I think it's a good idea, but it wouldn't work like that. Because everyone would set their server to Premium only and you wouldn't have a chance to really play without paying for it. Maybe there should be a limit like 20 Servers maximum Premium only at one time?
I think you can already do this with spawn prisons; just let only skinned players in. Automating it won't change whether or not it can be done. Besides, it's his server; he can let whoever he pleases in. Don't tell him how to run it - go make your own if you want to run things your way.
If this were implemented, a server label would need to be integral. Also, this wouldn't stop griefers.
This would inspire alot of hate against the 'Free-ware' as sandbox will always remain free, and should remain like this. If you got a problem with people joining, or trust issues, do your own thing or set it to private.
Anyone who disagrees with having paid-only public servers is free to make their own open-to-all server. You don't have to go to a premium-only server. If no one can agree on anything else, let them at least acknowledge that a server owner has the right to run his server however he pleases. If someone wants a public premium-only, more power to them.
I thought it was a good idea but everyone has to fight over it so now it's a sucky idea =b
I wanted premium only because I like having skilled players join my server (of course I assume those who buy the game like it enough and have plenty of experience to be skilled..)
What I don't want joining my server is munchers, griefers, and noobs who have not bought the game yet.
And I don't want to sit there with an unbreakable cube governing who gets out and who doesn't.
Once the game hits beta, there will be alot less griefers who will have paid to play.
However to be frank, yes it might "alienate" the free players, but the free players will always have access to the free servers. When this game goes paid alot of Paying Server Admins will only want Paying members to join their server and that is their choice.
Also more importantly "private" servers are NOT infallible. Word of mouth will spread your server link, will get its address posted on forums etc amd thus it goes from Private to public.
Setting the server to premium only is the next step tbh. The ultimate step for private servers is passwording. Which i think is quite a while off yet.