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jnohd 08-10-2012 08:49 AM

Learn from other Hybrid MMOs - Z-store change requests
The stipend of 400 Zen simply isn't enough. Most of the things I've gotten for my subscription are now available on the Z-store and priced to the point I am reaching the apex of my subscription's value. The monthly stipend was fine back when the C-store was not as necessary to the game, but now? Now I would like to have what some other, successful Hybrid models are doing and apply it here.

For starters, ditch the stipend, and apply a flat Zen discount in the store. In the F2P/Hybrids I am playing, when this is a policy, I actually buy more when I'm subscribed and go so far as to subscribe once in a while when I see some new bundles or items I like hit the store, and especially when I see a sale in the store! In APB:Reloaded, for example, I have jumped into their cash store, subscribed for the discount, and bought weapons and car kits (like our ships and ship skins), loaded up on bunches of things, all during a sale. The subscriber and sale discounts stacked, and Gamers First got gobs more of my money than PWE ever has *PLUS* I felt good about it, I felt like I got me a good deal. With the 400-Zen stipend I'm more likely to just buy the minimum Zen needed to get something, and I'm probably going to curse the company under my breath for not quite giving me enough to buy what I wanted... :D

Next up, add 1 month, 3 month, 1 year, and lifetime gold account upgrades (non-recurring) to the Z-store. See above for why, and below for how this benefits both PWE and the player.

Thirdly, GIVE US A SHOPPING CART! Seriously, the C/Z-store is just not designed right in this regard. Let us load up a shopping cart with items. Let us delete and add to this cart as we decide how much we'd like to spend (or save). Apply discounts to the cart! For example - if a f2p player decides he wants the Awesome Ship from the last round of Z-store additions, AND waits until there is a 20% discount on all things not brand new, AND adds a 1-month-of-premium to his cart, apply the premium discount PLUS the sale discount to that order in total (but not to the premium, obviously). Then watch as we load up our carts with more than we would have under the current system.

Lastly, breakout character and account-wide items at separate rates. Not all of us want a ship for all our characters, and wont buy it just because why spend that much for an Escort for my Tac my Eng and Sci will never touch? Add a secondary price, about 2/3 that of an Account-wide unlock and you'll sell more, we'll save more, win-win.

thecosmic1 08-10-2012 08:52 AM

It's actually 500 Zen, not 400. :)

As far as not having enough, I routinely earn around 3,000 Zen per month between playing and my Stipend - meaning I get everything I want from the C-Store each month for free. I haven't purchased any CP/Zen from Cryptic for 7 months and still have 16,000 Zen on my account.

Every single day I earn over 17,000 Dilithium playing 2-2.5 hours per day. It's really not that difficult to do.

jnohd 08-10-2012 09:30 AM

I didn't say it was difficult, merely expressed I no longer feel it has the value it used to. I guess this is born more out of sitting down with other hybrid games and feeling like I got my money's worth when I visit their cash stores, vrs feeling like this one doesnt offer a good value any more.

That and, for me at least, between work, other entertainment options, and maintaining the Fleet's Starbase/recruiting, I just don't have the time to spread between Fleet Marks, Dilithium, and EDCs/Prototypes anymore. :rolleyes:

thecosmic1 08-10-2012 09:49 AM

I guess from my standpoint out of all the Hybrid FTP games I play (Conan, LotRO, DCUO, CoH, and so on) none of them makes it easier to buy store things then STO does. Just making 8,000 Dilithium per day is fairly easy and will earn you around 1,200 Zen per month; and there's many ways to make Dilithum: Dailies, PvP, Foundry, DOFFs, Fleet Actions, Special Events, etc. I've never played any of my other Hybrid FTP games and been able to buy $30-$50.00 worth of goods from the store in just a month of playing. I do that in STO every month.

And yes, all games get grindy at end-game. Grinding out 100 Raids for purple gear in WoW is no more fun then grinding out 100 STFs in STO. But to my mind there are so many games out there to play that when one starts to feel grindy I just take a break and play one of the others. I think, at least for most people, that it's foolish to think that they'll never want to play more then 1 game in their life. No game can produce enough content for that to every happen, IMO. If it starts to feel like work then take a break and play something else.

jnohd 08-10-2012 10:34 AM

I think you have missed the points.
1. I am a paid subscriber. Based on the amount I have paid and the amount I could have paid to get (close) to the same place by being F2P, I feel the cash value of my account has reached its limit. I am suggesting ways to adjust this. "The cash out no longer matches the value back," NOT "how do I make more Z-points."

2. I have listed a handful of things I found that are slightly better or more interesting from another cash store, and am mentioning them here as constructive suggestions on how to improve this one. Of course there are things that are worse elsewhere. Here are some things I liked else where, please consider them.

