Free MMORPG & Free MMOs

Can Free to Play Work in Other Genres?

Posted on: June 10, 2009

Can Free to Play Work in Other Genres?

Free to play MMORPGs are here to stay. Some nay-sayers still
complain about the poor content and quality of service provided in F2P
games but recent releases like Runes of Magic, Perfect World and Atlantica Online
have shown the world what ‘free’ is capable of. The success of these
titles prove that the micro transaction model can work both in Asia and
here in the West. The only question that I have is why are so many free
to play titles are RPGs?

After RPGs, the next most popular genre of free to play games is FPS
(first person shooter.) Here too the success of the model is self
evident. Nexon’s Combat Arms
has a large playerbase from which it profits by selling slightly more
powerful guns and accessories for a small fee. Almost every major free
to play publisher either FPS game already available or is in the
process of releasing one. IJJI, which already hosts Soldier Front and GunZ:
The Duel is soon to release Huxley, a FPS built on the Unreal 3 engine.
Even a major Western publisher has gotten the message. EA’s Battlefield
Heroes is currently in beta testing and will be released as a
free-to-play shooter.

Before I continue, I should mention that racing games are also well
represented in the free to play space. Realistic racing games like Project Torque and cartoony racers like Tales Runner
and Kart n Crazy are already free to download and play. But what about
action adventure titles or platformers? What I would really like to see
is more experimentation with all genres rather than sticking with the
few tried and true staples. So far it has been Eastern developers doing
most of the innovating in the free to play market and that trend seems
likely to continue. Hopefully the major studios will soon wake up and
the see writing on the wall. How cool would it be if the next major
Ubisoft or Activision Blizzard title was entirely free to play?

By, Erhan Altay


Can Free to Play Work in Other Genres?

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