Fee-to-Play aka Microtransactions

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Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

Jim Sterling adressed this pretty well. More and more games are going the Fee-to-play model. Requiring more money for things that unlock or require money for something that is already in the game is despicable. I am not personally against microtransactions for costumes or things that doesn't effect the outcome or the enjoyment of the game. But games like Ryse, Gran Turismo, Forza and other games have put a grind in the game AFTER you pay 60 bucks to play it. Making the game a grind to get the car you really want, but giving the option to buy it to give some players some sort of advantage by giving them credits with real money is stupid. It should not be that diffucult in the first place.

This kind of business practice has to die. The gaming industry can't move forward if they keep milking games even after you pay full price for it. I understand these business practices for actual Free-to-play games, because they are free and have to make a profit somehow, But with these big games that actually get full price when you buy them is a really bad idea and they will hear it. People should vote with their wallet by not buying these games and not buy into these microtransactions aswell.

This trend is not new, the last generation we had the on disc DLC and leaving in game content out of the actual game and selling the content as DLC is a business practice that happend last generation and it doesn't seem that the publishers want to stop this money milking from their loyal fanbase. Online passes, on disc DLC, DLC left out of games, the introduction of microtransactions, Exclusve content for preorderes, DRM games that launch and don't work, Season Passes, Day One DLC and overpriced DLC for games. This is something that will continue as long we allow these practices to happen by buying either the game or the additional content for those games. Because as long as we as gamers support these bad business practices this stuff will be there

#1 Posted by ReddestSkies (4087 posts) -

It's an entirely normal business practice. The fixed $60 price model is stupid and sub-optimal. What if you make a game and judge that it's worth $100? You find other ways to make the gamer pay more.

#2 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

It's an entirely normal business practice. The fixed $60 price model is stupid and sub-optimal. What if you make a game and judge that it's worth $100? You find other ways to make the gamer pay more.

Yeah, by making good content and a good game. Not by milking the consumer. Nintendo is the prime example. They release COMPLETE games and don't take DLC out of the game and make it as DLC

#3 Posted by ReddestSkies (4087 posts) -

@ReddestSkies said:

It's an entirely normal business practice. The fixed $60 price model is stupid and sub-optimal. What if you make a game and judge that it's worth $100? You find other ways to make the gamer pay more.

Yeah, by making good content and a good game. Not by milking the consumer. Nintendo is the prime example. They release COMPLETE games and don't take DLC out of the game and make it as DLC

But what if you think your game is worth $100, but you can only sell it $60 because Soviet Russia decided that it's what games sell for? Do you just give up and charge $60, or do you find a way to make up for the value gap?

#4 Posted by Archangel3371 (15361 posts) -

Well these are decisions that each individual will have to make. I don't dislike these things simply because they exist. For example I don't condemn on-disc dlc simply because it's on the disc already. I purchased Street Fighter X Tekken and was satisfied with it because it provided me with good entertainment value. I then purchased the dlc because again it provided me with good entertainment value. I was probably in the minority but that's ok and companies will ultimately do what's best for business anyway.

I particularily don't purchase microtransactions for things that I can get in-game because I'd rather just get them through normal gameplay instead. However if I play a game where feels like too much work to do this then I will simply not play the game or buy it in the first place. I'm playing Forza 5 right now and honestly I think it plays just fine. I do vote with my wallet just not in a way that some others may want. This is entertainment after all so what some may deem to be worth their time and money will be different then others. Mileage may vary and all that. Having someone else try to dictate what is good and what is bad never works.

#5 Edited by Ish_basic (3998 posts) -

Ryse doesn't belong in the discussion. Gear really doesn't matter to getting the most out of your multiplayer...it affects trivial things like how quickly you build up the crowd meter and player appearance. Also, even if you were to purchase gold, you still can't buy gear until you unlock the tier through leveling. It doesn't help you circumvent the grind, hence the grind can't be seen as encouraging players to buy gold. In fact, quite the opposite. The loot tiers become further and further spread out as you go, so by the time you can actually acquire gear packs you'll have farmed plenty of gold just from leveling, that you really don't need to buy any more.

In general, though, MT models just depend on how the dev uses them. To me, the best feature of the MT model is that it allows gamers to tell a publisher just how much their product is worth. Right now, on consoles we give a dev $60 for everything - even if we think it's too short or not deep enough or poorly written, etc. Buying a game at a discount price or used doesn't tell a publisher anything. MTs allow fans to have a larger voice and allow a smaller community to keep a franchise going, without that franchise feeling like it has to cater to mainstream interests to be viable. It's useful. Not every game is worth $60 and some are worth more.

