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 Post subject: Will Massive Assault multiplayer continue to be free?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2004 9:39 am 
Hi,

I just read about Massive Assault Network, and I see that it's a subscription-based service. So I'm wondering if the standard version of Massive Assault will still be free to play online (I sure hope so!).

Btw, for those who don't know, here's the press release:

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Wargaming.net announces Massive Assault Network, which has been in development for the last 3 months. It is scheduled for release on April 5th 2004.

“The online Massive Assault’s community is rapidly growing and many players are known to be totally addicted by the Internet play component,” said Victor Kislyi, the president of Wargaming.net. “We have realized that Massive Assault's concept is a perfect one for creating an online strategy for hardcore players”.

Massive Assault Network is oriented for online players. The product is based on award-winning Massive Assault title, which multiplayer’s part has been significantly improved with:

* Integrated ingame chat * Opponent finder system * Personal challenge system * Tournament manager system * Detailed online statistics

Massive Assault Network allows unlimited number of World War games against live opponents on a beautiful planet called “Emerald” absolutely for free. Other planets (6 for now and more to come) as well as participation in championships and clan wars will be available for a reasonable subscription fee.

The product is supposed for free distribution by download. It includes tutorial singleplayer mode for quick involvement into the game and some training before online play.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2004 10:21 am 
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Massive Assault (MA) and Massive Assault Network (MAN) are supposed to be compatible in network play and enlarge online community by a new way of distribution and pricing for the game. MAN will definitely increase satisfaction of MA players by introducing lots of new features and paying lots of developers' attention to it.

And MA players will play full-featured MAN for free as it stated in the manual. Wargaming.net may change this policy giving 90 days prior notice. And this notice is not issued yet and is not supposed to be issued in the nearest future.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 6:43 am 
Thanks for your answer (which didn't really answer anything :) ).. I guess it's a while until we have to pay for multiplayer, as the game haven't been released worldwide yet, but based on what you've said, I'm worried about the future.

Ofcourse, I support your wish to make money off what you've made, and I'm happy you continue to support the current MA community, but speaking from a purely selfish point of view, I don't like the idea of paying for MA multiplayer as it means that I will probably not be able to play. I'm not a serious player - when I'm challenged, I accept, and I have quite a lot of fun when playing, but I tend not to challenge others because my time is limited and I play a lot of other games too. I like playing this game online. But unless the monthly fee is extremely low, I simply don't play it enugh to justify paying for it, considering I've allready bought the game.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 7:40 am 
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Is $4.95/month too much for you?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 8:37 am 
VaNO wrote:
Is $4.95/month too much for you?

Well, that depends. If I play 20 games a month, then it's not that bad, but if I play 2 games a month, then it's too much.

The thing with such a monthly fee is that it discourages casual players like me. In a game with a free multiplayer component (TrackMania or Battlefield, for instance), I can leave the game for weeks before deciding that I'd like to play an online game or two. It's my decision - I've allready paid for the game, so it doesn't matter how active I am. If I had to pay a monthly fee it wouldn't be that easy, because then I'd have to think whether I would play the game "enough" to justify paying.

This usually makes me avoid subscription based games alltogether, as there's still plenty of free multiplayer games around, and I fear that's what'll happen if I have to pay for MA multiplayer. Though it would be sad, as I enjoy the game and would very much like the option to play against someone else occationally (and not always on Emerald) in the future.

Maybe you could make online play free for people who don't play much (like less than four games a month) and who've allready paid for MA (in other words, not people who've downloaded MAN)? All the serious players would pay, while casual players like me (who don't use much of your server's bandwith) would also be able to enjoy a game of MA occationally.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 10:09 am 
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Imho, to implement chat and statistics is not enough to make people pay monthly fees. There should be something far more attractive. I wonder what should it be in the case of MA.
Maybe tournaments with money prizes ? Or exclusive boosters and superunits like those cards in MtG ? (..it's time to send my megaostrich into combat, I've just won it in the last tournament.. :lol: ).
Well, I know it sounds like a nonsense :)
The least thing could be done here is to increase dramatically the community size. For now, there is about 300 people registered here. How many of them will pay for every month indeed ? 50 or 100 ? The opponents will be expired in 2 months.. :-?
MA is a very nice game. The problem is it's absolutely another sort of games than Ultima Online or Star Wars Galaxies..


