Lost Ark Closed Technical Alpha

Lost Ark Closed Technical Alpha

This topic has been locked
Soul Jun 12 @ 2:31am
3
2
11
3
2
10
The game's Pay to Win. Here's my comprehensive experience on LAO RU and LAO KR.
The game is pay to win. I'm not going to bother arguing with people about the definition of pay to win. However, I'm going to write everything I experienced in the game, so you can decide whether you want to play or not.

The game is action combat, like Tera/BDO/Diablo 3. However, the camera is Isometric, like Diablo 3.

During release, the game will be gated, so people can pay to increase their item levels faster, but if you play normally and do your daily/weekly farming, you can reach the same ilvl as the whales because ilvl is hard capped, meaning there's a max you can reach at the time.

However, once the hardcap is lifted, the next patch will bring you to the softcapped ilvl. If you did your daily/weekly farming as efficiently as possible for a week you might be able to get to 700-800 ilvl from 550. The problem starts here, there's no hardcap, so if you are a whale and wants to dump $10,000 to $20,000 into the game. You can reach the softcap which is about 1200-1300 ilvl in 1 week. Since the powercreep in LAO is exponential, it means someone with 1200-1300 ilvl will do 5-10 times the damage you do.

The problem is, in order to reach 1200-1300 ilvl without spending any real money, you are going to have to farm for about 3-5 years as the average player. There are some players that have 10 different accounts and they will farm on all of them to maximize their gold per day.

Other than gear, there are also food, potions, combat necessities which all cost gold. Another big thing is engravings. Engravings are something you put on your rings, they will then give you a passive buff that stay with you at all times outside of the arena.

Since there are whales they probably have the right engravings(which also cost millions of gold at this stage of the game btw and increase your damage in PVE by 20-30% for each engraving, you can have 2 active engravings at a time.) To put millions of gold into perspective, everyday you get 3 tickets to farm ingredients, whether for alchemy, fishing, hunting, whatever. With some luck, you can make a couple hundred gold per 1 ticket.

Now comes Season 2. The ilvl limit will increase once again as new gear/bosses comes out. On average the f2p players reached about 900-1000 when season 2 started. the whales once again reached 1500+ in the first week or two, hitting the softcap and becoming 10-15 times stronger than the people at 1000.

It's been 6 months or so since Season 2 released. The average ilvl is between 1200-1300 for the f2p people who aren't farming on multiple accounts. Which is basically the soft cap for f2p players.

Now I will explain how the soft cap works. After the first phase of the game. The game use a similar upgrade system as Black Desert Online. What this means is, every time you upgrade an item's lvl, its stats increases. However, every third upgrade in lvl, the chance to fail will increase. Luckily, when you fail the upgrade, the item won't be destroyed or anything. Also, every time you fail, the chance of upgrading the same item again will increase by a little bit. Each upgrade will cost gold and silver. Gold is the currency you can trade between players or buy with real money, while silver is a currency that is bound to your character and cannot be traded, but you can buy silver with gold through a vendor, it is very costly, at about 1000 gold per 10000 silver(I never did it so I don't remember if this is accurate, I just remember other people saying it's a rip off.)

So, bottom line. To reach ilvl 1200-1300 in the first week of that raid's release. You will need to spend $10,000-20,000, and this was in Russia and South Korea, where their cost of living and gdp are lower than USA and Western Europe.

In season 2, upon the release of the new raid, they improved the chances for you to upgrade your gear, so you will be able to reach 1500+ ilvl in the first week by spending about $5,000.

I don't know how long it takes to reach 1500 while being f2p, but some people who farm on 10 accounts have reached 1400 in 6 months.

Now I will make a list(As comprehensive as my memory can make it) of the expenses in game.

Rerolling skill enhancing effects on items
Rerolling stats on items
Consumables
Tickets to enter a raid/dungeon/boss
Bidding on gear(In most cases, in order to get a peace of gear in a raid or a tome for engravings, you need to bid against others like an auction, whoever has the highest bid wins. Then that gold is distributed among all participants.)
Character slots: You need to buy character tickets to open slots to make more characters.
Ship and Ship upgrade materials .
Cards

PVE:

It is action combat. There's no dedicated tank or healer. Bards have shields, buffs, and a heal. They can typically heal you for 50% of your health every few minutes. There's also a shield wielding class that can taunt the boss for several seconds every 30 seconds or so. Otherwise the boss will target people randomly and reset aggro every several seconds.

