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Everything posted by Hajile

  1. Anybody got the Benny Hill theme music in their heads whenever they read of yet another publisher joining the F2P chase? It's turning into a real farce. They're going to have an awful lot of egg on their faces when the F2P bubble finally bursts and they have nothing left to fall back on. I'd find it amusing if there weren't hundreds of talented people losing their jobs in that scenario, all because some morons gave the money men too much sway over the creative process.
  2. The whole 'Pay to win' debate is largely subjective, so I won't comment on that. What I can say is that LOTRO is still okay as far as basic gameplay goes, but there is a huge amount of baggage attached to the game as a whole, both in and out of the store. It will cost you nothing to try it out, whereas Guild Wars 2 requires a box purchase. However, if money is a concern, LOTRO's pricing model means that although its entry price is lower, it's likely that it will ultimately be a more expensive game for you to play. GW2 is also a far superior game, so I'd recommend you go for that one.
  3. The entire point of F2P, as it is sold to the players, is not to reduce or increase the cost of the game to the player. It is to give the player an alternative option regarding how they choose to pay, making first entry into your game less costly and a continued stay more attractive. If you intend to hold true to that ideal and not immediately see dollar signs and trip over your own avarice, my suggested business model is quite a reasonable one. It breaks down the cost of the player's sub for the likely length of his time in the game and instead of demanding payment of that as a rigid and periodic fee, it puts the time and frequency of the payments in the hands of the player. It still bottlenecks his progress so the payments are necessary, but it does so in a much looser fashion. They will ultimately spend a similar amount of money as a subscriber to get the same benefits, but they have control over how often and how quickly they make those payments. We keep getting told that the main obstacle to some players' investment in MMOs is that they find paying X instalments of £X.99 on the Xth of every month unappetising or daunting. This would be an appropriate solution to that without compromising the integrity or the ethos of the game. Everyone who plays would be equally invested in the game, and it wouldn't matter to you which way the player chooses to spend, because either way gets them to the same position.
  4. Everything you mention is what is wrong with the entire F2P model.
  5. There would be no need for other levels other than sub or free - that sort of pullaver is unnecessary dicking in order to obfuscate a dodgy pricing model or to compensate for former subscribers who might otherwise feel cheated. Neither would apply in this hypothetical scenario. Pricing for the F2P unlocks would have to be calculated using figures I'd need a research team to obtain. I can't be bothered to do it myself, but presumably it'd be a simple matter of working out the average length of time a subbed player will remain subbed for and the cost of maintaining a monthly sub for that length of time. Then setting prices in store for the permanent unlocks to all things cut-down for F2P to come to a total slightly greater than the cost of maintaining a sub for that length of time. All while nudging your F2P players in the direction of picking up the sub option, which would always remain the more cost effective way to play.
  6. I dunno. Whatever would be standard rate at that hypothetical time in the future, I suppose.
  7. If it absolutely had to be F2P, I would set the cost for subscribers for every item on the store to zero. You maintain a sub, you get everything at no additional cost to yourself. The only exception should be full expansions, which would be bought outside the game store and via your game account page in your browser. This would encourage the designers of the game to avoid inserting anything too advantage-based, such as stat tomes, store potions, starlit crystals, etc, as those things would be free ad infinitum to subscribers and as such if they were available sub-based players would gain such an advantage over non-subscribers it would be ridiculous. To compensate for folks who may think they can sub for a month, buy everything they need and then drop to F2P, I would build into the game a three-tier ownership system - a third option which labels anything a sub player buys at zero cost as 'rented' so that if they drop their sub all zero-cost items they have bought are locked and are no longer available to them. The player can then regain access to the items by either purchasing the at-cost versions as a F2P player, or by resubscribing to the game, whereupon their 'rented' version becomes valid again and they can use it once more.
