I would like to point out I’m cynical the spirit of this thread will be respected because this is the nature of F2P.
(Disclaimer: I don’t have GoW numbers, maybe they’re different, this is just the industry average.)
Newbies are hard to get! The store is full of options, and getting them to click on your game in particular costs a lot of effort, which usually means ad money. Other excited players are a factor in influencing them too. Newbies are very likely to spend money, both because they want to catch up to other people and they have no clue what the wisest purchases will be. So every game wants a constant influx of newbies.
Mid-game players are still valuable. They’re making progress, and feeling good about it, so even though they know what impulse buys to ignore, they’re very likely to bite on good deals. Since mid-game players are easy to keep happy, they tend to help a lot in terms of attracting newbies.
Endgamers are problematic. They’ve seen all of your content, so it takes something very big and very new to keep them from burning out. The game has probably changed dramatically since they started, and each change is more likely than the last to be something they didn’t like. Since they’ve seen and experienced everything, they are least likely to spend more money. Since they’re disgruntled, they’re more likely to talk people out of joining.
When your revenue is monthly, you don’t care how much someone spent last month. You care how likely they’ll spend that or more this month. Endgamers are the people least likely to spend. They’re also the people most likely to sour the community and prevent new signups. So most games are optimized to send smiling people to take endgamers by the hand and lead them to a Pain Room until they decide they don’t like the game anymore. Preferably quickly.
So is it any wonder that the PvP reward system, the game’s most important grind, is designed to:
- Present high rewards to newbies but create a sense of frustration because the most rewarding teams aren’t teams they can beat.
- Give mid-game players the highest average rewards just as they’re able to maintain high win rates.
- Progressively lower the rewards for endgamers such that they have to win multiples of matches or ask their guild to abstain from rewards just to feel like they break even.
GoW wants endgamers to leave. Not stay. Unless you’re going to spend a lot of money and recruit a lot of newbies, then you can stay. (But the game won’t be any more fun.)
The devs will deny it, and deep in their hearts they probably care about endgamers and want a game that keeps them. But actions speak louder than words. I first saw someone point out the PvP disparity more than a year ago. The only adjustment that’s been made is to make it worse for endgamers. It’s hard to ignore the writing when it’s in flaming letters.
(That has the cynical bit built right in, too. The reason PvP revamp isn’t and hasn’t been a major focus is it affects every group of players. If it’s unsatisfactory for newbies it’s probably also bad for mid-gamers. It’s hard to prioritize something that will give you three groups of unhappy players instead of two.
I really hope the next update fixes one of the major endgamer gripes. It is very true that sometimes they do that. 4.2 was the “make classes interesting” update by removing the class change fee. But we had to whine for years to get it. Nobody was asking for emoji with such vigor; they just wanted functional chat. We’ve had quite a few “for the newbies/midgamers” updates. It’d be nice to have one for the endgamers.
Because in my eyes, everyone eventually becomes an endgamer. So even newbies should care how they’re treated. Why would you invest a year into a game that will show you the door when you get there? What’s the point?)