Pay to win policy

zchesney

Chiliarch
Hey so we gamers and strategist are very accustomed to micro transcations in games now and the pay for an advantage system in games For the most part we understand and dont mind.

But this is ridiculous new worlds are having 3,000 point players with 2 cities on day one !!!
We want Inno games to make cash flow and be sucsessfull but this is becoming too much of a problem.

advantages we can counter with skill and experience. But when the day player protection ends and there are players with 4 cities and 4 times as many units as you.

When you have played very efficiently maximised every 24 hours of a day in building times and your still lacking by more than a factor times 4 thats a joke. not a game

change the name of the packs the £70 could be called the "get good pack"
or change the advisors to "Baby sitters with bonuses"
 
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AnWePe

Taxiarch
and because of this you now know why inno maked the new endgame^^

much faster worlds
much faster winning endgame
much faster world ends
lead to
much more new worlds
and this means more profit because grazy players will spend more money at the beginning of a world

inno doesn´t care about an interesting endgame, they only care about money^^ and a look at the dutch domi world rizina would proof this^
where 20 of the top 30 players are in the ally number one and this ally has more points than ally 2 and 3 together, how will you prevent of this ally will easy win that world inno?^^
 

AnWePe

Taxiarch
that worlds looks also very bad

it seems that Number one ally has two wings if yes than die question is WHY^^ helping 50 players to win und get nothing for sounds bad^^
 

OldDragon

Phrourach
We want Inno games to make cash flow and be sucsessfull but this is becoming too much of a problem.

Advantages we can counter with skill and experience. But when the day player protection ends and there are players with 4 cities and 4 times as many units as you.

When you have played very efficiently maximised every 24 hours of a day in building times and your still lacking by more than a factor times 4 thats a joke. not a game
@zchesney is observing that Grepolis is a money game now. It was not always like this. At the very beginning of Grepolis, money was a minor benefit and skill was much more important. But like most free-to-play games, this changed.

The following article explains the difference between a money game and a skill game.

Gamasutra - The Top F2P Monetization Tricks
06/26/13 by Ramin Shokrizade

A game of skill is one where your ability to make sound decisions primarily determines your success. A money game is one where your ability to spend money is the primary determinant of your success. Consumers far prefer skill games to money games, for obvious reasons. A key skill in deploying a coercive monetization model is to disguise your money game as a skill game.

[A popular F2P game] is designed masterfully in this regard. Early game play maps can be completed by almost anyone without spending money, and they slowly increase in difficulty. This presents a challenge to the skills of the player, making them feel good when they advance due to their abilities. Once the consumer has been [groomed] as a spender, the game difficulty ramps up massively, shifting the game from a skill game to a money game as progression becomes more dependent on the use of premium boosts than on player skills.

If the shift from skill game to money game is done in a subtle enough manner, the brain of the consumer has a hard time realizing that the rules of the game have changed. If done artfully, the consumer will increasingly spend under the assumption that they are still playing a skill game and “just need a bit of help”. ...the costs just keep going up until the consumer realizes they are playing a money game.

Creative control of Inno shifted from the two German brothers who founded Grepolis and were true gamers, to a large investor group who's main interest is maximizing profit. Ergo, Grepolis became a money game. Unfortunately, gamers are generally logical and analytical and prefer skill games... and the switch from skill to money was discovered by most of the player base. This is why most of the old veteran players quit playing some time ago.

inno doesn´t care about an interesting endgame, they only care about money^^ and a look at the dutch domi world rizina would proof this^
where 20 of the top 30 players are in the ally number one and this ally has more points than ally 2 and 3 together, how will you prevent of this ally will easy win that world inno?^^
@AnWePe makes a different but related observation. The top skill players began banding together many years ago in powerful pre-made teams that, if properly lead, were impossible to beat. However now, the top money players are doing the same thing. If you plan to spend $10000 USD or more to win this game, then of course you will band together with other money players to protect your "investment"
 
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AnWePe

Taxiarch
@AnWePe makes a different but related observation. The top skill players began banding together many years ago in powerful pre-made teams that, if properly lead, were impossible to beat. However now, the top money players are doing the same thing. If you plan to spend $10000 USD or more to win this game, then of course you will band together with other money players to protect your "investment"
Not really imo, i play grepo since closed beta and right now worlds with wonders and huge masspacts exist but with a little organisation enemys of this pacts can provide an fast win. Take a look at german world Latos, where the Number one ally has over 10 pacts and 7 of them (or maybe just 6^^) are in Top 10, they tryed it but the get only 6 Wonders and self only 3.

