There has been some discussion recently over systems like DAC and PLEX being "Pay 2 Win" (p2w). There are obvious negative connotations of a game being p2w as the players with the larger wallets will always "win" against those that do not. This is especially demoralizing when an opponent feels they were beaten not by skilled opponents but bludgeoned into submission by their wallets.
So it got me thinking: What does p2w actually mean? My own definition has always been:
A player can gain an advantage though paying that cannot be achieved just by playing the game without paying.
To me there is a clear distinction between "paying to win" and "paying to progress faster".
But was I wrong? Has the definition of p2w changed while I wasn't looking? It appears for some it means just one thing:
A player can gain an advantage though paying.
So paying to progress faster in a game *IS* paying to win even if anyone, given enough time, can gain that same advantage, or gain it through other means.
Like most things in life, it's not quite that simple. There is definitely a grey area between these two definitions. For example, how is it p2w to buy boosters to gain skills faster but buying in game currency is not p2w? This bothered me. More digging was required.
After doing some research, using either of these definitions is only half of the story. It completely ignores what it means to "win". The way to "win" in a game depends very much on the game itself. In a sandbox game, like Dual Universe, this becomes very difficult to nail down. When has a player won? Most would cry out "When my enemies are slain!". Sure, it is conceivable that players could spend money to buy bigger and better fleets with better weapons but the same fleets and weapons can be gained through savvy diplomacy. DU is an MMO after all. But, again, PvP is only a part of many equal parts of DU: mining, building, governments, economy, etc.
My conclusion is that there are as many different definitions of p2w as there are opinions on the matter. But that is just my opinion. Take a look around and decide for yourself. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Let's not worry overly much about differing opinions but instead build a community everyone can be proud of.
Further articles and discussions asking the same thing, all with varying opinions:
games reddit: https://www.reddit.c...nics_expanding/
truegaming reddit: https://www.reddit.c...in_mean_to_you/