The Daily Grind: Should gamers be entitled to jump MMO queues if they sub?

    
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The Daily Grind: Should gamers be entitled to jump MMO queues if they sub?

The launch of Elder Scrolls Online’s Greymoor this week was a bit of a bungle, though not one we’ve never seen before. Launching MMOs and major expansions is usually rough, and when you have the biggest MMO update launch in the middle of a pandemic where your playerbase is stuck at home ready to play? Well, that was just a recipe for disaster.

And though ZeniMax had it mostly cleaned up within a day, that didn’t stop some gamers from flipping tables. One post rightly ridiculed on Reddit demanded a lawsuit against ZeniMax for the serious crime of… putting in queues to keep the servers stable and then not prioritizing sub players ahead of everyone else in said queues.

“As a SUPPORTER and a PLUS member I EXPECT to be at the front of that DAMN queue over all the other PLEBES in this damn game,” the forumgoer wrote.

As breathtakingly awful as that comment was, it’s not a new idea: A lot of folks believe that their $15 should privilege them in MMO queues and to hell with everyone else who got in line first. And it’s not remotely restricted to MMOs: You can’t even go to Disney or the airport without bumping into these kinds of velvet ropes.

What do you think: Should gamers be entitled to shorter MMO queues if they sub? Does the fact that in ESO’s case it’s possible for a non-subber to have paid more into the game (buying boxes and DLC instead of subbing) change your opinion?

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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Bruno Brito

Guys, i feel like this has to be said:

ESO IS BOUGHT. EVERYONE supports the game one way or another. This is NOT a F2P title. We all had to fork Zenimax some dough.

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Dobablo

Rather than offer priority queuing I prefer rationing access and head-starts.
If servers are full then it makes sense to restrict access to non-paying customers, but it feels unfair to arbitrarily ban a section of the community, so I’d just cap the number of activities they can run each day/week.

I hate the idea of paid headstarts but they are very effective at limiting overcrowding and flattening the demand curve.

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zuldar

Yes, but I’d change subscriber to “anyone who’s made any purchase”. That being said, if queues are a common occurrence other than launch day and maybe big updates than that’s an issue that needs to be fixed.

kjempff
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kjempff

I am for all monetization that is outside the game world (implied that results in less intrusive/ingame monetization), so sure pay premium get better service. Pay for gm presence, support, events, early access to content, etc..all for it.
However, queues seem to be bad business.. why prevent your customers to come and buy your product(s) ? I know it is a temp solution to a problem, but still….

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Zero_1_Zerum

I’m pretty sure that while some MMOs are called “theme parks”, queues aren’t something that’s wanted at all in the games. So, if there’s a long line, there’s something wrong.

And no, people (and I use that term loosely) like that aren’t “entilted” to skip the line. I don’t care if they paid more, they shouldn’t get more privilege just because they have money to burn.

Hashtag eat the rich, they’re fat and they probably taste good with BBQ sauce. But, that’s cannibalism, my dear children, which is in fact frowned upon in most societies.

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Pandalulz

For those on here saying that not ESO, it’s B2P. To keep with the Fastpass metaphor.

Everybody at Disneyworld paid for a ticket to enter the park. But only some of those people paid extra to skip the lines. It already exists out in real-world theme parks, nothing is stopping it from coming to digital ones. Except that the goal, even from developers, seems to be to get rid of queues and not monetize them. When they happen, something is already broken, pray they do not break it more.

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Adam Russell

If the non-subbers are actually paying for stuff then fine. But if they are just free riding it then they should wait.

That being said, dont excuse queues. If theres a queue for any non-trivial amount of time then you are cheating your customers.

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EmberStar

If the game is up front about it that this is one of the perks that you’re paying for with a sub, then yes. They should follow through on that. If it’s a game where subs are advertised as “totally optional, everyone is equal but subs get an infinite crafting bag,” then no. It’s not a perk you’re paying for and suddenly giving some players priority access is changing the deal. Doubly so if the game doesn’t normally need server queues (as is the case here with ESO?)

The queues are a result of an abnormal situation, subs don’t normally include priority access. And in this case, it’s possible the server code isn’t even set up to handle prioritizing some players. I’d rather the coders were focused on doing what is needed to get rid of the queues, not adding special perks for a situation that isn’t supposed to exist in the first place.

Specus
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Specus

I’m perfectly fine with having one of the benefits of subbing to be given priority in the queue. Really, how is this any different from the many other benefits that are commonly provided with a sub?

What I’m not perfectly fine with is the arrogant, elitist attitude represented by the reddit quote above.

quark1020
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quark1020

Same here. Let the subbers go in first.

Just not that guy; He’s a jerk.

Vaeris
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Vaeris

Does the fact that in ESO’s case it’s possible for a non-subber to have paid more into the game (buying boxes and DLC instead of subbing) change your opinion?

I don’t understand this because I’m not up 100% on ESO’s model currently. If the subber is getting all the content that is in the boxes and DLC then why wouldn’t they just pay the sub if it’s less? If you then say “well over a period of time the sub is more” then the point above listed in quotes is moot because the subber is paying more in the end.