Tag Archives: Micro-transactions

Exposed: Activision Blizzard Caught Stealing XP from Players in Destiny 2… AGAIN!

In the past few weeks leading up to the Christmas shopping season, large gaming companies continue to experience expensive scandals and bad PR. Activision Blizzard has in the recent past been revealed to have had a patent for manipulating matchmaking services in order to produce a false illusion of in-game purchases making the player win more often. In reality, players are just matched up against someone who will beat them – unless they pay to win.

[Activision Patent Matchmaking Pay To Win – Presumably for Call of Duty 2018] :Alt Source:

Fast forward to this month, the patent may have further reaching consequences than originally thought. Destiny 2, released in early September of this year, has reportedly (update: admitted by Bungie) created a video game experience that hides an XP downscale the longer a person plays. In the complete opposite tradition of RPG elements like experience actually go down over time instead of up.

If a player kept playing the same missions repeatedly – they would be earning less per mission as Destiny 2 progresses on. This is especially illogical since later missions will require more leveled up characters, and is essentially just an attempt to force players to play every day for a new set of mundane tasks handed down rather than play their own way. Not to mention the issue of loot-boxes, which we will discuss soon.

It took nearly 10 weeks for this to be discovered by gamers. What other franchises are effected by this greed-driven logic? Which beloved game franchise will be tarnished next?

Continue reading Exposed: Activision Blizzard Caught Stealing XP from Players in Destiny 2… AGAIN!

How Star Wars Battlefront II’s Crate System Works

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Star Wars Battlefront II will be the first DICE multiplayer game to for go the industry practice of the Season Pass, since Battlefield: Bad Company 2. Instead what we will see here is micro transactions in the form of Crates. You can earn credits in game to purchase the Crates, or of course use real world currency. The game will give you daily crates, and will feature star cards, crafting parts, and extra credits. There are different levels of rarity to this. Such as common, uncommon, rare, epic, and legendary. All these cards have different rarity’s, such as commons and uncommon likely always appearing, and legendary cards rarely appearing. The crafting parts is like another currency, used to upgrade your star cards, which would mean you can upgrade a ability for your classes, even the hero characters. Duplicates can happen but they will be turned into crafting parts to upgrade your abilities.

This is a first look at the current build of the Crate unlock system. Some people are worried this system could lead to a pay to win scenrio, which is possible. But at this point in time we don’t know, as some changes are likely to happen during the Beta’s of the game, up until launch. Star Wars Battlefront II launches on November 14th for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and on Origin.

Below is Battlefront Updates in depth look at the Crate System, so if you have any more questions do give it a watch. Of course comment at him as well for specific questions.

All Points Bulletin AKA APB: Reloaded – Pay To Win on Xbox One / PS4 ???

RealGamerNewz APB Reloaded Xbox One PlayStation 4 PS4

With over 500 hours in APB: Reloaded, I have to be honest – it’s a VERY Money-Grabbing game. Even if you’re premium it begs you to throw down cash for weapons , cars, and XP. You could easily spend 200 bucks on this game and get nowhere if you aren’t careful. The shooting is very ridiculous, you do no damage without certain premium guns. The cars handle like Tonka Toy Trucks on ice. It’s a fun game once you realize how to make money. Otherwise, you’re forever broke.

Check out the following video I made showing off how $15 can’t even get you 1 decent gun in the game on PC at current time of this post (1/25/2015) and for those who have never played the game, give a feel of what to expect. Hopefully the pricing structure is changed for consoles and then given a dramatic price drop on PC as well, though we have doubts that will happen.

Second Opinion:

Electrickrypt of RGN Community: “I grabbed this game when it launched. I Never spent a dime after that and still had hours and days of fun!!! Especially being LANed up next to a buddy. The interaction and customization are amazing. I’ve thought about getting back on it but the cheaters were building up when I stopped playing it. I Never saw it coming to consoles. I Would definitely have to be on the next-generation consoles as big as this game is.”

APB RealGamerNewz Xbox One PS4

“My animated GIF of my crew and I. Good times!”