#6 Posted by Nuck81 (5835 posts) -

I can't speak for Forza, but that's not how it works in GT6

#7 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

Ryse doesn't belong in the discussion. Gear really doesn't matter to getting the most out of your multiplayer...it affects trivial things like how quickly you build up the crowd meter and player appearance. Also, even if you were to purchase gold, you still can't buy gear until you unlock the tier through leveling. It doesn't help you circumvent the grind, hence the grind can't be seen as encouraging players to buy gold. In fact, quite the opposite. The loot tiers become further and further spread out as you go, so by the time you can actually acquire gear packs you'll have farmed plenty of gold just from leveling, that you really don't need to buy any more.

In general, though, MT models just depend on how the dev uses them. To me, the best feature of the MT model is that it allows gamers to tell a publisher just how much their product is worth. Right now, on consoles we give a dev $60 for everything - even if we think it's too short or not deep enough or poorly written, etc. Buying a game at a discount price or used doesn't tell a publisher anything. MTs allow fans to have a larger voice and allow a smaller community to keep a franchise going, without that franchise feeling like it has to cater to mainstream interests to be viable. It's useful. Not every game is worth $60 and some are worth more.

True Ryse might not be a perfect example, but it's still an exclusive game. Which means MS condones this kind of stuff. GT and Forza are also just recent examples, but these two games clearly show that they will not give up on these megatransactions as they should be called. If there is stuff like Dead Space 3, where there is only simple singleplayer stuff where it doesn't have any effect on the gameplay except for helping the player a tiny bit, then i think it's ok. But making someone pay for something that's already in the game and unlocking it by paying more than the game itself is flat out despicable.

#8 Posted by platinumking320 (666 posts) -

If feels like the big publishers this gen, hope to replace the personal video/computer game experience with a dollar munching, cent vacuuming re-up of the 'arcade' system to assure they're always getting the biggest ROI possible on all our....not even game-play, just our curiosity. Doesn't even matter how good you are if you got fat pockets. I

Just another example of modern exploitainment. Hmph.

#9 Posted by ReddestSkies (4087 posts) -

But making someone pay for something that's already in the game and unlocking it by paying more than the game itself is flat out despicable.

I must take a moment to laugh at your use of the word "despicable", and to remind you that nobody is forcing you to buy games with microtransactions.

#10 Posted by turtlethetaffer (16675 posts) -

I'd rather pay a flat price for a game and have it forever than pay all sorts of little things just to access various things.

#11 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

But making someone pay for something that's already in the game and unlocking it by paying more than the game itself is flat out despicable.

I must take a moment to laugh at your use of the word "despicable", and to remind you that nobody is forcing you to buy games with microtransactions.

So grinding for dusins/hundreds of hours is worth it instead of buying it for 5 bucks for example? Because that's what's happening now... They are making things a grind in games instead of regular enjoyment. You should struggle to earn something in a game, but if the reasoning behind it is making the game just a long grind on purpose. Well that's a different matter mate

#12 Edited by MirkoS77 (7166 posts) -

Don't have much thought on this subject, but that cat pic is fucking solid gold.

#13 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@MirkoS77 said:

Don't have much thought on this subject, but that cat pic is fucking solid gold.

thought it might be good to have some pictures to lighten the mood

#14 Edited by firefox59 (4361 posts) -

All of this goes to devs trying to make money lost from used games. They are making it take longer to unlock everything so that you hold onto the game instead of sell it back. The same can be said for most of the policies that were mentioned.

I've never seen the inception box gif. Greatness.

#15 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

All of this goes to devs trying to make money lost from used games. They are making it take longer to unlock everything so that you hold onto the game instead of sell it back. The same can be said for most of the policies that were mentioned.

I've never seen the inception box gif. Greatness.

the publishers don't lose that much money on used games. Also many buy new games by trading in their games. It's not a flawed system. They already get money with DLC and online passes

#16 Posted by ReddestSkies (4087 posts) -

@ReddestSkies said:

@The_Last_Ride said:

But making someone pay for something that's already in the game and unlocking it by paying more than the game itself is flat out despicable.

I must take a moment to laugh at your use of the word "despicable", and to remind you that nobody is forcing you to buy games with microtransactions.

So grinding for dusins/hundreds of hours is worth it instead of buying it for 5 bucks for example? Because that's what's happening now... They are making things a grind in games instead of regular enjoyment. You should struggle to earn something in a game, but if the reasoning behind it is making the game just a long grind on purpose. Well that's a different matter mate

Nobody's forcing you to play games that make you grind either. Stop giving money to publishers that have business practices you don't approve of, and maybe they'll stop using them.

#17 Edited by platinumking320 (666 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

@ReddestSkies said:

@The_Last_Ride said:

But making someone pay for something that's already in the game and unlocking it by paying more than the game itself is flat out despicable.

I must take a moment to laugh at your use of the word "despicable", and to remind you that nobody is forcing you to buy games with microtransactions.

