Introduce alpha-only skills

Aim

  • Increase proportion of alpha clones who are casual yet active players. Do this by giving them something unique to do.

  • Increase game content across player base by ensuring omega players only have access to new skills by interacting via third party alphas.

  • Increase existing revenue stream for CCP.

Mechanism

  • Introduce new skills and modules that are alpha-only.

  • Restrict access to alpha clones who already have five million skill points.

  • Charge for access via set number of daily alpha injectors.

Suggestions

  • Introduce new skills eg Space Janitor V – reduces salvaging outcome to a single cycle.

  • Introduce new module eg Janitor’s MTU – expanded capability to pull yellow wrecks.

  • (Insert other ideas here …)

Variation on theme

  • Increase alpha access to existing skills but using same payment mechanism eg Mining Barge I (but restrict to covetor-only)

Rationale

  • Main(?) revenue for alpha clones is missions but salvaging painfully slow – improving rate improves isk?

  • Alpha have limited number sale contracts and trades – selling bulk salvage likely via omega or corp buyback?

  • Access to yellow wrecks will encourage omega to shoot salvagers and/or get alpha-salvager in fleet

  • Covetor only holds 7000 m3 vs 5000 m3 for venture but operates 2.5 x faster - better revenue for alpha but also increases number of gank magnets for everyone

  • Alpha covetors increases content eg nul fleets with alpha covetors, high sec solo jet-canning

  • Costs might be “reasonable” eg 20 daily injectors for Janitor V - plus 40 for Janitor’s MTU?

  • Costs might be relatively punitive eg 10 injectors for Barge I – vs single 16 min skill training for omega, as trade-off for being a one-off payment

  • alpha-only skills self-identifies clones and introduces new gameplay of “hunt the alpha”

1 Like

By design. Upgrade to Omega if you want to increase your “revenue.”

By design. Upgrade to Omega if you want more contracts and trading slots.

lmao, no.

By design. Upgrade to Omega if you want to use a Covetor.

No they don’t. Upgrade to Omega if you want to use a Covetor.

The rest of this is just entitled whining.

TL:DR; Upgrade to Omega. Stop being such an entitled child.

10 Likes

How would this increase revenue to CCP? Making desirable features single-purchase unlocks instead of subscription-bound is actually a net loss to CCP’s income stream.

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Who is the “you” in this context?

Are you saying that CCP do not want to retain a core of alpha clone players? And, in that context, are you (Scoots) saying that any ideas that might possibly retain such players are therefore not warranted?

Why not? Genuine question. You obviously have an opinion on the topic. Are you saying that if I, or anyone else, can hoover up yellow wrecks via MTU that no-one will in fact care? If that is so, why not let alpha players pay for the option to do just that?

This is all based on retaining alpha players by encouraging them to pay for something they might like - something that not even an omega can get. It is just not based on a subscription payment model. You don’t have to like the suggestion, but you haven’t told me yet as to why you dont like it.

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Possibly. I don’t know enough to judge in absolute terms. However, I do know that CCP have effectively already used this model by increasing the flat 5 mil SP allowed for alpha to 21.5(?) mil SP based on exactly that single-purchase unlock model.

The only difference in my suggestion is to increase the unlocks from something other than cross-training into yet another racial option for shooting stuff. I’m not wedded to the salvaging suggestions, they were just that … suggestions as conversation starters.

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That’s factually incorrect. Alpha characters were never capped at 5 million total SP. They simply stop being able to train skills passively once they reach that much SP on their character sheet - wherher it is assigned to a skill or not.

The 21-something million SP figure is also not a direct limitation, rather, it reflects the number of skill points in Alpha-accessible skills. This number has increased over time as new skills have been added to the game (like the EDENCOM and Precursor ship and weapon skills). There is no limit on the number of skill points an Alpha character can have, only on the points they can leverage via active skills. For example, if an Omega character with every single skill trained dropped to Alpha state, they wouldn’t lose any SP - but they would only get benefit from the SP invested in Alpha-unlocked skills which total approximately 21m SP at present.

Alpha pilots receive free SP from daily tasks, log in rewards. and events. They do not have to buy injectors to exceed the 5m SP mark, though as with any other pilot (regardless of clone state), they may choose to spend money to speed up their SP acquisition.

The difference there is the benefits they gain as an Alph remain in effect if they go to Omega state, and are still there if they subsequently revert to an Alpha again. Your proposal is for things that are locked to only the Alpha state - which would actually discourage players from upgrading to Omega and thus cost CCP ongoing income from recurring subscription revenues.

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I stand corrected. I did not realize that injectors were not in fact introduced sometime after alpha clone state in order to deliberately extend available points.

This is semantics, but I acknowledge (again) its technical correctness. If it was not clear, I was referring at all stages to the functional limits in skill points that alpha clones have access to. (Hence my mistaken belief that alpha previously had a limit of only 5 M functional points unless they paid for access to additional skills.)

