Subscription service for new heroes


#1

I’d like to propose a new revenue model - a subscription service for new heroes.

I think there are a lot of players that have built out their hero roster and are frustrated that the summon gate lottery provides less and less value per $ spent these days.

I’d propose a new model where you can pay $X per month and receive a fixed benefit. Below are just some examples, but things that I would spend money on now that the vast majority of heroes from the summon gate are just expensive fodder I probably won’t buy anymore.

examples (don’t pay too much attention to dollar amounts, they are just placeholders):

pay $50/month and receive the 3 event four-star heroes
pay $150/month and receive the event 4s plus 5s
add $25/month to the $150/month package for the hotm.
pay $10/month and get a guaranteed 4* each month from the standard pool. for $15/month you can pick the color each month

etc.

My guess is you could get a good recurring revenue stream and more long-term revenue viability.


Why I'm considering to quit playing / why I think the game is moving towards p2w
#2

That’s the death of F2P players, right there. If we move from random pulls to guaranteed hero buys, then F2P can no longer compete.

(Maybe that’s not such a bad thing. I don’t pay the devs’ salaries - maybe I shouldn’t be able to compete.)


#3

Hold on…so what you’re saying is that it’s BETTER for the game for people who spend money to get LESS value for their $. ???

My goal with all of this is for MORE people to have stronger teams…also remember that just because you get a bunch of heroes, you still need ascension items to make them viable at all.

So when I’m comparing spenders vs non-spenders, for “non-spender” or F2P, I’m not actually talking about a player who spends absolutely NOTHING. I have zero concern for game balance for anyone who won’t spend a single dollar. The game has grown to the point where if you got rid of every single player who hasn’t spend a dime, the game would have enough players to still be healthy. So in my mind, there’s a different category I call “casual spender” that’s ACTUALLY the bulk of the players (or rather the bulk of the players that I or probably SGG care about, because lets face it, ad revenue for Mystic vision is small compared to the paid portion).

I’m talking about the casual spender…the kind who will buy a $1.99 deal a few times, or a $4.99 deal here and there, or a $4 deal for a 4th ascension item. There’s hundreds of thousands of those types of players.

For those people, who decide to spend a small, but non-zero, amount of money (not me FYI), it sure would be nice to have a more specific selection of things to get. Would you rather pay $25 (roughly the cost of 2600 gems for 10x pull) and have a tiny chance at a 5*, but most likely to get a bunch of 3s and maybe a 4 or two? OR just be guaranteed a 4* or two?

Or what about people who do an initial 10x pull for 2600 gems, get a bunch of Friar Tucks and Valens? If you’re on the fence or a casual player trying to figure out if this game is for you, is that going to make you more or less likely to stay?

If you could pay $10-20/month for 3-5 months and know you were going to get hero(es) that would make your team stronger, as opposed to more friar tucks or Valens, would you be willing to spend that $10? My educated guess is that there’s a lot of folks who either don’t spend because of the lottery nature who would spend a bit to guarantee they improved their team as well as folks who spend a bit early to get some initial 4* and then as their team grows, adding 4*s would help, but they’re basically paying epic/10x pulls and getting expensive feeders.

Then take someone like me - I’ve probably spent more than most…around $700 from Aug 1st through today, but it’s not close to being a “whale” who will spend anything to get every hero. I have all the 4* standard heroes and a bunch of 5*, some very good (Joon, Sartana, Azlar) and some that will never move past level 1 in their current state (Guardian Owl and Kong). For someone like me, continuing my current spending rate would be insane. Dropping $100 or 200 in a month made sense when nearly every 4 or 5 * hero improved my roster. I did 140 event pulls. I got a bunch of 2 Merlins, a bunch of Lancelots, the HOTM and a bunch of really expensive feeders. To me, was that worth the and itunes gift cards it cost for what I got? Hell no. Will I do that again next month under the same system? Hell no. A lot of the players in that similar price range are coming to that realization. I’d be happy to continue spending $100 a month from my entertainment budget if it meant I would get $100 of value.

