This is a bit of an ambitious post but I’d like to throw off my FTP hat for a time and step into the shoes of all players, be it paying players, both cheap and whales, and those who spend $0 and everything in-between.
I’d like to think of this as a neutral post on behalf of all players. You might disagree but let’s see how I go.
Ultimately I want what’s best for gamers and there’s not much point tearing into your fellow player when both of you are after the same thing: fairness from SG.
You’ll note that I said ‘best for gamers’ rather than the game. It might seem like semantics but there is a significant difference, because if you treat all gamers well the game will naturally prosper.
Let’s run through the different categories of our friends on this forum.
If I was a moderately paying player I’d want the value of the heroes I purchased to be fairly consistent over time. I’d appreciate that newer versions of heroes might be somewhat or slightly better but I would not want my say, 2017 HOTM to go completely obsolete.
Ultimately I’d want value for my money and I’d be annoyed if all my spending could be undone by the new kid on the block who could buy a 2020 improved version of Alby, unless I could secure that new hero myself – but the thing is I can’t always secure the new hero so easily. I might have to dump a few hundred dollars to grab the new hero.
If I had A LOT of cash I wouldn’t be that concerned about power creep or obsolete heroes.
I’d only be concerned if my moolah$$ had a limit.
I assume most people here have finite cash for obvious reasons.
If I was a player that survived on deals and waiting for great offers, I’d be thrilled with all the $0.99 and $1.99 deals.
But there will come a point in time, including grim patches when the odds are not so much in my favour, when I might ask: is this spending giving me value for my money and is it worth it?
How do I keep up?
I’d say if you have hung around long enough the answer to this question is more likely to be a “No” or “I’m not sure”
Now you might be the exception but I think a fair amount of CTP ask this question from time to time.
Non-paying players or FTP
Non playing players are OK with reasonable advantages given to paying players but they still want a fighting chance themselves to do respectably
They sometimes hoard gems and wait for the right moment to make their pulls.
They use what they have and they are powerless if their maxed 5* get made redundant by flashier, newer heroes.
They will be frustrated by the lack of rewards for their grinding but there is nothing they can do.
Sometimes they stay in the game resentfully, at other times they do so cheerfully and accept all the game has to offer.
Sometimes they fluctuate between the two moods.
What everyone has in common
If you look at all the groups, the single greatest cause of their misery is really the lootbox.
You can defend the lootbox and say it is a great equaliser – that a noob might randomly be able to draw the best hero on a single pull.
But exceptions to rules do not make good rules.
The odds predict that most of us will not be able to draw the best heroes all the time.
You might also argue that ‘if all paying players have the same heroes that would be boring’.
There’s some truth to this - but which is the greater travesty?
Over-represented heroes or empty wallets?
Similar teams will arguably encourage better use, and strategizing of, heroes. And there will still be a chance for FTP to get good heroes in a non lootbox world, just not as many as they’d like (which is only fair).
The proposed solution
Let’s do away with lootboxes and have more guaranteed rewards - if lootboxes are to play a role in the game they should play a minor role.
If paying players want to pay to get ahead, they should pay for guaranteed rewards and not be forced into a situation where they need to break the bank. Lootboxes are addictive in nature and can cause gambling-style problems. Paying players should not be obliged to spend exorbitant amounts “to protect” the value of their existing investments or spending to date.
If non-paying players want to progress, they should be able to grind their way for guaranteed rewards. They will still be frustrated but I’d argue the frustration will be mild, competition-inducing and even healthy, and not as toxic as would be the case with a lootbox in the game.
The rate of progress for non-paying players should be considerably slower so as to allow paying players to have a decent lead, but it should not be so crippling so as to induce discouragement to the entry level gamer.
After all, entry-level players convert to cheap-to-play players and that is where the money comes from. As @sid1207 observed, C2P probably represent the majority of the market.
I would encourage everyone to think about the big picture - the spending can obviously be quite rewarding but who does it benefit in the end?
The answer is sometimes you but ALL THE TIME Small Giant or Zynga.
And the ‘sometimes you’ is the part that I have a very big problem with. We should always benefit from our spending because money = time = our most precious resource.
Obtaining value for our time and money spent is something all players can identify with and we should put pressure on Small Giant to give us better value.
Nothing may result from this but at least I tried.