That I did not know. That very question was posed by me on the rookie channel but got zero replies. In itself, it would also seem to effectively undercut my suggestion of encouraging alpha to pay for more if they can already get it for free.

That is true. My proposal was more in the reverse tho - if players are reluctant to go omega, was (is) there a way to give them more gameplay, that might also give CCP some more money, yet without upsetting omega players (too much)?

The whole premise here is that by making alpha unlimited in time, presumably CCP wants to have a working core of perma-alpha players? Yes? No? If yes, presumably this would be for “content generation”., which my idea is also based on. But, if definitely “no”, then as per Scoots apparent preference, you can just dump my suggestion as a non-starter.

Yep. CCP wants them to convert to paying customers ASAP. An alpha that remains an alpha is a failure.

The whole premise here is that by making alpha unlimited in time, presumably CCP wants to have a working core of perma-alpha players?

No. The premise is that the old 21 day trial was awkward for many players because it was based on calendar time rather than time spent in game and running into a hard “your account can no longer be accessed” wall turned away potential customers. So CCP instead made the trial unlimited in duration but limited progression to a point that you’re heavily discouraged from staying in alpha status once you’ve played long enough to reach the limit.

OK. Well, that’s the end of this conversation. Lol.

PS (EDIT - or whatever) altho, it doesn’t quite explain why CCP still introduced a single-purchase model to deliberately let alphas further expand being alpha. But, I will let that go.

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While it may seem like semantics, it is actually a very important distinction that a lot of players don’t understand; it has led to concerns about dropping from Omega to Alpha state and whether a player can apply SP to Alpha skills at that point if over 20m SP total between Alpha and Omega skill levels, and about whether or not players will keep being able to redeem their log in rewards/event SP beyond 20m SP as an Alpha account.

As for the purpose of Alpha accounts:
CCP would like to have players who are comfortable spending extended time in an Alpha state - they do not expect nor intend for all Alphas to either become Omega or quit.

That said, CCP also has very intentionally limited the income generation abilities of Alpha accounts due to serious capability for free accounts to impact the player-driven market. For example, restricting Alpha pilots to the Venture mining vessel places a hard limit on the m3 output of any given Alpha account. A lot of these considerations are driven by the reality that there are unscrupulous players out there who have no interest i. following CCP’s EULA and ToS - so the options for free-to-play account have to be limited so that they cannot be profitably abused by said unscrupulous players who want to maximize their ISK for use in illegal RMT activities.

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This is true. An alpha remaining alpha instead of quitting entirely is desirable. But it’s still much less desirable than that alpha becoming a paying customer, and its primary value is that because the alpha remains engaged with the game CCP keeps the chance to convince them to become a paying customer. CCP’s ideal state is 100% paying customers after only a short trial period and anything less than that is at least some degree of failure.

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You can have barge yeld as alpha.

And if you know a game at lest tiny bit. You would know that you can make isk for omega in around week from first day.

plex on market is not from thin air. any omega account in game is revenue for CCP. No matter if you are paying or exchanging isk for someone else money.

Yeah, but hold on there Bald Eagle. That was all I was proposing in the first place - a mechanism to encourage players who wont go as far as paying a subscription to at least pay - something !

Ah, that’s a neat distinction. I was deliberately proposing starting at 5 mil SP, so that the alpha account was no longer functionally free, if trying to expand at least. However, altho that might give revenue to CCP, I accept it could still have market implications. (But, would salvage really have that much impact on the “global” market??)

Ok? I’m not sure what that has to do with the quote you’re replying to, since I don’t dispute the fact that omega accounts paid for with PLEX are still paying customers.

But you’re doing it in the form of alpha-only skills that encourage players to remain alpha to avoid losing those skills.

Also, the end result of “not quite omega” subscription options is often that omega accounts scale down because the new option is sufficient to run a particular alt, and that loss of revenue may offset any gains from alpha players buying the “not quite omega” option instead of nothing. It’s dangerous territory for CCP to get into.

A famous person once said “No No No”

Yes, I agree. Which was also deliberate. Meaning this is where it becomes a tad circular.

My idea was to encourage alpha players, who do not want to be omega, to at least be active players. Thereby adding (more) content. But, this might also just discourage already active alpha players from becoming omega.

I was hoping that by targeting something like salvage - the revenue from which is restricted by the deliberate restrictions on alpha trading - that it would encourage interaction between alpha and omega players instead. So, rather than scale down an omega, it would be cheaper for an omega player to find (and befriend) a suitable alpha? Isnt that again a major premise of CCP, to discourage solo play in favor of player interaction instead?

What you could do, is get alot of people together, raise money, buy CCP, do as you like with Eve then.

2 Likes

As someone less famous said …

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