Modern Warfare 2

Questionable Goals: Monthly Subscription Needed for Modern Warfare 3 DLC?

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# 41Cloverfield Jun 2 2011, 13:44 PM
activision has turned into a nerds oriented company (thx console nerds users)

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# 42Melanchthon Jun 2 2011, 14:55 PM
Black ops was terrible, how they think they can charge for Treyarch's cods monthly is beyond me, I have not been impressed with COD since MW:2....

Just wait guys, it's the only thing they have left short of Blizzard titles making them any money, so if they beat COD into the ground and start to pressure Blizzard, so much that Blizzard leaves, maybe Activision will realize it's not invincible.

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# 43greySkift3kk Jun 2 2011, 15:26 PM
QUOTE(Melanchthon @ Jun 2 2011, 07:55 AM) *

Just wait guys, it's the only thing they have left short of Blizzard titles making them any money, so if they beat COD into the ground and start to pressure Blizzard, so much that Blizzard leaves, maybe Activision will realize it's not invincible.


I can only hope.

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# 44GiDeoN Jun 2 2011, 16:36 PM
QUOTE(Melanchthon @ Jun 2 2011, 14:55 PM) *

Just wait guys, it's the only thing they have left short of Blizzard titles making them any money, so if they beat COD into the ground and start to pressure Blizzard, so much that Blizzard leaves, maybe Activision will realize it's not invincible.


Could happen, console gamers can be a fickle crowd sometimes, PC gamers hopefully have also started to realise what is happening here. However you're forgetting the overall part of Vivendi owning Activision / Blizzard.

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# 45PerfectDeath Jun 2 2011, 18:12 PM
QUOTE(JimRaynor @ May 31 2011, 09:06 AM) *

take that money and spend it on Winnipeg Jets Hockey Tickets!!!!!

Reminds me of the Radio station I sometimes listen to when they talked about Winnipeg buying a US hockey team,
What are they going to call the team, can`t use the Jets.
What does Winnipeg have lots of?
Murder.
The Winnipeg Murder.
Yup, cause you know, a Murder of Crows.
Yup, Winnipeg has lots of crows.
So their mascot would be a crow.
Yea, and it would be holding a chainsaw!

Anyway; On Topic time.

I like to use my combination of business education with my love of good games to view decisions made by developers and their producers.
Activision`s decision is largely based on what the producer wants to do in order to improve their ROI (return on investment) which is something that they are constantly pressured to increase every time they release a game. Now there was a hint dropped before BLOPs was released be a certain video game speculator that Activision was looking into subscription services.
This was purely done because they saw their game (MW1) was being played YEARS after it was released and they were making NO MONEY from it. In fact, they were losing money; the network and servers to support it wasn`t free for them. They would see the data that there are gamers out there playing games for hundreds of days without paying for it.

As a response they decided to have that DLC to help fund the game; but DLC is something with a development cost; not much ROI from that right? So why not just charge people for playing too long? I mean you charge someone $60 for a game; they play it for 600 days. These gamers are only paying like 0.10 cents a day to play! How dare they!

So we can consider our selves somewhat lucky Activision is not actually charging based on your rate of play but your monthly use of it.
Think about what CoD would be like if MW3 used World of Tanks as an example for earning money.
If you want high tier guns but don`t want to grind TDM for a month then you can pay some money and get that gun now.
But wait!
Ammo will cost you extra for higher tier guns...
Also if you die, it cost you in game currency; sure you win some back even if you lose but every time you spawn with good gear it costs more. So you`ll need a lot of in game currency to roll with high tier gear and equipment.

Want a kill streak without the kills?
Money.

you get the drift?

I think Activision is being pretty lenient! =P

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# 46L.A.G Jun 2 2011, 22:04 PM
Black Ops uses, primarily, private servers as does CoD4, funded by players and clans. Thus, the support that the actual developer need put in is minimal. In the case of MW2, the servers were run using someones computer, again, no sustainment costs for Activision.

