Free to play or free to pay?

17-2-free-to-play

Evan Mahoney

Contributing Writer

MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role playing games) have become one of most predominant sources of entertainment, but also are one of the most addictive as well.

From classic games like Runescape to more modern games like League of Legends, these free-to-play video game genre has dominated the video game world.

Student Russell Perry says free-to-play gaming is going to be the next big movement in the online gaming industry.

“It’s already got a death grip on the Korean gaming industry,” Perry said.

Will this be something soon to trend in America?

People around the world play these online games. According to Riot Games website, League of Legends has more than 15 million people registered to the game with an average of one million players logging on each day. And although they are called “free to play” they are anything but.

Most of these games have an in-game store where players can spend real world money to buy in game items to give them an “edge” over the competition.

The companies offer these stores as a way to entice players into having easier access to better weaponry, new powers, and other items to enhance game play.

Normally this is good, as it allows for players to feel stronger at lower levels, but some companies take advantage of this by creating quests that are impossible to finish without buying an item from their stores.

This can hinder and limit the overall enjoyment of the game.

Perry says some companies have good ideas where the in game item stores are concerned, whereas others have failed miserably.

He also believes gaming companies have found a nice balance between offering unique but not overpowering items and power ups in their stores.

Perry also said that some video game companies take advantage of the free to play model by limiting the type of content offered to the point where the player would be better off playing the demo or trial versions, unless they pay for all of the expansion packs.

“It leaves a bad taste in the mouths of most players I’ve spoken to,” Perry said.

Popular game World of Warcraft recently added a free-to-play model to its game. The free-to-play version allows players to play to level 20 and get a taste of the game. But this taste doesn’t satisfy the avid game players thirst so they will most likely pay for a subscription so that they can go beyond the limitations and fully immerse themselves into the game.

Players will spend hundreds of dollars just so that they can enjoy a game that is originally free in the first place. Or, they will pay for a monthly subscription for a game that could end up consuming their lives.

Perry has spent about $200 on free-to-play video games.

“Some game companies are very good to their players, and I want to pay them for it,” Perry said.

With many popular MMOs switching to free-to-play models with in game item stores and an option to subscribe for total access to in game content, it gives players the multiple choices for their gaming pleasure. And with the amount of free to play games available, there is a game for every genre of player.

The Puyallup Post is the award-winning student news of Pierce College Puyallup in Puyallup, Washington. Copyright The Puyallup Post 2017. Twitter/Instagram @puyalluppost

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Free to play or free to pay?

by Contributing Writer time to read: 2 min
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