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View Full Version : Numbers are scary: Silver vs. Gold.


Odyssey1319
06-30-2011, 01:05 PM
With the release of the Impulse archetype, I decided to run some numbers, comparing the cost of a Gold member versus a Silver player with all of the Gold bonuses they can get. It may surprise you.

For the purposes of keeping everything organized, I'm not including the freeform characters in my analysis because they aren't available for purchase for Silver members. Theoretically, it would be 15,640 Cryptic Points*, or $200.00 USD*.

So, let's get down to business:


Gold lifetime members have 16 character slots. Silver members have 2 character slots. The difference is 14.
Gold members get 2 free costume slots at levels 15 and 30. Silver members do not.
Gold members get 13 costume packs free. Silver players must pay separately.
Gold members get all archetypes, 7 travel powers, and all adventure packs for free. Silver members must pay separately.
Gold members get 4 inventory slots for every character. Silver players only have 1, and all purchased slots are per-character.
Gold members have the option of purchasing 4 additional bank slots with in-game currency. Silver players must purchase them with Atari Tokens on a per-character basis.
Gold members have 100 auction house slots. Silver players have 10, and must buy them on a per-character basis.
Gold members receive 1 free hideout. Silver players must pay separately.


Taking these into account, let's add up the prices listed in the Cryptic Store to get the final Cryptic Point balance necessary to purchase all of these options:


14 character slots: 7,850
1 account costume slot: 450
13 costume packs: 5,320
8 archetypes: 7,360
7 travel powers: 2,940
3 adventure packs: 1,260
48 inventory slots: 28,800
64 bank slots: 20,480
1,440 auction house slots: 28,800
1 free hideout: 500


You need 103,760 Cryptic Points to purchase all of the available Gold lifetime benefits. That's 20 bundles of 5,000 Cryptic Points at $62.50 USD each, 1 bundle of 2,000 Cryptic Points for $25.00 USD, 1 bundle of 1,500 Cryptic Points for $18.75 USD, and 1 bundle of 1,000 Cryptic Points for $12.50 USD, which comes to:

$1,306.25 USD

A lifetime Gold subscription is $299.99 USD. It comes with freeform power selection, no advertisements in voice chat, free character slots whenever you get a character to level 40, and 400 Cryptic Points per month, as well as all future archetypes. So, it may seem expensive, but in reality, you're saving 77.034258373205741626794258373206% compared to buying everything separately without a subscription. For anyone who buys a lifetime subscription, it literally paid itself off 67.128752501667778519012675116744 months before you actually bought it.

If you were to subscribe on a per-month basis, the numbers would be slightly different. Gold monthly members only get 8 character slots, versus 16 for lifetime members.


6 character slots: 3,360
1 account costume slot: 450
13 costume packs: 5,320
8 archetypes: 7,360
7 travel powers: 2,940
3 adventure packs: 1,260
24 inventory slots: 4,800
32 bank slots: 10,240
720 auction house slots: 14,400
1 free hideout: 500


The total is 50,630 Cryptic Points, 10 bundles of 5,000 for $62.50 USD each, and 1 bundle of 1,000 at $12.50 USD, which comes to:

$637.50 USD

Gold monthly members also get freeform power selection, no advertisements in voice chat, 400 Cryptic Points per month, free character slots whenever you get a character to level 40, and all future archetypes. If the game shut down at any time in the next 42.528352234823215476984656437625 months, you're not losing any money.

* - 24 power frameworks, assuming one archetype per framework. 7 free archetypes. 920 Cryptic Points per premium framework. 920 x 17 = 15,640. Three bundles of 5,000 Cryptic Points ($187.50 USD) and one bundle of 1,000 Cryptic Points ($12.50 USD) = 16,000 Cryptic Points ($200.00 USD).

DarkJeff
06-30-2011, 01:54 PM
400 Tokens per month is about $5, right? So in 10 months you've made up the difference, and would have been enjoying all the exclusive stuff in the meantime?

