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$15 per month for an alpha/beta...

Quijenoth Starkiller
You suggest Early Access route in your first post but isn't what they doing early access on a subscription model?

Its a different way of funding a game thats for sure.

Is it wrong? depends on your view.
Is it a mistake? again depends on your view.

I paid $100 for the kickstarter mostly for the extra PnP goodies but was very intrigued by the idea of a fantasy MMO sandbox. I have been playing since January and have purchased a second account now. I have subbed for a year on both accounts.

That is my investment to this game. when those subs come up for renewal I will evaluate my time playing this game and see if its worth continuing. to date I have built up my own company, community and settlement. I have helped crowdforge new ideas into the game and helped bug report many features. I have had fun and I have met new people I now consider friends.

You can however not sub, not play, not be a part the community, and simply wait till the game is more polished. That's your choice and right as a consumer.

Is it wrong? depends on your view.
Is it a mistake? again depends on your view.
Quijenoth Starkiller Viceroy of Callambea
Company Leader of Beyond the Grave - www.beyond-pfo.com
Crafting Planner
Tyncale
Lokai, I think one thing that GW will want to avoid at all cost is that everybody is entrenched with no dynamics in the World. However, that is something that should be avoided at all times, by all these type of games, not just because a bunch of veterans has been paying for access for 2 years already. If game mechanics allow for such entrenchment, then it does not matter when you open up the gates to everyone: it will happen anyway in the first year of release by those most actively playing, so you will end up with the same entrenchment and problems for new players.

So the solution to this, for *every* MMO out there, is to implement mechanics that will promote change and the possibility for new players to carve out their own cut, if only temporarily: just as the powerblocks that you see now are temporary. A themepark like WoW does this by resetting Gear with each expansion: even a game like Eve, that has huge powerblocks, allows for dynamics changes in the world. Do not forget that PFO allows for adding new Hexes very easily to the Landmass. So the world can never really get "full". Join a powerblock first: then fronteer your own town on the border with some backup from allies. You could even wage War on that powerblock that took you in, if you are annoyed by the fact that they have been around too long. smile

I would like to add that you can have a viable tier 2 Archer in 2 weeks, and a viable "Veteran" Tier 3 Archer that delivers a mighty punch in 11 months. In Tier 2 you are already very powerful and this is considered the phase where most players will be at any point in time, while Tier 3 is pretty much the top of the power-curve for your character: after that most progress for your character will be min-maxing a few more points here and there, or go sideways and diversify, and adding more roles/misc skills to your character.
Regalo Harnoncourt, Leader of the River Kingdoms Trading Company, High Council of Callambea.
This is the character that I am playing almost 100% of the time. (Tyncale is my Sage/Mage)
Caldeathe Baequiannia
One note. All the best spots can't be taken up in EE, because we only get to play on about 30% of the map right now.
To reach me, email d20rpg@gmail.com
Lhan
I am not paying 15 quid a month for the Devs to make and debug their game; I am paying it for them to make our game.

The feed back loop between developers and players (crowdforging) really does work. Is this going to be a game exactly to my personal tastes? No, but I have a feeling the server would be a lot lonelier if it were. It is going to be a game in which the community has had a strong voice in the forging of concepts and implementation, however. Quite apart from the sandbox nature of PFO, this is what has kept me subbed and will do so in future. The devs listen. They may not always agree with the players on the solutions, but they do deal with the problems, and considering there is such a small team of them, they do so pretty quickly.

I know of no other game in which one can invest both time/money and creativity. PFO is it. That is enough to make it work for me. YMMV.
Tagnar
A large part of the sub fee is being able to contribute to the development in the game. The biggest draw for me is the vision the developers have and how they communicate with the player base so openly and constantly. I have posted my feelings and ideas on different subjects and seen changes made to the game that were directly impacted by discussions I began. There is nothing more encouraging than posting a bug report/game issue and receiving a follow up from Ryan Dancey CEO of Goblinworks. There is just so much more here than a game. It is a subscription fee to be a part of a games development and that isn't just a tagline for a beta. It really does feel like OUR game.