  8. Wrong again, chum. To "prove" your opinion you'd have to demonstrate that there is no positivity at all here, which is precisely the claim that you're making and is one we've already resoundingly debunked. That you persist in making these inaccurate observations might say more about your point of view than ours. While you're mentioning the first page, it must have escaped your notice that it's currently home to a thread devoted to nothing more than people wanting to show off their lovely Warsteed mounts. People here seem to enjoy and want to share the creativity the cosmetic system affords the player. Oops, I guess that thread was discounted due to your confirmation bias. This forum is not full of people with an "emotional bias" either. People here tend to be cynical because, well, we have a lot to be cynical about, and there is no better outlet for us to voice that cynicism, as the official channels have made it clear they're not interested in receiving that sort of feedback. The only thing we ask here is that people come here with their facts straight. People who don't are rapidly corrected, as you are finding at the moment. If you'd like more corroboration of that, you need only look at earlier in this very thread, when I said something speculative about the reason for Kate Paiz's absence and the helpful folks of this forum advised me that I was wrong and it was merely due to her maternity leave.
  9. Feel free to soldier on maintaining your patently inaccurate claims. You're free to do so here. Funny, that.
  10. It's frequently mentioned by many, Doro included, that the worldbuilding in LOTRO is for the most part very well done and that their art and design departments are exceptionally talented. That's just one example off the top of my head. We're all very happy to give credit where it's due. Regrettably in LOTRO's case it's not due very often. Your outrage is noted, but unfortunately it is misplaced. You're welcome.
  11. Possibly because regardless of whether the changes are "good" or not, you have already paid once with the cost of your subscription. A subscription that pre-monetization would have bought you access to everything, including any revamp to the housing system. The question that you should ask yourself in response to your previous one should be "Why am I happy about paying for things twice?"
  12. Paiz has been effectively MIA for about six months now, barring a few interviews. It wouldn't be too far fetched to assume that Aaron Campbell has been running the show for a while and they've pulled another Steefel and changed the person in charge sneakily behind the scenes and without telling anyone. Either that or Campbell has been handed the role of game figurehead because Paiz's enormous ego means she won't condescend to address us shiftless proles any more than absolutely necessary.
  13. Note the strategic use of open-ended and non-specific positive language. "Highest rated," for example. What does that even mean when you don't define what rating you're talking about? It's meaningless. Worse, it's disingenuous language designed to sound superficially upbeat and reassuring in order to placate the more credulous members of their market enough to keep them spending money. Hmm. Placate the credulous and keep them spending money. Turbine's modus operandi for the last several years. Turbine's press releases and official statements are full of this sort of thing. If they had anything genuinely positive to note, they would not be using this transparently insincere language.
  14. I once applied for a job at Jagex, makers of Runescape. I hobbled the length of the UK on a broken ankle, dragging myself on crutches I could barely use, ankle still bandaged up, to attend the interview at great personal expense. They didn't even ask me to stick around for the second stage of the interview in the afternoon. Their reason? I "didn't give them the impression I wanted the job enough." Jagex and all their games can kiss my arse. Worse than Turbine. Not that I'm bitter.
  15. No problem. Sorry, bad day at the office. Shouldn't take it out on folks when I get home. Now I feel like a dad who beats his kids.
  16. If it was, I cheerfully withdraw my previous comments and apologise. If not, I shall continue to shake my fist at Brrokk and say "grrr" under my breath.
  17. We tolerate a lot of behaviour from a lot of people round here, Brrokk. Calling us all liars, even if it's only heavily implied rather than outright stated, is not going to win you any friends. Unless you're not here to be friendly and are just here to mouth off and make trouble, ofc.
