Might & Fealty Community

Questions, Conduct, & Feedback => Conduct & Design Discussion => Topic started by: Foxglove on April 09, 2013, 07:45:26 PM

Title: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Foxglove on April 09, 2013, 07:45:26 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: xjermx on April 09, 2013, 07:51:25 PM
Since Kickstarter got big, I've seen a number of independant game developers either using it, or going on their own to offer people early access to their game in exchange for payment.  Minecraft did it, a little game called Door Kickers did it.


I'm not sure what Tom's business model is here, whether a recurring subscription, or a one-time subscription.  This might be a way to get a start on bringing in come capital for its continued development.


Edit: Don't Starve is doing the same.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 09, 2013, 08:05:52 PM
Tom is doing a monthly subscription according to the last time he posted about.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on April 09, 2013, 09:35:37 PM
To be honest it depends on how far can Tom get the game away from the 'just a browser game' perceptions people -will- have.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: PracticalM on April 09, 2013, 11:01:01 PM
I think the steadily decreasing peasant population as listed in the blog notes shows that the game is tending towards low population even with the reduction of recruiting percentages. 


The inability to communicate with your neighbor (without spending a character going around and hunting them down) makes early cooperation difficult.  This will tend to reward single players playing large families. 


There's a lot of effort so far in the attack others part of the game but not as much in the work together with others part of the game.  I would be more interested in that approach.  I've never played BM before so maybe I should go look at that.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Foxglove on April 10, 2013, 12:16:29 AM
Something I've wondered during both Alphas is whether people will be willing to pay to play if they have to accept their characters taking a lesser role in the game. Will everyone want to have a citadel? Will they all want to be king or queen? My experience with games is that people will pay to play a main actor in the drama, but I don't know if they'll be as willing to pay if they're outside the main circles of power. In Battlemaster, the game mainly becomes interesting once you've got a region to run, or when you're in one of the message groups that deals with military or political actions. I wonder how being a simple knight or just controlling small settlements will work out in M&F, and whether it'll be enough to make people pay for that level of involvement.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 10, 2013, 12:31:26 AM
My take is that "main actor" in most games is a lie. You are the 7853th person to defeat the Lich King, congratulations! You are such a hero! Take a price from the lower shelf.

In M&F, as in BM, your role might not be the lead role, but it is honest, and it is unique. You are not one of 5000 kings/baron/knight of Sirion, you are the only one.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Foxglove on April 10, 2013, 12:58:47 AM
My take is that "main actor" in most games is a lie. You are the 7853th person to defeat the Lich King, congratulations! You are such a hero! Take a price from the lower shelf.

If it is a lie, it's a seductive one that people are happy to buy into again and again. To an extent, I agree with you. But, when playing, does a player really care that 1000 players before them have defeated the Lich King? In my experience, they buy into the personal achievement that they've defeated him and enjoy the new bit of equipment they've taken from him.

In M&F, as in BM, your role might not be the lead role, but it is honest, and it is unique. You are not one of 5000 kings/baron/knight of Sirion, you are the only one.

I honestly think that paying to play brings a whole different set of expectations about what you should be able to do in a game, and that people will want to be able to personally unlock or take part in the most advanced aspects of the gameplay. If they find they can't do that, I'm not convinced they'll continue to part with their money for a monthly subscription - if that's the payment model you go with. If I'm proved wrong, I'll be the first one to be happy about it.

That being said, I know other payment models have been discussed too (such as paying for cosmetic customizations), and I could see that being much more acceptable to people playing at the lower levels.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: PracticalM on April 10, 2013, 01:07:47 AM
My experience in Puzzle Pirates is that people usually don't care to be subservient.  Because of their guild structure (Crews and Flags) if you want to be a captain you have to start your own crew.  There are tons of one person crews because people want that title even if it's a clearly useless one.

In M&F
Right now, the game advantages for becoming a vassal of someone else is very intangible.  Sure there are good role play reasons and maybe some good political reasons but because cooperation cannot be enforced any group of players that come into the game aligned before play will always have an advantage over a similarly sized group of players who allied only after meeting.

And in any group of players there is very likely to be someone who feels they got the short end of the stick and will betray the group. 

The original reason to be a vassal to someone else was to band together against other bands but if players can be their own bands then either you need to limit 1 character to one account (fee for each account) or you come up with some reason why a player should trust a total stranger who just happened to land near me in the game.

Feudalism is built on reciprocal obligations to deal with a lack of centralized power, but the structure of the game requires a more centralized power (built up one or more cities) which completely destroys the need for a vassal arrangement.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 10, 2013, 01:29:19 AM
or you come up with some reason why a player should trust a total stranger who just happened to land near me in the game.

That's easy. You can't be awake 24/7, you can't do everything on your own. Maybe you can really play 30 characters every turn - but that kingdom over there has 30 players with 2-5 characters each. They will roflstomp you if you think you can take them on on your own.


and that people will want to be able to personally unlock or take part in the most advanced aspects of the gameplay.

I don't think that is quite true. There are many high-tier dungeons or raids in any MMO that I've ever played that I never came to see. But the rest of the game was enough for me.

People should not be left out of the core of the game. Leaving some high-end parts of it for the dedicated players is a part of most online games. What you need is the possibility. Everyone in M&F could become a king or an emperor. Most never will, but it is possible.

The other part is being honest. The game gives you a personal success story. Yours might include a barony and a nice town with trade deals you are proud of, while that of the other guy might include a crown and world diplomacy. Neither is inherently better than the other - they are different aspects of the same game.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: feyeleanor on April 10, 2013, 03:32:16 AM
M&F like BM reminds me of the better team-oriented postal games that were popular in the 80s and 90s. I was quite happy to pay 1 or 2 a turn in those games because of the sense of a real world evolving thanks to player involvement, and I think M&F has the potential to scratch a similar itch.