As far as the issue of veterans claiming everything and out competing new players who join that is a very poor description of what is happening. We are currently playing on a very small portion of a world that will continue to expand for a long time. There will always be plenty of room to create settlements and holdings in the world for new companies not to mention the ability to take these places away from the veterans. It takes about a months xp if focused to be able to compete on the same level. Lets face it us veterans will not have as streamlined character as we would like as things are changing and some of our spent xp will not be the most efficient expenditure. Something that seems OP now may no longer be optimal later. We will be more diversified for sure but that doesn't make us more powerful. ("Wait you ranked up agile feet to 5? Wow what a noob. Everyone knows its not worth the xp and cost of ammo when you can just use boots of the Effrit…."smile

More importantly haven't you ever played a game filled with well developled NPCs where it seemed like they made the world come alive? Haven't you ever wished for just a bit more from them? How about a lot more? Veteran players are going to be akin to the NPCs fleshing out a populated world for the new players and providing these players with a living thriving world. It won't even take long for these new players to transition from the new player to a seasoned player carving out their own destiny into the world which will only enrich the story base for the new batch of new players coming along after.
Tagnar, Ironbreaker of Forgeholm
High Priest of Abadar
Caldeathe Baequiannia
The hope of everyone was that lots of people would be interested and it would allow them to hire more team to produce the finished game faster. Since that hasn't happened, it means things will happen more slowly. A silver lining to that is that those of us in now will have a longer time to test and make suggestions, and there will be more room for finding the exact mix of mechanics that makes the game great.

Every game is unique, and PFO is facing challenges unique to it. By the same token, it has an opportunity to build something that is unique to the vision of the developers and the community. I can think of hundreds of worse ways to waste $15.00 a month.

Embracing a group in the game, and making friends, or bringing your own friends, makes the game into a social activity that is already a way better deal than a pizza-a-month or single meal at a mediocre restaurant. And it gets better every few weeks.
To reach me, email d20rpg@gmail.com
Dranemra
I understand how the die-hard crowdfunders will defend this game. As the original poster, I've been playing RPGs and MMOs since 386s were high tech with dial-up modems.
What I see isn't very impressive: A graphics engine that looks to be about 2 decades behind modern (even free-to-play) games. A combat system that's easily a decade below modern games. There's no combat log, I can't see who's hitting me, or who I'm hitting for that matter. I was killed and I don't know how.

You start out as a basic commoner. You have no skills, your stats are 10 across the board. You start off with a simple jerkin & a club… and absolutely no clue where to go from there.
If you go in the right direction, you find a small camp where you will find trainers that will train you in a class - provided that you go out and do a particular quest for them. Easy enough I suppose, only the starter zone is so full of new players, good luck trying to find the mobs you are sent out to defeat.

NPCs: There is no way to distinguish an interactable NPC from a guard that won't talk to you. They don't glow, don't have anything above their heads indicating they are a shop, or quest giver, or anything.
Shopkeepers apparently have nothing better to do than stand in front of their shop and hope you figure out that you can interact with them.

Map: The map is hex-based and more than once, I was referred to go to Hex # to find this item or creature. With little to no reference to where I was currently, again, I had no idea where to go or what to do. There was no pointers or quest guides you see in most other MMOs or RPGs.

This is suppose to be a living, breathing environment, yet the NPCs and mobs pretty much just stand around and do nothing. As a reported port of the RPG, it is strongly lacking in the basics of the campaign setting - let alone no where near proper character generation.

I understand that people are excited about the sandbox possibilities, none of which I've been able to figure out yet - probably cause I'm still in 'Training XP' mode. I've played Starbound and Trove for that same reason. Trion as a Korean port that has sandbox features, and this game is far from anything close to competing with these products.
Bringslite
Thanks to all that offer an outside opinion. Whether good or bad, I think that they are vital and I think that GW agrees.

Direct opinion from "outside" the current fan base is like a map to a buried treasure. The treasure is there, waiting for you. GW just needs to read the map and do what they can to get closer to it. I honestly think that they are. What we sometimes forget, and what people "outside" don't seem to grasp is that the Dev team is pretty small. Changes take time and also slow (dramatically) the pace of pre planned development.

They did drop the "box" fee, announced it and saw an immediate (relatively) jump in numbers grabbing the free trial. That is CROWDFORGING from both inside AND outside. Better graphics, dungeons, a complete wipe, etc… are either not possible fast enough or would cause more problems than positive results.

What we don't know is the bottom line. We haven't any idea what GW can afford to do with all of the common denominators of suggestions and reasons that more are not jumping into the game. Lots of great suggestions and deal breakers have been explained, again inside and outside.

Can a company run a third kickstarter? Something like a "Help GW get to a F2P until OE" thing?

What about more interesting promotions?
*One year's subscription gets you a Destiny's Twin.
*A new Landrush for new player groups that subscribe.
*Increase the free trial to 30 days.
*A "Fast Track" limited time offer of xp from January 1, 2015 for one year's subscription.

Facing reality, I feel like I would rather let go of any jealousy over any of those things being rewarded to new people than have none of those things myself because the lights are turned off.

