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      New Forum Lead!   11/17/2019

      It's with great pleasure to announce B2K as the new Forum Lead.   I am very confident he will be good for the forums, he has great ideas and direction for the future of the forums.
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Boudreau

Just a reminder

110 posts in this topic

@delems It’s not working. We have tried since 2012 to get this to work. As we are doing internally, it’s time to get brutally honest about how this has all played out. And don’t say CRS hasn’t done enough or hasn’t exhausted every possible thing we could within our means. We have, and it’s time to refactor and add appropriate value to what we are doing.

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True.

But we haven't tried locking FPA to under pop side?

And we haven't tried side balancing locks?
 

Just an option.

 

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38 minutes ago, delems said:

True.

But we haven't tried locking FPA to under pop side?

And we haven't tried side balancing locks?

Just an option.

The time it would take to implement that outweighs the advantage for them. This is the point I keep coming at in my thinking, free players are not experiencing a very "great" WWIIOL experience because we've had to retain the value in our subscriptions, and therefore we have to find ways to limit their experience. This is counter productive and not very helpful. It also makes managing their expectations, when everyone else is pulling their weight and paying subscriptions, borderline impossible, as we have found over all of these efforts and attempts.

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2 hours ago, XOOM said:

The time it would take to implement that outweighs the advantage for them. This is the point I keep coming at in my thinking, free players are not experiencing a very "great" WWIIOL experience because we've had to retain the value in our subscriptions, and therefore we have to find ways to limit their experience. This is counter productive and not very helpful. It also makes managing their expectations, when everyone else is pulling their weight and paying subscriptions, borderline impossible, as we have found over all of these efforts and attempts.

If you shut down FTP (besides the trial period), and it sounds like the team has made up its mind on this point, then I strongly advise you to do a couple of things:

1) Make sure that the "starter" subscription is available to us at any point. When I went premium, my question was whether I could roll back to starter if I decided to - and I was told I could not, that once you move up, you can't move back down to starter. This might have been changed, but if it hasn't, it should. That way if someone does decide they need to save a little $ for a few months for whatever reason, they will be able to move down to $4.99, rather than being locked out of the game completely. (Another whole topic might be whether it should be called "basic" instead of "starter." I'll let the marketing folks handle that one).

2) Evaluate how this change is affecting the game - ESPECIALLY population wise - every 3 months or 6 months - don't wait 12 months, as was suggested earlier in this thread. As others have pointed out, the game experience is directly affected by having enough other players online to make this a fun, dynamic game. At certain periods/timezones or whatever, I feel WW2OL is already pushing the lower limits of this experience. 

This isn't a fantasy game with AI monsters and creatures to fight, or quests to undertake. When there aren't other human players to play with, there's simply nothing to do.

I'm concerned with some edginess I'm perceiving in certain posts lately. A question about when something might be delivered (that was asked politely) answered with "when it's ready." And the concept of people needing to "pull their weight," monetarily speaking. I get it, and you guys take a lot of grief on these forums and I sympathize. But at the end of the day, especially if FTP goes away, then those us us who are still playing it are - by definition - customers of this game. We are a community, but we don't have a lot of direct input into development or upper-level decisions being made.

The cost for a premium subscription to this game isn't trivial (it's more than Netflix, for example). For many of us, it's worth it - but I point that out to remind that we're still essentially just consumers. We don't always need or deserve to get what we want (because everyone wants something different) -- but should be treated with respect, at least when acting in good faith. And I understand that respect needs to go both ways. 

 

Edited by hillstorm
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17 minutes ago, hillstorm said:

If you shut down FTP (besides the trial period), and it sounds like the team has made up its mind on this point, then I strongly advise you to do a couple of things:

1) Make sure that the "starter" subscription is available to us at any point. When I went premium, my question was whether I could roll back to starter if I decided to - and I was told I could not, that once you move up, you can't move back down to starter. This might have been changed, but if it hasn't, it should. That way if someone does decide they need to save a little $ for a few months for whatever reason, they will be able to move down to $4.99, rather than being locked out of the game completely. (Another whole topic might be whether it should be called "basic" instead of "starter." I'll let the marketing folks handle that one).