However, there are a limited number of settlements so gameplay for knights who don't hold land is going to have to be expanded. The players of those knights are going to want to raise troops, fight battles, adventure, trade and involve themselves in other ways as well.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Foxglove on April 10, 2013, 04:15:45 AM
However, there are a limited number of settlements so gameplay for knights who don't hold land is going to have to be expanded. The players of those knights are going to want to raise troops, fight battles, adventure, trade and involve themselves in other ways as well.

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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: xjermx on April 10, 2013, 04:30:17 AM
Simply being 'good', having lots of great features and gameplay, being well designed and well implemented does not inherently make a successful game (or a successful anything).    Granted, it is a great start though.


Plenty of good games and movies and books get overlooked by the media and large swathes of the consuming public.  Why?  Well, if its already good, what is it lacking?  Publicity.  If the best game in the world game out, and you never heard about it, you certainly can't be a consumer of it.


Just brainstorming.  I don't have a silver bullet.  Publicity is, I imagine, damned difficult for indie stuff.  Tom doesn't have Sony's marketing and advertisement budget (even with some crowdsourcing backers).  Still, social media is a good start.  Word of mouth is important too.  I'm inclined to suggest that Tom continue to increase the number of alpha testers.


But there's medium to look at too.  Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying that browser gaming is a dead end, but lets take a realistic look around.  Look at World of Warcraft, Everquest, Modern Warfare.  And for some comparison, look at MUDs.


I think that BM is a niche game.  I think that (I know, its early and alpha) M&F is currently on track to be a niche game.  There are some browser games that appeal to a wider audience, but those are all click-fest games.  Think Farmville, and Lord of Ultima and Travian or whatever it was called.  It goes also to what gamers are looking for.  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?
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 10, 2013, 10:58:05 AM
Plenty of good games and movies and books get overlooked by the media and large swathes of the consuming public.  Why?  Well, if its already good, what is it lacking?  Publicity.  If the best game in the world game out, and you never heard about it, you certainly can't be a consumer of it.

I know that - see here: http://forum.mightandfealty.com/index.php/topic,401.0.html
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 10, 2013, 11:01:02 AM
I think that BM is a niche game.  I think that (I know, its early and alpha) M&F is currently on track to be a niche game.  There are some browser games that appeal to a wider audience, but those are all click-fest games.  Think Farmville, and Lord of Ultima and Travian or whatever it was called.  It goes also to what gamers are looking for.  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?

Seperate answer to this and:

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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: J-Duds 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. 
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: feyeleanor 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: xjermx 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Valast 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Valast 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...
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Bronnen 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: miriamics 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.


Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on April 11, 2013, 06:13:00 PM
The worst thing that can possibly happen to this game is a pay-to-win approach.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: miriamics 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
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Brotato 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Zangi 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)
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: pacres 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen 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 ?
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: ndkid 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.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 11, 2013, 10:06:46 PM
To bring everyone up to speed, a few items that have already been decided and are no longer up for discussion:


Let me elaborate on the subscription model and the why:
I believe in fair and transparent relations, whether it is private or business. Most so-called free-to-play games are actually trying to scam you, and yes, I use that word intentionally. They present themselves as "free", but the reality is that the business model is so successful because the average player will spend more money on them then in a subscription or buy model. I will not be scamming my players.
The second reason is that a subscription model solves an incredible amount of problems, from multi-cheating in all variants to having to deal with 90% of new knights going inactive after a day all the time. It will be a better game experience for everyone.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 12, 2013, 12:43:02 AM
One suggestion I have is allowing the first month of M&F to be free. Its the "demo" of the game.

Hype rarely gets me to buy a game I have never played before nor its company. Hype gets me interested, but I usually don't end up buying a game by a company I have played any of its games before without playing either a demo or just playing on someone else's game first if its a console. CK2 for instance has had plenty of hype on BM forums and irc which got me interested, but I never planned on buying it until I played the demo.

Thus, I suggest giving some kind of demo for any game, in this case simply being able to play a character for a month for free.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 12, 2013, 12:38:25 PM
One suggestion I have is allowing the first month of M&F to be free. Its the "demo" of the game.

This is very, very, very difficult. I can think of a dozen ways to abuse this without needing to think. I know that people are used to free stuff and are very reluctant to pay anything, but I can not at this time imagine a way to have a demo without utterly destroying the entire game. I am serious. Give this some thought and you will agree. 90% of your knight offers being taken up by people who disappear after a day. Hundreds of dead-on-arrival nobles running around everywhere. It just can't work in a game like this.

What I'm thinking about is allowing players to buy just one month, no subscription, to test it out, maybe even at a reduced price, before signing up for the whole deal.

Another thing I'm thinking about is "friend codes", where every subscriber gets a certain amount of friend codes, say one per month, and can give them to friends to test the game for an even lower fee for a month. This limits the number of testers, and thus reduces the problems outlined above. And if one of your friends becomes a subscriber, you'll get some bonus time added to your subscription or something.


Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on April 12, 2013, 01:27:23 PM
Yeah, agreed, traditional demos won't work. We need to tread very carefully here.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Peri on April 12, 2013, 01:46:24 PM
One suggestion I have is allowing the first month of M&F to be free. Its the "demo" of the game.