So grinding for dusins/hundreds of hours is worth it instead of buying it for 5 bucks for example? Because that's what's happening now... They are making things a grind in games instead of regular enjoyment. You should struggle to earn something in a game, but if the reasoning behind it is making the game just a long grind on purpose. Well that's a different matter mate

Nobody's forcing you to play games that make you grind either. Stop giving money to publishers that have business practices you don't approve of, and maybe they'll stop using them.

Of course no one has to buy anything with business practices they don't like, but you can clearly see his discontent is coming from the idea that this'll end up being the new standard of any AAA high polygon, action adventure experience. Certainly with the way EA thinks.

It'll make experiences either limited to many or seriously expensive over time, and there could be far less of a meritocracy in competitive gaming. It could put paying over practicing and excelling. It could hurt the integrity of high ranks in competitive games in the future. People'll say 'oh he bought his way to the top' 'no skill whatsoever'.

Even if we are busy and don't have as much time to invest in games, there are ways to make upgrading through game play fairly reasonable to most people without being tedious.

#18 Posted by King9999 (11835 posts) -

Annoying first post aside, I think Path of Exile handles microtransactions perfectly. The only things you can purchase are cosmetic stuff and extra inventory space (you already get plenty of space to begin with). You can't purchase in-game currency or gear, nor can you pay to level up your character.

#19 Edited by Jacanuk (4222 posts) -

Nice blog

But even tho you are right that DLC and Microtransactions should be stopped it will never happen.

Microtransactions are big business and people , casual players who don't have 50-60+ hours to spend but just want to sit down in the weekend a few hours and play, will always pay.

#20 Posted by ReddestSkies (4087 posts) -

@ReddestSkies said:

Nobody's forcing you to play games that make you grind either. Stop giving money to publishers that have business practices you don't approve of, and maybe they'll stop using them.

Of course no one has to buy anything with business practices they don't like, but you can clearly see his discontent is coming from the idea that this'll end up being the new standard of any AAA high polygon, action adventure experience. Certainly with the way EA thinks.

It'll make experiences either limited to many or seriously expensive over time, and there could be far less of a meritocracy in competitive gaming. It could put paying over practicing and excelling. It could hurt the integrity of high ranks in competitive games in the future. People'll say 'oh he bought his way to the top' 'no skill whatsoever'.

Even if we are busy and don't have as much time to invest in games, there are ways to make upgrading through game play fairly reasonable to most people without being tedious.

The "integrity" of competitive AAA games stopped being relevant when pure deathmatch FPS stopped being popular. EA in particular has never made a relevant competitive game. If you want good competitive games, you're not going to get them from the AAA market. And just so we're clear, even COD1 wasn't playable from a competitive standpoint.

Also, if you don't like the direction that AAA games are taking in general, stop buying them. There's plently of choice elsewhere. This whole "outrage" thing is ridiculous and pointless. Getting "angry" because big publishers are discovering microtransactions is stupid. Play something else.

#21 Posted by ShepardCommandr (2417 posts) -

As long as the morons keep buying they'll keep selling them.

#22 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@King9999 said:

Annoying first post aside, I think Path of Exile handles microtransactions perfectly. The only things you can purchase are cosmetic stuff and extra inventory space (you already get plenty of space to begin with). You can't purchase in-game currency or gear, nor can you pay to level up your character.

and that's how it should be handled

#23 Edited by platinumking320 (666 posts) -

@ReddestSkies: For every company that'll only apply it cosmetically there are going to be a bunch of snakes. In our gimmick ridden climate it's not hard to imagine. and it's not anger its reasonable disillusionment. Imagine pay walls in an UT2004 style game.

#24 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@platinumking320 said:
@ReddestSkies said:

Nobody's forcing you to play games that make you grind either. Stop giving money to publishers that have business practices you don't approve of, and maybe they'll stop using them.

Of course no one has to buy anything with business practices they don't like, but you can clearly see his discontent is coming from the idea that this'll end up being the new standard of any AAA high polygon, action adventure experience. Certainly with the way EA thinks.

It'll make experiences either limited to many or seriously expensive over time, and there could be far less of a meritocracy in competitive gaming. It could put paying over practicing and excelling. It could hurt the integrity of high ranks in competitive games in the future. People'll say 'oh he bought his way to the top' 'no skill whatsoever'.

Even if we are busy and don't have as much time to invest in games, there are ways to make upgrading through game play fairly reasonable to most people without being tedious.

The "integrity" of competitive AAA games stopped being relevant when pure deathmatch FPS stopped being popular. EA in particular has never made a relevant competitive game. If you want good competitive games, you're not going to get them from the AAA market. And just so we're clear, even COD1 wasn't playable from a competitive standpoint.

