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Why F2P will win in the mainstream

By on February 5, 2013

Two traditional games journalists discussing games on Twitter today. (I mean traditional as in “schooled in the business of games journalism when it was about boxed releases, printed magazines and PR trips”, not traditional as in “blinkered and resistant to change”. Both are online journalists I respect.) Here is the conversation:

Wesley Yin-Poole @wyp100

Why don’t people buy games in shops any more that aren’t Call of Duty or FIFA? I mean, what’s their problem?

Patrick Garratt @patlike

@wyp100 They’re too expensive. This is going to keep happening until people don’t have to risk £50 on “a game”.

Wesley Yin-Poole @wyp100

@patlike They’re all going free-to-play, aren’t they

Patrick Garratt@patlike

@wyp100 They need to be cheaper and downloadable. A lot of this is just the transition away from discs. But yeah, F2P will be massive.

Patrick Garratt @patlike

@wyp100 I’ll pay a tenner for anything I vaguely want. I won’t pay £45, or whatever, on the off-chance I may like something. It’s broken.


I imagine that conversation happening in people’s heads across the globe. If you are anti-F2P and prefer to pay a single price upfront for your content, this is what you are up against. This conversation made it clear to me why F2P is winning the emotional battle in so many people’s heads.

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: