VIP: Status or Scam?
- By buildersaurus_rex
- On 07/01/2016
- Comments (0)
You can now pay to become a VIP. But is this VIP thing a desirable status or an outright scam? At the very least their presentation of the VIP program was unclear in the "need to know" details and could be misleading to some people.
If you haven't purchased VIP status but you are considering it, plenty of people are upset with how the VIP exclusive benefits are earned and I would suggest not purchasing VIP unless Ludia re-evaluates and re-structures the entire VIP benefits program. In my opinion, in its current state, it's not only a scam, it's a slap in the face to every single one of the 1,000,000+ people that have liked their facebook page. It's an act of greed and it makes me wonder if Ludia has any respect or appreciation for those who play their games. Jurassic World the game's Facebook page is littered with complaints about the VIP program. Why? In a nutshell, what you get with your purchase is a single legendary creature (and it's not the VIP exclusive one) and that's about it. It does give you the ability to purchase content available only to VIP members, but you have to earn the VIP currency in order to make these purchases. That fact isn't exactly hidden from you prior to a VIP purchase, but they don't tell you upfront like they should. What the do tell you is spread out over several pages...
Images appear in same order as in the game
First they say new subscriptions and renewals get a free legendary, then proceed to say VIP members have privileged access to all new creatures. The preview is dino silhouettes with a question mark. This could be interpreted as "which one of these legendaries will be in your free legendary pack"...as if this is the VIP privilege. Then it proceeds to mention valuable VIP points that you can spend on exclusive buildings and decorations. Absolutely no mention or even a hint to the fact that those VIP points are also needed for the purchase of VIP exclusive creatures. I can see how people are upset when they buy a 3 month VIP membership and find that they didn't get an exclusive creature, or at least have an exclusive creature unlocked in the market available for purchase using DNA (which is what I thought would be the case). The VIP membership itself isn't cheap and there is no clear indication prior to its purchase that the VIP creature is an entirely seperate purchase (with VIP currency). This is shown on an entirely different tab that blends into the background. Personally I didn't see the 2nd tab until about 30 minutes after I updated the game.
Ludia definately could have more clear in their presentation of the VIP package, but where Ludia REALLY screwed up and pissed people off is that the only way to "earn" any measureable amount of VIP currency is to purchase premium card packs i.e. Aquatic or legendary cark packs, or you can grind for it. At $50 US each, the aquatic & legendary each "earn" you 2500 VIP coins. As you can see above, the VIP exclusive Pterodactylus has a price tag of 30000 VIP coins and is available for only 7 days. You can win the needed VIP coins, but the amount you win is almost immeasurable. If you win the csrd pack, it yeilds 10 VIP coins for each mystery pack you open, 50 for a common, 100 for a rare, 250 for a super rare and 500 for a legendary. These values are multiplied by 5 if you purchase the card pack. MAYBE you'll get a lucky spin on the prize wheel and land a super rare card pack and you'll get 250 VIP coins from that. But we all know what the prize wheel lands on and it almost always gives gives food, coins (both of which yeild 0 VIP coins) or possibly a mystery or common pack. Winning a rare card pack is... well... rare. The point here is that you are forced to either grind for 30000 VIP coins at a rate averaging 50 or less per win and thats if the prize wheel lands on a card pack every time, which it won't. The other option is to buy 12 aquatic or legendary packs at $50 US each and get 30,000 VIP coins that way. That's only $600 US of your hard earned money.
What Ludia has done is offered a 3 month VIP package that once purchased, all but forces you to make additional purchases if you want to benefit from the VIP membership in any meaningful way. The other option is to grind through hours and hours of battles slowly collecting VIP coins. Who care's if you get battle events that are VIP invite only when you're forced into so many of them you don't care to do anymore of them, or after your VIP purchase you find that you might have to fork out literally hundreds more in real life cash if you want the VIP creature.
I'm glad I didn't buy this VIP status. Truth be told, I have 2 accounts for the game. I have a legitimate account that's not hacked, and my stats collecting account that is hacked, used primarily to collect stats for the website. I've always been a believer in playing games as the developers intended you to play them. No hacks, glitches, cheats etc. But I find myself using my hacked account more and more just to play the game. Ludia has made so much of the games content so far out reach to the casual player and their in-app rip off's are EXACTLY why so many people have hacked the game, Ludia is out of control with in-app purchases.
Oh.... Yeah.... By the way.... The 30000 VIP coins needed to for the VIP creatures purchase.... If you want to fully evolve it you now need 240,000 VIP coins so you can purchase 8 of them. Seriously Ludia?!?
Watch for a future post regarding moble game in-app purchases... Ludia and other developers price structuring reasoning and exactly why in-app purchases in so many "freemium" games are soooo expensive (yes, there is a reason for it and it's not just about profit)