9 thoughts on “EQ2 leads the way towards a more flexible subscription model

  1. Pingback: Interesting Emails From SOE «

  2. Bah, I don’t rate a link for getting the news out? ;)

    Reactions on Syp’s & Tobold’s blogs were less than positive. Me, I think it’s a good idea even if it’s not perfect — and it’s worth thinking about the target audience before bitching about it (as many commenters obviously didn’t. :D).

    I just know that if I could spend less-than-sub for limited playtime, I’d almost certainly pick up LOTRO, EVE, and Fallen Earth at the very least. I also know that I’m not going to pick any of those up if I have to pay $15 a month when I might not end up logging into them at all (or worse, feel obligated to log in, which is sort of counter game-fun).

    • In this case, I actually found out when I got the email myself is the thing. What I was impressed by is that they’d obviously spent some time thinking about who might want to use it, and also the initial email was very very clear. It was really clear to me on scanning it exactly what was on offer, and how much, and how to take up the offer.

      The trouble with clever sub ideas is that we can all think up cunning new subscriptions that would let us personally pay less. But no game is going to introduce anything that lets people pay less unless it also results in other people paying more. I mean, say WoW introduced a half rate sub that let you play 10 hours per week — whenever we went through a quiet period, everyone would switch to that sub.

      • Aye, but I think this one is clever — it’s really just an inducement to come back. If all they get off someone is that $5 it’s more than they’d have got if that person didn’t come back at all. And if the person resubs fully, then it’s all win.

        It’s not to everyone’s liking, but it’s certainly good marketing. IMO etc etc.

  3. at first i didn’t like the sound of that (5$ for 3 days..) but its really good for casuals or those reasons that were listed. It doesn’t hurt so much when it’s 5$ and not 15$ when you’re not playing so frequently

  4. You are right, Spinks, their goal is to get people who aren’t currently paying to pay a bit more. Offering too flexible of an option means that some people currently paying full price would just pay less if it fit their needs.

    The one big downside I see to this is that it might put a lot more pressure on social relationships. If your friend is only going to be on for the weekend (for example), they might try to pressure their friends into playing for a lot more than they want to that weekend rather than ponying up more cash for a longer play session. “C’mon, let’s go run this instance I need for the quests before my time runs out late tonight!”

    What’s kind of funny about all this is that this is similar to how M59’s payment structure was set up for a long time at 3DO. It was $2.49 per day, but you were only charged a maximum of 3 days per week. The upshot was that if you just played all the time you’d spend $30/month. But the pricing was a lot more flexible….

    The story I’ve heard was that this system was intended to “trick” people into paying more per month than the original $9.95/month they charged. I wonder if Sony is hoping some people don’t think about it and sign up for four weekends in a month…. ;)

  5. I know several people who would be intrested in a cheaper alternative to a full resub to try out new features and so on.

    EQ2 has introduced a few new features, improved leveling and so on recently? Nice way to try those.

    I could well see myself taking a break from WoW and then resubbing one weekend to try out Cata for example. I certainly know 5 or 6 folk who are looking intrested at LFD tool and hints about Cata but dont want to spring for a full months play.

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