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EverQuest Next Dev: MMO Fans Should Want Free-To-Play

One developer says free-to-play is something MMO aficionados should embrace.

Gamers commonly disparage the free-to-play model, but EverQuest franchise development director David Georgeson says it works well for the MMO realm.

In speaking to IGN, Georgeson said free-to-play forces developers to create compelling games; if they fail in this task, gamers will leave and nobody makes any money. That's why he says "...there's nothing wrong with the subscription model" and in fact, those who love their Massively Multiplayer Online experience should want developers to utilize free-to-play.

"I think that free-to-play is the way that gamers should want their MMOs to be, and the reason I think that is that if we don't do a really good job and we don’t entertain the player, we don't make a dime."

He went a step further, comparing MMO developers to street performers, in that if they don't impress the crowd, they don't make a dime. He says paying $60 up front is a "...gamble on whether the game is good or not," and you can't get that money back. This is why free-to-play works: You can test it out and if the designers did their jobs well, you'll reward them by purchasing stuff.

"With free-to-play you get to go in, take a look at it, and find out. It's entirely our responsibility to make sure you're entertained. That's the way things should be in my opinion with free-to-play."

Free-to-play is definitely more popular than ever, and now it sounds like EverQuest Next is going that route as well. Do you approve? I understand the concept and on the surface, it makes sense. But beneath the surface is something potentially more sinister...

Published Apr. 3rd 2014
  • Elijah Beahm
    Featured Columnist
    I'm of a similar mind to your assessment. I agree with the concept and what they are aiming for, but also have seen how free to play can destroy some games if left unchecked. Roblox really went down hill when they started doing partnerships and insane pricing schemes. Still, some games like Warframe, Loadout, TF2, and Vindictus pan out well in the end.

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