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rousuttIconIt's an upgrade03:38 25.03.15 

 Reps: 180

#5087, 85 Posts


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The Old Republic's draconian restrictions leverage player frustration to incite a purchase. Not good. If you're looking to familiarise players with a store, then Guild Wars 2's tactic of gifting XP boosts and items provides a much better experience. There is something to be said for one-off payments that unlock everything. Players put off by the complications juggling ongoing micropayments can instead just buy the Guild Wars 2 game in an ordinary way. In Card Hunter, you can play a flat $20 fee and unlock all of the missions. This lets players treat the free-to-play element as a demo, and still gives players that don't want to spend a big lump sum a way to play for less money. In short: Contrived limits like the The Old Republic's give new players a handicapped experience, which makes it unlikely they'll stick around, especially when the competition includes Guild Wars 2 like Rift and Lord of the Rings Online. These offer a huge amount of playable content without charging for basic features. Account Buffs Buffs give a temporary percentage increase in the amount of gold, XP, or other desirables that the player can earn through regular play. It's another example of microtransactions allowing players to pay to reduce the time spent between rewards. Unlike energy, though, buffs are a bonus applied to someone who pays, not a penalty against someone who doesn't. That's a key difference in their philosophy that, for the most part, stops them being exploitative. For them to work, it requires a careful balancing of item prices and levelling progress. There's a strange psychology here. If a Guild Wars 2 game is enjoyable, then a lengthy spell between rewards shouldn't be a problem. But if progression and upgrades are built into the DNA of a Guild Wars 2 game, having to wait too long for them can feel frustrating. In Guild Wars 2 games like Guild Wars, progression is swift to begin with, but slows greatly as you advance. This deliberately plays on impatience to incite a purchase, and is a classic gw2bank example of Guild Wars 2 game design serving a monetisation system rather than the player. If a Guild Wars 2 game is perceived as a grind, then a buff becomes a requirement rather than a bonus. It's not just currency that can be boosted. In the case of Card Hunter, your account subscription provides you with an extra piece of loot for every quest you complete. It's an upgrade that neatly sidesteps the balance problem. It doesn't feel like a significant loss compared to the 2-4 rewards you get in regular play, but a guaranteed rarity makes for a nice bonus for those who do subscribe. In short: In free-to-play Guild Wars 2 games, XP boost items can be symptomatic of an overly sluggish levelling curve, but for patient players there may never need to go near account buffs. If a Guild Wars 2 game is entertaining enough, putting a lot of time into it shouldn't feel like a chore. Mini-DLC Blurring the line between microtransaction and full-fat DLC are these purchasable packs of extras and bonuses.
 


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