SWTOR F2P: Caution, Diatribe Ahead

As promised, key members of our team are going to give their thoughts on today’s announcement. First cab off the rank: Simon Potter.
There’s a time for being charitable and understanding and there’s a time to just say what you think… guess which this is?
Clue… I am angry, people.

In my humble opinion, F2P isn’t the news although I welcome the change, if it’s done right. 

Bioware have plenty of good examples to follow and SWTOR should enjoy the growth and ongoing success of DCUO and LotRO. If they screw it up, they only have themselves to blame.

What really burns my brisket about this announcement is the mealy mouthed obfuscation from various spokespeople regarding this inevitable model shift. While they were just following orders, it’s perfectly clear that the weasel words were to cloud the issue so this announcement could be married to the EA earnings call yesterday. Perhaps they value their shareholders opinion and good wishes more than players? I think it’s a distinct possibility.

All the while BioWare maintain the ‘if we don’t talk about it, then no one will notice’, which I will be honest is really beginning to grate. Since BioWare have fired most of their community team, it’s no surprise that their communication has gone from uneven to non-existent to insulting. However at least one person at EA is honest, if not with player then with the investors. In the earnings call Frank Gibeau, President, EA Labels, referred to SWTOR as ‘a miss’. Well, that puts things in perspective, doesn’t it?

To sum things up, if BioWare expect to keep the sudden influx of new and returning players informed, they will need to lift their community communication dramatically and perhaps try to be a little more honest and open. Too much spin makes people dizzy and nauseous.

Now that I’ve got that out of my system, let me assure you I still love SWTOR and am looking forward to the upcoming announced content, assuming we ever see it. After all they’ve promised a number of things that have yet to materialise. The game is only just beginning to hit its stride and I’m certain it will be a longterm survivor.

I still hate Taris though. 

Comments

  1. DFTGamer says:

    I really don’t see why anyone is shocked at this announcement, I mean really I don’t see any new game coming into the market lasting as a subscription based game unless they can keep up the significant monthly release required to maintain a $15 per month price or can capture a significant market share in the first few weeks with some kind of hook.
    Terra online already has an established market in Korea and so the western market is secondary and only needs to really maintain the overheads but has captured enough of a market with it’s action based combat.
    Secret world is really quite ballsy trying to have both the in game shop and the subscription so I see that joining SWTOR before the end of their first year.
    The only issue here is how money grubbing EA is going to be locking off content for F2P customers and how carefully they are with current/former subscribers because I can see altaholics like myself raising hell if we login under the F2P system and half our characters are greyed out.

  2. Asher lenCORP Moore says:

    your a off the mark about bioware not talking about certain things. The real reason is they are legally not allowed as anything they say that is negative can effect the stock price off EA. The Securities and Exchange Commission in the USA has strict guidelines and regulations about how publicly listed companies can release information that has direct ties to revenue or stock price. This is why its always only talked about by EA senior exec’s and in investor calls where they can provide all the information required to make an informed decision about weather they keep or sell there holdings. 

  3. davyandrews247 says:

    I have enjoyed playing SWTOR very much but sadly I have become bored with the game and its lack of variation in content. Therefore I have cancelled my subscription and I’m off to give Guild Wars 2 a shot instead. I will come back from time to time to check on how things are going as I can do that easily at no cost now, so who knows what will happen down the road. Best of luck to those staying with it.

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