Let’s talk server monetisation – the follow-up Q+A

EULA STUFF

Hello!

Thanks for all the questions you’ve sent over regarding last week’s EULA post. It’s a lively topic.

A group of Mojangstas met this morning to discuss the most common questions we received over the weekend. The following post is the result of that discussion.

Though we’re happy to clarify, most of these points were mentioned in last week’s explanation of the EULA. Please give it a read before diving into this more detailed Q+A.

 

Are any servers exempt to the EULA?
No. It affects all servers and players equally.

Do server hosts have a grace period to implement changes to their servers?
Yes. All servers must comply with the EULA by August 1st, 2014.

Can I charge for access to my server?
Yes. How players join a server is up to you. Single entrance fees or subscriptions are both allowed.

How often am I allowed to charge players to access my server?
You can charge players as regularly as you like. You can even charge for timed access if you think it’s the best way to monetise your server.

What counts as a server? Are proxies one big server, or lots of smaller ones?
A server is something a user connects to with their client. The user is on a different server when they leave the one they are connected to and manually join another (in the multiplayer screen). Virtual servers and proxies make no difference here, to the client it’s the same server.

Can I charge access to a specific part of my server, such as a minigame or world?
No, you cannot charge for any part of a server other than the initial access. Once on a server, all players must have the same gameplay privileges. You may make a different server for the user to connect to which features “premium” areas, and charge for access to that server instead, but the benefits cannot carry over to your other servers.

So can I charge for my minigames or mods?
Yes, so long as all players on your server have access to the features.

Can I offer a limited trial period for all users?
Yes. So long as both trial and paying users have access to the same gameplay features during the trial, we’re cool with it.

Can I give paying users priority access to my server?
Yes, but you cannot restrict gameplay elements to specific users.

Does the EULA still apply for access to user-created mods?
Yes. It doesn’t make a difference who made the mods, or how they were implemented onto your server. All mods require Minecraft to run. You are not allowed to charge for Minecraft features which affect gameplay.

What do you mean by “hard currency” compared to “soft currency”?
Hard currency is real money or anything that can be converted into real money, including Bitcoins. Soft currency is available in-game only, and has no real-world value. The restriction in the EULA only apply to hard currency; you may unlock anything with soft currency.

Can I sell “kits” for hard currency if I provide a balanced alternative for non-paying users?
If the “kits” contain gameplay-affecting features they are not allowed. Gameplay balance is not relevant to the EULA. If the items included in the kit are purely cosmetic, you can charge real money/hard currency.

My server features a currency that you can earn through gameplay, but which can also be bought for hard currency. Is that OK?
Soft currencies that are solely earned in-game are fine, but you cannot sell in-game currency for hard currency. Hybrid/dual currency systems are not allowed.

Can I sell boosters, which provide faster gold gain, XP, or other in-game resources for hard currency?
No – boosters, item generators, and all other features that affect gameplay are not allowed.

So how do I make money from cosmetic items?
You can sell cosmetic items for hard currency directly or allow players to fund an “account” specific to your server. It’s up to the host of the server to decide how this works. Remember that capes are the exception to this rule – you are not allowed to give them away or sell them.

Can I sell ranks on my server?
Yes. Ranks are allowed so long as any perks gained are cosmetic. Coloured names, prefixes, special hats etc. are fine.

Can users purchase something that affects the entire server, such as a temporary XP boost?
Yes, but everyone who can access the server must be able to use the feature, regardless of whether they purchased it or not.

Can I award all players with a gameplay feature if I reach a donation goal within a time period
Yes, so long as all players receive the benefit regardless of who donated then it’s OK.

Can I charge for access to server commands?
Yes, as long as their effects are purely cosmetic. Commands that affect gameplay, such as a command to fly, cannot be sold for hard currency.

If all players get access to a feature such as a plot of land, can I sell access to multiple plots for hard currency?
No – that would be a gameplay affecting change, so it’s not allowed. All player who access your server must have the same gameplay features offered to them. The same rule applies to items, such as potions.