At Domination you can collect big players around you and with a simple and easy "trick" you can win. Some of your Member only have to leave your ally short before the Dominatioin value degreasing would stop. because of the leaves the value degreased further and after that, the player joined back and you reached the value with easy and so much over the border that its impossible to break last stand.
 
I feel less hot on this issue now. In the past year Inno has really nerfed its events at its player's request.

Changed the end game, something I can confirm wasn't a cash grab. It was a genuine attempt by players and Inno to create something better.

Shorter Worlds, four months is the absolute minimum. The world has potential to be much longer depending on the competition. Basically if the world is bad, it'll end sooner. If not, it'll keep going. You ever play a world that you just absolutely dominated or were being dominated on? You probably want it to end as soon as possible either way.

These steps were big needs to generate an interest in the game again. Now Inno has to keep a sharp eye on their new worlds and adjust to the kinks. This should look like Deadman Mode on Runescape, every time a few worlds conclude, make changes to the end game. Inno also needs to generate Ads and hype for their game. They can make all the changes in the world but it won't do any long term good if it only reaches and appeals to the same fanbase that it already has.

Golding Out Cities- I get the point. Id personally love a return to pre instant buy. I think instant buy speeds up the pace of the game to a point where a new player has a very short amount of time to master the game. Sometimes that's three days. Even seven days isn't enough. Back in 1.26 and early 2.0 it sometimes took me 2-3 weeks to get a team of newer players ready to fight the good opponents. I'm not talking building the towns up, I'm talking learning the game.

I get the casual world exists but that won't prepare a player to play Grep on a competent level since there's the 20% restriction on attacks.

New players are a game's heart and soul. It's future income for Inno vs money right now. Money right now is always going to fade away.

Thank for coming to my TED Talk.
 

AnWePe

Taxiarch
i totally agree to your second half^^

to your first half i can´t agree^^ but its ok different opinions are not bad^^
 

Kal Gordon

Phrourach
I feel less hot on this issue now. In the past year Inno has really nerfed its events at its player's request.

Changed the end game, something I can confirm wasn't a cash grab. It was a genuine attempt by players and Inno to create something better.
I really liked that we finally got the new endgame that we'd been promised for a considerable while. It has the potential to make for some great worlds, but unfortunately the pilot EN Domination world appears to have been spoiled by the leadership of the top few alliances making an agreement to just pool their biggest players for an easy combined win.

I have to say that I sort of disagree with your point on events:
  • The community did request event nerfs. Inno's delivery of that wasn't exactly stellar, however:
    • The 2017 Christmas Wheel probabilities were changed to reduce the chances of getting the better items. The result of this is that the heavy golders could achieve similar levels of abuse with only a small expense increase, and the players who spent less (or no) gold got punished.
      • Fortunately they did reverse this change for the wheel of time event this year.
    • Pandora's Box suffered a serious reward nerf, but remained as the most difficult and time-intensive event in the entire game. They double-nerfed the rewards (worse box rewards, and no shop), and didn't fix the issues with it being unreasonably hard.
    • Hades' Portal was butchered into Attack of the Hydra. The rewards, which were impossible to abuse and weren't overpowered, were halved. The missions were made harder and longer, supposedly to balance out the increase in event duration but they didn't match up at all and the LCM went back to giving us the silent treatment when we pointed that out.
    • Incantation Circle, one of the events with the biggest abuse potential, was left practically untouched.
    • Having said they would decrease the availability of BP-multiplier tokens (which they did do in Pandora's Box and Sparta vs Hades), they then started selling them in large numbers in expensive war packages. This made it even easier for the heavy spenders to acquire them in large numbers (as they go into the extended inventory), while making them inaccessible to the majority of the community.
      • They have just done the same thing with Land Expansion tokens in the Black Friday / Cyber Monday deals, despite supposedly taking on board the negative feedback about the BP-token issue described above.

