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OutlandishMatt
06-18-2013, 10:17 PM
I apologize if there was already a thread about this. Haven't seen it in a couple of days so thought I would post it.

With the talk about VIP abuse it's sparked me to think of what you would like to see in a VIP program. Would you like to see different tiers for different themes, somewhat like the 4 $250 tiers? What about a "cafeteria" style VIP program? You get to pick 2-3 benefits out of a list of bonuses so you can create your own. Now personally, I'd think it would be in their best interest to do the different theme tiers.

Pro Player VIP
1 booster a week
10% off the purchase of boosters

Dungeon Crawler VIP
1 special PvE booster a week
5% better chance at a Primal Pack

Raid Leader VIP
???
10% chance of extra raid loot

Guild Master VIP
???
10% more gold looted to guild

These are terrible examples, yes, but it's just a general opening to what others can suggest and an example to get the conversations going. For sake of saving arguments, let's say everything is bound to the account and can't be traded.

Chiany
06-18-2013, 10:27 PM
If there are gonna be other vip supscriptions, they shouldn't be anything like the KS rewards imho.

Zomnivore
06-18-2013, 10:29 PM
I have to agree, vip shouldn't have half baked kickstarter rewards.

That would be pretty boring for kickstarters, and would be fairly un fair seeing as they said those things were one time deals to ever have.

It'd be better if they came up with a new reward mechanic like something to do with crafting or something to do with unique vip tournaments to make those people feel like they're getting something kickstarters can't enjoy for free, already.

funktion
06-18-2013, 11:07 PM
While other VIP options could be interesting, the ones you mentioned all become paywalls... so no thanks to those ones. But there is definitely room for a few more interesting options.

Fireblast
06-18-2013, 11:45 PM
The VIP program has to be desired, but not required.

The way it is now is fine

~

Unhurtable
06-19-2013, 02:29 AM
While other VIP options could be interesting, the ones you mentioned all become paywalls... so no thanks to those ones. But there is definitely room for a few more interesting options.

Wait, how did these make the game have paywalls again? Neither of them change the core gameplay of the game. A game can't go from "no paywalls" to "paywalls" without a change in the actual game.


The VIP program has to be desired, but not required.

The way it is now is fine

~

Neither of the mentioned suggestions above would be "required" to play the game. Although I can slightly agree that they should give things that are not gimmicks of the KS rewards, the suggestions fit the "desired, not required" condition.

jai151
06-19-2013, 05:11 AM
You have to remember that Cory has already made a few promises to the community, and a good deal of the faith the community has would be destroyed by going back on them.

The big one that applies here is that nothing in game would be for sale for real world currency except packs, starters, and tournament fees. To add any bonuses to the VIP program would be doing precisely what was promised would never be done.

Fireblast
06-19-2013, 05:58 AM
You have to remember that Cory has already made a few promises to the community, and a good deal of the faith the community has would be destroyed by going back on them.

The big one that applies here is that nothing in game would be for sale for real world currency except packs, starters, and tournament fees. To add any bonuses to the VIP program would be doing precisely what was promised would never be done.

That's pretty much what I meant by required.
If VIP have an edge other than discount on boosters it'll feel "required" to hardcore players.

~

nandus
06-19-2013, 06:46 AM
I think we must remember that PVP is PTW, it's only PVE which is F2P. So any VIP benefits that are paid don't go against anything Cory said, in fact his intention seems to be to make everything in his power to make PVP as accessible as possible to players and anything that would bring the costs of playing down qualifies IMO; such as the ProPlayer Vip the OP proposes. The VIP program must evolve into something more, the KS rewards are off the charts and if something is not done to provide additional value for the regular gamer; sooner or later they are going to resent CZE for having so many people with special privileges. At least I know I would and I am a Kickstarter backer. $4 a month for the initial benefits is certainly great, however it's also clearly not enough in the long run.

Fireblast
06-19-2013, 06:48 AM
VIP has to bring value, but not power.

Sadly KS rewards bring both value and power, but there's no way they can go back in time and only give us value!

~

Genocidal
06-19-2013, 06:52 AM
The VIP program, while not explicitly stated, is a gateway to make people comfortable spending money on Hex so they will be more likely to spend more in the future. Considering past promises, the only way to do that is with packs.

jai151
06-19-2013, 06:53 AM
Nandus, PVP is pay to play, not pay to win. Two very distinct concepts.

And yes, paid benefits go directly against Cory's statement that they will be selling, "boosters, starters, and tournament fees, that's it." I pledged this game as highly as I did because of that statement, because it's a pledge to not fall into the pay to win trap that destroys so many games. To go back on it now would be breaking trust.

nandus
06-19-2013, 08:16 AM
VIP has to bring value, but not power.

Sadly KS rewards bring both value and power, but there's no way they can go back in time and only give us value!

~

Unless Cory goes all out on that $2.5 million we raised, buys the Delorean from Doc Brown, goes back in time and does give us only value in the KS; thus reducing pledges and creating a paradox since he now doesn't have enough money to buy the Delorean ... and then the universe implodes... All thanks to hex! ;)

Sorry for the deranged paragraph before, one I started going I couldn't stop. Anyways BTT I think what they can do is offer more value to ALL players, so the people who couldn't/didn't get the KS rewards, do not feel left out. The VIP program is a start, but IMO is not enough.


