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 Post subject: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: June 20th, 2012, 4:36 pm 
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OK, I'm going to confess something. Once the diamond jubilee thing came out and they announced the Squeal of Fortune now offered rare rewards at 10 times their current appearance rate, I decided that now was the time I give it a try. So I spent $100 buying 200 spins each for me and my brother ($100 = 400 spins; spin for a quarter). Used them to get a load of experience, some good spending money, and the full dragon ceremonial (completed with 17 spins left) and Queens Guard garb (completed with 3 spins left - much harder to get, strangely enough).

Not the first time I'm guilty of that. I've spent over a hundred buying keys for Team Fortress 2. Most of them bore shoddy results (but thank goodness for strange items now; mostly anything you get is good).

Why would I do that? Why would I blow good money on something I can't even hold in my hand, or in some cases, not even brag about to friends? The majority of them don't even play these games. My boss at work wouldn't at all be impressed (don't even know how much of a gamer he is).

There are multiple reasons why I did it, and perhaps a few for why you should give it a try as well. Read at your own discretion.

1: I simply wanted the dragon ceremonial. Because they messed with my favourite black wizards hat (see my Runescape avatar for a preview), I had to seek out a new attire, and I liked how the dragon ceremonial looked and worked. I could change the color to something considerably close to my favourite shade of blue, and it went very well with the Serene Gaze aura. Not to mention it's an uncommon garb and it makes me look somewhat unique. I like being unique. Everybody does.

2: I wanted to take advantage of the new increased chances of a rare item. Never gotten one before, after all. Like many humans, I was very curious to see for myself what kind of experience the huge lamp gave me, or if I could get one of those super-rare cosmetic items like the katana or a tattoo. It was the best time out of many; chances were high that they might've realized that it was getting "too" easy to get rares, and they might've lowered it slightly again (based off past events).

3: I support Jagex (and Valve, for that matter). They are a gaming company, and they've kept me entertained for 11 years, so I wanted to consider it 11 years worth of tips. They've kept me entertained for 11 years; half of which I wasn't even a member. Didn't cost anything; it was just a game I could play for the fun of it. But, the economy has been hard, and they've had to make some difficult decisions. But I respect them as an ambitious company striving to create an incredible experience for their players.

It's not always about the money, I find. Yes, it's business; yes, it can be frustrating, soul-depriving work sometimes; and yes, Jagex is a large company with many, MANY mouths to feed. If it was more about making money, I could think of dozens of ways they could make twice what they're making on the game right now. They nuked the bots, taking out perhaps 60% of the player base; many of them members. And they didn't raise the price of admission as a result. Lately they've been more about the community, anyways.

And getting something good back for it is always nice.

4: Surprisingly enough, it is wicked good experience. I got about 2 full inventories worth of free-skill small and medium lamps (with 5 times the experience I'd get from a 50-penguin-point turnover), and several directed ones to provide me with some nice all-around experience. I used the lamps I got (including a huge 52000 exp prayer lamp!) to achieve my smithing goal, my cooking goal, my herblore goal, my summoning goal, and my slayer goal; all of which might have taken me a long time of playing to achieve otherwise.

And here, you're wondering about whatever happened to the crazy guy who loves setting goals and taking his time with everything. Fact of the matter is, I've had those goals for an awful long time, and they were getting rather stale. Thing about goals is that you set them to be completed, and if they're never completed, they become morally depriving. So I completed them so that I could set some new goals and keep things exciting for myself. You're supposed to strive towards and complete goals, not simply have them for the point of having them.

5: I didn't actually buy virtual items. I bought time. I could've gotten all that experience on my own, yes, but it would've taken me days. Maybe months.

Runescape will last long for me, but it won't last forever. I do plan (... well, "hope") on getting level 99 everything one day. Taking down the Fight Kiln, soloing Kree'Arra, completing the Dominion Tower... still a long ways to go before I have the skill, practice, and confidence to do all these things.

I spent $100. I make that in 1 day at my full-time job, doing something I enjoy doing. If I spent the day playing Runescape, I would've probably only achieved one of those goals (I'm a very random player who cannot stick with one task before wanting to do something else). Works out in the end if you think about it.

6: Simply to see what it was like. You only live once. Try everything.

