Diablo III: The best F2P game never made.

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So I got to thinking, I'm absolutely opposed to playing Diablo 3 as it is. Nothing about it screams "play me!" loud enough to overcome many of my misgivings on some of it's "features" (RMAH, always online DRM). Then I realized that every issue I have with the game would be negligible if the game was free-to-play. I'd consider using the RMAH to support my fellow players and the developers for the game. I wouldn't care about the online DRM because I didn't pay for the game and I'd be happy to let Blizzard set those rules. I could even ignore most of the design decisions that they made that I disagree with, because none of my money is invested in it.

All Blizz would have to do to get me to play D3 is make the full game downloadable for free, take a little more off the top of my transactions, and make my rare drops a little more rare. Not a lot, because players are going to need those carrots to keep playing, but enough to make the RMAH just a little more enticing.

What is everyone's thoughts on this idea? I sure as hell know it's never going to happen, but discussing the possibility sounds like a good topic.

Torchlight 2 for 20 bucks. No online req, no pay to win auction house. Buy yourself a copy, then buy your friend a copy, then buy a pizza and have a lan party

Or pay $60 for D3

I already plan on getting TL2. I'm speaking on what would get me to play Diablo 3. With games like TL or Titan Quest still hanging around, there is no real pressing need for me to play D3 as it is now. Besides, this thread really isn't about me as much as how much could change with a few minor adjustments.

Personaly i've never realy seen the 'problems' with the real money auctions, or the always online thing, ok i admit not being able to play because your internet drops out would suck, but it does solve alot of the problems D2 had at the same time, getting rid of private servers gets rid of the hacking and item duping, that shit was rampant in D2, same goes for the auction house, blizz knows full well people are gonna trade items for cash so they make it legit, its a compromise and honestly i'd rather have an official auction house system rather than all public games filling up with add bots constantly spamming websites to buy stuff from.

Then you get down to two very important facts, firstly at no point in the game are you required to buy items from the auction house, second you are not required to play with other people, the whole game can be completed solo, so if your two biggest complaints are the auctions and the being online, dont use those features. The only drawback im going to ackknowledge is that not everyone has a stable internet connection and so getting droped from games in inevitable, but the same could be said of pretty much any multiplayer game, its just somthing you have to put up with.

Anyway onto the meat of the subject, could it go f2p i guess its certainly a possibility, even if very unlikly, perhaps after a while the actual cost of the game will be reduced, take a look at world of warcraft, the system in itself is not all together that different, from the perspective of buy box upfront cost, pay subscription continuous cost, D3 will be buy box upfront cost, buy/sell items consistant cost.

Bear in mind that when wow launched it was at full retail price, now its somthing like 10 or $20 if you prefer. I can easily see D3 going the same way after a while, since it does have such a heavy online focus its in blizz's interests to get as many copies online as they can then sit back and rake in the transfer fee's from the auction house.

Who knows what the long term buisness plan for D3 is going to be, just as a guess based on previous games, there will be an expantion pack in a one to two years, maybe more depending on the sucess of the game overall. I guess anything is possible, it may eventualy shift to a f2p model, with concurant expansions adding more content to keep people playing and useing the auctions as much as possible, thus making a profit, but i feel more likly will be a drop off in retail cost as the months and years go buy it'll probably decrease in price and settle around 10 or $20.

.

I'll admit that it looks cool, and I'd definitely play it if it had a single player offline, but until that happens... no fucking way. Torchlight 2 is coming out for 20 bucks, has mods, has a map editor (I think), is multiplayer this time, and is offline.

Seishisha:

Then you get down to two very important facts, firstly at no point in the game are you required to buy items from the auction house, second you are not required to play with other people, the whole game can be completed solo, so if your two biggest complaints are the auctions and the being online, dont use those features.

Which still doesn't solve the problem if I want to play with other people and compete in PvP but don't feel like (or can afford) shelling out hundreds of dollars just to get competitive gear. I see your point, but there's a very real risk (if it actually will happen we can't say until the game has been out for a few months) that the RMAH will make the PvP scene more about who can fork out the most real money as opposed to who's been playing more/is better at the game.

