Not everyone's a fan of Star Citizen’s ship rental system

star citizen rental equpiment credits REC UEC roberts space industries

Earlier this month Star Citizen’s director, Chris Roberts, outlined a ship rental system which has not gone down well with the community. Players are saying it turns Star Citizen into a freemium game and that the system favours people who have bought better ships with real cash.

Chris Roberts has responded to the criticisms but it’s not eased the situation.

“One of the design tenets of Star Citizen is that it needs to be a complete experience regardless of what you have purchased,” Roberts wrote at the start of the month. “Someone buying a starter package needs to have exactly as much potential as someone supporting development by pledging for a new ship or a purchasing a new weapon. I do not want to make a game where you feel compelled to spend anything but time to continue playing.”

In the persistent universe that the developers are working on, that’s fine: like Elite, you’ll earn money for collecting bounties, trading goods, and spend those credits on ships. However, in the Arena Commander module that players have access to at the moment there’s no persistent currency to spend on ships. Instead, the only way to buy Star Citizen’s more impressive vessels is to pony up real cash.

With some ships costing more than $100, that’s really not an option for a lot of players.

The Hornet F7-C will set you back $165.00.

REC’s are meant to be the solution. Players would earn these credits from playing PvP matches in Arena Commander. They can then use the credits to rent the usually paid-for equipment for a week at a reduced rate, 10% of its UEC cost (Star Citizen's real money currency).

“You’ll still be able to support the development of the game by pledging for ships and weapons, and these will carry across into the Persistent Universe but you will no longer have to contribute additional money to fly a different ship or use a new weapon,” Roberts said. “You’ll have a choice. Spend time playing the game, which will earn REC to be spent on ships and weapons for use in Arena Commander or pledge for these items, supporting the ongoing development and running costs of the game.”

The community’s not been entirely swayed by Roberts’ proposition. The Mittani’s found a lot of examples in the Star Citizen community of people opposing Roberts plan. One criticism on Reddit is that REC can only be earned in PvP matches and the amount of REC players receive is judged by how well they do in the combat.

The problem is there’s no proper matchmaking in Arena Commander, so a player with basic equipment can easily be paired up with someone who's spent hundreds of dollars on powerful ships and weapons, meaning the players who spend money are likely to earn more REC, which means they can get better ships, which repeats the problem.

If players could earn REC in PvE games then this wouldn’t be a problem.

star citizen rental equpiment credits REC UEC roberts space industries

However, Roberts replies in a forum post, “REC allows us to give an incentive for certain parts of the game to get tested. Right now testing different player ships against other player ships is more important for the ongoing balance of the game, which is why REC is focused on the PvP side of AC.” He does also say that in the future they may want to test PvE elements of the game and so will set up a REC system to reward that, too.

Roberts also responded to the matchmaking criticism, saying “We recognize that people don't want to be put into the current completely open bear pit that is ranked AC games, so we're also working on the ability to have brackets to match players of similar ships and / or skill in games and also allow people to opt out of the public leader boards.” This won’t come till after the first version of REC is up and running.

“The point of REC isn't to decide on the game economics or prices for weapons, or turn SC into some sort of the Korean MMO grind fest,” Roberts says. “its purely to allow a route for players to earn things by playing so they aren't forced to pledge for them but this is entirely optional.”

War Thunder
Sign in to Commentlogin to comment
Shriven avatarClutchy avatarBelimawr avatarPurgatorialFlame avatarStinkflipper Incarnate avatarMrAptronym avatar+14
MrJinxed Avatar
872
2 Years ago

This seems overly douchy and extremely greedy. I only threw like 25 or 45 or whatever dollars it was (I forgot, was quite some time ago), but I am beginning to regret it a tad, I must admit. It's dick moves like this that makes my confidence waver.

I really want the single player portion of it first and foremost, but I was looking forward to playing the game online without an extreme amount of microtransactions, but it looks like that's where we might be headed should the game ever come out. What a shame. I hope they change this. People already pay hundreds of dollars for random ships, and now they have to pay even more if they want to play in a specific game mode? And it's not even permanent, but a renting system.. And yet they have the balls to say it's the best thing for everyone?

