Square Enix Addresses Chocobo GP Issues, Offers Free Mithril And Rebalancing
Producer uses all his bravest words to try and appease players' discontent.
Square Enix's Final Fantasy-themed kart racer Chocobo GP has gotten off to a rough start. That's not due to the gameplay -- which has its issues, but what new game doesn't? -- but its monetization, which had lots of people, our own Magicman included, calling it a full-priced game with free-to-play monetization. A season pass, in-game microtransactions, and a general "nickel-and-diming" feeling is onerous enough in a F2P game, and it's even worse in one that costs $50 right out of the box. But hey, I guess they felt they needed to make up for Babylon's Fall's disappointing numbers somehow...
The game's producer, Hironori Okayama, posted a lengthy statement in Japanese on Twitter, which Eurogamer roughly translated as being an apology for bugs and the standard promise to fix everything "as soon as possible." As expected, more characters, tracks, and costumes will arrive in future seasons, coming roughly every two months. Okayama also said that his team "may need to adjust the character's balance to maintain a healthy competitive environment and modify basic functions to improve playability."
While the translated post stops short of saying that it will make massive changes to monetization, a few peace offerings have been made to appease disgruntled players. Eurogamer noted that players "should start noticing a welcome relaxation of the overall score required to raise the prize level," which will make getting characters like Squall Leonheart less difficult.
In addition, every player will receive 500 Mithril, and Okayama said Square Enix is "thinking of placing things that are unlikely to affect gameplay, such as costume changes, in higher rewards, Mithril shops, and so on." The free "Lite" version of the game might also see some of its restrictions dropped, making it easier to hold events.
Considering Chocobo GP's 1.9 user score on Metacritic, some massive changes need to be made so that this doesn't turn into a disaster on par with Final Fantasy: All the Bravest, which was also roundly scorned for its monetization practices. A letter acknowledging some of the issues is a good start, but we'll have to reserve judgment until we see exactly what changes are made.
About the Author
Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.
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