EA is having a helluva day addressing their lootbox shit. Some guy did maths and determined normal non-lootbox funded gameplay would require 40 hours of playtime to unlock any of the heroes.
Which begs the question (with obvious answer): Why the fuck are Heroes/Villains gated behind a paywall for a $60 game?
EA: Fucking piles of big cash $$$ son.
The intent is to provide players with a sense of pride and accomplishment for unlocking different heroes.
As for cost, we selected initial values based upon data from the Open Beta and other adjustments made to milestone rewards before launch. Among other things, we're looking at average per-player credit earn rates on a daily basis, and we'll be making constant adjustments to ensure that players have challenges that are compelling, rewarding, and of course attainable via gameplay.
The bolded shit is just gross. I spend whole weeks of my life making games because I want people to have fun with the shit we've made. Nowhere at any point did I decide, fuck yeah I want to nickle and dime kids (or their parents money away) with microtransactions.
At some point today, the Sledgehammer Games community manager got frustrated with the lootbox drama and tweeted this, before deleting it:
He has since deleted it and is now playing the victim card on his feed. As a developer, this shit is gross. I've had a late coffee with my former supervisor, who worked at DICE, and this whole release is just a shitshow. If you don't like the public response to the monetization choices you've made, either get rid of them or accept the hate and cancelled pre-orders.
They've been taking a beating this whole weekend, since the game released on EA Access, the corporate slave owners trotted out the design director to address the complaints.
Apologies for not being more active these past weeks leading up to launch - as you know things get really hectic and you tend to spend whatever spare freetime you have recovering. I really regret not being here on the subreddit at the start of the early access. Hopefully some of these replies will bring some clarity and hope.
Performance during games will affect the amount of credits you get at the end of a match.
Matchmaking will take into account not only player skill, but also total gametime and rarity of star cards. This means that you will be matchmade with players with an average performance similar to you and (to the largest extent possible) not against players who are much better than you, whether by having higher rarity cards or by showing higher skill.
Heroes that are locked at launch will only be unlocked with credits, not crystals. The heroes, similar to the locked weapons for Troopers, are sidegrades instead of upgrades (Darth Vader should be on similar power level as Darth Maul, etc). The goal is to keep you playing for a long time and have something cool to look forward to as you earn credits.
Speaking of earning credits, we're constantly evaluating and tweaking the earn rates versus the cost of crates and heroes. The current rates were based on open beta data, but you should expect us to constantly evolve these numbers as we hit launch and onwards. There will also be more milestones that award credits and crafting parts available, as well as star cards only unlockable through those milestones. If all you want to do is play and grind towards your next unlock that will be fully possible and we'll continue to tweak the numbers until the requirements feel fun and achievable.
Working on a game with a live economy and without a premium content lineup is a new challenge for us at DICE. We had one progression system in the closed alpha and heard your feedback back then. We made another iteration for the open beta and heard your feedback then too. For launch, we're having another iteration and there will definitely be more iterations as we evolve this game post launch.
Your continous feedback as you play the game is absolutely invaluable and I encourage you to keep sending it our way. There is really no reason to "rebel" against us - we want this game to be as great and enjoyable as it can be - we're reading all your feedback and working as fast as we can to adjust the game to your liking.
No matter what he says or promises to do, this is all still massive piles of bullshit. Monetization came first, then gameplay, and story. That was EA's directive with churning out a new Battlefront game.
And for a slight cherry on top, PC Gamer's review of Need For Speed Payback: Pouring loot boxes on a tire fire
Need for Speed: Payback is the first game to be ruined by loot boxes. Obviously it’s not the first game to have loot boxes—we’ve been actively discussing them and their role in games for the last few months, thanks to Forza Motorsport 7 and Middle-earth: Shadow of War and “Is this gambling?” and so on.
But I’m talking ruined. In Need for Speed: Payback, we have a totally decent arcade racer undermined at every turn by rampant and predatory monetization. It should be a cautionary tale for the rest of the industry.
Normal racing games work like this: You race cars, you earn money, you use that money to either buy better cars or upgrade your current vehicle with new parts—a more powerful engine, grippier tires, a lighter-weight frame, and so on. This is how Need for Speed has also worked for years now.
Not Payback! Payback ditches all of the under-the-hood tweaking entirely, replacing it instead with a totally incomprehensible “Speed Card” system. Each car has six Speed Card slots, which roughly equate to actual car parts—Block, ECU, Turbo, Exhaust, Gearbox, and Head.
Each race you’re rewarded with a random Speed Card to put in one of these slots. Say you do a street race in Silver Rock a.k.a. faux-Vegas. After winning, you’ll get a new Speed Card for your car, maybe bumping its “Block” rating from a completely arbitrary 3 to a still-arbitrary-except-it’s-slightly-higher 4.
This is all then tallied up in ways that are again completely impenetrable to the player, and your car receives an overall rating. Lower-end cars have a rating of about 120. Fully-upgraded cars mostly top out at 300, with a handful of cars going up to 399.
Oh, and did I mention Speed Cards can’t be shared between cars? Because they can’t. Even Speed Cards you aren’t using, ones that are just sitting in your inventory because you have better options available, are completely useless. You can sell them or trade them in for Tokens, but if you buy a new car it starts from scratch and you need to repeat any of the previous options to build up an entirely new set of Speed Cards.
You unlock the next tier and instead of it starting at 180 like you’d expect, every race immediately “Recommends” a car of at least Level 210. Hope you have money or tokens lying around, otherwise you’re running old races ad nauseum and hoping something good drops or...buying loot boxes. And heaven forbid you bought a new car (or decided to use your newly-repaired derelict) instead of continuing to use that crappy Honda you got at the start of the game. If that’s the case, you’re not starting at 155—you’re potentially starting as low as 120. Again, all of your cards are locked to the car you earned them in. Not even the division! You can’t just unequip the cards from your last Drag car and move them to your new one. Nope! Nothing!
It’s garbage. It’s the worst system I’ve ever seen in a singleplayer racing game, or any full-price singleplayer game.
I wish more reviewers were this honest about lootbox-centric games.