Our decision to remove free play as a new option is not a catalyst to change what has been. We originally called it the basic account, then modified it to a starter later on after trying some different things.

17 minutes ago, hillstorm said:

2) Evaluate how this change is affecting the game - ESPECIALLY population wise - every 3 months or 6 months - don't wait 12 months, as was suggested earlier in this thread. As others have pointed out, the game experience is directly affected by having enough other players online to make this a fun, dynamic game. At certain periods/timezones or whatever, I feel WW2OL is already pushing the lower limits of this experience. 

This isn't a fantasy game with AI monsters and creatures to fight, or quests to undertake. When there aren't other human players to play with, there's simply nothing to do.

I am not as concerned because we are not removing a free option entirely. The new flow of incoming customers shouldn't be impacted by this, because their timeline will go from 2 weeks to 4 weeks. Perpetuity is indeed a valid position to be concerned about, but that's a decision non-paying customers need to make. We do not have an appropriate way to monetize free players (like serving advertisements), so we have to get back to reality with what we can and should be doing.

17 minutes ago, hillstorm said:

I'm concerned with some edginess I'm perceiving in certain posts lately. A question about when something might be delivered (that was asked politely) answered with "when it's ready." And the concept of people needing to "pull their weight," monetarily speaking. I get it, and you guys take a lot of grief on these forums and I sympathize. But at the end of the day, especially if FTP goes away, then those us us who are still playing it are - by definition - customers of this game. We are a community, but we don't have a lot of direct input into development or upper-level decisions being made.

Not everyone of our staff members are experts at providing commentary. Some just answer in their spare time when they can, and in some cases, should probably provide some more meaningful feedback when they have the appropriate time to answer a genuine question. I can understand how that may come off wrong and it's important to remember, not everyone is a customer service specialist. What is uniquely important is that the people who are responsible for doing the development of the game are actually here integrated as part of the communication platform and sharing feedback with you / answering your questions. That remains a very rare find in any online industry, particularly gaming / software services.

17 minutes ago, hillstorm said:

The cost for a premium subscription to this game isn't trivial (it's more than Netflix, for example). For many of us, it's worth it - but I point that out to remind that we're still essentially just consumers. Consumers who, individually, don't always need or deserve to get what we want (because everyone wants something different) -- but everyone should be treated with respect, at least when acting in good faith. And I understand that respect needs to go both ways. 

You are right, WWII Online's plans are more than Netflix's $7.99/mo. That is how Netflix has valued its company and it has enough volume to allow for that. Netflix has also gone all-in on the subscription model, as has other companies, for example:

  1. Netflix
    1. 30 day free trial (card required)
    2. $7.99/mo for service
    3. No perpetual free services
  2. HBO Now
    1. 7 day free trial (card required)
    2. $14.99/mo for service
    3. No perpetual free services
  3. Apple Music
    1. 90 day free trial (card required)
    2. $9.99/mo for service
    3. No perpetual free services
  4. YouTube Red
    1. 30 day free trial
    2. $11.99/mo for service
    3. Monetization by ad bombardment

So the sooner we realize what we are and stick true to that, the better we are going to be for managing everyone's expectations and get rid of confusing, hard to manage plans. 

Our experiment failed, that's the bottom line, and there's no easy way to sugar coat that or discuss it in a sensitive manner. Corrective action is necessary and that is the position CRS is taking after careful consideration and 7 years of doing the very best we could with what we had to work with.

I am spending some extra time here to explain because I believe it's important for you to know the lead up and the effort.

I agree by the way that respect goes both way, we need to hone in on that and contribute to respecting each other and cultivating the very best community we can. Coming together under the banner and cause of WWII Online's success and passionate belief in its potential should be a dominating force, not the loud anti-everything voices. That's a responsibility the community should take a bit more of to protect the core of our community as CRS can only do so much without being called out as too heavy handed btw.

