If the Beta was released for testing purposes, every player would have access to all the ships. Players who bought higher priced ships would get them at release and other players would need to earn them.
Why would a game intentionally limit the testing of higher priced ships by denying them to most of the player base?
Because they get more money that way? Duh. It is not for testing purposes only, it is also to fund the game. SC differs from other games because it is entirely backer-funded, and thats why even some borderline "money-grabbing" schemes are excused for them, as long as they dont continue into the final version. The more money they get, the better for the players, because it means they can cram more into the game. And as long as there are enough players to buy all the higher ships (which there are), it wont harm the testing efforts since every ship would get tested. Not to mention that there are often free flight weeks of specific ships, so that they do get tested by everyone. I only have a lousy Aurora, yet I have flown many other ships.
Most of the time you test a game, it's for balance purposes. The cheap ship is completely outmatched by the higher priced ones. So how exactly are you testing for balance?
I dont get your point, could you rephrase? Cheap ships should be generally worse than pricier ships, that is what I call balanced.
Why aren't they testing the UEC earning progression?
What is that? PU is not released yet, its hard to test something which doesnt exist yet..
Oh yeah that makes a WORLD of difference. One game it's evil because it's released, one game it's saintly because it's "in development". What a load of horse****.
MWO was also a free game.
Its not horse****. Pay to win is bad because and only because it offers unearned advantages for some players. But there is no obligation to keep gameplay totaly fair during development. Who wins or loses is secondary. The only obligation during development is to test the game and to earn more money for development. If the game is still pay to win after it releases, then I will be angry, but not before.
And do you honestly believe that store is going to go away once it's released?
We will see.