A significant proportion of event nerf requests were made due to the abuse capability for heavy spenders. Inno's response has been to tilt the game further in favour of heavy spenders by nerfing the less-abusable events and then selling the rewards directly to the heavy spenders through packages. (Which opens a whole new issue, due to Inno trying to determine interest in a "premium club" for the bigger spenders to give them even more benefits, such as priority access to the support team and exclusive packages. Yes, we know about that, Inno.)
 

dadofwildthang

Phrourach
I have been here awhile and offended some folks., ;{) as well I have made some pertinent points and amused others.
I dont spend a ton of Gold to play but my last foray into 110 showed me how much this Game has been changed to pander to the Big gold spenders..
Grepo is devolving into the "Keep up with the Jones" neighborhood scenario...you either spend to stay competitive or leave..
Big money spending is rampart and unending in these new worlds..There seems to be no interest from INNO in reigning in the spenders but rather they are actively pursuing the ability to create a Spenders paradise/haven in which the money talks and the average players(non big gold spenders) are told "Bohica" wrt their complaints.


BOHICA stands for Bend over here it comes again
 

Kal Gordon

Phrourach
I beg you pardon? We now have to pay to have mods answer tickets? Wow, just when I thought we have hit the bottom, I find another later of scum.
A while ago, InnoGames sent out a survey to gold users, primarily the heavier gold users. This survey asked a number of lifestyle/income questions, then proceeded to ask the players what benefits they would like as part of being in a "special program" (basically a privilege program for those who spend serious money on the game). It suggested a number of benefits:
  • Exclusive deals. Not really any different to supermarket loyalty cards or bonus scheme cards, I guess.
  • Advance information on game developments. Again, not too different to some shop memberships.
  • Exclusive items. Presumably inventory tokens. Great Armings are close to cash-only anyways; you won't win the event rankings without gold, so the only way to get them without spending money is through the account birthday rewards (but not until the later birthdays, from what I've seen). I'm unsure if this is linked to BP-tokens being made harder to obtain through events and being more prevalent in packages.
  • "Priority support". This wasn't explained further from what I saw of the survey. At the minimum, I'd guess this means that you get priority when support are dealing with lots of tickets. That's already worrying in a game where getting issues sorted quickly can be essential in the case of bugs or ban appeals. Of course, I'm sure most people can work out what the worst-case extension of this particular benefit is. Another concern for me is that this goes against what InnoGames have been claiming: it has been stated on multiple occasions that moderators do not have access to the details of whether a player spends money on the game or not. Obviously, if they did implement this benefit, they can no longer say it. However it would appear that they already keep such a list: this survey was sent out to those who spend money on the game, after all, not randomised among the entire community.

This survey didn't go out just on Grepolis. At least one player reported receiving it through Elvenar (another of InnoGames' games).

We (the GPC) had been planning to take public action on this, but it fell through due to a combination of deniability by InnoGames and fear of infractions / removal from GPC. With InnoGames having practically abandoned us again, I feel that I can say this without messing up the GPC-staff interactions.
 

ana perssons

Phrourach
I am almost not-shocked. We suspected for years that mods catered to the heavy golders in conflict resolution scenarios. But had no proof of course, so we just sounded petty and paranoid. I never got a survey, so i guess i can take comfort in the fact that i am not overspending on a silly browser game.

Those thanksgiving 'deals' seemed to be a joke, but maybe not so crazy from Inno point of view. They could see how many people paid for the more exclusive items. And presumably, who paid for them.

Most of my old friends are gone. They eventually had enough of Inno's greedy shenanigans. Plus, the end-game improvements that were never delivered along with the propensity of the cuddle club to lock up servers really took a lot of fun out of the game. Now, i meet many people giving up, playing their last server, observing from the sidelines...

Two things that inno did to hasten their own demise: ignoring the gaming community who really did want playability to come first and assuming that there would be a never-ending stream of rich folks wanting to throw large amounts of cash into a silly browser game.

I dont believe that the top tier of rich gamers is enough to sustain the game once the masses of regular gamers have walked away.
 

Jalmundr the Bear

Hipparchus
A while ago, InnoGames sent out a survey to gold users, primarily the heavier gold users. This survey asked a number of lifestyle/income questions, then proceeded to ask the players what benefits they would like as part of being in a "special program" (basically a privilege program for those who spend serious money on the game). It suggested a number of benefits:
  • Exclusive deals. Not really any different to supermarket loyalty cards or bonus scheme cards, I guess.
  • Advance information on game developments. Again, not too different to some shop memberships.
  • Exclusive items. Presumably inventory tokens. Great Armings are close to cash-only anyways; you won't win the event rankings without gold, so the only way to get them without spending money is through the account birthday rewards (but not until the later birthdays, from what I've seen). I'm unsure if this is linked to BP-tokens being made harder to obtain through events and being more prevalent in packages.
  • "Priority support". This wasn't explained further from what I saw of the survey. At the minimum, I'd guess this means that you get priority when support are dealing with lots of tickets. That's already worrying in a game where getting issues sorted quickly can be essential in the case of bugs or ban appeals. Of course, I'm sure most people can work out what the worst-case extension of this particular benefit is. Another concern for me is that this goes against what InnoGames have been claiming: it has been stated on multiple occasions that moderators do not have access to the details of whether a player spends money on the game or not. Obviously, if they did implement this benefit, they can no longer say it. However it would appear that they already keep such a list: this survey was sent out to those who spend money on the game, after all, not randomised among the entire community.

