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Subscription fees for (non-online) games

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As a random thought for a sales model, what if instead of buying the game tou have to pay per month to keep it activated? Assuming people play a game for 6months you could charge $2.50 a month instead of $15 in total. The there''d be more incentive for the team to keep updating and adding to the game? I suspect I can imagine the general views on this but it could be an interesting discussion... (didn''t WinXP do this originally?)

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Seems a bit mean! When people buy a game in a store, for a one off price they see it as buying the game to own. I know that the monthly fee puts a lot of people off MMOG''s and there are plenty of good reasons to charge this way. If you''ve got no reason to structure the game price this way people will fight it. Besides the minimum credit cart processing fee''s will suck a good quantity out of your profit in any system below $15 a month, i expect.

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In fact, in china, the network games are just take this method of selling the games. and this model make up of a lot of millionaire. the people who want to play the game, he must pay some money for a month. For single pc game, this method cann''t be taken, because a lot fo reasons , for example, update speed slow and so on.

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This doesn''t really make any sense for a single player game. You need to make a full game or people wont buy it. If you have already made it then you charge a full price for it; there wouldn''t be any point in having a subscription as that just delays you getting the money for tyhe work already done. If you want to sell additional content that is another issue but you then face the problem that you need to convince people to make a new purchase all the time (or at least not to cancel the current subscription). Given that most add on packs sell about 20% of the original title it may not actually be a great money spinner.

Dan Marchant
Obscure Productions (www.obscure.co.uk)
Game Development & Design consultant

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