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Mechwarrior Online 2021: Monetization

2021 monetization

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#101 AnAnachronismAlive

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Posted 21 November 2020 - 08:00 AM

# Monetization

Disclaimer: On-going work-in-progress trying to sort and conclude the input given here until now and furthermore: so keep on posting! In case you have proposals / notations aiming to improve the following assumptions or correct misinterpretations: feedback is very appreciated as long as it is provided in a structured and expedient manner - yes, even if this means to agree on what is „expedient / a general goal“ at all. Furthermore the english language ain’t my mother tongue, so lingual flaws can not be ruled out. Feel free to correct misleading descriptions.

General Remarks:
With a (rightfully deserved) scepticism rooted deep in most parts of MWOs community grounded in decisions PGI has taken in the past, transparent, public and goal-oriented communication between the parties involved (between PGI and the playerbase left / still interested in broadest sense), feels essential for the future of MWO (sim-shooter in the BT-Universe).
Since PGI seems to be in a state of risk-averseness or feels like having run into some sort of strategic dead-end (for reasons one can (only) assume), the creation of revenue – or to be more speficic – a reasonable ratio between investment and revenue on side of the producer and meaningful content subsequently adding to the joy the core-game-mechanics provide for the consumer feel crucial.

Assuming PGI is not in funds / does not have the financial ressources for significant amounts of advance investments anymore, low-risk with moderate-reward improvements seem to be the most likely / promising short-term measures for NOW that could generate the revenue needed to fund further mid- to long-term improvements - therewith hopefully creating some kind of a sustainable upward-spiral of a content-revenue-cycle again.

So whatever potential area of improvement (and there are a lot for sure) is discussed here, will likely profit from a general mind-set tuned to an assessment of a measures impactfulness for the (potential) playerbase and revenue possibilites for PGI.
The assumption of the upcoming steam-release of MW5 spillin‘ some (new) folks onto MWOs shore again, underlines the necessity of being prepared to absorb as much of these „potential drop-ins“ into the existing playerbase as possible while creating worthwile content for the veteran player at the same time.

General question in terms of monetization seems to be what audience groups can be catered with what kind of content while creating a reasonable amount of revenue short-, mid- and long-term? Would it help to assess the following „archetypes“ to be applicable and check single areas of improvement for their potential? Just trying to provide some simplified identification of audience groups allowing to roughly scetch potential motivations and adequate measures here (feel free to refine!!!).

======================================================|

Mech-Packs (see MWOComp-Document)
General Remarks: Revise overall mech-pack and mech pricing!

======================================================|

Lore-Based Mech-Packs [Source: Will9764 – Post #104]
Some people play MWO for and/or with a heavy lore-infused / house-affiliated degree of motivation (at least in their early days /in the beginning). As proposed by Will9764 (see #104 for details) the introduction of faction-based mech packs containing one faction-iconic mech of each weight class (+mechbay) and one (existing or to be implemented - hello new content!) hero-mech (+mechbay) might/will very likely serve this kind of interest. Add a reasonable amount of faction fluff items (Paint-job, colors, items, etc.), a reasonable amount of GSP and make it reasonably priced => there you go! Might furthermore imply revenue potential by adding faction-based match announcements / general sound packs and/or other faction-related stuff.
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    All audience groups with some degree of lore/faction affiliation not being in ownership of that concent. Other audience groups interested in specific parts oft he pack (interesting hero-mechs, certain fluff-items).
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Low to low-medium, since most ressources are already implemented in game already. Additions (faction-specific heroes, new fluffaudio-files etc.) seem not very ressource-intensive.
  • Resume:
    Low investment, medium to high reward.
======================================================|

