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Playing With / Allegedly Free Game

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Basic Trope: A game that you can play for free, but you will have to pay money to access other game areas or get particular abilities and items.

  • Straight: Troper Battles is free-to-play, but you must pay money to access content beyond a certain point and/or equipment that is far better than you normally get.
  • Exaggerated: Troper Battles is free-to-play, but to get anywhere past the first level or two, you have to pay anywhere between $5 and $100.
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  • Downplayed: You can access most of the content in Troper Battles without paying a cent, but there is a piece of equipment or two that you can buy to make your character slightly more powerful than everyone else.
  • Justified: Troper Battles cost just over $750,000,000 to make, and the developers need to make the money back somehow.
  • Inverted:
    • "Troper Battles" runs on an optional-donation system where everyone gets the same things inside the game, but those who donate get The Merch as well.
    • Or, Troper Battles costs money to play, but you can earn real world money in-game to the point where you break even, or even turn a profit.
  • Subverted: Troper Battles starts off allegedly free, but later becomes more and more accessible to players who aren't willing to spend money...
  • Double Subverted: ...only for it to go back to the original allegedly free model.
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  • Parodied: All the additional content the game offers is literal garbage, which you obtain from a beggar NPC called "Micro Transaction" who repeatedly asks for money from the player. Pay enough and he gives out "original weapons and gear" (useless stuff like empty cans and cardboard tubes) in return, which he claims are necessary to access new areas (they aren't).
  • Zig-Zagged: Depending on the system, region or even time of the year, the game is either allegedly free or really free.
  • Averted: Troper Battles is either freeware or pay-up-front, with no microtransactions whatsoever.
  • Enforced: It's a profitable model, so the company decides to go with it to maximize their earnings.
  • Lampshaded: A character in Troper Battles has this as one of his lines of dialogue: "Man, why is this premium gear so powerful? I just want to play the game fair!"
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  • Invoked: The company is developing a seemingly free game, but with the intention of making as much money with it as possible (like any business would).
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied: The company puts a price on the game, thus it can't be called (allegedly) free.
  • Discussed: ???
  • Conversed: ???
  • Deconstructed: The marketing campaign massively advertised the game as free. When players discover that Tropers Battle is an Allegedly Free Game, massive public outcry ensues, few people actually play the paid part of the game and the company goes bankrupt as a result.
  • Reconstructed: Developers from the old company found an entirely new company and launch a free-to-play Spiritual Successor, taking in account the negative feedback from the older game in order to avoid shadier practices.

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