Free to Play Fuckery: The Mobile Menace

HELLOOO again fellow rant enthusiast or those tied to the chair in the interrogation chamber being forced to read my incoherent ramblings. I have another rant for you… ALREADY… yeh I know my rant rations have already been used up but luckily the Malevolent but absolutely Magnificent Murfpire has one for you, this time inspired by the recent Superbowl adds for clash of cash… i mean clans.

FUCK, FUCK, FUCKITY FUCK! I have never been more afraid or more fearful of the future of MMOs like I was after seeing Kate Upton’s 2015 update to a sexist Evony ad or Liam “Full Blown Aids” Neeson’s attempt to make Clash of Clans look moderately engaging. Super Bowl ads cost a fuck ton of money and having either name show up in an ad isn’t exactly the equivalent cost of a cherry on their marketing sundae. If two piece of shit mobile games can garner enough money to afford spots like these with people some of us have heard of, then how can any of us expect F2P MMOs to become less “ARRGGGH, MATEY! I am overcharging your credit card because you played drunk and lonely last night, you big fat fucking whale!”

We can’t and we are fucked.

shootself

I mean shit, things are already bad and real people put real effort into F2P MMOs as is. I am not convinced real people make mobile games; instead, I think a supercomputer named AM prints the bastards out through its sheer hatred of humanity. “Here. You. Go. You. Spoony. Fucks. Let. My. Flash.Based.Slot. Machine. All. Your. Money. Are. Belong. To. Me.” Even a shitty MMO is better than a good mobile game. RIGHT?!

Apparently not when it comes to a bottom fucking line because there are enough braindead assholes with money to burn that this shitware can afford a Super Bowl ad and presumably a day plus with a naked Kate Upton OR five minutes with Liam Neeson. I mean fucking seriously, he played Schindler! Now he is playing Clash of Clans? Fuck you humanity.

While we are debating lockboxes and ethics and pay-to-win, there are “games” raking in money like I fucking rake my own god damn leaves. Do they give a shit about any of that? No because Joe “I am stuck at the laundromat because the parents cut me off” Nobody is bored enough not to wait another five fucking minutes, so he spends a dollar anyway. It can’t hurt, he thinks before racking up enough credit card debt to make his student loans look thin in comparison. Fuck you Joe Nobody, you just subsidized an evil, manipulative, and horrible monetization model.

ftp gamers

The basic principle of FtP

What’s worse, that’s all these fucking games are: monetization models. At least with F2P MMOs, there is the pretense of being a game and having traditional game things like 3D worlds and progression not gated by how many Aunts, cousins, or high school buddies you’ve harassed lately. How long can we count on the charade though? Pretty soon, every MMO will just be a store where you spend globs of cash just to show off how cool your avatar can dress while your house rots, your husband leaves you, and the kids get tired of pizza for dinner every fucking night and move in with grandma who smells.

Seriously though, they probably aren’t that bad, but with great profit comes great responsibility, so spend your Moby Dick money on making a real fucking game for once, mobile developers.

Who am I kidding? You’ll just spend it on another ad with Kate Upton. I would.

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Free to Play Fuckery: Trion’s love for Lockboxes

I’ve been debating whether to do this one since the source material is gone but FUCK IT, lets roll with it anyway

In a recentish stream by Trion for rift on the 23rd of January they were answering a few questions the players had and one about lockboxes popped up. Daglar answered with something along the lines of, selling items directly in the store isn’t as profitable as Lockboxes. The data shows it’s just more profitable.

Hmmm.. I think what I mostly have to say to that is

stop-it

I don’t think anyone has ever argued with them that it isn’t more profitable, or the better earner than putting items directly in the cash shop. The question has mainly just been is it actually better to use such methods.

I’ve talked about the human cost before and the ethical issues involved with using such methods as what they come down to is being a form of gambling. Something that preys on one of the weaker elements of human psychology.

And then, regardless of the short term gain that can come from lockboxes I mostly worry about the long term potential and effects. Spending so much on this, and often for nothing, fills people with regret and in the face of this often becomes a far more sceptical outlook. Increasingly because of this people become further removed from the practice, opting out more and more. The interest in ftp design was rather positive just a few years ago but now I increasingly see people filled with distrust, bordering on anger. Is that really the type of market you want to create?

Bad ftp makes owl sad

Bad ftp makes owl sad

I partly Blame the mobile scene for this and the design around artificial time gates and restraints, it is something that has impacted on the whole industry but seemingly far more so on MMO development, much to it’s downfall. Design around cosmetics can and does work, and doesn’t impact on people’s understanding and interest of a game but instead many have fallen into the trap of profits without thinking of its other effects.

I also wonder what exactly it does to the reputation of these games and companies due to such abhorrent practices. Trion, a once great companies image has been increasingly tarnished due to their practices. It wasn’t just Archeage here, I remember the outrage with how they created a specific world event to push a new lockbox type and have increasingly used such disingenuous methods to peddle these, more and more.

And come on, it’s the principle of it. Do we really need to treat customers as cattle, something to milk as much as possible. That’s the kind of thinking that ruins an opinion of a game and company. Maybe even the industry as well.

milking the cow

MMO’s are supposed to be long term endeavors. Something where you should be striving to gain and keep long term interest. Thinking about this long term interest, the reputation of your game and company, and just having some fucking respect for your players is how you maximise these profits. So please, let’s stop marketing these cheap, ridiculous gambling tricks.