Author Topic: Would You Pay to Play?  (Read 16363 times)

J-Duds

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2013, 10:11:08 PM »
I think that (I know, its early and alpha) M&F is currently on track to be a niche game.  [...]  Who will a game like M&F appeal to, and even more importantly, how many of those people will be willing to pay for it?

I'm also concerned about that, but for once in my life I feel like I may be underestimating things.  People are comparing M&F to WoW and Farmville, but I see it as being much closer to Eve Online or Haven & Hearth.  Even some minecraft servers (which can be played in a web browser) are based around forming nations, setting up towns, and fighting other players instead of your typical freeform building.  This "sandbox nation-builder" genre is not the most common but I wouldn't call it unpopular. 

I suppose the big issue I see is that the appeal of the genre depends on how much effort players are willing to invest in the game and how long their attention is held.  A large part of the game is player-player interaction, which requires some individual initiative to experience and possibly days waiting for a reaction.  Leveling a character up to 20 or 60 or 1,000,000 in WoW doesn't draw people in like a $50k heist in Eve that makes it into real news articles, but the first can be done alone in an afternoon while the second takes years of coordination between many people to reach "interesting" levels.  As long as initial exposure and adoption is respectable things should be able to snowball on their own regardless of the monetization plan. 

feyeleanor

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2013, 12:39:39 AM »
This is something I agree with quite strongly. Although you can assign soldiers to knights, I do think the gameplay at that level needs to be expanded. Some type of adventuring or questing would be a good way to do it, but I don't know if that matches the core concepts of the game.

The gameplay for landless knights will largely be the clickfest that people know from other browsergames. If the lords and rulers play their cards well, the knights have specific goals to clear with specific resources. Gameplay will be interesting, but not excessively deep.

And yes, I know it needs to be expanded more. I will be added more control to settlements so you can allow people from your realm, your ultimate or just your vassals to use the local economy, to recruit or refit, etc. - to a limited degree. But all that is not trivial to code.


One possibility would be devolving control of an existing feature in a region to a knight, so a border post might become a garrison or a signpost could be a hamlet with farmers and so forth. There's also the option of allowing knights to control existing buildings, issuing the right to establish a building or some kind of trade monopoly within a settlement.


Another line of gameplay could revolve around knights errant performing quests (but hopefully without the grind that makes the BM adventurer game so dull), mercenaries skilled in training certain types of troops and so forth. This would require a money system of some kind.

xjermx

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2013, 04:10:07 AM »
Everyone does want to be an individual.  As much as we are all just a cog in a giant clock in our real lives, and we can be in our pretend lives as well, our pretend lives need to have *something*.  Something that they are good at, that perhaps some other people are good at too, but not everybody.  I hate to use D&D as an example, but take your average adventuring party.  You've got someone who's good at killing orcs with a sword, someone who's good at picking locks, and someone who's good at casting spells.  They're not the only ones who can do that, but they're not the same cookie cutter as everyone else around them.


Knights IRL were good at different things.  Some were skilled swordsmen, others great lancers, some good with organization and administration.   What if we let people pick some sort of specialty that might give some kind of in game (small) benefit?


This thread is right, being a lordly lord of something is rather fun in and of itself.  But being just a knight in someone's service?  Just all by itself, it doesn't sound particularly excited, except to the nerdiest history nerds of us.

Tom

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #18 on: April 11, 2013, 09:48:37 AM »
This thread is right, being a lordly lord of something is rather fun in and of itself.  But being just a knight in someone's service?  Just all by itself, it doesn't sound particularly excited, except to the nerdiest history nerds of us.

It is not meant to be the whole game experience. Starting as a knight is exactly that: Starting the game in a gentle way that gives you some action right away, some guidance right away (because your lord will hopefully tell you what to do) and some stuff (soldiers) right away. But it is fully intended that over time you will want your own estate.

You worry too much about estates running out. I don't. First I can make the game world larger at any time. Second, there will always be estates for the taking - you just have to take them from somebody. People might spend a time after a crushing defeat in war as knights again, having lost their land, and then they will conquer new land. It is not a smooth upwards progression as in most MMOs these days where you simply can't lose anything, but more of a cycle, as in EVE Online, or Mortal Online, or Ultima Online - games where loss and defeat is very much a part of the game.