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I do agree ... pay to play is the way to go. The cost is very manageable for all budgets. As stated though, you should allow those who need to save a few bucks, the opportunity to downgrade to a lower paying sub.

I do also think delems idea has merrit and would help combat one of the larger problems with the game (side balance). I have tracked balance for a number of campaigns now and it is pretty amazing how lop-sided it has become looking at the campaign as a whole.

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Thanks for your responses. I will agree that having you and the developers here to engage and answer questions is a big plus. 

If I was accurate about my first point (that there is no return to starter from premium), I would just ask again that you reconsider that when FTP goes away. Make any paid subscription option available at any time. The power of choice. That's all, for now ;) 

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*** Our decision to remove free play as a new option

Well, answer one question if you will.

I haven't seen 3 AOs in years.

Yet, both Sunday and Monday we had 3 AOs in game.

This tells me finally our pop is growing??  If so, isn't this the worst time to remove FPA?

 

Edited by delems

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I agree that a player should be able to choose a lower tier subscription after they have a higher tier one.  As long as they pay, they can play!

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1 hour ago, delems said:

*** Our decision to remove free play as a new option

Well, answer one question if you will.

I haven't seen 3 AOs in years.

Yet, both Sunday and Monday we had 3 AOs in game.

This tells me finally our pop is growing??  If so, isn't this the worst time to remove FPA?

"Years" ago the settings for what 3 AO's were different. We made 3 AO's more easily achieved if the underpopulated side had enough personnel online. We right dab in the middle of our slow season and will be coming out of it shortly (September-October'ish).

Removing FPA now is all about setting up the better season for success.

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30 minutes ago, GrAnit said:

I agree that a player should be able to choose a lower tier subscription after they have a higher tier one.  As long as they pay, they can play!

Premium guys stay premium because we need to build our subscriber base (foundation) before we can risk losing premium guys. That is the business decision as to why we don't allow downgrading.

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I'm a new player, just started in #165. Just thought I'd throw in my 2 cents, FWIW. I've mostly enjoyed the game so far and was strongly considering purchasing a sub. I didn't feel it was necessary as I only intended to play as a rifleman either way, but figured it was the right thing to do to support the game. In the short time I've played here I've come to meet some great people and really enjoy the teamwork aspect of the game. I'm a long time CoD player and was looking for a break from the toxicity and mindless arcade action.

With that being said, I was surprised to login today and find out I was no longer able to cap CPs. As of this post I am the #1 capper so far in this campaign, so F2Players clearly provide value to the community. I certainly understand from a business perspective the reasoning for limiting/removing F2P, but it's unfortunate. I've played at various times of the day, peak and dead time, and even during the peak hours the game didn't feel like a grand-scale war to me. In the dead times I've seen towns taken with only 1 or 2 EI trying to defend. I can count on 2 hands the number of Axis players I've consistently encountered during this campaign. I feel that this game has such immense potential, but hasn't reached the size of community necessary to achieve it. Removing F2P will obviously increase cashflow, but it will undoubtedly shrink the community further.

The appeal of this game is the realism factor for me. WWIIO has no true competitors that I can see, and while it is a bit of a niche market..it should dominate it. While some aspects seem absurdly unrealistic and out-of-character for the game (roof jumping, wall clipping, only registering 'hit' to the chest/stomach from 10m with a rifle, the horrendous lag that causes you to die before the enemy shows/no gunshot audio, the entire team using autos when historically riflemen dominated the numbers) I understand on a basic level the technical difficulties behind fixing some of these things, and how some are simply consequences of design (looking at you, grey murder box depots). I also understand that resources are needed to improve, and while I haven't been here long it seems that CRS is dedicated to progress and continuing to provide a great experience for the community. It's very commendable that they listen to the community and not just pump out content blindly for financial gain (90% of AAA studios).

With all things considered, I will stop playing for now. I know the value of the subs to the continued development of the game and community, however I would like to see the consistent in-game numbers increase before I see the value of a sub as a consumer. As @XOOM mentioned the slow season should be ending relatively soon so I'll check back in later and hopefully there is a more robust community to play with then. Good luck everyone and thanks for the fun experience!

