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  1. #1
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    Question Has DDO slan the giant? WoW considers f2p model

    After failing to tumble Wow with its launch in 2006, has DDO's f2p conversion in 2009 finally fallen the might World of Warcraft? While revenues are sizable, it appears the bloodletting in the MMO market has even hurt the mighty.

    From: http://www.zacks.com/stock/news/1072...tal-up-in-july

    [All MMOs] Free-to-play subscriber base slightly declined to 45.8 million from 46 million in June. Average revenue per user (“ARPU”) was approximately $40 much higher than $27 reported in June.

    Subscription based MMO revenues declined 9.0% on a monthly basis to $76.0 million. Subscriber base declined to 5.8 million from 6.3 million in June. This was much anticipated due to the loss of 600K subscribers for Activision’s World of Warcrafts (WoW) in the recently concluded quarter.

    From: http://www.vg247.com/2013/09/12/worl...months-report/

    In a report by Super Data Research entitled, “World of Warcraft is thinking of microtransactions, and that’s a good thing”, the firm stated that the MMO’s revenue was $93 million in April, a decrease from the $204 million figure recorded seventh months earlier.


    The report muses the possibility of WoW going fully free-to-play and introducing microtransactions beyond pets, cosmetic items and other content. It explains, “What we generally see after a switch to free-to-play is an influx of new players and a spike in revenues, which, if the cards are played right, can be sustained. But to switch entirely to F2P is currently too much of a jolt for WoW, and doesn’t make sense with the current metrics.


    “For example, in order to have sustained the US revenues the game saw in 2011, it would have had to convert 53% of the total free-to-play audience in the US at the time. However, there are now more F2P gamers in the country—and worldwide—so it’s becoming easier to capture this audience. But there’s also more competition.”

    The firm has checked the numbers, and apparently the game’s store data shows that active players are willing to shell out on microtransactions, but to reel back core elements and retro-fit them into a micro-payment model, Blizzard would need to converge several mechanics and ideals into a new format. It could prove both disruptive and may serve to alienate the fan base.
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  2. #2
    Community Member Vellrad's Avatar
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    DDO has nothing to do with it.

    Rift or NWO maybe.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vellrad View Post
    DDO has nothing to do with it.

    Rift or NWO maybe.
    DDO's introduction of the f2p model to MMOs in 2009 certainly did have something to do with it.
    Last edited by Hafeal; 10-27-2013 at 09:47 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hafeal View Post
    DDO's introduction of the f2p model to MMOs in 2009 certainly did have something to do with it.
    While DDO might have been the first to implement it, the idea was floating around the industry. WoW would have been stupid to implement it at the time since f2p was untested and they were raking it in via subs. Now 4 years later, with newer and newer games, dwindling subscriptions have dictated that it could be a natural progression for WoW.

    Vellrad is right, I don't think DDO is even mentioned at Blizzard. DDO is a bird blip on the commercial MMO radar.

  5. #5
    Community Member Chai's Avatar
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    Hardly. DDO did not invent nor introduce the f2p model into the MMO market. Asian MMOs were 5+ years ahead in this already.

    As for toppling WOW - when they have players in the hundreds of thousands rather than over 10 million, we can talk about the toppling of wow.
    Advocating repeated nerfs in the name of "balancing the game" then complaining about how DDO is moving away from D&D, is a direct contradiction in logic - D&D 3.5 (what DDO is based on) is not a balanced game. We can either have a balanced clone MMO with homogenized classes, or we can have a D&D game. We cant have both.

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    WOW alone makes more money than what Turbine is worth.
    DDO is a microscopic bug compared to WOW.

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    Community Member devashta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chai View Post
    As for toppling WOW - when they have players in the hundreds of thousands rather than over 10 million, we can talk about the toppling of wow.
    The fact that even when garnering 93 million in revenues is making WoW think about F2P means that the overhead cost is simply too high to develop and maintain WoW. 54% drop is revenue is alarming for any company, let alone MMO.

    Also, DDO may have started late to Asian MMOs in terms of F2P, but DDO has atleast 3+ years of head start in fine tuning the model. When your 10 million players find out that the game can be played for free, how many of them will actually subscribe? If all of them go F2P, how will WoW survive?

    As DDO found out, cosmetics and pets do not fill the coffers for day-to-day company expenses. Heck, even MM failed. So WoW will have to charge for content (which was free to begin with), start gating as much as possible so people pay the way out. The fall out can be disastrous for WoW if not properly handled.