Dendio:
Torchlight 2 for 20 bucks. No online req, no pay to win auction house. Buy yourself a copy, then buy your friend a copy, then buy a pizza and have a lan party

Or pay $60 for D3

You know, I bought Torchlight a few days ago to see what all the fuss was about with people propping up Torchlight 2 over D3, and I gotta say, it's boring as all get out :( I was so disappointed. It's weird, cause it's such a straight Diablo clone, you'd think it would be good, but that magic just isn't there.

I dont understand how they can charge a monthly subscription AND charge consumers for using the auction house. Credit where credit is due its a brilliant way to make an extra dollar (or two), but it seems like Blizzard are asking too much of their community. One thing is for sure, they are going to make a quick return on their investment with this game.

It would be better as a F2P model with auction house charges OR with a monthly subscription but no profiteering from the auction house.

Toby Driver:
The Diablo series should always be an over the top dungeon crawler hack and slash rpg with some solid lore to back it up. This retains that very minutely.

Diablo 3 is an over the top dungeon crawler hack and slash RPG with much more solid lore than either of it's predecessors.

Von Strimmer:
I dont understand how they can charge a monthly subscription AND charge consumers for using the auction house.

Are you referencing WoW or saying D3 has a subscription? Because D3 doesn't.

Gethsemani:
...that the RMAH will make the PvP scene more about who can fork out the most real money as opposed to who's been playing more/is better at the game.

That could be side-stepped by those who are against it by joining together for "free PVP", or whatever you want to call it: "Pure" fighting that is not bolstered with the use of real money by either party. Would you have liars who would subvert that? Of course, but one could argue that they would be outnumbered by people who feel the same as you do. Let the RM-people throw their dollars away for nice shiny stuff, while you and I fight "like real men", those who earned their gear through time and effort. We will showcase our skills in a contest of will, might, and above all: honor.

Our weapons and armor won't be shiny, oh no; they will have been stained with the blood of our enemies!

Von Strimmer:
I dont understand how they can charge a monthly subscription AND charge consumers for using the auction house. ...

Are you sure Diablo III has a monthly subscription? Diablo II did not as far as I was aware of, and I was under the impression D3 would follow from that example...maybe you know something I do not, but Im under the impression that that is inaccurate.

Justank:
Are you referencing WoW or saying D3 has a subscription? Because D3 doesn't.

Edit: Arg! Ninja-critique :P

I don't see why people hate the always-online thingy. It's of no use, and yes: if the internet goes down, the game goes down with it. But that's just about it. You won't notice anything.

Plus, the auction house is only an option. I think there are more then enough people that will enjoy it. The rest won't even touch it and that's fine too.

mh.
I'm not that much into Hack and Slay games
If it was free I'd give it a try too. But as it is, I'm not sure if I should buy it

Whateveralot:
I don't see why people hate the always-online thingy. It's of no use, and yes: if the internet goes down, the game goes down with it. But that's just about it. You won't notice anything.

Not true, I often want to play a single player game when I'm downloading something. Fire up D3 single player with a hefty download going and - oh no, I've got rubber banding and a 1 second delay on my attacks.

Happened during the beta and was infuriating.

I feel this thread is a marketing scheme for torchlight 2.

Nah I would hate D3 if it was fp2. First of all f2p games have a sneaky way of taking more money from the player not less. It sounds like a good idea but in my experience everything has a price. I would rather that price be out in the open rather than be hidden. Also, I find I like the communities a bit better if the game is not f2p.

Well, if it were free, I'd have much less problems with the game for sure.

Elamdri:
You know, I bought Torchlight a few days ago to see what all the fuss was about with people propping up Torchlight 2 over D3, and I gotta say, it's boring as all get out :( I was so disappointed. It's weird, cause it's such a straight Diablo clone, you'd think it would be good, but that magic just isn't there.

Do keep in mind, the first Torchlight is broken beyond repair.

