The Daily Grind: Have you ever had free-to-play buyer’s remorse in an MMO?

A friend of mine who doesn’t really play MMOs asked me recently about buyer’s remorse for free-to-play games. It’s a good question, I think; with subscription games, failing to make use of something is mostly the equivalent of not going to the gym despite having a membership. Awkward and unpleasant, but not really outright remorse. But dropping $10 on something and later wishing you hadn’t is another story altogether.

I do, in fact, have my own story of that; I bought some cartel coins on Star Wars: The Old Republic and was using them to unlock parts of a stronghold, but one part deducted several coins repeatedly without actually unlocking until I relogged. (The customer service staff, I’m sorry to say, was entirely unhelpful in resolving the issue.) It’s not a major problem, and it certainly wasn’t enough for me to make an undying issue out of it, but I did wish in hindsight that I hadn’t bothered.

So what about you, dear readers? Have you ever had free-to-play buyer’s remorse in an MMO? If so, what did you buy and why do you wish you hadn’t? And even if you don’t have such a story, do you think it’s probably more common than we hear?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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78 Comments on "The Daily Grind: Have you ever had free-to-play buyer’s remorse in an MMO?"

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ting

My friends often play a lot of F2P cash grab games and just do charge backs when the devs put in P2W crap. They put all digital purchases on a credit card for charge back reasons and don’t regret anything when the game goes south. These companies are slimey anyways. They want to brickwall their customers with crappy customer service, have fun trying to get your money back from the CC company who will stone wall you harder.

Benjamin Northrup
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Benjamin Northrup

I’ve only ever had buyers remorse on month subs of P2P games. After so many amazing F2P and B2P experiences, I look back with regret that I ever paid rent to access my characters.

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Tobasco da Gama

Buyer’s remorse on a F2P game? Oddly enough, no. But then I have a very particular philosophy when it comes to spending money on F2P goodies.

Basically, I buy stuff in an F2P game (microtransactions in general, actually) as a kind of monetary “thank you” to the devs. If I’m not enjoying the game enough to feel that they deserve the thank you, I generally just stop playing altogether rather than plunking down money and then feeling bad about it later.

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Space Captain Zor

What I regret is buying a game (CE, no less) and paying a subscription to it on the idea that my subscription (and CE) would be used to generate updates and content (CE vendor..) and continued development for me only to see the game go free-to-play and then a ton of development thereafter seemingly aimed at the free-to-play customer instead of the existing subscribers. SWTOR would be my prime example. Yes, they continue to gate story content behind the sub, however, a lot of their efforts have clearly been spent on the Cartel Market/lock boxes as well as ways to break the game up into undigestible bits to entice subscriptions to make it palatable again.. Did they really need to invest so heavily in making the game so terrible to play without a sub? As someone who was subscribing while they did that, I truly feel my subscription dollars were being inappropriately allocated there.

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Melissa McDonald

The closest thing for me would be Entropia. I was intrigued by another game-to-real currency game after really enjoying Second Life, and wondered what it would be like.

Worst game ever. Oy vey.

capt_north
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capt_north

Star Trek Online: I bought a number of TOS items (auntie rolls old school), and all of them have been given away as free gifts, included in the Agents of Yesterday expansion, or both. Look, if you’re going to give away stuff that other people have paid for, flag any account that already has it and issue a full refund.

ceder
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ceder

No but I have had remorse after buying a game that went free to play later.

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Alex Malone

Nope: I refuse to buy things through F2P shops as I don’t want to encourage bad business practices and I feel F2P has been a very negative force within the MMO genre. It’s subscription or nothing for me.

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Neurotic

I don’t, that I can remember. I prefer F2P to subs for the time reason — because of work, I never really know how much free time I’ll have each month, so paying 10-12 Euros for 30 days of access that I then only have a few hours or days of use from, is much more galling to me. In fact, the last buyer’s remorse I felt was a 60-day WoW sub that I ended up getting about 1 week of playtime out of. :D

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Robert Mann

Nope. The only money I have spent on free to play games went to things that I carefully considered, thought were a good purchase, and supported honest dev work. Like expansion or DLC content that was reasonably priced, and a few odd cosmetics before the days of ‘limited pet/mount sale, buy now!’ and ‘Hey, look at this shiny new cosmetic. No patches for three months, but you can get this cool thing here that we want $20 for!’

I’m far more willing to spend with a developer and/or publisher who is up front with me, respects their customers enough to not do the gimmicky crud, and all that jazz.