It's like going to an incredibly fancy restaurant. The atmosphere is incredibly nice despite you only being there for an hour or so, and the food, although professionally done, is incredibly expensive. You don't actually pay for the food; you pay for the memorable experience. You don't go there every day by yourself just for lunch, you go there once in a blue moon with friends and family, sit around, and just chat. Hang out, talk about stuff, maybe play the occasional dinner game. Could easily do it at home as well, but the atmosphere provided is usually nicer, and nobody is left out having to set the table or cook; it's all done for you.

That being said, unless they come out with this other wicked awesome item on the squeal, that's going to be the one and only time I ever do something like that.

7: Practice. No, really. After spinning 200 times, I sort of learned how to "aim". It's possible, you know. Not perfectly accurate, but if you can narrow the chance of getting your target item down to a quarter of the available items, it really helps. Bulls-eyed a fish mask after the second try (first try, I missed and hit a 200 000 red space - no joke!).

So there. You're free to your opinion, but those are my reasons, and I'm sticking with them. What's done is done, and I benefited in more ways than you think.

And no, I'm not buying anybody else any spin tickets.

Cheers, cannoneers!

This was originally posted as an Informer Economy article.

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 Post subject: Register and login to get these in-post ads to disappear
PostPosted: June 20th, 2012, 4:36 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: June 20th, 2012, 6:39 pm 
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Really nice article. I can understand and relate to the stances you take. Although I pay for membership, I wouldn't purchase anything additional. I especially like number five; you bought time, not virtual items.


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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: June 20th, 2012, 9:47 pm 
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Still not convinced. I mean, I can imagine membership as a micro transaction that greatly reduces time and effort spent playing the game. But SoF is not playing the game. It's still just spinning a wheel...gambling.

1. I can understand wanting items only on the wheel, but are they really worth the money put towards spins? Probably not. But hey, people put high value in cosmetic items and that's a personal preference.

2. True, it's better to get and use spins when odds and rewards are better...but that's what Jagex is aiming for. They want to entice you into buying spins.

3. Some companies are really good and it makes sense to support them through giving them money. Again, I personally wouldn't because I don't think any company needs any more money from me than they get from me purchasing a game...but hey, that's just me.

As to the bot removal, yes, it hurt temporarily, but they've recovered since then. They aren't a massive company either, so even if they lose some revenue, its not like they have to lay people off or anything like that. On the flip side, having more money is always better. SoF partially balances that revenue lost (though I would say bots have recovered and Jagex is still receiving a good portion of revenue from them once again). Ya, there probably are better ways, but they might have thought this was the best way overall. But, who knows.

4. The lamps are indeed nice, but they do take time and effort out of the game which to me ruins the experience. Next time, don't set hard goals. ;)

5. You are buying virtual items. The lamps can be considered time, but things that are unobtainable otherwise (like the dragon ceremonial, queen's guard outfit, and fish mask) are virtual items. So you are buying both.

I agree that if you want to spend the money, that's up to you and it's your decision. However, it going to take away part of the experience of playing the game as mentioned before.

6. Ah, the hedonist mindset. Trying it one time only is better than doing it over and over...but not doing it at all is better than doing it once. SoF is one of those things that I would think you don't have to ever "try" (aka buy spins).

7. I agree you can probably get better at spinning with more practice. Worth it for the few future spins you get? Debatable.


I suppose it comes down to personal opinion and preference. Not convinced at the end, but I understand the arguments and it's still your choice. As for me, I think I'll pass.

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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: June 27th, 2012, 8:54 am 
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Correct me if I'm wrong but I thought that Jagex said that it didnt matter when you clicked and that you had no control over what you got.

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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: July 9th, 2012, 12:36 pm 
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Well, I'm going to pipe in and give my opinion. I don't necessarily disagree with the whole concept of SOF. The entire game of RuneScape is kind of like a crap shoot. Even what you get from the drop table is a gamble when you kill an NPC. So, the concept of doing something to get something in return, is not foreign to this game. To me, it's just another minigame from that aspect.

What I do have a really big problem with is the fact that you can buy spins with real money. Not from the aspect of underage kids gambling with real money to get a prize in the game (and yes, that is what it amounts to), but rather buying XP and rare items which give you an advantage in-game with real cash. To me that is not kosher at all.