There's no DPS meter or logs, so you will never know whether you are doing good enough or not, also you will never know who in the group is slacking or taking too much damage. Who is and isn't using the right potions/bombs/skills.

The bosses basic attacks can take between 10-90% of your health depending on what boss/attack/your damage reduction. Boss abilities will typically hit harder. Almost all attacks will CC you either by staggering/freeze/stun/knock up/knock down/etc.

Instanced Bosses: Rewards gear or items needed to craft gear or upgrade gear. There are several tiers of bosses, each tier is harder than the last. You can get rewards from 3 bosses from each tier every day. There are also weekly bosses, those require tickets and you can only get rewards from them once a week.

Instanced bosses are expensive and some of them have soft enrage timers while all of them a hard enrage timer. When you reach the hard enrage timer everybody will die.

You will need consumables.
1, you cannot see a boss on the minimap without using something called a flare. In a random team, it is assumed each person will use 1 flare in the order of their group number. This actually gets very expensive because many bosses will fly away or burrow under ground and move to a different location of the map during the encounter, multiple times. It takes 1 person 5 minutes to cover the entire map. So if you want to try without flares, well, it's going to be very inconvenient since there's a hard enrage timer of 20 minutes and many encounters have 3 bosses you have to kill to get the rewards. You won't get rewards for killing just 1/3 or 2/3.

2: Health potions. There are two types of health potions, normal and % health. You cannot use normal pots in these encounters. The worst % health potion only heal you for 15% of your max health. You can use 3 max of them during the whole 20 minutes. Then, there's the 30/45/60% max health potions. You can use 5 of them in the whole encounter at max. Of course, they are increasingly more expensive.

3: Bombs. In order to break or stagger a boss, you will need different kinds of bombs or skills. Not all classes have all the right skills to break a certain boss. That's why sometimes bombs are necessities.

4: Scarecrows. Scareccrows will taunt the boss for 5-10 seconds, if you out gear the boss it is probably not required but if you are all at the minimum level requirement these are essential for some bosses as they allow your entire team to stand still and dps for 10 seconds.

Note, you do not get your consumables back if you fail the encounter, it just means all the consumables/or ticket(for weekly boss) are wasted.

Raids: Rewards gear, costs tickets, but you can get rewards from them as many times as you want to do them. They are also not too difficult as you can use normal potions. So the main cost in these are the tickets.

Dungeons: Rewards gear or tickets, generally pretty easy.
World Bosses: Generally pretty easy but has a reset timer, also scales with the amount of people attacking it.

World Events: There are events all over the world on islands or big continents, they will show up on the your in game schedule, most of them are easy. There are good rewards for doing them. Usually they have a limit on how many you can do a day or a week.

To elaborate about command tickets, the ones you get 3 of everyday for free, most events in the command center cost command tickets. It used to cost 1 per event when the game came out but now cost several but the rewards also boosted by several times. It used to be character-based, meaning each character get 3 a day, but now it is account based, so your entire account get 3 per day.

Cube(cost command tickets) : Similar to instanced bosses, you can only use expensive consumables. The way to go through cubes is to clear waves of monsters. There's a timer for each wave and you get rewards depending on how many waves you clear. Usually the waves get harder as you progress, but each wave can either give you a buff or debuff. Sometimes you get really bad debuffs like 30% movement speed slow and total darkness(which means you get like a 90% vision reduction), and get a bomb wave(basically suicide bombers that run toward you and explode.) Some bomb explosions will cover half the room, so you won't even see the suicide bomber. Only 1 person need to be alive to clear the wave, so the other 3 people will be revived after the wave clears, but they only get 10-20% of their health back when they revive.


Farming(cost command tickets): there are two locations, each supporting 3 different professions. You need specific skill levels to farm the highest lvl objects. To do this you need tools, the best tools will increase your skill level by a few, allowing to harvest the highest lvl objects. You can't harvest the highest level objects without tools. Tools cost silver and gold to make or buy. There's a timer so you need to have a farming gearset to maximize your profit in the farmlands.

