A discussion on p2w, is it worthy of criticism?

To pay, or not 2 pay


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skrts

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#1
Now the topic of p2w has been relevant more recently than before, due to the influx of new players and new patrons spending more and more on keys every release of a crate. The prominent debate amongst f2p and p2w players is, does the p2winners make the playing experience objectively worse for f2p and lower spending players, particularly old players?

I can personally see both sides of the spectrum, having played mostly f2p and mostly p2w on seasons 3 and 6 of manacube survival, with 3 being my biggest p2w ever. I ended up placing second place on p top even with the surplus of p2w. While in season 6, spending most of my time not putting a dime in, I have managed to do so far, very well.

The argument for f2p is, the p2winners, or rather the enabling of such p2w, makes being f2p objectively less fun, prices get inflated, the market is servicing only the mega rich who have strong standings already due to p2w.

Now the flipside to this argument is, the p2w players DON'T get a free ticket to win, or control the economy, and that the f2p players need to learn to grind and get better in order to fend for themselves, this season for me was strategized due to prior cubit grinding in order to keep up with p2w

This brings up the final crux of the debate, the existence of a cubit market, and a cubit flipping arena. The market for cubits presents the ability for theoretically any f2p/low spender have just as much power as the p2w, the existence of the cubit flipping arena also allows for theoretically any player with the right luck and prediction of the flipping system, get to p2w levels of greatness.

The flipside to this again is, the f2p do not have a good enough starting ground to learn the selling and buying and flipping of cubits, as they do not have the base funds. But to that argument exists voting and daily rewards, but of that most f2p do not pay enough attention to to win the 20 cubits every month.

Now the end of the debate draws a concluding argument for both sides, git gud, versus, stop p2winning u no skills, which I find very interesting, now what are your thoughts on this topic, is the enabling of p2winning harmful to the f2p, or do the f2p need to simply, git gud, at the game?
 

awesomeboy__

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#2
As a survival player here are my thoughts on this (I don't know how the other servers goes):

General P2W players

As a F2P player I personally am in the middle for the P2W feature in every single server but I can't complain because that's how servers run. I think that spending your money however you like is perfectly fine. But I HATE it when people start bragging about being able to get keys and stuff like that. Obviously the P2W players are way better off than F2P players, personally I had to work my butt off to get every single one of the inf chests that I own, while others could easily buy it from the store in the matter of seconds. The P2W feature actually makes my experience on manacube more fun. This is because I see people opening 100 ancient keys every week and yet I am still doing better than them. But then again this is probably not the same for other people who are F2P. Inflation sucks and I actually made my own post about cubit inflation on survival. But its never fun to see a price go up for no reason at all, and people paying more just because they can.

Flipside

"The f2p players need to learn to grind and get better in order to fend for themselves "

This statement in itself already makes no sense because spending 100 dollars on the server could get you to 100m with 1 hour of grinding whilst someone spending nothing could take a whole day of playtime (just an example, not realistic).

Cubits

Almost every active person who plays survival knows that the player recknate has been selling cubits to gain money, and that's the only way hes been doing this. That's personally fine by me, but what annoys me is the inflation. Cubit prices have been riding at 50m per 1 cubit for around a week. It hasn't been going up because people are starting to reach the spawner cap and realize that theres only so much money that they can make in a day. But a P2W player can buy a bunch of ancient keys and inflate cubit prices however much they want. Or the seller is able to raise the price they are selling at and people will be forced to buy/sell at that price because the demand is so high and the supply is so low.

Flipside

Like I said before, the inflation that a P2W player can cause from buying/selling cubits by themselves makes it almost impossible for F2P players to catch up with. Cubit flipping requires you to be on a lot and for you to know how to negotiate prices. For daily rewards and voting, on a regular week (0.05 from voting per day), you get 0.6 cubits in one week. On a double rewards week (0.1 from voting per day), you get 0.95 cubits in one week. In a month there's usually one rewards week and three regular weeks totaling at 3.35 cubits. And with one month of constant voting and claiming gary rewards everyday you can get......

ONE LEG KEY !!!

Obviously that's exaggerated but I hope you get my point. Its way harder for a F2P player who doesn't know how to buy cubits to even get a rank than for a P2W player. I've seen countless Members who told me that they were going to save cubits to try to get VIP and I see them giving up and selling the cubits within a few days. This disappoints me because I can't help them even though I want to. It took me a year to learning how to buy cubits/flip cubits to be able to get MVP+

Conclusion/Final thoughts

I see where the P2W players are coming from and their thoughts on this topic. But I personally think that P2W can be both harmful and hurtful for F2P players. If you're a F2P player you just need to dedicate some time into the server and learn how it works. Let me know what you think about my thoughts and tell me if I'm wrong about some of the things I said
 
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skrts

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#3
A case study on f2p:

there once was a player called schoey, he took over number 1 from the p2w party legends back in season 3, this feat was done completely free 2 play and through /ad grinding, his ability to grind and knowledge of the game allowed him to beat a former number 1 party solo.