5
sidspacewalker Avatar
64
2 Years ago

I don't think it can be called "microtransactions" lol.

1
MrJinxed Avatar
872
2 Years ago

You need to re-read my post. I wrote "it looks like that's where we might be headed" not "this game has microtransactions".

However, there's not really much difference already. It's part of an in-game shop or tied to their website which handles payments for in-game ships or rental time periods. The wording might not strike you as correct, but that's really what it's usually called. If you don't like the word, then make your own up I guess.

0
MrJinxed Avatar
872
2 Years ago

doublepost - please ignore.

1
Belimawr Avatar
1197
2 Years ago

it wasn't already freemium when you had to buy the best ships anyway?

3
MrAptronym Avatar
359
2 Years ago

Yeah, this system is time-limited, but I am not sure how it would be more advantage buying than the business model until now. The argument I have heard is that since you can earn the items (or equivalent) in game, being able to buy them outright isn't cheating. Which I think is a pretty weak argument.

.

They may have started out with genuine ambitions, but I feel like cloud imperium have gotten a bit caught up in all the marketing. Any time I hear about the game its another fundraising pitch or new merchandise. I've talked to a few people who are DEEPLY invested into the game and its really sad. It genuinely feels like talking to a gambling addict or a cultist. Its hard to imagine dropping five figures (USD) onto an unreleased game, regardless of how amazing you may expect it to be.

0
hahnchen Avatar
93
2 Years ago

Star Citizen is a hat trading marketplace disguised as a game. Unlike TF2, the hats came first.

0
KeefBaker Avatar
392
2 Years ago

To be fair though they've got hardly any money so I don't blame them.. $72million will hardly buy a mars bar these days so definitely, the poor sods need more cash.

3
Dohfugwimee Avatar
1
1 Year ago

I believe this game will be finished as promised as much as I believe trump will build and support a wall

1
medicatedslave Avatar
3
2 Years ago

It cost $140 million to develop Destiny, not including marketing costs. The scale of Star Citizen is far beyond that of Destiny's. $72 million or more is quite reasonable considering what they are trying to accomplish.

0
Stinkflipper Incarnate Avatar
269

“its purely to allow a route for players to earn things by playing so they aren't forced to pledge for them but this is entirely optional.”

This is the very definition of pay to win. They will always try this "it's optional"-speech, but pay to win is if a player can buy what another player has to work for.

2
Invertex Avatar
2
9 Months ago

"but pay to win is if a player can buy what another player has to work for"

Both players had to work for it, it's just that one had to do real work, contributing to society, to earn the money to pay for that item, instead of doing "work" in a video games to earn said item.

1
medicatedslave Avatar
3
2 Years ago

People in these comments seem very lost as to how Star Citizens payment system works.

once the full game releases YOU WILL NO LONGER BE ABLE TO BUY SHIPS. There are zero micro transactions to be had.

The full game will release at $60, but if you buy the basic arena commander package now you get the game, the ship, and all beta and alpha access for $45.

The #1 reason for the REC system is so that all the ships and weapons have a fair round of testing, this is an alpha after all.

This bears repeating because apparently people don't get it.

ONCE THE FULL GAMES IS RELEASED YOU CAN NOT BUY SHIPS, THERE ARE ZERO MICROTRANSACTIONS AND ALL DLC/FUTURE UPDATES WILL BE FREE.

2
Kinth! Avatar
194
2 Years ago

"I do not want to make a game where you feel compelled to spend anything but time to continue playing"

The two ideas are opposed and therefore contradict each other. He doesn't want to make a game where you are compelled to spend money yet hopes to fund further development by doing exactly that. They can claim to be pious all they want but if ships are too easy to get in the game then no one is going to pay money for them. Which means they make no money and eventually have to make the ships very difficult or slow to get to incentivize people to buy them

I lost most of my interest in Star Citizen the moment they started charging for individual ships. Unfortunately the fan base is so rabid that everyone backs up every decision them make no matter how shitty.

It's seems they spend more times developing new ships and trailers for those ships than they do the actual game.

