Posted tagged ‘MMORPG’

Paying for Advantages–Re: Tobold

May 30, 2011

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This is going to be a response to Tobold’s article “MMORPGs are too cheap”.

Tobold claims, as the title suggests, that MMO’s aren’t charging as much as they should be. His defense of this stance is that the ‘average American’ spends around $58 per month on hobbies, and that MMOs only charge about $15, maybe $40 if there was an expansion that month. He then goes on to say that people respond negatively even to the very idea of paying more, such as in a cash shop where the player can purchase items.

If you’ve been following Tobold for a while you’ll see that recently he’s been battling for the acceptance of paying for advantages in game. He says that it’s not that big a deal, and that it’s youthful naivete that prevents us opponents of the idea from accepting what is obviously right. He believes his age has brought with it the wisdom to know that it’s alright to charge more for MMOs, and to sell items that give you an advantage inside.

He also likens MMOs to stamp collecting, and says that no stamp collector would be angry if another guy spent more money, and thus had a better stamp collection, so why should we care if someone spends more and has a better MMO experience. He then says, and I quote: “The whole argument against people spending money on MMORPGs has a whiff of communism. Everybody should be equal, and nobody should be allowed to stand out through money, even if he worked hard to get that money.”

BULLSHIT. First of all, anyone NOT currently living in the cold war would understand that if it worked out perfectly, Communism is an amazing way to run a country. The problem with Communism is that it NEVER works out perfectly, because people are greedy and evil. Knowing that, Communism is a stupid idea because it just can’t happen right. That said, of course people who have worked for more money should be able to spend it and have an advantage, however, all of that should be IN GAME. What you did outside of the game makes no difference, you want money and power inside the game world? Work for it like everyone else. Excel and become ‘the man’ if you can, but you don’t get to cut in front of the line because you have more real life money.

Why not? Because let’s not forget what an MMORPG is. It’s a virtual WORLD. One that humans created and one that has the ability to be far more fair than the real world. Why would we allow, if we can help it, the corruption and evil that infests our normal lives to seep into the one escape we have? That’s not how it works, because YOU are not YOUR CHARACTER. If you enter this world, and shoot past everyone else in skill or luck and become massively wealthy, you should be able to use that to gain status or power in the game, but you shouldn’t be declared Governor of California because you have a level 85 Shaman with more gold than the entirety of the rest of the server. Just the same the Governor of California shouldn’t be able to start playing my game tomorrow, and start bitch slapping me that very same day, even though I’ve put in time and effort. That’s got a very totalitarian feel to it if you ask me.

The only people who say that ‘money can’t make you happy’ or ‘MMORPGs cost too little’ are the people that HAVE the money to spend. I’m a struggling college student with a wife and debt. I’m LUCKY that I can afford to pay for a $15 sub a month for both me and my wife. Most of my computer equipment comes from my time in the Navy too, so it’s not like I’m spending much on my hobby. In fact, according to receipts, I spend about $40 a month on hobbies. That includes two subscription fees, one for me and one for my wife, and $10 for whatever comes up. So no Tobold, MMORPGs don’t cost too little, and if you REALLY want to just ‘waste’ your money as you claim in your blog, then I’ll send you my address and you can start just sending me the extra you’ve got.

Until then, try not to ruin my hobby just because you no longer want to put in the work.

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Confessions of an EVE Noob

June 30, 2010

EVEOnline1

I haven’t put too much time into EVE yet. According to Raptr it’s only been 5 hours, so I’m not going to comment on my overall view of the game obviously. I am however going to mention a few things that I like, and a few things that I dislike.

First off the game is as beautiful as ever, though I’m not sure whether I like the graphics of EVE or Star Trek Online better. Obviously I love the SIZE of the EVE space compared to STO and it’s instanced bits, though I’m sure I’ll be singing a different tune when I have a four hour flight sometime down the line.

I like that they have a tutorial now (the last time I played, shortly after it came out, it didn’t). I’d prefer it if the tutorial were scripted and instanced, just so I they could make sure everything happened as it should, and the tutorial could react to unexpected things, like losing your ship on the third military career mission. I was left sitting there wondering what to do. Do I fly back to the base? Can I come back for my stuff? I figured it out, but it would have been nice for the game to tell me.

The reason I died, and a major problem with my own way of thinking, was that I was too close to my enemies. I knew guns in EVE had optimal ranges, so I checked them out. ~15km for my guns. I figured that meant that 15km was good, and anything closer was better, like a handgun. That is not the case though. Apparently when they say 15km for optimal range, you better be at 15km or as close to that as you can get! Once I found this out and bought a ship upgrade I was nearly unstoppable for the rest of the military career tutorial.

The music is another thing I wanted to mention. I don’t normally notice music in games, and I don’t normally like anything techno-ish. That said, I LOVE the EVE Online combat music. As soon as I warped into an area I needed to clear of pirates the music kicked on and I was blasted with music that got my heart pumping, even if the actual action wasn’t all that fast paced or exciting.

I’ve applied to EVE University, but apparently the interview que is 7-10 days, so it’s going to be a while before I can comment on that. In the meantime I plan to finish the tutorials, figure out EVEMon, and figure out what I need to do to eventually fly something that shoots out drones or fighter jets or something like that. I want to look like an ant hill just exploded when I attack something.

For race I picked the Amarr, simply because they seemed the coolest. Their crazy strict society and willingness to make everyone their slaves appealed to me, even if in game I’ll probably just be avoiding fights and running for a long time.