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 10:28 am 
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Unfortunately, I'll have to agree. Everyone knows I have a passion for this game, but if I need to pay every month though I've already bought this game, I would definately decline doing the MAN after a while. If the idea is to make MA more accessible to the public, then this is a great idea, but I agree that the people that join will be temporary.

Question is, is there upkeep costs with MAN? It doesn't seem to need nearly as much consistent support in servers/moderators as MMOs. In that case, the monthly fee is good to start and let people try out the game, and 5$ isn't very much, but it shouldn't be permanent. If they are anything like most of the rest of us, they will get hooked on the game and will want to continue to play. Perhaps once people decide to buy the full game, they can then play for free?

One other question... does MAN take over all multiplayer aspects? Like if you are playing online, you are part of the MAN?

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NWO website:
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 10:37 am 
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VaNO wrote:
Is $4.95/month too much for you?


Yes. I can play many, MANY other games, multiplayer, for free. I see nothing on offer that would make me pay a monthly fee. With MMORPG I understand the need, but I cannot see it for MA.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 10:50 am 
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Maelstrom wrote:
Question is, is there upkeep costs with MAN? It doesn't seem to need nearly as much consistent support in servers/moderators as MMOs.

Ofcourse, the server costs a little, but all it does (AFAIK) is to send and receive game turns and keep track of scores.. which isn't really all that much, and if server costs is a problem, all they have to do is to enable some sort of direct connect or PBEM support, and people wouldn't even need the central server. It would mess up the ranks and statistics, but I'd honestly much rather have a chance to play the game than know I'm a captain or whatever :)
Quote:
Perhaps once people decide to buy the full game, they can then play for free?

Nice idea.
Quitch wrote:
I can play many, MANY other games, multiplayer, for free. I see nothing on offer that would make me pay a monthly fee. With MMORPG I understand the need, but I cannot see it for MA.

That's pretty much my opinion as well, especially as I don't play MA nearly as much as the big folks around here. I really like playing online, and it would be sad not to have that chance, but at the same time, I'd rather play TrackMania for free than pay $5 a month to be allowed to play MA.

Phew. Finally registered - I'm tired of seeing all those errors in my posts and not have the chance to fix them :)


Last edited by Kolorabi on Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 11:48 am 
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MAN is subscription based project and that's it.
There are 2 basic varians about MA and MAN relations:

1) No MA players may use features of MAN no matter what they are. And there is no other way to use the latest multiplayer upgrades than subscribe to MAN. It means that MA users may play in multiplayer mode for free as long as they want, but only with MA versions without additional features. That is a variant where MAN doesn't affect MA at all.

2) All users of MA get at least 3 monthes of the most expensive MAN subscription option in addition to already played monthes. And if you subtract monthly subscription fee for MAN (the most expensive or the cheapest one) multiplied by duration of this period from the cost of MA box, you will get such ridiculous number, which is sometimes even negative, and almost always much cheaper then poor shareware game... That is a variant where MA players are always with the latest achievements and improvements.

Which one do you like more?
Personally I do not like to leave MA players alone with box version of multiplayer. If you like just ask me. I will do no matter what do I like.

And one more remark. Never count other's money. If you want count money of independent developers I may answer you for myself. I have not received any cent from damn american publisher. And it makes MA project "a bit" unprofitable. And there is no other way to continue to do what I like to bring you what you like than to introduce MAN project with subscription fee which is independed from any publishers. And if this project fails I will have (and other developers too) to work on boring business/accounting software. And when it happens no multiplayer will be at all. Nor subscription based, nor free. What I want is to let MA live as long as it possible. That's it.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:07 pm 
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"And one more remark. Never count other's money. If you want count money of independent developers I may answer you for myself. I have not received any cent from damn american publisher. And it makes MA project "a bit" unprofitable."

