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[NETWORK NEWS] EverQuest II is Going Free-to-Play

Discussion in 'UHall' started by watchertoo, Jul 27, 2010.

  1. watchertoo

    watchertoo Sage
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    This just in from Stratics Central:

    [size=+1]EverQuest II is Going Free-to-Play[/size]

    TGN Stratics got a first-hand interview today with Dave Georgeson, the EverQuest II senior producer.

    You can find everything you need to know about EQ2 free-to-play directly from the source HERE.
     
  2. kelmo

    kelmo Old and in the way
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    Holy cow!
     
  3. Amber Moon

    Amber Moon Seasoned Veteran
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    Its the hot thing to do in the industry now, after the success Turbine had with DDO.

    The F2P is pretty restricted in all these games, supported by a big cash store and subscription options.

    Yes, UO could learn a lesson and probably should have gone this route a year ago. But its a big development effort and I don't think you will see it happen here.
     
  4. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
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    Well, they were all ready to make UO f2p years ago, but then mytic took over and canned the idea. Would have been the first major game to do so,

    It works, and UO should move toward it.
     
  5. Cear Dallben Dragon

    Cear Dallben Dragon Babbling Loonie
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    lol, should this not go to off topic?
    just messin, but yeah....
     
  6. kelmo

    kelmo Old and in the way
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    I find it oddly on topic... *winks*
     
  7. Jackson

    Jackson Guest

    UO wouldnt have to go free to play.
    All they would have to do is just reduce the subscription fee and they would get more people or more accounts.
    $13 to play a 13 year old game is kind of crazy with the many new games out there.
     
  8. Well, does that hurt UO? I never thought much of EQ2, but would people who like UO care abou this? I mean would UO players go do that instead of UO?

    Well, these are brand new servers. UO could do this...
     
  9. kelmo

    kelmo Old and in the way
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    *smiles* If UO went free, would you pay for items and access? Now it is topical... and even redundant.
     
  10. Mapper

    Mapper Crazed Zealot
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    It would be hard to convert existing accounts I think.

    They would need to make it so a 7 character account with house and skill cap of 720 costs the same as the monthly fees now.

    Then have free accounts with very limited options, no housing, skill/stat cap, 2-3 characters perhaps.

    It's a neat idea and I think it would do UO good.
     
  11. The article says that these are brand new servers seperate from their existing servers.
     
  12. Mapper

    Mapper Crazed Zealot
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    Sorry I was talking about what it would take to convert UO to FTP. :(
     
  13. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
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    They could easily just do regular shards, and free to play shards. Just a simple way to go there, but I think it would work. Lots of games do that very set up.
     
  14. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    Does this mean UO wins?
     
  15. Harlequin

    Harlequin Babbling Loonie
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    Then they won't need to use HTTP.

    :gee:
     
  16. Harlequin

    Harlequin Babbling Loonie
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    Maybe even consider 5 bucks per month for each extra house.
     
  17. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    I hate f2p... hate, hate, hate it. It ends up being more expensive in the long run, and changes the emphasis in the game from game play, to how much you are willing to spend on the game. This would be a horrible idea. I don't care how well it worked for DDO.

    Lower your subscription fees, stop bilking your clients an extra $50 a year for "must have" expansions and general crap, and it would have the same effect as going f2p. What CCP is doing with EVE is the way you handle a subscription based mmo, and I wish to hell someone in EA would pay attention to what they do over there...
     
  18. Babble

    Babble Guest

    EA still dreams to be like wow whose players buy all expansions and extra items and pay a monthly fee!
    :p
     
  19. I don't really care if it goes F2P, but I would certainly be willing to pay a $200.00 one-time lifetime membership fee per account. This could enable them to build up a store of cash for future development while opening up options for F2P later on.
     
  20. Nothing is free to play.
    You all understand that right.

    Should read free to log in and partially mess around.

    If its 100% access 100% free-play I apologize.
     
  21. Cirno

    Cirno Purple Pony Princess
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    I think it depends on how you define "play"
    I don't believe that access to the complete game is required to "play" the game.

    Playing a stripped-down free-to-play MMO would be a little like playing a UO account that was only upgraded to Samurai Empire, before they opened up Mondain's Legacy to everyone.
    You're still playing, although you're limited in what you can do.
    When I first learned to play chess, I learned the basic moves of all the pieces, but it was some time before I learned about castling, and en passant. Even without having "access" to those moves, I was still playing the game.
     
  22. Lady Storm

    Lady Storm Crazed Zealot
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    Welp i guess my son will be pulling out his old account on EQ2 for some other deversion. I use ot play it too once wonder if i can still access my old account ??