Nandus, PVP is pay to play, not pay to win. Two very distinct concepts.

And yes, paid benefits go directly against Cory's statement that they will be selling, "boosters, starters, and tournament fees, that's it." I pledged this game as highly as I did because of that statement, because it's a pledge to not fall into the pay to win trap that destroys so many games. To go back on it now would be breaking trust.

I am sorry, you are right, I should have typed PTP instead of PTW. Some people argue there is no difference between those concepts, but I disagree. In any case what the OP is arguing and I kind of support, is not that CZE should sell other stuff besides that(which I am pretty sure they will, since that doesn't include draft packs, sealed deck tournament packs and tons of stuff they will come up with); it's that they need to make those things more accessible for players.

First let me be clear that I am not saying they lied to us, only that the store will combine boosters, packs and other sealed stuff into products for sure. I'm certain Cory was referring to the basis of everything, which is basically sealed sets of cards. It's obviously that they will use other TCGs as a model in that regard, as much as they have done for the gameplay, so if you go into MTGO you'll see they sell more than just packs. Anyone who thinks otherwise it's a little naive IMO.

Finally the key is not really value or power, nor is more stuff to buy, the key is accessibility. How can we make the game as popular as possible, so it has this HUGE playerbase that maintains the game and throws money at us. This is what CZE will constantly ask itself. In any online game with a strong community, something any MMO should strive for and one of the core concepts Cory always talks about, it's better to have 1000 players paying $1 a month than having 100 players paying $10 a month. I am not saying the game should cost this or that, it's only an example to illustrate that boosting a playerbase with lower entry barriers is usually very healthy for a community based game such as this. Obviously there is a balance point, past which making the game more accesible doesn't make it that much better; it's for that balance point CZE must aim and I think thanks to stuff like the VIP program they will achieve that eventually.

edit: I just wanted to clarify that everything I have posted is focused on the PVP side of things. I think any VIP PVE benefits are much harder to design, due to the F2P nature of the gameplay. Nevertheless I am certain it can be done somehow.

jai151
06-19-2013, 08:21 AM
Combinations of card packs wouldn't be going back on that word. Selling a subscription giving an in-game bonus would.

The VIP program is fine. Adding things like "10% more gold drops" or "Free legendary equipment every week" is not.

Killer.Mutant
06-19-2013, 08:32 AM
+1

If there are to be any additional tiers to the VIP system it should be in the form of added value (more drafts) from making larger commitments in terms of length of contract and/or monthly fee not any in game bonuses or buffs.

But even there, CZE need to be really careful not to scare off n00bs who might see a $50/month VIP level and assume they can't be competitive unless they're willing to spend a ton of money on the game.

Fireblast
06-19-2013, 09:21 AM
They should leave the VIP program as it is.

~

Ju66ernaut
06-19-2013, 09:37 AM
I love your creativity, and seeing all of these ideas form. But really, I think CZ has a good system and that they should launch what they have and change it as they see fit in the future. WoW didn't launch with low level mounts, realm transfers, faction changes, etc. They saw a need and addressed it. Too many options all at once will only confuse players. I hate to say it, but we (myself included) as a community need to spend a little less time obsessing about this game. Things are escalating a little too quickly :-p.

Great intentions though.

Unhurtable
06-19-2013, 12:08 PM
Nandus, PVP is pay to play, not pay to win. Two very distinct concepts.

And yes, paid benefits go directly against Cory's statement that they will be selling, "boosters, starters, and tournament fees, that's it." I pledged this game as highly as I did because of that statement, because it's a pledge to not fall into the pay to win trap that destroys so many games. To go back on it now would be breaking trust.

Its a greyscale, but PvP is "pay to play" isnt the purest sense. It does contain P2W elements (since you have a higher chance of having great cards if you have invested more into the game, which in turn will increase your chances of winning). Now, the great thing about the current system is that it has diminishing returns on the value of investing further into it into a single set. But you cant say that a person who invests 20$ (a starter + 5 boosters) is going to be able to get the same efficiency in their best deck as a person who invests 200$ (4 starters + 80 boosters). The person with the higher investment in this case is going to be able to create more synergized decks unless the lower investor lucks out and is able to create a deck very close to the meta with those 5 boosters.

Bottom line : The game is not "pay to win" or "pay to play" in their respective purest forms. On the spectrum I would argue Hex lands somewhere in the middle, as PvP does not require investment (if we are to be factual) but in order to compete you must invest, although arguably not that much, you must still invest.

jai151
06-19-2013, 12:12 PM
Its a greyscale, but PvP is "pay to play" in the purest sense. It does contain P2W elements (since you have a higher chance of having great cards if you have invested more into the game, which in turn will increase your chances of winning). Now, the great thing about the current system is that it has diminishing returns on the value of investing further into it into a single set. But you cant say that a person who invests 20$ (a starter + 5 boosters) is going to be able to get the same efficiency in their best deck as a person who invests 200$ (4 starters + 80 boosters). The person with the higher investment in this case is going to be able to create more synergized decks unless the lower investor lucks out and is able to create a deck very close to the meta with those 5 boosters.