This is very, very, very difficult. I can think of a dozen ways to abuse this without needing to think. I know that people are used to free stuff and are very reluctant to pay anything, but I can not at this time imagine a way to have a demo without utterly destroying the entire game. I am serious. Give this some thought and you will agree. 90% of your knight offers being taken up by people who disappear after a day. Hundreds of dead-on-arrival nobles running around everywhere. It just can't work in a game like this.

What I'm thinking about is allowing players to buy just one month, no subscription, to test it out, maybe even at a reduced price, before signing up for the whole deal.

Another thing I'm thinking about is "friend codes", where every subscriber gets a certain amount of friend codes, say one per month, and can give them to friends to test the game for an even lower fee for a month. This limits the number of testers, and thus reduces the problems outlined above. And if one of your friends becomes a subscriber, you'll get some bonus time added to your subscription or something.


You probably know this already, but in EVE online there is a 15-days free trial account to test the game. The way they made sure this trials don't ruin the game is to severely limit the game experience and player-to-player interaction of the free accounts. Free account basically can't really interact with the rest of the world and, for this reason, don't affect it in a detrimental way.


I don't think this model could work in M&F, but, well, I just wanted to give you this info.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on April 12, 2013, 01:51:43 PM

You probably know this already, but in EVE online there is a 15-days free trial account to test the game. The way they made sure this trials don't ruin the game is to severely limit the game experience and player-to-player interaction of the free accounts. Free account basically can't really interact with the rest of the world and, for this reason, don't affect it in a detrimental way.


I don't think this model could work in M&F, but, well, I just wanted to give you this info.


You are correct in assuming it won't, in contrast to EVE, everything you do in M&F actually has consequences and those consequences are basically the game, you can't run infinite NPC missions to conjure up money for your virtual pocket and then develop your character with that, there are no skills to train, no army dispensers. Tom is right, demos will kill the game. In the current implementation there is -literally- nothing to do if you limit demos severely enough to not fark up the game world. Well, I guess they could set some travel routs and troll people via messages a little for the lulz...
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 12, 2013, 03:55:21 PM
In its current incarnation, I know I will not be playing Might and Fealty. I love the games concept and almost everything about it. What I don't care for is those with plenty of time earlier on getting everything. All of the larger realms have players having about 8 characters with 5 or more estates while I look down their hierarchy they have knights that are other players with only 1 estate or some having none. The lack of players distributing their estates while the game provides no reason to if you have enough time to waste makes this seem like it will just be whoever has the most time to kill on this game are the most successful while the vassals of these players simply end up with little to nothing. I will get a more reasoning by my current thoughts in a bit.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Vita on April 12, 2013, 06:34:17 PM
One suggestion I have is allowing the first month of M&F to be free. Its the "demo" of the game.

Hype rarely gets me to buy a game I have never played before nor its company. Hype gets me interested, but I usually don't end up buying a game by a company I have played any of its games before without playing either a demo or just playing on someone else's game first if its a console. CK2 for instance has had plenty of hype on BM forums and irc which got me interested, but I never planned on buying it until I played the demo.

Thus, I suggest giving some kind of demo for any game, in this case simply being able to play a character for a month for free.

This will make it too easy to cheat with multis and be too difficult to restrict to per person. The *best* way I could see this implemented, is a separate 'newbie' island geared just for people getting a chance to test it out, but all accounts on  island end after 30 days so you don't get a chance to establish 'your history'. Any multiiing would be, relatively, pointless since it couldn't actually affect the for-pay game process. Those people too cheap, but with time, to spend on it would probably stil go. The 'newbie' island multi would probably be one of rotating accounts, being sure to  assign inheritance to the newer account before 30 days.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Indirik on April 12, 2013, 07:12:09 PM
Nobody would play on the newbie island. Except maybe the multi-trollers. Not exactly a good way to entice new players to ante up their hard-earned cash for the real game.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on April 12, 2013, 07:21:25 PM
This game has a staggeringly high potential for trolling in general. With great freedom comes great... trolling, and great paraphilia.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Fulco on April 12, 2013, 09:35:32 PM
Quote
What I'm thinking about is allowing players to buy just one month, no subscription, to test it out, maybe even at a reduced price, before signing up for the whole deal.


Pay to try something out? That won't get you many subscriptions, you want to make it as easy as possible for people to try a game, reward them for trying and staying active in the beginning actually. Else your player base won't grow.


And personally, I'm against having to pay to play a game. And I doubt that I will play this game if it comes out if it will cost me money each week/month with having to keep playing to not lose everything. Really, go for something like extra characters, where you pay to be able to play more, but keep the first character free. Yes, this might get you multies, but that's life of a browsergame.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Valast on April 12, 2013, 09:53:05 PM
Well... I already respected you Tom but you have it more over now from your stand on honesty...and I agree with it.

Unfortunately it also means that the game will have a very slow start up.  After the initial BM induced influx of players it will slow down to a trickle.  That is a good thing in the long run for honest player base...but a bad thing for making good profit quickly.  But I do not know your desire, intent, or need...

I do have one suggestion on trying to get new players that may be able to help stop the trash at the door... Offer friend codes like you mentioned, but also let players buy a friend a month.  Lets say we are paying 10million dollars a month to play and we have a friend we think would like to join... let us pay 2million bucks to buy our friend a month to get into it.  If they like it they can pick up the tab from then on.

They get a trial, we get a friend playing with us, you get a new player and a chance at a new subscriber.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 13, 2013, 12:13:39 AM
Definitely. Gifts work in many other games.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 08:22:22 PM
Why not just make the friend codes work as 15 day free trials?


