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The Old Republic F2P This Fall

EA announces that they are adding a free-to-play option to Star Wars: The Old Republic this fall, a move many have been expecting for the Star Wars MMORPG, which has not exactly being WoWing everyone with its subscription model. Word is: "This option will give players access to each of the eight iconic Star Wars character class storylines, all the way up to level 50, with certain restrictions*. Unlimited game access, including new higher-level game content and new features will be made available through individual purchases or through a subscription option." Here's more:

Starting this fall, there will be two different ways to play Star Wars: The Old Republic:

  • Subscription – A service designed for players who want unrestricted access to all the game features via ongoing subscription or by redeeming a Game Time Card. In addition to gaining access to all game content as our current subscribers do now, Subscribers will receive ongoing monthly grants of Cartel Coins**, the new virtual currency that will be introduced later this fall. Cartel Coins can be used to purchase valuable items including customizable gear and convenience features that will enhance the game play experience.
  • Free-to-Play –The first 50 levels will be free-to-play, with some restrictions on access to new content and advanced player features. Some restrictions can be “unlocked” with Cartel Coins.

As the first step towards adding the new Free-to-Play option this fall, in August at retail Star Wars: The Old Republic will go on sale for $14.99 USD, including one-month of free subscription.

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79. Re: The Old Republic F2P This Fall Aug 2, 2012, 20:04 Veterator
Bhruic wrote on Aug 2, 2012, 09:03:
Veterator wrote on Aug 1, 2012, 23:09:
I am not sure we have the computing capability to do it, but it doesn't seem like anyone is even looking in that direction.

Oh, something like that could be doable. But you're overlooking human behaviour. You're always going to have people who find it more fun to ruin other people's experience than to do something on their own. Who's going to be interested in building things when you know that when you log off, someone can come along and destroy it all?

The trouble with so many of the truly interesting concepts when it comes to large-scale cooperative gaming is that they tend to rely on people having a cooperative mindset that just doesn't translate into reality. It's extremely difficult (hence why it hasn't been done) to create something truly open, and not have people end up abusing it.

Well that is kind of the point as well. You can't just build something and call it good until the end of time either.

You obviously can't have a system where someone can ruin the project from the safety of your own faction where there are no repercussions, checks, or blocks to prevent it.

But you also can't just build something and have enemy factions unable to sabotage, destroy, or otherwise counter it.

If you can prevent your own factions/side/whatever from ruining it, everything else is part of the game IMO. Aside from glitches, hacks, etc. If a clearly enemy player can get into your works and mess it up, it must not be important enough to warrant people monitoring/guarding/etc it.

In my head I see it like this: Personal projects are possible, but you're going to be building them in centralized and well protected places if you want to make any progress on them. Group/guild projects are possible in the less central areas, but definitely not on the enemy lines. On enemy lines you'll need the cooperative, massive scale efforts to pull off what would be trivial elsewhere. Guards, defenses, supply line protection, etc.

It could be something simple as permissions to enter sites of your own faction, or a reputation system. Bounty system to take out contracts on people who work against their fellows. It'd be quite easy to have 2k people come up with the sum to get a sizable bounty on someone who purposefully hindered your project. Versus say having one person take out the bounty on someone they don't like....if you do your bounty system correctly.

I favor the bounty system, because it has implications beyond just cooperative efforts. Perhaps you have someone who is cheating people on prices or is otherwise messing the game up for a load of other people. Get a bounty on him, make all of his belongings and cash steal-able by same faction entities through in-game systems and authorities. It'd be interesting to let the players police their population to some degree, with oversight from the devs/GMs for groups abusing it.

Far too many of the MMOs today let a lot of players get away with very questionable things, and there are no repercussions players can take against them. The best example is in WoW where people steal from the guild bank in large quantities. You can barely do anything to them if they stay on server. And less if they switch servers during a free move. And that's a cooperative environment (in some sense) that if you limit it too much it's useless. So you're stuck opening yourself up to people thieving with no way to punish them. They could remedy this if they really wanted to.

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