If you thought the odd micro-transaction in free to play games was annoying, wait until you play any of EA’s upcoming games – all of them will come equipped with some form of in-game payment system.
EA has already taken flak for including micro-transactions in the single player heavy Dead Space 3, a game that did fine without their inclusion in its previous two iterations.
“The next and much bigger piece [of the business] is microtransactions within games,” said CFO Blake Jorgensen (transcribed by Seeking Alpha). “We’re building into all of our games the ability to pay for things along the way, either to get to a higher level to buy a new character, to buy a truck, a gun, whatever it might be.”
He also suggested that consumers were, “enjoying” this method of gaming. Of course he misses the point entirely. Gamers don’t enjoy buying things in-game, they enjoy playing games that aren’t a grind. If you give them an option to quickly bypass filler material, then they are much more likely to pay to do so – it’s not a question of having fun, it’s minimising annoyance.
Of course though, if people wish to pay for such things, then it’s fine – that doesn’t’ affect my gaming experience. However what could affect mine and yours, is games being tailored to micro-transactions. If more filler is added to make them more necessary, or more pay-to-win scenarios are introduced, that will ruin the games.
But it’s also a problem from the developers perspective. How do you design a game that’s challenging to players that pay nothing and those that pay £100 for a super gun. That latter group won’t have the same experience and most likely will get bored pretty quickly. You’re essentially paying for a cheat code – something that developers used to throw in for free and for fun.
KitGuru Says: Gotta say it guys, this is probably going to rule out me buying any EA games from now on. What about the rest of you?