And less money for SGG means less event content not more, it means fewer heroes, not more. It means longer between map seasons, not shorter.

So my suggestion was not to slow down the spenders getting new things because it’s not fair to people who refuse to pay anything; but the goal behind my suggestion was to give BOTH the casual/low spender AND large (but not whale) spenders a reason to continue spending and continue getting value. This will actually improve game balance because a casual spender getting a new 4 or 5* sees a huge increase in their team’s power, whereas a big spender who has a lot already is basically filling in niche’s. So the casual/low spender will speed up in catching up to large spenders, not the other way around.

Dante

PS: I don’t even consider whales (someone who’s going to drop $1k a month or whatever it takes to get what they want, because they are going to spend what it takes to get what they want).


#4

I’m 100% for value, but 100% against certainty. That’s why I have no problem with certain heroes being exclusively P2W - I’m fine with the notion that payers should have a chance to get something F2P cannot access. But only a chance.

The really appealing thing about E&P as it stands is the randomness. Big spenders can have appalling bad luck and get very little for their money (we know because they all come to the forum to complain). Low payers and F2P, like me (£2.99 total spend), can get lucky and compete.

Your subscription service concept removes any risk for the heavy spender.

Want a team of 5* HOTM heroes? Subscribe to our Platinum Package and they’ll be yours in a heartbeat, guaranteed. Can’t afford our Platinum Package? Subscribe to our Gold Package and you’ll receive a stream of non-HOTM 5* heroes, guaranteed. The more you spend the better your team, with no risk.

I’m not a total idiot - I understand that extremely heavy spenders can achieve this anyway, and that in the long run not even the luckiest F2P players will be able to beat the odds. But to guarantee hero pulls for a price would undermine the essence of E&P for me - the possibility of epic (even legendary) runs of good and bad luck.

Here’s a caveat: I’m not saying your idea would be bad business. It might be great business. I’m just saying that it would be the death of F2P. And I’m serious when I say that might not be a bad thing. Maybe it’s just wrong that F2P can be competitive.


#5

With F2P not being competitive I can guarantee you a big chunk of players would up and leave. There’s plenty of games on the market and plenty of other things to do. So I definitely think F2P not being competitive would be a bad thing.


#6

It’s definitely NOT going to be anywhere near as bad as when the $50-$100/month spender stops spending because there’s almost zero value in it anymore.

The entire idea of true F2P (i.e. getting a benefit for paying nothing at all) is ludicrous anyway. (Like healthcare as right. Goods and services can’t be rights - someone has to produce them and it takes time and effort. Now an advanced society can choose to use some of its limited funds to provide this, but it’s not an un-alienable right).

Same with F2P - someone else is paying for the freeloading and it’s not advertising. We’ve moved past the point in markets where that revenue will pay for a game like E&P without inundating with ads every time you enter a map stage or raid. So as the game matures and the people who are actually supporting the game decide the value isn’t there anymore (which many of us non-whale but $100/month spenders have or are on the fence as there’s very little value anymore in receiving redundant heroes over and over), what revenue is there to support the freeloaders? That’s why I’m suggesting a variety of ways to give people a reason to keep spending. I’m only seeing more and more people who have spent deciding NOT to spend, not the other way around.

And once THAT trend starts (and I’ve seen it in other games), then it will start rapidly moving towards total pay to win, capture the $ before it dies. I’m ok with someone needing to spend $5-10 here and there to be competitive to keep the game alive and new content longer.

There’s also different tiers of “competitive” - you can fully be part of an alliance that beats down 9 and 10* titans without spending a ton. You can move up the ranking and have fun at raiding with people in the same range as you. I think there’s ways to spice the events up too.


#7

I don’t know how it is with match-3 games, but there are games out there that are sustained solely from cosmetic microtransactions. Those don’t even tickle game’s integrity, but are rewarding for spending players. So a game stays entirely F2P while bringing in solid revenue.


