I don’t want to come across ranty, but I have to speak my mind about the latest Tribes Ascend news.Â Hi-Rez Studios announced today that pre-orders are available for Tribes Ascend and those customers who pre-order will get:
* VIP Status (Value: $20 USD)
* 800 Tribes Gold (Value: $10 USD)
* 30-Day Booster (Value: $15 USD)
* Admission to Beta (Value: Priceless!)
My immediate reaction was to ask the following three questions: (1) What is VIP status?, (2) How much does 800 Tribes Gold buy me, and (3) What is a booster?Â My first question is answered by Hi-Rez’s closed beta FAQ:
â€œVIPâ€ is a special account status that will be available to those that purchase it in Tribes: Ascend. Those with VIP status will have priority login, access to exclusive servers, and will earn Tokens and Experience faster inside the game, allowing them to unlock items faster.
Essentially, if my understanding is correct, it’s like saying you earn more silver coins in HoN or more in-game LoL points than a normal user.Â If I don’t become a VIP, what will my user experience be like?Â Lousy log-in and game servers?Â Why is this valuated at $20?Â In fact, why would I really want any of this up front?
I feel like I’m being asked to buy microtransactions in a box similar to how League of Legends offers the 20 hero box deals in-stores.Â In a sense, we’re being asked to pre-order our microtransactions!
There are still unknowns.Â What can be purchased/unlocked with these “tokens” — everything?Â Just how much faster can they be obtained?Â How much of the game is or will ever be gated to just VIP’s?
What Hi-Rez should do is offer a full-price version that comes with all weapons/armor/classes/etc. unlocked.Â Let me pay $49.99, get all the unlocks like a normal game, get priority access, and then charge me for cosmetic goodies like skins.Â That would be true VIP status. Â Let it be similar to how TF2 handles their business model.
I don’t feel like a VIP when all I really get is the opportunity to be first in line to spend money in their cash shop.
Subtract all the microtransactions they’re selling you ahead of time and this is just a $30 way to buy into a beta test.Â I’m not impressed at all.