Yoink

How ArtCraft gets $30 a month from me, VIP with value, not power.

35 posts in this topic

TL:DR - I don't care If I can harvest and combat and craft all at once or not, but I want to be able to experiment with 5 different stupid builds of Lego and I'd pay for that option.

 

These are my thoughts and opinions on VIP and P2W. I'm sorry if this shouldn't be it's own thread.


When determining what P2W is you need to establish a base cost of entry. Anything over that which gives you an in game advantage can and should be considered P2W. I think we can all agree on that. In Crowfall the base cost of entry is buying an account. I do not feel that two accounts of equal age, one VIP and one with out should differ in in game power. The VIP account can have more options in what they play when they are in game, but not more power when they are actually in game. Using this definition of P2W or in game power, the current changes to VIP give VIP accounts additional in game power and options. Lets look at each of the three trees you can divide trains into. Race, Class, and Profession. I am going to list them upside down to try and better illustrate my point.

Race Tree
Human Halfblood Elf Faerie Hybrid Underfoot
Man Sylvan Monster
Racial Basics
Class Tree
Chivalry Barbarian Arcane Divine Mercenary Scoundrel
Fighter Mage Rogue
Class Basics

As it stands right now with VIP you can train any 2 of these boxes in each tree at once with VIP. The issue with this is training any 2 in the same column let you double dip on power. If I train Human and Man or Racial basics and Man, I am gaining power twice as fast as non VIP when I play a human. The same is true for the class tree. In order to give options and not power, this needs to be limited to only 1 skill training at a time in each column. Training Racial basics or Class Basics needs to lock you out of everything above. Training Man needs to lock you out of everything above or below, etc etc etc.

Now on the subject of the profession tree. In my opinion this tree is the most important. This is what you are in game. The training available needs to be the same for VIP and non-VIP. You can not argue that someone training combat/harvesting, combat/profession, or profession/harvesting does not have an in game advantage over someone who can only train 1 of the three, and at some point things like sieging, tracking, exploration will be in the profession tree. My ideas for this tree are the following.

1. Keep it only 1 general train for VIP and non-VIP like it used to be.

2. Make it 2 general trains for VIP and non-VIP.

3. Give VIP access to a second 'Crow'. Make profession training on the 'Crow' level and not the account level. 'Crows' get the same number of profession trains on VIP and non-VIP. This option gives VIP more options, but no more in game power over non VIP.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Now on to what would make me subscribe to at least $30 a month worth of VIP.

Using the above, giving VIP more choices, not power, I would pay VIP for a butt load of trains.

I believe right now there are 40 combinations of class/race that you can be. Then multiply 40 by how ever many trees there are for combat, crafting, harvesting, sieging, tracking, exploration, and add in discipline combos. I am not sure what the number is but it has to be in the 1000s. Using just what is in game right now there are 14 professions you can train if you count combat as 1. That is 560 combinations. This is with out the professions not yet in game of which there are quite a few and ignoring discipline combinations. This is counting combat as 1 ignoring 1h vs 2h vs ranged vs arcane vs weapon type vs armor training. With 1000s of combinations I see no harm in allowing 2 general trains on a single 'Crow' for both VIP and non-VIP but profession trains need to be equal for VIP and non-VIP.

This is what I propose.

VIP -

1. 3 race trains and 3 class trains. Trains can not "double dip" in power. Additional trains must be lateral in power. This would mean you can't utilize additional trains until you moved past racial and class basics. I think that is ok but a few ideas would be to just remove the basics branch, make it very fast to train through, or allow unspent training time to funnel into a generic time vault.

2. 1 or 2 profession trains but must be equal to non-VIP. As long as profession trains are equal you can allow "double dipping" if you want. Hey, more choice, right?

3. A second "crow" on my account with profession trains moved to the 'crow' level, not the account level. This way if we have 1 profession train I can train combat on one 'crow' and harvesting on a 2nd 'crow' but never have both active at the same time on the same character so I am still equal power to non-VIP on what ever 'crow' I am in game on.

Plus, add what ever else it is you would be adding to VIP. Time bank/vault stuff, cosmetics, what ever. The above is all I would need to VIP 2 accounts full time.

 

Non-VIP

They get the standard 1/1/1. They have less options of what to play but what ever they are in game on is equal footing to what ever the VIP account is in game on.

 

Edited by Yoink

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I don't think I can disagree with you on any of this as it is all very reasonable. The only thing wrong with this scenario is I still come out better if I use ALT accounts instead of VIP.

