I hope so
Is the future of gaming more or less free, perhaps funded by advertising or micropayments? A bunch of MMOs have pioneered the way, and now they are being followed by the likes of EA, Sony and id Software, each of which are offering some form of free gaming. But it's not just the big guys. TechRadar talks to a new generation of indie developers who are making names for themselves. 'I make most of my money from sponsors,' says one. 'We're all here because we love making games first and foremost,' says another. But can free games ever make enough money to fund the really ambitious, event games that get the headlines?"
While paid games aren't likely to be on their way out any time soon, more and more developers and publishers are experimenting with cheaper pricing, and the results so far seem positive.
I hope so
Paying for games is not really an issue for me. I'm not saying I'm rich, but what I mean is that I have no problem paying for a game that has provided me with plenty of enjoyment. What really grinds me is that alongside games that are worth the money (Deadly Creatures, Super Mario Galaxy, etc) are some real tripe at the same price. You know full well the amount of effort put in is minimal and they are churned out for quick profit at the expense of consumers.
Free gaming in my eyes is not really going forward but sideways. To me it is likely to remain a small niche, and will grow or shrink due to circumstances. User created games, in my eyes, is more likely to become more mainstream, (like user generated videos e.g. youtube ect..) as the number of budding developers are growing with a continuously thriving market.
Personally, I believe the user should determine the value of a game.
Very unlikely to work, but it would certainly push developers to improve the quality of their games to achieve continuous profitability... (hehehee......)
sounds like a good idea to me. :thumbup:
Personally, I hope free is only the future of SOME gaming. I could see simple games running in browsers and on cell phones being ad supported, but I don't want to have to walk through a city in Left 4 Dead filled with billboards that are still standing and lit promoting the Gillette Mach 4 Turbo razor or whatever.
And micropayments just feel like a shakeup, like with the Xbox 360 Katamari Damacy game that only game with half the levels, sold for $20, and had the other levels up for download at $20. I'd rather just pay $40 and be done with it, and avoid the complication of needing to buy Live Points or whatever to play the game as designed. I get that used game stores are cutting into their profits, but in that case, just offer the whole game for sale via Live. If I owned an Xbox, I'd go that route for convenience and to help the environment by not buying a bunch of plastic boxed in plastic, then wrapped in plastic again, and shipped cross country via truck. It's what I do with Steam whenever I can, and I can't be happier with that system. Plus, if a company does online game purchases right, there's nothing to lose or scratch so long as you remember most of your key account details (credit card number, birthday, security question, username, email...).
There are a few cases where big budget games can have advertising and I'm cool with it. If it's a realistic game set in a modern city (in our world) or in a sports arena, I can understand real life ads downloaded from online, but I don't want them to be intrusive. They shouldn't have the camera be coded to try to fit them in the frame, nor should they send up a bunch of popups on screen trying to get you to go to their website or get their coupon codes. A "Promo" option in the start menu might be okay, though, if I see an ad that interests me.
Then again, so many games take place in worlds where product placement would just be weird (Who'd want to have their stuff scattered around Fallout 3? And what would that do to the game's wit?). Pikmin 2 comes to mind, as the product placement is less cute or enticing than disturbing, implying that the humans have died off and left a legacy of trash.
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