captcrayon

How will steam help this game financially

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"The Future of the Game is Strong

I just got through listening to the team meeting for this week.  It was filled with many great things that the team is working on today.  It is truly great to hear the team speak of the future with such excitement.  While tomorrow is never a 100% sure thing, I am willing to bet that this team has the ability to make WWIIOL great again.


We are listening to you and your thoughts about the game today and the future.  Many items are being worked on that were born from the community.  Today I listened to how good things are coming together in many different areas and how the team is working to overcome obstacles that are in their way.


We have a very talented team that is working on the game today, and they are taking the game into a new direction and I believe that it will result in the game that the majority of us have dreamed of.  They are stabilizing the game and working on new content.  These two issues are the first step in moving us into the future.  The plan today takes us into next year and along that road we will see many great improvements along the way, along with the player base growing.

Your support is required to help the team here develop the game.  If you are playing the game for free today, you are risking the future of the game.  While I respect the free to play accounts, I also have to point out that they are only providing targets to the paying customers and must ask you to bump your subscription up to at least as starter account.  A Free to Play player is a great target, but the not only play the game for free but also cost to have.  The majority of the Rats are volunteers, yet while they work on the game you play for free, many of them have subscriptions to help fund the game.  Several are even builders.    We all can agree that this game will not survive is everyone is a Free player, it takes paying subscriptions to keep the game going and development happening.


That may sound harsh, but I must ask you why you are not willing to pay the low price of 4.99 for a starter account?  You obviously enjoy playing the game, if your enjoyment not worth 4.99 per month?  I know there are some who are financially not able to help fund the game, and I get that.


While the company is stable, it is important that we start planning ahead to reward the talented folks who work on this game for free or the few who could go anywhere else and make three-five times more.  You know if we averaged it out, I would be willing to bet those guys put in so many hours they are working for less than minimum wage.  The new team has done some amazing things to improve the game that you play.  The game only has a future due to their willing to utilize their professional skills for little to no money in return.


If you are a Free to Play player I ask that you become a Starter Account holder.  That little amount of money really is not that much.  If enough people do this, it will allow us to hire more programmers and speed up production on the game.


Every paid subscription does matter today in how fast the future will come to be today.  The more support we have, the faster we can get things accomplished.  Please consider raising your subscription to the next level if you possibility can.


I mentioned in the last community report that the Rats are about to meet for summit.  This will be a planning summit and discussions on many different areas of the game and how to improve it.  The Rats will be traveling in from all over the country, and I want to point out that they are paying their own way to make this happen.  The team feels that it is vital that they gather to discuss the many topics in person to help speed up the planning process and allow for them to organize the plans for the future.  I wanted to point this out only due to the fact that most of these guys have never received a paycheck for what they do for this game, and many of them have paid to be Hero Builders, and higher.  Yet they spend countless hours each week making this game better, and they are about to spend hundreds of dollars more out of their pocket to meet in one location to help make the game even better.


With that in mind I, I ask that if you can at all help fund this project more by raising your subscription by only a few dollars each month, it would greatly help the future of the game.   Like I said, we are stable today, and cover the costs of operation and so very little outside of the norm items, if you help just a little you will give us the ability to speed up production and do many more things that you would benefit from." - BADGER - Community report, Aug 23rd.

 

 

When I read the final statement from badger, I really want to thank everyone of the devs and badger and everyone for being honest and saying that this game though it's not run by a company is run by AWESOME individuals who are giving there 100% support to this game an really cherish it.  I too cherish this game a lot since I've been playing it ( literally started 3 weeks ago :) yeah i'm new, GAME ROCKS! ) this game is truly a gem that I can't get enough of and literally neither can anyone else haha.  I want thank all the devs ( what I call the people who work on the game )  for putting SO MUCH of their time and hard work into making this, what I truly see, Amazing Awesome game that has soooo much of a positive future it's exciting to always think about haha! Thank you all for everything and I can't wait to see where this game goes :)

 

On that note I have a question on the financial situation.  I know this game survives on us and everyone else who pays for this game and I understand that, But i'm confused on a future situation that I would like more information about and that has to do with STEAM.  Right now this game still has ways to go before they are absolutely ready for the steam release sometime in the future and that got me thinking on just that subject.  I realized that paying players are the only thing keeping this game going financially which Is not a bad or good thing but I want to ask this question. 

