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Kayin Amoh

So kid, you wanna be the best at this game? Let me tell you how...

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Stuff like this baffles me. How is there any satisfaction in winning a game you have thrown money or cheats at? Do they delude themselves and try to fake the joy? 

 

I even wonder if it's a case of South Park Warcraft guy where it's just some miserable troll paying for the sick joy of spoiling the game for others.

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I'm a big mobile gamer and i do drop the odd 99p here and there especially since i have xbox game pass ultimate and never seem to be buying a top tier game at £40 any more.

 

But this is the same pretty much in any mobile game that has a competitive aspect.

 

Star Wars Galaxy Of Heroes has full guilds of Whales (P2P) which dominate the majority of the upper leaderboards, and Whales are consistent in both Marvel's Contest Of Champions & Marvel's Future Fight.

 

Future Fight literally throws offers at you as you move through each menu screen, and requires you to accept that you wont get the offer again unless it pops up (e.g. its not in the shop) but wait its past 1am and there it is again. 

 

Digimon ReArise offers a beginners pack at £19.99 which gives you things like EXP & Currency boosts which again is wanting you to drop Currency as opposed to grind from it.

 

As i said i do spend money which is mostly on refilling my energy on Dragonball Z Dokkan Battle because i'd sooner pay 99p and carry on grinding for the items then wait 8 hours plus to do it again. 

 

I'm not buying a character at max that's just come out for £99 like people do in SWGOH & i'm not buying a booster pack for £20 like in DRA but i am taking advantage of the P2P system but at a level that suits me. 

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The gaming expenditure threads have pretty much ensured that I don’t fall into F2P traps, because I’d rather list my daft full-price game purchases than several dozen microtransactions. I understand that it’s a difficult balancing act (don’t rip players off but don’t be too generous) but when you’re regularly at the mercy of a cooldown timer or tedious grind you simply end up losing interest...

 

In any case, I’m probably never going to buy my way up a leaderboard...

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The studio I work at has released a couple of F2P mobile games, and although we make sure we balance them to be fun (hopefully) for players who don't pay anything, there are a hardcore group of whales who spend ridiculous amounts on them. I think the highest spender is approaching £50k. Our analytics also let us know how much time people spend playing, and there's a really strong correlation between people who pay loads and people who play loads. I'd always assumed it'd be the other way round, that people would be paying to make sure they didn't have to play for hours a day, but I think what must happen is that if someone with more money than sense really likes the game, they spend an obscene amount of money to get to the top tier/end game content really quickly. And then they put about ten hours a day into it after that.

 

I don't really have a point here, I guess. Just an observation. Though if most F2P games follow that pattern, I'd guess that you'd still end up with that one unbeatable guy on your server. He'd just be playing non-stop rather than spending money and also playing non-stop.

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5 minutes ago, Scribblor said:

I think the highest spender is approaching £50k

Do you, or your company, worry about this? Are you concerned at the very real possibility that this person could be ruining their life running up massive debts to play a videogame?

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I certainly do, yes. I didn't work on either of these two games (they were released years ago, and I've only recently joined), and the company pivoted away from F2P before I joined. We only support one of them these days, although that's the one with the big spender. I believe the other was work for hire. 

 

So I don't feel personally responsible for them, but I do find it distasteful. At the same time, I'm also kind of conflicted: I've played and enjoyed F2P games, like Hearthstone. I've spent a bit of money on them, but not even close to the cost of a console game. Do I think Hearthstone is problematic because someone could spend £50k on it? I'm not sure. It's something to think about, though I'd hesitate to say F2P games should be banned. If you go down that route, you should ban TCGs, CCGs, baseball cards/football stickers, gambling in all forms... But yes, the F2P thing was certainly something that gave me pause before accepting the job offer.

 

As for the company as a whole - which I guess means the directors and investors really - I'm not sure. As I say, we've pivoted away from F2P, which suggests it wasn't something we wanted to be involved with long term. But we do continue to support the game, so it's clearly not all that distasteful to the company. I haven't had a conversation with the directors about it.

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Remember that app that put a diamond logo on your home screen for like £1000? 
 

Money spent should be proportional. I probably spent about £15-20 on Pokemon Go over the time we played it. That I was fine with. Enjoyed it actually, no buyer’s remorse.

 

With whales, those people who spend what we consider a disproportionate amount, there is also the relative factor of the importance of money. What if money is no object to them? It may be proportional for them. Unfortunately the grey area is that as we know, people spend a lot even relative to their income as they do on addictive fruit machines. That is rather sad, and a problem that ends up having a negative effect on society for the many and scrapes in a disproportionate award for the few. 
 

The founders of Supercell have been the country’s highest earners for several years in a row, though admittedly they pay at least half of it back to the state in tax.

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