DICE 2011 Hot Topics - Free vs. Pay Games

Posted: February 10, 2011
DICE 2011 Hot Topics - Free vs. Pay Games
Is there still a market for gamers who pay for their games or should we move towards a free gaming community that charges us for certain in-game items? Min Kim from Nexon and Matt Johnston from PopCap Games debate over this hot topic.

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  • gman2003200311221122

    I think its more comming down to pay to play or play for free, or otherwise Xbox Live VS Playstation Network. Why should you have to go and pay $60 for a new game like the COD series and then turn around and pay to play it online. Playstion has came up with Playstion Plus but everyone doesnt have to get it, it just there for you if you like special disscounts and promos on game downloads or DLC. In my opinion Sony has got it right it aint always about money its about a community of players who can and will enjoy there system and gameplay.

    Posted: February 17, 2011 3:50 AM

    None of them are right !

    Posted: February 15, 2011 8:26 AM
  • slimmer

    The monetary system, o how we love you long time.

    Posted: February 13, 2011 3:55 PM
  • slimmer

    Follow what works for you (gaming companies), gaming is so diverse why feel the need to just follow one or two business models.

    Posted: February 13, 2011 3:41 PM
  • slimmer

    The sound of M$ starting up was priceless ... ha ha ha

    Posted: February 13, 2011 3:39 PM
  • masterojack

    I love free games. At least when the item malls sell things like xp boosts, or cosmetic things, stuff like that. Games such as Shaiya break the game by selling armor/enchanting items from the item mall, basically making he who has more money the unstoppable force. I used to play that game, for about 3 years. Then they started the item mall armors and such, and it's no fun anymore. Currently addicted to Vindictus and LoL, and they do it right. Don't get me wrong, i will pay for a game if i think it's worthwhile.

    Posted: February 12, 2011 9:53 PM
  • Ra3000

    If you are against F2p then I encourage you to try Vindictus. THE best F2p game I've ever played if you don't mind cosmetic limitations like hair styles or the pacing mechanic; which isn't bad unless you have no life and just play mmo's all day.

    Posted: February 11, 2011 9:13 PM
  • darkislandcs

    P2P games are a money leech. First you have to buy the game and it's expansions, then the subscription fee. Quests for higher gear are near impossible and sometimes take ages to complete. All the while you're paying fees to play the game. F2P games like MapleStory aren't quite as good, lack content and do encourage you to spend money to buy gear/items, but at least you know you're guaranteed to get the item you want. I think games like Guild Wars, where you buy the game/expansions and the gameplay is free after that are the best option. You get quality content, quests that are challenging but cost nothing out of pocket if it takes a while to finish them and an economy that allows you to purchase gear with game currency you've earned.

    Posted: February 11, 2011 1:43 PM
  • San_Pato

    I personally would never pay a monthly fee for a game, I got so many monthly fees for my car, phone, etc. that I try to avoid even a few bucks a month monthly fee on anything I don't need. So, I try out different F2P MMO's. Any that have a VIP, Gold, or whatever subscription service, I avoid too. They are just demos in the end. If you really plan on playing it a lot you eventually have to sign up for a subscription.
    So, I play Perfect World (F2P MMO) now a lot. If you are skilled and patient enough, you can get anything you want in the game without spending any real money. The advantage to spending money, is you can sell gold (which is bought with real money) and sell it to people in game for coin. You can then buy good armor and weapons from other players with the coin you get for selling gold. Gold is used to buy mounts, fashion, etc. I will spend like 10 bucks every few months or so to save some time and get a better weapon or something. There are many players that spend a lot of money though. Later, they sell their stuff for less than they paid for it, and that is when people like me buy from them from coin I've saved up from questing/grinding. This is a good model for any F2P MMO, when looking for a good free one, find one that follows the same example, and you will see that it isn't as bad as you might think. It is true though that a good P2P MMO is better overall than a good F2P, but in the next couple of years, I won't be suprised if a F2P one comes out that can be compared to most good P2P. Also, I really do believe that all P2P MMOs are going to try to work in microtransactions in the future anyway, if they aren't already, so then you are paying a monthly fee and still spending money on the same crap you would spend it on in a free one with no additional fees.