How should servers deal with users who have already spent hard currency on features that affect gameplay?
Users may keep the perks they’ve paid for on the condition that the same perks are available to other players on the server. It’s up to the server host to decide how to compensate users for previous transactions.

 

Phew. That was a long one. Thanks for reading, everybody!

Owen – @bopogamel and the Mojangstas


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Battlefield Hardline Thanks You For The Support


It’s been an intense and exciting week for Battlefield Hardline on the E3 showfloor. With the Closed Beta underway, after a live stream from the rooftops, and a new intense multiplayer trailer, the response from all you community members out there has been astounding.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank our great community for your support, and also the publications that honored us with the below nominations and awards. Thank you! We will make sure that Battlefield Hardline will be the awesome experience you deserve.

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Geo Leaderboard Competition: Top Interrogators


One of the unique multiplayer features in Battlefield Hardline is the possibility to perform interrogations on downed enemies. With the hit of a button, players can extract information about the location of the interrogated foe’s team mates, making them visible on the map.

Battlefield Hardline 2 WM

Now, we are looking for the top interrogators out there.

On June 16 at 9AM PDT/6PM CET, we will check the Geo Leaderboards on Battlelog to see who the players with the most interrogations under their belts are. One winner per platform will be announced here on Battlelog/the Battlefield Blog on June 16. Apart from the bragging rights, the winners will be awarded with a Battlefield Hardline E3 t-shirt.

So get going. Hit the streets, bring down your enemies, and start asking some serious questions.


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Powered By PS4 SHAREfactory: Battlefield Hardline Beta Videos


We have seen some truly inspiring gameplay videos from the Battlefield Hardline closed beta since it was launched, and it’s amazing to see the creative ways PlayStation 4 players have been using SHAREfactory, the new rich video editor app for PlayStation 4, to share them with the world.

Below you’ll find two great examples of thrilling videos from the all-out cops and criminals warfare that is Battlefield Hardline – all edited and shared using SHAREfactory.

BlackTrinity knows how to be a nimble Professional, capitalizing on his sniping-on-the-go tactics.

Oscarseymour79 pulls together a montage of worthy Battlefield Hardline moments complete with a road kill, heavy fire fight and deadly RPG hits.

Exclusive Battlefield Hardline SHAREfactory Theme

To show off your participation in the Battlefield Hardline beta, just jump into SHAREfactory to create and share your best gaming moments. In Battlefield Hardline, you can set up a zipline from the top of a building to the ground, and hop on a bike to escape. Or, if you’re riding shotgun as a cop, you can lean out the window to take out suspects in a getaway van before they make off with the loot. The beauty of the game is creating your own moments to show off to the world.

As a bonus, there is a new, exclusive Battlefield Hardline theme available in the app today! With this theme you can personalize your creations with official Battlefield Hardline videos, stickers and transitions.

How to Use SHAREfactory

Using SHAREfactory to create and share your best gaming videos is easy. Watch an easy how-to with Sid Shuman from PlayStation Blog or follow these simple steps to let us, and the world, be blessed with your creations!

- Creating Videos From SHAREfactory

After you have created your video project in SHAREfactory, press the OPTIONS button and select “RENDER MOVIE”. This will create the video and add it to your Capture Gallery.

- Uploading to Facebook

Once the video is created, you will be prompted to push the SHARE button if you want to immediately post to Facebook. If you decide to post later, you can always find the video in your Capture Gallery. (Please note: if you want to share this video with people outside of your friends list, on the upload screen change your “Facebook Audience” setting to “Public”.)

- Copying Your Video to USB and to YouTube

Find your video in the Capture Gallery and press the OPTIONS button. Select “Copy to USB Storage Device”. Once the video is on your USB device, you can use your PC to upload the video to YouTube.

For more Battlefield Hardline info, visit http://battlefield.com/hardline


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Let’s talk server monetisation!

11 copy

Hello!

Let’s get one thing clear: we love it when Minecrafters host servers. Tiny or massive, running vanilla Minecraft or a heavily modded version, we think they’re all great. Playing with friends in persistent worlds is awesome. Everyone knows that.

