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Paying for a Beta, does that still make it a Beta??

Discussion in 'WildStar General' started by SumNoob, Mar 27, 2014.

  1. SumNoob

    SumNoob New Cupcake

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    So as a early contributor to the game. I mean that I was in the beta early on and really wanted to look for bugs and help make a solid game. So I was, well Beta testing since the more games use Beta as a gimmick the less they seem to be for testing.

    Beta Testing is defined as-A test for a computer product prior to commercial release. Beta testing is the last stage of testing, and normally can involve sending the product to beta test sites outside the company for real-world exposure or offering the product for a free trial download over the Internet. Beta testing is often preceded by a round of testing called alpha testing.

    I post this because the more I see in Wildstar the more I question that anyone knows what "beta testing" means. I have seen many gimmicks done with it from other titles or games. The classic special outfit/pets/mounts that only those elite that were in the beta could show off. It gives that elites jerk status of you only think you know this game! But rightfully so as those who where in beta theatrically contributed to fixing issues and helped to provide a solid game experience for the rest of us! There dedication and patience was what our bug free game play was built on! There was a time when games that were release I dear say didn't have patches or updates and a large part of this was due to a group of people that took there own time to find those issues and resolve them for you and me.

    Well now I am supposed to pay for the right to not play but test for a company like Carbine? So now I am like an employee that pays for the right to work? I know that I have friends still in the beta and handed over the pre-order money will little hesitation. There argument was for the bonuses and what else is there to play? Even though they did this when I ask are all the bugs fixed I get an onslaught of feedback about what this game (WildStar) is still lacking. I know almost no-one that plans on Raiding with this system, and they all support the great work put forward by the developers. But this is the MMO market where it is the slow and steady that winds the race.

    But now I feel the weight of the companies using the "Beta" as a means to get early sales and they push off release and let those who buy in to there game before it is even finished some extra benefits. So if you want to look like someone who has supported this game early on or you get to sound like a senior to your generation with comments like "I was playing this game when you still had a gamecube!". And I find more and more games are released by publishers with no worries those will be fixed in the patch. And there will be an update shortly to fix issue is showing up on every weeks bug report for games that have been out for years.

    I think it is us! The gamers, that have created the issue. We forget it is our responsibility to not just throw money at the next game title like addicts looking for a fix! It is our game after all, we are the customers who are paying for them. We are the reason all those Dev's were payed to make the game. And it is our job as a community working together that should have dicussed what is happening here and why we should be voicing our concerns. But it seems that as long as we blindly hand over our cash we only feed the problem. I mean why would anyone care what we say if we are willing to buy a broken game? I think it is up to us after all, it is our time and money that will make or break any game. -just the option of some Noob :\
     
  2. RavenWind

    RavenWind Well-Known Cupcake

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    WildStar Beta testing has been going on for over 18-24 months and nobody had to pay a single cent to be a part of it. I'm beta testing in the upcoming Weekend Beta and I have not paid a single cent to participate. You seem to be confusing pre-ordering the game with the added bonus of participating in the last phase of beta testing with paying to be in the beta. Your employing the Logical Fallacy of "Begging the Question" by providing a narrow and opinionated definition of Beta Testing. The only part of your definition that is accurate in this context is the first sentence. "A test for a computer product prior to commercial release". Your own definition uses the term normally to indicate there is no hard definition.

    You might site EverQuestNext: Landmark as an example for your argument. Before EQNL even started Alpha testing you could purchase Founder Packs ($25, $50, $100) to guarantee access to the Alpha and the Beta test. WildStar, however, really does not fit the point you are trying to make as you cannot purchase ONLY access to the beta. Oh yeah and its been free for nearly 2 years now.

    Now, pre-purchase Alpha and Beta (and re-iterative Beta, and Omega) access may not sit well for some folks (I'm one of them.Damn money Grubbers!), but the reality is that its a perfectly viable way to raise and/or increase your development capital. Clearly, we are in the minority on this point as plenty of folks have thrown money at EQNL. Its simply a different business model (EQNL will be F2P at launch) and we don't like it for emotional reasons. So the answer is to NOT participate in it for us. However, we shouldn't presume to tell other folks how to spend their money or whether they should throw at the company before or after release.
     
