The Daily Grind: Have you tried more MMOs now that almost everything is free-to-play?

    
38

It feels like a long time ago now (because it was about a decade) but I still vividly remember when Dungeons & Dragons Online went free-to-play and then massively upped its revenue, and the overall tone of the discussion around it immediately seized on the idea that this was a game-changer for MMOs. The subscription fee on these games is what keeps people away, according to conventional wisdom at the time. And free-to-play has certainly helped some titles… but it hasn’t been enough to keep other titles afloat, or to keep some titles from avoiding an extended stay on life support (poor WildStar).

At this point, of course, the majority of titles out on the market are free-to-play, with some outliers like Final Fantasy XIV and Black Desert Online. Even the long-stalwart EVE Online finally joined the free-to-play ranks eventually. And yet I wonder how many of us have actually taken hold of the idea that we no longer have subscription fees and thus aren’t limited to the same games at all times. So what about you, dear readers? Have you tried out more MMOs in the free-to-play era than you did when games usually required a box price and a subscription? Or have you remained fairly consistent?

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!

38
LEAVE A COMMENT

Please Login to comment
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:
Cadaver
Reader
Loyal Patron
Cadaver

Not really, I’ve only tried a couple of F2P games – SWL and Neverwinter. I enjoyed them both but only briefly. I’ve played other titles that are F2P now but weren’t at the time.

Vaeris
Reader
Vaeris

Nope. I just don’t like the nickle and dime aspect of F2P titles with their shops and lock boxes. A-la-carte is fine for dining, but not so much for my MMO gaming. I much prefer a flat monthly rate with access to all the things as opposed to having to pick and purchase which things might be valuable (and hoping I guessed right) or buying gamble chances.

Spending more time figuring out how and how much money to spend seems 180 degrees from 1997 (Ultima Online) when it was figuring out how you wanted to spend time getting lost in the game world.

harbinger_kyleran
Reader
harbinger_kyleran

The best thing about F2P MMOs is it makes it very easy to identity shallow and or low quality games which won’t suit my tastes.

As noted, almost every new MMO in the past 10 years has been F2P or quickly moved there after milking their launch audiance. (Bless is the most recent to do so)

Guess how many of those I enjoy? Zero. ArcheAge came close but screwed the pooch on monetization. (I bought in at US “alpha”)

Did sub to EVE for ten years, ranging from two to six active accounts.

Reader
Isarii

No actually. Most F2P MMOs are so full of nonsense that I’m usually turned off to them well before I get around to downloading the installer. The vast, great majority of MMOs I’ve played have included a box price, and generally a subscription as well.

I think part of the problem is that most F2P MMOs manage to feel ‘samey’ to me as well. I’m not sure why, but there aren’t many out there that feel like they’re bringing anything new to the table in terms of mechanics or setting, outside of novel and exciting ways to extract money from their players.

Reader
Chance Shaka

YES! I’m always looking for games that interest me and usually ignore games with hefty box prices unless I get a chance to try them out. I’m pretty deep into into ESO and Champions right now but I love games with deep customization like Warframe, Rift, ArcheAge

Bel
Reader
Bel

Oh yeah! I’ve tried loads of MMOs since the market shifted to free to play. I was already actively looking for a new MMO home, buying boxes and subbing up to various games. I wasn’t having any success, so each attempt became one more pointless waste of money. Had free to play not caught on when it did, I probably would have just moved on and written the MMO genre off. Now, I have a couple of subs and a handful of freemium, buy to play, and free to play MMOs on rotation.

Reader
starbuck1771

Lord yes I have played many F2p games. Heck I actually tested DDO during alpha And beta then again for beta of it’s F2P conversion.

Reader
Toy Clown

It’s never been a deciding factor. If something looked intriguing to play, I would try it out. I feel like MMO gameplay is so cheap compared to other types of entertainment, so paying 10-20$ to try out a game isn’t really lost value to me – it’s just in line with doing anything I try.

I think what factors in swaying me away from an MMO product now is that it’s free. The population tends to be too transient for my tastes, and with that anti-social behavior is at it’s worst in free titles.

Reader
Patreon Donor
Kickstarter Donor
Loyal Patron
Stormwaltz

The only MMG I tried because it was free is Tera. I only played about a week. Liked the combat, disliked most everything else.

Technically I tried Wildstar after it went F2P, but I was using a game key I got from an earlier Humble Bundle. I didn’t last long there, either – too much sensory overload for my brain.

There are a few Korean titles I’ve downloaded, but when I caught them installing spyware on my PC, I immediately aborted and deleted.

Reader
Hikari Kenzaki

Yes. Is the easy answer.

I don’t play ESO because the price for entry is too high when there are half a dozen other good fantasy MMOs that are F2P or the B2P cost is minimal (BDO is $5-10 to start).

No. This isn’t an invitation for everyone to tell me how good ESO is. I’ve played it. I’ve researched it. I can only handle so many fantasy MMOs at once and nothing sets it apart from all the ones I can jump in and out of anytime for free.

I typically spend $10-50 on a F2P game within the first few days of playing it if I like it, so they still get the money, but I don’t have to worry about wasting money on games I don’t like or asking for a refund.

And overall, I am happier with the experience. There are so many times where when we’re discussing what game to play on any given night we say, “well, it’s not like we have a shortage of things to play.” And that’s the big pay off. This isn’t the days of CoH or even TSW where I would stand around with 5-20 other players lamenting the fact that it has been months/years since the last content drop. I can just play games and have fun without having to worry about if I’m wasting my money/time.