Over the past week there’s been lots of discussion about Minecraft servers and your right to monetise them. Legally, you are not allowed to make money from our products. There has been one exception to this rule so far – Minecraft videos. We’re about to make a second exception – Minecraft servers.

Hosting servers can be expensive. We want to give community members a way to cover their costs. That said, we don’t want our players to be exploited, or to have a frustrating time unless they pay. The following rules, which may be tweaked at a later date, have been created with those points in mind.

You are allowed to charge players to access your server
So long as the fee is the same for all players, you are allowed to charge for access to your server. You are not allowed to split your playerbase into paying, and non-paying users, nor can you restrict gameplay elements to different tiers of player.

Basically, if you’re charging for access to your server, you are selling a “ticket” and there can only be one type of ticket, no matter how much people are willing to spend.

You are allowed to accept donations
You are allowed to accept donations from your players. You can thank them publicly, or in-game, but can’t give preferential treatment for donating. You are not allowed to restrict gameplay features in an attempt to make money.

You are allowed to provide in-game advertising or sponsorship opportunities
Running servers can be expensive, with that in mind, you are allowed to put adverts in your Minecraft worlds to help with costs. Used within reason, adverts and sponsorship can be good ways to fund a server.

You are allowed to sell in-game items so long as they don’t affect gameplay
We don’t mind you selling items in game, but they must be purely cosmetic. Pets, hats, and particle effects are OK, but swords, invincibility potions, and man-eating pigs are not. We want all players to be presented with the same gameplay features, whether they decide to pay or not.

There is one exception to this rule – capes! We have a lot of fun making cool capes for extra-special members of our community and Minecon attendees. We’d like to keep them as exclusive as possible. So, yeah, no capes please, for free or otherwise.

You cannot charge real-world cash for in-game currency
We don’t mind you making up currencies which are earned through playing, but you are not allowed to sell them for real-world cash. Remember – if the stuff you sell affects gameplay, we’re not cool with it.

Don’t pretend to be us, and provide your customers with loads of info!
If you do decide to monetise your server, you must clearly state that the purchase is not associated with Mojang, declare who the money is going to, and provide a purchase history and contact details. You should also check up on the legality of selling digital items in your specific region.

Thanks for reading!
As I hope you’ve noticed, these rules are making attempts to prevent Minecraft servers becoming “pay-to-win.” We hate the idea of server hosts restricting Minecraft’s features to players who have already bought our game! It seems really mean.

We’re hoping that these rules will give hosts opportunity to continue creating awesome Minecraft worlds, and for our players to enjoy them without being forced to spend.

Have a good day!

Owen – @bopogamel, and your buddies at Mojang.


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Battlefield Hardline: Stun Gun Community Mission


The Battlefield Hardline closed beta is in full swing and players from all over the world have thrown themselves into the all-out cops and criminals warfare. As you know, Battlefield is all about team play, and now we have the ultimate cooperative challenge for you: the very first Battlefield Hardline community mission.

We want you to collectively perform 250,000 takedowns with the Stun Gun in 6 days.

Battlefield Hardline 2 WM

The community mission will be active between June 10, 9AM PDT and June 16, 9AM PDT. If the goal is reached within time, all participating players will be awarded with an exclusive Battlefield Hardline in-game Patch, handed out at retail launch.

Now, charge up your Stun Guns, hit the streets, and go for that 250k!


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Announcing the Battlefield Hardline Closed Beta


Welcome to your new playground! We are very excited to announce that we have made the newly unveiled Battlefield Hardline playable now in a closed multiplayer beta, available on PC and PlayStation 4! This will be a unique chance for you to live out your cops and criminals fantasies – months before the official release on October 21.

To sign up for a chance to play the Battlefield Hardline closed beta, simply head to www.battlefield.com/beta and follow the instructions. (Please note that beta slots are limited).

Sign up for the Battlefield Hardline beta

Battlefield Hardline E3 Live Stream

To experience the thrilling cops and criminals world that is Battlefield Hardline right now, tune in to the exclusive Battlefield Hardline E3 live stream. Coming to you live from the rooftops of downtown Los Angeles, the live stream features 32 selected players going head-to-head in Battlefield Hardline’s multiplayer mayhem.