Also, if you don't like the direction that AAA games are taking in general, stop buying them. There's plently of choice elsewhere. This whole "outrage" thing is ridiculous and pointless. Getting "angry" because big publishers are discovering microtransactions is stupid. Play something else.

i already said that you shouldn't support this sort of crap, but it doesn't seem to stop them from doing it

#25 Edited by Jaysonguy (37560 posts) -

@ReddestSkies said:

It's an entirely normal business practice. The fixed $60 price model is stupid and sub-optimal. What if you make a game and judge that it's worth $100? You find other ways to make the gamer pay more.

Yeah, by making good content and a good game. Not by milking the consumer. Nintendo is the prime example. They release COMPLETE games and don't take DLC out of the game and make it as DLC

Nintendo's had DLC for a while now, and it's incredibly overpriced compared to what's offered elsewhere.

#26 Edited by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

@ReddestSkies said:

It's an entirely normal business practice. The fixed $60 price model is stupid and sub-optimal. What if you make a game and judge that it's worth $100? You find other ways to make the gamer pay more.

Yeah, by making good content and a good game. Not by milking the consumer. Nintendo is the prime example. They release COMPLETE games and don't take DLC out of the game and make it as DLC

Nintendo's had DLC for a while now, and it's incredibly overpriced compared to what's offered elsewhere.

But it's not that often nor is it stuff left out of the game. Sure you can discuss the price, but they don't rip you off

#27 Posted by Ish_basic (3998 posts) -

@King9999 said:

Annoying first post aside, I think Path of Exile handles microtransactions perfectly. The only things you can purchase are cosmetic stuff and extra inventory space (you already get plenty of space to begin with). You can't purchase in-game currency or gear, nor can you pay to level up your character.

and that's how it should be handled

More and more companies are figuring out good MT models. What works for one game might not work for another, but players are pretty much letting companies know with their wallets what the best business practices are, which is what's great about MTs. You don't have that opportunity with your typical console game, to say, "hey, this shit ain't worth $60. Do better."

MT set-ups like in PoE are almost an honor system, where players really never need spend anything to get the full game experience, and a lot of the FtP games I've played these year follow this sort of model. The danger in that is freeloading gamers who will never spend a dime in the shop. If you like this sort of pay model (and more importantly, the game), you have to support it, otherwise all you will ever get is nickel and dimed, because ultimately publishers are just going to push for what's more viable. These sorts of pay models are a great way for smaller games to make an impact and offer a great opportunity to fans to keep around the franchises they want to see more of.

#28 Posted by platinumking320 (666 posts) -
#29 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

@King9999 said:

Annoying first post aside, I think Path of Exile handles microtransactions perfectly. The only things you can purchase are cosmetic stuff and extra inventory space (you already get plenty of space to begin with). You can't purchase in-game currency or gear, nor can you pay to level up your character.

and that's how it should be handled

More and more companies are figuring out good MT models. What works for one game might not work for another, but players are pretty much letting companies know with their wallets what the best business practices are, which is what's great about MTs. You don't have that opportunity with your typical console game, to say, "hey, this shit ain't worth $60. Do better."

MT set-ups like in PoE are almost an honor system, where players really never need spend anything to get the full game experience, and a lot of the FtP games I've played these year follow this sort of model. The danger in that is freeloading gamers who will never spend a dime in the shop. If you like this sort of pay model (and more importantly, the game), you have to support it, otherwise all you will ever get is nickel and dimed, because ultimately publishers are just going to push for what's more viable. These sorts of pay models are a great way for smaller games to make an impact and offer a great opportunity to fans to keep around the franchises they want to see more of.

True, but a lot of them still don't get it right either

#30 Edited by firefox59 (4361 posts) -

@firefox59 said:

All of this goes to devs trying to make money lost from used games. They are making it take longer to unlock everything so that you hold onto the game instead of sell it back. The same can be said for most of the policies that were mentioned.

I've never seen the inception box gif. Greatness.

the publishers don't lose that much money on used games. Also many buy new games by trading in their games. It's not a flawed system. They already get money with DLC and online passes

Online passes and certain types of DLC were created to counter used games. If everyone bought games new you wouldn't need online passes. Also, most people that I've seen sell games back, buy used, cause it is of course cheaper.

#31 Posted by The_Last_Ride (70678 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

@firefox59 said:

All of this goes to devs trying to make money lost from used games. They are making it take longer to unlock everything so that you hold onto the game instead of sell it back. The same can be said for most of the policies that were mentioned.

I've never seen the inception box gif. Greatness.

the publishers don't lose that much money on used games. Also many buy new games by trading in their games. It's not a flawed system. They already get money with DLC and online passes

Online passes and certain types of DLC were created to counter used games. If everyone bought games new you wouldn't need online passes. Also, most people that I've seen sell games back, buy used, cause it is of course cheaper.

But not everyone does that you know