Another week, another free-to-play RPG, right? With the flood of imports from Asia, kids games' popping up like mushrooms in the wake of Club Penguin, and domestic developers with an eye on the social gaming and MMO space ramping up production, it's hard to know which games will maintain any genuine interest.
San Francisco-based startup Sparkplay Media hopes that its game, Earth Eternal, will attract a sizable audience. From characters to gameplay style to audience, CEO Matt Mihaly and team have put a lot of thought into the game, which is currently in closed beta and will soon launch a fully-public open beta.
Sparkplay and Mihaly have their gaming genesis in Iron Realms entertainment, a company which runs microtransaction-supported text MUD games. Mihaly describes the money Iron Realms was able to earn as "modest" because of the game's small reach, but ARPU, conversely, was "insane", supported by a "small... really hardcore" audience.