December 12, 2012

It places a good picture

NPD releases this survey annually since 2008,¬†and they also show us the trend of the former WoW players’ choice. In 2008 Runescape, a game that is said to be the second most popular online game,¬†gathered 20% of the players who had left WoW, but the number dropped drastically in the following two years to around 10%. Where did they go? They went to DDO! It seems that DDO’s F2P option did work well.

Welcome to Free for All, a weekly column highlighting the world of Free to Play/Freemium games! The new generation of free-to-play games are not only of the same quality as many “standard” MMOs, but they give players a chance to try them out before they ever spend a dime (if they choose to). I am going to try to make sense out of the masses with this column, so wish me luck and thanks for reading!

Freemium is one of those rare hybrid terms that is used to describe some games in the MMO market. Yet, what does it mean? I prefer to use the term “velvet rope”, because it places a good picture in your head as to how the game might work.

I decided to examine what the term means, and what it might say to a potential player. The best way for me to do this is to look at some “freemium” games that not only do it well, but are some of the most successful games out there, regardless of subscription model.

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