While I appreciate your defense of this game, I'm not attacking it, nor am I looking for alternatives to making Zen. Your replies indicate that you are happily making 1200 Zen (including the free 500 from gold membership) a month, I am not discussing what I get from effort. I am discussing what I get from my subscription fee. I don't want "more" per say, I want different. I would like to feel better about my Zen purchases, not about my time in game - I feel fine about that.

Please understand, I have no issue paying for Zen, I just would like to see more (perceived) value for the game I pay(ed) for, and have noticed I get that perception from games which have a discount for "gold" members rather than a stipend.

Honestly, the part that feels like "work" is the part where I assumed responsibilities in my Fleet, so I cant exactly walk away from that part :D

[Editied - I realized some of the language could be taken as inflammatory, not my intention]

thecosmic1 08-10-2012 11:09 AM

Well, my point above is that I play all those FTP games I listed above - and several more - and I don't get any more perceived value from them then I do STO. At end-game of all those Hybrid games you're basically left with grinding something for something. At least in STO my grinding is earning me a real C-Store value. I can't grind enough in LotRO to buy a new horse every month, even with my Stipend.

I completely understand that you want more things to do in STO - we all do. But having said that I'm not seeing any real difference between STO and other games. Ultimately in those other games I'm left waiting for a new EP to come out to do new things. Otherwise I'm just doing the same raids over and over. So my money has no real value there either.

If I do spend all my gaming day only doing STO I do get burned out. But I'm fortunate that I can spend a couple of hours in STO, some in LotRO, some in Conan, and so on. Since I'm not only playing 1 game at a time I don't get myself that burned out on what's not there for me in STO: I'm having different needs in me fulfilled by different games.

And as I said above, you can play this game and put no cash into it, so how can the value of paying nothing for something mean you're not getting value from the C-Store? :)

jnohd 08-10-2012 11:23 AM

I... didn't say anything about grinding... um... are we having the same conversation?

I want more (percieved) value for my subscription when buying from the Z-store.

That's it.

Not when playing, buying...

And APB really does make the Sub worth it sometimes. I'll have to more closely examine the others. *** SUUUUUUCKS for F2P IMHO. Wont go back to that hot mess.

So yeah, your list of F2P Hybrid models that offer no sense of value for a subscription... are... um... not relevant? I mean, why when someone says "I think there isnt a good enough reason/value to subscribe, here are some suggestions for how to help that" are you replying with "Other games also have no reason/value to subscribe, so don't ask for improvement?"

Other countries lack human rights policies, so I should just give up on seeking to find ways to improve the ones in my country, right?

I really don't understand your line of replies... trolling, maybe? :confused:

thecosmic1 08-10-2012 11:33 AM


Originally Posted by jnohd (Post 5226161)
I... didn't say anything about grinding... um... are we having the same conversation?

I want more (percieved) value for my subscription when buying from the Z-store.

But how can you get more value when, even with a Subscription, you can buy things for free from the Z-Store? I have an LTS and I'm buying things for free every month.

I'm not losing any value by having a Subscription - especially when I have an LTS that reached the break even point nearly a year ago: IE, I've been getting Gold bonuses for a nearly a year even though I haven't really been paying for them like a monthly Subscriber does.

What can they give you more then simply saying: "play the game and get everything for free?"

What are you wanting? Elitist LTS-only missions? LTS discounts in the C-Store (isn't that what the Stipends' for: to buy something each month at a discount?). You want to feel extra good about money you paid and that has probably already exceeded the break even point like mine has?

PW's business philosophy is simple: Play for free, get all the content for free, pay for the fluff; and if you're a Cryptic Gold member we'll give you a Stipend and Vet Rewards on top of that. That's a pretty good deal - especially if, like me, you're past the break even point.

jnohd 08-10-2012 11:44 AM

Wow... I stopped reading at "Elitist LTS-only missions?" seem to have taken some interesting assumptions about my intentions and run headlong with them into a dark forest of false accusations... which I do not appreciate.

I clearly stated my suggestion.

Trash the stipend, swap it out for a discount. I'll buy more, PWE/Cryptic will earn more, more people will subscribe.

That's it. I would prefer a blanket discount to a straight-up $5 stipend for *all* subscribers.

Then I mentioned some other things I liked from other cash stores, including other ways to make subscriptions more attractive, and show their value more clearly.

You disagree, that's fine by me. I don't get or care where you decided it was acceptable to throw accusations of LTS entitlement into your post, but if it was to offend me, you sir have succeeded in doing so.

thecosmic1 08-10-2012 11:52 AM


Originally Posted by jnohd (Post 5226641)
You disagree, that's fine by me. I don't get or care where you decided it was acceptable to throw accusations of LTS entitlement into your post, but if it was to offend me, you sir have succeeded in doing so.

Well, offending you seemed only right after calling me a troll. :)

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