Bottom line : The game is not "pay to win" or "pay to play" in their respective purest forms. On the spectrum I would argue Hex lands somewhere in the middle, as PvP does not require investment (if we are to be factual) but in order to compete you must invest, although arguably not that much, you must still invest.

Pay to win, however, implies that you're directly buying bonuses. Better cards, boosts to power, etc, etc. The person who invests $20 could easily wind up being lucky and pulling better cards or being able to trade those cards for a much more powerful deck than the guy who spent more. And the guy who takes $20 in platinum and buys a deck is likely going to wipe the floor with either of the ones who bought boosters and tried to put one together.

Xarek
06-19-2013, 12:20 PM
Everything to do with the VIP program should be related to booster or tournament costs in some way.

I would like to see the VIP program extended to something like $16/month for 1 free draft a week.

Aldazar
06-19-2013, 12:39 PM
... the guy who takes $20 in platinum and buys a deck is likely going to wipe the floor with either of the ones who bought boosters and tried to put one together.

Isn't this literally paying to win? You pay $20, you wipe the floor with players who didn't pay $20. Sure, in this example, you are comparing to people who spend $20 and $200, but if you compare it to someone who paid $0, both the $20 guys and the $200 guy have a much better than 50-50 shot of winning, so you are, essentially, paying to win, it looks to me.

Though to be fair, as mentioned by someone else, it's diminishing returns - you can't pay $1,000,000 to beat everyone who spent $999,999 or less. The optimal way to "pay to win" will be to just buy constructed decks directly, I guess...

jai151
06-19-2013, 12:41 PM
Isn't this literally paying to win? You pay $20, you wipe the floor with players who didn't pay $20. Sure, in this example, you are comparing to people who spend $20 and $200, but if you compare it to someone who paid $0, both the $20 guys and the $200 guy have a much better than 50-50 shot of winning, so you are, essentially, paying to win, it looks to me.

Though to be fair, as mentioned by someone else, it's diminishing returns - you can't pay $1,000,000 to beat everyone who spent $999,999 or less. The optimal way to "pay to win" will be to just buy constructed decks directly, I guess...

Actually, no, it's paying $20 to wipe the floor with someone who paid $200. Someone who knows the game, plays a lot of PvE, and is good at trading could spend $0 and wipe the floor with everybody.

Rydavim
06-19-2013, 01:02 PM
The VIP program already gives very good value. The idea is to make committing to a payment plan more affordable than spending otherwise, a common MMO business model. The goal is not to give VIP players an advantage over others. It is fine the way it is. If you don't think that's enough, then don't subscribe.

nandus
06-19-2013, 01:15 PM
Actually, no, it's paying $20 to wipe the floor with someone who paid $200. Someone who knows the game, plays a lot of PvE, and is good at trading could spend $0 and wipe the floor with everybody.

True, that could happen. But the odds of someone taking a $0 start in PVE and somehow get a consistent top competitive deck in PVP, are slim to none IMO. Although it's been stated that there will be some boosters as rewards in the PVE campaign, most of the work will have to be done in dungeons and raids to earn gold. With said gold then one would have to trade for Platinum in the AH, so as in turn finally get packs from there or the CZE store.

As it's been widely discussed, the exchange rate of gold to platinum is likely to be very low. PVP players don't have much use for gold and PVE players who invest in the game(at least at first), won't do so heavily, due to the F2P nature of the gameplay. Eventually it might be worthwhile for a PVE player to farm gold for trading and thus get a consistent Platinum stream for PVP investments, but due to the low exchange rate, the time investment needed to just get to the PVP would be excruciating. Plus the constant rotation of cards means this would have to be done constantly week after week.

In conclusion, unless someone is like a genius and it's able to consistently win every tournament, it's difficult for me to picture how a F2P PVE player would be able to keep up with the constantly changing PVP world; without putting some extra money in the game or being a 24/7 hex playing bot like human ;)

Fireblast
06-19-2013, 01:19 PM
Is Tennis pay 2 win?
Yes cause you have to buy a racket...

Buying the tools required to play doesn't mean it's pay 2 win.

~

jai151
06-19-2013, 01:29 PM
Gold is not the only thing you will get from PvE. It's quite possible to find rare and legendary cards and equipment that could be traded for Platinum or PvP cards. At that point, it's a matter of just assembling the deck or trading your way to enough packs to enter a constructed or draft tournament. And it snowballs from there.

nandus
06-19-2013, 01:29 PM
The VIP program already gives very good value. The idea is to make committing to a payment plan more affordable than spending otherwise, a common MMO business model. The goal is not to give VIP players an advantage over others. It is fine the way it is. If you don't think that's enough, then don't subscribe.

