Microsoft Experiementing With Free to Play

Posted on Aug 29 2012 - 12:42pm by Brad Ward

As you probably know, the video game industry is huge, and the latest movement has been the Free to Play business model. That said, many companies have been experimenting with different free to play models, including the creators of Xbox Live, Microsoft. Microsoft will be rolling out its very first Free to Play game on the Xbox 360 later this year.
 The name was dubbed as Happy Wars by Japanese Toylogic, the title will be followed by action-RPG Ascend:New Gods from the widely known Toy Soldiers maker, Signal Studios.

“We’re always looking at ways to push the boundaries of the console and our digital platform,” a Microsoft spokesperson told OXM. “Bringing true free-to-play gaming experiences to Xbox 360 is a natural extension of that.

“With the ongoing success of the model on PC, and the interest from both our consumers and our partners looking to explore this system on console, it simply made sense to deliver this experience through great games that would take advantage of it.

“In this pilot program, Microsoft Studios will support free-to-play gaming with Happy Wars, due out in September, as well as the recently announced game Ascend: New Gods which will ship in several months.

“The free-to-play model and games experiences will be available to all Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers, as many of the games planned will be multiplayer games by nature (an Xbox LIVE Gold subscription is required for multiplayer gaming). The games that use the free-to-play mechanic will leverage the Microsoft Points system.”

It’s not really a surprise that Microsoft is headed this way since Sony is now offering a few free titles for PlayStation Plus members. In fact, I wonder if they even had a choice in the matter so that they could stay pretty competitive and offer the same or better experience than what Sony offers with its PlayStation Plus service. Of course, you should note that in order to access the free titles, you’ll have to have a Xbox Live Gold membership much like you would have to have a PlayStation Plus membership. While many have dubbed it a “scam” or even a “ripoff,” this is actually a nice move. You already get tons of features with the Xbox Live Gold membership, and adding some free playable titles to the mix makes the value for it even better. In a sense, it is Free to Play, but at the same time it isn’t. I guess you could think of it as a monthly subscription to the hit MMO World of Warcraft.

Is anyone excited to see Microsoft headed this way with some of the new games coming out on Xbox Live? I kind of am, seeing that Gold members are getting exclusive content as opposed to the other options is pretty nice. It adds more value to the Gold membership and because of that, I think a lot more players might just upgrade their subscriptions to Gold.

What are your thoughts on this new move by Microsoft? Let us know in the comments below!

source: TG Daily

 

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About the Author

Residing in Eastern Michigan, Brad is a lover of all-things Android. Technology has always been a fascination for Brad, which has led to an interesting in writing. His first phone was the Motorola Atrix 2. He currently works at The Droid Guy and enjoys gaming, weightlifting, reading, creating ideas and watching start ups.

  • alex

    Ive been with xbox for over 10 years and all i have gotten from them is nothing.Its about time they get with the gamers and do free play. They are about collecting their money and that’s it. Its time they start giving back to gamers. I was dumb to think that xbox is better than ps network, but Ive been doing more gaming and more socializing on my Ps3 since i joined the playstation network back in december of 2012, than i have ever in 10 years on xbox live. I would never buy nothing from microsoft ever again. All the dashboards of their products are practically the same and my xbox experince slowly turned into a windows 8 experince ( I love my mac). i love my backgrounds on my ps3, . i can change my name at anytime and use apps at no cost on ps3, rather than xbox live who charges $10 to change your gamertag and $60 if you want to multi-play and be able to use the apps one has subscribe too already. most important to me as a gamer and consumer is that its free multiplayer access on PSN, especially now that everyone is starting to charge for online pass and add-ons but thats another issue that has to be attacked. there is NO freedom on xbox live, but on the playstation network, there isnt only freedom, but you save a whole lot of money there too. I bet that when they do free-play, they are going to raise their price for gold, and when xbox consumers realize the high price for gaming on xbox live, if they havent figured it out yet, then they will do what many have done, change their gaming provider.