I would like to know how steam is going to help this game financially?  What i'm trying to say is since paying players keep this game going, and since the devs are getting this game ready for steam release, I would just like to know how the deal with steam is going to effect this game a financial point of view?  Forstarters is steam going to be giving  this community money to help out the game, is this deal with steam allowing steam to advertise this game and put it out there so people know that it exists?  Also are you devs preparing for the release of this game on steaming knowing there will be thousands of FREE players joining at first though a good portion will start paying?  What i'm trying to say is how is steam going to help the game on a financial point of view when so many players will be joining this game whenever the steam release is announced?  I'm going to start paying for this game soon so everyone knows,but I would just like to know how steam will effect this game in the future.

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It could be presumed that the higher exposure steam provides leads to a larger overall population.  

Assuming the current population is a reliable sample (and it should be) then with x# more subscriptions there will be y% that become paid subscriptions.  Those paid subscriptions allow for more coders/modelers/artists to be hired or contracted for development.  That development then either entices more to try the game, or some who aren't in the paid subscription tiers to sign up, which allows for more...............

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I don't want to seem pessimist but I really doubt steam will translate in better finances for WW2ol, the question will be how many players will try the game.

WW2ol is too hardcore, niche, has bugs, broken and opaque gameplay, most of the people that enjoy this game already played and found out about it.

I hope CRS is very careful and cautious the last thing they want is bad reviews, higher server bills and subscribers not able to log and enjoy the game. I hope they get into early access instead of being an actual released game, that might be safer to avoid negativity.. Warthunder is in "Open-beta" has arcade, realistic and simulator gameplay so they have a higher potential playerbase plus they have a better ballistic and damage model, over 700 vehicles including planes and tanks, significantly better graphics with good performance on lower systems, free to play and they are going to add Naval Forces by the end of the year.. they don't have infantry or a seamless campaign for now..

I tried playing WW2ol F2P past week or so and it's not fun, without binos it very hard to spot infantry and do pixel hunting, the MP 34 can't hit an enemy 40m away in center of your crosshair, you can use a tank or good atg and worst you can't even generate content for paying players like drive 251C to transport troops to CPs, make Fru's or drive paraplanes to make paradrops or glider missions.

Back in 2005 I had 15 or 30 day full access, I participated in Panzer Columns, Paradrops, Glider Missions, 251c Hot Drops and I was able to see a lot of the potential for the game it was with LMG that I learn to use the Rifle and the Stug to learn how to fight tanks maybe I play in a bad time but there was nothing like this going on or there were no players to support them.

 

In my POV the focus should be done on veteran and past players .. how many a 1/4 of a million? most payed or credit Card accounts..

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long time players that quit are tired of this game, the 1 month promotion in July was lots of fun but not all of them stayed. it'll be the same if they focus on existing or older accounts: small increase for a while then loose just as much to normal boredom.

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What steam will allow is for the game to be presented to a high number of possible customers at one time.  It will put the game in front of the biggest audience of possible new players.  It has been years in the making and we are still a ways out.  Several things have been talked about by Xoom on things that need to be accomplished before we go to Steam.  It would be easy to sit back and not take a risk and let the game just idle.  That is not something we are willing to do.  Yes we do have some high odds to overcome, but the challenge has been and will continue to be what motivates the team at CRS.  If the team wanted to take the easy road, they would of pulled the plug back in 2012. 

It is all about a percentage.  The more people that see the game, a percentage of them will look at the game, try the game, and out of that group a percentage will subscribe.  If we present it to 0 potential customers we will have 0 people sub to the game no matter how high the percentage is.  If we show it to 1,000 possible players, and 6% (really low number for marketing return,  worse case), that would be 60 people would try the game.  Of those 60, using worse case again 10% sub, we would get a return of 6 new players joining the game.  With the numbers of potential customers, plus the aide that Steam gives in marketing, the return on customers would be a good increase in player numbers.

Chances are that the Subscription plans will be modified to allow the best possible return both financially and player number wise. 

Hatch always used to point out that the game was like a bucket of water, and it had holes in the bottom.  Since day one it leaked out water, but the goal was to put more water into the bucket faster than what was leaking out the bottom.