Valast

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #19 on: April 11, 2013, 05:45:59 PM »
I have seen people pay to play some very terrible games... Most were free with the added bit of paying for some additional services.  Tribalwars, Gangsterhood, Sorren... Each of those games however involved the worst of player environments.

 M&F has the backbone of Battlemaster in its character driven base of play.  I would certainly pay a $1 a week up to perhaps $10 a month.  I of course am rather cheap having grown up on the poor side.  Putting those numbers in perspective... to play World of Warcraft is $15 a month plus the initial cost of the game and any new content.  The older versions of course are cheap now but each new addition is about $60 bucks once ever other year.  So a two year WOW account is about $400ish not counting some things (dont math me to death here just est)...  $200 bucks a year for M&F?  Eh no not with the current depth of understanding I have.  $60-$80 spread out monthly...you bet.

 This is if many of the things already mentioned were to come about.  Start up troops for a new noble, a bit more city interaction between nobles (perhaps ability to assign message groups, assign tasks to nobles who do not yet have estates)... Every noble does not need an estate if the liege has the ability to supply them with troops for battle or defense.  In fact I would say that the young nobles are the backbone of it all.

 I mention the following for demographics only:

 Married father of 3...
 income of between $35-$50k usd/yr
 Home owner

 This means I am stable and working however have time and financial limits and responsibilities.  I stopped playing WOW because I could not dedicate 2 or 3 hours (ok 5-8 hours) a day to play the game.  So M&F and Battlemaster are right in line with my time frame...

 Hope some or any of this helps.

Valast

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #20 on: April 11, 2013, 05:49:52 PM »
One more tidbit... a long free intro into the game would be good to think about.  If people are able to play and get into it for free then they will be more invested and have given it a chance to see if they like it.  Of course we will always have those who create new accounts and try to game the system to take over from themselves...

Bronnen

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #21 on: April 11, 2013, 05:56:26 PM »
Pay to play normally allows people a bonus that they would otherwise not get in the game, and I doubt anyone would pay if they would not get a bonus that gave them an advantage over non-paying people.


Custom towns, the ability to plan them out and organize, creating your own heraldry, creating your own unique building, things like that would be an incentive to pay to play.

miriamics

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #22 on: April 11, 2013, 05:58:34 PM »
People will pay for a lot of stuffs like for example:


- Be able to finish things faster (this is what makes people spend more money)
- Finish quests (second thing people use to spend money on)


I believe none of those will be a option at M&F but maybe, something like this could be implemented.
I don't see any problem in paying and being able to buy food so you can assign more people to finish things faster.



- Have a banner showing with your name
- Have a avatar
- Have a Armour


If you ever played a facebook game with other people, you would know how people spend a lot of money to buy nothing.
Its just the case of finding out witch "nothing" would be more attractive.


We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw

Mookzen

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #23 on: April 11, 2013, 06:13:00 PM »
The worst thing that can possibly happen to this game is a pay-to-win approach.

miriamics

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #24 on: April 11, 2013, 06:42:37 PM »
I did not say anything about pay to win. If you understand this, I apologize for not making a good point
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw

Brotato

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #25 on: April 11, 2013, 07:51:32 PM »
Being able to finish buildings faster or buy food would definitely be pay to win.  That would be a massive in-game advantage.  Honestly, I hate monthly fees.  I can do a one time buy thing but I wouldn't pay monthly.

Zangi

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #26 on: April 11, 2013, 08:42:31 PM »
Personally, I really rather not pay and I don't see myself sticking around long if everyone needs a subscription. Maybe once in a blue moon, but eh.  I am pretty cheap and tight on the wallet most of the time.