Starter Mech-Packs [Source: Original Source Unknown – see MWO-Comp Document]
New / starting players often have a hard time in terms of judging the general performance potential of their first mech bought / builds and therefore with earning the reasonable influx of c-bills needed to keep playing while more likely losing than winning in the beginning. Might lead to some degree of frustration and make new players quit the game as worst possible outcome. As proposed somewhere (Original Source unknown – see MWOComp-Document), the introduction of one or more cheap priced starter mech pack(s) containing one solid mech of each weight class (+mechbay) might/will likely attract new players. Add a small amount of fluff items (Greenhorn-PaintJob or Cadet-PaintJob, Greenhorn- or Cadet-Items, etc.), a small amount of GSP, a medium amount of C-Bills to allow some modifications and there you go. Might furthermore imply revenue potential by adding status-based match announcements / general sound packs.
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    New / fresh players. Other audience groups interested in specific parts of the pack (Items, Paint-Jobs, Sounds).
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Low to low-medium, since most ressources are already implemented in game already. Additions (Paint-Jobs, Items, new audio-files etc.) seem not very ressource-intensive.
  • Resume:
    Low investment, medium to high reward (depending on degree of advertisement, placement).
======================================================|

Themed Packs [Source: Original Source Unknown - see MWO Comp-Document]
The introduction of thematic packs (whatever theme sounds applicable – encourage a discussion about what seems suitable/adequate first!) seem to be a general possibility to generate revenue even though very likely depending on the quality / content single theme packs provide. Certain fluff-items, camos and paint-jobs may do the job here. Might furthermore imply revenue potential by adding status-based match announcements / general sound packs.
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general (like completionists etc.) if interested in the pack / interesting packs in general.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Low-medium, assuming that appealing (!) camos, decals and paint-jobs gotta be created first, while minor ressources may be implemented in game already. Can’t be about „Re-cycling“ stuff only. Can not judge upon ressource-intensity.
  • Resume:
    Low-medium investment, uncertain (IMHO) reward - depending on degree of advertisement, placement).
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Improve(d) Cockpit (Bonus) Items [Source: Original Source Unknown - see MWOComp-Document]
Improvement of already existing or creation of improved Cockpit Items is very likely gonna be a well received and sought after source of monetization. Several boni that come to mind easily / exist already are: C-Bill-Bonus (X Percent), MechXP or GeneralXP-Bonus (X Percent), Faction-Reputation-Bonus (X-Percent) or even a combination of such. Existing faction or even any cockpit items (standing and hanging) could be adjusted (changing colors between faction color and gold for C-Bills; changing colors between faction color and [insert color here] for GXP, etc.).
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Low-medium, assuming that appealing items gotta be (re-)created first. Can’t be about „Re-cycling“ stuff only. Can not judge upon ressource-intensity.
  • Resume:
    Low-medium investment, medium to high reward likely.
======================================================|

Voice Packs (Bitchin‘ Betty, Announcers etc.)
Creation of custom soundpacks for bitchin‘ betty (more likely) or other in-game voice acting (less likely IMHO – mebbe minor exceptions like faction- or solaris-based announcements etc.) could be some source of monetization. This will hugely depend on the immersive quality or catchyness singular soundpacks are able to provide.
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Low-medium, assuming that appealing soundpacks gotta be created first. Can not judge upon ressource-intensity.
  • Resume:
    Low-medium investment, medium reward likely.
======================================================|

Supporter Packs - Source: NuttyRat #17)
(Tournament Packs, MWOComp-Packs, Team-Packs, Streamer Packs, Tutor Packs)
Packs granting a title, iconic decals, colors, items and sounds (like warhorns that make streamers, popular players or MWO-memes comment once ye achieve a kill or alike) that show, you are a pillar of the MWO-community by supporting one of this game’s many branches. Part of revenue created with these packs going into price buckets, to streamers, content generators or new player tutors. Adds a social pull-factor / value that could make people buy such packs. Get some prestigeous fluff-items while supporting the MWO-Community and create revenue for PGI too!
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general, team-afficionados, consumers of community content.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Additions (Titles, Items, new audio-files etc.) seem not very ressource-intensive.
  • Resume:
    Low investment, high reward likely.
======================================================|