    To answer someones question above:
    Yes you can play more than 1 game and still keep the status quo in uo. I myself play WoW, UO, Diablo2, and Starcraft. I'll most likely add in EQ2 to the mix. It keeps me from saying I'm bored(hint hint). I can change games and dabble in another and keep my sanity when any of the others gets to me.
     
  23. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    Apparently

    "The Extended membership plan will sit across four levels, with Bronze being free - but with some restrictions, including cash, bag slots and spell tiers. Silver, which is a $10 one-time purchase, increases those options but still restricts some elements compared to Gold ($14.99 per month recurring subscription) and Platinum ($200 per year recurring subscription). "

    http://everquest2.com/_themes/default/images/extended/membershipMatrix.jpg

    Has all the details of restrictions at the different paying levels.
     
  24. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    In other words it's still a subscription based service with different levels of trial accounts and with no time limits on your trial...
     
  25. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    With the subtle tweak that the new system of 'free' play is on two servers that you won't be able to transfer characters out from to the rest of the EQ2 universe, so you get your own 'ghetto' too....
     
  26. jtw1984

    jtw1984 Seasoned Veteran
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    UO is free to play!

    You all know of what I speak.
     
  27. Tek

    Tek Seasoned Veteran
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    Can download the full game for free
    No monthly fee
    EQ2e is the full EverQuest II world with no level caps, no time restrictions and no missing content.
     
  28. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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  29. Lord Chaos

    Lord Chaos Always Present
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    You mean like UO is now? You can already buy all the stuff you want legally. Its just not Mythic making the profit.

    EVE has capabilities UO could never match at all. So trying to emulate CCP is not the answer for UO.
     
  30. Tek

    Tek Seasoned Veteran
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    The information is quoted form the original link - http://stratics.com/stories/everquest-ii-going-free-play -it does seem to be correct in the matrix that there are no caps on levels, no time restrictions (such as the previous 14 day trial) and that all of the expansions except the latest one are available.
     
  31. Ender

    Ender Crazed Zealot
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    Lame. LotRO and (I'm assuming, since they're the same company) DDO let free accounts play on the established servers.

    I still regret not doing that for LotRO, I'm pretty sure I've paid over $200 in subscription fees by now.
     
  32. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    The 'free' option looks to cap at level 80, not 90, there are effective limits too since you can't use certain non-basic tiers of spells or higher level equipment types, have more than 5 gold total for your character, restricted chat access, no support just access to the 'Knowledge Base' database, fewer race/class options... it's really pretty limited.
     
  33. Tek

    Tek Seasoned Veteran
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    Ah I see you are comparing everything to the platinum level alone while I am comparing them to each other as overall. Anyways of course we would expect any free trial as limited in functionality when compared to fully purchased subscriptions. I look forward to trying Everquest along with Lord of the Rings free trials as I have already with Dungeon & Dragons Online and Warhammer Online. I can only hope that UO might try this someday.
     
  34. Aurelius

    Aurelius Babbling Loonie
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    Yep, sorry if I wasn't clear - I was taking the current 'standard' assuming the player had the latest expansion, and working back from that to the 'free' account.

    I've no problem with 'free' being restricted - it makes no sense at all for the company for it not to be! - and might even have a look, since I've already got a couple of other 'free to play' mmos set up on this PC for when I feel like a change of pace. I'm very tempted to try LOTRO when it goes free as well, although I had to laugh when I read their page about what you do, and don't, get for various types of accounts, the description they have for the customer support level on free accounts is "Self-service online" :)
     
  35. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    I wouldn't call DDO - or EverQuest II for that matter - a 'success' that we should be attempting to emulate.

    If you want to make a free to play option for UO - no housing and access to Trammel - I could live with that. But turning this into a game where you're only successful if you're spending hundreds of dollars to buy the best artifacts and equipment from a store is stupid. There is no challenge. And those people who just bought all that junk are going to move on to another game world.
     
  36. Amber Moon

    Amber Moon Seasoned Veteran
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    Word was DDO was about to close the doors. Turbine took it F2P and the game lives on to much better revenues, according to Turbine.

    You may not care for the game and nobody is asking you to play it. It was Turbines money as stake and I believe they would call it a success.

    Would you like to see increased subs in UO? Then perhaps UO version of F2P would help keep the game going and perhaps even increase the money available for development. But then, there are always those who resist change...
     
  37. Cirno

    Cirno Purple Pony Princess
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    As a result of the move to free-to-play, the number of paid subscribers to DDO doubled, and they saw an increase in revenue above that (I think it was five times greater).
    I think that a move to F2P would be a case of "there goes the neighbourhood" for a lot of the community of UO, but I don't think it would be necessarily a bad thing for its continued existence.
     
