Just how many models have we had, anyway!? I know this is a new industry, but damn!
Anyone have any favorites?
- Pay everything up front.
- Pay very little up front but, as soon as you lose, it's game over. (Arcade style.)
- Shareware: the game is free, but you are asked to pay the developers directly. (Sometimes, they might ask you to pay a charity of some kind instead.)
- Cripple-ware: the game is free to start, but you need to pay to get past a certain point, save your game, or play for longer than a certain amount of time. After that, you have to pay the developers, who then give you a code to fully enable the game. (Doom used this method to great success.)
- DLC: Pay for the main game up front. For a little extra, we can add a bit more - pick and choose the options you want to buy.
- Expand+DLC: Here's your main game. For quite a bit extra, we'll add significantly to the game over the years. Plus, you can get little DLCs as well. Both are optional. (Strategy games and Egosoft's X series have used this a lot.)
- Pay as you play: The game is free, you'll be paying some amount per hour. That money will (at least partially) be used to make the game better. I haven't seen this one used in ages, but it was common back in the days of CompuServer, Americal Online, and GEnie.
- Pay as you play but cheaper for the skilled: The arcade model but, instead of being game over when you lose, you can pump in a few more quarters and keep going.
- Monthly Subscription: Play as much as you like, paying some amount per month. The initial game could be free, extra cheap, or full price (with one month free service).
- Monthly Subscription + DLC/Expansions: Same as monthly subscriptions, but you can pay more for small things (probably nothing that makes you stronger). Every year or two, there will be a big expansion that costs quite a bit but is optional to buy. Theoretically, anyway - kinda rough to be stuck back in the same old areas while all your friends rush off to the new digs.
- Free to play: The game costs nothing. Any expansions they do cost nothing. Some DLC may even be free. However, they often come close to being cripple-ware, where you must pay something to keep making progress. DLC that costs money will sometimes give the player an advantage over other players (though this is frowned upon in many of the bigger operations). As people continuing to play is the sole source of income, programs work really hard to get you to cough up a little cash as you go.
- Advertisement Game: The game is free. However, the game is as much an advertisement as a game. (The only game I can remember that was successful was the America's Army games.)
- Freeware: It won't cost you anything to play the whole thing. No advertisements, no guilt trips, no cash.
- A cut of the take: Casinos have gone online with their games, so their method of making money came along with them.
- Advertisements in game: a free game but, like a TV or radio station, you'll have advertisements show up now and then.
- Data collection: a free game, but it gathers a whole bunch of data about you - presumably so they can give you targeted advertising.
- Bulk Monthly Subscription: game is free and you pay per month, however, your subscription covers multiple games. (E.g. GamePass)
- Game given away free as part of some promotion. It might be from a store (GOG), a contest from PC Gamer, or the publisher. Afterward, the game costs money again.
Anyone have any favorites?