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28 minutes ago, ojsimpson said:

I'm a new player, just started in #165. Just thought I'd throw in my 2 cents, FWIW. I've mostly enjoyed the game so far and was strongly considering purchasing a sub. I didn't feel it was necessary as I only intended to play as a rifleman either way, but figured it was the right thing to do to support the game. In the short time I've played here I've come to meet some great people and really enjoy the teamwork aspect of the game. I'm a long time CoD player and was looking for a break from the toxicity and mindless arcade action.

With that being said, I was surprised to login today and find out I was no longer able to cap CPs. As of this post I am the #1 capper so far in this campaign, so F2Players clearly provide value to the community. I certainly understand from a business perspective the reasoning for limiting/removing F2P, but it's unfortunate. I've played at various times of the day, peak and dead time, and even during the peak hours the game didn't feel like a grand-scale war to me. In the dead times I've seen towns taken with only 1 or 2 EI trying to defend. I can count on 2 hands the number of Axis players I've consistently encountered during this campaign. I feel that this game has such immense potential, but hasn't reached the size of community necessary to achieve it. Removing F2P will obviously increase cashflow, but it will undoubtedly shrink the community further.

The appeal of this game is the realism factor for me. WWIIO has no true competitors that I can see, and while it is a bit of a niche market..it should dominate it. While some aspects seem absurdly unrealistic and out-of-character for the game (roof jumping, wall clipping, only registering 'hit' to the chest/stomach from 10m with a rifle, the horrendous lag that causes you to die before the enemy shows/no gunshot audio, the entire team using autos when historically riflemen dominated the numbers) I understand on a basic level the technical difficulties behind fixing some of these things, and how some are simply consequences of design (looking at you, grey murder box depots). I also understand that resources are needed to improve, and while I haven't been here long it seems that CRS is dedicated to progress and continuing to provide a great experience for the community. It's very commendable that they listen to the community and not just pump out content blindly for financial gain (90% of AAA studios).

With all things considered, I will stop playing for now. I know the value of the subs to the continued development of the game and community, however I would like to see the consistent in-game numbers increase before I see the value of a sub as a consumer. As @XOOM mentioned the slow season should be ending relatively soon so I'll check back in later and hopefully there is a more robust community to play with then. Good luck everyone and thanks for the fun experience!

Thank you for writing this all out. I think it's a pretty balanced and fair position to take. I don't think closing the door and walking away is going to solve the concurrent player numbers. You are well within reason to do as you decide, my job is to keep the game running so that when you are ready to come back it'll be here for you to play again. 

All of the experiences that you have had has been made possible due to subscribers shouldering the financial burden to keep WWII Online and CRS operational. It will continue to be made possible by those guys who are currently subscribers, and those who are realizing that subscribing for $4.99/mo is going to give them a lot more content to play with and provide resources towards a cause that they believe in and find value in.

In case you did not know, WWII Online is 100% community funded. Without you, we are done. So instead of closing the door, consider that you can be part of the solution, and that each individual effort and decision you make has a greater or equal effect.

S! 

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44 minutes ago, XOOM said:

Thank you for writing this all out. I think it's a pretty balanced and fair position to take. I don't think closing the door and walking away is going to solve the concurrent player numbers. You are well within reason to do as you decide, my job is to keep the game running so that when you are ready to come back it'll be here for you to play again. 

All of the experiences that you have had has been made possible due to subscribers shouldering the financial burden to keep WWII Online and CRS operational. It will continue to be made possible by those guys who are currently subscribers, and those who are realizing that subscribing for $4.99/mo is going to give them a lot more content to play with and provide resources towards a cause that they believe in and find value in.

In case you did not know, WWII Online is 100% community funded. Without you, we are done. So instead of closing the door, consider that you can be part of the solution, and that each individual effort and decision you make has a greater or equal effect.

S! 

Long story short, if I read between the lines here, you need a better path to monetize the current model to keep the game up and running. F2P is not working. is this correct? 

