So do you want the good news first or the bad news? The good news is Black Gold won’t have any subscriptions or cash-shop. I know that sounds amazing right? No worries of pay to win or cosmetic items eating away at your Ramen Noodle dinner funds. So what’s the bad news? You have to pay to save your loot progress. Uhm what now?

Yes, a recent blog post has revealed Snail Game’s “brilliant” time-based monetization model for Black Gold. The model forgoes the traditional monetization paths for one where players can choose to purchase whatever items they looted during a specific timeframe. For some reason “time-based monetization” just makes me think of vacation timeshares and international phone calls. Somehow they always end up feeling like a rip off.

Lucky for us, Snail Games lets us choose when we want to pay for our earned loot. How generous! So how exactly does it all work? Snail Games was kind enough to provide an example of how the system will function:

Players will be able to select a timeframe: every 1 / 2 / 4 / 6 Hour(s) for automatically saving their progress. Players can also end the auto-save early to save manually whenever they feel the need to loot the items gained so far. Upon creation, save files will last for 24 hours before they disappear.
By selecting the one hour auto-save, progress will be recorded every hour:
SaveFile1 from 14:10~15:10, the player acquires a rare gun and a couple basic materials.
SaveFile2 from 15:10~15:40,the player loots a rare material and decides to save before reaching the hour mark.
The player will be able to loot the basic material immediately, but the rare gun and material will only be looted if the player decides to purchase SaveFile1 and SaveFile2.

Boy nothing makes me to play an MMO more than having to deal with time sensitive save files for my loot. The save files can be purchased using in-game credits, but Snail Games has also included a “lucky draw” system which has a chance to lower the cost or even make it free. Never did I think there would come a day when I had to get lucky in order to use my earned loot for free.

Obviously this raises huge concerns regarding end game progression. Players will only be asked to pay for rare materials and high level equipment, but this means that only those who pay for their endgame gear are going to get to actually progress once they reach level cap. Plus we don’t know what is considered “rare”. Is a level 10 rare item going to locked behind a paywall just the same as max level rare? Who really knows.

In the end, I think it’s safe to say the payment model won’t be recieved too kindly by fans. It would be wise of Snail Games to reconsider the model prior to the game’s official release. You can read the full monetization model details by visiting the official Black Gold website.

40 Readers Commented

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  1. Octanen on August 20, 2013

    Another game bites the dust before its even launched.
    “We have revolutionized the F2P model” not really you just messed it up even more than it was allready.

    Stick to the model everyone knows, P2P or F2P with a choice to either buy expansions or cosmetic items. Works out just fine for all other F2P games… why on earth go on and create something as useless as this.

    This is neither F2P or P2P nor P2W or even B2P… this is plain and simple “Bend over and take it from behind” its almost like all recent studios that create titles like this or kickstarters and what not, think that every gamer out there has been dropped on the floor as a child and has a IQ of a wet paper towel. This is just pure insanity, nothing else.

  2. ROFL on August 20, 2013

    LOL finally I’ve found a model that is worse than pay 2 win… devs always surprise me with their creativity xD

  3. Alien on August 19, 2013

    So basically you spend your time grinding like a slave for some decent loot and all you get is nothing but a god*m sh1t cuz your stuff has been locked and you’re obligated to pay in order to ragequit, WTF! not cool man…nooot cool.

  4. DracMonster on August 19, 2013

    All the people screaming that the game is going to fail are missing something important: This is a Chinese MMO that just happens to also be getting a western release.

    It’s not going to “fail,” because it’s being developed for a market that has been trained to cheerfully bend over to be raped by monetization schemes. It’ll probably do quite well… in its home market.

    But yeah, US servers are going to be ghost towns, methinks.

  5. anip on August 18, 2013

    watches as many players gets D/C than mass rage rising.

  6. ThcMonkee on August 18, 2013

    Well, once you strip away the bs, this is a freemium game. There is a new attention worthy MMO coming out every year, limiting your target audience like this at a moment where game companies struggle to keep players interest for more then a month- is simply a financial suicide.

  7. JUSTICE on August 18, 2013


    • boredguy on August 20, 2013

      … please tell me English isn’t your first language

  8. Clownbot on August 18, 2013

    “Wellcome to my new F2P mod Pay to turn your computer on.” Omg this Industry gets worst every day. Do they realy think this gonna work??? God damn they must be very very very stupid. My retarded 3 leged dog can see that this aint gonna work is my dog smarter then the CEO of Snail Game???

  9. Inotak on August 18, 2013

    Well, isn’t Snail Games a snail wallowing in salt? You guys are so f***ed if you think this is gonna fly. When I saw the trailer and the gameplay for this I thought, “Damn, wish I had a better GPU to play this. This looks badass. And it’s free!?” Now that I see this I’m thinking, “Well, aren’t you a piece of excrement wrapped in a brilliant looking wrapper?” Way to go Snail Games. You turned what could be a great MMO into a facade.

    • Bic Boi on August 21, 2013

      Quite right. A piece of dogshit covered with sprinkles is still dogshit.

