Vermintide is looking more and more like a pay-to-play game

It just struck me today: I’m not sure if I want to keep advising friends to buy vermintide 2.
I love the game, but I have strong feelings towards P2P games. I can understand the model in F2P games, but I can’t really justify it here.

And I began to wonder what a new entry would see:
A game where 1/4th of the careers will be locked. The highest difficulty is locked.
Not to mention the DLC maps and the payed cosmetics, which, while not too many - for now - do appear first in the shop.
I’m wandering what they might think, and if this is good for the life of the game.

EDIT: It’s a bit different for us veterans, we’ve been here a long time and saw the changes gradually. We also don’t mind playing the same content over and over because we already know how great the gameplay is and love it. But to an outsider this often feels like too short a game - the maps being not that many - and considering that virtually every feature has a paywall now I fear the base game might look like a bait for the P2P features.

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I think the monetization of the DLCs like new classes and cosmetic items is ok. At least if it would then also be used for the free release of new maps as communicated by FatShark… well, the only 3 maps that were released for free then were the Drachenfels maps, that was almost 1 year ago. I have no idea what Chaos Wastes will contain (because once again very little - ok… except that there will be new weapons, including a 3-barreled pistol - is communicated by FS). The question is then whether there will also be new maps AND whether the promise is kept and these will be released independently of the next paid expansion.

As for Cataclysmus, I fully agree (and have since WoM release) that a difficulty level should never be DLC content.

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Eh, while it is unfortunate the truth is that Fatshark needs that $ to produce anything, so new careers,systems and maps need to be paywalled or the coffers will dry up faster than Saltz’s patience.

Such is how things are.

What i myself consider more unfortunate is when paywalled weapons or careers are allowed to be silly powerful because they are paywalled, even when its bad for the rest of the game.

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I mean I’ve got a bit of a skewed prospective given I’ve got over 1200 hours in VT2, so I have gotten absolutely absurd value for money from the base game and DLCs.
Likewise the other game I regularly play is World of Warships with it’s expertly Whale Harpooning marketing model.

It’s less than a month from the 3rd year anniversary of release of VT2
Assuming you don’t get anything in the pretty regular Steam Sales.

8/3/2018 Vermintide 2 £23.79

28/5/2018 Shadows Over Bögenhafen 2 Maps + 84 cosmetics" £6.99
10//12/18 Back to Ubersreik 3 Maps + 5 Weapons" £6.99
13/8/2019 Winds of Magic 1 Map + 5 Weapons + Weaves + Catacylsm" £15.49
23/6/2020 Grail Knight + 2 Weapons" £2.99 + extra for cosmetics
19/11/2020 Outcast Engineer +2 Weapons" £2.99 + extra for cosmetics

= £35.45 (without sale) for 3 years worth of non-cosmetic DLC
For 6 maps, 14 weapons, 2 careers
Of which SoB could be skipped if you really just wanted the weapons.

Honestly that’s pretty tame by current standards of monetisation. Compared to many big publishers they almost deserve a medal for not selling lootboxes with a chance of dropping red items.

As for having to pay extra for a difficulty? As controversial as many aspects of WoM is, by the time you’re probably ready for Cataclysm I think you’d have gotten your money’s worth out of the base game.

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I’m not complaing about the existence of payed content, to clarify, just the way it’s implemented. VT1 had both DLC and payed cosmetics. But they where not as much “in your face” as they are now, and as such they weren’t badly received.

My biggest complaint is about paywalling WoM content (also because I payed for it and can’t even enjoy it - thinking of weaves) and careers.
My reaction would probably be somewhat different if we had something to play alongside those careers - like, say, maps where you do character based stuff, for example finding bardin’s daughter for the OE.
But locking careers is a bad design regardless of price: it makes sense to old players because we are starving for content, but a new player will either be uninterested in them - as there’s more careers than maps in the base game (even without considering the grind to unlock them) or they’ll want to be able to try them - and why shouldn’t they?

EDIT: I own every bit of DLC in the game (minus the hats) so I’m not talking for myself, but it’s really getting hard for me to suggest this. I’m aware there’s worse games monetization wise, I don’t advise them either.

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If they had implemented some sort of battle pass system where you have to pay every X months and get exclusive rewards to work towards in that pass’ time frame like portrait frames etc., would that be better? With a steady income from something like that free updates would probably be more likely.

I can’t tell if the premium DLC cosmetics model worked or not, but the “July 2020” second delivery of them still not being here does not instill much confidence that it did.

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If you are a brand new player then legend and base game maps are going to last for a good while alone. This is also ignoring the fact that you might get into lobbies where host has all the dlc:s or friends who own those packs in which case you can practically play every single map in the game without paying a penny.

