Free-to-Play Games Were Responsible for 80% of 2018's Digital Game Revenues

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Jan 19, 2019.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    The free-to-play model is working out extremely well for game developers, particularly in Asian territories. According to the latest numbers from Nielsen’s SuperData, 2018 was the biggest year for digital games and interactive entertainment due to F2P games, which earned 80% of the revenue. While traditional titles still performed well, F2P led the race with $87.84 billion in earnings.

    The digital market pulled in $109.8 billion throughout 2018, up a strong 11% year-over-year and sending clear signals to publishers like EA, Activision-Blizzard, Ubisoft, Tencent and Nexon that their live service plans are working. Asian territories fueled these billions and the region generated the lion's share of earnings for the segment. Conversely, areas like North America and Europe prefer bigger buy-to-play games like Red Dead Redemption 2, PUBG, and Black Ops 4.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2019
  2. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Finally a reason for more paytowin games.

    This isn't an ominous sign at all.
     
  3. alamox

    alamox Gawd

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    rumors are bethesda is gearing up to make fallout76 f2p, as copies dries up from shops.
     
  4. vegeta535

    vegeta535 2[H]4U

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    You mean copies are thrown in a dumpster? I sure as hope no one is still buying this garbage even heavily discounted.
     
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  5. M76

    M76 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I'm pretty sure I never paid a single cent for a F2P game ever.

    Just because chicken is a larger net business doesn't mean everyone should just kill off the cattle and start breeding chicks.
     
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  6. vegeta535

    vegeta535 2[H]4U

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    This is why we can't have nice things.
     
  7. skydriver

    skydriver Limp Gawd

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    TLDR I think we can have can both

    All I’m saying is Path of Exile is free to play and is pretty awesome, can’t imagine that game under a standalone model.

    I guess I like to think the market could/would sustain all game models to make money in some form, screw the triple As if it’s not worth their time, will still get content.
     
  8. Templar_X

    Templar_X n00b

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    Path of Exile is indeed a f2p game done right.
    I spent some time having fun so I rewarded the devs for it. They've put out some interesting and fun content over the years, I'm happy to encourage that.
     
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  9. JR688755

    JR688755 n00b

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    Microtransactions = death of gaming. I’m glad I got to grow up during the golden ages of gaming.
     
  10. Lakados

    Lakados [H]ard|Gawd

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    While I partially agree in some ways I don’t see it as overly bad when done nicely. I mean some companies will royally bend you over with it making it completely P2W while others can get you to earn all that content with play time which is also good. If they like the game and it is good some will play day in day out and grind it for “free” but that gives the game a strong player base. Others will pay a few $ here and there to keep things interesting and then there are the select few who will pay out the ass for anything under the sun. But with most online games it’s all about player count the more the better. The bigger the audience the more chances to monetize some of them and the more people that play the more that will join in. Until somebody inevitably makes a similar but slightly better game and gradually steals the player base but that’s how it goes.
     
  11. XvMMvX

    XvMMvX [H]ard|Gawd

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    Fortnite broke the F2P model. It is perfect and pure marketing genius. You get to play and do everything... you just don’t get to even choose your avatar. The game is so fun that people through some cash at cosmetics.

    All cosmetic/season pass.
     
  12. Dregan73

    Dregan73 Limp Gawd

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    fuck Microtransactions and fuck the people that pay for it, fuck day 1 Paid DLC, and fuck Loot boxes, fuck pay walls, fuck DRM, fuck digital deluxe editions , fuck single player games that requires a internet connection to play, fuck all that shit, if there is any other fuckery i missed in todays gaming then fuck it to, at least there some company's still around that do the right thing like cd project red.
    oh yea and fuck EA almost forgot about them
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2019
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  13. GoldenTiger

    GoldenTiger [H]ard as it Gets

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    Would you like some soap in your mouth?
     
  14. oldmanbal

    oldmanbal [H]ard|Gawd

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    I got hooked on destiny 2 when it was given away in November now I've bought the expansion and annual pass.

    Fortnight is probably making double digit % of all gaming revenue right now or something ridiculous and that's just 1 game that went f2p.

    The model works for a lot of games, I have no problem with it. However I also appreciate a long quality gaming experience for role playing games and other content. I'm rarely interested in content locked behind paywalls.
     
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  15. DukenukemX

    DukenukemX [H]ardness Supreme

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    So essentially poor areas like free things and areas with money like good games.
     
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  16. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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  17. focbde

    focbde Gawd

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    Thank you for your intelligent, measured and insightful contribution to the conversation.

    Did you just discover swearing or something? I think you'd get on great with my 8 year old nephew currently.
     
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  18. joobjoob

    joobjoob Gawd

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    Remeber when my first trip to the american west where gambling is common at gas stations and it is called "video games."

    As a kid obsessed with arcade versions of games like operation wolf, afterburner, and outrun you can imagine my disappointment.

    The irony that under my watch my beloved freedom and imagination in video games has been reduced to those same cha-ching cha-ching skinner boxs is shakesperian in its tragedy.

    Hey at least I still have my freedom to collect rainwater and openly voice political dissent from the establishments propoganda narratives .... oh wait.....
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2019
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  19. Flogger23m

    Flogger23m [H]ardForum Junkie

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    No surprising free to play is popular in Asia. When you live in a cardboard box and everything is so expensive/regulated there isn't much to do outside of video games & electronics.
     