Bolt-On Overhaul / Creation of appropriate Bolt-Ons (Military themed and heraldic items) [Source: MW Waldorf Statler – Post #58]
Adding military themed bolt-ons (like searchlights, armor-plates, transport- & ammo-boxes)? Placing heraldic items (like shields etc.) to show off your allegiance? What a no-brainer with endless monetization possibilities! Do it! DO IT --- but don’t you dare em to fall off when touched by a tag! Placing immersive / heraldic items (no, not necessarily more of that exaggerated solaris stuff, but something more appropriate in terms of being part of a military force! Great idea!
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general, lore-enthusiasts, folks with interest in individualization.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Might be a little ressource-intensive, since „floating“ items ain’t very immersive, prestigeous or nice to look at.
  • Resume:
    Medium investment, high reward.
======================================================|

New Hero-Mech(packs) [Source: Original Source unknown]
Adding new Hero-Mechpacks (more heroes of existing in-game variants) will add new toys to the „store“ people can spend some money / MC on. Try to make / quirk em unique somehow, so there is more incentive to buy them (like some mobility and REAL-jump orientied assault or whatever smart stuff you / the community can think of or that lore has already sketched out a little). People are starving for new mechs (even if heroes only), so it seems to be a short-term solution to create revenue with low cost.
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general, veteran-players and completionists.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Low to medium, since you got the mech-models already.
  • Resume:
    Low to medium investment, high reward.
======================================================|

Steampacks [Source: Original Source unknown]
Lots of people (new players especially) might be a little defensive about third-party / credit card payments via the games website. Why not taking the quick buck, if ye can? Impulse-purchase are severely interdicted by being in need of checking out (suboptimal) webshops first. So even though steam is taking a (big?) share of the sales happening there, the assumed plus of people buying MWO-stuff promoted directly over the steam-interface might still be worth it (like the new player packs, fluff-items packs etc.). Was the Solaris Hero Pack such a bad deal for PGI? Some sort of „One(Trusted)Shop-One(Trusted)Stop“-principle applies here too, not?
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general, new players.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    More a question of negotiations (legal + pricing) than coding-work.
  • Resume:
    Unclear degree of investment needed, constant influx of revenue expected.
======================================================|

(Client-Based) Custom Colors for UI, lasers weapons, etc. [Source: Original Source unknown]
Comparably miniscule/small changes with unclear monetization effects. May add some fluff / individualization options while being not ressource-intensive at all.
  • (Unique) Selling Proposition for:
    MWO-audience in general, completionists.
  • Degree of ressources needed:
    Nil to low, can not judge upon the coding-work though (replace some numbers and potentially implement some selection buttons in-game / options).
  • Resume:
    Nil to low, medium reward likely.
======================================================|

Edited by AnAnachronismAlive, 23 November 2020 - 07:05 AM.


#102 AnAnachronismAlive

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Posted 21 November 2020 - 08:07 AM

Blocked for reasons ... max typos etc

Edited by AnAnachronismAlive, 21 November 2020 - 08:07 AM.


#103 Will9761

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Posted 21 November 2020 - 07:59 PM

If there is any type of Bundles I would like to see added to MWO, it would have to be one based on the primary factions. Have 4 mechs from light to assault that has been produced by or used heavily by the IS and Clan Factions. Along with a hero mech based on what faction their pilots comes from. The faction mechs would have a Faction Skin and Faction Letter to it as a Default with C-bill boost. ([D] for Davion for example).

Here is what the Faction Pack would consist of:
  • 4 Faction Produced Mechs or Mechs commonly used by the factions with a Faction skin from light to assault.
  • 1 Hero Mech Based on the Faction
  • 6 Faction Colors
  • Faction Decal
  • 5 Mech Bays
  • 30 Days Premium Time
  • Faction Based Cockpit Items (Standing, Hanging and Warhorns)
For an example of a faction mech, here is the Davion Enforcer. notice that the Davion skin is its default and it has the (D) tag:



Posted Image

The Faction tag even shows on your HUD:
Posted Image

Here are some examples I made if you want to look at what faction bundles could look like:

Inner Sphere Faction Bundles







House Davion
Spoiler






House Liao
Spoiler






House Steiner
Spoiler






House Kurita
Spoiler






House Marik
Spoiler






Free Rasalhague Republic
Spoiler





Clan Faction Bundles







Clan Ghost Bear
Spoiler






Clan Jade Falcon
Spoiler






Clan Smoke Jaguar
Spoiler






Clan Wolf
Spoiler

Edited by Will9761, 23 November 2020 - 11:46 AM.


