Game consultancy business founder says ZeniMax will launch new MMORPG with paid subscription, but will drop fee in time.
ZeniMax will launch The Elder Scrolls Online with a monthly paid subscription model but will in time transition the title to free-to-play, according to Nicholas Lovell, founder of game consultancy firm Gamesbrief.
"I still believe that subscription games are on the way out," Lovell told Edge. "It is conceivable that Bethesda will launch with a subscription service to attract the early adopters, because that is the model they understand."
He added, "They will switch to free-to-play later, in the same way that many iOS games go from paid to freemium over their lifetime. EA is struggling with The Old Republic, [but] almost everyone else is transitioning to free-to-play."
Two marquee subscription-based massively multiplayer online games on the market today are Blizzard's World of Warcraft and BioWare's Star Wars: The Old Republic. Both titles have suffered subscription dips recently, with 2 million bidding adieu to Azeroth since 2010, and 400,000 saying good-bye to Star Wars in the span of just three months.
The Elder Scrolls Online was announced last week and is headed to the PC and Mac in 2013. The game has been in development since 2007 and will cover the entire continent of Tamriel, including the lands featured in previous Elder Scrolls games like Cyrodiil, Skyrim, and Morrowind. Additionally, the title will be set 1,000 years before the events of last year's hit Skyrim and will put players into the world on the brink of demonic assimilation at the hands of the daedric prince Molag Bal.
Hmm...Free to play...I kind of like the sound of that, now I also see people saying "Ugh, this should be Buy to play..." And I have to disagree a bit there.
Think about it: You have a game that is free to play, people are bound to look at it and decide to give it a try, if they like it, they will most likely put some money in to it to support the company, if they don't, then they will probably not play and not pay, The only thing you lose is a few players and like...What? A few dollars or so? Also I will say that Buy to play is a bit of a horrible marketing route, because if someone buys a game, doesn't like it, then the person won't be all that happy since he most likely got burned (Take a look at Defiance's first few days/weeks) or feels like he got burned, and no don't tell me "GUILD WARS 2!" Because I think that game is....Really dull, I mean if it was more interactive than WoW, then why must I spam buttons to attack? Why can't I press my mouse button to attack and not have to go with pressing 1 all the time
So I do hope this does go down the Free to play route and not the Buy to play route, because let's be honest: We don't know how it will be, and I don't think people are looking to buying a game that isn't gonna be so spectacular...And no I am not a person that follows the hype like a robot
Edit: For people who say "Oh I would rather pay a Sub", well you can pay as you go, that could be your subscription than having the game drain your credit card every month
Yeah...Pay as you go....Sounds a lot better than having a credit card being sucked up by a game
i would rather pay a sub as long as the price matches the quality i would still be playing wow if it were say 5-7 a month instead of 15
I hate being sold stuff in game for real money.
It bugs me. I quit GW2 cause it was so annoying
I prefer a monthly sub, and no ads to buy product. I get enough of that BS on TV
What payment model willThe Elder Scrolls Onlineuse?We have not yet announced the business model for The Elder Scrolls Online. When we do, we'll be sure to share the news on our website and official Facebook and Twitter, so stay tuned!
I would pay annually for a game that had actually innovative features such as player made kingdoms and factions, player-driven quests, player run market, player built towns, and open world PvP. Unfortunately the one game that has all this, EVE, is a nightmare to learn.
Been hearing this "paid subs are dying" tripe for a couple years now, and every time I hear it, I can't help but think, "Wow, this person has no god damned clue how consumerism works."
I will never buy a pay-to-play game (such as WoW), but I would gladly pay 100$ (plus 20$ for expansions) once for the ESO game that has no subscription fees and hidden money-grabbing hooks.
Free to play model with no payment at all , accumulating enormous profit is the most simple thing ever ! How ? Let me explain I saw it in Aion and it convinced me that the team at Gameforge that came up with that are geniuses . It is basic and simple - all characters are limited to not being able to trade with each other , use only basic chat , have a limit to the ingame money they can store in their inventory and bank , limited inventory space , bank space , not being able to use auction house and many many other limitations , BUT they make an item in the Cash store that is tradable between players - in Aion's case it was called a Gold Pack - it removes all limitations for 30 days and costs about 1.99 $ so people who have extra cash on their hands buy plenty of those say - 15 for 30 $ and sell them at 5-8 million in game to other players for ingame cash now believe it or not that alone excluding the ridiculous amount of other stuff you can buy to customize your character , mounts , enchantments and so on all of which is freely tradable between players makes it possible to have a perfect f2p model where only people who want to pay will pay the rest can play entirely free as long as they keep farming bosses / instances long enough to accumulate the ingame money required to get the cash shop items - and dont get me wrong you dont have to grind like a lunatic to afford the cash shop items - 8 million in Aion for a character 40-55 can be made in about 2 days playing 4-5h/day which leaves you 28 days of nice time to do whatever you want and experience a premium - type account . So I really don't see a reason why not make TES F2P i mean look at Neverwinter they announced it as F2P , because they know that F2P model doesn't mean low income if you are certain that the product's quality will get you a big enough player base . Point is if the game is good F2P is likely to get larger income than P2P because if you have 2 million players worldwide paying 15$ a month you get 30 mil $ / month , but if you got 20 million players worldwide each using a say Gold Pack in Aion's case you get 40 million $ / month regardless of how much an individual player pays for it and there is no place to compare F2P with P2P models when it comes to player base F2P can accumulate tons of players unlike P2P which relies on low player base with high income to support them and the result is SWTOR . So if Bethesda really want to make an income out of this they should focus on quality to attract players and F2P model to keep them hooked .
