Once we cleaned the Kickstarter blood off, it was time to reflect. We gathered an INSANE amount of data and feedback before, during and after our Kickstarter. We took time to really study the data and identify all the issues that stopped us from success. These issues, which I've dubbed piranha, are what held us back, or metaphorically speaking, ate us alive. We are making some very large changes to kill as many of those piranha as we can. I will be detailing those changes in this article. This is going to be a long read so get cozy.
Piranha #1 - Presentation
We've already addressed this but it's worth repeating. We failed to bring our A game to Kickstarter and there is already much being done to remedy that. We are reviewing everything from the ground up and nothing is safe from our prying eyes. We will be leaning heavily on our forum members to review a lot of our content before we launch it on Kickstarter. I can't say in what context that will be yet but many of you gave us some great advise last time ... after we launched the Kickstarter and many people already came by and never looked back. We need to put our best foot forward and will need all the help we can get in getting there.
Piranha #2 - Pay Model
We've heard just as much chatter against subscription model as we have perma-death. We've endlessly studied just about every game that had, has, or will have a subscription model. I think I've driven Loestri and Varl mad with the amount of times I've asked we discuss the matter. We've built libraries of spreadsheets covering all possible pay models, hybrids of said pay models, and even some new ideas that we haven't seen anywhere yet.
At the end of it all, in today's MMO market, the subscription model is a very risky endeavor. It is a continual barrier-to-entry for your customers, and given today's saturated market, it's no wonder so many have moved away from it. So with all this talk about pay models, you probably know what's coming.
Yes, we are changing our pay model.
No, it will not be Free-To-Play.
We are changing to the Buy To Play (B2P) model with a few small twists. Since we will never have expansions that you purchase, the game will come with a limited number of character slots for the whole game (not per server) with the ability to purchase more. It will also come with the humans and raknar as standard playable races. As we introduce other races, you can either unlock them in-game by completing certain tasks, or you may purchase a race unlock.
We are also going to have a cash shop. Hold on, let me explain before you go grabbing those torches and pitchforks! Our cash shop will have two rules I will make sure it abides by:
#1) No Pay-To-Win items allowed.
#2) Must work with, not against, the innovation system.
We are flat out against any pay-to-win items. We are just as adamant about not cannibalizing our own innovation system since it is core to the organic growth of TerVarus. We feel very confident we can offer many items that abide by both rules. For example, we always want you the player to receive innovations through the game, such as a new armor set. That should be your fun to be had and equally available to all players to receive. Where the cash shop comes in, in this example anyway, is allowing you to purchase particular colors of armor stain. The armor stain would allow you to dye X number of armor pieces with what would otherwise be an unavailable color.
Another example would be custom body parts. A particular horn style for dragons, different wings for pixies, and so on. All vanity, no advantage.
Piranha #3 - Perma-Death
First, relax, perma-death is staying right where and how it is.
As many of you know, this has been the feature that has made more people run for the hills than any other. We believe we have a solution for those that love everything about ToA sans perma-death.
A non-perma-death server.
This way, much like the single character and multi-character servers, each of you can decide on the flavor of ToA you wish to play. The biggest concern on your mind might be all the top-end bloat a non-pd server will surely incur. We've thought of that. Each death on the non-pd server will result in full looting permissions of all gear, some skill loss, some magic symbol loss, and even some age reversal (for those races that age). These separate rule-sets would require relatively minor codes changes so the overhead in both coding and updating can remain sustainable for us.
It all boils down to your preference - play on the PD server if you want a character that only gear loot upon each death but eventually losses everything, or play on the non-PD server if you want a character that lives forever but suffers a setback with each and every death.
NOTE THAT WE ARE ONLY ENTERTAINING THE IDEA OF A NON-PD SERVER AT THIS MOMENT. We'd love to hear your feedback and maybe even reach out to those not from our community to see what they have to say!
Everything above is meant to broaden our niche thereby appealing to enough gamers so we may fund the project, all while not compromising to deliver the game we have promised and been steadfast about all these years.
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