Give each paying player 2 friend codes a month. If one of the people getting the trial pays for the game, it gives the original player a discount on their next month or two (maybe 50% off the next two months, so effectively a free month but only if you pay for two more). It would be limited, and you would only get the codes if you are paying. And they would only work for new accounts. Seems like it could work that way.


The subscription could give you points towards buying cosmetic items too, and maybe some bonus points every month for every referred friend that is currently paying for the game. The cosmetic stuff could be like any time name changes for characters, heraldry, changing the appearance of towns, renaming towns, etc. It could all be available occasionally with the points from a subscription or something a player can pay a little extra for if he wanted to use them a lot.




As far as if I'd pay to play: I wouldn't pay to play in the current state (Alpha) but with the ideas of the game realized and polished a bit I would.


One thing that would be nice bit of polish is a way to queue actions for people who aren't online when turns happen. Like say I want to march to a town and attack it. I could tell it to go there and attack. It would travel there (1st turn), begin attack (2nd turn), and carry out the battle (3rd turn). It would also be nice if you could put a conditional order on the result of that battle. Like IF I defeat all defenders, claim control of the town, recruit 5 peasants to keep someone else from claiming it, and defend the town against attack. ELSE IF the attack fails run away back to your city for reinforcements. That way if you were online before the battle happened but couldn't be back on for 12 hours you could be sure that it wouldn't just leave the door open for someone else to grab the town. Or say build X building, then once that's done build Y building using the same division of labor. Or start recruiting X medium infantry once the heavy infantry are done training.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 13, 2013, 08:44:23 PM
Tom has stated, which is completely true, the issue with friend codes is the massive loss of troops from people accepting knight offers or simply being given troops and then when the trial is over the troops are basically just lost.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on April 13, 2013, 10:15:54 PM
Tom has stated, which is completely true, the issue with friend codes is the massive loss of troops from people accepting knight offers or simply being given troops and then when the trial is over the troops are basically just lost.


That is going to happen in general and friend codes would not be the main source of it, this is the kind of game that retains only a modest percentage of players by default.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Paul on April 14, 2013, 12:44:47 AM
Tom has stated, which is completely true, the issue with friend codes is the massive loss of troops from people accepting knight offers or simply being given troops and then when the trial is over the troops are basically just lost.


A fix for that could be coded easily. Make it so that whoever you accept a knight offer from becomes your character's heir, and you can't change your heir or change fealty unless you buy the game. Should the trial expire, the char could be "killed" and all his troops and property moved to his heir. Should he decide to purchase game time later chars could just be in limbo where you can select where to spawn them again and you could easily accept the knight offer again and get back to where you left off.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Bubba on April 14, 2013, 04:08:25 AM
There needs to be a demo mode. There are many people out there for which no demo is a show-stopper. Accounts with landless knights should be free, or something.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 14, 2013, 01:28:57 PM
One thing that would be nice bit of polish is a way to queue actions for people who aren't online when turns happen. Like say I want to march to a town and attack it. I could tell it to go there and attack. It would travel there (1st turn), begin attack (2nd turn), and carry out the battle (3rd turn). It would also be nice if you could put a conditional order on the result of that battle.

Yes to the first, no to the second.

I already have plans and notes in the code to implement useful chains, especially the move-and-attack one. But it's a bit down the road before you'll see that in the game.

There won't be conditionals like the ones you imagine, simply because I don't want the game to be scripted and automated in this way. Whereas by "this way" I mean things like making these soft decisions. We had a discussion about the battle code not saying who won, simply because victory is subjective and depends on your goals.

There will be conditionals, but they will have clear, immediate and obvious conditions. "battle won" is not one of them (see other discussion). But one conditional that will certainly be there is something that basically says "attack any enemies moving into my action range".
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 14, 2013, 01:30:56 PM
There needs to be a demo mode. There are many people out there for which no demo is a show-stopper.

I realize that, but I will not destroy the game for it.


Quote
Accounts with landless knights should be free, or something.

No. Period, end of discussion, over my dead body, will not happen. The sheer amount of game-ability, cheating possibilities and other abuses means that this would ruin the game for the people who pay. And the people who pay are the ones that matter, because I need to pay bills, too.


Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 14, 2013, 11:04:18 PM
There needs to be a demo mode. There are many people out there for which no demo is a show-stopper.

I realize that, but I will not destroy the game for it.


Quote
Accounts with landless knights should be free, or something.

No. Period, end of discussion, over my dead body, will not happen. The sheer amount of game-ability, cheating possibilities and other abuses means that this would ruin the game for the people who pay. And the people who pay are the ones that matter, because I need to pay bills, too.
What about somebodies else's idea of limiting their fealty to whoever they originally did through the knight offer, then when their trial ends, their liege gets whatever troops are left back.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Indirik on April 15, 2013, 12:21:40 AM
Still highly exploitable.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 15, 2013, 01:01:45 AM
What about somebodies else's idea of limiting their fealty to whoever they originally did through the knight offer, then when their trial ends, their liege gets whatever troops are left back.

It's an interesting idea that I will consider when building the friend codes, gift, etc. systems, but it still won't work for a free demo.


Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Norrel on April 16, 2013, 06:58:47 AM
This game will be dead on arrival without some sort of free to play experience. I would have never played BM if I had to pay cash up front, and neither would any of the people I recruited. WoW and EVE are games with infinitely higher production values and marketing budgets but even they need a free to play demo. I don't know of a single person in the entire universe who would stumble on MnF and be willing to shovel cash onto it. You'll get some tiny fraction of the BM and alpha audience and then that'll be it.


I'm saying this as someone who has put like 100 euros into BM and would probably do more if he could, so it's not exactly like I've got a tight purse or something. There is a 0% chance of this game going anywhere if the first thing people see is "give me 5 bucks" before experiencing the game.


