Some large scale MMOs are launching with too little content and asking for too much financial commitment from players, says the CEO of payment firm that has worked with the creators of MMOs such as Star Trek Online, Rift, and Champions Online.
Gene Hoffman, CEO of the payment firm Vindicia, says that some MMOs are launching with the bare minimum content while asking their customers for too much money.
"Look, some of these MMOs are launching and they're really bad," says Hoffman in an interview with GamesIndustry.biz.
"You don't want to say that too loudly to them, but seriously, these guys need to do a lot more content before they launch, so why not price it that way?"
Hoffman suggests that some MMOs should consider launching as paid betas, asking for a small upfront investment, and then giving players more content as it is added to the game, while offering freemium content on top.
"Why not do a paid beta initially, and tell people: it's pretty damn good and you'll be able to play, but it's not done and we're not going to fill the whole world until three months from now, but sign up today for 10 bucks a month and you know what, we'll throw in the actual release and just keep it going when we come out of beta."
This year has seen MMORPGS make a significant shift towards the free-to-play model, with players signing up for free access to the game and paying for access to extra content and superficial upgrades. The success of games like Minecraft also support Hoffman's argument, with millions of customers buying the early build of the game and later gaining access to the completed version.
With the direction that MMOs are heading, do you think that this will soon be the end of premium subscription games? Will World of Warcraft be the last game standing while everyone else shifts to free-to-play? Or do you still see room for premium MMOs? Let us know what you think!