  38. Well lets see what would be the impact of P2F and will the other games like WOW if they can turn this also to F2P
     
  39. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
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    Yeah, they went from like less than 200k players to around a million, and increased their revenue by 500%. Yeah, I think thats a kind "failure" UO should be so lucky to have.

    Although the longer they drag their feet, the less impact its gonna have as more and more bigger, newer games for f2p, and mark my words, they will.
     
  40. HD2300

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    If you do a bit of research using Google, DDO had about 22k players based on server surveys. So at $15/month, that was $4 million/yr pre F2P, and now its $20 million revenue per year.
     
  41. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
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    wow that little? I had no idea.
     
  42. Nyses

    Nyses Lore Keeper
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    Really makes you wonder if UO is doing any better. How many people does UO really employ? 4 mill a year covers a fair amount of salaries, with profit left over.
     
  43. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    If F2P meant such a dramatic increase in revenue without consequences we would have switched to the model a long time ago.

    So what is the consequence we're not talking about?
     
  44. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
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    Well if I had to make a guess...the reason UO didn't go F2P (as was planned and ready to be announced like 2 years ago, so says draconi) is because when mythic took over, who ever had the new power didn't like the idea, or was unfamiliar with the F2P set up, which to be fair was not AS tested as a major subscription paradigm back then.

    I suppose there is always an initial hesitation on a big change that COULD cause revenue to drop, but when the upside is so large and clear, I say you gotta take that risk...with a smart plan of course.

    Cuase to me, the ONLY major problem UO has...is lack of playerbase.
     
  45. Babble

    Babble Guest

    Actually UO considered going free to play, but decided against it.

    They would have to rework UO a bit to make it free to play and the consequence would be that they would need to invest in that change.
     
  46. Cirno

    Cirno Purple Pony Princess
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    Only recently is it becoming widely accept that "let people play for free" can exist along with "make more money".
    There's not even a good real life example I can think of to compare it to, which I suppose supports how little sense the concept would make to a counter of beans.
    Trading a guaranteed subscription income in for a speculative income based on the the microtransactions players may make, isn't very confidence inspiring.

    Also, DDO is one of the first F2P MMOs that could be considered to have some A's, as in like a "triple-A title". F2P games carry a stigma, because for the most part, it's hard to justify spending money on developing a title you're going to give away for free.

    So, I think the short answer is "corporate reluctance"
     
  47. HD2300

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    Because say at that time when Mythic took over we had 120k active accounts... that is 120k x 13 x 12 = $18.7 million per year just in subscription fees.

    DDO dropped to say $4 million per year, it is almost shutdown the servers time, and thats when they decided to throw the hail mary pass.
     
  48. i always thought that UO would do well as a free to play MMO, although i can't quite think of that many perks for paying accounts, or worthwhile micro transactions. the only draw i can see is housing and storage.

    would be interesting though in theory. maybe free accounts could be referred to as 'nomad' or 'gypsy' accounts, while the paying accounts could be considered 'citizen' or 'lordship' accounts.

    nomad accounts:
    5 characters per server
    no housing privileges, cannot co-own, cannot friend a private house
    can only rent one vendor total per shard
    bank account maximum of 25 items; cannot issue or store checks in bank account (but can still cash checks permitting space)
    700 skill cap
    225 stat cap, no stat scroll privileges
    cannot join thieves guild
    cannot create official guilds, but can join guilds (no higher than ronin rank)
    certain limits on microtransactions
    certain server limits
    account does not age/no vet rewards

    citizen accounts (<$6 a month):
    6 characters per server
    720 skill cap
    230 stat cap
    housing privileges (up to 2 story custom property)
    limited vet rewards
    no 'nomad' restrictions

    lordship account (current pricing):
    7 characters per server
    housing privileges (no restrictions)
    increased bank account (150 items)
    increased housing storage
    increased stable storage
    full vet rewards accural

    paying players having the option of 'suspending' accounts, or converting to lesser accounts loosing privileges agreed upon.
     
  49. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    F2P screams to me games like Runescape and the ones we see in Stratics advertisements; 'Evony' and 'LordCraft.'

    Ultima Online has jumped the shark one time too many. I have no objections to the game taking a risk; increasing revenue and bringing more subscribers. But it freaks me out. I don't want to see this game turn into cheap trash like Lords of Ultima.

    I keep asking myself; if this is such a successful business model why don't we see more companies adopting it?
     
  50. Nyses

    Nyses Lore Keeper
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    Cell Phones, you can get a cell phone for free (not counting service) but you are made to buy all the apps and ringtones, Not perfect but as close as I could come up with.