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Agra

Tera goes F2P, too

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Soon all games will be either using the Hybrid model or the GW2 buy to play model. Sub only games are dying out and will soon be a thing of the past.

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Nah there will be few sub mmoprg's left. 1-2 indie + 1-2 borderline mainstream ones. Ones that are tailored toward specific playerbase and gameplay.

TERA going f2p is totally not surprising. It's not only Europe. It goes f2p in NA also + it recently went f2p in Korea, which is not surprising cause it failed horribly in Korea. (relatively as it was biggest hyped game there since Aion).

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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.

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Well there will be definately more mmorpg's failing in 2013 and 2014 than before. By failing I mean either shutting game down or going into maintenance-like mode. Not only mmorpg's in west are bleeding players to various lobby multiplayer games like LoL, Wot, Vindictus, C9 soon Neverwinter and Dota 2, etc but also mmorpg market is even more oversaturated than it was in last years. Smaller amount of butter is spread over more and more bread.

Still most mmorpg players don't want to pay sub and most mmorpg's on the market are not types of game that people would pay mandatory sub for. Most mmorpg's are like single player games + lobby multiplayer. That kind of game design is nothing bad in itself, but it is not something most people would pay mandatory sub for.

Initially people have paid subs because mmorpg's were special type of games - virtual worlds. Later on people have and still do pay mandatory sub for WoW because it is inertion. Snowball effect - they invested so much into it and it is still such huge success that people agree to pay mandatory sub for WoW even though it is not much more than LFG lobby multiplayer game - as exception though.

People who agree to pay mandatory sub for mmorpg generally are looking for something more than another co-op instance game. Those players are those who're against LFG tools when some mmorpg incorporate one, which are against game going microtransaction based, those which are against lore-breaking game additions, those who cry after more non-combat features and so on. They are miniority. I am miniority.

Of course that is generalization and simplification for discussion sake.

Anyway - I don't want to pay a sub. I DID choose to pay a sub, because alternative ruin my game / gameplay /immersion and so on. On the other hand I simply won't pay a sub for what is basically lobby matchmaking instanced game with single player component. This is what most mmorpg's are AND other types of mmorpg's are not liked by majority. Lack of LFG matchmaking, longer than very fast levelling, danger in open world, crafting that is enjoyable by miniority and not conveniant side-mini-game for everyone, player stores, luck and unpredictability, travelling and so on - are called time-sinks by majority even is that is a game for minority.

Some of those features / design choices was also present in older Lotro. It was not an accident.

Mandatory sub model won't surive as model for majority of games. It already is not. Sub model started as something that was used in those few games that were borderline mainstream (first mmorpg's) and most games did not use it and most gamers when heard about it - they shake their heads with disbelief. I was one of those people as well - I could not believe that someone might actually pay sub for a game.

It might and propably sooner or later will - survive as model for those few games that are profilled for specific niche. If that niche will be big enough then there will be place for 1-2 mainstream titles with sub also. Of course they still will be smaller and less known than biggest f2p behemots.

Sorry for rant. I will try to keep my ranting in check from now on as they are kinda pointless, I realized once I did finished this post.

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Just curious but which mainstream MMOs other that WoW still work on the subscription model?

Rift is one doing quite well. But I read somewhere that Rift opened in South Korea (I think) and made a huge stash of cash from this. So when I think about Turbine vs. Rift, I always think Rift is more like WoW in that they have enough money to spend on a decent game.

I think in the US Rift is doing pretty well. They shrank a lot in pop. but a lot of people came back for the Xpac.

Back on topic, I think there are plenty who would pay $10 a month for a good game, but I agree its getting harder with all the free and good alternatives out there.

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Rift is one doing quite well. But I read somewhere that Rift opened in South Korea (I think) and made a huge stash of cash from this. So when I think about Turbine vs. Rift, I always think Rift is more like WoW in that they have enough money to spend on a decent game.

I think in the US Rift is doing pretty well. They shrank a lot in pop. but a lot of people came back for the Xpac.

Back on topic, I think there are plenty who would pay $10 a month for a good game, but I agree its getting harder with all the free and good alternatives out there.

Rift went F2P in Korea a month or so ago because it never really caught on there, so Trion made the change to save the investment in that market. I don't think Rift itself needs to go F2P or B2P, but Trion is showing signs of financial instability, after laying off 40 staff just before Christmas. It seems End of Nations is dragging down the company, and they are trying to make deadlines to get Defiance out by April (to match with the TV show coming out on SyFy), so these external pressures could force Trion to take Rift F2P for the increased income. I hope they don't go that path, but it is possible.

