Content of the article: "Idea for a “whale-proof” game. Thoughts? Does this already exist?"
So obviously, while the mobile gaming community is split on a lot of subject, I think the majority of us are of the mindset that whales suck. They've ruined so many potentially awesome games it's insane. And it's not all their fault, it's the studios'. And I can't blame them, why fix what ain't broken? But I'm sure every one of us has gotten REALLY into a game, only to be hit with a paywall.
The ways I've seen games monitize ethically:
Cosmetics. Sure, sometimes they're crazy expensive, but it doesn't hinder the experience.
Up front premium games. I'm of the mindset that any game can be worth the money if it's proportional with the amount of fun and time you get from it. If I buy a $10 game and get 20 hours of enjoyment from it, that's 50 cents a day. Easily worth it.
Trial-to-Premium. Same concept as the previous point, with the added option of trying the game out to make sure you like it. This usually leads to more paywalls than up front premium games because it's still using the tactic of luring you in until you might be motivated to spend some money to continue.
The problem with those last two strategies is that it usually doesn't retain a player base as long or as effectively as non-predatory games. For a majority of games, the whole concept of p2w is self defeating. Sure, spend 10 bucks here, 10 bucks there. But there will be a point when a player will say "not worth it." A point where even whales won't swim. Then what? The games skids to a halt. You've been experiencing all this massive progression with not much of a rewarding feeling because you really didn't earn your way to where you are now, so after a while it seems pointless.
While those are good and all, I think there's another way games can monitize multiplayer games and still be fair. What if there were certain monetary thresholds that, once passed, will "lock" your account into that subset of money spent.
For example, if you get caught hacking in Dark Souls, you'll be "shadow banned" and the only people you can co-op or get invaded by are other hackers. You're taken out of the pool of players who don't hack.
What if a game put you into a certain pool of players that based on how much money you've spent. Like, if you spent anywhere from $10-$20 dollars, you'd only be matched up with others who have spent that much.
It gets rid of the massive gap of advantage that exists between f2p and p2w. And it would still be lucrative. I'm sure a good amount of people who spend money don't necessarily do it for the advantage alone. There's been countless times I've seen a cool ass weapon or an interesting item in a shop that made me want to buy it out of curiosity. It just so happens that most of the time, more money = more damage and that's it. But if there were different things to buy for people with different playstyles, it would encourage people to stay with the game. If you spend $100 on MTX, and everyone in your multiplayer pool is running around with varying power levels of basically the same weapons, I don't see the fun in that. Implementing a lot more varied options allowing for more diversity with builds and an emphasis on strategy over power would keep more players active.
What do you think, does this exist already?
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