1
VORTENIAN Avatar
1
11 Months ago

your always going to end up paying time ore money on a game, if you got a job pay money... if you don't... well i bet you will have more time you play and probably enjoy the game more and probably be better at it than someone who payed. and just think these people that have the money to pay are making the game better for you by backing it... meanwhile they probably have a job so they don't even get to play it as much... and even with the best gear if you don't play you cant win. furthermore the ones that get to play will buy the best stuff realize there is nothing more to work for and grow tired of the game very fast... leaving the game you you to enjoy without there presence..... however i don't like the renting process... but the insurance that's genius... i mean you cant expect to just have a ship no matter what even if it gets destroyed... but if you pay insurance you get to keep it that's a great idea so long as cost is fair. and maybe it could work like real insurance where your rates go up if you crash to much making pvp an expensive pastime. or your co pay could just get real expensive however every player should get enouph monthly free income to keep ones ships insurance current at all times... no matter what ship so long as its not a giant ship like a battle cruiser. that insurance should be costly.

1
HawkWind Avatar
1
10 Months ago

Another shortsighted article.

1: Star Citizen is in Alpha, or not finished so "buying a ship" is purely to support development.

2: You can purchase Squadron42 (single player game) and Star Citizen (an MMO with no monthly subs) for $60 (it was $45 when I got them with a starter pack) that is considerably cheaper than most games.

3: if you buy the cheepest ship (aurora) you get 60% bonus on REC earning in game to balance the play

4: ships rented with REC are useable in the persistent universe, so no pay to win here either.

Stop producing rubbish like this as if the game is finished and you are reviewing in game purchases. This is one of the most ambitious games ever. Period. And that is the reason it has become the largest crowd funding project. People buy into the vision. However if you can bear to be patient, simply wait till the game comes out. And if you want to test it out, try on of the many free flight periods which will cost you nothing.

1
Shriven Avatar
3420
2 Years ago

Well...i consider the £80 i paid in the initial kickstarter phase as wasted now...

0
Stinkflipper Incarnate Avatar
269

I only took the basic game tier, but yeah. I'm kind of ashamed of having supported this.

Whatever. I just want the single player anyway. That's all I ever wanted, a follow up to Wing Commander.

1
Julian Benson Avatar
180
2 Years ago

Likewise. Unfortunately it looks like Squadron 42 is the last piece of the puzzle :(

1
MrAptronym Avatar
359
2 Years ago

I hear there is a thriving aftermarket for ships. If you pledged early you could possibly make it back... then again maybe not if people are getting fed up.

0
Clutchy Avatar
163
2 Years ago

So, RSI has collected millions of dollars for development, will sell the game when it is ready AND hit users with micro-transactions that can be more than $100 each?! Holy crappy.

Fleecing your base = no base for long.

0
PurgatorialFlame Avatar
73
2 Years ago

Some people will cry and overreact to anything... This game takes skill and practice, no amount of $$$ is going to guarantee a win.

This system is great because we can test stuff out in the training sim without risking losing/wasting our UEC or ships in the P.U.

They could have locked everything behind a paywall, but no... they provided a chance for even the most budgeted of the player work towards a ship they want to try, even if that only lasts a week. And this is how some people react???

The P.U will let players earn ships without buying... so people are going to complain then as well? (Of course they will, even though this has been the plan since day one!)

TLDR. People will always find something to get upset over, even when that something is beneficial to everyone.

-2
free*******vall Avatar
4
2 Years ago

lol i don't know why you tried, this site is dominated by haters. i mean look at half of their names and you should already have discredited them. and half of them aren't even using the main terms in their arguments correctly haha. Then they wanna talk about "greedy" and "douches". hell the games gonna be F2P. and its got way better graphics and gameplay than wow, but you know its ok guys because they probably pay $20 a month and 40 per expansion thats basically a patch in disguise. I also feel the need to explain this because so few people acually do the research: YYOU DONT HAVE TO BUY ANYTHING TO GET IT. ITS IN PRE ALPHA. THE ONLY REASON THEY'RE "SELLING" THEM IS TO GIVE THE BACKERS SOMETHING EARLY FOR SUPPORTING THE CAUSE. ITS NOT FREMIUM... look it up please, then you will realize how stupid you look now. its NOT pay to win. That would imply that you would have to buy the best stuff to win, that it wouldn't be available in game without real world money, kinda like age of conan.