Hell, if you just want to confirm that people aren't endlessly making new characters or abandoning new accounts (which isn't really a big problem, the same thing happens in BM), just make them do a $0.00 transaction to confirm their unique identity. That's already enough effort to qualify for the foot-in-the-door phenomenon so you'll get far less insta-dropping players.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Vita on April 16, 2013, 09:00:03 AM
I quite agree that the game won't do well without a demo opportunity, however its ultimately structured.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 16, 2013, 10:34:54 AM
This game will be dead on arrival without some sort of free to play experience.

That's a risk I have to take.

Again, the game CAN NOT provide an adequate demo experience. Any limitations of the gameplay that prevent the free demo mode from entirely destroying the game for the paying customer would also turn the demo experience into something that is not representative of the game itself.

The "demo" will have to work the old-fashioned way - through videos, text, showing people the game, but not by letting them play it. I realize this will mean lots of people won't even give it a try. But I will NOT destroy the game for those who pay just so I get a higher market share. Existing, paying customers are more important than potential future customers and should not have their gameplay compromised.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Norrel on April 16, 2013, 10:59:51 AM
This game will be dead on arrival without some sort of free to play experience.

That's a risk I have to take.

Again, the game CAN NOT provide an adequate demo experience. Any limitations of the gameplay that prevent the free demo mode from entirely destroying the game for the paying customer would also turn the demo experience into something that is not representative of the game itself.

The "demo" will have to work the old-fashioned way - through videos, text, showing people the game, but not by letting them play it. I realize this will mean lots of people won't even give it a try. But I will NOT destroy the game for those who pay just so I get a higher market share. Existing, paying customers are more important than potential future customers and should not have their gameplay compromised.


It's not a risk, it is a certainty. You literally have a 0% chance of having this expand beyond a small subsection of the BM population without it. Hell, I'd probably not get it if I hadn't tried a demo (the alpha) first, something which won't even be afforded to the people who haven't played BM yet, AKA the people who need it the most.


I am an existing, paying customer. And my gameplay will be ruined without a decent playerbase. As someone who is ready and willing to pay out the ass for this game, don't charge for it up front. I liked the idea where non-subscribers can't progress beyond knighthood, and you could easily have their stuff revert to their liege-lord if they quit. What's wrong with that idea? Not only does it fix the problem, but it'll supply the game with a bunch of knights, making the lords feel even more important - that is to say, making the subscribers even happier, because they're gods among gods.


In BM, if someone joins and then quits a few days after, that's still a success. That's still someone who was interested enough that he was willing to spend 5 minutes of his only life to see if it was worth his time. And it's not like having lots of dropout characters ruined BM.


You made BM work under this model, and this game is basically a sequel. I'm sure you're smart enough to figure out a way. A number of other suggestions have been proposed that seemed promising.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 16, 2013, 12:26:45 PM
In BM, every character created adds resources to the game, because he comes with some and they are created from thin air.

In M&F, every character created substracts resources from the game, because he has nothing of his own and whatever he starts with (in the form of knight offers) had to be produced by others first.

I know you mean well. I'm just not sure that world has already gone to hell in a handbasket and people aren't willing to pay for stuff anymore.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Foxglove on April 16, 2013, 04:25:45 PM
What about having an interactive tutorial instead of a demo? I mean a tutorial that's not in the actual game world but where they still get the chance to click the appropriate buttons, guiding the potential player through how to create a character and place it in the game world, basic managment of the menus for a settlement, how to travel, how to initiate combat, etc. Essentially, an interactive simulation of the first steps they'll take in the game world.

I realize it's impossible to put the social aspect of the game into a tutorial, but it would give the potential player a chance to see what the game's about, and see the look of screens and the (eventual) map graphics. I also think something like that would help players feel less overwhelmed at first if they do enter the full game.

When looking at board games and other products, I've often gone to Youtube to see how they play before deciding whether or not to buy them. It seems like a tutorial mode here might serve the same purpose.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Utleth on April 16, 2013, 04:31:03 PM
I think the best idea that I have seen thus far was to have a separate demo island, and an island for paying customers. Make the demo island massive, and make each account start a fair distance from others. 2 or 3 characters per account, 1 account per person (as far as possible, with multi-detecting etc). Two week trial. So everyone gets to do building, taking settlements, etc. Make all the unclaimed settlements have a small militia, and the people start off with a few forces to defeat them at the initial settlement, and get to do fighting to see how exp works.


Of course, there would not be that much player interaction, such as realms etc, and you wouldn't be able to carry over achievements to the paid map (unless there would be an option to continue playing the map if you are paying...not sure if that would be desirable). Then, of course, as mentioned, people might just try to slaughter others that spawn nearby, but that is why there would be a distance factor.

[size=78%]I can't really see any other type free model working, if a free model would be desired by Tom (from previous posts I realise that it isn't, but if there should be a change...)[/size]

A tutorial, as Foxglove suggests, would also be quite cool :)
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Zangi on April 16, 2013, 06:28:45 PM

Really, the only way to get this browser game off when it does start with full P2P is... lots of marketing.  Get the word out to review sites and have em talk about it, but... they'll need something to look at/preview...

Word of mouth and recommendations from Alpha ain't going to cut it alone.