It gives good value yes, but it can do better. The subscription( I know that term is no very politically correct, but let's ignore that for now) can be as affordable as it can be. No one is saying replace the VIP with a $10 version, what the OP suggest and I support is that it can have different tiers; so people can choose what they can afford. It doesn't need to be an exponential increase in value, it can simply be done incrementally; I.E. something like $8 for 8 packs a month. It's worth to mention that most MMO games, specially those with F2P model, use an exponential reward system.

jai151
06-19-2013, 01:55 PM
It gives good value yes, but it can do better. The subscription( I know that term is no very politically correct, but let's ignore that for now) can be as affordable as it can be. No one is saying replace the VIP with a $10 version, what the OP suggest and I support is that it can have different tiers; so people can choose what they can afford. It doesn't need to be an exponential increase in value, it can simply be done incrementally; I.E. something like $8 for 8 packs a month. It's worth to mention that most MMO games, specially those with F2P model, use an exponential reward system.

However, this is effectively doing what Cory has gone on record as saying he didn't want (and would be preventing), one account with multiple VIP subs.

majin
06-19-2013, 02:17 PM
@OP you can check this similar thread http://forums.cryptozoic.com/showthread.php?t=25428

Rydavim
06-19-2013, 02:17 PM
It's worth to mention that most MMO games, specially those with F2P model, use an exponential reward system.

This is somewhat true, but paying more money per month doesn't normally get you better advantages, at least in the games I am personally familiar with. You get the same rewards per month, but pay less the longer you commit to doing so. For example, it might be $15/mo if you pay every month, but if you pay for 6 months, it's $13/mo. I am personally not familiar with any games which give you a competitive edge the more money you pay. TCGs already "require" some investment to be competitive, and I would worry that adding additional perks to the "subscription" model would push the game further towards P2W instead of P2P.

As a side note, they've already discouraged having multiple VIP accounts, so I would not expect them to add any additional tiers of "stacking" booster value, such as 8 packs for $8.

OutlandishMatt
06-19-2013, 03:08 PM
Doesn't the current VIP program include the goldfish feature? That's neither boosters or decks. That's a game feature I am now having to pay $4 to get. No offense to Cory, but if they don't branch out further than just boosters, decks, and currency they're missing out. They should sell playmats, sleeves, counters, and any other type of non-gameplay cosmetic thing they can.

ZeroCool
06-19-2013, 03:14 PM
I would be fairly unhappy if there was anything similar to the KS rewards.

nandus
06-19-2013, 04:46 PM
However, this is effectively doing what Cory has gone on record as saying he didn't want (and would be preventing), one account with multiple VIP subs.

No one is claiming such a thing. I sincerely don't know, from what I wrote, what gave you that idea. Of course there should be one sub per account and furthermore one sub per PERSON, that's why it's going to be checked against the credit card used for the account. Yes, there will be cases with people with several credit cards and thus accounts; but the booster/card movement within them will be checked to prevent abuses. This system, although not foolproof(nothing really is), is quite good to prevent such abuse and I trust CZE will be able to implement it well.


This is somewhat true, but paying more money per month doesn't normally get you better advantages, at least in the games I am personally familiar with. You get the same rewards per month, but pay less the longer you commit to doing so. For example, it might be $15/mo if you pay every month, but if you pay for 6 months, it's $13/mo. I am personally not familiar with any games which give you a competitive edge the more money you pay. TCGs already "require" some investment to be competitive, and I would worry that adding additional perks to the "subscription" model would push the game further towards P2W instead of P2P.

As a side note, they've already discouraged having multiple VIP accounts, so I would not expect them to add any additional tiers of "stacking" booster value, such as 8 packs for $8.

One of the games I play, well when I have the time that is, is Planetside 2. If you are not familiar with it, it's a F2P MMO FPS; with massive continent wide maps and vehicular combat. In this game having a subscription gives you several nice bonuses, for example you've got increased resource(used for vehicles and advanced weapons) and experience(unlock stuff) gain. The game also sells functional(change how something works, so it fits your play style) and cosmetic(skins, helmets, etc) products in a store. The point is that, since you can still get everything without paying a dime, having the bonuses for subscribers don't make the game P2W; F2P players can still be as competitive if they put more time in it. I think this is a great example for Hex to follow on the PVE stuff.

In PVP, nothing in any subscription should give you an advantage over other players obviously, but IMO it should indeed be able to give you more value for your money. That's why I suggested a higher level VIP tier, in which you spend more and get more, proportionally not exponentially(since one can argue that a high enough exponential tier system, could become detrimental to the health of the game economy) I never proposed multiple VIP accounts, but it seems that something was not clear in my post, since you were not the only one to misunderstand that part.

Everyone coming into this game has different expectations and desires, some want to do mostly PVE and care little for the PVP side; while others come from others TCGs(digital or not) and want to go full PVP. For the hardcore PVP, the one that (would have) wanted Pro Player in the KS and didn't get it, a VIP sub is a "little too little too late". For the PVE player, the VIP program now offers little to no incentive whatsoever. Thus this thread and what the OP proposes, with more tiers/levels to the VIP program, there would be more options for players to choose and that IMO would be awesome :)

Rydavim
06-19-2013, 05:13 PM
I never proposed multiple VIP accounts, but it seems that something was not clear in my post, since you were not the only one to misunderstand that part.

