to be truly incredible to inspire that sort of fan devotion where they’d welcome such a model with open arms."

That right there is what all these newer MMOs are hoping for. That their product is so good, that it will have a positive flow of subscribers.

If you build it, they will come. Just build a damn good game.

 

"With rumors of a massive budget,"

Most likely true.

 

"indicators that the game itself isn’t anything phenomenal,"

Extremely subjective...you can't make a point of hearsay at this moment in time. For myself? I'll be my own judge of that when I get my hands on the game.

 

"and the insistence of the subscription model across all platforms,"

I'm weary about the consoles. I want to see how that will be solved.

 

"I stand by my assertion that ESO has the potential to be a huge miss for ZeniMax and Bethesda."

He can stand by as much as he wants. Only time will tell.

 

Oh, his article should have been proofread. /petpeeve

  DamonVile

Elite Member

Joined: 11/22/05
Posts: 4339

1/09/14 12:00:57 PM#6

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

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

  lugal

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/13/08
Posts: 502

1/09/14 12:16:30 PM#7
I wasn't planning buying this game. Seeing that idiot at Forbes hating on teso with his predictions of failure, I will be buying a copy of the game.

Roses are red
Violets are blue
The reviewer has a mishapen head
Which means his opinion is skewed
...Aldous.MF'n.Huxley

  User Deleted
1/09/14 12:30:42 PM#8
Originally posted by DamonVile

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

I couldn't have said it better myself.  When game companies realize they need to pander to old school gaming with modernized graphics and modernized mechanics, they will be successful.

  greenreen

Advanced Member

Joined: 11/19/12
Posts: 1390

1/09/14 1:12:18 PM#9

This guy doesn't deserve all this attention. I can only hope his view count is reduced this round so he shuts up already. How dare he research after he makes predictions then rebut others with no data at all. He's still in the same boat claiming that SWTOR = ESO and that's not logical. The only thing he's right about is the sub numbers being recent data - RS you can see the subs by looking at their ranking chart and seeing the record count of rows returned because it's members based - bam 493,407 paying players today http://services.runescape.com/m=hiscore/ranking?category_type=0&table=0&page=19737 But does that mean those players have left the market - not necessarily. They are still paying, they just pay differently now. If they weren't paying - free games wouldn't even be profitable - someone at the end of the day is paying.

 

The article writer keeps overlooking the non-obvious. People who are paying more than the subscription model in games are perfectly capable of paying for a subscription game. They are there and he acknowledges them but somehow thinks that the word subscription frightens them or is a burden. People have been subbing and unsubbing for years, the characters are rarely deleted so they can leave if they need to and though they may be playing free games, many of them are paying as much as they always have. There are new players who were bred into the free model and could never convert but that's fine, there are many of games for them. This one just won't be it. That's what they keep overlooking - all players don't want the same thing out of these games nor do they even want to pay the same way. There are hundreds of free games to choose from, those games can expect constant churn. The sub games are dwindling and in their favor the people who want that are being routed toward tighter pathways but they still have the opportunity to leave at will so simply being sub won't cut it. As been said over and over, sub still needs to be good inside to keep the churn down.

 

  Butch808

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/16/09
Posts: 319

1/09/14 1:17:01 PM#10
Originally posted by DamonVile

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

+1 BILLION.

  theAsna

Advanced Member

Joined: 7/16/09
Posts: 301

1/09/14 1:17:10 PM#11


I won’t spend much time debating the accuracy of this chart. The numbers seem like okay guesses, but that’s just what they are, guesses. Almost no company makes this sort of data public, so it’s tough to make a chart like this and declare that it’s definitive data. Also absent is the other hugely important side of the spreadsheet: costs.
  


With this statement the author of the Forbes article is right. Due to lack of accurate public data we can only speculate as to which model is financially more sustainable or more successful.


From my personal perspective I can say that I still play a game which started once as a "subscription only"-model and which has switched to a "freemium"-model. The game caters to 3 kinds of players. F2P players that can play part of the game without paying, P2P players (who can unlock additional content/races/classes by paying once) and subscribers (who don't have any restrictions as long as they pay the sub). I ended up canceling my subscription and becoming a P2P player because in the long run it is cheaper to once unlock content. Dunno if such behavior is good for the company that maintains and develops the game but the incentives and benefits to keep the subscription were slowly getting bleaker and bleaker. Dunno if some mythical "whales" are spending so much that my austerity doesn't matter.


But one thing is true. The barrier to try a different MMORPG game (F2P) is significantly lowered. And if you have found a game which you like then the barrier to come back repeatedly is lowered as well. Unfortunately most MMORPGs don't appeal to me. Not because of the payment model, but because of gameplay issues.