Tower: tower is a solo event where you climb through floors, you can only use expensive consumables. Your health resets every for each floor. Some lvls require very specific items. For example, there's a floor where you fight a boss with a silence debuff. When silenced, you cannot use abilities or even use basic attack, you can only consumables.

PVP:

There are several different types of arenas. The ranked arena is 3v3, where you have 2 teammates gathered via LFG, completely random. You cannot form groups to join. It is timed, so the team with the highest kill count wins the match mostly.

Then there's normal arena. 1v1, 3v3, and FFA. In normal arena, you can enter with friends for the first two modes. 1v1 is not a solo event, it is called last man standing, you join with 2 others on your team. However, it is in the form of a 1v1. If you win the first round, you will fight the 2nd person on the enemy team with whatever health you have left, your cooldowns do not reset either. If you win again you fight the last person. Whichever team
has the last man standing wins. Each round also has a timer, whoever has the highest health wins if the timer comes up.

In all the arenas, your ilvl will be equalized for the most part, but the stats on your gear still matter in the sense of distribution. PVP typically has different desired stats than PVE.

Island PVP happens on the some of the hundreds of islands around the world. There is no gear equalizer so whoever is whaling wins. They can also use bombs and kill 5-10 people with each bomb. There's an Island heart(Collector item that gives you very useful rewards if you get them.) where you are locked onto an island that's only big enough to fit 10 players side by side. Idk if there's a limit to how many people can actually enter the island at once. You fight free for all in order to open boxes to have a 1% chance of obtaining the island heart. There's 3 boxes on the island that each respawn every few minutes or so. Every time you are hit by an attack, it cancels your opening of the chest. Good luck getting that Island Heart, honestly.

Guild VS GUILD. It's like a 10v10 battleground of capture the flag or defend the node. Gear is also not equalized here so it's just for the whales.

CC in pvp: every attack staggers you. There's several different types of cc, stagger/knock/hard cc. There are many skills or abilities that make you immune to stagger. There are some that make you immune to physical CC which means the knocking. There are no skills that make you immune to hard cc. You can however be immune to all cc in 2 instances. One, you are using your spacebar evasion. The animation lasts between 0.1-.5 seconds depending on your class. This has a 5-10s cooldown. During the animation, you are immune to all cc. Two, you got knocked down and is in the process of getting up. Three, you used space bar while knocked down, you will jump back up, this has a very long cooldown.

In general, if you get chain cc'd you are probably dead. Getting chain cc'd from 100-0 isn't that uncommon.

Island Exploration: Exploration is a big part of the game. You need a number of Island Hearts to advance to the next continents. You will obviously have a ship for traveling between islands. There's many ships, each have different requirement for getting it, some are easy and some are extremely hard. For example, to get the fastest ship, if you are trying to progress your gear at the same time, and is a f2p that's not farming on 10 different accounts, you are probably never going to get it. Even if you did, you still have to upgrade it to max level, which is probably never going to happen since it's expensive as hell to even upgrade a cheaper ship to max.

Also you are going to have to upgrade the ships to unlock more slots for the for the sailors. Each sailor(an npc you collect) have a different ability that will be helpful.


Alternatively, can you board an ingame ship for a chunk of silver, how much it costs depends on where you are traveling to. But this is only for continental travel, you can't go to islands or spots on the map in the sea.

Many events or islands will require you to have a specific ship upgraded to a specific level, otherwise your ship will be destroyed and you can't get on the island for the event.

There are also many events where you need a specific profession. For example to get the island heart on mushroom island you need lumbering. Where you cut lvl 4 mushrooms, without lumbering you can only cut the lvl 1 mushroom. There's about 12 nodes on the island and only 1-3 lvl 1 mushroom will be up at any given time. The lvl 1 shroom has a very low drop rate of the island heart, the lvl 4 shrooms have maybe 1-5% droprate? While the lvl 1 is 10x lower. Unfortunately, you are going to need more characters because each character can only max out 1 profession.

