Game players are getting used to being able to try out games for free, and having plenty of options on how and where to play – and what to spend money on. Free-to-play isn’t just one specific business model – the term encompasses a wide variety of models, and in some cases it’s very similar to the old practice of providing free demo versions of a game. The best-performing business models are the ones that are precisely adjusted to fit the nature of the game play, and in so doing deliver an exciting and satisfying experience that keeps players engaged for a long time. That’s what Activision and other traditional publishers are experimenting with now, even on the oldest franchises that seem wedded to the physical retail model. (Electronic Arts is trying out FIFA Online in Asia, it should be noted, and Take-Two is no doubt learning plenty by running Grand Theft Auto Online.)

Evolving Business Models For The Top Game Brands |