A case study on p2w:

sonicbliss, was a player in season 2 who majorly p2wd to number 1, but alas in the end lost number 1 due to boredom, and was taken over by United, a mega staff party at the time. United was also then after taken over by another party called Legends, which was beaten by schoey later down the line

This creates a duality, the best of the best of the f2p can easily take out the average p2w, no matter how much they pay. The argument for p2w is that, the usds spent trails off massively in value after about the first 2 weeks, just like in survival, I was able to for the first few days outpace everyones money earnings by grinding carrots, surpassing the p2w players.
 
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#4
inhales

P2W is a concept that is encouraged in many, many servers. It's the only way to support financially such a large server, as well as to hire developers. If the recknate boi went and bought 200 cubits and sold them in-game for 50m each he would have 10 billion. cough

Thing is 200 bucks to a server as large as Manacube doesn't actually go that far. For instance, Survival has 300 player limit. It's hit the limit before. Many times. A server powerful enough to run that costs a ton of money, there is no way Dacon owns the server. This means he probably pays an absolute ton of money to host this monster of a server. We may say it runs on a Wii, but realize that most Survival 1.15.2 servers would have a stroke if so many as 200 people joined.

Now add all the other active servers on. We have Aztec SB, Oasis SB... another 300 players to support, admittedly on 1.13 but still, much server resources required... Parkour with who-knows-how-many hundreds of players online, although at 1.8... Factions with so many players loading and exploding chunks with TNT cannons... Islands with their...ten people...never mind.

Point is, combine all these servers together and I'd say on average, people buy a few dollars worth of stuff an hour. Someone buys Elite every week or so, or a rank up... few more tens of dollars. The U.S. min wage is 7.25 USD per hour. Try funding a server on minimum wage, and the entire network probably makes a little more than that on good days and a lot less than that on bad days. A key is $4 usually, so to just surpass min wage people would have to buy 2 keys an hour or rank up every few hours.

Nobody wants P2W because they don't want to pay to play on a server. Someone's gotta pay for that server though, and there's not many other ways to get people to pay for it than to donate. On top of server costs, every Factions reset they pay out a ton of money in PayPal. Factions isn't pay-to-win anymore so now they have to pay out and maintain the server.

At some point we have to realize that although p2w isn't really what we want, it's not really a choice. The only way to fix this would be to require a fee to play on the server which would hurt numbers dramatically but would make the playing experience miles better.

Alright, here comes my opinion. Raise shields and prepare to be shocked. I recommend not touching metal.

My personal choice on this would be to have two separate servers, one requiring at least VIP or VIP+ rank, and one being completely free. The completely free option would let you play on ManaCube, but it would be more vanilla gameply. Less fancy features, less plugins, low player cap. I know, this would turn Mana into P2P partially and it would never happen but ManaCube is like it's own game within Minecraft, and every game has to be supported somehow. You can either end up with a large, but unhappy playerbase or a small, more content playerbase. Minecraft doesn't earn money by charging you every time you change your name or skin, or charging you every time you start a single-player world. Hell, they could lock biomes if they wanted to by charging you a minifee every time to unlock a new biome ekhm EA ekhm. But no. They charge $26 to open your account and play forever. And they get funded, you know, pretty well by it. Again, would never happen, just my two cents.

I did not plan on typing this much text but I thought I might as well. Thanks for reading my crap if you did, and if you didn't here's your TLDR: P2W isn't wanted but required if a server doesn't want to use P2P.
 
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TTuller

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#5
I think that ManaCube has one of the best comparisons of F2P and P2W. The same things can be achieved whether you spend money or not. To me it seems like many people confuse "Pay for cool features that are nice to have" and "Pay to win." If you really take the time to compare ManaCube to other minecraft servers it becomes very clear how much we are not P2W

In respects to Olympus, because thats what I know, Mana Top is the only leaderboard that can truly be bought. But the amount you have to spend to do even do that is so unnecessary, the $200 reward isn't really a reward. And at the point are you really even winning?
 

Tasses

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#7
One thing that we must remember is that p2w does not mean "impossible to get if you don't pay." You can buy as many legendary keys as you want if you grind enough cubits, but the fact that you can simply buy them without having to grind cubits is what makes it p2w. Players who can afford to purchase keys and minions at the beginning of seasons have a noticeable head start on players who have to rely on cubits. Sure, you can save up your cubits for 3 months - or you could just cash in your paycheck.