Once again the game faces a choice for the future, it can sit and do nothing and be happy with the position it is currently in, or it can once again make bold choices and take a risk and hope that it pays off.  The history has proven that the game only lives when risks are taken.  We are taking steps to put our best possible foot forward with the limited resources that we have available.  We know we will have one shot at this and we want to make sure we give it the best possible chance for success.

 

 

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8 hours ago, captcrayon said:


That may sound harsh, but I must ask you why you are not willing to pay the low price of 4.99 for a starter account?  You obviously enjoy playing the game, if your enjoyment not worth 4.99 per month?  I know there are some who are financially not able to help fund the game, and I get that.

Nothing about what you said sounds harsh.  It sounds reasonable.  However, some of us feel that we have done enough to support  development.  I paid for one account for 15 years. I paid for a second account to go along with that one for 10 years.   I paid for the game when I knew I wouldn't play for 6 months at a time.  I paid for the sole purpose of supporting development.  I think I have showed enough loyalty.  Now I would like to see some results. I, as well as others, could pay for the game.  I chose not to because the game no longer lives up to my expectations.  I wish the Rats all the luck in the world.  I am open to bringing back both my accounts but I need to see some real change to entice me to do so.  In the mean time I am perfectly happy with a rifle.  The way I see it the Rats need to earn my business and my loyalty to the game through action.  You asked.  There is my answer.

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55 minutes ago, saroninf2p said:

Nothing about what you said sounds harsh.  It sounds reasonable.  However, some of us feel that we have done enough to support  development.  I paid for one account for 15 years. I paid for a second account to go along with that one for 10 years.   I paid for the game when I knew I wouldn't play for 6 months at a time.  I paid for the sole purpose of supporting development.  I think I have showed enough loyalty.  Now I would like to see some results. I, as well as others, could pay for the game.  I chose not to because the game no longer lives up to my expectations.  I wish the Rats all the luck in the world.  I am open to bringing back both my accounts but I need to see some real change to entice me to do so.  In the mean time I am perfectly happy with a rifle.  The way I see it the Rats need to earn my business and my loyalty to the game through action.  You asked.  There is my answer.

I totally agree that we must earn your trust and I do hope that we are currently on the right track and that the other players will give us the ability to get to the point that you are willing to help fund the game.  It has been a long road and your support in the past is also one reason we are here today.  The team who makes 0 off the game is busting their behind to try to earn your trust once again.  Yes there is maybe 5 of the 26 members who does get a little salary (and I mean very little) just to help reward them for their assistance of working on the game.  I understand and respect your thinking.   One day we will make you happy to help support the development by the new team, and until then I am glad that you are still getting enjoyment out of the game and when we do earn that support, we can all come together to celebrate the step that you felt was in the right direction.

 

Thank you for your response, I do appreciate it.

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the more complex financial decision or future modelling regarding the steam release and exposure to tons more (way younger) players, who may or may not try the game, and may or may not like it after they try it - is: 

> will there be enough new players who like it enough to pay a (low? steam like>?)  $4/5 or more (doubtful) a month to continue  and/or 

> can CRS (and is there enough time to) initiate more of a micro-transaction model with non-game influencing 'chrome' features like special uniforms, personae/looks, squad or other patches and decals, mini equipment bundles (like the old chinese wwii ol did), music packages,  or some combination of these two, or 

> create an ongoing stream of DLC which seems unlikely without more money or more staff

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7 hours ago, pbveteran said:

I don't want to seem pessimist but I really doubt steam will translate in better finances for WW2ol, the question will be how many players will try the game.

WW2ol is too hardcore, niche, has bugs, broken and opaque gameplay, most of the people that enjoy this game already played and found out about it.

I hope CRS is very careful and cautious the last thing they want is bad reviews, higher server bills and subscribers not able to log and enjoy the game. I hope they get into early access instead of being an actual released game, that might be safer to avoid negativity.. Warthunder is in "Open-beta" has arcade, realistic and simulator gameplay so they have a higher potential playerbase plus they have a better ballistic and damage model, over 700 vehicles including planes and tanks, significantly better graphics with good performance on lower systems, free to play and they are going to add Naval Forces by the end of the year.. they don't have infantry or a seamless campaign for now..