Watch the Live Stream – Experience the Future of Battlefield

A special message from Steve Papoutsis, Executive Producer on Battlefield Hardline:

To all BATTLEFIELD fans,

The team at Visceral Games and I are stoked to be working on the Battlefield franchise. Taking on this project and the responsibility of creating an all-new Battlefield game is an exciting moment for us as developers, but almost even more so as gamers. A lot of us at Visceral are huge Battlefield fans and have been playing since Battlefield 1942, Vietnam, 2142, Bad Company and more. That’s the great thing about Battlefield – the settings have changed over time but have always retained that same core gameplay formula that we as fans love. And that’s what we’re hoping to do with Battlefield Hardline.

When we first started thinking about what kind of Battlefield game we wanted to make, the cops and criminals theme immediately came up. At the time (about three years ago), there was a great group of modern military shooters out already and the new direction everyone was headed looked to be sci-fi. Having just worked on the Dead Space series, we were ready for a different setting.

But, making a Battlefield game is a huge undertaking, and we didn’t want to immediately jump in. So, we started by developing the last expansion for Battlefield 3, Battlefield 3: End Game. We were really proud of what we accomplished there, introducing dirt bikes to the franchise and creating some fun new maps that added to that great experience.

What End Game really helped us learn was what makes Battlefield so special – the rock, paper, scissors gameplay. Developing a game around that open sandbox in a cops and criminals world is tons of fun. Our daily playtests are always a highlight of the day. After all, who doesn’t like the action of a good crime drama or action movie like Heat, Die Hard, or The Town. We’re focused on creating a game that allows you to feel that rush of being a cop or criminal, by pulling off that big score or feeling that pleasure of making the huge bust. Imagine blowing open vaults, run-and-gun foot pursuits and near escapes via getaway choppers. This is the foundation of Battlefield Hardline.

We’re introducing a lot of cool new twists, which some of you will be able to discover in the closed beta right now. But, we’re also saving some surprises for launch. New gadgets like grappling hooks and ziplines can take you across skyscrapers, and tear gas and gas masks can really affect the battle that’s going on in the streets. We’ve added fun new melee weapons in the game with bats and batons and added a new mechanic in multiplayer called interrogation that fits more in line with the cops and criminals fiction. Not to mention we have our own methods to destruction and set of police and getaway vehicles including a police bearcat armored truck, fast muscle cars and of course street bikes.

We know it’s hard to believe us by just reading this so that’s why we are unveiling this game with a beta where you get to play the High Tension map on two new game modes, Heist and Blood Money. We want gamers to not only see, but also play the game for themselves. Even more important, having a beta this early will also help us test things on our end to help ensure a smooth launch. We are all aware of what happened with Battlefield 4 and we’ve been partnering with DICE to learn more from them and are working with them on things like the recent netcode patch (please note: improvements from this patch are not in the beta, but will be in for launch). We are definitely listening, so please send us your feedback whether it’s through social media or the Battlelog forums.

Before you go, I wanted to quickly touch on singleplayer. We are bringing the Visceral story-telling pedigree that we learned with Dead Space to the campaign of Battlefield Hardline. This will be a more personal experience than your typical shooter with compelling characters, a deeper story and production value like a great crime drama. That’s all I can say about singleplayer for now but keep your eyes peeled for more in the months ahead.

Welcome to Battlefield Hardline. Can’t wait to see you on the streets!

Steve Papoutsis

Executive Producer, Battlefield Hardline

VP, GM Visceral Games


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Pocket Edition 0.9.0 Snapshot. Biggest update ever!

Pocket Edition

Hello!

The Pocket Edition team are a hard-working bunch. Their most recent snapshot is the biggest update to Minecraft: Pocket Edition so far! It really is massive.

If you’re on Android and like the idea of testing these features early, join this Google community, then sign up for the updates.