As you have explained, what you have saved by essentially buying those XP lamps is time; time you otherwise would have spent in-game working at getting that XP or that rare item. Well, if you think of what is actually the real currency in RS it IS time, not GP. The more time you have to spend, the more XP you can gain and the more GP you can make. Some people do not really have a huge amount of time to spend playing RS everyday, all day (i.e. no-lifeing it). That's O.K. though. Everyone has to come to the realization that what levels you are able to achieve is based on how much time you can spend playing the game. You place yourself in the overall ranking system (competing amongst other players) with the realization that where you end up is in fact based upon what time and effort you were able to put into the game. The playing field seems fair in that respect, succumbing to the realization that you could never complete with someone who has no life and plays all the time. No problem there.

Here's the problem. You now take that playing field and severely skew it towards someone who has more real life money to spend. It favours those who are rich (relatively speaking) and puts at a disadvantage anyone who cannot afford to spend extra money on spins. The XP competition is no longer based solely on time spent playing, but also by how much money you spend on the game. Guys!! Do you not see what is intrinsically WRONG with that?!? The whole notion of ranks, and hiscores and relative player proficiency is no longer just based on actually playing the game. Your XP and levels that you achieve are now reflective of how much real life money you throw into the game. Does anyone but me not see this as an entire devaluation of the whole inherent system of level achievement?

Now, don't get me wrong. I have spun the SOF and have received many XP lamps. I take these free spins as just another minigame whereby I have received a reward for playing. That's totally fine. BUT, I will never, ever buy SOF spins with real money. I would rather have Jagex remove the purchase of spins for real money and replace it with in-game GP transactions instead. That way, if someone really wants to gamble to see if they get an XP lamp, and they need some more GP to buy some spins, they work in-game to get that GP (i.e., spend time playing the game). Do you see where I'm coming from here? All XP achieved whether it be from actually training a skill, or playing a minigame to get an XP prize is entirely achieved by actually PLAYING THE GAME. Then there is no problem. Using GP instead of real money would also make SOF become a money sink, removing GP from the game. That actually is a good thing for the RS economy.

In summary, although I do not have any problem with the concept of SOF as an addition to the game, I completely disagree with the implementation of buyable spins with real life money.

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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: July 10th, 2012, 6:55 am 
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ya Dano I agree with you.

A few years ago I remember reading a quote by Andrew or Paul Gower (can't remember which) where they stated that they don't believe that people should be able to buy their way through the game (basically buying anything in-game with real money). Now this is possible, It's called buying spins in SOF.

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PostPosted: July 10th, 2012, 6:55 am 
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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: July 10th, 2012, 7:54 am 
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Have to agree with Dano there too. I enjoy my 2 free spins a day and whatever extras I earn during play. I will never buy spins myself, but I don't really have an issue for extra spins being bought in small amounts. $100 for 400 spins seems to be more than a little fun though. I had no problem with the $5 and $20 packs they first offered and they did set a limit on the amount you could purchase, I believe, but this new pack does reek of buying XP. Using just my free spins, I too have the Dragon ceremonial outfit and I like to wear it. Just need the hat to complete it, howver since I am not really a hat-wearing person, it doesn't bother me if I get it or not. I am not a leaderboard chaser, so someone "buying" their way up doesn't bother me personally, but I can see where others feel its unfair.
I, too, would much rather see Jagex use the SoF as a money-sink in game. Let players earn GP, then buy extra spins that way. The only problem with that, would be the gold sellers would have a field day. If the people who want to purchase extra spins could only do it with in game GP, then they would head off to one of the gold selling sites that I keep getting spammed with every time I enter the GE. So, we have a choice: let Jagex sell the spins and make the profit themselves, or let these illegal sites reap even MORE benefit from players willing to cheat the system. It really is a catch-22 situation.
In the end, it is Alex's money to spend as he wishes and if he enjoys spinning the wheel, good luck to him. I would love to know just how much XP he gained with the lamps. I really can't believe it would be game-changing. So he saves a day or two of grinding.. can't REALLY see anyone hitting the 200 million XP buying lamps, can you?

Happy Runescaping to all
Pyrn

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Last edited by Pyrnassius on July 11th, 2012, 6:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: [Informer Article] Alex's Analysis – Shut up and take...
PostPosted: July 10th, 2012, 8:39 am 
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80% of the xp I needed to get to 40 dungeoneering was from xp lamps :)

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