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View Full Version : Add a new Premium, subscription-only server (with benefits)



Martell
06-27-2010, 10:31 AM
I am a returning player/subcriber, and I am trying out some of the new character classes. One thing that bothers me a lot, is that on these new characters I virtually have to SKIP half of the at-level content due to most people not having one adventure pack or another. I think it would be advantageous to offer a subscription-only server that caters to like-minded individuals, that don't want to have to either drop party members, buy a silly pass, or skip content entirely (at-level, you can always solo it later, but I prefer to play in groups.)

In addition, this idea of a subscription-only server got me thinking about something that Everquest had (and may still have) back when I still played it - a "Premium" server. You could pay a little more each month to have access to a server that had daily GM-hosted events, better loot drops, and an across-the-board xp bonus. They would also allow you to transfer, free of charge, X number of characters to and from this server every 30 days.

I don't know how much of market there is for something like this, with the general populace, but I certainly wouldn't mind ponying up a little extra cash for a perks-laden premium server, OR just rolling up a character on a vanilla subscription-only server using the VIP access I currently pay for.

Sleepingcap
06-27-2010, 10:37 AM
So if I start DDO - I end up at Free2Play server?
Some time later, I subscribe, get transferred to the VIP server?
Then due to some unforseen circumstances stop paying and my characters will be dropped back to premium?
A bit too much of a hassle + half-full servers.
Cause in theory, we should have not 7 servers but 21 (one Free 2 Play, one Premium and one VIP server for each). That would mean more expenses for Turbine and I don't think they really want to invest additional funds to create a free 2 play server for players who no longer have any reasons to upgrade their account as they don't want to leave their current guild / friends there.

Not trying to sound like a jerk here ^^

Marcus-Hawkeye
06-27-2010, 10:45 AM
Segregation wasn't the answer in the past, and it's not now. While the f2p players can be a tiresome annoyance at times, it has brought an influx of people to the game which was important. Do you run your own groups? or just wait for LFMs to popup? If you don't make your own groups I suggest you do so and ask each person as they join if they have whatever adventure pack your are trying to do. Or better yet, join a guild if you haven't already. I'm in a guild that usually has at least 3 other people willing to run low level junk on a whim.

Martell
06-27-2010, 11:01 AM
So if I start DDO - I end up at Free2Play server?
Some time later, I subscribe, get transferred to the VIP server?
Then due to some unforseen circumstances stop paying and my characters will be dropped back to premium?
A bit too much of a hassle + half-full servers.
Cause in theory, we should have not 7 servers but 21 (one Free 2 Play, one Premium and one VIP server for each). That would mean more expenses for Turbine and I don't think they really want to invest additional funds to create a free 2 play server for players who no longer have any reasons to upgrade their account as they don't want to leave their current guild / friends there.

Not trying to sound like a jerk here ^^


You don't sound like a jerk at all.

I don't think I made myself clear. I am talking about ONE, maybe TWO, additional servers.

1st server: Same game, no perks, just requires a subscription to play on it.
2nd server: Premium, has perks :xp bonus, better loot tables, etc., requires a 'premium' subscription to play on it. (On everquest it was about 10 additional dollars a month more than the normal subscription fee)

With regard to being 'trapped' on server that you end up not wanting to pay for - I envision that you could transfer characters on and off these special servers with the same frequency as billing (i.e. every 30 days)

As far as half-full servers go, <shrug> I don't know. All I can say with certainty is that I WOULD pay for it, and most of the fellas I play with would do so as well. I'd get a big kick out of bonus xp and loot. I allready subscribe and spend TPs to keep the store loot/xp bonuses on all my characters full time - just give me an option to increase those modifiers even more and I will gladly shell out the cash for them.

Martell
06-27-2010, 11:23 AM
Segregation wasn't the answer in the past, and it's not now. While the f2p players can be a tiresome annoyance at times, it has brought an influx of people to the game which was important. Do you run your own groups? or just wait for LFMs to popup? If you don't make your own groups I suggest you do so and ask each person as they join if they have whatever adventure pack your are trying to do. Or better yet, join a guild if you haven't already. I'm in a guild that usually has at least 3 other people willing to run low level junk on a whim.

In answer to your question, I do both - LFM's and Group leader. I am also a member of an active guild. I am not trying to say that this negates your argument, your points are valid - I simply would like a choice. A choice to play on a server that doesn't require me to do any of the aforementioned things (guest pass, drop members, etc.)