3 accounts non-vip = $90 and allows me to train different combinations of race/class/profession as I see fit with a max variable of 3/3/3

VIP for 12 months = $180 with the only meaningful differentiation being I have a larger time bank. Even if your dual crow system was implemented a VIP player would still have less profession options than the 3 account non-vip. The problem with your dual crow scenario is then figuring out which crow the account has access to when it no longer has VIP. Sure they could work something out, but it simply does not solve the problem of VIP vs ALT effectiveness.

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That is still an issue. I guess you could up the number of trains or 'alt crows'. Give me access to many more combinations of training. Personally, I don't care for the profession trees. I will likely just go combat. I just want the option to play and experiment with many many combinations of race/class/disc. Non VIP you access to train 1 combination at a time, not sure what the number would need to be for VIP to make it worth not having alt accounts. I want to pay a monthly fee and have access to all the content. I don't need more power with VIP, just access to the game.

Edited by Yoink
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The problem for crowfall is no matter how it works out, the total cost for alt accounts will be less than VIP. Even if you made VIP the equivalent of 6 non-vip accounts.

6x$30 = $180 (one time charge) vs $180 a year for VIP.

The act of "swapping crows" is the same as swapping accounts plus the technical/support aspects of determining crow access once the account no longer has VIP. This is simply not a viable option to solve the problem.

Edited by Verot
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But then it comes down to maintaining the many alt accounts, and I think a lot of ppl would rather try and keep it to 1 account.

But I would like to have several choices as well, as of right now, I would like to play atleast 1 class and 1 races in 3 different trees, so I have to cut one off for launch with the current iteration of the VIP bonuses. 

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Yeah, there pretty much is no perfect solution to his tbh, certainly dont envy artcraft on this point, No matter what they gonna do, they gonna ruffle a lot of feathers. I do think what they been thinking is by giving 2/2/2 to vip and 1/1/1 to non-vip they pretty much make VIP as good as alt account, or even slightly better (time bank length and the fact that you can mix and match races and classes now, so 2 race-trees on one account can be used with 2 class trees making far more option than 1 of each on 2 separate account). And then realising the power gain for vip over non-vip with this they added in the tomes so you could make up for that as a non-vip by buying skill time with the tomes (and this mechanics even double-dipping as a catch-up mechanic). And then use the diminishing returns and the one type of tome for each skill tree to prevent alts from abusing it. So they really did try and close a lot of doors, but is it the best solution they come up with, I dont necessarily think that, but is certainly an A for effort.

 

I do like Yoinks idea, personally would prefer the 2 professions trains for both VIP and non-VIP

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Imo 1/2/2 and 1/1/2 is much more approachable and still of great value - as long as it doesnt land on 2/2/2.

 

For example - The reason for races being ok is that you can only be one race at a time.  You're not removing gameplay from someone else either.

 

Being a dual train combat/exploration, combat/craft will remove gameplay.

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All of the complaints about the system currently requiring too much interdependence are very silly.  People are playing in a "world" with like 30 testers and no real economy worth building. 

MMORPGs aren't supposed to be about achieving everything on your own, and when the game opens up to thousands finding someone to craft your plate chest isn't going to be nearly as hard. 

But people don't seem to understand the value of interdependency and specialization.  They can't seem to get past their own desire for convenience. 

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The ability to chose is power. I'm sick of Artcraft saying that they want to give vip players choice not power, it's oxymoronic.

I strongly disliked that archetype training was 3 to 1, vip to non-vip.

This is new system is far worse. On average a vip player will have FOUR times as many options when it comes to race/class combos... but the situation can be so much worse than that average. If you want to play the original Nethari Confessor then as a Non-vip player that will be your only option... but as a vip player you can pick human,elf,arcane,rouge and have EIGHT options. Eight times as many options... that's nuts.

If Artcraft wants to get my money beyond what I've already paid then they will need to give 2 sets of concurrent training to EVERYONE. At that stage I would be happy to play such a game and the benefit of the 30day timebank alone would make me want to pay. Not to mention the various other bonuses that they could give VIP players.

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I don't think that P2W is so black and white.  To a degree, the community will decided what P2W is and to what degree it is acceptable.  For instance, if guilds start requiring that members have VIP, or there is general discrimination against non-VIP players, then it is a problem (regardless of what the benefits are and what the numbers look like - reality trumps theory).

