Smed Delivers! All SOE $15/mo Subs Become “All Access”, 500SC Returns, Player Studio Included

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash, EQ2, Player Studio

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After last week’s changes to Gold Subscriptions for EverQuest, EverQuest II, DCUO, PlanetSide 2, and All Access passes were announced, I was certain that regardless of how much player feedback came out against the changes, little would change.

After 6 years, I guess I can still be surprised by Sony Online Entertainment.

Just over 1 hour ago, SOE President John Smedley took to Reddit (once again bypassing the forums), to announce the restoration of the monthly 500SC stipend, AND some remarkable changes to All Access. This not only gives us back everything we asked for, but goes to the heart of solving the problems players had with these changes. We are fully cognisant of SOE’s issues with devalued StationCash, but the changes as announced last Friday were ham-handed at best. Today’s announcements make a lot more sense.

After the jump, John Smedley’s comments on Reddit

Hi everyone,

Thanks for the feedback. We listened.

Here are the basics of our revised plan. Please note – we have not had the time to do estimates of the work involved, and also we’re continuing to listen. so this isn’t baked just yet. Do not expect that this is all going to happen immediately. We plain don’t know yet. we’re doing that meeting tmw.

1) We’re lowering the price of All Access to $14.99

2) We’re going to make it so every subscriber to all our PC games an all access member. Basically there will be one SOE membership for our PC games. Please note there are some minor restrictions around our kids titles (simply put – if you’re a 12 year old who signed up for FR you won’t have access to the adult games so we’ll likely leave the lower priced kids offerings as separate subscriptions for under 12 for the same low prices).

3) We’re keeping the 500 SC included with the subscription instead of going to the “pick an item” system. We heard you. You didn’t like the change. The only change we are making is that we’re now going to make you claim it monthly. You can still hoard it though :) I realize this is a bit of a pain but honestly it’s the best compromise we could come up with that solves the problems I mentioned in the other thread.

4) we are going to be giving our [Gold? -ed note] members a 10% discount in our marketplaces.

5) European players – we have an idea on how to include you in this but we need to discuss with our partners.We have a pretty good idea on this though. give us a bit of time to suss this out.

6) Nothing is changing with Player Studio items – you’ll still be able to buy them with your 500SC.

7) Console titles – you’ll notice I only mentioned the PC titles. Our goal is to include the PS3 and PS4 games that we have, but I want to be up front and say that isn’t a done deal.

In a nutshell that’s where our head is at.

As always your feedback is welcomed. Please do us a big favor and carefully think about #3. Our goal is to give you more value in the subscription to make it more attractive and making it simpler in the process.

I really feel like we’re making a good decision going this route. It makes things simpler and gives more value to our players.

Thanks

Smed

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Comments (16)

  • Miragain

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    Well I’m rather surprised.

    Reply

  • Barx

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    Smart move. Keeping the 500 SC and just making you claim it monthly does what they wanted to do without all the rage. Not to mention that in F2P titles a lot of the profit (in terms of microtransaction sales) usually comes from a small percentage of the population, so I doubt what they make from SC will be much different this way than doing it via a monthly 2kSC or less free item (if anything, for those “whale” customers they’ll probably make more this way).

    It’s a shame they appear to be staying on with keeping non-recurring subs . Historically they’ve been in kind of a weird spot: if you have just 1 you’re non-recurring and didn’t get the monthly SC. but just having a credit card to be used, even if you never let stacked time drop to use the card, would count as recurring and grant it. Makes it a bit of a joke if you ask me, but I guess they at least get your credit card that way, for the impulse-buyers.

    Reply

    • din

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      I know the feeling,

      I also found it odd that I would pay upfront for 12 months, and not get the 500SC, but give them my credit card details, and the SC is mine.

      Reply

  • Anaogi

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    Smed may actually be learning how to work with the player base. It’s nice to see a positive development like this!

    Reply

  • Pipsissiwa

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    Personally stunned (and happy) that SOE actually paid attention, and even more so that they did it in a timely manner.

    However I’m not loving how some people who preferred the restrictive but apparently higher ‘value’ voucher are suddenly appearing and getting snarky AFTER they had the chance to comment.

    A little life lesson in taking 5 minutes to support an idea when a thread actually asking for feedback is created, just as others took 5 minutes to oppose it. You don’t vote, no rights to complain about the outcome – in politics and everywhere. It is true that those against something will be more vocal – all the more important that those in favour actually pipe up if it matters to them that much. I saw a whole two voices in the original 50+ page, 3 day thread that were at all in favour, and only two in game yesterday,one of whom changed their mind.

