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On PlanetSide 2's Business Model

A post to the PlanetSide 2 Forums from earlier this week discusses how SOE will monetize PlanetSide 2, their upcoming free-to-play MMOFPS sequel (thanks Shacknews). The post, by Matt Higby, includes a frank discussion of the concerns that F2P often means "pay to win," and discusses the implications of offering paying customers advantages in such games and what benefits they have planned for members. Here is his outline of their philosophy:

Okay, so “access to stuff” is out as paid benefit. So too is “more powerful stuff”. So what do we do to keep the team employed in these jobs we love creating games that hopefully you guys love too? There are two things that we are considering selling in the game: Cosmetics and Convenience. That’s it. Seriously.

Cosmetics are pretty self-explanatory, I think everyone “gets it” with cosmetics and won’t be too upset at buying camo patterns or decals for real money.

What about Convenience, what does that mean exactly?

For us, convenience is purely the act of unlocking something faster, whether that means through buying a side-grade weapon directly with a StationCash microtransaction or earning certification points faster due to a boost or membership. That leads us to the real topic of the thread (which will probably end up being shorter than this “aside”, go figure).

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12. Re: On PlanetSide 2's Business Model Sep 22, 2012, 02:16 Veterator
You can't really comment on their prices or popularity of their F2P model until they've actually got all the weapons in, the costs of said weapons, and all the certs unlocked.

Right now I THINK you are limited to 100 certs and 25k Auraxium allowed to pool up maximum. And plenty of the certs already take 100 points to unlock the next level. And if you play enormous amounts you might get 30 certs a day, judging off what Im seeing.

So their system means you have to login often, and use your points and in-game money or waste your future efforts.

If they sell certs or boost cert gain by some noticeable amount, they've given you a huge reason.

And since A LOT of their weapons are 25K Auraxium, and it takes close to a week to get it...people are going to buy the weapons with real cash to get the leg up on people.

But so much is not working or added to the game as of now, it's pretty hard to judge. I find I really dislike their current resource system with Auraxium on top, and certs there to also keep you waiting. Battle Ranks right now seem to do nothing. Having to "buy" grenades you've unlocked at 150 resources a pop when you only have 750 total is stupid. And then you only seem to earn resources while logged in, it really makes it slow to actually use what you've bought.

Very unimpressed with the game for how much hype there's been around it...half a year or more of it and then fever pitch levels for a month or two and we slog on with little bitty changes waiting to see if they improve it or continue to screw it up. Having totally useless weapons categories is kinda laughable at this point when they have so few weapon choices. AA was pointless, lots of vehicle weapons don't do anything like what they claim...etc.

And how screwed up are MAX suits, some near insta-kill while others can barely hurt inf/vehicles. How can that go unbalanced.

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