No, you're right, you didn't. However, two accounts with VIP (4 packs/mo for $4 + 4 packs/mo for $4) is semantically equivalent to your suggestion of 8 packs/mo for $4. My point isn't to blindly shoot down all ideas, but to point out that in this specific instance Cryptozoic has all but confirmed this will not be an option. $2/pack is already significantly cheaper than other TCGs, MtG for example, and they need to make money somewhere. EDIT: As far as I know Cryptozoic hasn't said anything against having multiple accounts, just against having multiple VIP plans. That leads me to believe that 8 packs/mo is a devaluation they're not wiling, or able, to do. My 2.

In a similar vein, I don't necessarily think that having a "PvE'er" monthly plan would be a bad thing. But again, Cryptozoic has already confirmed that, for now, the only things available for money will be starter decks, boosters, PvP entry fees, and their already-announced monthly plan. There are some good points and suggestions in this thread, but the practicality of anything being implemented for Set 1 at this point...it's just not likely.

Unhurtable
06-20-2013, 02:07 AM
Actually, no, it's paying $20 to wipe the floor with someone who paid $200. Someone who knows the game, plays a lot of PvE, and is good at trading could spend $0 and wipe the floor with everybody.

Then you could apply this to any P2W game as you could trade accounts with someone with funds gotten from starting at 0$. Lets say I start playing Hex when it launches, start creating a fortune by selling legendary gear and cards from PvE. Then I sell my cards (maybe even the account) and use those funds to buy an account in "P2W Heaven" with all the ubergear. Does that make the game not P2W as you can reach the highest power by not investing anything?


Is Tennis pay 2 win?
Yes cause you have to buy a racket...

Buying the tools required to play doesn't mean it's pay 2 win.

~

Buying the tools in this case is the computer/keyboard/mouse etc.
If I buy indoor shoes, I can use those shoes to play floorball, tennis and almost any indoor sport. Just like I can buy a computer with mouse, keyboard and a headset and play most games.
On the other hand, if I could pay off the judge in floorball to give me a significant advantage, that is pay to win.

As I mentioned earlier, there is a greyscale when it comes to most games and sports. Tennis is one sport where you can actually invest heavily into your equipment and improve your game. It might not be a significant improvement, but you are still trading monetary funds for better equipment.


Pay to win, however, implies that you're directly buying bonuses. Better cards, boosts to power, etc, etc. The person who invests $20 could easily wind up being lucky and pulling better cards or being able to trade those cards for a much more powerful deck than the guy who spent more. And the guy who takes $20 in platinum and buys a deck is likely going to wipe the floor with either of the ones who bought boosters and tried to put one together.

But you are essentially buying better cards by buying boosters, otherwise the starting decks would be the best. Yes, a person who invests 20$ in a single deck might wipe the floor with people who just buy boosters and put decks together. Lets expand upon this argument.

Lets say we have 2 people who have reached the maximum capabilities of deckbuilding (in other words, if we give them enough funds they will make the best deck in the game). We give the first person 10$ to build a deck with and the second person 20$ to build a deck with. We now have 2 reasonable scenarios on our hands.
1. The lower cost deck ties with the higher cost deck. This would mean the game is less P2W as the limit to reach competitiveness is lower.
2. The higher cost deck wins over the lower cost deck. This would mean the game is more P2W as the limit to reach competitiveness is higher.
As the game is free to play, its "P2W-factor" is based on the minimum amount of money you have to spend in order to be competitive.

Lets get back to the single-deck versus booster situation. If one person invests 20$ into a single deck and another person invests 400$ into boosters, the person who invests 400$ into boosters will still be better suited for competitions since.
A. He will most likely be able to build the first persons deck through, at most, a little bit of trading.
B. He will be able to build other decks and possibly adapt to the metagame.
Option B is hard to achieve with the first persons single deck since that persons deck is most likely going to go below 20$ if it goes out of meta (or even worse, some cards might be banned/nerfed in the deck). Now, true, the first person could hype up the deck before its value goes down and possibly sell it for more than 20$, but its going to take a lot of work for the first person to reach the situation of the person who invested 400$ into boosters.

Fireblast
06-20-2013, 03:24 AM
It's not a P2W game because as all TCG when it comes to world championships and such, all the players play the cards they WANTED to.

A competitive deck could cost between $10 and $1000, it doesn't matter as long as the game is balanced and there are cheap options.

~

jai151
06-20-2013, 05:05 AM
Then you could apply this to any P2W game as you could trade accounts with someone with funds gotten from starting at 0$. Lets say I start playing Hex when it launches, start creating a fortune by selling legendary gear and cards from PvE. Then I sell my cards (maybe even the account) and use those funds to buy an account in "P2W Heaven" with all the ubergear. Does that make the game not P2W as you can reach the highest power by not investing anything?

Trading accounts in almost any game is against the TOS. Trading cards is not. And if you look at your example, you were still paying.


Buying the tools in this case is the computer/keyboard/mouse etc.
If I buy indoor shoes, I can use those shoes to play floorball, tennis and almost any indoor sport. Just like I can buy a computer with mouse, keyboard and a headset and play most games.
On the other hand, if I could pay off the judge in floorball to give me a significant advantage, that is pay to win.

And since you can't pay off the judge here...


