I’m a binge viewer. There, I said it. I love watching a whole season of episodes from TV shows in one weekend.
It’s an interesting topic in itself, from a number of angles, but it got me thinking about how I would feel if a single player game were releases in chapters like a TV show.
Let me clarify a few points:
1. No, I’m not talking about episodes in the sense of Episode One and Two.
2. I’m not even thinking specifically of a Half-Life game.
Imagine a developer announced the release of a game. You could get each chapter on a weekly basis BUT there was some sort of advertising built in. Whether that be product placement, short ads (like cut scenes) or some other form, it’s not important. Let’s also for argument sake say each chapter was $7 and there were 10 chapters.
Now, another option would be for you to purchase the full game, with no advertising for $100.
Which would you prefer?
I accept that there a few issues involved; cost, ability to play all and advertising, but I’m interested in whether having the whole game to play when you want is more important than the other two. I added advertising to the first option because there probably needs to be a reason for the discount, unless you accept that the price of the game is what the chapters are worth and the full game includes a premium for getting it all at once.
Of course, you could buy each chapter and collect them until you have the full game, but could you wait that long?
I’m very interested to hear your thoughts on this.
If there would be advertisement build into it, I would expect it to be completely free :)!
I’d go for Option C – passing on this hypothetical developer’s game because I think their strategy is stupid. 😛
I voted for Option B, but now that I think about it, if Option A was a LOT cheaper, I’d choose it instead. This really goes back to your TV example. If a TV show was available On Demand (or a similar streaming-with-ads service) or Blu-Ray, chances are I would side with On Demand because I usually have no desire to watch an episode multiple times, and I can deal with the ads when I watch it.
The two things that make your example a bit odd, however:
1. This hypothetical compilation is released before the episodes are. So, if you were a weekly gamer, you could easily have the whole thing spoiled for you. This is akin to saying I could buy a whole season of a TV show before it’s been aired.
2. Most services like On Demand are either free or have a nominal fee attached to them. They aren’t priced the same as a Blu-Ray, and likewise, outside of a few TV shows (Star Trek comes to mind), not many Blu-Rays are priced significantly higher than others.
I would definitely pass on anything that I both pay for AND has advertising in it. When a game is released and you buy it, it better not have any overt ads – I don ‘t mean product placement, that’s bonus to them. But something that interrupts the game to tell me to buy other crap? Nope. Nope and I would then tell everyone I knew, not to buy it or patronize that publisher until it’s changed. If they have a product worth playing, it will be bought on its own value.
I wouldn’t buy a 100$ game. Pretty much outright. No game …. okay I have to take that back: City of Heroes was worth an infinite amount to me. But that’s not a single player game, that was an MMO with a subscription fee.
That’s partly why I am disgusted with the ‘subscription based single player’ model that IS coming out. These Telltale games and other such things – they might be nice games and all but it’s … I’m not watching goddamn Netflix. I’m playing a VIDEO GAME. Give me the game, take my money, leave it at that. I’m not in it for the next installment, I’m in it for the game to be start to finish.
I’m definitely a binge player. So it would drive me crazy to have to wait for each chapter. Given the 2 choices I would pay a little more to get the content faster. Of course, I actually don’t expect to pay for anything with ads in it. That kind of defeats the purpose.
Without the ads, and assuming they’d actually deliver on time (Telltale, I’m looking at you here), I’d prefer to pay less for it in episodes. I’m patient enough to wait.
I’d even be okay with ads, as long as they’re not intrusive and the price is low enough. Props in the levels being brand name products (Coca-Cola on a table instead of just a “soda can”) would be fine by me. In-game billboards being advertisements for real products instead of being blank or joke ads would be fine (assuming it’s not horribly out of place). Anything that takes me out of the game isn’t fine. I’d rather pay more than have an ad in the middle of a cutscene (or a banner in my HUD) ruin my immersion.
Some people think paying for something and then having advertising on top of that is wrong, but I’m already used to the concept from watching cable.
Gosh!! full game please; the reset is bull**it…