The monsters drop almost more potions than gold, the game itself is incredibly easy, you will become way overleveled if you even just follow the story missions. The fact that pets can be minion masters, and bosses can be mind controlled make it slightly easier as well.

And yes, while the first one is a straight up diablo clone, I personally believe the second one will be quite different.

Even if Torchlight 2 won't be much different from Diablo 3 (it will, I prefer Torchlight's art style), it's still a lot cheaper. I just hope it won't be as broken as the first game.

Edit: Oh yeah, the thread was actually about something else. Well, I wouldn't hesitate to play Diablo free, of course. It's free, after all. I believe many more people would play it, and a lot more people would invest in the real money AH, which in turn makes Blizzard more money. Whether it would be enough to cover up the fact that they released the game for free, I wouldn't know. They have been giving it for free to people who subscribed for a year to wow, I believe.

Also, Torchlight (and according to the devs Torchlight 2 as well) runs on pretty much everything (even your toaster), while Diablo 3 might not.

What is a Diablo 3? I don't know anything about this.

Dendio:
Torchlight 2 for 20 bucks. No online req, no pay to win auction house. Buy yourself a copy, then buy your friend a copy, then buy a pizza and have a lan party

Or pay $60 for D3

Exactly. I have no interest in Diablo 3 whatsoever after all the horrible announcements. Still, it's probably going to be the best selling PC game ever. Which is a dangerous thing. Because if a game with always-on DRM sells well, those idiots from other game studios will take that as green light to implement always-on DRM in all PC titles, not realizing that the only reason it works for Diablo 3 is that people have been waiting for the game for 2 centuries, and that it is a polished well made PC title. I just know that's where we're headed. And I won't be a part of something that could very well destroy PC gaming.

The thing is you can choose to not use the auction house? It's not like they are forcing it on you unless I missed some info out. I do agree that I don't like the idea that it need to use the internet despite playing it on single player since there no other player than me (stupid monitoring stuff to see if I'm cheating).

Real-money auction house...

Why do so many people have a huge problem with this? I haven't got the slightest desire to pay real money for an in-game item. In fact, finding all of your own gear is part of gameplay and a major hook for a Diablo-like game.

It's like an expensive restaurant nearby you don't like. Instead of bitching about it, just don't go there.

Constant online connection is a feature I'd rather not have, but I do have a steady connection and basically all of my games are already on Steam (& BF3 on Origin), and the system works fine. As long as they keep their servers up and hassle-free, it's just like playing a game offline. I don't even plan to play multiplayer, and Blizzard surely has enough resources to keep the game playable at practically all times.

Adam Jensen:
Exactly. I have no interest in Diablo 3 whatsoever after all the horrible announcements. Still, it's probably going to be the best selling PC game ever. Which is a dangerous thing. Because if a game with always-on DRM sells well, those idiots from other game studios will take that as green light to implement always-on DRM in all PC titles, not realizing that the only reason it works for Diablo 3 is that people have been waiting for the game for 2 centuries, and that it is a polished well made PC title. I just that's where we're headed.

World of Warcraft (among countless others) has the exact same "always-on online DRM" as Diablo 3 and it sold pretty damn well. This 'dangerous thing' has been going on for many, many years, and I'm not seeing a lot of green-lit follow ups, outside of other online games (naturally), and UbiSoft.

Don't see a reason to panic here.

free to play will just make them sell retarded cosmetic gear and make it more grindy to encourage payment for actually practical gear. the diablo games have been grindy enough as it is.

Gethsemani:

Seishisha:

Then you get down to two very important facts, firstly at no point in the game are you required to buy items from the auction house, second you are not required to play with other people, the whole game can be completed solo, so if your two biggest complaints are the auctions and the being online, dont use those features.

Which still doesn't solve the problem if I want to play with other people and compete in PvP but don't feel like (or can afford) shelling out hundreds of dollars just to get competitive gear. I see your point, but there's a very real risk (if it actually will happen we can't say until the game has been out for a few months) that the RMAH will make the PvP scene more about who can fork out the most real money as opposed to who's been playing more/is better at the game.