  10. Matt on August 17, 2013

    I’m reminded of the time when Microsoft announced the Xbox One’s genius “theft protection” business model. That went well.

  11. Cryght on August 17, 2013

    Pay To Breathe???? Its basically PAy to level, pay to win, pay to even play the game…

    i loved the trailer, etc had soo much promise… then snail game destroys the hopes….

  12. Rob Tien on August 17, 2013

    Don’t support this model. Its got pay to win written all over it. If we don’t even play the game in beta, this game won’t see the light of day. Besides, how original can a fantasy mmo get?
    We as gamers have a lot of power. Look how we forced Final Fantasy IVX to have to make a better game.

  13. Gomez on August 17, 2013

    So, I am getting a weapon and contunue playing. I get another one better. I save and pay. Than i find another one better.The same I save and pay. Than i say, wtf, i will play 10h and save then but I got connection problem just before the 10h and got disconnected. I lost all the things I had without a save. To resume, every time I get to a personal checkpoint, I need to pay otherwise, every time i start to play i will start from zero.

    LOL This is a joke of a P2W.

  14. ugurano on August 17, 2013

    pay to win crap

  15. ExHuman on August 17, 2013

    “..sure, why to spend time and resources on making cosmetic items? Just make those jerks pay for their own loot!”
    – Snail Games ®

  16. qwe on August 17, 2013


  17. Kuettbullen on August 17, 2013

    Are you f*cking serious?! How can anyone think of such a stupid f*cking payment model?! It’s one of the WORST things they could’ve done. If they actually go through with this Snail Games will not last a fortnight…

  18. Tauroman on August 17, 2013

    Worst Payment system for a Game ever. How can you (SNAIL GAMES) be so stupid and try this in NA ? or EUROPE.
    We aint China. This aint gonna work in ouer markets sorry Snail Games i know its just a try and it will work in China but not for NA or EUROPE. Ive you dont change this system before the game releases your game will be dead soon in NA and EUROPE. Plz open your mind and use a system that fits to ouer markets else you wasted a lot of money and time in a doomed game. And i belive you are here to make money so start to rework your sytem now!!! Or else you gonna lose a lot money in NA and EUROPE. Ive i would be the CEO of Snail Games i never would let this happen to my Company.

  19. Xerxes666 on August 17, 2013

    Bey Bey Snail Games noone will miss you much you greedy stupid bastards go to hell.

  20. Name (Required) on August 17, 2013

    Dude… seriously, i really prefered “Pay to win” system than this shi*….

  21. Rip-off is right! on August 17, 2013

    This sounds alot like a pay-to-play game rather than being a free-to-play game.

    • HI HGI on August 18, 2013

      you would spend a lot more money than a regular free to play game for sure… you get items all the time and all the good stuff is locked lol

  22. Bic Boi on August 17, 2013

    Pay to have loot?


  23. zakena on August 17, 2013


    oh god the amnt of time resources and money wasted on this horrid game ……when they can use all of that to make a better one …..

    when will we get a company that makes a MMO based on the gamer need.

    Hell if i was told there is a company out there wanting to make a MMO but will use ideas from Online gamer im so going there.

  24. Rebelkilla on August 17, 2013

    Anyway i will play the game to laugh at people that play it.Wanna see how many morons will pay for it.

  25. Mgamer on August 17, 2013

    Snail Games….wow, you just killed a game before it even got started. Talk about no need to pay.

  26. scorcher23 on August 16, 2013


  27. Golgo28 on August 16, 2013

    On the brightside this will probaly go into the text books on game design as how to kill a game before it’s release.

  28. chefmadness on August 16, 2013

    this looks totally lame!!!! no one will go for this & it will be an epic fail!

  29. Arieswar on August 16, 2013

    This is the worst idea I have ever seen.

  30. Randyblythe on August 16, 2013

    This game will crash into the earth so hard that snail games will go under with it.

    Nobody will miss them with this model.

  31. iluvgamez on August 16, 2013

    No,no,no. I wont even look at a game with such a payment option.
    If im forced to pay to enjoy a game fully, its not free to play. Companys really need to stop beeing greedy. Make a good game and belive in it and you will make your money (Path of Exile, League of Legends, Dota2)
    Good Luck Snail games but not with my wallet. xD

    • What on August 17, 2013

      Dota 2 only sells cosmetic items to make a profit.

  32. FPS2RPG on August 16, 2013

    This game is not gonna last 6 months.

    • TRollERZ on August 16, 2013

      I don’t think this game will last so long 😀

    • removalmitt on August 18, 2013

      closest I’ll get is looking at a game play vid at most

      yeah it’s ftp and they are trying to find ways to make money but….they’ll find out the hard way fast about this route, if they aren’t successful in building a player base the game will bomb fast (see recent games which are just being wrapped up with no fight)

  33. Charlawls on August 16, 2013


    Followed by, what the flipping hell?! What garbage. I’ll just wait for Wildstar, thank you.

  34. gqninja on August 16, 2013

    This game sounds really lame.. #mounted