  3. Benevon

    Benevon Cupcake-About-Town

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    I can't say that I feel like I paid to beta test. I paid for the game (and extra swag) with the free added bonus of being able to test since I hadn't received a key. Most people probably would have pre ordered the game whether there was beta weekend access or not. And this close to launch, the more testing, the better. Sure, a lot of those people arent reporting bugs or giving feedback which is a shame. But I'm sure there is a lot things the devs are able to log from having a larger number of people on their servers (stability, different behaviorial trends, class populations etc).

    You talk about paying for a broken game, yet the game isn't even out yet. There HAVE been games that pushed release too soon, was loaded with bugs, lacked content etc, so I can understand your concerns. So far though, it seems Carbine is just about ready to go. There will be bugs at launch, there will be bugs after major patches. That's just the nature of the beast. One thing that I think defines a good game is how well and quickly they deal with those issues.

    You have valid points, but I think this close to launch, the pre order beta access is to draw some more players in while logging some behind the scenes stuff on a larger scale. It's basically an open beta without being an actual beta (which is opening up soon). Most of the more serious closed beta testing has already been done and hopefully we are just at the tweaks and optimization phase to get it running as smooth as possible for launch.
     
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  4. Kataryna

    Kataryna Super Cupcake

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    I've been in beta since April of Last Year. I've not pre-ordered yet as I don't NEED to pre-order until closer to Launch since I've got my character above 32, and I kinda need to save a bit of money before I can buy the game for both me and hubby. The Pre-order is NOT "paying for beta" like you are trying to think. You're buying the game plus some perks for having purchased the game earlier than launch, one of the perks just happens to be beta access - but wouldn't you rather have hundreds of thousands of people hammering on their servers when they can FIX things instead of suddenly at launch when they CAN'T fix things easily without people getting really really pissed off?? You can even STILL get free weekend keys from Alienware and MMORPG and many other sites that Carbine has chosen to have pass out keys!

    In addition - having been in beta for nearly a YEAR (and there were others that were in well before me, plus Friends and Family Beta before that and Alpha before that) I can say without a doubt that this beta has truly been a BETA where they're testing and changing things constantly and are now finally getting it ready to be in a launch state.
     
  5. MadBlue

    MadBlue Cupcake-About-Town

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    The way I see it is that levels 1-17 are well-tested and have been available to the media for a while now, so the Pre-Order Beta is really just a chance for Pre-Order players to get familiar with the game, try out the different classes, decide on a server to play on and reserve names on those servers.

    In any case, unless you buy the Digital Deluxe version, you're not paying any more than anyone paying after launch would pay - and Digital Deluxe doesn't add anything but in-game items and a title, so you're not paying for beta at all, you're just getting beta access as a benefit from paying before the game is released instead of after.
     
  6. Livnthedream

    Livnthedream Super Cupcake

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    Not to mention, "paying for beta" was part of this genre going back to UO.
     
  7. Fishsticks

    Fishsticks Cupcake-About-Town

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    argumentum ad antiquitatem.
     
  8. Livnthedream

    Livnthedream Super Cupcake

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    Right, as though any "early adopter" isn't effectively paying to beta that product, especially in a service based environment.
     
  9. Fishsticks

    Fishsticks Cupcake-About-Town

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    I'm not sure how that addresses my statement. :confused:

    I don't consider Wildstar to be paying for beta, and I don't agree with the OP. That doesn't make argument from tradition a valid argument though.
     
  10. RavenWind

    RavenWind Well-Known Cupcake

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    Well, to Livin's point, this practice is nothing new, in fact If UO made you pay to be in the beta than that would make it the original business model for MMOs, weal or woe.
     
  11. SumNoob

    SumNoob New Cupcake

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    Yes I could be more clear that it is not just wildstar I speak of, but I have been Beta testing it for several months. And I was informed that if I wish to continue to "beta" I would have to pre-order the game! So I have to pay $$ to continue to test the game. So I not sure why you would think I was confused by that?
    I may have soapboxed a little about my frustration of many games use of the term and idea behind "beta testing". If I tracked off I apologise to you and the issue at hand. I have to greatest hope for WildStar, which why I feel I have to be open and talk about issues that don't support my fellow gamers. Wishing will not make this title a great MMO, and I feel that any game company (NCSoft & Carbine) that tries to make back there money on release can only hurt the overall potential of a MMO.
     