If I may recommend...  a 14 day trial to go along with the launch, fully refundable if they don't like it.  If you Kickstart it, you probably can't do the refund thing.  But at least throw in 'free days' to first time subscriptions.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Azerax on April 16, 2013, 06:44:34 PM
There is a reason companies give out free samples, it works.
However, as I see it:  If I go out to lunch with a friend for wings and beer, it'll cost $25 - $40.
I did not get a free sample there, but I knew what to expect, cold beer and probably mediocre wings (I'm a wing snob).  If I'm happy to spend $25-$40 for cold beer and wings, why can't I put that towards a monthly fee?  I know that Tom makes good games, so I'm happy to do it.
cheers,
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 16, 2013, 06:57:24 PM
What about having an interactive tutorial instead of a demo? I mean a tutorial that's not in the actual game world but where they still get the chance to click the appropriate buttons, guiding the potential player through how to create a character and place it in the game world, basic managment of the menus for a settlement, how to travel, how to initiate combat, etc. Essentially, an interactive simulation of the first steps they'll take in the game world.

That could work.


I think the best idea that I have seen thus far was to have a separate demo island, and an island for paying customers.

That won't work. The "demo island" will be in no way representative of the game.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 16, 2013, 07:01:38 PM
Everything is about expectations.

People expect stuff on the Internet to be free in general, while nobody wonders why they can't get a few free bites at the local pizza hut first. There's no logical reason to either, it's just that one is common and the other not.

I will need marketing, not necessary lots, but good marketing that sets Might & Fealty away from browsergames. This is not a browsergame. It just happens that because I'm better at PHP then I am at C++, the first client will be a browser client. But I will show the end vision (you can see part of it in the alpha 2 trailer) prominently, because that's where I want to go to.

Why am I doing it as a browser game? Because that's what I can do quickly, and gameplay trumps graphics. However, the sheer amount of data in the game will require a standalone client sooner or later. It will do my servers a ton of good to not have to send out graphics of the map again and again - storing the map data client-side will be a requirement to making it more detailed.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Foxglove on April 16, 2013, 08:02:59 PM

Really, the only way to get this browser game off when it does start with full P2P is... lots of marketing.  Get the word out to review sites and have em talk about it, but... they'll need something to look at/preview...

This is something that's already being tried - see the Marketing thread. But everyone can help to spread the word in small ways. I've been keeping an eye on the posting I made four days ago on the computerandvideogames.com forum with a link to M&F, and it's been viewed 30 times. I'll admit that's not a lot, but postings on different forums will slowly help to lift the profile of M&F.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 17, 2013, 12:59:40 PM
For those interested in the payment system, go to your profile page now and check out what I've put there.

The payment system (incomplete as it is) should now become more clear. The simple concept is that you pay once per week, and payment increases slightly with number of characters. By "slightly" I mean that every character adds 1% to the base fee, and only active and alive characters count.

To discern that, I've added a new activity detector to characters. It only starts today, so you won't see a result for the next three weeks, but here's what you will then see on the character page of people who've gone inactive (or have let individual characters of theirs gone inactive, because it's per-character, not per-player):
(https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/9638874/mf-alpha-20130417a.png)


I think it's pretty cool. :-)


There's also some more text on the account page that you should read. And please test the system out yourself with the fake payment buttons I've added. I have also run a weekly payment cycle on all accounts already, so the 7 of you who already tried it out will see that in their credit history.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 17, 2013, 05:22:30 PM
And I've also just added texts for the initial in-game credit spending options. They are on your account page:

http://mightandfealty.com/account/credits

Check them out. I'm pretty excited about these options, though of course it'll be a while until they are actually available, and for some of them I need the crowdfunding first so I can pay an artist.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 17, 2013, 08:00:10 PM
And I've also just added texts for the initial in-game credit spending options. They are on your account page:

http://mightandfealty.com/account/credits (http://mightandfealty.com/account/credits)

Check them out. I'm pretty excited about these options, though of course it'll be a while until they are actually available, and for some of them I need the crowdfunding first so I can pay an artist.
Looks great. My 2 suggestions are this, that for heraldry you can gift it to others while keeping it yourself/not force the player to not let anyone else have it. My other suggestion is simply having credit purchase and credit consumption be in the same table.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 17, 2013, 10:45:23 PM
I'm trying to keep the individual pages clean, same with bridges and roads - but I'll probably add a quick link to switch directly between them.

As for gifting heraldry... I'm thinking a few things here that are not yet finished. I am thinking that marriage partners or children of characters that use a crest might have the right to use that same crest as well. I definitely want an IG-reason.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: feyeleanor on April 18, 2013, 04:50:28 PM
I will need marketing, not necessary lots, but good marketing that sets Might & Fealty away from browsergames. This is not a browsergame. It just happens that because I'm better at PHP then I am at C++, the first client will be a browser client. But I will show the end vision (you can see part of it in the alpha 2 trailer) prominently, because that's where I want to go to.

Why am I doing it as a browser game? Because that's what I can do quickly, and gameplay trumps graphics. However, the sheer amount of data in the game will require a standalone client sooner or later. It will do my servers a ton of good to not have to send out graphics of the map again and again - storing the map data client-side will be a requirement to making it more detailed.


It'll also do your servers the world of good to move from PHP to a compiled language once the codebase has stabilised. When you get to that stage have a play with Google Go - it's a very easy language to pick up and quite well suited to this kind of project.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on April 18, 2013, 10:31:01 PM
It'll also do your servers the world of good to move from PHP to a compiled language once the codebase has stabilised. When you get to that stage have a play with Google Go - it's a very easy language to pick up and quite well suited to this kind of project.

I'll not re-write the whole thing. I'm using a bytecache already, so compiling isn't an issue. Besides, if your frontend code is slowing you down, you've done something horribly wrong anyways, and it's not the programming language. :-)


The server-side is the last thing I worry about. I've got enough experience in that area.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Laurens88 on April 21, 2013, 02:46:02 PM
What about having an interactive tutorial instead of a demo?