I agree that F2P has brought needed new blood to the game, my suggestion does not imperil that, its simply business-as-usual for anyone who chooses to continue to play the game for free, and an OPTION for those who want to subscribe.

Segregation... I am not trying to foment elitism, just offer choices. Frankly, I am in the camp that we want everyone subscribing, and buying turbine points to keep the Turbine development gears turning on this great game, and F2P players are potential P2P players. So... bring on the freeloaders, they can't hurt the game at all.

Marcus-Hawkeye
06-27-2010, 04:09 PM
I see what you are saying but I'm of the mind of having everyone on the same server... I like how Eve-Online implemented it. I can't see how to implement it in this game but I still prefer it wholeheartedly to the seperate shard aspect. Your idea would be a good idea for the most part, but I have a sub account and a f2p account so I'd never be on the sub only server. I am sure there are many other players in the same boat.

Visty
06-27-2010, 04:12 PM
no

qoolboxer
06-28-2010, 06:31 AM
If your idea is a feasible one, the game would not have gone free to play.

Antheal
06-28-2010, 07:00 AM
One thing that bothers me a lot, is that on these new characters I virtually have to SKIP half of the at-level content due to most people not having one adventure pack or another.

Why do you need to miss them completely? Just select the quest from the list when you make your LFM and you'll only get requests from people that have access to that quest.

maha0201
06-28-2010, 07:08 AM
You don't sound like a jerk at all.

I don't think I made myself clear. I am talking about ONE, maybe TWO, additional servers.

1st server: Same game, no perks, just requires a subscription to play on it.
2nd server: Premium, has perks :xp bonus, better loot tables - this is available at DDO store, etc., requires a 'premium' subscription to play on it. (On everquest it was about 10 additional dollars a month more than the normal subscription fee)

And this wouldnt then be F2P MMORPG that is advertasing, if they make this changes...
Btw where do you plan to put Premium users that have packs or all of the packs ?


Why do you need to miss them completely? Just select the quest from the list when you make your LFM and you'll only get requests from people that have access to that quest.this
and use P2P for low lvl quest coase you can get to lvl 4 without eaven know the base mehanics of this game

AyumiAmakusa
06-28-2010, 07:10 AM
Utter BS. I have F2P friends in real life and I for one do NOT want to be separated from them. If you don't like F2P people so much that you want a separate server, next time just put 'VIP Only' in your LFMs. Let's see how that works out for ya. XD

AZgreentea
06-28-2010, 07:21 AM
Before I had purchased all of the content, I made careful note of the LFM's with P2P in the comments. I think most players would, unless they are VERY new to the game. Its a real hassle to get invited to a good PUG, only to not have access to the quest. If I didnt recognize the name of the quest, I would look it up on DDOwiki to see if it was P2P, but thats just me.

Having a sub only server is an ok idea, but it would invite a bit of elitism, and it would damage the current live servers and the communities associated with them.

Dysmetria
06-28-2010, 09:36 AM
I am a returning player/subcriber, and I am trying out some of the new character classes. One thing that bothers me a lot, is that on these new characters I virtually have to SKIP half of the at-level content due to most people not having one adventure pack or another. I think it would be advantageous to offer a subscription-only server that caters to like-minded individuals, that don't want to have to either drop party members, buy a silly pass, or skip content entirely (at-level, you can always solo it later, but I prefer to play in groups.)

In addition, this idea of a subscription-only server got me thinking about something that Everquest had (and may still have) back when I still played it - a "Premium" server. You could pay a little more each month to have access to a server that had daily GM-hosted events, better loot drops, and an across-the-board xp bonus. They would also allow you to transfer, free of charge, X number of characters to and from this server every 30 days.

I don't know how much of market there is for something like this, with the general populace, but I certainly wouldn't mind ponying up a little extra cash for a perks-laden premium server, OR just rolling up a character on a vanilla subscription-only server using the VIP access I currently pay for.What about the many of us that quickly realized we would be paying $15 a month for the ability to open dungeons on hard first after 6 months, because by then our subscription fees could have bought us all the other VIP stuff for the life of the game?

We aren't subscribed, but have all the adventure packs and are quite willing to run them in groups at the appropriate level too. Instead of making the server subscription based, why not just make it so you have to have all the adventure packs to create a character on it?

Antheal
06-28-2010, 05:30 PM
This was posted in another thread, but it needs repeating here:


If you are right though and he's skipping VIP content due to not enough paying players wouldn't he have the exact same problem if all the free players left the game? I don't think you can fix low population problems in certain quests by removing more players from the game.