  12. Convicted

    Convicted Super Cupcake

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    Your overall message is fine ( not giving companies money to be a beta tester ), in fact Totalbiscuit has been talking about this for the last year in his videos, but this particular games situation is different and I think including it is misplaced.
    Many of us are in fact still in beta without pre-ordering or giving any money at all, if you did elect to pre-order that is completely your choice and the beta is only an additional perk.
     
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  13. RavenWind

    RavenWind Well-Known Cupcake

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    Sadly you were misinformed then. If you were in the Full Winter Beta, meaning you had access 6 days a week for the duration of Winter Beta, NOT just Stress Test Weekends or Weekend Beta Events, then all you needed to continue to have Spring Beta Access (limited to weekends though it is) without paying a cent was to have one char of at least level 32. That is how I have access now without paying for anything.
    This chart should help to clarify. Note, the Left side of the cart by-passes the Pre-order part.

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Bnol

    Bnol Cupcake-About-Town

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    Except that the OPs argument was that we have, over time, allowed the developers to charge us for beta access. That this was an evolution of recent game development, and we have a duty as gamers to fight it. In reality, it has happened in the past and it is not much different than any early adopter paying more for the same or lesser new product/service.
     
  15. Livnthedream

    Livnthedream Super Cupcake

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    As for the new title, semantics. Most services will continue to change over time, its a large part of why they are services and not boxed products. Under that, its pretty effectively "beta" as issues will come up regardless. Should more services advertise as "beta"? Perhaps, though that would adversely effect sales as many people refuse to touch beta's entirely.
     
  16. CriSPeH

    CriSPeH Cupcake-About-Town

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    Just look at DICE, BF4 is still in beta yet they continue to charge ppl for the game as well as each alpha phase expansion they release.:rolleyes:
     
  17. azmundai

    azmundai Well-Known Cupcake

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    yes. you signed an eula that probably states as much.

    you also didnt buy beta, you pre-ordered a game that will release july 3rd.
     
  18. Drokk

    Drokk Cupcake-About-Town

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    You pre-purchased a game. The weekend betas are a bonus. Don't like it? Wait until the open beta and try it out then before you pay for it.
     
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  19. Gardavil

    Gardavil Cupcake

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    I agree that access to being a Beta Tester should not be bought and sold, not even as a pre-order perk... I agree it should be about attitude, commitment, quality, not just profit and marketing...

    But what can we do? Turn the clock back? I wish I could, as terrible for young people as that sounds, I wish I could. The past is what I know and am comfortable with. Not now.

    But we can't alter Time. The MMO genre and the Industry is changing, just like which people are attracted to play MMOs is changing. More and more we see beta access up for sale or gated through pre-order. I'm not comfortable with the changes and I did in fact walk away from WildStar with every intention to make a statement about how I disagreed with Carbine including Beta as a pre-order perk.

    Then after talking with some friends I realized the only person "paying" was me. Carbine is doing things differently now than MMO companies did in the past because the marketplace has changed ....whether I like it or agree with it or not. There is much I have chosen not to purchase or participate in over the last few years because I didn't agree with it but I wasn't going to miss out on WildStar. I waited too many years for a MMO like this to come along.

    So I am treating my own Beta weekend invite as I believe a Player should treat a Beta invite. I play, I test, I look for problems, bugs, issues, I report. Just like I would have if I had been invited to Beta months ago. If Carbine sends me a tell and tells me to delete my character and make another one of another class I'll do it gladly, what ever it takes to help make WildStar better. To me it's still closed Beta and I can have fun yes, but I still have a responsibility to fulfill so WildStar release as a better MMO than it is now. For all of us.

    That's how I finally chose to deal with the question about whether or not this is a real Beta... to me IT IS a real Beta.
     
  20. Livnthedream

    Livnthedream Super Cupcake

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    The problem with the "old" and how things have changed and why "dedicated testers" are not really as important anymore is how things have switched on the back end in terms of analytics. In many ways getting pure throughput of players is more important than that "good" bug reporter.
     

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