    Posted: February 11, 2011 12:50 PM
  • Sesslersprodigy

    Companies are getting so caught up in the money that they are loosing track of what they are really trying to do. Instead of making a good game they are trying to maximize their profit, and some of them aren't even pay to play...yet. Just look at how Activision is sucking the life out of Call of Duty. Personally, I only buy games that are not pay to play because I don't see why I should have to pay for the internet connection, pay for connection to Xbox (if you have one), then pay for a game, AND ON TOP OF THAT PAY A MONTHLY FEE. Games today are bringing in so much revenue that companies should just be making good games that appeal to the masses, and not trying to bleed us out of the already costly 60 dollars it takes to buy the game in the first place. Lets not get to far ahead of ourselves.

    Posted: February 11, 2011 12:10 PM
  • Gilded

    There are many benefits to F2P, some major ones were touched upon at the end of this. There is no issue of piracy and there is no transaction needed for distribution. With a subscription service the player feels an obligation to play the game and almost always feel like they are not getting the most out of their money. F2P allows the option: people either have time or they have money.

    Most successful shops that I've experienced are based off of either dlc, cosmetic items, convenience items, or some combination of the three. In LoL a player can buy a new champion to play with, in mabinogi a player might buy clothing to customize their individual character within the game, and in LotRO a player might get a mount to get around faster.

    F2P also allows special weight to be given to certain aspects of a game. Say in an MMORPG you only get five stat resets when you start and any extra resets would cost actual money to purchase. This makes building your character have more weight to it because you can't just switch your stats on a whim, you actually have to consider the implications of what you do.

    Posted: February 11, 2011 8:29 AM

    Just by reading the brief description to Matt Johnstons' rebuttal of the posted video alone calls for a response. His argument that free-to-play games takes the player out of the gaming experience because of the burdens of microtransactions. This is a valid point which then suggests that subscription based models make the games more intriguing, thus, influences the player to be more involved with the product? In terms of obligations, yes. In terms of enjoyability, not so much. F2P games allows the player to have choice, whereas with subscription based modeled games there is a mandatory payment to play online, obviously.

    Personally, I'd rather be given choices to my games where I pick which content would be worth my money instead of being forced into something I really don't want to do. In the long run F2P is more expensive. That's if the player buys every little thing that is released for that particular game. Add in choice and suddenly microtransactions don't seem so bad.

    Posted: February 11, 2011 4:31 AM
  • eattheonion

    Why don't they ever mention Mabinogi?

    Posted: February 10, 2011 10:10 PM
  • hoof_hearted4

    *posting before i wached it*
    its a tough call. there are a lot of good games out there for free. but there are also a lot of good games obviously that you pay for. im not going to say that the games you pay for are always better then free games, but more often then not, the quality is better, graphics, gameplay, content, etc. however, most FTP games are mmo type meaning there is endless content and most are constantly supported with patches and new content. what sucks is when you pay for a game and it ends up sucking. or when your paying roughly $60 per game. i honestly thing games need to be dropped down to $40. thats a fair price, where if its a game you didnt like or just an average game you didnt spend a paycheck on it. a lot of free games are also games where its FTP but you need to spend money when you wanna buy something like armor, or better content or the FTP is only half of the game whereas the whole game costs something. something like Champions Online where you can play the game without paying, but you get a lot more of the game by subscribing or more stuff by buying packages. the other thing is all the FTP games are on PC where anyone can make a game and put it up on the internet and have advertising pay the way. consoles are different. Sony/Microsoft/Nintendo are all responsible for the games. ppl cant just make a game and play it on their console. there is no advertising to help or anything. so its a completely different market. once they mix the console with the internet, you might see something like this where you could play console games or games from the internet. the new system The Cloud is heading in this direction somewhat.

    Posted: February 10, 2011 9:19 PM