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Reader Comments (5)

Posted: Oct 6th 2008 7:47PM Ozmodan said

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I think the big thing this blog missed is retention figures. I have played a lot of free to pay (f2p) games and the retention rates are pretty low. Sticking around for two months usually makes someone a vet because not many do. Most of the subscription games have much better retention numbers.

Now I will admit, none of these f2p games have near as much content as any of the subscription games so who knows if this were to change with better content.

Secondly, since there is a cash shop, it tilts the scale to those that have extra money to spend. Personally most people I know don't like that one bit. It ruins the sense of accomplishment when someone else can achieve things simply by spending more money.

Personally if I can't play the game for free, I don't play it. Some of the f2p have restrictions that make playing for free rather onerous, I avoid those. It is just far too easy to run up a big bill on one of the f2p games. Some of the cash shops are quite expensive.

Some companies are mixing the two payment methods successfully. CCP has been allowing timecards to be sold for isk(in game monitary name) through their website. Since money has no effect on advancing your character, this has been readily accepted by the playerbase.

It is most certainly a hotly debated topic, but I will say this. Blizzard feels the subscription model is the more profitable method and they certainly are proving it. I would say that is pretty good proof that the blog is flawed.



Posted: Oct 6th 2008 11:10PM wjowski said

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...Retention numbers don't strike me as all that important for free-to-play games.
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Posted: Oct 7th 2008 9:19AM Aen said

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I played many F2P games. ALl of them kept me for a very short time. They have a lack of polish, updates, content and force you to buy from their "malls" just to enjoy the game.

I will only play a subscription based games. They come out with regular HUGE expansions, polished content, bug fixes, and general care and listen to their players.

Show me a F2p game that has as much content as EQ2 or WoW and i may change my mind.

Posted: Oct 15th 2008 1:55PM (Unverified) said

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Atlantica Online is pretty impressive for a free game. It's currently in beta, but if the design doesn't change appreciably, there's nothing that you have to buy to play the core game, or even to stay competitive. The "cash shop" items are frills or boosters that aren't necessary to play.

Puzzle Pirates is absolutely brilliant, and can be played without ever spending a dime. Their dual-currency microtransaction economy cuts RMT off and gives that demand to the company rather than a third party. There is no part of the game that you are required to spend money for. Success in-game is dependent on player skill, pure and simple.

As for the cash shop concept, it seems to me that the biggest problem is one of self control; players don't have it. Certainly if the game mechanics are heavily skewed to the player with cash, it's bad design, but ideally, a balance should be struck where players can achieve the same success whether they pay in time or in money.

Posted: Nov 9th 2008 4:03AM (Unverified) said

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well,we can all wait and see when EA's Battlefield Heroes becomes playable. With their f2p model and micro transactions, though u wouldn't gain any advantage over other players except for aesthetics and faster leveling for casual and pro gamers.

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