If I may suggest:
1. Only people that can create realms are Payers.  (Anyone, pay or free can subsequently rule the realm by succession or whatever.)
2. Only Payers get their entourage/soldiers back after inactivity.
3. Payers have the option of 'Non-Hero' mode.  They have higher chance of escaping from battle and not taking injuries/dying, since they never take part in the battle themselves.  (Lower leading battle bonus and no use for that X fighting skill... :P )
4. Pay to escape imprisonment, deus ex machina. (Per use, manually.)
5. Pay to avoid execution, ultra-deus ex machina.  (Per use, pre-payed.)
6. Moar peasants, recruit more peasants at a village, once. (Per use)
7. Peasant herder, peasants can't desert for in-game week. (per character)

pacres

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #27 on: April 11, 2013, 09:25:00 PM »
 I'm personally against pay to play, but if its developed enough with enough things figured out, I'd probably pay if it were cheap. As far as pay-to-win goes, it's the cancer of gaming today. Try the approach of some other games, have any paying features just give access to aesthetic changes. Such as: The ability to create your own banner emblem/colors (upon the okay of Tom to be sure it isn't racist, inappropriate), custom in-game avatar, a seal on all messages sent by that person (like an official seal of a lord stamped to close the scroll) and messages by them would have a scroll-like background with the seal somewhere on it. Things like that.

Mookzen

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #28 on: April 11, 2013, 09:28:50 PM »
[snip]
If I may suggest:
1. Only people that can create realms are Payers.  (Anyone, pay or free can subsequently rule the realm by succession or whatever.)
2. Only Payers get their entourage/soldiers back after inactivity.
3. Payers have the option of 'Non-Hero' mode.  They have higher chance of escaping from battle and not taking injuries/dying, since they never take part in the battle themselves.  (Lower leading battle bonus and no use for that X fighting skill... :P )
4. Pay to escape imprisonment, deus ex machina. (Per use, manually.)
5. Pay to avoid execution, ultra-deus ex machina.  (Per use, pre-payed.)
6. Moar peasants, recruit more peasants at a village, once. (Per use)
7. Peasant herder, peasants can't desert for in-game week. (per character)


Is this a joke ?

ndkid

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Re: Would You Pay to Play?
« Reply #29 on: April 11, 2013, 09:40:44 PM »
Most people know that M&F is a commercial project that will have some sort of fee paying aspect to playing it. So would you pay to play it? If not, and personal finances aren't the problem, is there something about the game that would put you off paying to play? Can you see any barriers within the gameplay that you think might discourage people from paying a fee to play (not just that they don't like it, but anything about the game that might make people think it's not worth the entry fee even if they do enjoy playing)?

Please note that Tom's already said it will not be pay-to-win, so let's steer clear of that one. Also keep in mind that the graphics and other aspects will improve if the crowdfunding is successful.
To respond to the OP: I do not see myself paying a subscription to play M&F. Personal finances aren't the problem. I've tried to get into P2P MMORPGs before, and I tire quickly, finding myself preferring to return to any of the games that I paid once for years before, rather than continue to pay a subscription cost. When I played Puzzle Pirates, I played the doubloon oceans, where I could use in-game currency to buy-up to certain gameplay features when I wanted them... I never had any interest in moving over to the subscription oceans.

As people have noted elsewhere, part of the problem is that if you are within a hierarchy and you want to step away, much of what defines your character disappears... to me, that leads to a very sink-or-swim result. I was highly active in BM for a couple of years, eventually ruling a realm... and the burn out finally became too much, and I stopped, and I have difficulty imagining returning now, even though it's a free game... the world has moved on without me, and trying to climb up through the relatively boring life of being a peon knight to a level in a realm where I feel like I am accomplishing anything is very akin in my head to the sort of grind one experiences in a MMO, just of a social variety.

I suspect there is some set of features that might turn me into the sort of person who'd be willing to pay to play M&F, but I hesitate to provide anything as certain as, "if you X, I will pay Y". I'd be far more accepting of ad-supported gameplay than P2P. I'd be highly suspicious of a scheme that had tiered gameplay where only real currency could unlock certain abilities/gameplay elements.

On the other hand, I'd be highly receptive to a large up-front cost for a lifetime subscription, whether as part of a KS campaign or something else.