DLC has a development cost, for sure, but when you charge 11 for each map pack, with two released per game, for a game that sold enough copies to generate a revenue of over a billion dollar and which remain the most played game across both consoles networks, then that is nothing short of a small fortune being brought in in DLC sales. There is no way, in hell, that the development cost of designing five maps per pack approached even 5% of what the sales brought in. Oh, look! Given the legendary piss-poor patching that CoD has as well, there is very little post-release support - MW2 had a single patch that fixed a shotgun. That was it.

Monthly charges as oppose to one of "download and pay" charges are nothing short of a desperate attempt to grab more cash from a malleable market they've already saturated. They're not being lenient, they're being disgustingly and openly greedy.

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# 47GiDeoN Jun 2 2011, 22:24 PM
QUOTE(PerfectDeath @ Jun 2 2011, 18:12 PM) *

This was purely done because they saw their game (MW1) was being played YEARS after it was released and they were making NO MONEY from it. In fact, they were losing money; the network and servers to support it wasn`t free for them.


What network and servers? The ones paid for by consumers? Activision paid nothing for that side of the game. In terms of support the patches were also sponsored by a third party, so again very little outlay on the publisher / developer side of thing. Patch distribution was also done by a third party, and not tied into Steam or services that would have to be paid for.

So no, they basically saw that CoD4 was being played for years afterwards and thought, "how can we make money from these gamers?".

Welcome to MW2 and IWnet and DLC, which was a success as it was "accepted" by gamers (sales indicate this to be a fact). Also increased initial purchase price in case it wasn't accepted, so healthy profits can be maintained, something carried through to other products. Activision games are more expensive than other developers now.

Now they tighten that net in MW3 and add subscription services for stats tracking / competitions, something provided for free previously (as Servers / DLC used to be for many).

Next? Next will be a WoW like subscription model where they make you pay completely for the service, each and every month, to maintain servers (also known as IWnet).

But look at everything you get with that!!

"Hold up, wasn't that free before?" is the question gamers should be asking.

I blame console gamers, specifically Microsoft console gamers who pay for their services, and dlc etc. Sony console gamers get a fairly "free" service by comparison. They've started it, and now as PC gamers we'll slowly get sucked into a fairly vicious business model that provides us services we previously didn't pay for.

Perhaps the publishers forget we have a higher entry cost into PC gaming? It'll destroy mainstream PC gaming as we've known it, only the indie developers can save us. God help us all.

/end doomsaying.

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# 48Cyridius Jun 2 2011, 23:08 PM
QUOTE(L.A.G @ Jun 2 2011, 22:04 PM) *

Black Ops uses, primarily, private servers as does CoD4, funded by players and clans. Thus, the support that the actual developer need put in is minimal. In the case of MW2, the servers were run using someones computer, again, no sustainment costs for Activision.

DLC has a development cost, for sure, but when you charge 11 for each map pack, with two released per game, for a game that sold enough copies to generate a revenue of over a billion dollar and which remain the most played game across both consoles networks, then that is nothing short of a small fortune being brought in in DLC sales. There is no way, in hell, that the development cost of designing five maps per pack approached even 5% of what the sales brought in. Oh, look! Given the legendary piss-poor patching that CoD has as well, there is very little post-release support - MW2 had a single patch that fixed a shotgun. That was it.

Monthly charges as oppose to one of "download and pay" charges are nothing short of a desperate attempt to grab more cash from a malleable market they've already saturated. They're not being lenient, they're being disgustingly and openly greedy.

And given that in MW2 most of the DLC maps were ported CoD4 maps.

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# 49greySkift3kk Jun 3 2011, 04:16 AM
QUOTE(WNxBizzie @ Jun 2 2011, 16:08 PM) *

And given that in MW2 most of the DLC maps were ported CoD4 maps.


The fact that they made so much money by integrating CoD4 into MW2 shows me just how powerful and great CoD4 is.

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# 50greySkift3kk Jun 3 2011, 04:22 AM
QUOTE(AcidSkift3kk @ Jun 2 2011, 21:16 PM) *

The fact that they made so much money by integrating CoD4 into MW2 shows me just how powerful and great CoD4 is.


E - And my last word is 'is' because I still play CoD4.

