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The Pay To Win Debate


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My entire point though is, if you used cash in that game to get 10k gold, and I used my 6, 16x16 farms and my 24x24 to get 10k gold, and we both go to the auction house at the same time to buy gear, who really has an advantage? How is that P2W? 

 

It's not. I was just pointing out a fringe case of how even allowing a little cash for flash can be used to create an advantage.

 

From what I see right now with CF - things should be golden. Sure, I will own a giant castle and have land for everyone who wants some, giving us a bit of a tactical advantage in market PvP... But that should be minor.

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Going with your example:

 

Player A has real life money.

Player B has a sword.

Player C has nothing.

 

Player A buys VIP ticket or cosmetic items then trades for the sword to Player B. Player A goes out into the forest. Player C comes across Player A. Both Player A and Player C have equal skill. Player A wins because he bought a sword before Player C had a chance to gather materials and craft one himself. Player A won because he spent real money to trade for in-game items.

 

Yes people will argue that gear doesn't matter in this game and it's all skill. Well take equal skill, the person that has the better gear will win. And there will be better quality gear. Like Crit Chance and Damage is better than just Damage or whatever people end up finding. Thus the gear that becomes better will cost more in-game. The mats that make the gear will be harder to obtain due to people fighting over it.

 

In a game that has no end, this doesn't matter as much. Eventually everyone will catch up in gear. However, in Crowfall, where Campaigns are limited time, a week in a three month Campaign will have a great impact on the outcome of the Campaign. 

 

And before you say that VIP market is limited, don't forget you can buy cosmetic in-game items and in-game items can be tradable. By logical conclusion, you can trade cosmetic items bought from the cash-shop. 

 

Also, before you say you can't enter the world with your fancy sword, yes there will be Campaigns that you can enter the world with your things. Or even if it's a brand new Campaign, this is still a risk. You'll have those players that don't work, like students for example, that can spend far more time but have no money. Then you'll have the working adults that have less time but more money. Evens out yes? But what about the students that don't have time and don't have money. Or the working adult that doesn't have time and can't or doesn't want to spend money. Or the ones that do have time and can spend money. Either way, the people that can and are willing to spend more money will gain an advantage. 

 

Even if you're not thinking made items, think resource holdings.

 

Guild A owns a copper mine. 

Guild B has a lot of real life money to spend.

 

Guild A gives the copper mine to Guild B for X amount of VIP memberships to give to its guild members. You just won at an entire resource mine that will put you ahead of other guilds. Being ahead and having an advantage in a time-based game is winning. 

 

Or if you want to go cosmetic:

 

Guild A owns a copper mine.

Guild B has real life money.

 

Guild B offers Guild A to buy cosmetic furniture for Guild A's EK for the copper mine. Guild A agrees. Now a useless cosmetic thing with EK gave an advantage to a Campaign.

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I dunno. Like GW2, I discovered that I could throw money at AA and create level 50's like popcorn by buying chests, selling the rare drops, buying mats, and making a billion sleeves.

 

I hit level 50 with a stupid tailoring skill and top-tier gear before most folks had placed their first farm.

 

Then I started ganking every red I could find with impunity because I was twice their level and four times their gear.

 

Then i got bored and quit.

 

This is ironic but hysterically inevitable with any Pay 2 Win model. If you throw enough money at a game that allows you to win it that way, you get bored and quit.

 

Which is a bad idea for an MMO. MMOs with MMO budgets need to have long legs to pay for the sunk costs of development. If developers make an 'iWin' button worth 500 dollars or even more, they actually lose money.

 

If you don't buy the 500 dollar button, you don't get bored with the game, and pay the same money to them over the course of a couple of years. But during that time that you don't quit, you add value to the game. You are valuable. You and people like you form a community, you keep the game alive. So in addition to the subscription money you pay to the dev, you bring your friends to the game, who also stay in the game longer than they would have if you weren't around. So you are worth more than your money.

 

Wish more game developers (and their marketing overlords) would keep this in mind.

Greatswords for Frostweavers 2015! For great justice! And swords.

P.S. I like swords.

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This is ironic but hysterically inevitable with any Pay 2 Win model. If you throw enough money at a game that allows you to win it that way, you get bored and quit.

 

Which is a bad idea for an MMO. MMOs with MMO budgets need to have long legs to pay for the sunk costs of development. If developers make an 'iWin' button worth 500 dollars or even more, they actually lose money.

 

If you don't buy the 500 dollar button, you don't get bored with the game, and pay the same money to them over the course of a couple of years. But during that time that you don't quit, you add value to the game. You are valuable. You and people like you form a community, you keep the game alive. So in addition to the subscription money you pay to the dev, you bring your friends to the game, who also stay in the game longer than they would have if you weren't around. So you are worth more than your money.

 

Wish more game developers (and their marketing overlords) would keep this in mind.

 

The problem is, I think some games actually want to burn out rather than fade away. In some instances, they can cash out big fairly early on then close the doors before they really start losing money. In the case of many games that were brought over from Asia they buy the license, generally with a fee and then a monthly payment, they don't have the years of investment into the game, so they can go the route of selling a lot of stuff early and hoping to make bank and then cash out early on to save them from having to support the game for years after it become unprofitable. 