This survey didn't go out just on Grepolis. At least one player reported receiving it through Elvenar (another of InnoGames' games).

We (the GPC) had been planning to take public action on this, but it fell through due to a combination of deniability by InnoGames and fear of infractions / removal from GPC. With InnoGames having practically abandoned us again, I feel that I can say this without messing up the GPC-staff interactions.

Here is THE proof that MODs cater to gold users and why gold users don't get bans when they are IN FACT cheating. Welcome to the downfall of Grepolis... there is NO reason "heavy" gold users (or anyone for that matter) should get exclusive rewards and etc because they spend more.

Someone's a multi-millionaire playing this game and spends thousands of dollars. It's nothing to them. But someone whose income is only 35K a year and spends even a few hundred dollars is FAR more valuable to them than those thousands to the millionaire. If is BY FAR the MOST unfair, inhumane, and downright absurd thought process I've EVER seen related to this game. WORSE that all these idiot leaders and alliances I've faced. And WORSE than all the drama.

Kal, I know you're just doing your job here but even YOU must know this is wrong in its entirety. These absurdities HAVE to stop!!
 

Kal Gordon

Phrourach
Kal, I know you're just doing your job here but even YOU must know this is wrong in its entirety. These absurdities HAVE to stop!!
I know it's wrong. I strictly dislike the idea of a "premium club" in a game. I can sort of understand exclusive packages, so long as they are not overpowered. But as I stated above, I strictly dislike the idea of "priority support" in any form. Especially given how InnoGames refuses to be open about the moderation system, even when there are major faults with moderation or moderators.

I don't have the power to make this sort of thing stop. They're currently ignoring us (again). And even when they do pay attention, they have no obligation to act on it. In multiple cases they have "accepted" negative feedback saying that something needs to change, and then repeated the disliked actions shortly afterwards (see the new hero, and the Thanksgiving packages).
 

Jalmundr the Bear

Hipparchus
I know it's wrong. I strictly dislike the idea of a "premium club" in a game. I can sort of understand exclusive packages, so long as they are not overpowered. But as I stated above, I strictly dislike the idea of "priority support" in any form. Especially given how InnoGames refuses to be open about the moderation system, even when there are major faults with moderation or moderators.

I don't have the power to make this sort of thing stop. They're currently ignoring us (again). And even when they do pay attention, they have no obligation to act on it. In multiple cases they have "accepted" negative feedback saying that something needs to change, and then repeated the disliked actions shortly afterwards (see the new hero, and the Thanksgiving packages).
Agreed. Thank you for being honest with us at least. I know the US Servers imploded with the former COMA and I started the rally that got her fired from her job for those same delusions and "personal favors" her and her MOD team gave people (Such as free gold and etc to specific or favored players). These kinds of things us players have been crying for justice for years on. 9 years in this game and nothing has changed in this regard (mostly - some changes have been made).

The ONLY way I found Inno to actually respond is if they're personally emailed (like gmail, yahoo, aol, hotmail, etc) by the players with our complaints. They may take 2 days to respond, but when enough player base emails them, they IMMEDIATELY change. Course, the current COMA and MODs deleted my forum account on the US servers because they're still corrupt mostly and I'd call them out on it. But, also because they know I will NOT stand for these kinds of lunacies and neither should the players of this game.

Anyways, thanks though Kal. Please do whatever you can for us in regards to our complaints <3
 

AnWePe

Taxiarch
I don't have the power to make this sort of thing stop. They're currently ignoring us (again).
100% true

and on the new endgame and what happend on EN, we heard that on DE too and this sounds so bad but it shows a really bad the new endgame is because of course a world CAN be good it can also be really really bad and the change is on Domi much higher and comes much faster in the most cases i believe.

a look on each domi world shows this more than clear.