Station Access: Want Fries With That?

Posted: March 1, 2007 by Kendricke in The Gaming Industry

It was only a matter of time.

SOE announced this week that come April 1, the price for a Station Access account is increasing to $29.99 from the current $24.99 model.  This comes less than a year since the last increase, which increased the price from $21.99.

Now, the unofficial (i.e. – SOE didn’t come out and say it) perception for many is that this has to do with Vanguard’s inclusion in the Station Access family (which, of course, was part of the perception back when we had the first price increase, since Vanguard was announced as part of the Station Access less than 2 months after the price increase announcement at that time).

Now, we could definately make a case over whether or not $30 is too much for Station Access .  We could even argue over whether or not placing more games on the pass should increase its price.  In any event, that’s the reality of the situation right there, and all arguments (at least at this point) would be purely academic.

So, instead of pointing out what has already come to pass, I’d like instead to make a suggestion to my 3 semi-loyal readers.  I’d like to see a new package offered.

If SOE is a resturaunt and all their games are on the menu, then the Station Access is their all-you-can-eat buffet.  Other than the buffet, you only have access to the ala carte menu, which offers single titles at set prices.

Why not a combo plate offering?  For a lower price of say, $19.99/month, you can choose any 3 flagship titles for your personalized subscription.  Better yet, allow the customer to switch up titles from month to month. 

Perhaps this month, you choose EQ2/EQ1/Vanguard.  Next month, you switch it up with SWG/MXO/PS.  The choice becomes yours.  SOE gets to see which games are bringing in the bucks, and customers get a middle option which doesn’t feel like more of a burden on their wallets.  It feels like a bit of a value…which is part of the reason for combination platters in the first place, isn’t it?

CORRECTION:  I had incorrectly labled the Station Access package as Station Pass.  I have since corrected the entries.

  1. Stargrace says:

    I like that suggestion far better then the sudden price hike to $29.99 (American, so it’s about $38 Canadian for me, x2 since there’s two in the house who have it). Almost $100 a month to play one video game (EQ2 for the boyfriend, and Vanguard/EQ2 for me) is a little unreasonable without some sort of extra included in there. It’s different if you actually play all of those SoE titles, sure, you’re saving money. But you could just go out and purchase a 2nd account and pay the monthly fee for that, and have access to 12 characters total instead of 10, if you’re only doing it for the extra slots.

  2. kendricke says:

    That’s a great point and it got me to thinking even more on the subject. Even with Station Access, you can’t pick up a second account for a game you’re enjoying. What if you could do that with the combo platter? This month, I’d pick up EQ2/EQ2/Vanguard, as an example? Now I’m paying for two different Everquest 2 accounts.

  3. Nayam says:

    I agree about the “combo platter” idea of being able to put two EQ2 accounts together without having to pay around $60 a month for it would be great for us starving college students. For me I only play EQ2 and have the Station Access for the extra char. slots, not for the other games that are out there.

    But what also makes wonder about this price increase is if Sony trying to make up in profit with the players they have because of the ones they have lost to WoW or other games?

  4. […] The speculation at the time was that this was to help cover Vanguard being brought into the SOE family of MMOs, and there was worry that with each new game a future price increase would come. […]

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