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Cosmetic DLCs?

captivatedcaptivated Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
Hey guys,
today I thought a littlebit about the cash shop and I came up with an idea that might improve it in terms of gameplay.

Many of us aren't that fond of purchasable cosmetics, because they are basically unachieved rewards. Though most of us agree that good looks are "fun", I believe that looking good for nothing but some $$ is not fun at all. Purchasable cosmetics are somewhat contradictory to the fundamental design principles of AoC, namely "risk vs. reward" or at least the idea of "reward" in general.

So how could we fix that? How about cosmetic DLCs in which the cosmetic is locked behind a small quest chain or some crafting? Not to big but at least something that needs you to put in some afford. It is not fun for casuals to have great looking characters they haven't spent time with. Cosmetic DLCs could add solo content to the game and it could be fun.

Just think of that: "The legendary sword of Steven the Ducklord". A sword skin DLC to be purchased for 20$ or something. You buy the DLC and than you find a piece of parchment in your characters inventory that tells you about this legendary sword. It was split into three parts by an ancient named "the one that doometh the ducks". Since that sword really seems to be awesome you decide to follow the lead of the parchment to the first piece of the sword. You find it in a cave in the snowy mountains of the dunir dwarfs. You had to kill a big bear that was busy eating some pirates in the cave first though. But you manage to get the blade of the sword, it was wrapped in a scroll that tells you about an orcish statue in the swamp lands. You travel there and you find the statue, but there is no sword piece. All you find is a note that says: "You're too late, it's already mine! The great C.T.M." You have no idea who that is, but you see a random orc close by, so you ask him about that "C.T.M." guy. It turns out that the note and the initials fit to a certain pirate by the name of Clive Tadders McSully. He is no stranger to the Orc. And he is also willing to tell you about McSullys hideout, if you get him a fine bottle of wine and some raptor steaks. So you get the orc what he wants and he marks McSullys hideout on your map. It's on some tropical island. You go there you find McSully, you kill him, loot his eyeball that turns out to be the pummle of the sword and you als loot a key to McSullys chest. Well there is no chest, but a pirate NPC in a cage next to McSullys corpse. You free this guy and he tells you that McSullys chest can be found in the wrack of the "Verra Concordia" that sunk in the riff of the island a few days ago. You go there you get grip & guard of the sword and finally find yourself with all the pieces in the inventory. Last step of the quest chain is now to find a weaponsmith that can put the things together for you. And tadaaa you got your sword.

This story is just a little joke, but I hope you get what I mean. :)

Comments

  • JustVineJustVine Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited June 9
    For future content, I would be totally down with this, especially if the quest writing is actual quality adding to my experience. However this has three flaws:
    1. You will not be able to retroactively go back on the current promised cosmetics. It will not and should not change their investment model because
    2. No one has an idea of Intrepids quest writing quality. You can sell a visual. Selling a story plus a cosmetic for investment only works on the general public if your writing has a good reputation, otherwise they'd have to spoil the story and what good is that.
    3. Lastly and most importantly it costs more to make this way. Not just the writers, but the coders, qa, boss design etc as well! These things have a history in other mmos of having subpar writing as a result of all the extra costs unless its part of a large narrative driven dlc. Screw subpar quest writing or cookie cutter fights in the way of me getting a cool costume in short. That is anti fun. Higher quality experience requires more money and has a high barrier to entry. This third problem happens no matter what investment stage, good writers or not.
  • It is not fun for casuals to have great looking characters they haven't spent time with.

    It's fun for the casual.
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  • ArukoruArukoru Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I have to say, I think your heart is in the right place but you're effectively saying "Hey we don't like content locked behind paywalls, so lets make more content behind the paywall"

    The reason cosmetics are so popular in the gaming world right now is that it gives you a way to extract revenue from the team that doesn't have as much involvement in the game anymore. Art assets are more or less finished by the time a beta rolls around or earlier in some cases so you want to leverage those teams during the time that is most heavily dependent on devs. If you then say we need content around those cosmetics then it is effectively another dev cycle.

    Just as an aside, I think keeping as much gameplay as humanly possible out of the cash shop is preferable. I think you'll get a much nastier reaction as fans feel betrayed by gameplay being locked away in the cash shop after promising it is cosmetic only than you would otherwise.

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  • captivatedcaptivated Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    daveywavey wrote: »
    It is not fun for casuals to have great looking characters they haven't spent time with.

    It's fun for the casual.

    I disagree. It's as much fun as "god mode" in a singleplayer game. People think it's fun, but after less than a minute they realize it's not. It surely increases the revenue of Intrepid, but not the enjoyment of the player base. Also it's not just the casuals but mainly whales that'll buy that stuff, like in every other game. It's totally fine to stand for that. LoL also cashes in with skins. But the "casual" card doesn't work for Intrepids cosmetics the same way it doesn't work for Amazons fast traveling and XP Boost.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Alpha One
    captivated wrote: »
    Hey guys,
    today I thought a littlebit about the cash shop and I came up with an idea that might improve it in terms of gameplay.