  • I can't stand the quest design of most MMORPGs anymore.
  • The class/build options are too often too limited.
  • You are offered beautiful 3D worlds but some games don't even allow you to climb or swim and limit the explorable game world artificially with invisible walls.


Only time can tell if TESO will be successful. But unfortunately we won't know exactly because we lack vital informations. From a financial point of view success can be defined as getting past "break even" and to continue earning money with a stable profit margin (5% to 10% should be OK for most industries, especially for ones with heavy competition). Fluctuations of the player base will happen but that's the time when the company has to add new content/new hamster wheels.

  rodarin

Advanced Member

Joined: 5/21/10
Posts: 410

1/09/14 1:31:58 PM#12
Originally posted by DamonVile

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

Well thats ESO in a nutshell. But I dont think the guy wanted o get into something THAT subjective.

 

yes a lot of what he says is subjective but it based on other factors. So it isnt subjective based on opinions that are based on something else that cant be quantified.

 

ESO wont 'fail' because it is sub based ,it will 'fail' because it isnt a great game. Having a sub just makes it a much easier target to ridicule.

 

IMO GW2 isnt a great game, it is a good game, it isnt sub worthy, but it is Buy t play worthy. Has it 'failed' I dont know. I dont think it could be labeled a failure except by the hardest of haters. But it also doesnt offer anything profoundly unique. But it does offer monthy specials in terms of PvE encounters. OS that makes it sort of 'special', but the OVERALL experince isnt there. Again my opinion.

 

Which is the same as a lot of other games. But theyre also all free to play. So ESO as a sub game has that extra hhurdle to cross. Which like I said it doesnt and why it is such an easy target.

 

If this guy wants to keep harping on the sub model he has to look att he only other sub model (other than WoW) and use it. FFXIV. A re-do of a 'failed' game and certainly a fledgling in the sub length but it is stil a sub game and can show how a game reinvented itself, went sub and how it has fared since its initial re-release and where it stands now. Then try and correlate that with ESO as time goes by.

 

Then he might win back so points on validity of thought.

  User Deleted
1/09/14 1:33:11 PM#13
Originally posted by Butch808
Originally posted by DamonVile

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

+1 BILLION.

You could even go as far to say that subs fail becaue they designed those games for the NEXT GENERATION F2P crowd, sometimes even being exact wow clones.   Any game that panders to these types of players will never be able to be a SUB game or keep the player base that wants sub games (old schoolers).

 

How many sub based games will be forced to go free two play because they are designed for the wrong crowd?   A lot so far, and I suspect the gaming industry will soon realize, that games that are designed and made for EQ1, LOTRO, ELDER SCROLLS, ASHERONS CALL, EQOA, ULTIMA  just to name a few, but on modernized graphics and modernized mechanics (which is the main reason people left those games in the first place)  soon as they realize this is the style of old school games that SUB players want, and ONLY then, will they be successful SUB BASED GAMES.

 

ESO in my opinion is one game company who has realized this, and will be a successful SUB BASED GAME because of it.

  ste2000

Apprentice Member

Joined: 2/28/04
Posts: 4718

1/09/14 1:44:42 PM#14
Originally posted by DamonVile

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

This.......... the highlighted part is what I am missing most of the old MMOs, and what modern MMOs are missing.

I have $70 monthly budget for gaming, none of it goes to any MMO, because nothing deserves my money right now.

I am spending it in Single Player games............... waiting for MMO developers to snap out of it and wake up from their sleep..

 

  CazNeerg

Novice Member

Joined: 8/06/04
Posts: 2220

"So, Lone Star, now you see that evil will always triumph, because good is dumb." Dark Helmet

1/09/14 1:44:48 PM#15
AAA games that rely exclusively on subs usually don't fail.  They convert to Freemium after the players run out of content.  Which will happen.  Consumption is faster than creation.  People who think any AAA game other than WoW, no matter how high the quality of content, can provide enough quantity at launch to keep people subbed in the long term - those people are living in a dream world.

Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
Through passion, I gain strength.
Through strength, I gain power.
Through power, I gain victory.
Through victory, my chains are broken.
The Force shall free me.

  Teala

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 6/16/04
Posts: 7429

"Really officer, they're herbs."

1/09/14 1:55:15 PM#16
Originally posted by DamonVile

Subs fail because of the design of the game not because of the model itself. When they start making games that give players worlds to live in again, people will start subbing to them. No one ( very few ) wants to pay monthly for a roller coaster ride that ends in under 30 days and then leaves you with nothing to do but tired mechanics like dailies or gear grinds in a single raid.

