"The problem for publishers is, they’ve stumbled into a vast wellspring of value, but they haven’t yet figured out how to monetize it. Multiplayer modes increase the recurring worth of games. No longer do we expect to play games for a mere 10-20 hours and then never touch them again. We expect them to entertain us for that long, and then to continue to entertain us for months and years afterwards by allowing us to play with our friends online. We expect, in other words, that games provide ever increasing amounts of value.
And yet, up until now, we haven’t been expected to pay for this value. Even though multiplayer vastly increases the worth of a game to consumers, publishers haven’t forced us to pony up for it. But with multiplayer becoming the primary mode of gameplay for many games, this model is probably on its last legs."