For those of you who aren’t on Android, this update will be released for all versions of Pocket Edition in the near future with significantly less bugs. Be patient, pocket crafters. It’s going to be great!

Read on for the huge list…

New features

  • Unlimited worlds!
  • New culling algorithm
  • New culling of clouds
  • Tile entities are saved differently
  • New falling mechanics for gravel and sand
  • New insta ticking of water and lava

New blocks

  • Podzol
  • Mycelium
  • Huge mushroom blocks
  • Cocoa
  • End portal frame
  • Double plants
  • More stairs/slabs for new wood types
  • New log types (savanna tree and dark oak)
  • New leafs (savanna tree)
  • Monster egg
  • Stained clay
  • Waterlily
  • New flowers
  • Red sand
  • Hardened clay
  • End stone
  • Granite
  • Diorite
  • Andesite
  • Emerald block
  • Emerald ore
  • New leveldb based saving format
  • New entity handling
  • New crafting screen
  • Remade network code (mostly the same packages but new system).
  • New interact button (to make the game easier for new players)

New mobs

  • Slimes
  • Endermen
  • Wolves
  • Mooshrooms
  • Silverfish

New and updated biomes

  • Deserts
  • Extreme hills
  • Forests
  • Redwood taiga
  • Roofed forests
  • Frozen
  • Jungle
  • Savanna
  • Mesa
  • Mushroom island
  • Taiga
  • Deep ocean
  • Swamps

New world feature generation

  • Sand
  • Boulders
  • Ice patch
  • Ice spike
  • Spike
  • Lake
  • Double plants
  • Ground bushes
  • Fancy oaks
  • Jungle tree
  • Mega jungle tree
  • Mega pine tree
  • Savanna tree
  • Swamp tree
  • Huge mushroom
  • Tallgrass
  • Waterlily
  • Vines
  • Melons
  • Pumpkin
  • Dead bush
  • Monster rooms
  • Desert well
  • Fallen logs
  • Emerald ore

Tweaks to caves

  • Lava at the bottom of caves
  • Caves in desert and mesa
  • Strongholds
  • Villages
  • Villagers
  • Abandoned mine shafts
  • Flat world generation
  • Limited world generation
  • “New” mob spawning
  • Updated light generation
  • Grass color for different biomes
  • Foliage color for different biomes
  • Water color for swamps

New AI

  • Spiders
  • New leaf rendering
  • Added more spawn eggs in Creative Mode
  • Added immersive mode for Android
  • Added drip particles for water and lava
  • Updated create world screen

Tweaks and bug fixes

  • Correct name for stairs, slabs and spawn eggs
  • Beds no longer gives full health in normal difficulty
  • Smooth lighting added for:
  • Beds
  • Fences
  • Walls
  • Cobwebs
  • Chests
  • Leaves
  • Smooth lighting removed for:
  • Glowstone
  • Glass
  • Jack ‘o’ lanterns
  • Improved performance of TNT
  • Prettier clouds
  • The fog is darker underground

Known Bugs

  • The block highlight flickers (z-fights) when more than 10k blocks distant from spawn
  • Changing the view distance while in a world might crash the game
  • If players walk too far from each other in multiplayer, they can’t see each other

Known bugs requiring attention

  • Multiplayer is a bit fragile. Please test it and report all issues to us!
  • The LevelDB save format + upgrading of old maps. Please report any data corruption!
  • Crashes in general – uncommon and random crashes might still happen

 

If you made it this far, thanks! We’re impressed with your dedication.

Owen – @bopogamel, Johan – @jbernhardsson, and Tommasso – @_tomcc


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Battlefield Hardline: Into the Jungle


Visceral Games brings its critically-acclaimed storytelling swagger to an all new cops and criminal fantasy inspired by some of the most popular TV crime dramas.

For more Battlefield Hardline info: http://www.battlefield.com/hardline


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Battlefield Hardline: Into the Jungle Teaser


Visceral Games brings its critically-acclaimed storytelling swagger to an all new cops and criminal fantasy inspired by some of the most popular TV crime dramas.

For more Battlefield Hardline info: http://www.battlefield.com/hardline


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