The Daily Grind: Do veteran rewards make you more likely to subscribe to an MMO?

    
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GIVE ME MORE SHIPS

I believe I’ve gone on the record before as saying I rather like veteran rewards. It’s nice to know that subscribing to Final Fantasy XIV for long enough (and with the newest campaigns, during the right periods of time) results in cool stuff coming my way. But I was thinking about it the other day, and the reality is that I would still be subscribed without any sort of veteran rewards. The veteran rewards are, ultimately, nothing more than fluff.

That got me thinking about other games with similar setups, like City of Heroes and its elaborate reward matrix with its free-to-play design or the various subscription rewards for Star Trek Online. I may like the rewards, but I can’t say that any of the rewards actually influence my subscription in a meaningful fashion. Either I want to subscribe or I don’t; the extra doodads don’t motivate me in any way. They’re just a nice benefit to doing something I was already planning to do.

Maybe that’s the reason why games like World of Warcraft still have no subscriber rewards, simply because the effort in putting them together won’t actually produce more subscribers. What do you think? Do veteran rewards make you more likely to subscribe to an MMO?

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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Daniel Reasor

I did pick up the lifetime sub on Star Trek Online when the Legacy of Romulus expansion went live, but that was because I thought the game was worth supporting and it would be cheaper in the long run than a monthly subscription, not because the bribes were that good.

I don’t regret the purchase. I’ve more than made back the money from the monthly Zen stipend for subscribers since then, and the developers have since added value to the purchase by adding Tier 6 veteran ships. Every toon that I’ve leveled since then has used those ships at least long enough to learn the trait from them.

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Matt Redding

There are definitely some veteran-type perks that make games a lot more fun to play especially if you have alts. Such as veteran reward mounts that apply to all characters. But, while I generally like the things you get from veteran rewards I often get real irritated that items I want can be locked out for an extremely long time. For instance when City of Heroes started their program one of the earliest rewards were trenchcoats and justifiably a lot of new players were PISSED that they had to wait 3 months to get something they considered a basic costume component. And I think they were right! Now that I’m playing Final Fantasy XIV I understand that SOME DAY I’ll get a Squall costume as a reward.

When Rift converted their old subscription time-based loyalty system to a cash shop point system I thought it was a bit better, at least if you really wanted X thingie you could throw $50 or whatever at it and get the progress.

I think what would make a really great system though is if the veteran time unlocked choices you could make. Like “every three months subscribed, choose 1 item from the year 1 perks” and there would be like 6 things to choose; then in year two you could choose from another 6 things plus the 2 from year 1 you didn’t get and so on.

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Tobasco da Gama

I subscribe if I think I’m going to spend enough time playing the game to take advantage of whatever content the subscription fee gets me access to.

Veteran rewards are not a motivation for me at all. “Free” currency is not a motivation at all. 90% of what most subscriptions offer is not a motivation at all. The only thing I really care about is unlocking content.

(If my Grandmaster status from TSW didn’t carry over to SWL, for example, I wouldn’t be buying Patron even though the progression and convenience rewards are pretty good. Likewise, if LOTRO goes back to a yearly expansion model, I’ll drop my sub immediately. I’m not paying for a subscription that supposedly unlocks all the content in the game only to then pay an extra $40 a year on top of that.)

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Anstalt

Nope,

If the veteran rewards are worth having, then it means newbies can never catch up and that goes against the principles of making an MMO. If the rewards are just fluff then I couldn’t care less.

Loyheta
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Loyheta

If the game is fun, yes. Games like FFXIV I will stay subbed for the rewards even if I don’t plan on playing often.

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Nick Martin

No, because they are never consistent enough with them. EQ2 had them for a long time, but they really fell off after DB games and never pushed things that were overly useful by the end. Your image above, Star Trek Online, is even worse… the counter has been going on the game for a long time, but there hasn’t been a new reward pushed since we got the playable Talaxians no one asked for with Delta Rising.

What is needed to make Vet rewards worthwhile is continually working to reward people who are in the game and playing… not just a set limit you get to and then nothing but the expectation to put in more time.

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Somewhat Eclectic

I mean I have to like the game and be planning on returning to it in a reasonable time frame but other than that it’s kept me around in a game or two (most notably City of Heroes) during a lull in playtime.

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Little Bugbear

Nah, veteran rewards never really entice me.

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Fervor Bliss

Would not stay in a bad game to get the reward, so I will say no.

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Witches

Not really, but i do enjoy them and wish all games had some form of it.

In some games this is actually just a way to clutter up your inventory, and force you to either buy inventory space, or if the game isn’t a sub game, there’s something that isn’t called a subscription but involves a monthly payment, that gives you extra inventory space.