Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

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Rendus
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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Rendus » Sun Feb 09, 2014 5:58 pm

There are a few ways this will increase subscribership long term:

From my interpretation of things, this will put Silver/Free players at 4000 or 5000AA, with their 1000AA cap. Want more AA, ever? Subscribe, or fork out 250SC per 100AA cap increase. That's $100ish? to get your cap raised to auto-grant levels, I think. And with that you still don't get access to Prestige gear.

There's the attraction of being more useful, more functional, faster - Getting more abilities with each level, more functionality, better survivability... They may actually stick around to play, free to play or otherwise. And more players leads to more subscribers.

Then, there's just the passive benefit of not scaring customers away with the grind that remains legendary amongst even Korean MMOs. To a returning player, the task of getting to useful AA levels is utterly horrifying - And this is coming from someone that at one point was... I think second or third in total AA in the guild? That would six-box monster missions at work *for fun* grinding out AAs?

Remember, the example number I gave is an AA per five minutes - I'll even drop the idea that it was with LOTD and/or XP potions. Sure, let's trim that down to 2.5min/AA, and the hour count to a nice round 200.

That's 5 full-time work weeks worth of grind. In a group. Nonstop. With no progress toward leveling. No progress on anything else that takes XP either. If you manage to get such a focused group for 2 hours a night, that's 100 nights of grinding. And that's to get to what EQ developers clearly consider to be a baseline level of functionality with your character, while leaving 4 expansions plus extras worth of AA to grind through.

And many of those nights will earn you the joy of buying some garbage, obsolete AA (my favorite is Dire Charm, or maybe Eldritch Rune, or the level-capped stuns...), or another step along the 43 rank, 327AA-long grind for max Combat Stability at level 95 alone. When you're starting from scratch, this stuff more than negates any lures there are to keep you playing.

Yeah, I don't know that this is the optimal solution, but really, they need to do something. They needed to address this before Free to Play happened, but better late than never.

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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Sevex » Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:52 pm

Many non-gold customers will buy gold for one month per year because each new expansion gives them a new grant. 11 months at silver keeping the new grant...

If you don't play much, why pay much?

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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Rendus » Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:55 pm

Then they'll eternally be 4 expansions of AA behind. And that's still, despite your cynicism, a manner of subscription and income along with a continued audience, a wider sustained playerbase that's capable of doing more than a Silver or Free player that doesn't do that, further adding value.

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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Mattmarr » Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:53 pm

Hey, one month subscription income per year is better than no subscription income.

My only negative for this has been the same: people not knowing how to use their AA's and which ones outrank others. But I think the positives for old returners (even some of our vets mentioned maybe coming back after the grant) and those who have limited play time will benefit.

Will people use it as an incentive to use silver except for a grant aa month? Sure. Is that going to affect you? Maybe more groups, which are rare outside of guilds nowadays.

Overall, it's a positive. It stinks for those of us who have been grinding out the old fashion way, but that's no reason to continue the struggle.
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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Glauri » Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:59 pm

Mattmarr wrote:It stinks for those of us who have been grinding out the old fashion way, but that's no reason to continue the struggle.
I don't know. I've had some awfully good times with my groupmates through the years while spending all those hours grinding AAs. I'm not sure I'd ever want to trade them away.

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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Mattmarr » Sun Feb 09, 2014 11:06 pm

Glauri wrote:
Mattmarr wrote:It stinks for those of us who have been grinding out the old fashion way, but that's no reason to continue the struggle.
I don't know. I've had some awfully good times with my groupmates through the years while spending all those hours grinding AAs. I'm not sure I'd ever want to trade them away.


Agreed! It's really a feeling of accomplishment and fun. But, if your any AA dependent class (tanks) there is a period of time you are basically made useless. You can't tank or DPS without AA's and thus are worthless unless you have friends who will let you soak exp. Gone are the days we had when we could find groups with random real people and grind exp together.
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Re: Changes with the February Update: Developer Updates

Postby Rendus » Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:31 am

I agree on the grouping thing - If it happened more reliably at lower levels/content tiers, I'd love to do the oddball stuff bored groups would get into. Or try to convince non-knight/wars to just go ahead and tank, I've got them covered.

One of my most memorable MMO groups ever was an insane run in BOT with two rangers I convinced to tank... Without a debuffer in group. One had their 1.0 epic with the slow proc, but until that went off, yow. They setup a tank rotation at some point, and while I didn't have much chance to do much more than watch HP and Mana bars jerk back and forth, it was a random menagerie of people that managed to ride the ragged edge of our abilities and get away with it. It was a lot better than the typical response of someone dropping group anyway.

Side note... Holy Crap. That was a decade ago. More, even.