  18. I enjoyed it. It's not as good as LOTR, but that's mostly just because The Hobbit isn't as good as LOTR. The pacing was ponderous and took a while to get going, but hey, that's Tolkien for you. Most of his fans consider it one of his strengths. Loved the background on dwarven history, etc. Erebor looked magnificent. Radagast's Bunny sled? Meh. I'm chalking it down to tomfoolery for the kids, put into a film that's based on a book a bit heavier on the tomfoolery. Didn't like it, the film didn't need it, and it certainly could have been done in a less rubbish way, but I'm not going to whinge about it. And I kind of liked Sebastian the Hedgehog. I hope the little guy reappears. With the exception of Thorin, who was excellent, the easy standouts for the dwarves so far are Balin and Dwalin. Avuncular and badass respectively, they were the epitome of dwarvishness in all the ways that Gimli should have been in the previous films had he given him the screen time to do it. The rest of the dwarves seemed to be there for background colour for the most part, although I guess more will be done with them in the second and third movies. I expect that Ori, Dori, Nori and Bifur will be mostly relegated to providing supporting flavour to scenes, rather then get any time in the spotlight themselves. I was disappointed that Oin, Gloin and Bombur got so little to do. Bombur's role will likely pivot around the Laketown section of the second film, so it's acceptable his role in this one be diminished a bit. But I think an opportunity was missed with Gloin, however. It wouldn't have been a stretch to envision him as an excessively proud dad to the young Gimli who won't stop banging on about his son back home, to the irritation of the other dwarves. Fili and Kili get a bit of material and their roles will doubtless grow, but the most pleasant surprises for me were the few scenes that James Nesbitt's Bofur managed to wrestle from the ensemble, simply because Nesbitt is always a joy to watch. I hope his 'earnest japester' performance gets more substantial material in the later films. My fear that the film would be a mess of comedy bearding on the part of the dwarves turned out to be unfounded. There was a bit of slapstick here and there and a few pratfalls, but for the most part the comedy and the drama were pitched and balanced very well. It conveyed that the dwarves are a bunch of guys who enjoy having a laugh, but carry with them a serious melancholy and longing for their quest to succeed. Very nicely played all round.
  19. Drul, you make an interesting point, and one that didn't occur to me before. In fact, if I were in charge of an MMO developer in dire straits, desperately needed a short-term boost to my profits, didn't have the time, money or resources to develop a new game and just happened to have an already-finished one lying around not doing anything, I'd probably relaunch it as well. If I could do so at next to no cost, what harm could it do?
  20. Could be their new MMO is Asheron's Call 3, and they are resurrecting AC2 to boost the market perception of the IP. May also help their marketing if they can say "sequel to two successful MMORPGS of the past" instead of "one did well and the other crashed and burned."
  21. I would steer clear of that topic, mate. It's a can of worms that has been opened before and tends not to end well. Celestrata refers to herself as a woman, and would prefer to be addressed in that way. That's all we need to know, and the intricacies of her gender, or anything else about her personal life, are irrelevant. Whether you respect her or not, everyone should extend her the courtesy of addressing her in that way out of basic human decency. If a person refuses to do so, all they really achieve is to lower the platform from which they themselves argue. People dislike Celestrata because of what she does in relation to LOTRO, nothing more. Anything about what she does beyond that should be completely off limits, and rightly so.
  22. Oh, good grief. Getting really tired of saying I told you so. That, ladies and gentlemen, when pared down to the bare essentials is the inherent problem with F2P systems - they encourage the developers to actually make their games worse in order to sell items on an in-game store. Not to release bad games in error, or because they couldn't finish the game, or because of poor management, or any number of reasons that would explain a developer putting out substandard material. No, now they do it on purpose, because they know they can chisel the player for the fixes as well. Gone are the days of developers simply striving to make the best game they possibly can, because the player would not settle for anything less than their best efforts. Now they are deliberately designing their games to be shite, so they can hawk make-the-game-less-shite items to the players, above the cost of the game itself. And the customer base is applauding it! That's the most bewildering thing. They're actually convinced that it's not a really, really bad thing for developers to be behaving in this way. In fact, the players have welcomed it en masse, partly because they've fallen for the sales pitch, but mostly because they are largely nothing more than a rabble of undiscerning imbeciles who are either too stupid or apathetic to realise that the joke is on them. Well congratulations to all those players. They've successfully sabotaged their own pastime, the shower of idiots.
  23. Well, cor blimey. That's really odd. So 'membership points' expire, but ones you buy separately don't? Sounds like unnecessary complication of a relatively simple system to me.
  24. As far as I can see Funcom points do not expire, but I could be wrong I suppose. If there is something that states the contrary I'd be interested in a link to read up on it myself. Apparently it's the bonus points that people were awarded for beta testing etc that expire. Those are held separate from your Funcom points though.
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