I tried playing WW2ol F2P past week or so and it's not fun, without binos it very hard to spot infantry and do pixel hunting, the MP 34 can't hit an enemy 40m away in center of your crosshair, you can use a tank or good atg and worst you can't even generate content for paying players like drive 251C to transport troops to CPs, make Fru's or drive paraplanes to make paradrops or glider missions.

Back in 2005 I had 15 or 30 day full access, I participated in Panzer Columns, Paradrops, Glider Missions, 251c Hot Drops and I was able to see a lot of the potential for the game it was with LMG that I learn to use the Rifle and the Stug to learn how to fight tanks maybe I play in a bad time but there was nothing like this going on or there were no players to support them.

 

In my POV the focus should be done on veteran and past players .. how many a 1/4 of a million? most payed or credit Card accounts..

We'll definitely be going early release and also reviewing our subscriptions so we do not end up in the situation you're referring to... us shooting ourselves in the foot trying to front the bill to a huge load spike and trying to figure out how to make it happen.

Now this part doesn't make us sound too amazing, but I am going to say it... I have seen some really, god awful games do pretty decent on there. We're building a bridge to being able to do more. We're going to release on Steam with the understanding the not everything is "fixed." We'll never have it all fixed, and to some degree there will be a continued clunkiness, though our effort is to do everything within our power to resolve that. But the gains to be had will help us and the bottom line to bring on more people, to increase velocity of production and achieving important objectives to ensure WWII Online's future.

Many players do not know about our game, and they will be amazed. That won't be everyone, and I don't expect a "Call Of Duty" return on finances, but I do expect the game to be healthier with more people, and utilizing the marketing power of Steam to attract new users in-mass that we cannot currently achieve.

Our veteran players are absolutely important and we'll keep them in mind. They will be happier with more people in the server, this is our best effort to make this really happen.

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The huge potential of the game players in China, increase the propaganda of the Chinese players, to attract more Chinese people

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Can't wait for those steam forums! Brings fond memories of the mmopg.com forums that you had to take down :)

I like this new team.  Don't [censored] me off by modding my highly relevant commentary.

 

Thanks

Oj 

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I have tossed in lots of cash for development when the calls have come out. I pay various subscriptions  (have since 2003, hero from the beginning)  to play the game and have fun.  In my mind I separate out development from the service of providing the everyday gaming experience, though I know they intersect each other.

That way I stay honest with myself about what I am willing to spend and why I am spending it and I don't get frustrated by what hasn't happened out side of actual game play (i.e. where's my new toys etc...).

Basically If I didn't enjoy the gameplay (aka service)  I would unsubscribe and stop playing. If I didn't think development was advancing I would stop my hero sub and funding donations.

If someone can't possibly pay or are just trying out the game, f2p seems reasonable, but otherwise when a person uses a service by a business,  they should pay for that service, development efforts aside. That's commerce. That's fair play. It keeps me from drinking too much of CRS's kool aid ;)

That's how it works for me anyway.  My mother (bless her soul) drilled it into me that you pay for what you use etc....guess the lecturing worked.  lol.

S!

ps... and i have a list of things about in game play that sometimes test my expectation levels no doubt, but for now I'll keep paying. lol.

 

 

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On 8/24/2016 at 5:37 PM, liukl said:

The huge potential of the game players in China, increase the propaganda of the Chinese players, to attract more Chinese people

They tried that, about 5, 6?, years ago. It was going to be the 'great savior', lots of Chinese players paying to play a Chinese version of the game (same map, but everything translated into Chinese, and on Chinese servers) . Even paying a very low monthly subscription, there would be SO many playing that it would make CRS financially secure.

There was a LOT of hype about it, and then... it all went mysteriously silent. I suspect the failure (whatever form it actually took) is what precipitated the financial meltdown of a few years ago. But it's never been spoken of again, so it's just a guess.

Don't get me wrong, I wish it HAD worked. The potential is audience is yuuuuge.

But like captcrayon, I'm worried that Steam won't be the panacea we all hope it will be.

I'm a Day 2 player (not Day 1 'cos it took the disk an extra day to get to NZ!), and, like others, I pay even when I know I can't, or won't, play. Simply because the potential this game has is unbelievable.  For that reason, I'm very pleased by Xoom's and Badger's responses, and I've got all my fingers and toes crossed. 

But I really do see Steam as CRS' last chance. If it doesn't work, I don't see them recovering. So they should take as much time as they need, 'cos, as far as Steam goes, CRS has to do it right the first time, 'cos they won't get another chance.