For good 100 hours I actually disagree that you particularly need anything from the dlc:s to enjoy the game. Sure weapons, careers and maps are there but they are more of an extension if you want more rather than a necessity in my opinion.

So how I see this “pay-to-play”, the argument does not really sound something I can support in anyway apart from maybe cata difficulty being paywalled behind one of the more expensive dlc:s.

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The biggest issue for me is locking Cataclysm behind a paywall. Unironically think it’s essential to the game.

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Bad as it might be, what options are there? Production requires resources, resources in turn requires funds. Funds are earned by selling what they produce.

Money makes the world go 'round, and without a large excess of income they cant even think about bein generous, i cant honestly fault them.

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This ^

Locking a difficulty behind a paywall doesn’t sit right with me, especially so considering it influences balance and divides the playerbase.

I imagine notching down the difficulty to play with someone who doesn’t own WOM feels pretty meh too.

I have no problem with everything else, assuming no paid content offers a big advantage or anti-fun mechanics.

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He… hasn’t said anything about P2W. Nobody in this thread has.

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It is about the monetization of content, not about P2W…

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Eh honestly it’s not P2P at all really, I mean hell you don’t even need to own the map packs to be able to play on the DLC maps, Drachenfels was also completely free of charge and the base game careers offer plenty of variety already. As for weaponry well it’s not exactly a new thing for weapon packs to be a DLC option.

Only thing I’d say is remotely P2P about the game is Cataclysm being behind a paywall but by the time a player gets to that point they’re probably already 200+ hours in and the majority of the playerbase floats around veteran-champion anyway.

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Pretty much hit the nail on the head.

Its easy to complain about a business model, but ultimately can you suggest a more profitable one that changes the game the way you want?

Perhaps the experience is not as good as it could be, but would it be better if Fatshark weren’t making money and therefore couldn’t justify working on v2?

Right now I think the monetisation is quite reasonable. You can go far with the 15 original careers and can pick and choose the others you want to play for a pretty cheap price. Cata being locked is what it is. But cata is one of the main draws of buying wom given the failure of weaves and emnity still aimed at beastmen. By the time you can handle cata, you have definitely got your money worth and buying wom is reasonable IMO.

While I’d agree with most of the comments here that pay to play is definitely not an accurate description of V2, I also completely get where OP is coming from.

As the pile of paid content expands, V2 looks like more and more of a financial commitment to “get into”, and it also makes me hesitate to recommend it honestly. I’d probably justify it all as “unnecessary extras” if it weren’t for the elephant in the room, WoM and specifically Cataclysm.

The sort of people I’d wanna recommend V2 to are absolutely the sort of people who, if invested at all, would wanna shoot for Cata. It’s not a major issue for me, but it’s definitely uncomfortable and I don’t really know what could be done about it (and for that matter whether anything even should be done about it)

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I don’t know. Doesn’t seem problematic to me. There are numerous maps and careers to play just with the base game and especially the maps (and Beastmen) can also be played without having the specific DLC.

As for new careers I would have to try to think a bit. I think from the few games I played in my life time none or very few had new careers at a later point which have NOT been a DLC. That is industry standard (not discussing if good or bad).

The least problematic in my eyes is actually Cataclysm. Because in contrast to maps, enemies and careers it is something which you can only “access” after already having spent a few dozen/hundreds hours with the game. At that point you could consider it as a fair price for having already spent so much time with the game for cheap (because let’s be realistic, many players bought the game at 75 % discount).

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This is what I mean.

There’s only another game in my list with that amount of “advertising” for lack of a better word, and it’s Gwent. The fact that the second is a free to play game makes me worry by the comparison.
I simply don’t believe the other developers to be saints or fools, so something else can certainly be done. Besides, its prequel didn’t have the same amount of P2P stuff ( by the same standards many of you used, tecnically absolutely nothing was locked, not even the DLC weapons) so I don’t think it’s an insane argument to make.
Mine is not a huge steam list, but it’s 50+ games, so make of that what you will.

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I really miss getting Emperors chests in Okri’s Challenge book. It’s fine to put in shillings and have items available for purchase. But it didn’t mean chests had to be taken out of challenges. It’s really hurt my earn rate for red items. My best friend only wants to play legend, and we only win about 20% of the time with Xbox randos.

It really hurts the earn rate of new players not to have that option. A friend of ours who only plays occasionally has a hard time outfitting his characters to play with us on legend.

Then again reds are truly not needed for anything, even breakpoint wise there are very few where you truly need to min max that last 1-2 % of power to hit them. So progression wise you can do all of the content the game offers even with white 300 pw items.

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On PS4 the higher enemy hit points do require reds! It sucks to be a new player that not only needs to learn legend difficulty, but have a higher head shot% and better dodging/blocking than a veteran player simply because reds give a stupid large boost to damage and survivability!

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