Odyssey1319
06-30-2011, 02:34 PM
I'm going to assume you're talking about the lifetime option. If you consider that buying all of the Gold stuff alone would cost $250, you're really only paying $49.99 to play the game, so it'll pay off in 3.3348899266177451634422948632422 months.

Zyat
06-30-2011, 03:35 PM
A little something else to muddy the waters...

Lifetime and gold members get a free bonus character slot every time they get a character to lvl 40. So feel free to add the potential cost of 20 to 30 extra character slots onto that silver tab there. I's say infinite character slots but... I don't see why anyone would have more than 2 of each powerset, max.

LordThunder
06-30-2011, 05:19 PM
I made these exact calculations and bought a lifetime sub.

-- LT

avalanch07
06-30-2011, 05:37 PM
Don't forget to factor in the tax you have to pay 4 times. I think the tax rate for most states is 8-9 percent?

With the release of the Impulse archetype, I decided to run some numbers, comparing the cost of a Gold member versus a Silver player with all of the Gold bonuses they can get. It may surprise you.

For the purposes of keeping everything organized, I'm not including the freeform characters in my analysis because they aren't available for purchase for Silver members. Theoretically, it would be 15,640 Atari Tokens*, or $200.00 USD*.

So, let's get down to business:


Gold lifetime members have 16 character slots. Silver members have 2 character slots. The difference is 14.
Gold members get 2 free costume slots at levels 15 and 30. Silver members do not.
Gold members get all archetypes, 7 travel powers, and all adventure packs for free. Silver members must pay separately.
Gold members get 4 inventory slots. Silver players only have 1.


Taking these into account, let's add up the prices listed in the Cryptic Store to get the final Atari Token balance necessary to purchase all of these options:


14 character slots: 7,850
1 account costume slot: 450
7 archetypes: 6,440
7 travel powers: 2,940
3 adventure packs: 1,260
3 inventory slots: 600


You need 19,540 Atari Tokens to purchase all of the available Gold benefits. That's 4 bundles of 5,000 Atari Tokens at $62.50 USD each, which comes to:

$250.00 USD

A lifetime Gold subscription is $299.99 USD. The difference between the two is $49.99 USD. With that $49.99 USD comes freeform power selection, no advertisements in voice chat, and 400 Atari Tokens per month, as well as all future archetypes. So, in reality, it may seem expensive, but the price tag isn't that much more than a Silver account with most of the same benefits.

If you were to subscribe on a per-month basis, the numbers would be slightly different. Gold monthly members only get 8 character slots, versus 16 for lifetime members.


6 character slots: 3,360
1 account costume slot: 450
7 archetypes: 6,440
7 travel powers: 2,940
3 adventure packs: 1,260
3 inventory slots: 600


That would come to 15,050 Atari Tokens. Three bundles of 5,000 for $62.50 USD and one bundle of 500 for $6.25 USD comes to:

$193.75 USD

Gold monthly members also get freeform power selection, no advertisements in voice chat, 400 Atari Tokens per month, and all future archetypes.

* - 24 power frameworks, assuming one archetype per framework. 7 free archetypes. 920 Atari Tokens per premium framework. 920 x 17 = 15,640. Three bundles of 5,000 Atari Tokens ($187.50 USD) and one bundle of 1,000 Atari Tokens ($12.50 USD) = 16,000 Atari Tokens ($200.00 USD).




Staff: one moment while I read over your issue

anonymous: ok

Staff: the amount of the tax will be dependent on your states tax laws

anonymous: I live in louisiana

Staff: you will have to look up your states tax rate, we do not have that information

anonymous: ok, thanks.

Odyssey1319
06-30-2011, 05:46 PM
Don't forget to factor in the tax you have to pay 4 times. I think the tax rate for most states is 8-9 percent?