But you are essentially buying better cards by buying boosters, otherwise the starting decks would be the best. Yes, a person who invests 20$ in a single deck might wipe the floor with people who just buy boosters and put decks together. Lets expand upon this argument.

Lets say we have 2 people who have reached the maximum capabilities of deckbuilding (in other words, if we give them enough funds they will make the best deck in the game). We give the first person 10$ to build a deck with and the second person 20$ to build a deck with. We now have 2 reasonable scenarios on our hands.
1. The lower cost deck ties with the higher cost deck. This would mean the game is less P2W as the limit to reach competitiveness is lower.
2. The higher cost deck wins over the lower cost deck. This would mean the game is more P2W as the limit to reach competitiveness is higher.
As the game is free to play, its "P2W-factor" is based on the minimum amount of money you have to spend in order to be competitive.

Lets get back to the single-deck versus booster situation. If one person invests 20$ into a single deck and another person invests 400$ into boosters, the person who invests 400$ into boosters will still be better suited for competitions since.
A. He will most likely be able to build the first persons deck through, at most, a little bit of trading.
B. He will be able to build other decks and possibly adapt to the metagame.
Option B is hard to achieve with the first persons single deck since that persons deck is most likely going to go below 20$ if it goes out of meta (or even worse, some cards might be banned/nerfed in the deck). Now, true, the first person could hype up the deck before its value goes down and possibly sell it for more than 20$, but its going to take a lot of work for the first person to reach the situation of the person who invested 400$ into boosters.

There is no guarantee that those boosters will contain better cards.

Look, let's just get to the base of the matter. In a pay to win scenario, someone can directly buy something from the company which gives them an undeniable and guaranteed advantage. In a pay to play scenario, there's a cost barrier to entry but no way to buy an advantage.

In this case, all you can buy from the company are starters and boosters. You cannot buy individual cards. You can not buy PvE power ups. There is no way to pay money to CZE and get a guaranteed advantage. There is no way to buy your way to the end of the PvE campaign or to the top spot in a tournament.

OutlandishMatt
06-20-2013, 05:37 AM
In this case, all you can buy from the company are starters and boosters. You cannot buy individual cards. You can not buy PvE power ups. There is no way to pay money to CZE and get a guaranteed advantage. There is no way to buy your way to the end of the PvE campaign or to the top spot in a tournament.

Technically, King and above KS tiers did pay to win with the spectral lotus garden for PvE. Also, technically, you can Pay to Win in PvP called collusion and bribes.

jai151
06-20-2013, 05:46 AM
Technically, King and above KS tiers did pay to win with the spectral lotus garden for PvE. Also, technically, you can Pay to Win in PvP called collusion and bribes.

Kickstarter rewards really kind of need to be disregarded. It was a limited time promotional thing, and we weren't technically buying anything, we were donating.

And while you could bribe, you can't exactly call that pay to win, as 1) I gotta believe it's gonna be against ToS, and 2) You're still not paying anything to CZE.

Dropbear
06-20-2013, 05:58 AM
VIP should stay with 1 booster a week + free tournament.

I would only support Cryptozoic if it included a version for Booster Draft and eliminating some fees for tournaments outside of VIP. Nothing else should be allowed that could be considered game changing.

BenRGamer
06-20-2013, 06:51 AM
While the KS-theme VIP programs wouldn't work--I feel that there is something of merit to be found in the idea, that is, PvE Boosters.

Boosters with PvE cards and equipment, to make VIP valuable even to those who don't like PvP.

It could be something you choose either when you get the pack, either a PvP pack of one of the current sets, or a PvE pack with random PvE cards or equipment

Unhurtable
06-20-2013, 08:37 AM
There is no guarantee that those boosters will contain better cards.

Look, let's just get to the base of the matter. In a pay to win scenario, someone can directly buy something from the company which gives them an undeniable and guaranteed advantage. In a pay to play scenario, there's a cost barrier to entry but no way to buy an advantage.

In this case, all you can buy from the company are starters and boosters. You cannot buy individual cards. You can not buy PvE power ups. There is no way to pay money to CZE and get a guaranteed advantage. There is no way to buy your way to the end of the PvE campaign or to the top spot in a tournament.

So what you are saying is that if there is an MMORPG that sells a "Sword Ticket" that has a 1% chance to become "Ubersword of Doom", it is no longer P2W as its not guaranteed that you will get the Ubersword?

Lets use your example of a pay to play scenario. There is a cost barrier to entry but no way to buy an advantage. Is Hex a game that only contains pay to play scenarios? No, because the free decks will (most likely) not be the decks that win the tournaments (where the entry prize serves as the cost barrier). From the entry barrier, there are ways to pay money to CZE and get a potential advantage. It is no guaranteed, but even if you only get cards you cannot use in your deck, you can still trade those cards away for cards that will enhance your deck. In other words, you have paid extra to get an advantage. Even if we ignore boosters and just look at a person investing 20$ into a single deck, that person has still increased his chances of winning the tournament, and hence has paid someone something to get an advantage in general. As I mentioned earlier, there is nothing pointing toward a 400$ deck always beating a 20$ deck or even having an advantage. Now, to be fair, it could turn out that the free decks rule supreme, but this entire discussion is based upon that not being the case.