Wtf? Sorry made a new post instead of editing the original one. wacko.gif

This post has been edited by AcidSkift3kk: Jun 3 2011, 04:23 AM

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# 51Guardian Jun 3 2011, 14:54 PM
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 2 2011, 18:24 PM) *

Perhaps the publishers forget we have a higher entry cost into PC gaming? It'll destroy mainstream PC gaming as we've known it, only the indie developers can save us. God help us all.

/end doomsaying.


I put my faith in Bethesda!

They seem to get it as far as the PC side of gaming goes.

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# 52PerfectDeath Jun 3 2011, 17:50 PM
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 2 2011, 16:24 PM) *

What network and servers? The ones paid for by consumers? Activision paid nothing for that side of the game.

Exactly, I rofled after hearing someone justifying this; the only cost that Activision was really looking at was an opportunity cost. I then knew I wouldn't be playing another CoD even if there were zombies.
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 2 2011, 16:24 PM) *

So no, they basically saw that CoD4 was being played for years afterwards and thought, "how can we make money from these gamers?".

Yup; there is an opportunity cost where they could be making money but they wern't. So now they'll be fixing that.
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 2 2011, 16:24 PM) *

Next? Next will be a WoW like subscription model where they make you pay completely for the service, each and every month, to maintain servers (also known as IWnet).

Subscription models work well for publishers because they get a steady revenue stream that is very predictable; stock holders love this because there is no surge in company wealth when the game is released followed by a decline during the game's life cycle. One thing Activision needs to start considering are their stakeholders (which does include stock holders) and in particular their more critical consumers (the ones who do their research and post on sites like GR.org).
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 2 2011, 16:24 PM) *

I blame console gamers, specifically Microsoft console gamers who pay for their services, and dlc etc. Sony console gamers get a fairly "free" service by comparison. They've started it, and now as PC gamers we'll slowly get sucked into a fairly vicious business model that provides us services we previously didn't pay for.

I'm Console... ]=
Well, I will admit that I have not turned my PS3 on in months; my new laptops plays games so well now!
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 2 2011, 16:24 PM) *

Perhaps the publishers forget we have a higher entry cost into PC gaming? It'll destroy mainstream PC gaming as we've known it, only the indie developers can save us. God help us all.

Well here is the REAL meat of the discussion and why our say has little to do with what Activision gives a shit about. =D
Basically we can categorize the video game consumer market into three groups.
Casual --- Core --- Hardcore (you can call the markets whatever you like btw, this is just what I decided to use for names.)

You see these titles around a lot and they have a relationship; they are like a 3 gradient continuum. Basically Casual and core blend into eachother in the middle and Core and hardcore blend into eachother in their middle. When you apply demographics to these three you will see that the number of people in the casual market is highest and it shrinks as it progresses towards the hardcore. However, the hardcore market invests more (not always monetary investment but also time, research, interest.) I usually refer to investment as involvement. It is not usually the case for casual and core gamers who are not as involved. Even if a core gamer spends 40 hrs a week playing CoD he may not be very invested in the game; he probably doesn't bother studying up on strategy, discussing balance and he probably just hides in the same few corners every game. Hardcore gamers do not have to be playing 40 hrs a week either, they just have to be more invested/involved with the game(s)

Anyway; text blob aside; Activision is looking to sell bulk; you can't sell bulk to a market that is small like the hardcore. The core and casual is where activision makes their money and so they are focusing their efforts there by re-shifting to that market.

Companies have been shifting their Market for some time now; especially nintendo:
http://www.vgcats.com/comics/?strip_id=267

So you guys are right but you use a lot of "colourful" language to describe the core and casual market, something that does not help our market out in the slightest.
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/v...ritical-Miss-21
especially the apocalyptic parts.
=D

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# 53GiDeoN Jun 3 2011, 19:08 PM
QUOTE(PerfectDeath @ Jun 3 2011, 17:50 PM) *

Anyway; text blob aside; Activision is looking to sell bulk; you can't sell bulk to a market that is small like the hardcore. The core and casual is where activision makes their money and so they are focusing their efforts there by re-shifting to that market.


Then Activision should stop grinding existing IPs into the ground and make something along the lines of the SIMS.