With that in mind, there are other ways to increase the revenue stream without sacrificing numbers (which is key to game enjoyment I might add).

Just tossing a few ideas out there:

1) give discounts to accounts that achieve a certain number of logged hours, these players are your backbone.

2) sell daily subscriptions for a buck, weekly for $ 4.00 for access to all equipment

3) Set up in game competitions per campaign or week with prizes (plaques/medals/free month subscription/etc) Charge a small fee to enter

4) Many players have long since maxed out in rank, this needs to change, or at least come up with a way to achieve additional status. Maybe previous campaign recognition? 

I could go on and on, there are literally hundreds of way to increase the revenue stream, but right now your a little guilty to being fixated on F2P and not looking at the bigger picture. 

 

I do have on question I have not seen addressed, a concern of mine. If F2P players are not allowed to cap, are they still effecting the population balance equation that figures out duration of spawn timers and cap timers? You HAVE to take them out of that equation if your not allowing them to cap. 

 

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2 hours ago, GrAnit said:

I agree that a player should be able to choose a lower tier subscription after they have a higher tier one.  As long as they pay, they can play!

+1 

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1 hour ago, XOOM said:

Premium guys stay premium because we need to build our subscriber base (foundation) before we can risk losing premium guys. That is the business decision as to why we don't allow downgrading.

Does this downgrade statement apply only to the starter account?

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23 minutes ago, Randazzo said:

Does this downgrade statement apply only to the starter account?

If you go to premium, you stay premium. Been this way since we've added any new subscription type.

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2 hours ago, nc0gnet0 said:

I do have on question I have not seen addressed, a concern of mine. If F2P players are not allowed to cap, are they still effecting the population balance equation that figures out duration of spawn timers and cap timers? You HAVE to take them out of that equation if your not allowing them to cap. 

Excellent point.

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2 hours ago, XOOM said:

If you go to premium, you stay premium. Been this way since we've added any new subscription type.

That's effectively a commitment of full or zero if you taste of the premium equipment but once.  That seems counterproductive, $5 is better then $0, especially if F2P is off the menu.

 

4 hours ago, ojsimpson said:

I'm a new player, just started in #165. Just thought I'd throw in my 2 cents, FWIW. I've mostly enjoyed the game so far and was strongly considering purchasing a sub. I didn't feel it was necessary as I only intended to play as a rifleman either way, but figured it was the right thing to do to support the game. In the short time I've played here I've come to meet some great people and really enjoy the teamwork aspect of the game. I'm a long time CoD player and was looking for a break from the toxicity and mindless arcade action.

With that being said, I was surprised to login today and find out I was no longer able to cap CPs. As of this post I am the #1 capper so far in this campaign, so F2Players clearly provide value to the community. I certainly understand from a business perspective the reasoning for limiting/removing F2P, but it's unfortunate. I've played at various times of the day, peak and dead time, and even during the peak hours the game didn't feel like a grand-scale war to me. In the dead times I've seen towns taken with only 1 or 2 EI trying to defend. I can count on 2 hands the number of Axis players I've consistently encountered during this campaign. I feel that this game has such immense potential, but hasn't reached the size of community necessary to achieve it. Removing F2P will obviously increase cashflow, but it will undoubtedly shrink the community further.

The appeal of this game is the realism factor for me. WWIIO has no true competitors that I can see, and while it is a bit of a niche market..it should dominate it. While some aspects seem absurdly unrealistic and out-of-character for the game (roof jumping, wall clipping, only registering 'hit' to the chest/stomach from 10m with a rifle, the horrendous lag that causes you to die before the enemy shows/no gunshot audio, the entire team using autos when historically riflemen dominated the numbers) I understand on a basic level the technical difficulties behind fixing some of these things, and how some are simply consequences of design (looking at you, grey murder box depots). I also understand that resources are needed to improve, and while I haven't been here long it seems that CRS is dedicated to progress and continuing to provide a great experience for the community. It's very commendable that they listen to the community and not just pump out content blindly for financial gain (90% of AAA studios).