In the end, aside from WoW (which is an aberration in the MMO market), it is possible we will see the end of the Subscription model in the next couple of years. Some will hail this as the industry coming to their senses, others will see this as the end of the industry.

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Interesting - thanks for the info on Trion. I hope they can stay afloat. Hopefully they made money with the recent expansion. It would be nice to see some company make a good game and keep it sub-based.

Somehow Rift was able to invest a lot of money in development - which is why the expansion was so full, and they have been able to make constant improvements to the game. But again, I am only a sub and very casual player of Rift - I think you have much more info and know the pulse of the game better than me. I haven't logged in for a few months.

In the end, aside from WoW (which is an aberration in the MMO market), it is possible we will see the end of the Subscription model in the next couple of years. Some will hail this as the industry coming to their senses, others will see this as the end of the industry.

It does seem like we are at the end of the era of MMOs as we knew them. Seems like players are scattered all over (GW2, Rift, WoW, Lotro, etc.). I wonder if any company can put out a good game, and keep the income coming in (and keep players there). Seems like SWTOR and TSW were fails (but maybe TSW will survive).

I wonder where the makers of GW2 got all their money to make such a full game.

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I wonder where the makers of GW2 got all their money to make such a full game.

GW1 profit

Sadly for me there is little on the horizon in the world of MMOs that has me that excited, GW2 and LotRO* are keeping me entertained for now but I don't see much coming up that I would be that interested in.

*Yes after buying Rohan after almost a year out of the game I find I have a lot to do, perhaps that is how to keep LotRO fresh, take year long breaks?!

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I wonder where the makers of GW2 got all their money to make such a full game.

Arena.net is part of NCSoft so they got their money there. Same as Bioware got money for Swtor from EA.

Of course GW1 success propably helped convince NCSoft HQ that investing millions in GW2 might be profitable.

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I decided to try TERA. Took me nearly 12 hours solid to download their enormous client. I logged in, spent about half an hour in their starter area then logged out and uninstalled it.

It looks very nice but the interface is woeful (as far as I'm concerned anyway). It's one of those games where the view is bound to the mouse movement till you hit ESC to free the mouse so you can use it to click on interface options. Then you hit ESC again so you can move your character and find the mouse is locked to movement again. It's horrible. Such an awkward UI when it comes to trying to remap keys and such things as well, we seem to be going backwards in UI development these days.

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I decided to try TERA. Took me nearly 12 hours solid to download their enormous client. I logged in, spent about half an hour in their starter area then logged out and uninstalled it.

It looks very nice but the interface is woeful (as far as I'm concerned anyway). It's one of those games where the view is bound to the mouse movement till you hit ESC to free the mouse so you can use it to click on interface options. Then you hit ESC again so you can move your character and find the mouse is locked to movement again. It's horrible. Such an awkward UI when it comes to trying to remap keys and such things as well, we seem to be going backwards in UI development these days.

I felt the same when I first tried it. it does take quite some getting used to. I nearly sacked it off as a bad job. By the time I'd played through the incredibly dull starter island, I'd somewhat got used to it and now I'm in my mid 40s the interface doesn't bother me at all. I'm much rather take it this way and have reticule combat than not. I can see why Tera wouldn't be for everybody but it has one of the most generous / most unobtrusive F2P implementations I've seen, and the servers are always packed. The quest variety is pretty poor, but is more than made up for by the quality combat imo.

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MMO companies need to stop wasting the day that the (potential) customer wants to try their game.

Same thing happened to me with TSW. By the time that stupid thing was installed the weekend was gone (added to by Amazon stupidity who offered the game for download but all you downloaded as a zipfile was a license key).

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MMO companies need to stop wasting the day that the (potential) customer wants to try their game.

Same thing happened to me with TSW. By the time that stupid thing was installed the weekend was gone (added to by Amazon stupidity who offered the game for download but all you downloaded as a zipfile was a license key).

Tera's client is huge ( about 26GB or so ), but they have a streaming version which allows you to start playing after only downloading a couple of GB. The rest downloads in the background while you're playing and doesn't affect the gameplay.

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How is Tera as you level up? I played the first 10 levels and got bored. If the dungeons were good I might find it worth it - but I am not so sure it has much to draw me. Kind of generic questing right? How are the PvP battlegrounds?

Seems like SWTOR and TSW were fails (but maybe TSW will survive).

SWTOR seems to make a lot of mistakes - but I would think they could improve the game and save it. I wonder if it is really dead - although it seems like a pretty bad MMO at this point - except for the story. Never played it (yet).

