Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Western F2P Design Not Good Enough?

If you're looking at the future of the game industry, a large part of it will obviously be the free-to-play (F2P) market. Why? Well, it's already a major source of revenue (at least in Asia), and it's growing rapidly all over the world. This article, while lengthy, is a good overview.

One of the interesting points raised in the article is the fact that Asian games generate a whale of a lot more revenue than Western games. Based on surveys of users, DFC concludes that Western F2P games just don't have as compelling a game design when it comes to getting customers to opening their wallets for additional content. This is a big issue for the future, and it points to the need for marketing and game design to work closely.

It's important to understand the needs of the audience when designing content for F2P games. Game balance is always a delicate thing, and you can easily generate anger if players feel the only way to compete is by buying items. Yes, the whole business model makes designing games even trickier... good news for game design jobs, as long as designers understand how to handle this new element.

The above image is from Dungeons & Dragons Online, which is now F2P. I'm not sure how well things are going with the transition to that business model; it must be even more difficult to switch from a subscription model to F2P, designwise. Once I get a new computer, I have a lot of such games to check out... this old beast is getting a tad slow to deal with today's games.

No comments:

Post a Comment