Ryiah
06-28-2010, 08:27 PM
If your idea is a feasible one, the game would not have gone free to play.
Not to mention content. After going free to play the game started receiving a ton of new content. Granted not everyone likes it but that's going to happen either way. Sure we could go back to subscription only. Only I fear that Turbine would rapidly go out of business or at the very least the content would completely dry up.

HonricArgent
06-28-2010, 09:24 PM
At first thought, I dismissed this idea. It has multiple flaws as presented, definitely. For example, if you can switch from the VIP server back to a regular one, would there be the danger of the implicit imbalances from the "perk" server bleeding into regular ones? Does DDO even have enough VIP players content with isolation to sustain even one server? Even if they were okay with it, how long would they stick with it before tiring of constantly waiting to fill groups?

But there's a fallacy being bandied about here- the idea that DDO went from subscriber-only to FTP-centric. Yes, the switch to FTP is what saved DDO. But the real saving grace was not free play, but the ability to choose. FTP players make up a large part of the DDO community, but they dont actually provide any revenue until they either become VIPs or buy points and go Freemium (thus, buy all the adventure packs). You can favor grind until the cows come home, but sooner or later, if you want the full game, you have to drop some cash on it. The difference is we get to choose how we want to do it. The only subscription model, where you pay a flat rate and get all the game has, is broken. DDO isnt really based on the FTP model, it's based on the a la carte model. What you want to pay for.

What I'm saying is that there's no reason that a VIP-centric server cant be another one of the options DDO offers. Why not? The business model to defend here is flexibility for the full community, and if some people want to go VIP- and maybe pay a little extra- to sequester themselves on a private server, there's no reason DDO cant stand to benefit from it. In the long run it wont detract dramatically from the general server populations, and it will provide extra income. Seems reasonable enough to me.

qoolboxer
06-28-2010, 09:45 PM
F2P players, while not providing direct revenue, supports the game by providing the much needed POPULATION. If you have a sub-only server, then you pretty much going to have a sparsely populated server (that cannot justify the costs of running the server). No, additional US$10/mth by a few subscribers isn't going to pay for the "private" server.

Budnipper
06-28-2010, 09:55 PM
The ppl here who are disagreeing or flamming your idea are just F2P have nots who can't stomach the fact that you might have or get something they can't or won't have.

I would gladly play on a sub only server.

qoolboxer
06-28-2010, 10:01 PM
I could be wrong, but I don't think F2P can post here.

HonricArgent
06-28-2010, 10:05 PM
Let's be clear about what population means for an MMO.

Population IS important. The more people in a game, the more they spread the game by word of mouth and by making the game appear to be more popular. Each FTP player brought to DDO does two things for the game. First, they each have a small chance of liking the game enough to eventually start buying points or going VIP. Second, they each have a chance of attracting addititional players to the game, which in turn continue to attract more of their friends, and so on and so on. For example, I started as a FTP player, but I eventually went VIP and attracted three other players to the game. Two of those three also went VIP, and one of those two attracted another player (who stayed FTP).

Out of all the people brought into the game from any isolated chain of events, the overwhelming odds are that some of them will end up paying for the game, ideally, paying enough to overcome the net bandwidth cost of all of the others playing. See? But let's remove those benefits and see what happens. Let us assume that a given FTP player has already resolved his ability to bring new players to the game. If you take out a player's ability to buy more points and attract new players who will buy more points, what does population give us?

Only one thing- the presented image of a "larger game" which is only a more abstract, indirect way of attracting players to the game. So that begs the question: if some elitist VIPs choose to create and play characters on a separate server, will it hurt DDO's image a large game?

Well, those players wont be attracting new players, true. But if they shun playing with FTPers, they probably weren't putting out a newb-friendly vibe for the game anyway. And there'll technically be less people on the regular servers... but you can simply look around at the reactions and this thread to see that most playersd, even most VIPs, would stay on the general servers. A private server would appeal to a small niche of gamers on DDO who provide the game with money, but dont provide the community with much at all. In short? DDO keeps a few VIPs from switching to Freemium, and at worst the community doesnt play with a few annoying elitists. Everyone wins.

qoolboxer
06-28-2010, 11:08 PM
Well, I guess if Turbine ever gets around to adding a 8th server, they could try to make it VIP-only to see how it goes. If it doesn't work out, just switch it back to the same as the rest. This is the "1st server: Same game, no perks, just requires a subscription to play on it." as Martell proposed. I don't ever think the 2nd type of server with benefits will ever work out - if you want bonus xp and loot, just buy the jewels from the store.