I 100% agree about the "double dipping in the same trees" issue.  Stating for the sake of clarity: You train 'Racial Basics' to 65% (or w/e it ends up being) and then start training in the 'Man' tree while still training in 'Racial Basics'.  The same issue happens in the Class and Combat trees as well.  That to me is a clear power advantage for VIP (although perhaps small - we don't know until we see the skill trees).  This is clearly P2W, the ONLY way you can get this power increase is by paying.  That being said, if it ends up being a 1% advantage for VIP, no one will care.  But, if it is 20%, then yea, we have a problem.  The concept: The degree to which something is P2W matters, not just if it is.

However, I do not think that being able to train Combat/Profession at the same time is necessarily a power advantage.  In my mind, a P2W power advantage needs to be something that cannot be obtained unless paid for (within reason*).  In this case, if you craft your own purple weapon, or purchase one from someone else, you have the same power.  You gained only the convenience (and potential cost savings) from making your own; not power.  Unless there is Bind-on-Pickup style crafted gear that ONLY the crafter can use (See WoW), then in my mind, crafting is not considered a P2W power increase.

In summary, there is a huge difference in my mind between being behind in power because of less training (cannot get this power any other way) versus being behind in power because someone crafted gear (can get this by other means).  Paying for convenience and efficiency (within reason**) is not P2W.

* If you have to spend 20 years in game to obtain something that cost $20, that would impact this balance (exaggerated to make the point).

** Again, the degree is important in evaluating this.

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@Kirchhoff I have to disagree with you when you say you don't think training combat and then crafting/harvesting is a power advantage. The waters might get muddied a bit once you factor in the total number of players, but its obvious when you look at it in a smaller context. In a 10 vs 10 scenario of VIP vs non-vip, the VIP who are all combat + either harvest/craft have a force multiplier applied to them that the non-vip wont have. Even if the non-vip are all combat specialists the VIP group would have a significant advantage in resources and gear which will affect the outcome of a fight. Training Combat/Harvesting is just as much of a power advantage as training Combat/Combat when the non-vip has to pick 1 of the 3.

Edited by Verot
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There will also be non combat profession skills that will more directly affect in game combat than harvesting or crafting. Think about a group of VIP players with combat/sieging, combat/tracking, combat/survival trained vs a group with just combat trained.

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47 minutes ago, Verot said:

@Kirchhoff I have to disagree with you when you say you don't think training combat and then crafting/harvesting is a power advantage. The waters might get muddied a bit once you factor in the total number of players, but its obvious when you look at it in a smaller context. In a 10 vs 10 scenario of VIP vs non-vip, the VIP who are all combat + either harvest/craft have a force multiplier applied to them that the non-vip wont have. Even if the non-vip are all combat specialists the VIP group would have a significant advantage in resources and gear which will affect the outcome of a fight. Training Combat/Harvesting is just as much of a power advantage as training Combat/Combat when the non-vip has to pick 1 of the 3.

I understand the argument, but it is kind of an arbitrary circumstance you are portraying.  Just because someone has crafting training does not mean they will automatically have better gear than someone who does not.  It just is not that simple.  Who plays the game more will impact the quality of their gear far more than who has VIP, which to me, removes it as a P2W concern.

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15 minutes ago, Yoink said:

There will also be non combat profession skills that will more directly affect in game combat than harvesting or crafting. Think about a group of VIP players with combat/sieging, combat/tracking, combat/survival trained vs a group with just combat trained.

This is absolutely a potential concern.  Remains to be seen how this will impact things.  It seems likely that min/max guilds will have most players going Combat + Siege/Tracking/Survival (and not crafting or harvesting).  There are likely to be passives in those trees that help you in combat related activities (not so with crafting).  This to me is a far bigger concern that someone training Combat + Gathering/Crafting.  We will see.

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29 minutes ago, Kirchhoff said:

I understand the argument, but it is kind of an arbitrary circumstance you are portraying.  Just because someone has crafting training does not mean they will automatically have better gear than someone who does not.  It just is not that simple.  Who plays the game more will impact the quality of their gear far more than who has VIP, which to me, removes it as a P2W concern.

I agree with your sentiment, but all things equal you must agree that 2 professions even without double dipping represents a power advantage. There are a ton of variables which can affect the ultimate power of a player, but in terms of power potential 2 professions vs 1 is a big advantage.

I'm a big fan of the VIP changes and actually hope they do allow for double dipping of a single profession.

Edited by Verot
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19 hours ago, Verot said:

I don't think I can disagree with you on any of this as it is all very reasonable. The only thing wrong with this scenario is I still come out better if I use ALT accounts instead of VIP.