Pay-to-win is a serious issue. I believe that donating/ranking up should be a way to support the server, and the reward for this should be enjoyable cosmetic perks such as chat colours, nicknames, join messages, titles, and auras. Exclusive Discord channels and betas are also strong incentives to support a server you enjoy playing on. However I do not think this should cross the line into perks that actually affect gameplay, such as speed*, minions, course completion bonuses, and high-tier mines. This gives a serious advantage to players who can afford to make regular purchases, and hinders the growth of players who can't. And when end-of-season payouts are involved, you can see why the players who get to the top stay at the top.

It seems like Factions is on the right track, but the other servers should get some serious consideration towards following suit. It's unarguable that servers like Aether and Oasis which have game-altering perks for donors as well as payouts are dominated by the players who can afford the top tiers.

As for that point about cubit coinflips: sure, anyone can bet cubits and get rapid growth. But the players who can afford it can just cash in PayPal for cubits ingame, and now look who has more cubits to gamble with.

*Note that it's possible to get all VIP perks (speed, nicks, etc.) through the Mapper rank, which is absolutely free. We need more things like this. MVP+ literally gets DOUBLE THE MANA from completing courses that non-donors do.
 

AZNCreeper

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#8
As a f2p player I can confirm that by working hard you can achieve anything that p2w players can. I’m not meaning to flex, but by using cubits (buying from players, coinflipping, voting, etc) I was able to go from non-ranked to elite and buy 4 infinity chests on oasis this season alone.

However, the fact that I started when skyblock reset helped a lot—cubit prices were low so I was able to obtain a large amount very quickly. 4 months into the season, on the other hand, prices have inflated to the point where it is literally impossible for new players without infinity chests to keep up with the market, leaving them with voting and /Gary for their main source of consistent cubit flow. This is where being f2p becomes an issue as new players are unable to catch up in the slightest. If 2 new members joined at the same time now, with one being f2p and one being p2w, it’s clear to see who will advance far quicker.

I guess my point here is that by being f2p you still stand a chance given favorable circumstances, but p2w still presents itself as a huge issue to f2p players.
 
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skrts

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#9
I think a great case study to observe is with how Ive been able to get number 1 through survival purely through cubits, I saved up around 500 and lantern around 100 something cubits before the season had began, through in game buying, bulk selling igs, and off server grinding, this made it very easy for us to keep up with the p2w, because the amount was tantamount to the p2ws budget. As survival doesnt have a player that spends as much as say swaae or ozzyblack (although swaae doesnt play anymore), even people who do p2w, tend not to be smart with the p2w.

The real concern with p2w is when it is in the hands of a great player or group of players, people who understand the most value to buy with money, and if a theoretically infinite irl budget is given to such a group, it would effectively lock out all sensible play on survival hither to cheating and limit bypassing. Currently on most servers that are grind based I observe and played on, survival is very f2p friendly, olympus is very f2p friendly, factions is f2p, islands is dead enough that it is f2p friendly, skyblock i have not played enough of to say, parkour i can imagine with epearls the economy would be weird, kitpvp is obviously run by elite kits and higher.

However I believe that the biggest discussion to be had is the existence of the ELITE rank, this rank is by far the single highest purchase u can buy on this server, through cubits or irl. It is 87.5 dollars without sale to upgrade from the second highest rank mvp+. the existence of elite i believe causes a lot of salt within the community, particularly with those in eco servers like sb, surv, islan, and oly, have elite discounts, which is a huge part of every economy, and if you dont have a baller elite friend as a mvp+, you are just left super sad and left nearly impossible to compete with good elite players, i can verify that with pretty much only the elite rank i was able to get my islands group to top 3, through afking and using the elite perks.

I think there is a skill cieling and skill floor with both p2w and f2p

With the cieling for f2p infinitely high, and skill floor infinitely low
And the cieling for p2w capping out mid season, and skill floor fairly high
 

Snakey2k

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#10
This is one of the very few Minecraft servers (I tried hundreds before landing here over a year ago) that has an alternative currency that can be spent in its webstore.
Meaning you can "earn" what is available for purchase. So that's nice.
P2W is the unfortunate future of gaming. More and more developers wouldn't be going this route if they weren't making as much or more money through this method.
society9.jpg
 

Tasses

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#11
I think a great case study to observe is with how Ive been able to get number 1 through survival purely through cubits, I saved up around 500 and lantern around 100 something cubits before the season had began, through in game buying, bulk selling igs, and off server grinding, this made it very easy for us to keep up with the p2w, because the amount was tantamount to the p2ws budget. As survival doesnt have a player that spends as much as say swaae or ozzyblack (although swaae doesnt play anymore), even people who do p2w, tend not to be smart with the p2w.
Yes, but grinding those 500 cubits must've been a lot of work, right? Probably would've been a lot easier if you'd just spent 500$ PayPal. Thus, it's P2W.
 