Only two things can ensure this game's survival.
1. Priority one is population. Whether for GW income or just to keep current players interested in staying.
2. Priority two is TIME. The lights need to stay on until a critical mass of people agree what Minimum Viable Product is and subscribe.
Virtute et Armis
-Unknown
Wyborn Cathmor
Dranemra
I understand how the die-hard crowdfunders will defend this game. As the original poster, I've been playing RPGs and MMOs since 386s were high tech with dial-up modems.
What I see isn't very impressive: A graphics engine that looks to be about 2 decades behind modern (even free-to-play) games. A combat system that's easily a decade below modern games. There's no combat log, I can't see who's hitting me, or who I'm hitting for that matter. I was killed and I don't know how.

Are the graphics dated? Yeah. But I like the art style they have went with. I like the way the world looks. I am looking forward tot he characters having a bit more customization but overall I am happy with where they are going. I also like the combat. No, there are no combat logs but I can usually figure out who/what killed me. It isn't that hard if you pay attention. And for those times that someone gets the drop on you and kills you before you know what happened… that happens and it should happen.

You start out as a basic commoner. You have no skills, your stats are 10 across the board. You start off with a simple jerkin & a club… and absolutely no clue where to go from there.
If you go in the right direction, you find a small camp where you will find trainers that will train you in a class - provided that you go out and do a particular quest for them. Easy enough I suppose, only the starter zone is so full of new players, good luck trying to find the mobs you are sent out to defeat.

You start as a blank slate and can do whatever you want. Figuring out where to go is not difficult and I love that one of your complaints is that there are too many new players. Isn't that a good thing? I have made a couple of throw away 1,000xp alts to test the new starter area and had no problems though I will admit that the order of operations for the tutorial quests is not intuitive.

I also had no problem fighting the relevant mobs for the trainers… though I could have simply been luckier than you.

NPCs: There is no way to distinguish an interactable NPC from a guard that won't talk to you. They don't glow, don't have anything above their heads indicating they are a shop, or quest giver, or anything.
Shopkeepers apparently have nothing better to do than stand in front of their shop and hope you figure out that you can interact with them.

The NPC's really aren't important. Yes, we need them to train but finding the trainers is not hard. They show up on the map. As for not glowing or having weird symbols above their heads, thank Goblinworks for that. I do not need exclamation points and question marks or pillars of light or a line drawn from me to my objective. It's all overdone wasted crap that makes it so you do not have to actually learn anything about what you are doing. I like the throw back to older games where I actually have to learn the terrain and get the lay of the land to know whats going on.

And what Shopkeepers? There are no shopkeepers. Unless you are talking about player merchants as players are the only folk you can buy and sell from/with. If you want to buy/sell something see a player, not an NPC and thank Goblinworks for that too!

Map: The map is hex-based and more than once, I was referred to go to Hex # to find this item or creature. With little to no reference to where I was currently, again, I had no idea where to go or what to do. There was no pointers or quest guides you see in most other MMOs or RPGs.

Yes, the map is hex-based. If someone gives you a hex location and you do not understand it ask them to elaborate. Human interaction, ain't it grand? Or, I guess they could do like every other game on the current market and make the game tell you exactly where to go without any thought process or need for social interaction… yeah, that would be great. /sarcasam

This is suppose to be a living, breathing environment, yet the NPCs and mobs pretty much just stand around and do nothing. As a reported port of the RPG, it is strongly lacking in the basics of the campaign setting - let alone no where near proper character generation.

The mobs are static. It sucks. We have suggested that they not be. This has not been implemented yet. Conversely the player population is a living, breathing part of the environment and honestly it is the players that are the real adversaries, not the mobs. Bottom line is WE are the main content of the game. It is the socioeconomic aspect of the game that is the real meat of what the game is and will become.

Oh, and the game is not a port of the table top game. It is inspired by, difference. Character generation/creation is not where it needs to be. Not enough customization at all right now. This is, to my understanding, something that will be updated as they add new races and such.

I understand that people are excited about the sandbox possibilities, none of which I've been able to figure out yet - probably cause I'm still in 'Training XP' mode. I've played Starbound and Trove for that same reason. Trion as a Korean port that has sandbox features, and this game is far from anything close to competing with these products.

Yes, it is a sandbox. You can go do whatever you want. Do we have all of the tools yet that they want us to have? Nope. But they are working on getting them to us.
Wyborn Cathmor of Keeper's Pass
"The first gift you ever receive is your family. We all grow from the seeds of our parents' plant."
-Parables of Erastil
Daeglin
The game is worth it to me. The other sandbox games out right now I've either tried and don't like, or have a mechanic or theme I just don't want in a game I want to spend a lot of time in. The only alternative design I enjoy is EVE, and I prefer fantasy to scifi. There are other games on the horizon that may have potenential but I can't play them now, they may not be playable for years, and quite frankly only one has design elements that appeal to me as strongly as the plans for PFO. So like others, I've doubled down for a year which drops my cost per month as well.
Good… Bad… I'm the guy with the bow.
 
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