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Reader Comments (70)

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 9:10AM Rheem said

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There is a really simple way of implementing f2p into eve. Simply limit the quality of clones/insurance you can buy of a free account, with small one time purchases will get you up to the next level with the top few levels being reserved for subsribers.

This ensures free accounts stay weak but still useful and provides a valid reason to subscribe.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 11:12AM VikingGamer said

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This thread again? This very topic has been discussed over and over. On this site no less. The idea that Eve as it is currently structured could ever go free to play really makes me question if people have even bothered to play the game.

Eve, simply, is a very time centric game. Skill are learned in real time. Manufacturing happens in real time. Mining is done in logged in, real time at a particular rate based on what kind of mining skill the pilot has. Putting together big fleets takes time. Sending scouts forward takes time. The logistics of moving huge amounts of goods from empire to nullsec takes time and planning. Generating isk though missions takes time and becomes more efficient as you become more skilled over time.

See where I am going with this? The whole game is based off time. and this is why PLEX has any value at all in the economy. 400m (or so) gets you 30 days of access. How long does it take you to make 400m? for some it is well worth spending $15 real dollars to avoid the time it would take to make that much money. you pay for someone elses 30 days to get the cash. But that someone thinks that 400m is well worth it because they have the skill and knowledge of the game to be able to make that kind of case in just a few days. Boom they spent 5 days working to make the other 25 days free. but it is all based off time and efficiency.

None of this works if you can play for free. Skills can always be leveled if you can access the game for free. manufacturing can always be running if you can access the game for free. Eve has become the virtual embodiment of the idea that "Time is Money." Free access would turn that whole idea upside down.

I don't doubt seeing Dust 514 go free to play because the nature of that game, even as it is connected to Eve, will be completely different. Eve, however, will never, ever, go free to play. The amount of change they would need to make to the base game is simply too much. It wouldn't be the same game in any recognizable form.

Free to play is best done when the game is designed for that monetization model. Existing games usually have to be altered to some degree to pull off a switch to F2P. Eve is about the worst case scenario for free to play. It is just not going to happen.

What I can see happening however would be for them to allow people to buy SP for isk or cash. Time is Money. and in Eve Time translates into SP and isk. They have one side of that down. I predict that they will get the other side rolling before too very long. How? Game time has to be bought in order to skill up characters. What if there was a way you could distill a character back into SP and send it to another character? What if you could biomass your 10m SP Alt into a 5m SP Skill Chip that could be plugged into your main? or sold on the market? It is after all, just time put into a bottle.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 11:17AM Jorev said

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where have you been hiding ?
EvE already is a pay to win game since they allow players to buy time cards unlimited and trade them in-game for isk aka coinage.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 11:22AM (Unverified) said

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All MMOs should have a endless free trial. Beyond that, sub models make for better games if they are designed to be sub based.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 12:26PM Doran7 said

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no I don't think eve could ever go free to play in a way that would capture the heart of it's players.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 12:31PM Donau said

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A beautiful thing about the EVE model is it isnt like other MMOs, it wasn't built with a life cycle in mind.

Right now they are rolling out periodic implementation of their 3rd graphics iteration, how many MMOs overhaul their graphics once in their lifetime? Let alone three times.

Their approach to updating and adding to the content of EVE has worked brilliantly, over the years they have seen a pretty steady growth of their player base. The Noble Exchange was greed, and it cost them, they wanted immediate revenues when they should have been happy with their steadily growing one.

Their game appeals to a hardcore niche of players, going f2p would only alienate them, EVE never was and never will be a game for the casual main stream MMO player. For their business model they are doing it right, other games might find f2p works just find, but in EVE it won't.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 1:36PM Lateris said

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After the last protest I have to wonder what would happen if they did.

Posted: Jan 30th 2012 2:56PM Ardra Diva said

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I don't need F2P, all I ask is a chance to use that incredible avatar I created, but nobody ever gets to see (except a screencap icon).

Awesome high res avatar builder... now give me stuff for that avatar to do!

Posted: Feb 3rd 2012 6:57PM theBeast said

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I want this article deleted. Eve f2p?!? Shut your dirty mouth!!!

Posted: Feb 4th 2012 7:11AM starbuck1771 said

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@theBeast It may have to just to stay competitive.
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