Albion Online AMA on pay-to-win, free trials, and global servers

Bela Lugosi's dead.

Sandbox Interactive ran an AMA for its in-development indie MMO Albion Online on Reddit last night, covering everything from the game’s business model to how players in far-flung locations fare on its global server. Here are the highlights!

  • There are no plans for a freebie weekend or trial as a result of fairness to founders and botting issues — as well as performance issues. “The game is extremely well populated as it is, and we’d be worried that free trial could slow down the servers.”
  • Likewise, SI will be sticking to its original plan to reward founders with early access, though players have expressed concern over the potential for an ArcheAge-like land-grab.
  • In response to players bringing up pay-to-win and the game’s $30 buy-in, SI explained the game’s business model is based on EVE Online’s and that while players can essentially gain an advantage by buying and then exchanging real-money currency for in-game currency, it won’t afford players a guaranteed win. As for the currency exchange, it should be possible to play the market.

  • The devs say they have a self-balancing system to deal with equipment inflation, part of which revolves around gear being looted and destroyed when you die.
  • It is possible to be a dedicated farmer/cook in the game, though crop timers are set to daily.
  • Solo “lone wolf” PvP is possible in the game, “but it is easily one of the activities with the highest skill cap.”
  • Fishing is eventually coming to the game. Other sea-faring content is still a maybe.
  • Like EVE, Albion will stick to one single global server. “We chose our servers’ location in such a way that America, Europe and Russia get a good ping. The game’s combat is not as fast paced as League of Legends or Dota, so you can easily play it well with pings as high as 150. 95% of our players are below that. We even have a lot of Australians play Albion Online, even though their pings are usually the highest.”
  • Following the initial rush, the studio expects players to engage in the economy, guild warfare, PvE content, character development (“It is pretty much impossible to max out”) and multiple PvP types.
  • Player character models are not due for a revamp ahead of launch.

More on Reddit, just in time for the Galahad patch to drop today.

Source: AMA

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Did they bring in fishing at last?

roo woods
roo woods

Sounds like it will could be a gankfest and the Archage style land grab is not something I would want to experience again . Mind you never say never so I will wait and see what people have to say about it a few months after its released but as its stands I don’t think it will be for me .

I like open world pvp but only when there are factions .

Loyal Patron
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Kickstarter Donor

Hubs and I bought into this today. A few of our guildies are playing it too. Should be fun =)

Robert Mann

Pay to Advantage is what Pay to Win is… at least to me. Which ensures that I won’t try the game, although I had some interest (mild) before that.

Nope, this one is now dead to me.


Thanks for the synopsis. As someone who backed early when they were advertising it as the second coming of UO, I have been nothing but dissapointed in the game. I am going to check out the new map and see if it brings any sort of interest. I have a feeling itll just be lipstick on a pig.

Indigo Salma

Too much to loose in this game , gear on death even house furniture …
Back to ESO …


Gear is pretty fundamentally different in a sandbox MMO like Albion. In a themepark like ESO, gear is your goal. In a sandbox, gear is just a tool – and you have to think of it more like a consumable. Your goal isn’t just to get gear so you can do harder content that will then reward better gear – it’s to make your mark on the world, and having the absolute best gear all of the time isn’t required to do that.

Plus in a game with permanent item decay and item loss on death, gear is muuuuuch easier to come by. You’re typically just going to be headed back to your guild vault to pick up a set your crafters made, not battling a boss to get the 1.5% drop chance item that’s BiS for you.

As the saying goes in EVE – never fly anything you can’t afford to lose.

Robert Mann

Yeah, most games in the open world sandbox setup treat gear very differently, and people with only themepark backgrounds are far more scared than they should be.

In most of these games, crafters will not only have the materials to make more, but a stockpile of weapons and armor ready to go.

Now, the base/land war aspects might indeed sting a little more (but usually once you have built a base building a new one is far easier.)

Kickstarter Donor

I get the gear issue. But, I don’t get why everything can be looted. For example, take the explorer gear from the founder’s pack. It can be looted and destroyed. If I was ganked and lost my sword that a crafter made, I’d just go get another like you said – its not a big deal. If I died and lost some fluff like a cash shop cape, I’d be pretty upset. That’s literally giving money away to roaming PVPers.

Fenryr Grey

in those games only is becoming a crafter really worth your time. It’s still mind boggling to me that people consider FF14 as a good(even best) game for crafters. I miss the good old Darkfall times… massproduction for your guild….

billy tim

So close to buying this game…just can’t get passed the fact that you could lose a guild war because of real life influence. If the game is going to be so gear based, and tiers for gear so important, then letting people buy unlimited gear is ridiculous.

I would rather buy the game and have a monthly subscription, and put everyone on the same level, than to let real world money purchase anything in game directly. It just changes the dynamics of the whole economy, and ties it to ours in real life. Let a game be a game, and people work for things just as hard as the next person.

Only way I will play this is with a b2p + subscription…. Or a cash shop with vanity items only. Sick of mixing real world money and game money together.