#104 Void Angel

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Posted 22 November 2020 - 12:25 PM

View PostSheridan Mackison, on 16 November 2020 - 07:11 PM, said:

Player designed decals for a “small” fee. Include the ability for each member of a unit or friends to share decal files.


A nice idea, though you'd have to implement some kind of limiting factor to prevent everyone's custom decals from bloating the game files. PGI could take a page from League of Legends and create decals for the top teams in the annual tournament, or hold an event with a decal design as the prize.

View PostLordNothing, on 18 November 2020 - 05:39 AM, said:


mostly in the form of reduced grind.

there are also other things you can boost besides cbills and xp. idk why the solaris pack didnt have acc bonuses for example. make it easier to grind for bolt ons. fp packs should come with rp/lp bonuses. you could sell merc themed packs with rp (say the gray death legion color scheme from the locust/shadowhawk heros), and faction themed packs with lp. you might also have a bonus to supply cache progress.

i think that players who have contributed a certain dollar amount to the game should reach a point where everything else the game has to offer is grindable. even stuff you would normally have to pay for. its anti whale, but those people probably own everything they are going to buy by now, pgi isnt exactly making content anymore.

im to the point where i feel i have contributed enough monetarily to the game where the only things i will consider buying are low dollar impulse buys, for which there are none. the ones you need to get to buy stuff are the ones who haven't spend a dime yet (see my posts about initial buy-in bonuses). i think it would be an important goal for funding if you could convince everyone who hasn't to buy at least one mechpack. and you do that with strong grind reducers that everyone who has bought their first thing gets.


Creating low-money impulse buys might also be indicated. =)

#105 Will9761

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Posted 22 November 2020 - 03:28 PM

I'm glad that Clans: Nova Cat, Steel Viper, and Diamond Shark are in the game, but they deserve their own paint schemes for clan mechs. These are the colors and Galaxies they should be based on. I mean hey, MWO already has their Cockpit Items, decals, mechs and icons, so they should go the whole nine yards with the reserve clans.

Clan Nova Cat Pattern:
Alpha Galaxy - Victory over Delusion
Colors: Nova Cat Black, Nova Cat Blue, Nova Cat White
Although the SnowFall pattern does a decent job representing the Alpha Galaxy theme, it wouldn't hurt to see MWO's interpretation of the Nova Cat's Alpha Galaxy's scheme.
Posted Image

Clan Diamond Shark Pattern:
Sigma Galaxy - Fox's Welps
Colors: Diamond Shark Aqua, Diamond Shark Blue, Diamond Shark Green
For this scheme it should have a water pattern to it like rolling surf or clear water for an aquatic tone.
Posted Image

Clan Steel Viper Pattern:
Beta Galaxy - Steel Fang Galaxy
Colors: Steel Viper Metal, Steel Viper Light Green, Steel Viper Dark Green
Posted Image

Edited by Will9761, 23 November 2020 - 10:47 AM.


#106 AnAnachronismAlive

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Posted 23 November 2020 - 07:08 AM

Need some input on the summarizing #Monetization post please. Certain points missing since their source was in threads I have not seen yet? Structure sub-optimal? Of value anyhow or without need? Please make substantial (!) suggestions to improve it.

Wanna go on to the next topic with a similar structure, but only after having refined this ... don't wanna overhaul more than one thread. Thank you!

Edited by AnAnachronismAlive, 23 November 2020 - 07:36 AM.


#107 Kodan Black

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Posted 23 November 2020 - 07:30 AM

What about an optional subscription model where for $1/mo - $10/mo you have different tiers where you get stuff. Could be it starts at C-Bills and as you add more to what it costs per month you get stuff like premium time, 1 color per month, 1 cockpit item per month, etc. Nothing game changing, but little perk stuff. Could even make it so your full 12 months gets you something at appreciation time.