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# 54PerfectDeath Jun 4 2011, 03:00 AM
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 3 2011, 13:08 PM) *

Then Activision should stop grinding existing IPs into the ground and make something along the lines of the SIMS.

As a graduate of business (general management) if there is one thing I learned in marketing class it is to stick to what your customers are familiar with.
enterBRANDING

Now lets take a look at the kind of titles we use when talking about games; we refer to the developer and producer. CoD is made by either Infinity Ward or Treyarch. CoD is published by Activision Blizzard. How many Core and Casual gamers recognize a game from its developer vs how many recognize a game based on its Brand Name?
So when a new CoD comes out we look at who made it instead of what its branded as.

That is why no publisher wants to go for a new IP when their primary market won't recognize the developer unless it is clearly marketed.

If Battlefield 3 came out our first question would be to look who developed it; is it DICE? is it Bungie? what if it was Treyarch?
Our reactions would be a lot different from a more casual group who would just see it as another Battlefield game.

Kind of like a BMW being made by Ford or something. We relate the game's IP/Brand to its developer and if the developer/publisher decide to market to a different group then why would they make a new IP when they sell more with the old IP's name?

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# 55GiDeoN Jun 4 2011, 10:22 AM
Have you ever heard of the term BRAND DAMAGE?

You should know this is exactly is what is happening with the CoD series, any other company would look at everything that is happening with the franchise and find a way around damaging the brand as they are currently.

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# 56TimFortres Jun 4 2011, 13:17 PM
I wouldnt call this a money-grab shceme. Remmember the budget of a AAA game these days can go over 150 million plus about as much for advirtising.

So actualy activision made about 600 million in profit that's not so much considering they have to feed blizzard and a dozen other companies it owns.

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# 57Cyridius Jun 4 2011, 14:21 PM
What?
You realize Blizzard's wearing the pants in that family, right?

World of Warcraft - hundreds of millions in revenue profit, Starcraft selling millions of copies, and more. Where CoD has profits in a yearly boom, WoW is a steady revenue of ALOT of money.

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# 58PerfectDeath Jun 4 2011, 17:28 PM
QUOTE(GiDeoN @ Jun 4 2011, 04:22 AM) *

Have you ever heard of the term BRAND DAMAGE?

You should know this is exactly is what is happening with the CoD series, any other company would look at everything that is happening with the franchise and find a way around damaging the brand as they are currently.

Yes, however, they seem to have decided that our damaged view of the CoD brand is not as important as expanding revenue in a more lucrative market.
Our view on the brand is that it is getting damaged; that is not the case for most of the game's buyers. Sure they'll complain about balance issues but that's usually because they had a bad game, they are still the majority that love nuke town to bits (metaphorically).

There are other companies who do the same thing as Activision; there are some who do not. It is why we value the knowledge of knowing who is making the game. As more knowledgeable consumers we can make decisions that can change the industry in our favour. Sure it won't change Activision's mind right away but if BF3 becomes a success from our support and MW3 suffers from their change in direction then there will be change.
You have the knowledge to inform your fellow gamers who would not normally do the research and that sort of information is very effective compared to the millions that Activision will spend to market MW3.

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# 59GiDeoN Jun 4 2011, 17:37 PM
You're possibly right, however there is very little we can do, it comes down to demographics of which we are in the minority. Sadly the casual gamers will lap up MW 2.1.

QUOTE(TimFortres @ Jun 4 2011, 13:17 PM) *

So actualy activision made about 600 million in profit that's not so much considering they have to feed blizzard and a dozen other companies it owns.


Vivendi. Activision has to feed Vivendi.

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# 60PerfectDeath Jun 5 2011, 03:06 AM
ROFL
Just saw a google ad at the bottom just above the quick reply, it says
QUOTE

Call of Duty: Elite
It's Going to Change the Way We Play Multiplayer. View the Trailer!


Google ads sure know where the good places to advertise are! =P

Edit:
Actually, they are all over this forum topic now... @_@
Gawd its everywhere!

This post has been edited by PerfectDeath: Jun 5 2011, 03:07 AM

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