 

Though I have to say, I'm positive Raesh was exaggerating, by a lot. Most had large farms within a day or two (small farms within 10-15 minutes of head start launch), and the crafting wasn't nearly as fast as he makes it sound. But, if he really did work it like that, he was only a few days ahead of everyone else, and therefor decided to quit before he had any competition, which would have been less than a week into the games life. 

Edited by rhend

Rhend - SB - Hy'shen/Avari || Rhend - AA - LotD || Dynereir - SB - House Lok-ri || Magius/Amok - AC - Too many to list

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I'm assuming it is my lack of experience with these types of systems, but I personally don't see the value in trying to play the economy when real cash isn't exchanging hands.

 

How much ore, wood, armor, swords, piece of land, mine, etc are VIP or cosmetics worth? Obviously that will be determined by supply/demand, but I'd assume it will balance out where someone isn't going to trade their castle that took a month to build for 1 VIP or 10 or 20. Seems fairly counterproductive. If someone spends all their time gathering resources and what not to trade for VIP/Cosmetics, at what point do they actually get to play the game and take advantage of what they now have?

 

TF2 is probably the most popular game I've played where there are numerous in and out of game markets that deal with trading found, crafted, and cash shop purchased items. Relatively speaking, it all balances out for the most part. Sure "new" brings higher prices but they go down and no one is really making off like a bandit in virtual or real life goods (except the devs and players that create the actual items themselves).

 

There is nothing stopping trades from happening outside of game for real cash which would be a lot more of an issue from my POV. VIP status and what not seems like small potatoes and more of a hassle. Just like gold selling, power leveling, and whatever short cuts that are for sell in other games, seems like it would be a lot easier to skip the middle man (ACE) and just P2W in whatever way is possible.

 

If a guild wants to do all the work for 3 months and then at the last minute sell or allow another group to come in and claim victory, while those with cash to burn don't want to play and just want to come in to claim victory at a cost, I don't really see the harm to myself, personally. Either way I would of lost, simply traded victors. Not fair, but depending on how campaign joining/leaving works, I'd stay away from any server either were part of in the future. I'd hope that we or the devs would do what we could to make both sides have little enjoyment out of the deal.

Edited by Allein

 


 

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Going with your example:

 

Player A has real life money.

Player B has a sword.

Player C has nothing.

 

Player A buys VIP ticket or cosmetic items then trades for the sword to Player B. Player A goes out into the forest. Player C comes across Player A. Both Player A and Player C have equal skill. Player A wins because he bought a sword before Player C had a chance to gather materials and craft one himself. Player A won because he spent real money to trade for in-game items.

 

Player A has RL money.

Player B has a lot of time.

Player C has neither money, nor time, but wants to beat equal-skilled players, who have something. I'd say, he'd be better off with arena type games then, where everyone start in equal conditions.

 

Maybe Player C just need to obtain a sword for himself, before trying to be the best? To spend some time grinding for resources or currency or whatnot to exchange them for a sword, or craft one himself.

 

When I meet someone with big shining sword, I really don't care if the sword was made by himself, or he bought it for in-game currency, or exchanged for RL currency, or had cybersex with crafter in exchange for sword. The sword was made in the world, so it has the right to exist there and change owners.

 

It only matters in global scale, when big guild can get en edge, by buying a lot of resources. Even in that case, if those resources are excessive and are to be traded, they will be traded for anything else.

Edited by Gremour
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Going with your example:

 

Player A has real life money.

Player B has a sword.

Player C has nothing.

 

Player A buys VIP ticket or cosmetic items then trades for the sword to Player B. Player A goes out into the forest. Player C comes across Player A. Both Player A and Player C have equal skill. Player A wins because he bought a sword before Player C had a chance to gather materials and craft one himself. Player A won because he spent real money to trade for in-game items.

 

I think you may have misunderstood my post.

 

I actually agree with you in both of your examples.  Both are examples of paying to win.  What you are excluding from your post is the 2nd part of my original thread.  If you are in an environment where it is possible to lose everything you 'paid to win', then it *has the chance* to balance out.  Again it will be highly dependent on the devs implementing the right environment.  I am skeptical that it will actually happen purely because so many other games have tried and failed, but it is possible.

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My entire point though is, if you used cash in that game to get 10k gold, and I used my 6, 16x16 farms and my 24x24 to get 10k gold, and we both go to the auction house at the same time to buy gear, who really has an advantage? How is that P2W? 

 

I think it's more a point of interpretation.  Having played AA, and after reading the above portion of your post, that is the best example of why it is P2W or Pay to succeed.  You pay $14.99 a month and play your ass off in game to make that gold.  I am so in favor of that.  But, I can be a free player and open my wallet and do the same thing.  I never did anything in game to get that gold.  Then we both can compete for the crafted gear.  If I don't have to actually play the game (and by that I mean grind, craft, farm etc.) and can open up my wallet and get the same thing as you, that is P2W.  And that I hate.

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Pay to win in a pvp game is catastrophic. People with addiction to win will evolve addiction to spend. They ruin their own life. ACE so far have shown a very mature view so I doubt they would go this way. Is there any dev statement on how they define p2w and how they compare their current monetization model to it?

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