That's about all I can think of. Might've missed some things.
Last edited by Soul; Jun 13 @ 12:34am
< >
Showing 1-15 of 274 comments
Burn One Twice Jun 12 @ 2:56am 
Well, I read the entire thing and all I have to say is..............

♥♥♥♥.

Glad I didn't drop that hundo yet. This is the type of egregious p2w BS that will make sure I uninstall this game with the utmost haste.

Absolutely disgusting and extremely disappointing.
Last edited by Burn One Twice; Jun 12 @ 2:57am
belle Jun 12 @ 2:58am 
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Although I believe some points are little bit exaggerated, outdated from S1, and disagree some of points you've made, I believe you made a decent summary of the game.
Regardless of being P2W or not, people should play the way they want.
Smilegate and amazon are working closely to make the p2w aspects of game less aggressive for western release, but who knows what will happen.
Last edited by belle; Jun 14 @ 8:10pm
Originally posted by belle:
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Although I disagree some of points you've made, I believe you made a good summary of the game.
Regardless of being P2W or not, people should play the way they want.
Smilegate and amazon are working closely to make the p2w aspects of game less aggressive for western release, but who knows what will happen.

After reading the OP I don't see how they can add any of the p2w elements the OP has described without causing a massive backlash.

What the OP describes isn't subtle p2w, it is flamboyantly p2w. Unless their plan is to remove all of it and boil it down simply to cosmetics this game has a tough road ahead on this side of the pond.

I love ARPGs but if what OP describes is what can be expected forget spending a dime, I wont download this game on release period and I will convince my friends to do the same.
belle Jun 12 @ 3:13am 
Originally posted by Burn One Twice:
Originally posted by belle:
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Although I disagree some of points you've made, I believe you made a good summary of the game.
Regardless of being P2W or not, people should play the way they want.
Smilegate and amazon are working closely to make the p2w aspects of game less aggressive for western release, but who knows what will happen.

After reading the OP I don't see how they can add any of the p2w elements the OP has described without causing a massive backlash.

What the OP describes isn't subtle p2w, it is flamboyantly p2w. Unless their plan is to remove all of it and boil it down simply to cosmetics this game has a tough road ahead on this side of the pond.

I love ARPGs but if what OP describes is what can be expected forget spending a dime, I wont download this game on release period and I will convince my friends to do the same.

Understood. Do what you gotta do
Last edited by belle; Jun 12 @ 3:16am
Is the guy basing all this from the versions of the game that haven't reach NA, UK & EU? As the Korean game is P2W purely because it's the way things are, I doubt this game will be that bad.

However it's not really P2W if you play solo or co-op, maybe so in the PVP part of the game, I'm not so much bothered by all that and I don't like to waste money to end the game fast, the whole point of playing games is to play at your pace and enjoy your time, if people want to pump money in to leveling their characters ilvl ect then that's up to them, doesn't really bother me one bit, these people can help me level up lol
Originally posted by Bloodwolff:
Is the guy basing all this from the versions of the game that haven't reach NA, UK & EU? As the Korean game is P2W purely because it's the way things are, I doubt this game will be that bad.

However it's not really P2W if you play solo or co-op, maybe so in the PVP part of the game, I'm not so much bothered by all that and I don't like to waste money to end the game fast, the whole point of playing games is to play at your pace and enjoy your time, if people want to pump money in to leveling their characters ilvl ect then that's up to them, doesn't really bother me one bit, these people can help me level up lol

It's all well and good until these are the guys nuking you in 2 globals in PvP or gatekeeping groups to ridiculously high standards that only other whales are capable of reaching in PvE.

The fact that the KR implementation has stupid amounts of P2W invalidates any benefit of the doubt I would have to give.