@vjj1991 The Lord of the Rings Online reported their annual income to DOUBLE within 3 months of switching from monthly to a free model.
PAYMENT MODEL: PAY ONCE FOR GAME ( example: 70$) and BUY expansion packs for 10$... but u dont need to pay monthly fee. IF ur going to do that many people will buy it.. BUT if ur going to do monthly fee forget about it... PAY ONCE or nothing!!!!
@klavec Or just go free to play, people will buy stuff anyway if they like it, at least then people will be either happy playing the game and pay for it and people will be disappointed but not angry because they wasted 50/60/70 dollars on a game they didn't like (Honestly, 70$? What the hell is wrong with you?)
I just don't get it.....TESO could easily be Skyrim: MMO, if they wanted too, but Zenimax is trying to play it safe and stick with the old and boring mmo formula. If TESO battle system is like as Skyrim, i believe the game will be a great success. WHO CARES if you can't see yourself getting flank??? You got friends, clan members IN AN MMO to guard your rear. (TEAMSPEAK IT UP) I believe not being able to see 36000000 degress view of your ass actually promote excitement and teamplay with other players in your same clan. Learning to time attacks, parry and blocking will make the game awesome in a real action mmo environment especially in PVP or GVG or CVC (clan vs clan)
I am also so sick of whatever party system or instance crap, just make it open and make the "quest" an overall clan quest. Such as go and f--king take over this castle from this clan. DONE. No more collecting sheep hair or tree leafs. These quest would be extremely challenging right from the start, if going alone like He-Man ain't your cookie, wait up in the clan meeting area and go in a zerg like in the LORD OF THE RINGS (movie not game)
End of the day, in our MMO (NEW MMO) we would want to see f--king arrows and spells flying around while you are surround with foes and allies alike in the battle field in your first person gameplay view......intense, bloody and so ELDER Scrolls.
I am assuming most of the commenters have no clue about MMO's and a Skyrim single player rpg fanboys.
1. Skyrim is an action rpg, I am sure this game will be more "role-Playing" than skyrim.
2. It is time for an elder scrolls MMO, I want to see the whole world and I want to experience the game with others, I want PvP. I want politics. I want epic large scale battles. These types of things you don't see in regular Elder Scrolls games. Don't get me wrong I absolutley adore Skyrim/Morrowind, but it does get seriously lonely there sometimes.
3. There is nothing wrong with subscription based games, take Rift for instance. They provide updates and new content contstantly. not just new zones/raids but new pvp game types, invasions, features like instant adventure, seasonal events, etc. Yes is you subscribe to WoW (Actiblizz) or SWTOR (EA, bleh) than you are going to get ripped off. they take your money and re-invest it into other products they offer, only to come out with an expansion that they also charge for.
One of the best MMOs i ever played was TF2 and that was slowly made into a f2p that created mass amounts of profit and was tilted toward not limiting f2p gamer experience
this is a list of why I think it was so good
1.It did not limit players on f2p by game engines. E.x. A player theoretically could play the entire game without paying
2.Instead of the of the "pay to win" it was a "pay to look cool" It was not worthwhile to buy actual weapons in TF2 but so many people got all the weapons and enjoyed the game doing it they were willing to buy vanity items such as hats and strange weapons. Once you introduce the pay to win you kill any hope of attracting new gamers through f2p and reputation of the game will decrease
3.If you played the game free it had 1 minor restriction of not being able to trade but could be easily removed by becoming premium for 5$ and that lasted PERMANTLY introducing pay per month also kills a game. You don't want a game to be pay to win but you also dont want it pay per month.
