I happily pay for video games. You might, too. But so many people enjoy the increasingly popular free-to-play model of video games. So many people don't pay to play. Is gaming going to be reaching a moment when many, many potential gamers just don't want to pay.
There is no common price tag for great video games anymore. The year's best ranged from free to $US60. That initial $US0 tag is becoming more popular and is affixed to a model of gaming that cajoles players to pay more for more content or to make progress more quickly or more easily. The year saw a rise in games like this and growing momentum for so-called free-to-play games. That is the money-related topic worth considering for all gamers and game critics out there -- not how much the gaming industry made, but how much each game should cost and whether gamers in the years to come will still have a zeal to pay for them.
The sales of the $US60 GTA V this past fall certainly support the argument that people will still happily pay for video games. But when I look at all the free games doing so well on iTunes and when I see the stats showing the millions of people who play the likes of League of Legends and DOTA 2 and so many other free or "free" games, I wonder...
When do we reach a point when it becomes weirder to be one of those people who pays to play than to be one of those who does not?