 

Oh yeah, if v2.0 gets native VR support, then I'm gonna need a stack of new pants every time i play.

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Five or six years ago and you did not take the initiative to attract, but the contradiction between the Chinese players and Chinese service providers, the beauty of the Chinese players arrived service to, at that time I also come over together. About your agency service providers in China, there are a lot of stories, summed up: arrogant, conceited, stupid, not as a player from 1000+ to now only 10 people, Chinese agent service providers have a great responsibility。

Those are the things that have happened before........
Talk about the situation of the Chinese players:
At present I can relate to the player about 100 people.
Senior players average age of about 40 years old, accounting for 80%
Is the beginning of 2010 in China, the server started in the senior players.
They all love this game, and have a deep understanding of the game.
Just because of dissatisfaction with the Chinese server vendors and dissatisfaction with the charges before leaving the game.
They have a desire to play in the United States.
Talk about the Chinese players to the United States to take the obstacles now
Speed problem: we have to be more than 20M bandwidth to be able to smooth the game.
Language: this game and other games, more is among his comrades, and built in the game's comrade in arms like friendship, and these need a lot of communication, language barrier made Chinese player servers in the United States can not find the sense of belonging even come in can only is skirmishers.
Or language problems: home page can not understand, recharge can not understand, the forum can not understand
Chinese player Service Specialist
Set Chinese home page

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On 8/24/2016 at 8:37 PM, liukl said:

The huge potential of the game players in China, increase the propaganda of the Chinese players, to attract more Chinese people

They are in fact a hot bed of gamers, however WWII Online isn't really built for "them." Like a lot of the market share today, people look for quick-fix / instant gratification type games. Attempting to mold this game into that was one of the major failures in our history, but it was certainly influenced by outside forces.

At its core, WWII Online is methodical, intentionally different from other games. It's niche to a high degree but it can still be very enjoyable by many if they are willing to invest the time to see its potential. 

I'm not all too familiar with Chinese law specifically pertaining to games but I'm pretty sure they have very strict laws, which is why our partner in China had his own company and server setup there. The game didn't do well in that market, so thinking of investing much time there with WWII Online... probably not a wise choice.

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5 hours ago, XOOM said:

They are in fact a hot bed of gamers, however WWII Online isn't really built for "them." Like a lot of the market share today, people look for quick-fix / instant gratification type games. Attempting to mold this game into that was one of the major failures in our history, but it was certainly influenced by outside forces.

At its core, WWII Online is methodical, intentionally different from other games. It's niche to a high degree but it can still be very enjoyable by many if they are willing to invest the time to see its potential. 

I'm not all too familiar with Chinese law specifically pertaining to games but I'm pretty sure they have very strict laws, which is why our partner in China had his own company and server setup there. The game didn't do well in that market, so thinking of investing much time there with WWII Online... probably not a wise choice.

Maybe something as simple as a Chinese language translation option for the website and in-game menu's might be a cost effective way to get those chinese players who would be willing to use the U.S. server? Let the few who do play now be the word of mouth liaison so no marketing required. Obviously building a translation algorithm into the chat box would be work, but at least the menu's could be converted without much time or investment. 

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HI All, 

Returning player here. See a few comments above about returning vets etc, and while I can't speak for everyone - I do know that amongst the few ex-players I still associate with outside of this game, the biggest talking point for us about potential returns/resubs is BALANCING. 

From recent emails recieved this is being addressed in a much more sensible way than in the past. Based on this 'promising' propaganda, I've resubbed for now. I know there's many others watching/listening for more info on how this will be addressed moving forward. 

My two cents. 

- P. 

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1 hour ago, praevus said:

HI All, 

Returning player here. See a few comments above about returning vets etc, and while I can't speak for everyone - I do know that amongst the few ex-players I still associate with outside of this game, the biggest talking point for us about potential returns/resubs is BALANCING. 

From recent emails recieved this is being addressed in a much more sensible way than in the past. Based on this 'promising' propaganda, I've resubbed for now. I know there's many others watching/listening for more info on how this will be addressed moving forward. 

My two cents. 

- P. 