But even such a VIP-only server carries a certain risk to the F2P model - on the F2P servers, the presence of VIPs works to introduce free players to the VIP status, ie VIPs can help to convert free players to premium/VIPs. It is basically viral marketing at work.

Same thing goes for the loot jewels. Having a server where everybody gets +loot bonus isn't going to help promote the use of loot jewels. If you party with a member who uses a loot jewel and he gets better loot, you would be tempted to buy the jewels. But if everyone gets the bonus anyway, the jewels don't get sold.

ssgcmwatson
06-30-2010, 01:46 AM
Having a server where everybody gets +loot bonus isn't going to help promote the use of loot jewels. If you party with a member who uses a loot jewel and he gets better loot, you would be tempted to buy the jewels. But if everyone gets the bonus anyway, the jewels don't get sold.

Unless jewels on that server would give you a +2 bonus, or some other advantage (increased % of named items, etc).

Haven't thought about it enough to decide whether or not I like the idea, but there is still room for Turbine to make $$$ on top of subscription fees at a VIP server.

Martell
07-06-2010, 08:29 PM
Unless jewels on that server would give you a +2 bonus, or some other advantage (increased % of named items, etc).

This is what I had envisioned for the "pay-extra" server. It has built in bonuses that are AUGMENTED EVEN MORE by the jewel of fortune/xp boost items.

As it is, I allready use the boosters constantly - I never enter a quest without bonus xp and loot. Personally, a little extra cash is something I can easily afford. TIME, however, isn't so spendy, so I would like more bang for my buck (i.e. xp/nifty loot per unit time).

With regard to a 'subscription-only' server, with vanilla rulesets - this is just a convenience thing, where you know everyone is on the same page. Whether a person subscribes or just has purchased all the content, it doesn't matter to me - so long as there is no guesswork.

I am not the boogeyman here, I don't hate F2P players. I would just like another option - an option I am willing to pay for.

katana_one
07-06-2010, 08:36 PM
Why do you need to miss them completely? Just select the quest from the list when you make your LFM and you'll only get requests from people that have access to that quest.

This. Completely fill out your LFM, and those who don't have the quest will get a giant "Buy Now" icon beside your LFM. Problem solved.

Spiffyspiffy
07-07-2010, 12:35 AM
One thing that has always bugged me is... in DDO, everything is instanced. Most private, but even the public areas can spawn off multiple instances when population gets high.

So why do we have seperate servers at all?

Martell
07-12-2010, 09:14 AM
This. Completely fill out your LFM, and those who don't have the quest will get a giant "Buy Now" icon beside your LFM. Problem solved.

Well, I think I am being misunderstood here. I understand how to utilize the LFM toolset, and that it will eliminate (mostly) anyone attempting to join a quest that is incapable of doing so. However its not that simple.

For instance:
Your group has formed seamlessly using the LFM tool properly and you go bang out a quest, and have a good time doing it. Naturally, your party thinks they have a good thing going and say:

"Lets do another!".
I reply. "Okay how about the sharn syndicate line."
"Well Bob doesn't have that." Charlie states.
After some consideration, I mention "I haven't done those Phiarlin Carnival quests yet, how about those?".
Obviously, Bob won't have access to that either.

Usually, in the interest of keeping a party together that is doing really well, we will skip the P2P content to go do some freebie thing - again.

Regardless, I understand that 'missing' content is something that is surmountable and is not really the point. It was just the catalyst that got me thinking about this new type of server idea.

I want to solicit input on the idea of a new, benefit-laden, pay-to-play server. I am not requesting help on how to use game features. That is not a problem.

Razcar
07-12-2010, 09:36 AM
This. Completely fill out your LFM, and those who don't have the quest will get a giant "Buy Now" icon beside your LFM. Problem solved.Not really. There's lot of content that P2P players seldom buy, and if you want to pug that, you will be waiting with your LFM for a long while. On a VIP-only server that won't be the same issue, since 100% of the players there will have access to all the content. By picking a less-run quest that is P2P on the normal servers you are catering to a small percentage of the player base, which seems to be getting smaller every day.

I don't think, if realised, this would turn into an "elite-server", since most power-gamers do not care to run these out-of-the-way quests anyway, and if they run them for favour they can rush it alone or in their guilds. But a server like that could make it easier to pug this kind of "narrow" content, if that's what you like.