It is that day. The day, when I act as hypocrite. We all have our sins, so I do not ask for forgiveness, just for acceptance. Maybe even that is too much. I refuse to ask for anything. It is better that way. In any case, you probably wonder what all this is about. Well, Syp was wondering where exactly do we stand on the whole issue of Wildstar's business model. And as someone who really loves the game, but did not buy it ever since it came out of beta, I am a hypocrite. With that said, let us examine what one outsider wishes for the game he never played outside of the open beta.
I have always said I love and wish all best to Wildstar. Mostly because I see competition as a healthy thing, that keeps things interesting. I honestly hoped, quite ludicrously I might add, that Wildstar might even threaten a bit World of Warcraft, and make the behemoth that is Blizzard at least move, and do something instead of just empty campaigns outside of the game that mean nothing to any of us. Well, nothing happened, and it seems the only thing that moves Blizzard at this point, is like always only Blizzard itself. So I was wrong on that front, I can live with that.
I loved the initial leveling experience of the Wildstar, at least the Dominion side of it. I would say I never acquired the taste to play as Exile. It is just so not my cup of tea. I also know that aside from World of Warcraft I am not really willing to pay monthly subscription to any other game. Call it long-term attachment or whatever you prefer. That leaves two other options that I find personally much more to my personal taste.
The first of the two options is changing the model to Free-to-play. As we all probably know, this brings in play the notorious in-game shop. In contrast buy-to-play model like the one Guild Wars 2 has might seem a better option. But then I remember that while Guild Wars 2 is buy-to-play it has a in-game shop nonetheless. Same thing goes for World of Warcraft, and that game has actual subscription fee on top of it. So, in the scenario, that the "evil" that is in-game shop is unavoidable, I will always choose the option that is best for me personally. That means, I wish for Wildstar to go free-to-play. It's not like we didn''t expect it in the same breath as for TESO. Why people in general doubt the success of the game even before it is released is another topic for another time.
Hearthstone, League of Legends have shown how the game can sustain itself with a fair Free-to-play options. EVE Online has shown throughout the years, how you can combat the gold sellers and finance your game at the same time. While I doubt that CREDD of Wildstar can be as successful as PLEX is in EVE, I believe it can close some niches, by introducing new cosmetic items that instead of cold dry cash, demand a ridiculous amounts of gold. You need to keep inflation at bay, and while you cannot keep building ever greater space ships, they could implement something in regard to the housing, and mounts.
This is my answer to what I wish out of Wildstar business model. An honest and fair free-to-play game that will be able to sustain and prosper on the account of more varied crowd, while it lets people to actually experience the game. I cannot talk for the higher levels, but if the questing experience is anything like the initial questing in Deradune it is well worth the time. And such game, I would support. I mean, if I have four different skins for Garen in League of Legends, without counting the rest of them, I am sure I would support Wildstar as well. That said, I will never buy a single thing in World of Warcraft's in-game shop because it is rude, and I don't take kindly to those who double-dip.