Warning – THIS IS A RANT !!!!
I have been reading quite a few blogs and articles, manufactured by some old school gaming journalists who like to beat down the Free2Play industry. (http://www.mmorpg.com/showFeature.cfm/loadFeature/3901/Whats-in-a-Name.html )
Their pet peeve seems to revolve around how Free2Play games are not really Free and ofcourse the hackneyed argument about how Free2Play games are not of the same quality as their surgically altered, plastic encrusted, retail cousins !!!
Free2Play Games are exactly that – Free to Play. You do not require to dish out any cash for a box and then, in some cases, get hit with an additional subscription fee – All this before you can shout WarCraft !! The Free2Play model has slowly yet surely changed the landscape of the video game industry. Last year saw a blood bath in the “traditional” “Cardboard-Plastic” packaged games market as gamers migrated in droves to the Free2Play model. Players can download a game like War Rock (www.gamersfirst.com/warrock) or Sword of the New World (www.gamersfirst.com/swordofthenewworld) , for free, and enjoy hours of fragelicious fun, without reaching for that other piece of plastic. Parents, struggling with an economy in a freakish Gran Turismo Tailspin, do not have to buy a $300 piece of Equipment to get that few hours of peaceful solitude while their kids indulge in some serious role playing !! Free2Play games offer the same escape, the same raw fun and the same indulgence as their bloated Pay to play cousins.
I am surprised the nomenclature of Free2Play gets a lot of the old school journo’s all worked up – Only because these games offer an option for a player to shortcut their level up process by spending a small amount of money via Microtransactions. I also do not see these “previous gen” bloggers giving any credit to the Free2Play industry for developing the offer based payment model which offers further options to gamers to “buy” items and premiums without actually having to pay for them. I do feel that the old school gaming industry still believes that Vinyl offers a more “Warmer” sound than the music you could download from iTunes !! These folks are dangerously poised to become another relic like the very industry which seems to be fading away in the sunset. Free2Play games are the future for this industry; an industry which seems to be struggling in doing what should have been done in the first place – Putting Gamers First !!!