When a friend of mine created Madina in Dwilight (Battlemaster) he made a small intro lure (wikia) to show possible new players the culture and ways of Madina. We made a small lure/history of the Island and the region. I liked it very much and something like that could be done in the same way to introduce new players to the game and the mechanics.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Penchant on April 22, 2013, 05:53:14 AM
What about having an interactive tutorial instead of a demo?

When a friend of mine created Madina in Dwilight (Battlemaster) he made a small intro lure (wikia) to show possible new players the culture and ways of Madina. We made a small lure/history of the Island and the region. I liked it very much and something like that could be done in the same way to introduce new players to the game and the mechanics.
Got a link?
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Laurens88 on April 22, 2013, 04:29:14 PM
What about having an interactive tutorial instead of a demo?

When a friend of mine created Madina in Dwilight (Battlemaster) he made a small intro lure (wikia) to show possible new players the culture and ways of Madina. We made a small lure/history of the Island and the region. I liked it very much and something like that could be done in the same way to introduce new players to the game and the mechanics.
Got a link?

http://wiki.battlemaster.org/wiki/Madina_%28Realm%29

Click 'set sail to the lands of Madina'  :)
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: MacManus on May 22, 2013, 03:52:33 AM
I would most definitely pay to play if paying to play didn't mean pay to win.

i.e. if it only unlocked certain aesthetic features like the heraldry designer at a certain tier... family trees, etc... nothing that affected the actual play, the max amount of characters, etc.

Because if someone wanted to pay for max tier and have ALL the characters they could easily do a lot more than someone paying from a lower tier which I don't think is the goal of most games, pay to win that is.

It also discourages the need to communicate and interact with other players.

My 2c
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on May 22, 2013, 11:52:06 AM
I am absolutely 100% strongly opposed to any pay2win schemes.

While you can pay more to play more characters, that's a burden as well as an advantage. There is going to be stuff in the game that wasn't in the alpha, such as imprisonment and ransom, that will level things out a lot. Also, perceptions are twisted right now because the alpha started without ANY limit on a clean map, which gave people incentives to create a ton of characters just to take settlements. A lot has changed since then and that "strategy" won't work again.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Utleth on May 22, 2013, 12:49:10 PM


While you can pay more to play more characters, that's a burden as well as an advantage. There is going to be stuff in the game that wasn't in the alpha, such as imprisonment and ransom, that will level things out a lot.


I was controlling quite a lot of characters, and while it was interesting it also takes a lot of work even at this early, simplified stage. However, the main thing that I was doing was stockpiling troops and improving settlements. And this was slightly boring.


Once mobile troops start eating, and they need stocks of equipment to train, and all the resources come into play, it will be a serious pain to try "god-mode" a realm. Add to this the fact that you will be regularly missing one or two turns per day...and it will become more difficult. And just wait until someone declares war - that will totally ruin your free time.


The main focus of the game is interaction, and without it, it will be really boring self-managing a realm.


Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Mookzen on May 22, 2013, 08:46:14 PM
Fortunately I have a job which enables me to do my own stuff whenever I please. (also donate to the game generously)


'Now, I am become godmode-realm, the misser of no turns.'
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Utleth on May 23, 2013, 11:15:48 AM
Fortunately I have a job which enables me to do my own stuff whenever I please. (also donate to the game generously)



Got any vacancies?
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: JeanLuc on October 30, 2013, 05:32:15 PM
Me personally,I say yes I would pay to play this game as I already play on Tom's battlemaster and I think it's awesome although I don't do much role-playing on BM because I'm a very weak RP'er.Still I have fun with it weather or not I RP on BM and I feel I would have the same fun on M&F too.

Besides,to run,maintain,add new things,and to create a game like this takes money.Lots of money now days.Especially when we want Tom and his friends to create the ultimate RPG ever for us and to see them do their absolute best with this game and more.

So all in all,yes I would pay to play this game even though I can't right now because of my money situation.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: MacManus on November 15, 2013, 03:06:58 AM
I would most definitely pay to play if paying to play didn't mean pay to win.

i.e. if it only unlocked certain aesthetic features like the heraldry designer at a certain tier... family trees, etc... nothing that affected the actual play, the max amount of characters, etc.

Because if someone wanted to pay for max tier and have ALL the characters they could easily do a lot more than someone paying from a lower tier which I don't think is the goal of most games, pay to win that is.

It also discourages the need to communicate and interact with other players.

My 2c


It's happening. This is exactly what I thought would happen.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Bubba on November 15, 2013, 05:47:21 AM

It's happening. This is exactly what I thought would happen.


Hey, no need to get all ominous and foreboding on us. Before you started sending me messages about your story being ruined, I just thought we were all relaxing and having fun on an informal alpha test where the craziness we got into and tested out didn't matter much. If it means that much to you, I'll delete the characters after the turn rolls.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: De-Legro on November 15, 2013, 06:11:12 AM

Hey, no need to get all ominous and foreboding on us. Before you started sending me messages about your story being ruined, I just thought we were all relaxing and having fun on an informal alpha test where the craziness we got into and tested out didn't matter much. If it means that much to you, I'll delete the characters after the turn rolls.


So what did we learn from this test?


And did you have to pass those soliders around after joining the battle in order to get 22 nobles to join a battle with only 15 men between them? I've never been able to get a noble to join a battle without troops.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on November 15, 2013, 11:31:23 AM

It's happening. This is exactly what I thought would happen.