    Nevertheless as an ardent WoW hater, this is music to my ears! We are on the verge of venturing into Mournlands and expanding to other planes through Hall of Heroes, while WoW stutters without lore and boring play. Game on!!!

  8. #8
    The Hatchery zwiebelring's Avatar
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    F2P once was a sign for fighting the death. Now it is shortterm profit by introducing pay-to-convinience. As long as it works, fine, if not, money has been earned regardless. There is nothing to be proud of. Rationally, even the giant WoW had to fall at some point.

    But whether the reason was DDO seems to be doubtful at best.
    Last edited by zwiebelring; 10-27-2013 at 01:32 PM.
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    Community Member Ryiah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by devashta View Post
    When your 10 million players find out that the game can be played for free, how many of them will actually subscribe? If all of them go F2P, how will WoW survive?
    Does it really matter if WoW survives or not? Blizzard only needs it to stay around for the length of time it takes them to develop and release a new product that can replace it. Whether or not they're up to the task anymore is another question altogether.
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  10. #10
    Scholar Of Adventure & Hero Missing_Minds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zwiebelring View Post
    F2P once was a sign for fighting the death. Now it is shortterm profit by introducing pay-to-convinience. As long as it works, fine, if not, money has been earned regardless. There is nothing to be proud of. Rationally, even the giant WoW had to fall at some point.

    But if the reason was DDO seems to be doubtful at best.
    Let alone DDO was never going to topple WoW. I find anyone who thought that or even rationally considered it to have been very lacking in their thinking.

    DDO shocked the US market with F2P and success from it. however, Mobile apps were already doing that for a little while in the US and they still do so today.
    The combination of MMO and Mobile aps doing roughly the same thing, it was only going to be a matter of time before Blizzard made changes. To think they could stay the same in this market and competition is very dumb.

  11. #11
    Community Member FlaviusMaximus's Avatar
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    Outside of simplistic phone apps that require relatively little work to produce, there is no such thing as free to play. It's a marketing gimmick. If the game is a legitimate MMORPG that people put actual work into designing and continually updating, a player is all but required to put money into it to either start playing it or keep playing it after a certain point. It can be a one time fee in the beginning. It can be fees that become necessary to access content after a character hits a certain level. It can be any number of things, but "free to play" is an extremely misleading term when you are dealing with these types of games.

    Some of you don't pay money anymore, but you had to pay at one point to in order to unlock the content. Some of you haven't paid money yet, but that is likely because you are either somewhat new to the game, are a very casual player, or have devoted an ungodly amount of hours to farming turbine points through favor to unlock content. While the third option is possible, an extremely small part of the population places such a low value on their free time that they are willing to do it this way.

    I guess I just have a problem with the term "free to play," because frankly, this game isn't. I would state this whole thing as; "WoW looks into a new, less obvious way of giving players free trials," or possibly, "WoW tries a slightly different marketing approach to lure in new players."
    Last edited by FlaviusMaximus; 10-27-2013 at 02:42 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drwaz99 View Post
    While DDO might have been the first to implement it, the idea was floating around the industry. WoW would have been stupid to implement it at the time since f2p was untested and they were raking it in via subs. Now 4 years later, with newer and newer games, dwindling subscriptions have dictated that it could be a natural progression for WoW.

    Vellrad is right, I don't think DDO is even mentioned at Blizzard. DDO is a bird blip on the commercial MMO radar.
    The caption was, of course, tongue-in-cheek, of course DDO did not "slay" WoW. However, to make a point to you and Mr. Chai:

    Quote Originally Posted by Chai View Post
    Hardly. DDO did not invent nor introduce the f2p model into the MMO market. Asian MMOs were 5+ years ahead in this already.

    As for toppling WOW - when they have players in the hundreds of thousands rather than over 10 million, we can talk about the toppling of wow.
    DDO was the first trusted American company to take the jump on f2p in an MMO - I never said 'invent.' They clearly zigged rather than do zag into f2p when subs were the model - and DDO was closely watched by Blizzard and everyone else. Of course WoW did not need to jump on the bandwagon right away.