 

This...and one more thing, because gone are the days of limited choices.    The market is saturated with games.   Unlike 10 years ago, players had no choice but to pay whatever the game company asked for.   Take WoW for instance.    People played, they liked it, they became invested in the game after a few years.    Same for EVE.     That is why charging a monthly fee for these games still works - people are invested in them.

If WoW were released today as it was back when it was first released - it would be better off being B2P.   

The only way I can see charging a monthly fee for an MMORPG any more is if the game is an actual MMORPG as they were meant to be designed - persistent online virtual world.  

  LeGrosGamer

Novice Member

Joined: 7/06/13
Posts: 214

1/09/14 2:07:34 PM#17
Originally posted by keithian

In the end, I didn't get much from either side because the biggest issue I have is that no one can agree on what the word 'successful' even means. Seems to me that a game is labeled as a failure if it didn't meet 'expectations', whatever those are, bleeds subs as expected with any MMO 3-6 months out, still generates a ton of revenue, but not 1/2 as much as WOW. Unless you maintain the exact number of subs you start with, even increase them over time, you are a failure, a premise I just don't agree with anymore with the sheer number of game choices, how fickle today's gamers are, and competition from mobile devices, new consoles, new technology (upcoming devices like Occulus Rift or Sony Virtual headset, etc).

Personally I think that Forbes writer is really desperate for attention. Anyway a good way to get hits on both sites.

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2014/01/09/will-the-elder-scrolls-online-have-the-last-laugh-with-its-subscription-fee/

It's not a question of expectations, a MMO is deem a success if let's say on launch, 2 million copies are sold, and 6 months later there are still 1.6 million people playing on a regular basis. For a failure, take a game like Diablo 3 for example that sold in the millions of copies but barely 10,000 people are playing it on a regular basis, but that might change once Xpac releases at end March 2014.    Or another failure, FF14 : ARR, millions have bought the game within the first month of release and you look at it today, not even 6 months in, and it's a ghost town compared to when the game was 2 months in. What killed FF14 at the moment is the fact that they didn't take a extra month or 2 to implement more features on official launch. Because people WERE paying the sub fee to play this once upon a time great MMO.    

   As far as TESO goes, we'll see how the game does once we get to July / August. But my gut tells me that by that time most of TESO players will be back playing Skyrim, while TESO will be uninstalled. A successful MMO isn't based on sales, it is based on how many people keep logging in from day 1.  If TESO  manages to sale 20 million copies on it's first month but we get to Christmas and barely 500,000 are playing with the game being F2P, then the game would be a failure. Maple Story, we can joke all we want and call it a sissy game, but the bloody game has more active players playing it on a daily basis then WoW.  The only thing keeping Maple Story from stealing the crown off WoW is the fact that, money wise, MS doesn't generate 10% of what WoW generates.

 

   Only thing I can hope for TESO, even though I won't be trying it, is that they don't do FF14's mistake and release a game with half the features not yet finished.  If they plan on releasing a unfinished game, Bethesda might as well go F2P right off the bat and never charge a sub fee.

  Vutar

Advanced Member

Joined: 1/10/09
Posts: 749

Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. -George Santayana

1/09/14 2:14:15 PM#18
Originally posted by winter
The forbes writer seem like a bit of a idiot.

 

I stopped reading about half way through the article with that thought in mind.

  lizardbones

Elite Member

Joined: 6/11/08
Posts: 10377

I've become dependent upon spell check. My apologies for stupid grammatical errors.

1/09/14 2:14:57 PM#19

There are some good points all around, including the people posting on these forums.

* A game's success depends far more on the game itself rather than the game's monetization model.
* A game's financial success can be affected by the game's monetization model, especially if that model allows the game to capture people willing to spend more money along with people willing to spend just a little bit of money, along with people who are willing to pay a subscription.
* The terms "success" and "failure" are used far more to imply games that someone likes or not, rather than any objective measure of the game's success.
* MMORPGs with huge budgets are probably not a good idea, and a better alternative is probably going to be smaller MMORPGs. Think more Rift or Wildstar sized games and fewer ESO sized games.

ESO will either succeed or fail depending on the game, not the subscription model. The game will be what it is, while the monetization model can be changed to suit the market as needed.

For every large, complex problem, there is a simple, clear solution that also happens to be absolutely wrong.

  Sawlstone

Novice Member

Joined: 10/22/09
Posts: 308

1/09/14 2:17:35 PM#20
I'm annoyed at this arguement since its an objective article written by a subjective topic. Either way, I don't agree with the Forbes guy, but +1 for doing his job. 
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