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Why a $150 million Star Wars game is going free

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Electronic Arts shook up the video gaming field last week with a major price change: Star Wars: The Old Republic, one of the most ambitious and expensive multiplayer games ever made, would soon drop its subscription fees.

The move essentially marks the end of the traditional business model for "massively multiplayer" online games, better known as MMOs. Almost every major publisher has now given in and eliminated its monthly fees -- the genre's bread-and-butter business model for the past 15 years -- relying instead on sales of premium content or virtual items to make money.

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jc485731506d ago (Edited 1506d ago )

Square Enix needs to drop its subscription too for both Dragon Quest X and Final Fantasy XIV. I play by my own time.

ATi_Elite1506d ago

cause it's NOT worth $15 a month!

EA has already made their money back plus some from the 3 million plus sales of SWTOR and the first 3 months of 2 million gamers paying $15 a month in subscriptions.

But the Subscription base has fallen GREATLY so EA is going to the popular F2P format to keep the game relevant and making easy money.

But all this doesn't matter cause once Guild Wars 2 gets released SWTOR is DEAD!

Soldierone1506d ago

Because Pay-to-win models make a crap ton of money. Might as well make extra money with people buying the game and subscribing for a while, then go make bank and pure profit off pay-to-win fee's, I mean free-to-play models.....

shutUpAndTakeMyMoney1506d ago (Edited 1506d ago )

Like LoL, Planetside & tf2? free 2 play doesn't = pay to win.. That is an internet myth. But yes pay 2 win games do exist.

Soldierone1506d ago

There was a time when DLC also meant "ADDITIONAL CONTENT" but today it feels like 90 percent of it is "the rest of the game."

Free-to-play will do the exact same thing. Facebook is already there. There will be several GOOD free-to-play games to entice people into supporting the model, and then it will eventually be pay-to-win a majority of the time.

StayStatic1505d ago (Edited 1505d ago )

"pay-to-win a majority of the time"

Get a grip you don't even know what your talking about , such ignorance , expect nothing less from someone who doesn't play or understand them.

" Pay-to-win models make a crap ton of money"

So does cod but you don't have to slap it all up front and feel ripped off by your purchase , don't like a f2p game ? no more micro transactions necessary , don't like cod ? have to spend more money trading it in , SIMPLES !

Soldierone1505d ago

Nice trolling, have nothing better to do today? Please tell me more about my ignorance since your reply failed to bring any fact to the table proving me wrong.

Dont like COD? Cool pay 60 bucks upfront and keep it, take it back and get 30 dollars back if you don't. Dont like F2P COD? Cool pay 60 dollars to get anywhere in the game, then pay another 100 bucks for micro transaction crap if you do happen to like it....Want to compete with the best? Well that'll be 5 dollars for the in-game gun, one dollar per attachment, 1 dollar per perk, 1 dollar per killstreak....oh "but you don't HAVE to pay for this stuff to play the game" yep enjoy your peon basic gun with basic perks and bare bones gameplay then, or wait a month to finally level up....

Like I said (don't worry I understand some people fail to read entire things) not ALL F2P games are bad, but to think certain greedy publishers won't exploit them to the fullest is stupid......

kesvalk1505d ago

go play Aion, completely Free to Play.

also Dota 2, Alien swarm, TF2 and PSO2

GamerToons1506d ago

It really wasn't a surprise to most gamers that follow the mmo market. Also F2P is not the same as pay to win and whoever says that doesn't know crap.

deletingthis346753341505d ago

Actually YOU are the one that doesn't know shit. In F2P MMOs you are as good as the money you spend on it. Ever seen a big behemoth character with the most overpowered weaponry and armour? Chances are he wasted thousands of cash just to build the character. Why spend 8000 hours in pointless grinding when you can just get a fifth job in real life to afford it all? Sounds like a paid to win model to me.

Soldierone1505d ago

I like how everyone defending "F2P" either lists the SAME games over and over again, and never goes outside the box, and never follows up with reasoning to defend it. Some of us are just not blind and can see where F2P WILL go, that doesn't make us idiots....

Do you honestly think developers are creating Free-to-play titles on purpose and changing their entire studio direction into them for no reason at all? They are just there to give you games for free? Its all charity because you enjoy games and their 60 dollar games are not needed? lmao no....Same with the DLC push, as I said, "look its great, we can add on to games, jump on board!" few years later "look we can't even put a full game on a disc, buy the rest on the DLC store!"

aquamala1506d ago

I like paying for content so much more than paying per month, when I pay $15 for a month of MMO I feel like I should only play that game in the month, and I just hate that, I have other games I want to play.

Puddlejumper751506d ago

I have yet to play a pay to play MMO game that didnt offer tons of free content that was added as the game went on...

WoW being a perfect example. I got more free updates/upgrades from them over the years than a lot of companies put into expansions that they charge for.

Menchi1506d ago

Ugh, good thing I didn't bother with the game. There is a distinct lack of quality wen comparing games that are "Free to Play" and monthly subscription.

Yes, it sounds great in theory, and I can see why publishers love it. But the truth is, most cases, games become less supported and content ends becoming "Pay to Win"

It suits shallow, casual, pop in and go MMOs, which, is actually the entire market right now... Can't wait for a deep, content heavy MMO to come out again.

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