So this far into the Free-2-Play adventures it’s plain to all that there are frequently some tactics used to help customers part with their recently purchased coins/cash/tokens/crowns/points. However most companies seem to have some morals and don’t kick the arse out of it too much with the occasional item once every 3 to 6 months.
Additionally it is frequently some cosmetic item/armour or a new/unique horse.
However so far SOEs plan seems to be different, by making weapons unlockable with station cash many people see it as a “Win Button” approach and I have to say to a degree it sometimes feels like it. At this point I’d much rather a subscription game than the half and half model, which to be honest feels greedy.
However what appears to be happening at the moment is that SOE announce and release a new weapon, which once players have their hands on it turns out to be highly overpowered.
Once word of this gets into the mainstream player base there is a rush as everyone spends their Station Cash on the new Flavour of the week/month weapon, normally trying to get in on the action before SOE take a nerf-bat to it.
Of course the outcome is that SOE announce that it will be de-buffed in some way in the next patch, but not the worry as here is a brand new overpowered weapon to make up for it, just spend another 700 station cash and you can be a kill-whore like your friends.
As you can see the problem is due to two man factors:
- No testing server has been given but I hear it’s coming soon, lets hope they listen to feedback rather than ignoring it as they mostly did with Beta.
- The internal playtest/balancing is being done by SOE isn’t picking up any problems with these weapons. Now concerning that may of the devs claim to be life-long Planetside players, why aren’t they flagging these overpowered items before they hit the live servers?
All of this ultimately makes me believe this continual delivery of game wrecking functionality is being purely driven by SOE as part of their strategy to milk the players for as much as possible.Bit of a shame really.
Perhaps it’s just me, perhaps I’m that tied up with this game more than other F2P titles that I have most likely missed it happening to this extent elsewhere.
What are your experiences?
Many games claim to be the best of it’s genre, you will certainly find their descriptions littered with buzzwords like ‘unique’,'sandbox’,'cutting edge’. Of course many of a games features don’t appeal to all players and one persons holy grail is anothers poisoned chalice, Pinning down the qualities that make a game good isn’t a simple task.
I, like many, have sat and played a countless number of games over my gaming history, with a varied mixture of on/off line, single/multi player games. I like to feel my hype-amour is well worn & rusty at the edges, taking a game on it’s own merits not those pumped out by the PR machine.
I’m interested in what elements people find makes a game good, what makes it stand out from the crowd. I plan to list the elements of those games that have given me something different and the items that make you coming back for more.
I’ve highlighted games that I believe fit the bill for the game qualities I like. To make life easier I had to split out MMOs from other games due to their unique natures.
- Pretty graphics is a poor substitute for good gameplay
- Too much dependence on the hottest new engine or graphical twist, games should be just as fun running on the lowest settings as well as the top settings (Assassins Creed)
- Whether you dive back into a new game straight away or in 6 months time, it’s the interesting and exciting elements that draw you back in, these tend to be RTS games that I have long term addictions with. (Roller Coaster Tycoon, Dawn of War II )
- Make it tough not impossible
- Nothing is more annoying than getting deep into a game only to get stuck on a seemingly impossible area, Left4Dead is good example of this in action, the Director controller manages overall gameplay making adjustments on the fly to enhance the overall player experience.
- Not level dependant
- Games that don’t care about max level in a traditionl sense, where there is still plenty of content once you get to the maximum level. (Guild Wars)
- I also found the idea of a game were levels don’t equal more power, just increases the diversity of the avatar and game-play (Guild Wars, Planetside)
- Enjoyable without Goals
- I enjoy a game were I can play for 6 hours straight and not really achieve anything, but I can still walk away with a smile. Entertaining games that make the time fly.
- Grouping with friends of any level/skill
- As gamers become more social it’s only natural for them to want to play alongside friends both online and real-life, systems and methods that all (Planetside, City of Heroes)
- Realistic achievements
- Increasing more game ship with a slew of merits that drive players to go out of their way to obtain a predetermined goals.
So what game elements appeal the most to you?
What drives you to fireup a game time and time again?
Having more information about my gaming habits than usual I thought it maybe worth talking a peek at the figures and try and create something meaningful.
So I dug back through the posts that GamerDNA creates based on my XFire account information. Handling this information is something that GamerDNA manages very well, without it I’d have no way of tracking this data.
As you can see I’m now the proud owner of a rather swanky looking graph (that took me far too long to generate with the Google Chart API). I am hoping to automate the process for future versions, allowing me to track this over the next year.
On closer inspection of my graph you will notice that 2 games appear very briefly Medal of Honor: Airbourne and Battle for middle earth 2.
I have to admit that neither game delivered much for me to sink my teeth into. I was unable to retain interest once the main story/campaign mode was finished.
An important note to self : I must remember to turn on XFire before I start gaming. I shall try and generate a graph over the upcoming months based on the same information source.