That just seems wrong to me. (Not what you actually said, just the way it works, it irks me). Or did they just set you up with pittling liscense fees and run with it? That's not cool, either way. . . :evil:

I was curious what the feasibility of running both options is. You get 1-3 months of MAN free, and then after that you can either take the "Vanilla" MA multiplayer or choose to pay for the service in order to get updates and things like that (kinda like the StarDock dealy that they use for Galactic Civilizations) at a prompt time. And whenever you release updates or new maps you offer them for 3-6 months exclusively to MAN, and then release them to the general public after that time. . .

I greatly enjoy MA, and I may not be playing many games at once, yet, but I definately see myself doing that in the future, just weening myself into it, and I could forsee myself paying for it. . .

I like the idea of "tiered" payment schedule, did you have any ideas of how you were going to do it? I'd be interested to see what you're dreamin' up over there. :D

And, personally, I don't think $5 is all that horrible of a cost, especially since the game only cost me $30...

Also, on that note, would you offer Quarterly/Yearly subscriptions at a reduced cost, as compared to monthly subscriptions? I.e. $15 for 4 months (get one free!) or $30-$40 for a full year or something. . .

Me.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:40 pm 
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Publishers... Yes, it's wrong. American publisher covers more than 50% of world MA market, but is absolutely true that we've not received any money from them although Gold Master was delivered more than 6 monthes ago. And personally I do not see any reasons why they will pay us any cent in the nearest future in the way how they are doing their business. That's our (developers) fault that we've signed contract with such publisher. I think we should not discuss it further. Shit happens. But show must go on. And we're doing our best for Massive Assault.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:43 pm 
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Discounts are supposed to be, of course. And not only for quarter, half-a-year or yearly subscription. But for MA box buyers and beta-testers additionally too.

Three-tier pricing will be anounced after beta-test over.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 4:37 pm 
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Never realized it was so bad with Matrix. Wish there was a way to bypass them through purchasing the game from Europe or something. That's what I'd have my friends do. Don't want to support such a monetary black hole.

I suppose MAN would have that effect as well, a way to bypass the publisher (as VaNo pointed out). And for all the support the Dev team does, more than any other group I've ever seen for a game, I personally think it may be worth the 5$, to keep this idea alive.

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NWO website:
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2004 5:37 pm 
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I'm not a huge player yet, but I believe in supporting people who do good work. I don't mind paying a monthly fee for a good product, I would pay for the full service. After all, I would have bought this game at $50, so at $5 a month, I can play for 4 months and still feel like I've paid a good price. :wink:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2004 3:51 am 
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Ok, the situation is clear. Of course playing for a fee, all the more which is optional, is better than no playing at all. But there is one more offer.
Wouldn't you grant temporary free access to MAN for a few best players (contest winners an so on) ?
The first is it will provide at least minimal number of MAN participants for the first time. Second, these players in their turn may be asked to do some "mentoring", write articles and do other propaganda :wink:
Third, such a prospect would encourage players' activity for the near future.
At last, it simply wil be a pity if a good player will give up the game because of $5..


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2004 7:45 am 
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2 Pivo - i think that Vano said clearly that even if MA users will be obliged to pay for MAN
they will get at least 3 months of free MAN playing and only after that they will need to pay.So purchasing a MA box is like pre-paying 3 MAN months in advance.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2004 7:57 am 
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Yes, we are going to allow play full MAN for free by the following ways:
1) There will be tournaments for "trial" players, where 3 winners and one random selected lucky guy receive subscription for some periods.
2) Tournaments for payed players will be rewarded too
3) Tournament and clan organizers will play for free
4) Mentors will play for free too. Mentors will receive a couple of automatically created games with novices daily

So, win tournaments or do something for community's benefit and play for free - no problem.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2004 8:02 am 
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And we also seriously think about Yandex-money or WebMoney (and special prices) for exUSSR countries since plastic cards are quite rare there yet ;-)


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2004 9:15 am 
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Thanks


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