With all things considered, I will stop playing for now. I know the value of the subs to the continued development of the game and community, however I would like to see the consistent in-game numbers increase before I see the value of a sub as a consumer. As @XOOM mentioned the slow season should be ending relatively soon so I'll check back in later and hopefully there is a more robust community to play with then. Good luck everyone and thanks for the fun experience!

Heh, unbeknownst to you there was a player that was famous or infamous called OJ.  He just popped up a bit under his old squad's account SG1.

Be interesting to see which of you actually subs first.

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8 hours ago, XOOM said:

If you go to premium, you stay premium. Been this way since we've added any new subscription type.

2 things wrong with that:

- deters ppl from actually "upgrading"  to Premium because they may want to do so only for a short time, maybe summer / xmas vacation or whatever - because once they're done w/ whatever made them go Premium, they cant go back and are FORCED to make a new account....

- in conjunction w the above, forcing people to stay "Premium" just makes them go AWOL altogether if / when they feel the price of that Premium sub isn't managable / worth it / wasted due to time constraints w regards to actually playing et al. A downgrade to something like the Starter, if offered, may keep that sub active and thus paying. Oh, that option isnt available? FINE, no bling for you at all...

 

Toodeloo...

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9 hours ago, XOOM said:

If you go to premium, you stay premium. Been this way since we've added any new subscription type.

I came back for WBS, stayed a couple weeks at F2P, then I tried to sub at the min level, with an eye towards upping it to the all inf account when that was a thing. Wouldn't let me (now this makes sense ^^^^), and had to try via Support (seemed to work), but when it paid the next month, it charged me Premium (and I think I'm subbed as such). I let it slide, figuring I could always throttle it down if I get bored, and in the meantime I'd throw the support your way...

But not letting me tweak my account as I see fit is pretty annoying, frankly. So if I get to the point where I decide it's not worth Premium, I can't throttle it down for a while, and maybe come back, I have to simply decide I'm not playing enough to warrant the sub, and I'll disappear again.

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It is in the FAQ on the support page (https://www.wwiionline.com/support

"We do not allow existing Premium accounts to downgrade to a Starter or Free Play subscription. Starter and Free Play subscriptions are only available to new accounts.

Not only is it not technically possible, doing so you would lose all historical statistics and rank.

We recommend that you create a new free to play account if you'd like to be a f2p user."

 

Never noticed before, though when I (and probably the vast majority of us here) started there were no other sub options. I think the reaction to this is mostly surprise due in no small part to the more personal connection subscribers to this game have to CRS than is common with gaming companies. 

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On 7/19/2019 at 7:15 PM, csm308 said:

I also remember asking XOOM to look into increasing the number of SMG's for the Axis, now that the MG-34 had been, ahem, "fixed."  He said he would.  Apparently that meant reduce the number of SMGs in the Axis units.

VR

Now I read every response since this post , and not sure if Xoom answered it in private or not , but it sure wasn't addressed in the forum now. Which if it wasn't answered in private might have left a bad taste in csm308 mouth.

Now to the subscription part and F2P part.

I do also think that it is a mistake that one can't downgrade ones sub. Things come up and instead of just throttle down the sub till one can afford a bit more ,the player is forced to go F2P ( which will go away) or completely unsub till money comes in and he can afford his sub again.

What was never tried was tying the F2P to the underpop side and it should he explored. Now we have players that let their subs laps for one reason or another be it tight budget or discruntled about something in game or what CRS did. 

Hey if you want to play free fine but here are the terms , you will spawn in underpop and Rifle only ( maybe give them cap capabilities to 50% of a CP and or AB ) 

It just gets me that the F2P ( most vets ) come in here then and complain. 

My biggest pet peeve is no dmg model on ATG and AAA , but I still am subbed and pay 17.99 , even when I fell on a bit rougher times I still kept the sub up and cut short on something else . It's small decisions we make.

CRS can't change a thing without revenue and all your complaining as a F2P ain't getting us nor your concerns fixed any faster . 

These are just my thought on the matter. Be it popular or not , I don't care at least I'm still supporting the game via my monthly sub.

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