#108 Surn

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Posted 23 November 2020 - 10:53 PM

Since I only posted the Survey in General, I want to point out that 73.5% of respondents would do an optional subscription based upon various prices and features.

That is a completely unedited number, and there were 53 instances of people saying that they would not subscribe. The number 53 includes duplicate anonymous posts. So the actual percentage is likely around 85%

Basic Subs most common answer was $4.99 @ 19.5%

Basic Subs for $2.99 represented 17.5%

Basic Subs for $10.99 came in 3rd at 12%

Premium Subs for $10.99 was the most common @19%

Premium Subs for $9.99 were 12.5%

Premium Subs 3rd most common was $2.99 @ 11%

#109 Guile Votoms

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Posted Yesterday, 05:33 AM

Improve the base game, iron out performance issues and streamline the messy UI so more paying customers start playing your game?

#110 VileKnight

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Posted Yesterday, 07:49 AM

View PostDaeron Katz, on 16 November 2020 - 12:51 PM, said:

In this thread, lets discuss ideas for updating or adding to our current monetization model in MechWarrior Online, such as:
  • New Player Packs
  • Starter Packs (Brawling, Long Range, Heavy)
  • Themed Packs (Pop Culture, NASCAR)
  • New Items (Metallic Patterns, Custom UI Colors, Voice Packs, Sound Packs, Laser Color Customization, MechLab Customization, Global Patterns)
  • Improve Cockpit Item Bonuses (added value)

  • I know this isn't on the list here, but an option I would like to see is the ability to add a unit decal. Most long time units within MWO maintain (or used to) some level of web presence that included a unit decal for use outside of the MWO game. I think giving units the ability to upload a logo - that needs to be approved by PGI - that we can throw on our mechs would be very well received.
  • Themed Mech packs - this could be neat. Perhaps more valuable to people who have a smaller stable of mechs, but something like say a faction specific mech pack would be pretty good to have on rotation.
  • Metallic paints. Yes please! Personally, I would love to see this be a thing.
  • Voice/Sound packs - This would interest me personally, but if PGI did this, I must strongly advise that PGI leave people alone who are already using some of their own. It would create a huge backlash if you punished people who are using some of the packs that are available around the community. That being said, if PGI came out with some highly polished packs that improved upon what we have out there - or maybe some new stuff all together - I think this would be well received.
  • Custom laser colors - Could be cool. Low effort or dev hours for the swag, right?
  • Mechlab customization - I'd like to see some examples from PGI before we went too far down this road. Now, there have been some cool examples of new UI's that I have seen from the community that I think would be nice. Overall, I think the UI needs a facelift, and the idea of charging for that is not one I am keen on. Perhaps PGI could provide some clarification on this one?


#111 Lieutenant Hedgehog

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Posted Yesterday, 09:52 AM

I'd love to know what the monetization model looks like and how well it works.

My biggest concern as a new player is that the game feels costly.
There are many games out there which cost less $$ for greater value.

I've spent over $150 at this point -- premium time, colors/patterns, mech bays -- so it WORKS to some extent, for sure!
Of COURSE, free-to-play but pay-for-perks makes sense.

It's more that $7 (USD -- $10 CAD) gets you one Premium color, or one Premium paint scheme.
Where in something like FortNite, $10 CAD you're getting a new skin and weapon skins and accessory skins.
PLUS you unlock additional skins as you play.
So I think there's a few ways the value could be improved.

I think a subscription model could work really well.
Maybe reduce overall MC costs for most items, but add a subscription option to subsidize that change in revenue.
I would definitely pay for a subscription if it included some things like colors, patterns, mech bays and other bonuses.

#112 Marshal Jim Duncan

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Posted Yesterday, 06:44 PM

I literally have no incentive to spend money on this game. I have purchased every variant I want, and sold the rest and between the amount of XP, GXP, banked premium time, C-Bills and SP and {LT-MOB-25}-pit items I have I can just wait until a new variant is released to c-bills to buy and skill it out.

However, what I do miss is when mech packs were released with early adopter variants that you can't buy any other way. It would be nice to bring that back. I actually really enjoy having the uniquely designed/configured variants.