Balance has been an issue since day one.  Many tries have been made to help with it and while some have helped, nothing has done so to a good enough level.  These new concepts that are being introduced will be a good strong try I believe and I think that they have a strong chance of helping.  The community has suggested these ideas and we are excited to see them in the game.

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Hopefully the steam release help the rats financially to where they can do more.

More importantly is a population increase potential. We need people....not just for $$ but for density.  Just last night in Grobbendonk I sat at the AB with a bofors and EA was nothing but drips and drabs where as in the heyday you would have had Allied Air Quake extraordinaire being so close to Antwerp AF.  I logged out the bofors and went Inf. :(

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I would do it like the game Rust on steam. Release Battleground Europe 2 Alpha version for a $20 download. Basically a port of this current game over to steam. Decide how many people your current server can handle at once divide it in half and have an allied queue and a axis queue. That way at max server cap the sides would be balanced offer all the toys and a jump to the front of the queue line for all those paying the $15 month plans.

The first thing I would redo is the AO system, make each AO be a town pair axis/allied and last 6 hours or until one side capped the other town completely. Then the winning HC would decide where the next AO pair would be announced or CPU if no HC online there would be a 5 min ish break to rtb and get ready on attack and defense in the next AO before the table went hot.

I think that would be the best option for new players and vets to get the game going again. Free to play players after the intial $20 download would have to wait in queues and be capped at say level 3 gear but I would let them cap tables in the alpha. That is how I would immediately progress this game to steam.

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The F2P isn't an enjoyable experience and from what I've seen no one at CRS is concerned with making it better. So the predictions of a big influx of subscribers from simply being listed on Steam are really optimistic. I don't see any reason to believe that a Steam release will be more successful than the last WBS where a great many returning and new players didn't even last a full campaign before leaving. There are plenty of games on Steam that don't have anyone playing them so playerbase isn't guaranteed.

 

Also I'm not sure if this game community here is prepared to make the sell to the average Steam user,  you give them the current gameplay at the current price point and the negative reviews will make the worst diatribe here look like gentlemanly criticism.

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6 hours ago, david01 said:

The F2P isn't an enjoyable experience and from what I've seen no one at CRS is concerned with making it better. So the predictions of a big influx of subscribers from simply being listed on Steam are really optimistic. I don't see any reason to believe that a Steam release will be more successful than the last WBS where a great many returning and new players didn't even last a full campaign before leaving. There are plenty of games on Steam that don't have anyone playing them so playerbase isn't guaranteed.

 

Also I'm not sure if this game community here is prepared to make the sell to the average Steam user,  you give them the current gameplay at the current price point and the negative reviews will make the worst diatribe here look like gentlemanly criticism.

In one way I agree with you, F2P is NOT an enticing experience if you are not gobsmacked by the whole Big Battle/War thing.  They don't give it a chance, they don't convert to subs.

 

On the other hand, there has to be a reason to pay, at some point the superior equipment has to be behind a paywall, and if too many items are F2P, the Rats gut the existing paybase who just then switch to F2P permanently because everything they want is there.

 

So, criticism is easy, architecting solutions is hard- where do you draw the line with the different accounts to achieve both objectives?

 

 

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5 hours ago, Kilemall said:

In one way I agree with you, F2P is NOT an enticing experience if you are not gobsmacked by the whole Big Battle/War thing.  They don't give it a chance, they don't convert to subs.

 

On the other hand, there has to be a reason to pay, at some point the superior equipment has to be behind a paywall, and if too many items are F2P, the Rats gut the existing paybase who just then switch to F2P permanently because everything they want is there.

 

So, criticism is easy, architecting solutions is hard- where do you draw the line with the different accounts to achieve both objectives?

 

 

Not that I would like this AT ALL but......... a cash shop for F2P people only.  Want a T3 Tank.....? Ok $2.00.  Oops.....you got blown up in 5 min? Cha ching.......another $2.00.  In the long run it would be cheaper to sub.

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If you're worried about he financial future of this game... then pony up! "Free Play Account"?? Seriously?? It's $5 ffs!

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The main advantage the paying players would have is not having to wait in the queue to get into the game the gear is a second benefit. I am thinking the server would probly be okay with 400 total players so 200 axis 200 allies once you approach 200 for either side the FTP gets put into a queue where as the paying players would go right into the game. Of course if the allies have 190 and the axis have 150 the FTP could immediately join axis or wait in a queue to play allied.

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