Over the weekend, Trion Worlds promoted its new Revelation Pack for ArcheAge via Facebook. One reader asked if the packs would be available for the upcoming Fresh Start servers, which are meant to give all players a new starting point with no inherent advantages, and the response from Trion Worlds was:

Great question — No, this pack is for Legacy Servers only. The Fresh Start servers will have a different pack available at launch that’s focused on cosmetics not power or P2W. We want to make sure everyone playing on the fresh start server has an even playing field.

So if the Fresh Start packs are “focused on cosmetics not power or P2W”… does that mean the regular Revelation Packs are focused on power or P2W? Did Trion just admit that ArcheAge is pay-to-win?

That’s the cause taken up by fans on that Facebook page, as well as on Reddit. Frankly, I think it’s a little overblown, as far as being a “smoking gun” that implicates Trion as admitting ArcheAge is P2W. Rather, I think it was just the community rep going to any length to assure players that the Fresh Start pack wasn’t P2W, rather than comparing it to the other packs and saying that they’re P2W. Whether ArcheAge in general is pay-to-win, apart from these packs… well, that’s a well-trodden topic that I’d rather not get into right now. I’m sure the comments won’t disappoint, though.

Here’s Trion’s big misstep, though, and it’s one that nearly all game companies have been making over the past few years: In their frenetic haste to unilaterally declare that their games aren’t pay-to-win, all developers and publishers have managed to do is render the term meaningless. It’s the first question that’s asked of any new game, especially a free-to-play or non-subscription one, and the answer is always — always — “No, our game isn’t pay-to-win.” Wavering the tiniest bit, or introducing even the slightest sliver of a notion that that isn’t 100% the case — as seen above — lights the community on fire and invites a horde of negative commentary that causes more trouble than the original question ever could have.

At this point, saying “Our game isn’t pay-to-win” is about as meaningful as saying “Our game is fun.” Of course the creators of the game are going to say it’s fun, but that’s not for them to decide. Everyone has their own definition of pay-to-win, just as they have their own definition of fun, and what works for one person may be reviled by another. The question will still be asked, though, and if you must speak on the question, the answer should be as brief and unequivocal as possible, to give the players as little ammunition as possible for an attack.

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.


  1. Whether they admitted unknowingly or it’s just a reason for people to bash them, it doesn’t matter. People aren’t quite interested in ArcheAge anymore. I played a couple of weeks upon launch and wasn’t very impressed with the game. It certainly has quality, but still manages to feel “souless” like the rest of the Asian MMORPGs.

    Now, if I read that a Vanilla WoW private server is going to launch a new server for a fresh start (Elysium), I’d be so excited to start anew, even after playing for 9 years. As with ArcheAge, I can’t be bothered the least, it feels “souless”, lacks depth and the world feels too uninspired – generic forests left and right.

  2. Archeage is dead thx to Trion! And i’m not giving thx, thats saying that Trion are a crap company who never should of been allowed to even breath ArheAge, let alone have words.
    XLGames must be blind, death & dumb.

    • I’ve seen people who denied this and saying trion is one of the best companies and archeage isn’t paid 2 win. I thought they were clueless or complete idiots. Your 100% right about trion ruining archeage. XLgames probably isn’t pulling out since trion is making them alot of money it’s the only reason I can still see why they are still with them otherwise I think they would of been looking for another publisher because a smart developer would know trion isn’t worth the time and effort. But if your a developer it would be best to search up the publishers backhistory and know what projects they worked on like rift for example. If your a developer you wanna join up with the best company possible not a crap one. And it’s clear trion worlds is one of the crap companies. They won’t even let me unsubscribe from their email newsletters. I’ve even requested it multiple times but they still keep sending me them every month. I’m making a new email I’m sick of their BS

  3. “saying “Our game isn’t pay-to-win” is about as meaningful as saying “Our game is fun.”
    I feel like a more important conclusion should be that ASKING whether or not the game is pay to win is about as stupid as asking if it’s fun. You’d never get a full and unbiased answer, and even if you did it would be of no use because you’re biased yourself.

    I think I’d prefer to see the term “P2W” banned on the internet. It’s worse than any swear word known to mankind. Using it should be punishable by “read only” mode for like a week.

    • That’s because the f2p companies love to twist it, the most logical definition is far from being biased, either you are even in the game no matter how much you spend or you are not, there is nothing inbetween, for example you have games like dota2/poe vs any of the trion games really. The definition is so wildly misused by people due to marketing of the companies, always claiming their game isn’t p2w, while selling booster packs and gear on the game store, add to that people that spent money on those games having to justify their purchase defending the product blindly.
      Im quite amazed they were people still thinking that Archeage wasnt p2w, and making a fuss of trion admitting it is, when it was like that since the very start, not to mention the fiasco with land buying on launch.

      • No one is interested in “the most logical definition”. Since the very beginning this term was used as little more than an insult, and over time it completely lost its meaning. It conveys no information now, only hate and ignorance.


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