There's a strong sense in most free-to-play
games that the playerbase consists of two people: those who refuse to pay any money unless absolutely necessary, and those who will happily part with their income on a voluntary basis. This is largely true. What's apparently less true is the notion which goes hand-in-hand, that there are a decided minority of players forking over cash for in-game perks. As it turns out, according to a recent survey, 58% of users in free-to-play games have bought items through the in-game store
. On average, users who did pay apparently dropped around $75 over the period of one year.
MMOs have a significantly lower amount in terms of both revenue generated by in-game purchases and average amount spent. Of course, the debate that could be brought up is the question of how much of the money in free-to-play games went toward purchasing content that, in a subscription game, would have been included in the price. Those with an inclination toward math might also note that the monthly price for such a game comes out to just over eight dollars a month, versus the larger and more regular distribution of subscriptions. Still, it starts to raise questions
about how accurate the image of the paying minority in free-to-play
games really is, especially as the business model picks up steam.
[ via Gamasutra