What I think of Killer Instinct (Xbox One)

My take on the Killer Instinct Business Model.
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The next generation is changing the face of gaming as we speak. As the industry heads towards a digital model like all other forms of entertainment, the simple trade of buying/selling will evolve over time. Recently, Double Helix games stated that their latest venture into competition fighters, Killer Instinct (KI for short) is going to be a special blend of the “free to play” business model that gives the consumer decision power over how much he or she wants to spend.

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Ken Lobb and Double Helix games are creating a game that is completely free with one free playable character (Jago). The rest including the initial roster of 8 characters (Chief Thunder, Sabrewulf, etc.) are sold at an individual price of $4.99 each. Purchasing the Ultra/Combo Breaker Edition comes with the whole roster, the game itself and a premium DLC for the original Killer Instinct Arcade Game.

A bleak response

As usual, the internet is up in arms against this whole business model. Personally, many gamers are letting their selective perception and pressure from others to jump on the “hate” train. Gamers are asking for the industry to take a leap of faith by promoting innovation and creativity. But with such negative criticism, and without the will to change, how are we promoting innovation as consumers? Gaming logic? I call this gaming “irony.” With a stubborn view on change, we aren’t going to accept the ebbs of change anytime soon.

Instead of identifying the cons that plague the gaming industry, why not focus on the positive vibes? Instead of being pessimistic, we should stay optimistic for where gaming’s headed. For every cloud, there is a silver lining. By offering us the freedom of choice, people can choose how much they want to spend and who they want to play as. Many can’t afford full-priced games. This is a opportunistic way to lighten the load on one’s wallet.

Innovation comes from experimentation

Games like Killer Instinct are still in the experimental phase. I would describe this model as the “grey area” between a full priced video game and the free to play model. It’s an archetype that represents both free to play and full priced games. In this case, it’s an proprietary mix original to Double Helix Games.

I sincerely urge people to learn to embrace the winds of change as reality, the whole landscape and outline of gaming is going to travel further and further away from what we “used to know” or what we called gaming “back in the day.” The future is now and it’s here to stay.


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Author
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K.Goh
Audiophile, gamer and film buff. Just sharing my opinions.