I Have Been Wondering For Years

…why this is not a standard business model. Seriously, players will pay you to play your game and then pay you more not to play (portions of) your game.

Counter-thought: the majority of your game has not endorsed RMT. You only need a small minority to support a nigh-endless stream of sales. With 0.1% of the planet playing WoW, you only need about 0.001% of the planet wanting to buy gold to have more than enough customers. How much of your playerbase do you lose by endorsing RMT? Noted effects of “we sell gold” servers and “no RMT” servers? I imagine that, oddly enough, people will play on no-RMT servers and still want to buy gold, despite that being a legal option on the server next door.

: Zubon

8 thoughts on “I Have Been Wondering For Years”

  1. The answer to ‘How much of the playerbase would be lost’ is behind the more common reasons why people hate RMT.

    One is that some people can’t afford it. That’s not going to drive away a noticable portion of your populace unless you pull a WoW and design all new content based around the assumption that the majority of your players are either hardcore or buy money. Even then, they’ll play until they hit that wall.

    The major backlash comes from “hardcore” players who will feel cheated when they lose their superiority over casual players. They’re already display their jealousy of players with out-of-game lives with their arrogance. As such, they’re adamant that these people be found inferior in what they consider their playing field.

    Changing the use of currency in the game would also limit the enmity towards RMT. Players of Guild Wars have very little hatred of RMT because anything that can’t be acquired in under a month is either a diminuitive increase in stats, or has no superior qualities except appearance.

    In short, company-run RMT shouldn’t be a problem for any game not catering exclusively to hardcore gamers (and the only problem there is jealousy of some players). It should, however, be optional. If it is either a problem or a necessity, your game is sadistic.

  2. The reason game companies don’t do isn’t because they don’t want to tap the market or are afraid of customer backlash. They do it because of the legal issues. There’s all sorts of property issues already popping up about whether this stuff legally counts as property, and with it all sorts of crazy laws and rights and BS that game companies don’t want to be responsible for.

    If they sell currency, that’s basically an endorsement that yes, game currency has value. Since you can make currency in game through farming, that means it is a sort of income. All income is taxable. All of a sudden we have tax laws infringing on our games, yet another thing game companies do not want to deal with.

  3. I agree with the Dan’s post – I really don’t see why I can’t send Sony $20 and they give me some epic item that I don’t feel like camping? If I had $20 that I wanted to spend on the game rather than something else, that is. Myself, I can’t see me doing it, so I’d be there camping it or whatever, with the other people similar minded. Others though, with more available cash than time, could write a big check to Sony and POOF, they are super shiny.

    Perhaps they lose a few months of subscription time (since instead of camping it, I have it), but they would far gain on cash outlay unless their pricing model is nuts, plus have less bandwith expenses.

    The only way to kill the market is to take over the market and do it better. The market could be destroyed in days if they did it right.

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  5. How on earth does this work in a PvP game? If spending money would give you an advantage, then the game would become hardcore-spending only; if it didn’t, then that would suggest that ingame items had no value and you might as well play something totally transient like Counterstrike. Or if you want a massively multiplayer online game based around real money, poker.

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