    However, as f2p has become the model of business du jour, and WoW is bleeding more accounts than DDO ever had, there is clearly concern and should be. Stepped up competition, spread across many different kinds of games can mean a slow death by small cuts. Clearly the people at WoW are smart and recognize it. Now, what will they do? Unlike DDO, for example, part of their response is to hire more devs.
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  13. #13
    Community Member Ivan_Milic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drwaz99 View Post
    While DDO might have been the first to implement it, the idea was floating around the industry.
    You really think this?
    The first f2p mmo was released 10 years before DDO.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivan_Milic View Post
    You really think this?
    The first f2p mmo was released 10 years before DDO.
    If I'm wrong, I'm wrong. So what? I've got better things to do than attempt to research which MMO came out as f2p first. Like watching paint dry.

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    Outside of simplistic phone apps that require relatively little work to produce, there is no such thing as free to play. It's a marketing gimmick. If the game is a legitimate MMORPG that people put actual work into designing and continually updating, a player is all but required to put money into it to either start playing it or keep playing it after a certain point.
    It depends if you want to count a game like League of Legends in the MMO category. That game is legitimately free to play.

    F2P isn't really a marketing gimmick though, that under sells it. It's a completely different way to approach game design/economy. It fundamentally changes how content is delivered, created and engaged with. I think DDO does a decent job but could be better. However, that's often what happens when you're one of the firsts - good idea, mediocre execution.

    If WoW or DDO "really" want to encourage F2P players to drop cash they need to try and keep f2p players seeing what they're missing. There's lots of ways to do this but fundamentally it the really impressive content needs to be gated in a way that allows for "sneak peeks" not full on cash walls.

    As a new player who has relatively little time to game, I currently don't see any real reason to buy-in.

  16. #16
    Community Member AtomicMew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hafeal View Post
    The caption was, of course, tongue-in-cheek, of course DDO did not "slay" WoW. However, to make a point to you and Mr. Chai:



    DDO was the first trusted American company to take the jump on f2p in an MMO - I never said 'invent.' They clearly zigged rather than do zag into f2p when subs were the model - and DDO was closely watched by Blizzard and everyone else. Of course WoW did not need to jump on the bandwagon right away.

    However, as f2p has become the model of business du jour, and WoW is bleeding more accounts than DDO ever had, there is clearly concern and should be. Stepped up competition, spread across many different kinds of games can mean a slow death by small cuts. Clearly the people at WoW are smart and recognize it. Now, what will they do? Unlike DDO, for example, part of their response is to hire more devs.
    Do you realize how many players DDO has bled over the past year alone? It's not as if DDO is doing all that great, lately.

  17. #17
    Community Member Ungood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by devashta View Post
    The fact that even when garnering 93 million in revenues is making WoW think about F2P means that the overhead cost is simply too high to develop and maintain WoW. 54% drop is revenue is alarming for any company, let alone MMO.
    No, this just means that the fat cats taking in seven digit salaries want more money, That is ALL it means.

  18. #18
    Community Member Ungood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hafeal View Post
    DDO was the first trusted American company to take the jump on f2p in an MMO - I never said 'invent.' They clearly zigged rather than do zag into f2p when subs were the model - and DDO was closely watched by Blizzard and everyone else. Of course WoW did not need to jump on the bandwagon right away.
    This is not true at all, GW, had an Item Mall and no monthly subs, that was one of it's largest selling points, if anything, GW set the stage to abolish Monthly Subs from MMO's in 2005.

    DDO just made a staggering come-back tour by going F2P, which is why it got attention, and now there are MMO review sites that list top free MMO's, and WoW could cut into that action by being at the very top of the list on pretty much every site, not to mention many people who did not play wow, might try it to see what the "fuss" was about, so the WoW hate could play in Blizzards favor if they make the transition.

  19. #19
    Community Member Ykt's Avatar
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    I was playing f2p MMORPG Dungeon Runners back in 2006-2007, this topic is stupid.

  20. #20
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    Fail to see how WoW making even more money and attracting more players by using a mircrotransaction model is a victory for DDO over anything. In reality this is a good example as I see it of a company posessing the good business sense to tap into a section of the market they are not currently engaged with. Ultimately it seems likely that it will do damage to DDO as DDO is a player in that segment and some of those will be drawn over to WoW. Could be argued that is is perhaps one of the worst things possible for DDO (exageration and all that befitting forums, but you know what I mean).

    Am not against WoW, nor particularly for it either. Kinda firmly indifferent.

    Edited cuz I cannt spellz too gooders tday.
    Last edited by monsoon22; 10-27-2013 at 06:03 PM.

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