Since everyone is so lovey-dovey over Turbine’s recent move to F2P, I’d like to take the time to link some reasons and views on why it isn’t good to promote it. First is Syncaine from Hardcore Casual writing about Atlantica Online here. He likes it but has this to say on the F2P side:
Finally, I just wanted to make a quick note about the RMT aspect of AO. Simply put, its garbage. Since you can basically buy XP and gold in the item shop, anyone with money to blow can quickly boost themselves to the upper levels of the game. Granted this causes you to miss most of the game, but when you involve PvP, it gets a bit silly. It appears however that the vast majority of the players don’t use the shop (or even know about it), and since the game is mostly about grind, I have a feeling skipping said grind would leave you with far less dollars and very little to actually do. It seems many players in AO are just there to fill time, and don’t find the game good enough to justify spending money. The fact that the item shop is far from cheap also contributes to this, as making purchases in AO quickly goes far above a monthly cost even for a small boost.
Next, Runes of Magic. A forum post by Lordemperor details the cost of gearing yourself up for endgame here.
I was interested in the expenses involved in making an end-game character. Considering my findings I have several recommendations for the developers
- Clean end-game gear costs $266.70US minimum
- Investment equals ~2 years playing a subscription-based game
- Farming enough daily tokens would take 165 days
- Some suggestions to lower cost without impacting Frogster’s bottom line too much.
He goes on to mention that this is only for one character, not account wide. Others in the thread seem to agree with him, pointing out the impossibility now that they changed diamond selling to farm them without turning to real money. Auryin in that same thread mentions this:
I pay a yearly subscription to play another MMO.. it costs me around ~95.00$. I can honestly yet shamefully say, that personally I’ve spent ~150$ in 5 1/2 months of playing Runes of Magic. I didn’t mind buying diamonds, as I bought them usually to gift others, and I’m not complaining about this, just stating that I honestly can’t think of any P2P that has cost for a yearly subscription, less than 70$.
Next to Perfect World, where an mmorpg.com poster named Popinjay breaks down levelling past 70 in it:
Ok, lets recap. You have to pay for pots. You have to pay for armor/weapons and repairs. You have to pay for teleports (or take a slow ass run or ride), You have to pay for quests. You have to pay for experience scrolls to make any decent rate. You have to pay for hieros, and if you dont have hieros, you will be kicked out of groups. You have to pay for spells (and once you get past 70+, youre spells gonna start costing millions a level.
So basically, this game.. You have to PAY for everything. Add in that after 70, its pure grind, no matter how many other “ways” to level their are, grind is the only real way to do something.
Grind, or turn to the item shop to skip or slow it.
Even lesser known P2P games like Requiem: Bloodymare aren’t immune. Here’s ranxeroxxx talking about the costs of endgame levelling in it here.
To grind at 100% efficiency in North Hammerine (or anywhere) for 30 days.
$14.99 Premium Sub
$22.00 30% xp bonus (4×7 day + 2×1 day)
$ 8.00 50% lant drop bonus 30 day
$ 2.00 Item reduction tool 30 day
$ 3.75 5x Rare Self AED (assuming 5x deaths per day avg.)
Why is it so much? Because you are looking at tens of millions of exp for those levels.
My own experience in Mabinogi is that it was even easier to spend. the “sub” fee of fifteen bucks for Nao’s support is all that makes the game playable: otherwise you are unable to self-rez and eat a huge exp penalty, have to grind for potions to prevent your items from falling off when you die or degrade faster, have decent bank and bag space, and others. However there was even more: $10 a month for an extra rebirth, which resets you to level one stats and lets you level up again for more AP. You can get it for free once every 3 weeks, but you will easily hit the cap where you can reach the amount of AP from straight leveling before it. The best players rebirthed and leveled to 50 every single week, and they did damage which decimated you.
This isn’t counting pet purchases. A mount costs an additional 10-15, and people often used multiple pets both for storage and for combat/crafting. I’m not going into gachapon, or random item capsules. $10 for ten tries at a specific set of items in the hope for rares.
Everyone is focusing on how F2P is good for bringing people in, but no one is really thinking about what happens when you are “in” for the duration. F2P games charge tremendous amounts to be competitive at the higher levels. I refused to include Allods Online in this because it would have made it too easy, but the next time you champion a game going F2P, just remember the costs of many of them.