Here is the problem with that.

People always say "well if I want to be with people on their LvL I need to buy"

No! you are an idiot!
Every piece of gear on the AH will have dropped for someone. That means even without damm AH it would still be there. There is no gear you hadn't have to deal with already.

They dont sell gear you can only by there! get it through your friggan skull. Its not pay to win.

You had to deal with the guy in better gear in D2 as well. You cannot expect balanced PvP in Diablo if gear = skill, because gear is rewarded randomly. It is a baseless whine.

Silverfox99:
I feel this thread is a marketing scheme for torchlight 2.

Nah I would hate D3 if it was fp2. First of all f2p games have a sneaky way of taking more money from the player not less. It sounds like a good idea but in my experience everything has a price. I would rather that price be out in the open rather than be hidden. Also, I find I like the communities a bit better if the game is not f2p.

Hear hear. Free-To-Play does not work in the utopistic way it sounds like. Just to mention a couple of things:

There's constant in-your-face reminding and in-game advertising about additional content they want you to buy.

Often all of the purchasable Free-To-Play content adds up to way more than the price of a regular full version game.

It's free to make a new account, so stopping bots, cheaters and related unwanted players is more difficult.

Coldie:

Adam Jensen:
Exactly. I have no interest in Diablo 3 whatsoever after all the horrible announcements. Still, it's probably going to be the best selling PC game ever. Which is a dangerous thing. Because if a game with always-on DRM sells well, those idiots from other game studios will take that as green light to implement always-on DRM in all PC titles, not realizing that the only reason it works for Diablo 3 is that people have been waiting for the game for 2 centuries, and that it is a polished well made PC title. I just that's where we're headed.

World of Warcraft (among countless others) has the exact same "always-on online DRM" as Diablo 3 and it sold pretty damn well. This 'dangerous thing' has been going on for many, many years, and I'm not seeing a lot of green-lit follow ups, outside of other online games (naturally), and UbiSoft.

Don't see a reason to panic here.

Have to point out the ever so small difference of a massivly multiplayer online game requireing "always-on online DRM" with a game that is largely single player. It is too easy to make an offline mode.

Coldie:

Adam Jensen:
Exactly. I have no interest in Diablo 3 whatsoever after all the horrible announcements. Still, it's probably going to be the best selling PC game ever. Which is a dangerous thing. Because if a game with always-on DRM sells well, those idiots from other game studios will take that as green light to implement always-on DRM in all PC titles, not realizing that the only reason it works for Diablo 3 is that people have been waiting for the game for 2 centuries, and that it is a polished well made PC title. I just that's where we're headed.

World of Warcraft (among countless others) has the exact same "always-on online DRM" as Diablo 3 and it sold pretty damn well. This 'dangerous thing' has been going on for many, many years, and I'm not seeing a lot of green-lit follow ups, outside of other online games (naturally), and UbiSoft.

Don't see a reason to panic here.

Are you fuckin' kidding me? WoW is an MMO! There is no single player. Diablo 3 has single player and therefore always-on DRM is completely unnecessary.

DoomRL, man. You can kill demons and get loot without having to pay a cent. (Unless you want to donate.)

you know, it's fun.
that's all i have to say, no matter what i do Activisions policies won't change, so i might as well have fun with the game. I will still check out torchlight but i really didn't like the first one.

Elamdri:

Dendio:
Torchlight 2 for 20 bucks. No online req, no pay to win auction house. Buy yourself a copy, then buy your friend a copy, then buy a pizza and have a lan party

Or pay $60 for D3

You know, I bought Torchlight a few days ago to see what all the fuss was about with people propping up Torchlight 2 over D3, and I gotta say, it's boring as all get out :( I was so disappointed. It's weird, cause it's such a straight Diablo clone, you'd think it would be good, but that magic just isn't there.

I kind felt the same, i mean sure i enjoyed Torchlight for a while, but soon after i just realized how subpar it was compared to Diablo 2.

teebeeohh:
you know, it's fun.
that's all i have to say, no matter what i do Activisions policies won't change, so i might as well have fun with the game. I will still check out torchlight but i really didn't like the first one.