    I personally much prefer the flexibility of the 500SC that remains ‘hoardable’ if i don’t see anything I want and that I can spend on anything, without restrictions. I can understand that others may like the insta-high-value item, but it isn’t for me. I’m very happy with the new proposal.

    With one HUGE caveat – the ‘solution’ to us European players. I don’t give two hoots about all access and If giving us that involves shunting us all to PSS1 after all then I’ll be back on the front line fighting that nonsense all over again. However if they’ll let us have stuff on existing SOE accounts, all well and good – maybe even EQN can be back on my radar.

    Reply

  • Delurm

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    I didn’t go to the forums – I voted with the only thing that matters. I clicked cancel (and I have a 6 year reward it’s not like I’m a short term customer).

    I hardly log in – but the 500 sc that piles up keeps me going. The fact that I send my wife gifts(she plays way more than I do) or I buy things like extra char slots and or leveled up alts – and due to the overwhelming prices set on some of these items – this takes months of saving.

    The plan they offered – I could take my 15 dollars in sub money and get *real* SC from wallmart.

    I don’t get the argument about the 500 stipend and worry over EQN – frankly the 15 bucks a month I send them now – pays bills now. If they don’t need that money – then obviously they can wait for me to spend cash in EQN. If they need money now to stay in business – what difference does it make if I get imaginary cash to spend on a new game? And it’s imaginary – when you buy SC look at the fine print – it has no cash value that they guarantee, so they aren’t on the hook for assets on the books for those that have made this argument – the legal liability is zero because your SC isn’t an asset they have to report – legally a balance of 0 or 10000000 SC is still worth 0 real world dollars (if you had a screwup and they offer you compensation that’s customer service making good to a customer – not an obligation).

    I’m just not sure now if I’ll bother clicking re-sub.

    Like I said – I can just take my 15 bucks and get 2k SC from wallmart when I want to play – and that’s roughly once every 3-4 months.

    Reply

  • Mrrshaw

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    Pipsissiwa – As I mentioned on the forums over at Everquest2.com , i am wondering if the All Access means we get to keep our accounts or that we have to move….. because personally if they shove me over to PSS1, I will jump ship. But if EQN/EQNL comes to my current account, that isnt affiliated with PSS1… I will definately play it.

    Reply

    • Pipsissiwa

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      I feel exactly the same.

      /crosses fingers that SOE don’t do anything rash….

      Reply

  • Kruzzen

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    All I can say is, when does it start. :)

    Reply

  • Grebo

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    All I can say is… Welcome back Smed, we missed you from back in the day with EQ when you listened to the players. I am majorly impressed, not only did we not lose what has been working for years (the 500 SC) we also get all access. Smart move, I gave up on Vanguard due to the cost of all access, now I will more than likely try the other offerings, thus in the end buying more station cash to spend in those games.

    This is definitely a time to praise Smed and SOE for (not) making a change that would have driven players away from subs, if not game as whole. As I posted on the official forms, I’ve paid faithfully since launch, don’t feel I’ve asked for a whole lot (I STILL want the PROMISED tinkering daily quest from Fanfaire 2009). But the loss of the 500 SC was going to drive me out of game totally (trust me I’ve weathered a lot of changes in 9 years). So I’m glad that the players were taken seriously and the change was reversed. Thanks again Smed, and you think…maybe, just maybe the Smed of old from the EQ days could, well you know… maybe hang around for awhile?

    Reply

  • Pipsissiwa

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    LOL I seem to have been banned from the SOE forums. Guess I mentioned being European and PSS1 one time too many – still a touchy subject over there I guess.

    Gotta love how they won’t let you log out when you get banned so you cant see the forum, except I can just use another browser and I get the feed anyway. Heh, if SOE don’t want my support for once that’s their lookout.

    Reply

  • amuller

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    Just to be over cautious.. we still get double tokens right? Sorry if its obvious, but I dont see anything eitehr way in smed’s comments and that means more to me than the SC or the All access…

    Reply

    • Narsikus

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      Yeah, the double-tokens are still in effect. That was solidified earlier before all this 500sc monthly chaos.

      Reply

  • Foodcity

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    I honestly was looking forward to getting one 2K SC item per month…… I rarely get the small things anyways. Getting SC house items always felt like cheating to me for some reason. I just wanted to get that ONE exp pot that I need when I run out of at level 94.

    Reply

  • Eschia

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    I stopped being a gold sub 3 years ago because thats when I considered it no longer worth my money, but I am glad that which was left of it has been restored and the price lowered somewhat. Congrats all.

    Reply

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