skrts

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#12
Yes, but grinding those 500 cubits must've been a lot of work, right? Probably would've been a lot easier if you'd just spent 500$ PayPal. Thus, it's P2W.
It was work, relatively, obviously easier to just spend 500, but Im saying it was done, and it was doable enough that I managed to do it by myself
 

Tasses

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#13
It was work, relatively, obviously easier to just spend 500, but Im saying it was done, and it was doable enough that I managed to do it by myself
But my point is, what does this prove? Again, p2w =/= p2p - sure you can spend a long grind on cubits, or you could, yknow, play minigames instead and just cash in some dough. When people complain about the server being p2w, they're not saying it's impossible to do blank without paying; it just shouldn't be vastly quicker/easier to get to the same place with irl money.
 

skrts

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#14
But my point is, what does this prove? Again, p2w =/= p2p - sure you can spend a long grind on cubits, or you could, yknow, play minigames instead and just cash in some dough. When people complain about the server being p2w, they're not saying it's impossible to do blank without paying; it just shouldn't be vastly quicker/easier to get to the same place with irl money.
To that I agree, Im just saying through intelligent play its very easy to get past the p2w folks, cause lets face it most p2w players are not the best at the game, they get carried through p2w and usually doesnt end up number 1. In survivals case, never number 1. The problem I see with p2w is, when a player that is extremely good already without p2w, acquires p2w funding, it is by default over for all other players.

Once again, I will say that at least now with survivals hard eco plateau, even with p2w you cannot, unless you do it on the first day, get past the players who are already have hit eco plateau, players on survival such as recknate and panda who have either been completely p2w (like recknate), or a big margin p2w (like panda), they still have not even inched close to the top 3 of the leadearboards, the problem of p2w starts to matter less and less the further into the season it is. This is why p2w is only a real issue on a very few servers, parkour, skyblock (not sure cause i dont play), and islands (which is completely dead so why bother)
 

skrts

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#15
And a continuation of that, as ttuller stated before, and also in calls with me, he mentioned that there is only really one leaderboard you can effectively p2w, and it is WHALE level p2w (meaning a shit ton of money), to even inch close to that reward, and unless the player REALLy wants a star, the money reward is nulled by how much the spent for it.
 

Riffet

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#16
i see no problem in the non-competetive gamemodes that manacube has P2W in, for example survival, which if you are P2W you don't really get an advantage. I imagine that those gamemodes only offer cosmetics or OP items that are basically useless.
 

rew

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#17
Now the topic of p2w has been relevant more recently than before, due to the influx of new players and new patrons spending more and more on keys every release of a crate. The prominent debate amongst f2p and p2w players is, does the p2winners make the playing experience objectively worse for f2p and lower spending players, particularly old players?

I can personally see both sides of the spectrum, having played mostly f2p and mostly p2w on seasons 3 and 6 of manacube survival, with 3 being my biggest p2w ever. I ended up placing second place on p top even with the surplus of p2w. While in season 6, spending most of my time not putting a dime in, I have managed to do so far, very well.

The argument for f2p is, the p2winners, or rather the enabling of such p2w, makes being f2p objectively less fun, prices get inflated, the market is servicing only the mega rich who have strong standings already due to p2w.

Now the flipside to this argument is, the p2w players DON'T get a free ticket to win, or control the economy, and that the f2p players need to learn to grind and get better in order to fend for themselves, this season for me was strategized due to prior cubit grinding in order to keep up with p2w

This brings up the final crux of the debate, the existence of a cubit market, and a cubit flipping arena. The market for cubits presents the ability for theoretically any f2p/low spender have just as much power as the p2w, the existence of the cubit flipping arena also allows for theoretically any player with the right luck and prediction of the flipping system, get to p2w levels of greatness.

The flipside to this again is, the f2p do not have a good enough starting ground to learn the selling and buying and flipping of cubits, as they do not have the base funds. But to that argument exists voting and daily rewards, but of that most f2p do not pay enough attention to to win the 20 cubits every month.

Now the end of the debate draws a concluding argument for both sides, git gud, versus, stop p2winning u no skills, which I find very interesting, now what are your thoughts on this topic, is the enabling of p2winning harmful to the f2p, or do the f2p need to simply, git gud, at the game?
This is one of the main reasons many people hate manacube. Its horrible in balancing p2w and just makes it a battle of bids for any rewards. Sad to see a promising server go so bad.