3 accounts non-vip = $90 and allows me to train different combinations of race/class/profession as I see fit with a max variable of 3/3/3

VIP for 12 months = $180 with the only meaningful differentiation being I have a larger time bank. Even if your dual crow system was implemented a VIP player would still have less profession options than the 3 account non-vip. The problem with your dual crow scenario is then figuring out which crow the account has access to when it no longer has VIP. Sure they could work something out, but it simply does not solve the problem of VIP vs ALT effectiveness.

In your money saving model you have to deal with the inconvenience of logging in and out of characters. You have to do this constantly to switch characters, to train characters, to transfer loot between characters, etc....

This is rather annoying and something I personally won't deal with. Also ACE selling their game to 1 person for $90 bucks is a giant win. Most AAA titles can at most ask for $60 dollars. Crowfall will not be launched at AAA quality.

Edited by ClockworkOrange
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There's so much stigma attached to subscriptions, and vip and p2w it's kinda ridiculous. ACE should've pitched the game as pay 2 play from the beginning. I'm not a fan of double dipping into combat, but I think double dipping into exploration and crafting could work fine. The proposed system makes me want to buy VIP, in fact, it makes me want to buy VIP on all my alts, where as the previous system just encouraged me to buy alts.

Quote

All of the complaints about the system currently requiring too much interdependence are very silly.  People are playing in a "world" with like 30 testers and no real economy worth building. 

MMORPGs aren't supposed to be about achieving everything on your own, and when the game opens up to thousands finding someone to craft your plate chest isn't going to be nearly as hard. 

But people don't seem to understand the value of interdependency and specialization.  They can't seem to get past their own desire for convenience.

 

Except crowfall is loaded with interdependence, especially when it comes to accomplishing goals. Whether it be harvesting with a group, sieging, harvesting for factories, hunting for thralls, territorial control, these are all things where you're going to depend on other people. The dependency level was so high that were basically nut cupping each other; now it's realistic. This is a discussion that has been going on for a long time behind the scenes, so anyone that things the developers just woke up one night and decided to change the system is delusional. With the new proposed system crafters will still rely on others for mats, they'll rely on each other for certain components. Being stuck doing one thing for an enormous percentage of your game career is awful, especially when we're talking about character / account progression taking years, not months.

Edited by Helix

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19 hours ago, Yoink said:

This is what I propose.

I highly agree VIP should be Value, not power. I also think you have addressed every power concern in a very well thought out way. I hadn't even brought up the double training race or class that you did as I hoped ACE would handle it correctly (i don't know why) and didn't want to add to an already confusing discussion.

My only fear is that we make the difference between VIP vs non-VIP so complicated that people end up being confused. Not saying that you are doing it, but it is starting to go in this direction.

Think of the conversation you will have with a friend when trying to get him into Crowfall. Is he still listening when you have finished explaining VIP vs non-VIP?

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24 minutes ago, ClockworkOrange said:

In your money saving model you have to deal with the inconvenience of logging in and out of characters. You have to do this constantly to switch characters, to train characters, to transfer loot between characters, etc....

This is rather annoying and something I personally won't deal with. Also ACE selling their game to 1 person for $90 bucks is a giant win. Most AAA titles can at most ask for $60 dollars. Crowfall will not be launched at AAA quality.

There is an inconvenience fee sure, but the question is how much inconvenience am I'm willing to endure to save $180 a year? Also, some of the inconvenience you describe can easily be mitigated. VIP players still have to visit shrines etc to swap race/class, I simply log out and back in. Training characters will only get easier with the passage of time, as skills take a minimum of 3 days to train and i believe a maximum of 24 right now. Transferring loot between characters can be done with guild storage, or simply opening up 2 clients, and while its an inconvenience, i think its easy to overcome. I remember the good ole days of UO when, if you did not have a house, you would go hide a bag somewhere and hope it was still there when you got on with your other character.

The money issue ignores the potential for future money that will be coming in from the VIP player. In the context of 1 year the VIP represents a total investment of $210 vs $90 for 3 non-vip accounts. Years 2+ is $180 for the VIP and $0 for the non-vip. Now, if you assume the game will be a flop in the first couple of months then getting as much money as you can as quickly as you can might be the better option. CF would have to flop in 4 months or less for the VIP player to come out ahead, $90 for the 3 account non-vip vs $30 + (4*$15) for the VIP player.

Edited by Verot
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