  20. Eshelmen

    Eshelmen [H]ardness Supreme

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    Ah, you know something. If games can actually be released as F2P but not have to pay for the content ever, and only cosmetics is the way to make money for the devs, so be it.

    Release a completed F2P game and I'll support it with what I think it should get. Fine with me.

    If cosmetics are what's hot right now, so what?

    If your needs are to buy a shirt in game for 10 bucks every couple days, and it's supporting my ability to not have to pay any thing at all, while being able to play everything that you are, hats off to that system.

    Tired of wasting 60 bucks on crap and then additional for everything else(dead dlcs, skins, etc)
     
  21. Dodge245

    Dodge245 Limp Gawd

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    Path of exiles, Fortnite and Warframe, team fortress are all f2p done correctly.

    I still want my big single player games though, and don't mind paying for them.
     
  22. T_A

    T_A Limp Gawd

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    First thing , the definition of F2P is kind of misleading,
    For example i play DCS (a combat flight sim) which is technically F2P , but it only comes with 1 map and 1 plane , if you want more you need to buy, its not about pay to win , its the same as buying addons from 3rd party for MS Flight Sim

    The other thing - games like Fortnite are truly F2P , you can be the best player in the world and be on a levelled playing field with anyone without having to spend a single dime, there is no pay to win here also

    so i would not write off "F2P" as evil or the end of gaming as we know it.
     
  23. Oldmodder

    Oldmodder Gawd

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    I am quite literate, so how someone can make money ( and lots of it ) on games that are "free to play" are beyond my comprehension.
    What ever the price or not, i am still waiting for a FPS game worth playing, and its been that way for a decade or so.

    But what seem to happen in gaming nowadays seem to result in that even if someone made a interesting game for me and i got it, it would probably only be weeks before the DVD / CD became a long range target for my airgun.

    If what i seem to understand free to play mean, then really that's a bogus name that should not be used in relation to such games, it should maybe be called "free to be addicted and then mined for your money" instead.
    Which are common pusher procedures, so when its all said and done such games should be called "pusher games", cuz that what they do, introduce you to something free, and then when you are hooked, its pay up sucker time.

    And IMO pushers are low life parasites that should be shot on sight.
     
  24. Tsumi

    Tsumi [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Well, the Chinese government did block most AAA games and have been approving only mobile F2P games so far, though only recent. There is also a culture for the elites of being on top and doing whatever it takes to stay there.
     
  25. M76

    M76 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    It's all the same. It doesn't matter if they put progression or content behind a paywall, the concept is the same. Lure the unsuspecting player in, then make them continuously pay, instead of paying one sum up-front for something concrete.

    I'm not going to pay for either. I used to, but I realized how exploitative it is. So fuck microtransactions, and fuck studios that want to build their market strategy around those.
     
  26. XvMMvX

    XvMMvX [H]ard|Gawd

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    It is not a nefarious as you make it sound. They are not forcing you to buy anything. The model of charging X for a game and continuously supporting it or get shit on by the internet was not sustainable.

    Multiplayer gaming IS a service and the market has pivoted to a new model to support it. F2P seems to be that model and Fortnite, PoE, etc have perfected that model.

    Not sure were you have been the last decade... BF3, BF4, multiple version of BLOPS. There have been several.
     
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  27. JR688755

    JR688755 n00b

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    I miss the days where you bought a game once and were able to unlock the “cool” stuff by accomplishing rare feats, not to be confused with “grinding”.

    Almost every game now has an element of grinding - and F2P games use this tactic to put up pay walls that greatly reduce the amount of grinding.

    This may appease some casual players, but I find it incredibly boring. I remember having to beat levels in record times in order to unlock something - that made it incredibly exciting and suspenseful.
     
  28. DukenukemX

    DukenukemX [H]ardness Supreme

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    What I've learned from today's World of Warcraft developers is that they don't have much knowledge in game development but they do have degrees in physiology. That's why most games today from Blizzard tries to exploit gamers minds than actually making good games. People have problems paying an upfront amount of $60, but once they're addicted they don't see a problem with $5 or $10 here and there. People are really bad with math, hence why lots of people use the lottery and banks keep increasing the pricing of homes and cars. You don't care about monthly fees or micro-transactions but big fees do make you upset. In the minds of these people $5 is nothing compared to 20 hours worth of grinding. The developers know this and exploit it in their game designs.

    This business model works cause it specifically aims at children or uneducated people like those in China. It doesn't work as well as it does in the west, mostly cause we have experience. This is why in the holiday of 2018 that so many AAA game studios got so much backlash because of their obsession with micro-transactions. It literally took until a few months ago before the industry found out that gamers really do hate grindy games with micro-transactions.

    The excuse now is Fortnite and Asian market, cause these are examples where these micro-transaction free to play markets work. So of course everyone is now trying to penetrate that market, even though they don't realize that market is saturated and likely to be a short lived fad. People still want good quality games that are cheap and don't have micro-transactions, even the Fortnite players want this.
     
  29. Soulmetzger

    Soulmetzger [H]ard|Gawd

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    Just as long as a F2P game is not P2W i am all about it.
     
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  30. Dregan73

    Dregan73 Limp Gawd

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    There is no such thing as swearing, only people that are offended by it


     
  31. MV75

    MV75 [H]ard|Gawd

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    F2P works in Asia because;

    1; It's free to play.
    2; They'll pay small amounts to "get an advantage / ahead" of everyone else.

    It's just how Asians are.
     
  32. focbde

    focbde Gawd

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    You assume I was offended. I just thought it was sad and pointless.