Update: TheHostileZone Responds to 2nd Opinion:

My issue is you have no friends to play with and what not you’re still very limited to what you can do. If you do purely F2P you are still limited to low XP. If you forget to log in for a bit that gun that took 5K to get is now expired. Also most guns in the game only last 7 days after you buy them, unless you pay for “a lifetime” where it’s still $20 bucks on average for something decent. Yes, you can for sure do only F2P,but that option to P2W is there… Suddenly everyone has much better things than you, even if you’ve synced 500+ hours, you’ll have almost nothing to really show. All that cool doc cars, guns and clothes will be at the tip of your grip tempting you. Don’t get me wrong, there is a special quality of this game that makes it a gem, and sure it’s fun.. But once the pay to win scam is bigger than its F2P model is, I stopped…

April Fools Debunked: moWow Studios Use Prank To Shed Light On Background Bitcoin Mining In Games Without User Consent

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The following is an April Fools Debunked Joke Post:

April Fools Debunked: moWow Studios Use Prank To Shed Light On Background Bitcoin Mining In Games Without User Consent

Scroll to the Bottom for Further Info

There are many ways that gamers can play games seemingly for free these days. These usually lead to a player shelling out some cash for micro-transactions, increased time with certain activities the game offers, or removing other sorts of limitations placed by the developer in hopes players like the game enough to pour cash in and continue on. Alternatively, more pure free-to-play games have simply used advertisements in-game and try to keep players playing, coming back, and telling friends in order to produce as much ad revenue as possible. This is how games like Flappy Bird make money. However, moWow Studios has thought of a new way to do things.

With the advent of Bitcoin many have dived into mining their own, but power consumption issues means these endeavors are not always a winning gamble. Distributed computing has also been seen before with services like Folding@Home on the PlayStation 3 which was used to help solve biological equations for efforts towards curing diseases. Everyone who had a PS3 and opted into this program had their PS3’s computing resources shared for the purpose of this cause.

Now, gamers can help get money to the developer of a game without seeing ads, without experiencing gameplay limitations, and without making purchases of any kind. moWow Studios has chronicled their experience so far on Gamasutra and essentially announced their success to the games industry in having users forfeit computing resources to mine Bitcoin for moWow Studios in the background resulting in the totally free (no strings attached) free gameplay experience being expanded soon at no charge, and the other monetization methods potentially being removed (no ads, yay)!

Full implications to this case have yet to be seen, but the precedence has been set! Take a look at some of the more interesting tidbits of info released by moWow Games:

  • “light launch on the 18th of December last year”
  • “At present, “The Way Home” has earned a little over $3000 via mining.”
  • “around 50 to 100 downloads on a daily basis”
  • “the content that is in the game so far keeps the players active for an average of 2 weeks”

BitCoin The Way Home

Download “The Way Home” for iOS Here

 

[Some Info Sourced: moWow Studios via Gamasutra]

April-Fools-Day

“So why did we choose this topic? Why did we choose the Bitcoin mining in games/apps? Well, here are a few reasons:

  1. Some people have already done this without notifying or telling the users about it. Fundamentally that is wrong. It is even more so when the mining drains your phone’s battery and uses 100% of your CPU and GPU.

  2. After the few incidents that did occur with devs mining Bitcoin without notice (and sadly some are probably still doing it), people will be searching for more info on how to do it (again, sadly). Hopefully, they will come across this post and all your comments on Hacker News / Reddit / Facebook and hopefully refrain from doing such things.

  3. The idea of having a passive monetization mechanic was intriguing to us. We always try and build the game and the monetization/IAPs so that the player’s experience is not interrupted. We hate bad experiences. You are finally enjoying the game and then an ad pops up. Or you’re in the middle of a story and then you need to pay to read the rest.

Bitcoin will not be the answer to our third question, but we are curious whether it is possible in some way for the player (having been fully informed) to trade off some of the processing power of the phone in order to gain money in the game.

The best April Fools’ pranks that we experienced (suffered) were the ones that were half believable. That is why we also chose this topic. You wouldn’t have believed us if we said that we bought EA. No hard feelings.”