Which is why we're having this test. :-)
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Bubba on November 15, 2013, 12:09:41 PM
And did you have to pass those soliders around after joining the battle in order to get 22 nobles to join a battle with only 15 men between them? I've never been able to get a noble to join a battle without troops.


Yep. You can get 30 nobles into the fray with 15 soldiers, by passing the soldiers around.


Anyway, I completely eradicated that Mongol horde nonsense. Not worth the aggro.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on November 15, 2013, 02:44:58 PM
Yep. You can get 30 nobles into the fray with 15 soldiers, by passing the soldiers around.

which I will fix soon.


Not yet sure about the noble-without-soldiers-in-battle. You see, I don't want individual nobles to be able to attack, loot and take settlements.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: De-Legro on November 15, 2013, 02:51:43 PM
As to the original question of this thread. Yes I would pay to play. The asking amount is pretty modest, the game even at this point is pretty fun. The only thing that I see slowing it down is if we don't get enough players.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on November 15, 2013, 03:06:32 PM
Player count will be a challenge.

And, btw., I just fixed one particular exploit: You can no longer have a ton of characters "in reserve" to spawn at will.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tan dSerrai on November 15, 2013, 03:12:41 PM


Not yet sure about the noble-without-soldiers-in-battle. You see, I don't want individual nobles to be able to attack, loot and take settlements.


I understand that - but currently we are having a tank being unable to attack - but a tank accompanied by a completely useless soldier being able to.

Maybe make a lone noble able to _join_ all attacks....but only able to initiate attacks against, looting of or takeovers of settlements if the soldiers accompanying him pass a certain treshold. Or - probably better - enable a lone noble to do all these things, but increase the risk he takes: A single noble looting a 1000 strong village? 30% chance of being brained by a flowerpot thrown from the rafters. (the more badly outnumbered, the higher the risk of death or capture with an exponentially rising curve)
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: De-Legro on November 15, 2013, 03:26:04 PM
which I will fix soon.


Not yet sure about the noble-without-soldiers-in-battle. You see, I don't want individual nobles to be able to attack, loot and take settlements.


Is this going to be a real concern long term though? Once regions start to get their walls up and have decent militia?
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tan dSerrai on November 15, 2013, 04:52:34 PM
Player count will be a challenge.

And, btw., I just fixed one particular exploit: You can no longer have a ton of characters "in reserve" to spawn at will.

Glad to hear!
Still, nobles are a ressource - and there will surely be those who want to 'maximise' that ressource. So if you have only a limited maximum number of 'currently spawnable' nobles we will surely see those who always spawn their maximum possible - and simply keep them in reserve at a settlement.

A suggestion would be to slow down 'new noble availiability' and 'time until newly created noble can enter the gameworld'. Meaning the more nobles you have, the longer it takes to get a new noble and the longer it takes for him to become 'availiable/useable/movable after creation'. This would give players with fewer nobles faster reaction times.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on November 15, 2013, 05:22:42 PM
Slowing down won't work for the same reason you outline - people will simply fill the queue. What it would do is piss of people, because they want to play and can't.

Spawned nobles are not a problem. Keep them at some settlement, fine with me. That means they are days or weeks away from where the action is. Instant spawning right where the battle is was a problem.

Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Valast on November 16, 2013, 12:00:08 AM
Too many bosses and not enough workers... I have worked in firms like this before and the end result is always delays and confusion.  Would a battle of many nobles without armies not be the same?

Now if you have 10 nobles in a battle but they are not leading armies (or very small ones), then orders begin to become confusing, egos begin to show, you have to watch your own back for betrayal.  Who is in charge of the battle?  They all want their part of the glory by nature.

However give a noble an army and they are busy leading it.  The army is power... they are a tool to be used but at the same time they are loyal to you and watch your back.

So in other words... reduce the power of multiple individual nobles when attacking unless they have armies.  10 soldiers is a good round number but a sliding scale could be used.  If someone spawns 10 nobles to attack you, he would need 100 solders to do the job without risking the nobles.  If he does it anyway...and those nobles are killed/captured/wounded in the process then the player is no longer able to use that as a way to advance and instead will be forced on the defensive.

It also becomes a reason for nobles with troops to hand them out to others.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: De-Legro on November 16, 2013, 12:11:52 AM
Too many bosses and not enough workers... I have worked in firms like this before and the end result is always delays and confusion.  Would a battle of many nobles without armies not be the same?

Now if you have 10 nobles in a battle but they are not leading armies (or very small ones), then orders begin to become confusing, egos begin to show, you have to watch your own back for betrayal.  Who is in charge of the battle?  They all want their part of the glory by nature.

However give a noble an army and they are busy leading it.  The army is power... they are a tool to be used but at the same time they are loyal to you and watch your back.

So in other words... reduce the power of multiple individual nobles when attacking unless they have armies.  10 soldiers is a good round number but a sliding scale could be used.  If someone spawns 10 nobles to attack you, he would need 100 solders to do the job without risking the nobles.  If he does it anyway...and those nobles are killed/captured/wounded in the process then the player is no longer able to use that as a way to advance and instead will be forced on the defensive.

It also becomes a reason for nobles with troops to hand them out to others.

That is a very interesting suggestion.
Title: Re: Would You Pay to Play?
Post by: Tom on November 16, 2013, 12:59:47 PM
A part of that actually exists already. One of the things that troops do is offer targets.

If you go into battle with 1 noble and 20 soldiers, only 1 in 20 (21 actually) attacks will hit a noble.
If you go into battle with 20 nobles, every attack will hit a noble.

Despite their plenty, nobles actually ARE a limited resource. As I said before: You can probably pull this trick once.