Overall even though it removes the first person combat system I doubt that will be a hugely negative impact. If they can execute the profit system well then it still has a chance as a totally new elder scrolls spin-off MMO and it will not necessary need elder scrolls reputation. I recommend they keep tending the first person games that you guys so enjoyed but could also do the mmo
@Lord_Regnier In part I think you are right, however, this game is done by a different company, and this move by ZeniMax will in no way impact Bethesda's ability to release other Elder Scroll titles. This isn't the continuation of the Elder Scrolls series, more like the start of a whole new one.
@strackeboy Yeah, that was a good move cos if Zenimx botch it up, then bethesda can wipe their hands clean of the game but if it is a hit they can claim all the credit
@LegendaryFightz True. However, I'm going to stay optimistic. I like the way it's going. Don't get me wrong, I'm in love with SKYRIM, but I think it's gonna be cool to experience the world, with my friends.
Just my opinion, thought I'd share it :P lol
ElderScrolls Online..... I like the Idea, But as the game analysts say I have a mixed feeling about this game. Whatever it may be, I like Elderscrolls and the way it is.
I really wanna play this with my friends, as i wanted to do this from a long time, Since the day i started to roam the worlds of Oblivion.
@Vraeth You mean the weather man? Weather forecasts are usualluy accurate, and have become more so with the past few years.
Hahaha. What a genius analysis. "MMO that's not WoW will suffer the fate of... an MMO that's not WoW.
I feel like skyrim is going the way of the WoW. I loved WC2&3 strategy games but once the online games came (which I did play and enjoy) the real-time strategy ones were left in the dust with more than likely no return in sight. It would be a shame if the Elder Scrolls just becomes a MMORPG & stops producing amazing single player experiences.
Consider this, in any given elder scrolls game you can go where you want, when you want. The game scales to your own personal ability. They won't be able to do that with an MMO. Also, you won't feel like the chosen one. With everyone else just as powerful as you, the game will feel very impersonal. So it is going to be another MMO with grind quests going from one forced town to the next. Every town will have a "Kill 50 of So-and-So" quest. It will get to the point where you will only want to raid. However, when you get there the F2P model will kick in, and you will need to pay great amount of money to get anywhere in the raiding world. It will become a pay to win environment with a horrible questing system, like every F2P MMO.
@MasterOfSprites I seriously think you read my mind with this post. While I hope and pray this isn't the case, you have hit the nail on the head with this. I doubt they can make an mmo easily that captures the spirit and feel of TES that we all love so much.
@MasterOfSprites Your argument makes absolutely no sense.
Is anyone else tired of the F2P model? I personally hate having part of the game locked out unless I pay. Some of these games charge you highway robbery just to unlock the full game, and it would have been cheaper just to pay the 15 bucks a month. Personally, an elder scrolls MMO sounds like a horrible idea. So not only should this game not be F2P, it shouldn't exist.
If it goes free to play, I will be over the moon. I loved Skyrim and if they keep to the same model... this will be amazing. I hope this will also show other mmo that free-to-play is the way to go. I find my self paying just as much on a good free-to-play as I do on any other. It nice to feel like you getting something for free.
I have high hope for this if they are spending the money that they say but I hope this game also has a single player mode because I don't really like the concept of an elder scroll online but who know maybe it will be good but It better be better than skyrim cause skyrim kinda suck so untill the elder scroll online I will play oblivion and this better not have like a membership you have to buy like each year or month cause they could do that. But i will be looking forward to the single player
@BuckeyeTiba Aion is now Free to play d not play to win in the least. Lineage 2 also when it went F2P did not go P2W. It has and can be don it just has to be done right...
Free to play.... lol Ok. Last time I checked 99.99% of FRP games are a total ripoff. As many have said before.. You never fail to amaze Bethesda
Wow imagine walking all around tamriel. Damn I get tired just exploring skyrim. Bethesda never disappoints
It takes about 6 months for a MMO to be fully matured and one of those is the subscription numbers. There are those who will play it for the first month and stop, others will pay for three and six month subs. The ones are still active are those who have six months to a year and you will see Old Republic numbers drop even more.
Well with the sub-par screens and generic look, I hope it goes Free-to-Play sooner than later. As much as I love the Elder Scrolls Series/Universe, this title so far looks like trash.
the golden rule of MMO's is "he who has the most time to play wins" if you got a job or kids and cant put in 14 hours a day like the rest of the server then you shouldnt be playing the genre period.. matter of fact you should be playing casual console games. This is an MMO no one wants to put in time when the next guy can buy his way to the top.
If it's worth paying for, people will pay a subscription Mr. Lovell. The problem is, theres to many MMO's that just aren't worth paying a monthly fee for and the others that are free are a stupid gimmick. It makes me mad to hear you say it will be free to play because subscription based MMO's are on the way out. Why don't you make an MMO worth playing and people will pay. I have the feeling already the developers think their own game just isn't good enough.
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