In this case, all you can buy from the company are starters and boosters. How much are you willing to bet that the starter decks will be stronger than the free decks in general?

Lastly, you can't pay off a judge in the specific sense, but you can still pay money to play by a different set of rules, as you will then have a different set of cards. A sport, or a game that is pay to play in its purest form, generally allows you to choose any tools you wish to use to exercise that sport or game (racket, shoes and clothes for tennis, keyboard, mouse and computer for Starcraft), but no matter what tools you use the rules of the game stay the same. There are limits to what you are allowed to do with a racket, just as starcraft tournaments do not allow mouse macros. In this sense, cards in TCGs are not tools as you are allowed to do different things with different tools.

Don't get me wrong, I would be thrilled if this game has an "entry barrier" of 20$ decks (or lower), but that doesn't change the fact that you have a better deck after investing 20$ compared to the free deck you start with.

OutlandishMatt
06-20-2013, 09:56 AM
Have they even stated that the free decks can be used in PvP. I assume everything they give you for free will be PvE. They will probably not even have a way for you to start playing PvP for free because of the difficulty scale. You can ramp up from Novice to Expert with AI and make a curve but PvP is going to be immediate Expert difficulty. You wouldn't want your new players turned away by losing all of the time.

jai151
06-20-2013, 11:24 AM
Unhurtable, I get the feeling either you've never played a pay to win game before or you've never played a tcg before.

If Hex were a pay to win, the best cards would be available as singles from CZE for premium prices, as would things like "Health vial ($5) start your next 5 games with 25 health" and "Troop Booster ($5) all your troops gain swiftstrike"

Hex is just the standard TCG model.

OutlandishMatt
06-20-2013, 12:55 PM
@jai151 I think he's saying TCGs are in general Pay to Win. I agree to a degree. I fear after Set 1, Hex will be as bad as Magic with Legendaries equaling Mythics. Look at the price of Jace the Mind Sculptor for Magic. At its peak in Standard it was over $100. If you wanted to build a competitive blue deck, you felt you had to play him.

Diesbudt
06-20-2013, 01:03 PM
Unhurtable, I get the feeling either you've never played a pay to win game before or you've never played a tcg before.

If Hex were a pay to win, the best cards would be available as singles from CZE for premium prices, as would things like "Health vial ($5) start your next 5 games with 25 health" and "Troop Booster ($5) all your troops gain swiftstrike"

Hex is just the standard TCG model.

TCG's are not P2W. They are however P2have-advantage. As the more you pay the more options you can have in deck building. HOWEVER that can mean nothing, when it comes to actually playing. A friend of mine got 4th in some huge MTG tournament years ago without ever spending a cent on cards. Want to know how? Traded. Wheeled and dealed his way to the cards he wanted and he was good. Really good. His deck was nothing amazing, like some people who spend $700+ on a deck.

Diesbudt
06-20-2013, 01:06 PM
I find the irony though of a game being called P2W, when said same game has some people still held up/annoyed by the possibility of mana flood/mana screw.

Unhurtable
06-20-2013, 03:06 PM
Unhurtable, I get the feeling either you've never played a pay to win game before or you've never played a tcg before.

If Hex were a pay to win, the best cards would be available as singles from CZE for premium prices, as would things like "Health vial ($5) start your next 5 games with 25 health" and "Troop Booster ($5) all your troops gain swiftstrike"

Hex is just the standard TCG model.

I have played my fair share of P2W games and I played MTG when I was younger. You are trying to argue that Hex isn't P2W since it is not P2W in its purest form, which is not true since its a greyscale. Its not black and white.

Lets say Hex was 20$ up front instead of F2P but instead of boosters you had 4 of all cards from the start (pay to play in its purest form, pay once and you get everything in the game). Its no longer a TCG by definition, but that would still mean that Hex in its current form isn't pay to play as you can get more tools in the game by paying more money, which does not fit into the purest form of pay to play. But we should all recognize that its a greyscale.


TCG's are not P2W. They are however P2have-advantage. As the more you pay the more options you can have in deck building. HOWEVER that can mean nothing, when it comes to actually playing. A friend of mine got 4th in some huge MTG tournament years ago without ever spending a cent on cards. Want to know how? Traded. Wheeled and dealed his way to the cards he wanted and he was good. Really good. His deck was nothing amazing, like some people who spend $700+ on a deck.

How is P2W not the same as P2have-advantage? There has literally never been a game in history where you pay to automatically win. You always pay for an advantage, sometimes very significant advantage that almost always leads to victory. A game where you pay to automatically win would never work as 2 people could pay the same and the game would essentially tie, which would mean that you still wouldn't win.

Yes, investing more into the game can mean nothing. That doesn't mean its automatically not P2W.

nandus
06-20-2013, 06:11 PM
How is P2W not the same as P2have-advantage? There has literally never been a game in history where you pay to automatically win. You always pay for an advantage, sometimes very significant advantage that almost always leads to victory. A game where you pay to automatically win would never work as 2 people could pay the same and the game would essentially tie, which would mean that you still wouldn't win.