There aren't any taxes on purchases made through Cryptic for Atari Tokens as far as I'm aware, unless you live in the European Union. Then, you have to pay VAT.

avalanch07
06-30-2011, 05:52 PM
http://www.champions-online.com/terms_of_use
You agree that you will be solely responsible for paying any applicable taxes related to the acquisition use, or access of Atari Tokens.


Atari Tokens. You may participate in our Atari Tokens service offering if you have a valid, active Account. The Atari Tokens service offering is a redeemable point system (“Atari Tokens”) which can be used to license in-game virtual items through the Service. Atari Tokens are sold through the Service and the Game, either by purchasing Atari Tokens online or submitting a pre-paid code through the Service. Information on how to purchase Atari Tokens can be found here: http://www.champions-online.com/atari_tokens. Please note that any Atari Tokens you obtain through a Atari Game Card or other prepaid method of payment will not be usable until such time as you register it online with your Account. Cryptic has the right to, and may, limit the amount of Atari Tokens you can purchase or that you can maintain in your Account at any given time. Cryptic may also provide you with Atari Tokens as a part of a promotion, or through other means, such as for completing certain quests or achievements through your participation in the Game or Cryptic-sponsored contests or sweepstakes. You agree that you will be solely responsible for paying any applicable taxes related to the acquisition use, or access of Atari Tokens. You are solely responsible for verifying that the correct amount of Atari Tokens has been added to or deducted from your Account for each Atari Tokens transaction.

Odyssey1319
06-30-2011, 07:10 PM
I wasn't taxed on purchases I made. I live in Massachusetts.

MASSIVE EDIT: It just came to my attention that inventory slots in the Cryptic Store are per-character unlocks, rather than account-wide, and that several costume options are complimentary to Gold members. This required me to re-do a lot of the work, but the new numbers are up.

FU5E
07-01-2011, 01:50 AM
Hiho Odyssey1319,

great comparison that you did here. Awsome and Rep +1 for that. Im so lucky to have LTS from release on. :)

Greets FU5E

Odyssey1319
07-01-2011, 08:27 AM
Hiho Odyssey1319,

great comparison that you did here. Awsome and Rep +1 for that. Im so lucky to have LTS from release on. :)

Greets FU5E

Thank you! I just added some risk assessments to the lifetime and monthly subscriptions, in case people were on the fence about either.

Rawr! Panda!
07-01-2011, 10:54 AM
Not to rain on your parade, but some of those costume packs can be unlocked through normal play by just killing the requisite number of bad guys. I'm a costume completist and there are still a few of those outfits that I wont even touch (use/buy), so maybe knock off a few just for averages (I doubt everyone will want to use every part available).

It's still a great deal though. Nice work on the numbers!

Zaxxon
07-01-2011, 03:35 PM
There aren't any taxes on purchases made through Cryptic for Atari Tokens as far as I'm aware, unless you live in the European Union. Then, you have to pay VAT.

In the US, unless you live in California (Cryptic Studios) or New York (Atari) then you aren't required to pay state taxes. You only pay state sales tax if you live in the state that the business is registered as doing business in.

Most Cryptic Studios nor Atari even consider it, so it is based on the honor system.

Although if you live in California, you are supposed to pay sales tax for online purchases no matter where the business is registered. This Bill passed recently. GG Cali.

Disclaimer: I'm a laymen with taxes but I do know the basics.

avalanch07
07-01-2011, 06:31 PM
Just noticed this in the mail, how much would we need to buy with this offer? :)

http://files.atari.com/email_newsletters/champions/silver/co_newsletter_headline_20110701_01.jpg
This Independence Day weekend, we’re celebrating with a 20% bonus on all purchases of Atari Token Bundles. Buy any Atari Token Bundle and receive 20% extra Cryptic Points to spend in the Champions Online C-Store (http://dr.bluehornet.com/ct/4167718:5205020354:m:1:410346986:28A489A1B6139E52F D810F4625CED394)! Atari Tokens can be purchased here (http://dr.bluehornet.com/ct/4167719:5205020354:m:1:410346986:28A489A1B6139E52F D810F4625CED394).
Offer ends Tuesday, July 5 at 10 AM (PDT). Cryptic Points are valid only for purchases in Champions Online and Star Trek Online.

