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Great Debate MMO

51 comments

  • thekeychainkid - August 26, 2012 6:30 p.m.

    Valve has proved that you can make a lot of money with a simple and fair f2p system thanks to TF2 and DOTA2. So I'm spoiled, and tend to believe most f2p ultimately turns into p2w. While most f2p games stay away from reserving the best items/gear/weapons for paying customers only, they still find ways to virtually lock out non-paying customers of the higher end gear by making level/exp gains anemic. Let's take Blacklight Retribution. In my opinion, it is technically p2w simply because the time required to level to 30, along with the time it takes to permanently unlock gear, is absurdly long and slow going. Unless you drop RL cash on a boost and/or unlock a few pieces of armor or weapons, you'll constantly be at the bottom of the pack due to the massive advantage in gear a higher level player gets over a lower level player. Now it can be argued that technically, a player can earn all of the gear, for free, simply by playing and never spending a penny; which is true. However, The time it would take is made artificially high by the devs in order to "coax" players into paying money for exp boosts and unlocks. Sticking the best gear behind a massive time-wall is nearly as bad as sticking the best gear behind a pay wall. This is something that needs to be considered in future f2p games. When games like BLR come out, I think the temptation to monetize everything gets in the way of balancing the game. If f2p games focused on providing a large amount of custom skins, colors, sounds, etc for a cash shop, the temptation to raise the time-wall, and stick the best gear behind it might be lower. As it stands, BLR is a solid game, and but it definitely doesn't have as many players as it could, simply because it oozes pay to win. If you drop about ten to twenty bucks, you can easily be competitive, but many players walk away before considering the cost-benefit ratio, which hurts the overall playerbase for BLR. Since release the nmbers have declined, despite the game being improved and patched regularly; so you cant claim the current f2p model is doing them any favors.
  • Yukichin - July 30, 2012 3:45 p.m.

    Free to play, provided it's done well (cosmetic bonuses, weapons that do NOT have a power difference, etc.), works great for MMOs. I'm not so sure about single-player games. However, there's a huge thing that Cooper missed about demos: not every game gets one.
  • tomthespesh - July 27, 2012 4:59 p.m.

    Free to play does have a place I feel just not a massive one. I play Battlefield Heroes and World of Tanks, they're not too bad for those who don't wanna pay. Sure with world of tanks paying means you get more credits and xp per battle so without a premium account past tier 5 tanks and you start losing credits if you don't play well but then there's enough tanks up to tier 5 that you can just keep moving it about and trying new stuff. As for battlefield heroes from what I remember the added weapons usually come with a drawback so they're not too overpowered over the standard guns plus you can rent them with the credits you get for winning in games. So if they get them right it works well and doesn't feel like you're getting half a game or losing out to moneybags pouring cash into it.
  • OldSkoolNinja - July 27, 2012 7:21 a.m.

    Doesn't coop love League of Legends? Why is he arguing against?
  • Divine Paladin - July 27, 2012 8:24 a.m.

    Loving it doesn't mean you have to excuse flaws. I love my 360, but I'm not going to say it has no problems. LoL is a great game built upon a poor system.
  • GR HollanderCooper - July 27, 2012 10:33 a.m.

    I do love LoL, and plenty of other F2P games, but for every great F2P there are a dozen that are just out to screw over gamers.
  • darioampuy - August 2, 2012 9:51 p.m.

    so what? it's a F2P rip off! you didn't pay to play, u didn't like it, you play something else!... but what happens when u spend $49.99 in a key for SWTOR beacuse all the fuzz and exciting reviews of "the WoW killer", "the revolution in MMORPG" with a monthly fee of $15 plus microtransactions, and you discover it's World of Warcraft with wookies and lightsabers??? isn't that screwing over gamers??? the pay 2 play era is gone, WOW is loosing gamers FAST, EVE is loosing gamers FAST, SWTOR is bleeding and changed to a fremium based system to stay alive, and more will do the same because tha gamers can support a bad f2p game if it's good enough, but they won't spend money on a AAA rip off for too long no mather how much love they have for it.
  • Voodoowolfe - July 26, 2012 6:48 p.m.

    I agree that the F2P system is broken. Games like Blacklight: Retribution and Super Monday Night Combat are the true meaning of P2W. Blacklight you get tons of temp stuff but you can't get anything permanent without money. So it's barely a F2P game. And SMNC not only has the worst community I have ever experienced in any game online but if you don't pay you get to roll the dice on what pro you get every week. I love World of Tanks but I agree with a past commenter. If you don't put money into that game don't expect to get a tier 10 anytime this year. I think the game is awesome and have put several Bens into it. It's worth it to me. And maybe that's the point. It's like a chinese buffet(the whole F2p thing). Pick what you want put money into it and hope you don't get food poisoning. And skip the stuff that isn't any good.
  • Andrew Groen - July 27, 2012 1:51 p.m.

    "Don't expect to get a tier 10 anytime this year." Isn't that standard with MMOs? Every MMO has top-level content that takes at least a year to acquire.
  • dktuesday - July 28, 2012 12:34 p.m.

