Saturday, February 27, 2010

Gaming - At this rate they will soon be paying us to play their games.

I acquired three new PC games in the last last week:
Allods online - Total Cost  €0.00
Peggle Nights - Total Cost €0.00 (Free for signing up to a PopCap passport)
Spellforce Platinum Edition €3.74  (This weeks Steam bargain)

I haven't even mentioned several excellent free flash games I had a look at along the way. The quality of gaming entertainment that can be had on your PC for little or no money at all is bordering on the ridiculous.

By the way I a making a new rule for myself in relation to Steam and other on-line game sales. My new impulse purchase threshold is hereby set at €5. From here on out I will not pay more than this for a game unless I definitely intend playing it within one week of purchase. 

4 comments:

Stabs said...

Being paid is to some extent the premise behind games like Farmville where (I gather) you get points for spamming your friends.

In DDO you accumulate shop points as you complete instances and in Eve and RoM the game's currency is convertible to services normally requiring payment including game time.

You also get a month's free time in sub games like Eve or a free mount in games like WoW or EQ2 for introducing a friend.

As marketing gets more sophisticated it's entirely possible we will get paid (with strings attached) for certain MMO activities. A game with a tank shortage might offer very small incentives or possibly great raid leaders might make a small profit.


And Darkfall is already paying players including some bloggers who recruit with a small payment direct via paypal.

It wouldn't surprise me if eventually people come up with a way for people to play professionally. It happened in Magic: The Gathering.

Cap'n John said...

The wife, the boy and I went to Target on the weekend, and when she got distracted by a rack of clothes we seized our chance and ran for the Toys section.

After a brief Nerf sword duel we wandered down to the video game section but stopped at the PC game section on the way, and the League of Legends box caught our eye, and not just because it was $20.

By the creators of DOTA (whatever that is) based on one of the most popular Warcraft III Mods of all time.

You don't say?

Well it does look interesting. That was when the wife wandered past and we decided that before making the purchase we'd check the game out at home, on-line, first. Maybe there's a demo the boy could play.

We got home and discovered they don't have a demo, because the game is actually F2P.

O_O

Okay, so why are they selling it for $20 in the stores?

Because it's not F2P so much as a microtransaction game, and the $20 box you buy in-store includes $20 (& more) worth of cash shop items.

But you can still play for free if you're so inclined, as most of the cash-shop items are fluff, Skins, vanity items, etc.

That was $20 well saved :)

mbp said...

Hi Stabs, Hi Capn John. All this gratuitous gaming is great but I have to wonder if it can last. Someone has to pay the bill eventually don't they?

Stabs said...

I think we're heading for increased diversification in all aspects of online gaming including business models.

There will be games you can play for free. There probably will be games where a tiny handful of hardcore players play professionally or semi-pro.

And most of all there will be games where very rich people with poor impulse control can sink thousands.

The 10 euros a month for every mmo cartel is the aberration, not the recent rash of F2P titles.