#8

I’d be in favor of a game supported by small micro transactions. But there’s no value for that with the current setup, except for something in the $2-4 range that gives an ascension item (think some of the xmas deals), for anyone wtih a moderately developed team. For most ppl in that situation, an epic hero token or event pull is simply another useless 3* fodder or a dup 4*. Once a bunch of the player base moves into the scenario where they spend for a 3x10 pull and get nothing useful, they probably aren’t going to do it again.


#9

I seriously wonder if this game is big enough to sustain itself on cosmetics.

Improvements to the base look, new fancy avatars, hero recolors, fancier skill animations, all the crap like that.


#10

I’d be willing to spend to get rid of specials animations! Some animations are brutal during Titan fights.


#11

<---- that one idiot running Thoth on yellow titans for the lack of better options.

I agree haha.

Also, in raids. When I’m one hit away from doing something good and they just keep CASTING AND CASTING AND CASTING I’m like SHUT THE ■■■■ ALREADY WITH YOUR DUMBASS SKILLS AND LET ME PLAAAAAAAAAY!!!111oneoen111


#12

You derailed my attention before you really got started. Just because a thing has a cost that must be borne by others does not mean that people cannot be entitled to it as a right. There is a cost to freedom of religion, freedom of association, and freedom of speech. There is a cost to education, healthcare, food, shelter and clothing. The civilised world has long since agreed that we all have a right to all these things.

This aside, you might be correct to think that P2W players will not support freeloaders in future. Perhaps the game dying when revenue falls off is just what ought to be expected. Or maybe new players will arrive, eager to pay to play. I guess we’ll find out.


#13

I’m at a similar place as Dante with my hero bench: I have all the 4* (standard and event), all the HotM since I started (Ares forward), and most of the regular and event 5*. The only cards I really care about getting now are Lianna and Guardian Panther, plus another 4* red troop.

SG is going to run into a wall with its business model, at least for players like me. I only do epic pulls now to get the HotM or event heroes. Next month we’ll see a yellow HotM, but he’s got to get in queue with my unleveled Joon, Guinevere, Vivica, Justice, and Leonides. (Musashi is my active 5*) So February’s offering has to be pretty amazing for me to bother buying any gems to try for it, and if we’ve got Pirates again, there’s nothing there I care much about (Kestrel’s nice, but…).

So how will SG extract what I’d be willing to pay next month? They did a great job in December with the daily offers, but they can’t keep that up. The subscription idea has good potential, but I agree with the points above that removing the randomness from the game would ruin it.

So perhaps instead the subscription packs include varying numbers (depending on Silver/Gold/Platinum subscription level):

  • epic hero token
  • epic troop tokens
  • event hero tokens (new item)
  • Epic ascension item token (new item)
  • Trainer tokens (new item)

The event hero tokens should be in the game anyway. They’d work just like an epic hero token, but only in the event pulls. They could be programmed to exclude 3* heroes from the pull as a premium benefit.

The epic ascension item tokens would randomly draw a 3* or 4* ascension item. Maybe you get a scabbard, maybe you get darts.

The trainer tokens would be just like draws from the trainers in the shop, giving a random trainer of some color and some ascension. Because these are premium, 1* might be excluded.

This package keeps randomness but also provides value.

The only alternative I see is to add a new dimension to the game. An idea floated before is to have items that can be equipped to a hero to modify their stats/skills. New content gives seasoned players with deep benches something new to play with—and spend on,


#14

I dunno why the December calendar thing couldn’t be done at least for each of the four seasons. I was totally F2P before that, but the ascension items + gems was too good to pass up. Even with 4 of that same calendar it would take over a year to get all items to fully ascend a 5*, so not really unbalancing anything.

I like your HOTM and ascension items token ideas though. Those would be very tempting offers.