MotionTracker
07-01-2011, 08:12 PM
I just bought 800 atari coins a couple days ago, I didn't have to pay sales tax. I live in California. Now, there's a deal on the coins...

Minago
07-02-2011, 09:38 AM
so where is the factor where they should be paying you to play this crap game ? :D

avalanch07
07-02-2011, 09:55 AM
FYI it isn't a crap game.

Odyssey1319
07-02-2011, 11:20 AM
To be fair, I can see why someone would find this game to be not so enjoyable. The real fun comes from building everything about your hero from the ground up. Archetypes limit the customization severely.

Zaxxon
07-03-2011, 02:49 PM
I just bought 800 atari coins a couple days ago, I didn't have to pay sales tax. I live in California. Now, there's a deal on the coins...
Well yeah because the Terms of Service says that you are responsible for it. Hence nobody actually pays it, though you are supposed to. If I bought tokens, I doubt I'd pay it either.

DarkJeff
07-04-2011, 12:27 PM
My ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ min/max obsessiveness caused me to buy a LTS for Freeform. :mad:

...and now I keep rebuilding! Argh! :(

kenpojujitsu3
07-04-2011, 01:43 PM
Good write up on the cost analysis.

Odyssey1319
07-11-2011, 12:10 PM
Added updated figures for the hideouts.

Odyssey1319
07-13-2011, 07:50 AM
Added updated figures that take per-character bank slot and auction slot purchases into account.

LordThunder
07-16-2011, 05:02 AM
I like this post. However, I would like to ask you to remove the insane amount of digits when you're listing fractions. one or maybe 2 decimals is really enough the give people an idea.

-- LT

PS: There ARE actually rules how many digits you should list at most, based on the numbers you start with, but let's not go there.

FlukeSDS
07-18-2011, 10:26 AM
Good stuff, +rep for you.

ChaosEsper
07-21-2011, 02:12 PM
Well yeah because the Terms of Service says that you are responsible for it. Hence nobody actually pays it, though you are supposed to. If I bought tokens, I doubt I'd pay it either.

Yeah, legally you're supposed to report it when you do your taxes every year but I doubt anyone really does that.

Odyssey1319
07-22-2011, 08:46 AM
UPDATE: The cost of The Disciple archetype has been added to the analyses.

KissaXD
07-26-2011, 06:10 AM
Thank you for this thread, it helped me to figure out a lot like whether me and my husband would stay silver and buy points or go gold. As it turns out we went for the monthly subscription thingy

+1 rep to the OP

EDIT: it seems I'm unable to give a rep point, sorry
I'll do it minecraft style then: Here! Have some diamonds! ****

Odyssey1319
08-21-2011, 08:24 AM
Now that the sale of Cryptic Studios to Perfect World is finalized and complete, I changed every instance of "Atari Tokens" in the original post to "Cryptic Points" to avoid any confusion.

MithranArkanere
08-22-2011, 02:32 PM
As a Guild Wars player I prefer pay-once options. So the one time payment sounds way better that staying silver and sticking to micropayments, or paying a fee.

I would really be getting it, if it wasn't for so many bugs the game has. But again, as a Guild Wars player, I'm used to having bugs that prevent completion of missions and quests fixed within a day, or a week at most, but CO has some bugs like those around ever since 2009. I don't mind visual glitches or armors that look weird or missing armor pieces, or some misspellings here and there, or a skill with some unintended behavior for a long time, but if you can't actually finish the quests you take due to some bug, that's a big down for me. Too frustrating.
If they focused more on fixing those quests before adding new features, I'll would probably get it for sure.

So it's a gamble.
If you pay, those bugs may get fixed, and you get to enjoy the full game and all the exclusive stuff meanwhile.
If you don't, you are not paying for an unfinished product, and if they close the game you lose nothing.