Based on OP's account of LA's P2W practices we need to watch what they do with the in-game shop very closely as the release date approaches.
the only thing that matters is the 1v1 and 3v3 arena which are equalized. if you play anything else you are a carebear crying about pve lmao
barony03 Jun 12 @ 4:11am 
Ok i got it how it works on Korea and Russia. But how the heck you know thats how will it work on EU/NA? They know p2w games in our regions will just die and hopes they will do it in other ways. We will see
Thanks for the summary. I will stay far away from this game. Played alpha though and it plain sux. Not my type of game.
Sparhawk Jun 12 @ 4:18am 
platinum it is then! thanks for wall of text.
Last edited by Sparhawk; Jun 12 @ 4:20am
Prince Vegeta Jun 12 @ 4:38am 
Legit its rare that anyone actually cares about p2w. You have a PC and these days thats pay to win, gonna sell your PC?
If I remember the paying to increase your gear was a pre 2.0 "feature" designed specifically for korea which obviously got into russia as well because they didn't want to develop anything themselves. Where the norm in those countries usually is mobile gacha, KR has long work days so the catch up of paying to increase was there.

The game has been designed around a subscription factor, from a design point of view if you are subscribed you are playing the game often enough to warrant a subscription, if not, you probably aren't playing all day every day. Its a commonly implemented factor in MMO development, you implement the systems of dailies and lockouts to keep a modicum of flow; make sure people aren't throwing their lives into the game. Then you cater for the potential hardcore or long term players, ease up on restrictions because they are literally paying for you to work and they are playing the game, win / win. Any of the specifics within that doesn't come across the initial design, the platform is created THEN things are added to it, each one of those things has their own development meeting which ends up going on for a month or so because the designer comes back near the end and says they want it to do something different...

As other people have stated, you have brought this up from countries that don't have any control, where people don't care. You know theres a vast number of players in RU/KR that are actually western? You coming here with a large post of acclaimed experience adds to that, and suggests that you also followed the paid trend. But that is the normal in those countries, paying to advance, paying for convenience. And in the west where its currently under heavy law and restrictions concerning various factors of microtransactions you'd be stupid to release the game without validating your microtransaction plan. A game now actually has to know various future inclusions to a item shop, the price, their effect, their reflective rates (enhancement things if they are in the shop) and they go through an arduous process of back and forth between a publishing body and a government middle man before the government turns around and says "All clear".
You have also mentioned it from the day 1 experience, we have various features and classes of the 2.0 client, we might not be season 2 but we are more or less on the same version. All this doomsaying when you, yourself would have been an advocate of pay to win.
If you are gonna play the game, spend the £5 or w/e for the subscription

The fact you put PVE as a standpoint of claiming against P2W, how the ♥♥♥♥ do you win in pve? what are you winning against? The devs? no, they have your money so you haven't won there.
I stoped caring about this topic after i read the authors first sentence about P2W.

Koreans like P2W, but its known that the western audience dont like it. Smilegate and amazon are trying their best to adjust and balance the game without the P2W Elements, which were implemenred from the start in korea and japan.

This whole discussion about P2W Elements I am getting so damn tired off this.
Last edited by ラグナ [Aracune]; Jun 12 @ 4:51am
Soul Jun 12 @ 1:22pm 
Originally posted by barony03:
Ok i got it how it works on Korea and Russia. But how the heck you know thats how will it work on EU/NA? They know p2w games in our regions will just die and hopes they will do it in other ways. We will see
I hope so also, if they did this I will play the game on NA, if they continue with the same model as RU and KR then I will just pass. The problem is the game is designed to be a p2w game. With low droprates, lots of grinding, and low upgrade chances. So if they make it not p2w they will need to substantially raise the chances. Since the game is free to play it will be hard for it not to be a p2w game.
Aeden Jun 12 @ 1:31pm 
Originally posted by Soul:
Tickets to enter a raid/dungeon/boss
Bidding on gear(In most cases, in order to get a peace of gear in a raid or a tome for engravings, you need to bid against others like an auction, whoever has the highest bid wins. Then that gold is distributed among all participants.)

This is all I needed to know. I quit Blade & Soul over that same garbage bidding system.
Teran Jun 12 @ 2:14pm 
Who cares? I'm paying my $24 and expect to get $24 worth of fun out of the game. Even if I had $30k to spend on the game I'm still not good enough to be world class. Why does everyone judge their potential enjoyment of these types of games based on whether or not they'll be in the top .01%?
< >
Showing 1-15 of 274 comments
Per page: 15 30 50

Date Posted: Jun 12 @ 2:31am
Posts: 275