#15

yuhi wish i had computer access this weekend and not just mobile but ah well.

yes that’s exactly what it means. freedom of expression, association, etc. they don’t have a cost. just a slight cost to enforce (ie slight enforcement cost to stop people from infringing on said rights).

thats a vast difference from food shelter healthcare education, which cost a lot of resources to produce. goods and services can not be rights. rights are inalienable. limited goods and services by definition cannot be inalienable because a natural disaster could wipe them out. a natural disaster can not wipe out life liberty or the pursuit of happiness. it cannot wipe out freedom of expression. it can wipe out healthcare. or shelter.

the government could declare that beachfront property for all is a right. that doesn’t mean there’s enough to go around for 330 million americans. it’s a limited good.

no one is entitled to something that someone else has to produce. most countries that try that are not economically able to sustain that.

now that doesn’t mean a country cannot decide that a good or service should be available to everyone. but i has to take resources from one group to ensure goods and services to other groups. that’s not an in-alienable right, it’s just s thing the govt decided everyone should have and we all should pay for. vastly different from freedom of the press, freedom from search and seizure, etc. there’s a reason many countries with large welfare systems can not sustain those systems anymore.

EDIT i’m fairly middle of the road politically and am not trying to troll anyone. and just because i believe something isn’t an in-alienable right, doesn’t mean i think we should have a variety of safety nets or that the current drain of wealth to the upper few percent shouldn’t be mitigated to some some degree.


#16

I’m lost—how does ocean front property relate to E&P subscriptions? You’ve hijacked your own thread, Dante.


#17

I became a paying (spending) player this month…I WILL CHOOSE HOW I SPEND MY MONEY, if they allow subscriptions then I am out of this game.

I want to choose if i spent 99c or $99 and on what. What day and what time of the month I spent it on.

There are a lot of F2P players and their numbers far outnumber paying players. I was a F2P player and I initially spent after I said I would not…how many potential “would-be” spenders would SG lose if all the F2P players leave the game? It is a huge business risk and a financial one.

A lot of people will leave…and this “new - paying” player too.


#18

I think you are quite wrong.

Freedom of religion, association and expression have explicit and painful costs, most obviously visible when a crowd of religious types gathers in a public space to shout at God, or whatever it is that they do. These rights (like any other ‘rights’) are expressly alienable, which we know because for a large part of human history large chunks of humanity have been systematically denied them. Happily, humans are a bit better now than they were - we collectively grant people the right to these things. Mostly.

Similarly, food, shelter, healthcare and education also have a cost, have also been systematically denied to people in the past, and are also collectively granted to people now as of right.

The mere fact that something is scare or costly is no barrier to it being granted as a right. Beachfront property could be declared the right of all people tomorrow and we would then have to share relatively small chunks; the only issue would be distribution. (I don’t think that’s a great idea, by the way, but there is no barrier to it happening.)

What someone is ‘entitled’ to seems more a moral question than a political one, so I’m not sure you really meant to go there, but to say that no one is entitled to something that someone else has to produce is errant nonsense in all senses. It even smells a bit Marxist.

  • The essence of capitalism is that the owners of the means of production are entitled to its outputs, not the people who do the actual producing. If no one was entitled to something that someone else had to produce, then capitalism would be finished.

  • We take money from people (as a proxy for the stuff they have produced) all the time. We call it tax. Society spends it as it sees fit. We often use it to pay the cost of things that we have decided are rights, be it by paying for the police or by funding social housing.

I’m not sure what the countries are with large welfare systems that ‘can not sustain’ them any more. I haven’t visited them. In many countries with an aging population the funding of retirement benefits is a live issue, but the broad global trend is certainly towards expanding social welfare programs, not contracting them.

You’re kidding yourself if you think there are any ‘inalienable’ rights that are qualitatively different from any other rights. Freedom of the press is a terrible example for you to cite. Most countries regard it as strictly limited, subject to the rigid proscription of defamatory content and even to the whims of the government (see the UK’s ‘D notices’, for example). Freedom from search and seizure is another poor example. Many countries have systematised legal programs of random stopping - to breath test drivers for alcohol, for example. Both these ‘rights’ are thus commonly restricted and even alienated from people.

I too am fairly middle of the road, politically, and am not in the trolling business. If anything, I have a slightly Libertarian lean. But it’s clear that rights are just societal constructs, none are ‘inalienable’ and all have a cost that has to be paid.


#19

Guys, we have veered into off-topic Territory. Back to topic please. :wink:


#20

A post was merged into an existing topic: Idea for a New Building - THE MARKET