Making Money

I have been quiet on the blogging front, so I should appreciate Tobold picking up the “business of games” beat I have favored. He has recent posts explaining that someone has to pay for games and more money attracts more investment. While you personally might prefer to get more game for less money, the MMO gaming niche only gets increased resources when investors see money to be made there. For-profit games need to show a profit.

We have previously discussed the business model Tobold discusses under “Keeping the Lights On.” Players (and consumers generally) are more sensitive to changes in price than in quality or quantity, so over time you get less game in your game and more add-ons, and wow was the Elder Scrolls IV horse armor imbroglio nine years ago already? I actively dislike the nickel-and-dime model and avoid rewarding it, but I have more money now than when I started gaming and I understand why it happens on both the supply and demand sides.

I want good value. I want to reward it. Sometime, we need to sit down and work out how to make sure we are assigning more of our time and money to their best valued uses. I liked Orcs Must Die! more than Dungeon Defenders, but I spent more time on the latter due to the game structures and internal incentives. My Settlers of Catan board was a much better investment than my LotRO lifetime account.

: Zubon

One thought on “Making Money”

  1. Good games make money. It’s simple, but its true. LoL doesn’t force you to pay at any time, but it makes truckloads of cash. Same for CoC (if anything CoC goes out of its way to make you NOT pay). Same for BB. Same for dozens and dozens of games, across all genres.

    This whole “the game needs to force you to pay or it won’t work” thinking is what leads us to the LotRO-ing of games we see today, which are more infomercial than playable experience. Sure, if your game is Farmville-like, you focus more on tricky ways to extract money from dummies than on actually improving your game, but the easy way to avoid that problem as a player is to not play/support bad games.

    Play the good ones, and more often than not the business model won’t be beating you in the face begging for a dollar.

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