Turn 10 Studios Claims Forza 5 Brutal Earn Rate By Accident; Cheaper Cars Update Incoming

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Microsoft has revealed to the gaming world that optional Forza Motorsport 5 DLC cars (pretty much everything you need to complete the campaign in the game) will be reduced in price with a new forthcoming update planned for release free on Xbox ONE’s Xbox LIVE. There will also be a number of additional features added to the game including Drag Racing. Expect more information on this as we have our racing experts on RGN staff analyze the statements put forward by Turn 10 Studios this morning and get to the bottom of what’s really happening beyond the PR spin – only on RealGamerNewz.

**WINNERS ANNOUNCED** Warframe PS4 Platinum Giveaway Sponsored by Digital Extremes + RealGamerNewz

Warframe PS4 RealGamerNewz Platinum Giveaway

***Warframe PS4 Contest Winners announced below and awarded their platinum from Digital Extremes directly to their accounts today!

PSN ID’s of Winners:

– coverby
– ViolentMessiah13
– Jairtheshadow
– daprophecy726
– PAYBACK-IronMan
– SonnyBone

Welcome to the RealGamerNewz and Digital Extremes Warframe PS4 Platinum Giveaway where 10 lucky winners will be named a week from now and receive a direct deposit of 500 Platinum each. Platinum is in-game currency that can be used in Warframe to get the game’s best weapons, gear, and much much more. Warframe is currently an extremely polished Beta which is free-to-play on PlayStation 4 as well as PC. This giveaway is for the PS4 version exclusively.

We have made the Giveaway as simple as possible, just retweet the tweet embedded below, follow us on Twitter, and check your Direct Messages in approximately a week (give or take a few days depending on how fast entries come in). As you can see from our Giveaway Section this is not the first time we’ve done this and Digital Extremes has been extremely (no pun intended) generous and reliable with sponsoring this for all gamers out there looking to experience Warframe at a high level.

All you need is a Twitter account, PS4, and a Warframe account to be eligible. Follow all 3 steps below, and you’re entered. Share with a friend so that if you both win you can play together and engage in very intense co-op action!

Step #1: Retweet the following tweet! (embedded below)

 

Step #2: Make sure you’re following @RealGamerNewz on Twitter! AND CHECK YOUR DM’s!

Step #3: Comment on this article with YOUR   TWITTER NAME.

PRIZE INFO: Contest is for PlayStation 4 Version Only. Digital Extremes (the developer and publisher of Warframe on PC and PS4) will directly deposit 500 Platinum to each Winner. 6 Winners will be chosen by the Editor Staff based on who has the comment we like most and potentially other factors. This contest is open to all countries. You must complete ALL 3 STEPS or you will not be eligible to win.

WINNER INFO: 6 winners will be contacted through Direct Message (DM) on Twitter and has between 12-24 hours to reply or else forfeit their winnings to the next in line. Winners will be announced on this post approximately one week after today’s date (see top of article for date of publication). Be sure to keep coming back to our Giveaway Section.

 

Micro Transactions; The Anaconda of The Industry

Micro Transactions

So the hot topic right now is Micro Transactions and I’m seeing a lot of back and forth going on in the comment threads (as usual) and just decided to put my two cents in on it as well.

This is kind of a hit or miss for me…

I find it acceptable for F2P game-types because you get out what you put in. Game development does take time and money so I don’t expect full games outright for free. If you like what you’ve played of the game you can decide what aspects to buy and how much you put in. Heck if you really enjoy the game and just want to support it you can even kind of think of it as a donation to the people who brought you an experience that you really enjoy.

What I don’t find acceptable is charging the full $60 price on a game and then incorporating this business model on top of it. If you’re going to do this then there should be a $30 – $40 price-tag on the title, because then at least it wouldn’t hurt so bad if you spent another $20 on in-game content. If you’re charging the full price then the in-game unlockables should only be available through some kind of in-game (fake) currency. I do understand that some of these transactions are available through in-game credits (or whatever they choose to call them), but they make them very hard to obtain, trying to lure the player into spending real money for the instant gratification rather than grinding for the in-game achievements. There needs to be a better balance.