-3
Stinkflipper Incarnate Avatar
269

No, you've been fooled by the line they all use to defend pay to win. It isn't about making something exclusive to those who pay, it's about selling gameplay items that matter ingame. The moment you do that, you've made a game where players can pay to win.

.

Picture two players who are able to spend an EQUAL amount of time in game. One of those players use real money to buy a fancy ship that's superior to the other player's ship - because he is not able to compensate by spending time to earn it ingame. How is that not paying to win?

1
Cyborg_delta1 Avatar
1
2 Years ago

The one thing I think allot of people are forgetting is that this is an alpha things can be changed and the good thing about Chris and cloud imperium is that if majority of the community is not happy they will take another look at it, if this was an EA game and thank fuck its not it would be promise after promise, fancy pictures and end up nothing like they promised and you would not get to see any thing or play anything until it was released. It then would be released with bugs coming out the wazoo and DLC will be out on day one, but you wont be able to play because there servers will be down for the first 3 months. They have always said that the ships you get now are supporting the game development and as a thank you for your contribution you get to keep them and if they go down the route of renting ships I don't care just because you went out and got a bigger ship don't mean your going to win. The good thing about Star Citizen is that its not just stats and number crunching and flying in circles smashing buttons i.e. EVE or STO there is some skill needed I mean look at a few weeks ago there was a guy in an aurora kicking every ones ass and that was mostly down to his flying skills.

At the end of the day haters will be haters and to add to your post Stinkflipper EVE is the biggest pay to win game I have ever seen I mean rather than starting the game from scratch I can go on the net buy an account with a relay good ship and skills and kick ass or I have to spend hundreds of dollars if not thousands just to get any where in monthly fees, like when I started to play in order to start this new mission I needed a new ship but to get that new ship I needed to learn a new skill but to learn that skill I needed another skill that took 1h then the main skill took some thing like 3h then I needed to get weapons and guess what that needed a new skill but this one was going to take a month so at that point I was like WTF!!!!! because that was a whole month sub gone just to do that.

Also I like to relate PCGN to a news paper the SECOND! they see a negative comment from the community they pounce on it i.e. Julian Benson was going on about how a hornit will set you back $165 this is a pledge to help the game you don't have to get that ship to win like I said before a guy in an a aurora was kicking the ass of people with a hornit so Julian before you talk about one part of the subject at least do more research into it and not only tell one part of the story.

1
free*******vall Avatar
4
2 Years ago

the better question is, how is the second player winning? especially because there's nothing to do with winning, its and endless game, meaning you cant win. also how is it any different from a P2P? joining after launch in any game must be pay 2 win by your logic, cuz guy one spent 100$ playing the game at 20 a month hes got better stuff than the you, who just joined. besides, every mmo has many stores that sell ingame items, but you know there not pay 2 win b/c its by a 3rd party right? you really need to rethink your definition of pay 2 win. right now, you look dumb. not only that but by your definition every things pay to win. if thats your concensus then you need to realise, no matter what nothing will be equal footing. not in real life not in games, and just because you can buy stuff with real money does not make it pay 2 win. In SC you can earn everything ingame.

EDIT: id also like to add the fact that your ship is bigger doesn't mean your going to win, this is a skill based game not a pocket/gear based game.

i kinda wish whoever made p2w games never did because so many people use the term incorrectly today.

1
orfwej Avatar
1
orfwej replied to free*******vall
2 Years ago

One point missed here is the fact that Roberts has already announced a credits for dollars trade, post development stage. Even if you could excuse the current system floor being an early development option, there is no excuse for that.

The community needs to lash out over this. We all want the awesome space game to come out, and its entirely doable without a pay to win system.

Pay to win sucks, but if a large enough portion of the community demands it be taken out of the game lest they withdraw support, the debs will have no choice but to listen.

1