    Wrong about Blacklight: Retribution. You can get most weapons free with GP, which is earned by playing matches. Also, every time you level you get access to new items to try out. You should actually play the game before you say anything about it. Besides there are plenty of people that bought weapons with cash, that you can get with gp, that still get owned. Has nothing to do with buying power.
  • Gamer_Geek - July 26, 2012 1:43 p.m.

    The F2P model is ideal for gamers and developers (suppose the gamer gains more of the benefit). A demo only provides a single level or quest, usually in a significant part of the game, and therefore does not give a full overview of the game play unlike the F2P. The F2P model will allow gamers to determine if they like the game without spending any money, however, the benefit for the developer is that it allows them to add additional benefits slowing into the game - extending the game's 'life' - just like DLCs for many major games. The F2P model would not work for the single-player aspects of many games, yet is seen already in many major MMOs.
  • ParagonT - July 26, 2012 8:23 a.m.

    I like both opinions, by buying a game outright, many of these games can STILL become pay-to-win systems. As VagueRaconteur said; (battlefield 3, cough cough). So it's really choosing a lesser of two possible evils.
  • Pruman - July 26, 2012 8:20 a.m.

    "Pay for convenience" - THIS, ABSOLUTELY, is why I utterly loathe free-to-play games. I played World of Tanks for a bit when it was new, and just to grind out of the lowest, crappiest tier of tanks felt like the equivalent of having to grind 40 levels in WoW. I played another game that was like a competitive shmup on iOS for a while that was basically the same thing. Just to get parts to even be able to fight back took an eternity. It's like their attitude is "we'll make the game so miserable that people will HAVE to spend money in order to enjoy themselves!" That's the wrong attitude to have, but I'm sure it's insanely profitable.
  • Andrew Groen - July 27, 2012 1:54 p.m.

    Why are you upset that you have to spend money in a free to play game? You seem to think that the developers have done some kind of bait-and-switch, here. It does exactly what it says: you can play it for free. If you don't like the free experience, you can leave at no charge, or put a few dollars into it. I don't get why people implode when they realize they have to pay $2-3 dollars to enjoy themselves in an F2P game, as opposed to $60 to enjoy themselves in a console game. It's a free-to-play game, not a free game.
  • Bloodstorm - July 26, 2012 6:55 a.m.

    Both make good points. There is a major problem with F2P models and it is the 'pay to win' model that many games are going with. Then, on top of that, the price they charge for their items are usually ridiculous. If these games would have items reasonably priced (like 1-2 dollars) then I could guarantee you everyone would find it easy to keep sinking a buck into the game every so often, which would add up tremendously. Often times they think they need to charge $10 bucks for something because, well, they gave you the game for free and how else are they supposed to make money? Even Valve and TF2 are guilty of this to a lesser degree. I love TF2, I think it does the F2P model better than anything else, but I'd have sunk so much more money into the game if they'd make the keys and hats a bit cheaper. $1 for a key, and I'd open every crate I had. So, right now, I'd much rather drop $60 on a title and get the entire game (you know, unless it is EA or Capcom) than suffer with the F2P models of the current market.
  • comaqi - July 25, 2012 10:41 p.m.

    Lucas is right, Cooper is an ass.
  • Divine Paladin - July 26, 2012 1:48 a.m.

    Good to see you can handle opinions well. I think they both bring up good points, and that you're an ass.
  • VagueRaconteur - July 25, 2012 10:13 p.m.

    Pay to play is, for the most part, a terrible system. Especially if you're a PC gamer. It's fair to pay, say, up to £10 for a digital copy of a game, provided it has hours, and hours of content. But if you're asking for more than that when not actually giving people a physical copy of the disk, it's ludicrous. Even with a disk, you're not paying for much. It's even less of a guarantee that it'll last for any time at all, and people don't like paying for games they just aren't sure of... and half the paid games revert to micro-transactions for pay-to-win anyway! (battlefield 3, cough cough). Free to play is currently plagued by a few waves of pay to win games (Blacklight, Tribes, League of Legends, etc, all requiring purchases to truly play the game properly) but Valve tend to hit the nail on the end for equality every time. DOTA 2 is the fairest F2P game imaginable, and is making them a fortune. Why? People will buy purely aesthetic things so people will marvel at their shiny things. TF2 is the same. The weapons can sometimes offer an alternative playing style in a minor way, but you're just as well off with the default items, and people will buy and use alternative weapons just for how they look! Whilst it's okay for some to be a one time, paid transactions for all (Steam sales tend to take most of the sting of the price-tags away), it has to be low cost, for hours of entertainment, or sooner or later people will stop buying it. Anything Valve does, as previously mentioned, turns to gold, and people will follow their approach to F2P, for the best for gamers everywhere.
  • xevian - May 18, 2013 1:34 a.m.

    Seriously League of Legends a P2W?? What is p2w element in here can u tell me? Cosmetic skins?IP boost? lol
  • zombi3grim - July 25, 2012 9:02 p.m.

    I agree with Cooper. I cant stand the F2P system. I like to know Im getting my moneys worth right out of the box.

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