    Many of us aren't that fond of purchasable cosmetics, because they are basically unachieved rewards. Though most of us agree that good looks are "fun", I believe that looking good for nothing but some $$ is not fun at all. Purchasable cosmetics are somewhat contradictory to the fundamental design principles of AoC, namely "risk vs. reward" or at least the idea of "reward" in general.

    So how could we fix that?
    That is not something that will be "fixed".

  • Arukoru wrote: »
    I have to say, I think your heart is in the right place but you're effectively saying "Hey we don't like content locked behind paywalls, so lets make more content behind the paywall"

    The reason cosmetics are so popular in the gaming world right now is that it gives you a way to extract revenue from the team that doesn't have as much involvement in the game anymore. Art assets are more or less finished by the time a beta rolls around or earlier in some cases so you want to leverage those teams during the time that is most heavily dependent on devs. If you then say we need content around those cosmetics then it is effectively another dev cycle.

    Just as an aside, I think keeping as much gameplay as humanly possible out of the cash shop is preferable. I think you'll get a much nastier reaction as fans feel betrayed by gameplay being locked away in the cash shop after promising it is cosmetic only than you would otherwise.

    Although I loved the idea at first, I have to agree with Arukoru. Locking actual content behind a paywall, even if the reward is just a cosmetic, does not seem alike a good way to go about this. Also if the content is not that difficult like you suggest, then I don’t see how this idea actually fixes your original issue of people not really deserving purchasable content. Although it might add a little risk to the reward, compared to un-purchasable content it still wouldn’t really be “deserved”
  • CptBrownBeardCptBrownBeard Member, Braver of Worlds, Alpha One
    It's not a bad idea, though I would personally argue for DLC to encompass larger areas rather than individual quests. Having individual quest DLC in Ashes could be problematic as quests are locked behind Node progression. You could pay that money and the quest not pop up for months if it was attached to a node that wasn't being developed enough.
  • It's not a bad idea, though I would personally argue for DLC to encompass larger areas rather than individual quests. Having individual quest DLC in Ashes could be problematic as quests are locked behind Node progression. You could pay that money and the quest not pop up for months if it was attached to a node that wasn't being developed enough.

    There won’t be any purchasable DLCs, at least according to Steven. Thinking about it, that kinda makes this whole forum moot.
  • CptBrownBeardCptBrownBeard Member, Braver of Worlds, Alpha One

    ForlornFly wrote: »
    There won’t be any purchasable DLCs, at least according to Steven. Thinking about it, that kinda makes this whole forum moot.

    Fair point, I may have forgotten that fact for a minute. I'll chalk it up as a hypothetical and call it a day.

  • AtamaAtama Member, Braver of Worlds, Alpha One
    This idea appears to be a solution searching for a problem.
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  • Ya it would be wise if they limit the content put into the store drastically. You pay the customer's good will for money when you do these kinds of things no matter how little you think the stuff in the store is. It got so bad in WoW that players made mods just to spit at players who bought cosmetics in the store.

    The problem for cosmetics bought in the store is that they have no meaning attached to them compared to ones that are unlocked. Even if people have fashion contests and such they are likely to ban store bought stuff anyway. They are rather meaningless.

    The playerbase won't mind if it's done responsibly without pay to win. However, it will turn into a hell in an instant if it's done too much. Even if pay to win isn't in the game it is still taking content out of the base game and putting it behind a pay wall.

    The game not having a box cost only makes it tolerable for so long.

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    U.S. East
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Alpha One
    I guess that depends on who is hosting the costume contest.
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    captivated wrote: »
    daveywavey wrote: »
    It is not fun for casuals to have great looking characters they haven't spent time with.

    It's fun for the casual.

    I disagree. It's as much fun as "god mode" in a singleplayer game. People think it's fun, but after less than a minute they realize it's not. It surely increases the revenue of Intrepid, but not the enjoyment of the player base. Also it's not just the casuals but mainly whales that'll buy that stuff, like in every other game. It's totally fine to stand for that. LoL also cashes in with skins. But the "casual" card doesn't work for Intrepids cosmetics the same way it doesn't work for Amazons fast traveling and XP Boost.

    You are trying to tell other people (an entire group of people; all casual players) what they do and do not find fun.

    Before carrying on with the thread, ask yourself if you think that us a great idea.

    Now, to me, it would be more fun to casual gamers in general if they could get the look they want, and then spend their time in game doing what ever activity it is they enjoy doing.

    If it turns out that the activity they enjoy doing is spending time and effort to gain in game looks, they are still able to do that if they want.

    However, if what they want to do is harvest all the goal lumber they can find - and *only* oak lumber, then they can do that while still looking good.

    I am unsure what basis you have for claiming that people would only think it is fun for a few seconds, as being able to buy a look you like literally allows people to just do what it is they find fun.
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