I do like the idea that was posted earlier about being able to select the variants for the tier level you are purchasing.

#113 Krucilatoz

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Posted Today, 12:08 AM

I wonder why no one ever mentioned about Regional Pricing.

Yes, this may be unknown / unheard of for most most EU / US player (or AU).
But for 3rd world citizen like me that will be a huge factor.
I bought mech pack such as Solaris heroes and performance pack because on Steam, it was a very reasonable priced.
And some of my friends (RL) bought it too.
Hope this will be on your consideration

--
oh, and subscription model for new map is also OK

#114 MW Waldorf Statler

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Posted Today, 02:42 AM

Quote

[color=#CCCCCC]Custom laser colors - Could be cool. Low effort or dev hours for the swag, right?[/color]


in Battletech the Laser Colors binded to the Laserclass

#115 Shamansky

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Posted Today, 02:59 AM

I acually like the subscription model of the SWTOR, where if you pay $ per time, you use all options the game can provide and get local 'MC' on per month basis, those 'gold coins' can be spent on new cosmetic features that are being released regulary. You can also play for free and buy all or any options you want/need (if any).

#116 Elizander

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Posted Today, 04:14 AM

Starter Packs
  • Should have steep discount on first purchase. Goal is to have an interested new player buy in to get invested. This should be considered a foot-in-the-door purchase or the shop's Welcome mat.
  • Starter Pack can be a variety pack that covers all 4 weight classes and the majority of the roles.
  • Mechs can be normal variants, but should have 30% c-bill bonuses.
  • Each mech should come with 91 SP. (You are banking on them enjoying the game and wanting to get more mechs so it should give a good first impression of how the game really plays). If possible, allocate the points to a decent build including the usual 60% radar derp and etc.
  • 25 pieces of each C-bill consumable item.
  • 3-8 supply caches
  • All builds should have 1 AMS + 0.5 tons AMS ammo if possible to minimize the noobs dying to lurms issue. More noobs with pack, more AMS, less noobs dying to lurms.
  • New players have no f***ing clue with the skill tree. Unlock all the nodes for these mechs. They will make mistakes. Don't make them suffer for it after paying you money.
  • Each mech fully upgraded with loadout for specific role.
  • Camo + Colors (preset or let them pick 3)
  • 4-8 dekkels.
  • One bolt-on per mech, pre-installed
  • One cockpit item per mech, pre-installed
  • 7 days Premium time
  • Send them an email after purchase thanking them and include with links to guides, communities and etc. Notify them after puchase in-game to check their email. If the mechs are set, you can solicit short guides for each chassis to include as video links or just text guides/tips.
Again, the goal of this is to get upfront payment and open up wallets while giving them great value in return. I feel like $50 or more would be too high and somewhere around $39.99 might be the best compromise, but that's just me. If you can go lower than $39.99, great, but it breaks down to (in the mind of a customer), getting 4 pimped out mechs for 10 bucks a pop.

With this, you're hoping that they'll enjoy the game enough to either buy more later or stay as free content to keep your queues popping.

Off the top of my head, the 4 types of builds should be something like:
  • Dakka ( Heavy / Assault )
  • Laservom ( Any )
  • Lurm with TAG/BAP (Medium / Heavy, BAP to avoid confusion that will happen when they are in ECM range)
  • Brawler ( Any )

I think that Gauss / PPC should be left out of the starter builds due to charge-up mechanic and PPC requiring too many things (heat management, weapon familiarity with velocity/range to hit, etc).

Edited by Elizander, Today, 05:16 AM.


#117 MW Waldorf Statler

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Posted Today, 07:51 AM

Concept ideas for more Military looking Bolt Ons like Armored Versions or Commando versions



Posted Image

Posted Image


Posted Image

Edited by MW Waldorf Statler, Today, 11:34 AM.


#118 Horseman

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Posted Today, 10:13 AM

View PostMW Waldorf Statler, on 25 November 2020 - 07:51 AM, said:

Concept ideas for more Military looking Bolt Ons like Armored Versions or Commando versions

TBH that's what I originally thought the bolt-ons were going to be.





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