Dropships and Spacecraft Price Reduction and Compensation for Existing Owners

General 'Out Of Character' news & events within Battletech-Mercenaries
Storywriter J. Allen
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Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:04 am

Dropships and Spacecraft Price Reduction and Compensation for Existing Owners

Postby Storywriter J. Allen » Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:43 pm

Hello all,

The staff have asked me to elaborate on a major change in our game. As of a couple days ago, we have changed the C-Bill listed price of dropships and space vessels. The discount ratio is 45 percent. Omitted from this are dropships that were already at or under 50 million C-Bills and jumpships that were already at or under 200 million C-Bills.

The staff have taken snapshots of what all units currently own. We are in the process of calculating the C-Bill difference between what you have bought and what you own now. All units will receive the C-Bill difference as a cash refund. So for example if you bought a Seeker when it was listed at 100 million, and it is now listed as 55 million, you will see the difference appear in the C-Bill bank account of your unit.

We are calculating these refunds now and you should see the difference appear in unit accounts in the coming days. You don’t need to do anything.

We know this can’t account for every small difference. For example you may not have paid 100 million for that Seeker, you may have been paid less due to reputation discounts. But tracking all these tiny variations is extremely difficult and would bog down the refund process and so we will be relying on the baseline before/after C-Bill value.

We have made this change for a number of reasons. Among the staff there was a consensus that dropships and spacecraft are exceptionally expensive and that the path to acquiring them was both a difficult grind and too limited for options. In canon Battletech, units can do things like take out a loan, or hire an independently owned/operated vessel. BTM has never made those kind of options available here.

Over the years the previous BTM staff have tried to address this issue, but could never seem to reach a consensus. The issue tended to get bogged down in complex debate and no action would be taken. Instead a few staffers tried to aid the situation by quietly discounting some dropships and spacecraft on an individual basis. That’s why a few ship classes like the Aurora and Gazelle had price tags in the tens of millions of C-Bills, rather than the hundreds of millions.

This is the first time (that I am aware of) that the staff have reached a consensus and found a path forward that we hope satisfies all concerns.

Many units have relied on large numbers of the extremely discounted dropships to make up their fleets. We hope that this will let units explore the wider range of dropships and spacecraft classes that Battletech has to offer. Rather than just the artificially cheap ones.

There is another significant reason for this change. The staff have been trying to make our game more accessible to casual players. Individuals who have jobs and families and in general, less time and energy to play the game. The steps we have taken so far include offering singleplayer units and no minimum WC requirements.

That kind of unit and player, writing less per contract but enjoying our game all the same, would find it difficult to purchase new dropships and spacecraft. By reducing the cost of these assets, we hope to make more of them affordable to the subset of our community engaged in a more casual playstyle.

Some of you may look at this change and see it as unfair to the longstanding units, or units of the past. The units who did the writing and the grind to purchase these expensive assets at those prices. To those who feel that way I would say, it’s become a different BTM. That BTM had few qualms about burning out players who had a lot of time to write and play our game. The expectation was, if they got burned out and left, there would be others to replace them and the game would continue.

The BTM of today has shifted its perspective. We can no longer afford to burn out the community. We are trying to rebuild the community. With Battletech fans and writers who want to play the game at a pace that is amiable to their schedule and the level of commitment they are willing to make. Units who wish to grind away at a feverish pace can continue to do so. With the bigger paydays and higher rewards that come with that. While units and players who want to savor the game at a slower clip are free to do that as well.

The units of yesterday aren’t being shut out either. With the refunds we are making, they stand to be compensated for their hard work. Keeping the same assets and being refunded the difference. We respect what they’ve done and the work they have put in. We are making sure that they are compensated for it.

The staff has selected a path forward that we believe respects what the people playing our game have achieved up to this point, while simultaneously making a broad and significant improvement to our game that aligns with our vision for what BTM will be now and going forward. We've done our best to ensure that the way we are handling this change will do the most good for everybody, and won't punish anyone because they bought a dropship at the old price last month or three years ago.

If you have any questions, concerns or feedback, feel free to post them here or contact a staff member via PM.

Thank you for your time.
Staff Position
Storyline Writer Jon Allen

MUCO Character
Captain Niobe Bey
Commanding Officer
The Great White Fleet MU

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