Yes, investing more into the game can mean nothing. That doesn't mean its automatically not P2W.

The difference between P2W and P2P is very slim, if you pay you must get something in return and that which you get back must be desirable. It might just be a vanity item or a decrease of time investment(experience bonus for example), but whatever it is; it must have value. Both P2W and P2P give you something F2P players don't have, the key difference is that in P2W you get a CLEAR advantage over other players, while in P2P you usually get bonuses that reduces the time you need to advance in the game.

An example of P2W bonus in a MMO would be to get a special bonus to attack in the game, making you instantly more powerful than other players. In contrast, a P2P bonus might be a x% increase of experience gain, making you level up faster; but without making you clearly more powerful than other player. The key is that F2P players MUST be able to get the same things that P2P players, it'll just be a little harder.

In conclusion, it's clear that we want to avoid any P2W in Hex, it's a disturbing tactic to squeeze money out of consumers and it needs to go away from the industry ASAP. Thus VIP rewards must not give bonuses/equipment/anything that is not available for F2P players or any other regular PVP player, so far CZE has not announced nothing that violates this and neither does the VIP options the OP proposes.

nandus
06-20-2013, 06:49 PM
I have been going over what the OP proposes and trying to actually come up with these(at least valid) additional options/tiers for the VIP program, taking into account everything that's being discusses across the general forum; regarding booster/card value and all the AH represents as a secondary market. So first some assumptions ...

Assumptions:
- As per expectations: 1$ = 100p
- Nothing from CZE can be valued less than 100p
- All tournament fees cost 100p
- Booster drafts can't be traded and don't include boosters(they are generated when the draft starts)
- Value of boosters in draft packs should be less, since they can't be traded nor they can be primal

400p - 1 Month of "Entry Level" VIP (1000p value)
1 Booster per week (800p value)
1 VIP tournament entry per month (100p value)
Goldfish deck building tool (100p value?)

1000p - 1 Month of "Dungeon Raider" VIP (2000p value)
1 Month of "Entry Level" VIP (400p value)
50% extra loot (500p value?)
+10% PVE Experience (700p value?)
5 Random crafting materials a week (300p value?)
1 Wild West tournament entry per month (100p value?)

2000p - 1 Month of "Pro Player" VIP (3300p value)
1 Month of "Entry Level" VIP (400p value)
1 Constructed tournament entry per week (400p)
1 Booster draft per week (2500p value?)

The boosters for the draft can't be Primal nor be traded, so I valued them at 175p. For many stuff the exact value is hard to determine, I've put values that seem right to me; but of course it will need a lot of balancing. As a standard, I think we can be pretty sure that tournament fees will be 100p; since that's the cost they have advertised so far for all tournaments revealed.

The value ratio for the Entry Level VIP is 1000/400 = 2.5, for Dungeon Raider VIP is 2000/1000 = 2 and Pro Player VIP is 3200/2000 = 1.65 This means that in each VIP tier, you get X(substitute for value ratio) more value for your money. However, as you can see, the more money you invest; the less bang for your buck. This means that relatively speaking, the more money you put into a VIP program, the less value you get out of it. This should help keep things in check.

Additionaly, as with any subscription, there should be a bonus for getting it in advance for a set amount of time; higher than just one month. I think we should simplify things here and make it so that for every 6 months you pay in advance, you get one for free. Thus:

2000p - 6 Months of "Entry Level" VIP
5000p - 6 Months of "Dungeon Raider" VIP
10000p - 6 Months of "Pro Player" VIP

I've tried to keep things balanced and don't add anything that might cause the game to go P2W, nor upset the economy adding more VIP boosters. I would like to say I am proud of this, but first I need to know if you guys think it sucks or not ;) Please let me know.

PD: A Wild West Tournament would be a fun way for PVErs to do some PVP(great way to slowly introduce them to a more expert level of play) and use everything from their PVE accounts in battle, with PVE(and maybe PVP as well) rewards as prizes.

majin
06-21-2013, 10:20 AM
Let me repost this from http://forums.cryptozoic.com/showthread.php?t=25428&p=255620&viewfull=1#post255620

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For me, the most feasible subscriptions that won't break the economy and might cater to people and won't make the KS pledgers go angry are:

$20 - $22 for 4 weeks => free draft a week for 4 weeks. why is this reasonable? you only save $6 to $8 and there's no chance for a primal, it's a trade off but it won't break the economy and still give people the chance to draft at a reduced rate

$216 - $237.6 => 1 year draft, same as above, 10% discount

$10 for 12 weeks => gets you 1 draft token per week, you save $2 but you can't use it all at once, you need to wait every week for the free token

$40 for 52 weeks => same as above, a bit discounted

$50 for 1 month => gives the player the raid leader bonus for a month (I know this should have been exclusive but the raid leaders and above will be saving $480 per year because of their innate bonus). I over priced it so the raid leader+ won't feel cheated. For me, this is still a good to let the others have a taste of the RL bonus

$50 for 1 month => same as above but to get the dungeon bonus

the reason why I want to do this is the more regular cash flow that CZE gets, the more cash they can invest in the game as Cory wants to do / happen