When I started playing MMOs in 2012, the hot debate for the time was subscription and free-to-play business model. However, over the last 10 years, that conversation has almost disappeared as the subscriptions became more or less a means of getting extras like experience and credit-making boosts. Game studios have found other ways to support the product or to milk the customers, depending on their greed and desperation.
Play the World of Warships for freeAt the moment I play the free version of the World of Warships title, that contains many tools to generate a brand-new monetization. On the one hand, I’ve been long a fan of allowing players to decide how they play financially. However, upon Wargamings recent implementation of the battle pass within Warships, I began to measure the varying ways that players could (sometimes and surprisingly) spend money on the game. How much straw can that camel carry in anyway?
Let’s take a closer look at this current revenue stream: the battle pass.
The battle pass is the same as the daily and weekly missions designed to encourage daily match participation. Functionally, things haven’t been very much changed. Under the old model, players would complete a mission cycle and receive rewards soon after they complete. Using battle pass, daily and weekly missions still exist, but rewards are battle pass points that improve the battle pass rewards. The big change is that there are three levels of the battle pass: 1) free version with rewards roughly similar to the old repeatable mission system, 2) paid tier with prices for 10 and higher, and for $25 and includes free and enhanced rewards, plus several in-game bonuses. The third tier is more like a modern subscription in an MMO.
The odd thing is, Warships had already a subscription entitled to a premium-time subscription, and Wargaming has explicitly stated that the battle pass isn’t a substitute for that system. For 10 US dollars per 30 days, premium time in World of Warships earns ten dollars for ship experience, free experience, command experience, and credit earner. Personally, I always considered premium time requirement for anyone seriously playing the game a prerequisite since the tech branch is very expensive without it. To pay for premium time, with the top-tier battle pass, I find a subscription to the free-to-play game cost $35 per month.
What about a la carte menu? Right now, there are 97 premium ships that can be bought by real money in the Warships in-game store, some of which can be purchased through in-game resources. They cost between $8 and 7 dollars for the game of Tachibana, and 8 dollars for the game of the game 3.
Contrary to that, most premium ships are not pay-to-win buttons in the form of an objectable boat that is more effective than other of the same tier. There have been many overpowered ships in the past, but most of these beasts have been removed from sale and now only via special auctions or seasonal random containers. Wargaming tried to aspire to the right to balance the game, while also profiting from the limited number of ships that have failed to find a way to bleed longtime players of their overabundance of currencies. The advantage of premium ships in 2022 is a unique playstyle, a permanent bonus package that allows for once again to boost resource yield and freedom to take captains to and from the ship without a skill retraining penalty.
The Black Friday is the typical Black Friday occasion of Warships that sells current and discontinued ships on black basis. The black ships have a decent black camo, and are slightly discounted from the black versions of the black ships. Most of the black ships are entirely different from originals, with the addition of a standard and black version of the same ship in a port or even more disappointingly to a player who acquired the normal version of a ship to win the black version of the same ship in a drop. Possibly, Wargaming tries to take over the player (and maybe even coax them to buy the same two versions of the same ship) with an extended mission chain that awards small numbers of doubleoons when completed.
Wargaming sat down heavily in 18 months to sell new access to tech tree ships. Tech trees usually are earned by grinding through the tiers of ships available in the world in which a tech tree is not picked up in real currency. When the new tech tree lines released, Warships hosts a quick access event that allows players to complete the mission chain before they get to some of the lower tier ships early (before they can be obtained by grinding).
But a mission can only be unlocked to a certain level of achievement through in-games. A token can’t be used to the purpose of the game. In essence, players are paying to get their hands on a high-end ship and no other player can obtain it for free. For the new Japanese light cruiser event, players would have to complete the free chain missions, spend some money (though it’s difficult to calculate how much event currency the money in time and resources are available) to unlock the four unattainable chain bundles and then buy the tier 10 ship from the end of the chain for just $80 US all for a ship that can be obtained for free within a few days.
I have written about dockyard events in Warships earlier, so I won’t detail a lot about the mechanics here. I enjoy dockyards and treat them like an alternative to buying a high quality ship at a lower price.
But I think it is important to note that it’s impossible to finish the event at once. In each case two or three phases are impossible to execute, and can be purchased if the game is complete. Wargaming lets you complete various tasks, but besides watching the construction of a special ship happen via snazzy drydock animations. I can tell you that if a player who has already decided not to spend money on that event, it’s tempting to abandon these intentions when a man stars at a ship that’s almost finished. If you complete the ship, the fee will vary depending on the price of the boat, however the rate of completion does normally not vary between $20 and $35.
World of Warships boardwalk meeting.
The Christmas sale is a huge revenue generator for World of Warships, too. As previously said, some ships have been removed from their sale over the years, so only a means to earn these ships is to keep them in a random container. As far as the Santa containers have the highest chance of bringing down a ship, players are known to spend hundreds and possibly thousands of dollars on container bundles to either accumulate premium ships or round out their port collection, or to try for that special ship that they’ve never been able to obtain.
Nevertheless, the best container still have a 13 percentage chance of getting a ship, and that only one 1% chance of getting a special or tier 10 ship like Missouri. The containers do also have a pity function: if players allow for too many opening the next container, they can get a free one. if the value of the transfer isn’t even too much, it could well cost me the value of a premium ship directly from the store.
Orca camo for the Huron.
Strangely, cosmetics are one of the most widely used ways to monetize Warships. Due to the recent economic rework, ship camouflages are no longer limited to bonuses that interfere with ship performance. They’re full of cosmetic appeal. This would be a great way to monetize the game and avoid criticism over gambling or a pay-to-win scheme, as many other games have done.
But, it seems that Wargaming had decided instead to capitalize on the previously mentioned cash-generating tactics. For a ship, a permanent camouflage can be purchased for over $1,50 US for the first camo, and $12 US for the same ship, but that’s just the same. These pixelated paint jobs aren’t really competitive in the game, but they have the best value. I wondered what a good way to monetize Wargaming is without a doubt dwindling on some of the scarcity tactics, currency conversion games, FOMO and random mechanics. There’s a lot of art in the department.
While that game seems free to play, World of Warships has a diverse array of ways to give the players money and a considerable amount of money. As far as the era of subscriptions may have been dead, studios have invented a number of mechanics, to make it incredibly profitable.
A great deal of small-scales are available on demand – either the captain of a historical battleship or the feisty pirate queen on the deck of a smuggling vessel! Join the MOP team here from the Depths to take a momentous trip to all the ocean-going MMOs of the moment. Just don’t sink the boat!