That attitude is exactly the reason why their policies won't change

I haven't seen anything on Diablo III being pay to play. But if we're making up random lies then... I understand you have to give Blizzard your first born child and I am opposed to that! Just because I can't find the little bastard.

Off Topic: the phrase I had to enter was "love you". Thanks Escapist, but i'd rather just stay friends.

Kordie:

Have to point out the ever so small difference of a massivly multiplayer online game requireing "always-on online DRM" with a game that is largely single player. It is too easy to make an offline mode.

Adam Jensen:

Are you fuckin' kidding me? WoW is an MMO! There is no single player. Diablo 3 has single player and therefore always-on DRM is completely unnecessary.

Diablo 3 is not the same game as Diablo 2. Diablo 3 has no more "single player mode" than any MMO out there, because Diablo 3 works like one. The difference is that there is no persistent world (the 'Massively' part of 'MMO') where you can encounter other players in the wild and the entirety of the game is instanced for you and your party.

The world, monsters, loot, combat - are all controlled by the server, exactly like an MMO, your friends (and random strangers, if you allow them) can join your party and help you out at any time, like in an MMO, you can get murdered by a lagspike even when playing solo, just like in an MMO. I guess the difference is that you can pause the game while alone (it was added in the beta recently), but then again, Star Trek Online, an MMO, also allows that, so that's a wash.

The game cannot have an offline mode, because the game is just a client and the server is not included. I'm not super happy about having to play online and deal with lag, but I find that the game is definitely worth it, so I'll deal with it.

Coldie:

Kordie:

Have to point out the ever so small difference of a massivly multiplayer online game requireing "always-on online DRM" with a game that is largely single player. It is too easy to make an offline mode.

Adam Jensen:

Are you fuckin' kidding me? WoW is an MMO! There is no single player. Diablo 3 has single player and therefore always-on DRM is completely unnecessary.

Diablo 3 is not the same game as Diablo 2. Diablo 3 has no more "single player mode" than any MMO out there, because Diablo 3 works like one. The difference is that there is no persistent world (the 'Massively' part of 'MMO') where you can encounter other players in the wild and the entirety of the game is instanced for you and your party.

The world, monsters, loot, combat - are all controlled by the server, exactly like an MMO, your friends (and random strangers, if you allow them) can join your party and help you out at any time, like in an MMO, you can get murdered by a lagspike even when playing solo, just like in an MMO. I guess the difference is that you can pause the game while alone (it was added in the beta recently), but then again, Star Trek Online, an MMO, also allows that, so that's a wash.

The game cannot have an offline mode, because the game is just a client and the server is not included. I'm not super happy about having to play online and deal with lag, but I find that the game is definitely worth it, so I'll deal with it.

The reason that Diablo 3 does this is purely by design. If blizzard wanted to, they could make an offline single player mode. They even have it in SC2. I understand that it would require certain actions to be taken from the server and put on the clients computer so that means more space taken up by the game... aside from that there should be no reason not to do this. You could argue file security and tampering, but again this would only affect single player play, as online everything is still controlled by the servers. Having an online component, and having the server control everything does not make it the same as an MMO. COD tracks online play, unlocks, rankings and much more and yet somehow they still have offline play with single player. If the first thing you think is thats a rediculous comparison because the single player is not the same, then congrats you should also see that the online play of D3 is not the same as WoW or other MMO's.

The point is that this always online DRM is not needed, and there are other options. It is a pure design choice by blizzard to have it in.

Signa:
All Blizz would have to do to get me to play D3 is make the full game downloadable for free, take a little more off the top of my transactions, and make my rare drops a little more rare. Not a lot, because players are going to need those carrots to keep playing, but enough to make the RMAH just a little more enticing.

It's this kind of attitude that gives F2P a bad name.

Diablo 3 is not F2P and never will be because enough people are willing to pay for it that Blizzard do not give one fuck about the people who are not.

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