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How is Tera as you level up? I played the first 10 levels and got bored. If the dungeons were good I might find it worth it - but I am not so sure it has much to draw me. Kind of generic questing right? How are the PvP battlegrounds?

SWTOR seems to make a lot of mistakes - but I would think they could improve the game and save it. I wonder if it is really dead - although it seems like a pretty bad MMO at this point - except for the story. Never played it (yet).

It's not that bad. I would also not say SWTOR is dead, it's pretty busy on my server.

Yes, people complain about how restrictive f2p is, but then, they're getting to play a game for free, with no need to buy planets(unlike the LOTRO regions) to be able to do missions on them.

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It's not that bad. I would also not say SWTOR is dead, it's pretty busy on my server.

Yes, people complain about how restrictive f2p is, but then, they're getting to play a game for free, with no need to buy planets(unlike the LOTRO regions) to be able to do missions on them.

Yeah, the SWTOR F2P is how I imagined F2P would be: allows you to play the entire game, but has enough restrictions that it makes far more sense to just subscribe.

Then again, I guess the point of the F2P model is not so much to get people to subscribe as it is to get them to spend more than they would if they did subscribe - at least, that seems to be the point of Turbine's F2P model.

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Nothing wrong with a non-greedy trial type F2P model. I can't complain about SWTORs model. If I like the game I am happy to spend a sub fee each month, or for a few months. And the F2P there lets me see if I like the game.

I also think WoW trial is very generous. You get a very full game for free - with working dungeon finder, full crafting, full not-gimped PvP. Or course it is limited by level, but the free version is pretty fun. This is the 3rd time I have played free for a few months and had a blast doing PvP, twinking via crafting, and running dungeons. All in a world that works very very well (good bag space, no lag, great combat and PvP, good reputation systems, etc.). As a casual often-solo player even free its a pretty good game.

The greedy, make you grind and shop model of Lotro is not the only way to do it. I guess even Tera is an example of a better F2P model (as many have said here).

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I'm wary of even starting f2p games like WoW or Tera as I'm afraid I'd want to continue but not have the cash to spend on it. :P

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Honestly, I don't see how Tera make their money, unless it's mainly off cosmetics and mounts ( there are enough people runnng around in store bought cosmetics so they must be making something on it ).. All the content / dungeons are free, and even the storage can be unlocked with ingame gold. I haven't seen one store popup since I've been playing, I'm actually starting to feel guilty for not buying something already, but i've had no need to. I intend to carry on playing, but even if not, I'd happily buy something before quitting to support it because I've had a lot of fun out of it. It's not a game I'd want to play for 12 hours straight, but it's great fun in bursts of a few hours once you get past the mindless intro which takes about 4 hours or so and get's you to lvl 11.

Here's the F2P chart.

http://tera.enmasse....-while-it-s-hot

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@montyburns

It's diffrent model. If I had to guess which route TERA will go then I would guess that It will be lockboxes and various things for end-game gear enchanting process implemented once playerbase is seriously invested in game. I would guess it's not in cash shop yet as TERA transition was made recently.

In Aion USA f2p - in example there is thing called manastone socketing.

http://gameguide.na.aiononline.com/aion/Manastones

"Socketing armor and weapons gives you a wide variety of attributes that will affect your character. These effects can be anything from extra health or mana, to how often you critically hit or how accurate you are. These items can be found on most creatures throughout Atreia and, in some cases, can be traded in for other manastones by a repeatable quest."

"Note: If the socketing fails, the manastone used will be lost. Also, if the item had any manastones previously placed on it those will be lost as well. A confirmation will appear to make sure you wish to attempt adding the additional manastones."

What cash shop offers is things that ensure manasocketing success or other cheaper ones that increase it's chance, etc + lockboxes obviously + other CS items

http://store.aiononline.com/store/index?categoryPath=1_2_96

That is usually what 'f2p' mmorpg's go for eventually.

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@montyburns

It's diffrent model. If I had to guess which route TERA will go then I would guess that It will be lockboxes and various things for end-game gear enchanting process implemented once playerbase is seriously invested in game. I would guess it's not in cash shop yet as TERA transition was made recently.

You may well be right with this, the devs have promised not to go down the pay to win route, but i think it's inevitable to some extent. I do think though that if Tera can maintain or increase the huge number of players they have, they won't need to sell out their principles due to the sheer amount of people using the store for fluff. Of course that doesn't rule out them getting greedy on top of that, but it looks good so far, but it is early days as you say......

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