Recently there were updates for two games released. The first one out the gate was Incursion for The Division, followed by The Whispers of the Old Gods for Hearthstone.
I basically played The Division as a single-player game, going through the story mission alone and didn’t really play anything else until I had gathered all the collectibles and completed all the entries in the quest log. After that there was basically only player-versus-player content left to do, aside from redoing missions on a higher difficulty (which is basically impossible when playing solo). But the PvP aspect of the game didn’t give me any fun, so I just left the game and awaited the next update.
When it arrived it brought new missions and a rework of how the equipment system works. All weapons and gear now carries with it a level. And to be eligible to play the new missions you have to meet the required level and gear level, even though I had already reached the highest character-level possible at the time. So to be able to access the new content one had to grind for loot so as to raise ones gear score. As a solo player this is extremely tedious, and would mean visits to areas where either enemies or other hostile players are more than likely to destroy you without much of a challenge. And so they lost me as a player for The Division, because their new content was too tedious to access for someone that just wants to play the game a little casually. I’m sure they’ll manage without me.
Leading up to the release of Whispers of the Old Gods for Hearthstone it was announced that some previous content, the Naxxramas adventure and Goblins & Gnomes expansion, would have their availability for purchase removed. The cards would still be available for crafting, but you would no longer be able to buy the adventure or booster packs. Having already bought all the adventures and using all my gold to purchase booster packs of card, I started playing more diligently in an effort to gather as much gold as possible to exchange for packs of the disappearing cards.
Getting close to the release I realized that I had no intention of purchasing packs of the new expansion, which made any future endeavor frivolous. There was no point in continuing as I would have to spend too much time just to get a few initial cards of the new expansion, which would leave me too far behind to have any chance in the new meta of the game. So I stopped playing that as well.
Then there was a new announcement. Upon logging in to the game after the release you would automatically receive three packs of cards from the new expansion, along with two subsequent quest that awarded five packs each. Meaning that you could easily collect thirteen packs of the new cards with a little effort. And you were also given a few key cards to the new system, such as the main character of the Whispers of the Old Gods expansion: C’Thun.
This little gesture was enough to change my mind about quitting the game. Making the barrier to entry into the new content lower just by handing out a few samples to get players going is enough motivation to engage me and retain me as a customer. Compared to making me work for the possibility to even access the new content. The outcome is that I’m back into playing Hearthstone with enthusiasm, while I’ve put The Division aside and don’t see myself going back to it.