This poses a very relevant question for the future of retail titles. Where do we go from here?

If it turns out that everybody buys into the little content on full retail titles this could very well turn into the norm. Oh, it’s just a buck here or $5 here, or $60 for ONE freaking car!? Where does it end? Subscriptions on retail games?

I was genuinely interested in Final Fantasy XIV until I found out it was a subscription based game. I have a bunch of subscriptions at the moment as it is via Netflix and what-not that are already milking my card on a monthly basis as it is, so I just couldn’t justify another monthly expense on a single videogame. At least it is an online only game and it does cost money to keep the servers running, but I can see businessmen seeing that this is a viable means of revenue and trying to implement it as well, just to see if it’ll work.

I’m not criticizing one company or the other on this topic, although one definitely is trying to push this right out of the gate. I just don’t want this to go over because if it turns out it works for one of them it’s just a matter of time before the other follows suit. Vote with your wallets on this one please, I don’t want this to be a standard practice for games that are already over-priced at $60 a pop.

I already have a problem with them charging full-price for digital games, there’s no reason for it at all. They don’t have to ship them, they don’t have to manufacture any of the materials that go along with physical titles, there’s absolutely no reason we should have to pay full retail price on digital games. Period.

NOTE:

I didn’t include DLC into this, because I feel that that is another topic in it’s own right. I also find DLC acceptable as long as it is an actual expansion of the game, not just small in-game items such as armor that should be available in the game in item chests or at item stores, not an actual real world marketplace using real world money.

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Pokemon Developers Send Mixed Messages About Micro-Transactions / DLC

Pokemon Z

While the rumor out in the wild that a Pokemon Z exists, to be released as a delayed segment of a Pokemon X & Y & Z trilogy, Game Freak has made a mixed-message statement in regards to the future of the franchise seeing Micr-Transactions and DLC. On the one hand Game Freak has stated that they never want to sell individual Pokemon (monsters you collect in the game, for anybody that hasn’t played).

On the other hand, the company has expressed that they will continue considering and analyzing the potential for this, while repeatedly mentioning a 100 Yen price. While many are now reporting it as if Game Freak has said they will never do this, that isn’t exactly accurate to what Game Freak has said.

Basically, if they can mention an exact price and express a clear conflict of interest between how they feel in protecting the brand and how they could some day justify 100 Yen for a Pokemon bought with real money rather than collected and leveled up within the game, then it stands to reason all of this didn’t come out of nowhere. Game Freak have actively developed a potential micro-transaction and/or DLC program which they chose not to implement into the franchise at this time. The eventual possibility that it will be worked into the franchise was not denied.

New Tomb Raider Costume DLC Leaked

Whether or not you are a fan of downloadable content, most gamers agree that costume downloadable content is perhaps the least threatening to their world. In the following screenshot slideshow produced by RealGamerNewz we display some controversial images from a leaked DLC planned for release by Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix title Tomb Raider on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC. While some are enjoying the images and can’t wait to try out the costumes themselves, others are of course annoyed that they might need to pay extra to use these skins. Square Enix has yet to comment on the leak.

Halo 4 Devs Contemplating Micro-Transaction System

While 343 Industries and Microsoft Games Studios just released their latest Castle Map Pack today, talk for the future of Halo 4 is already being discussed. The team behind one of the most well received Halo titles since the old school feels that certain Micro-transaction practices being put into place by major publishers are not showing a good road to go down.

With a Halo 4 microtransactions (if put into place) the developers at 343 Industries feel it would be best to stick to gameplay enhancements such as those being sold by Gears of War: Judgement (for example skinned objects in the game rather than new functionality).

There was a time when microtransactions were considered a good alternative to monthly fees and other greedy developer cash-grab behaviors. The gaming industry, however, as well as the gamer community seems to be gravitating to a believe that microtransactions are just as bad as always-online DRM. What are your thoughts on this sweeping trend to charge for the “pretties” as one of my good friends would describe the scenario.