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Question on Pricing Models (Freemium vs Non Freemium )for my new Fighting Game

03-21-2012, 06:37 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 182
Question on Pricing Models (Freemium vs Non Freemium )for my new Fighting Game

I am about to release my next ipad game which is an fighting arcade title with math (think of it as Street Fighter meets Arithmetic... sort of : ) )
I would like to get a feeling of what people prefer in terms of the pricing model for my new game. First of, did I make the correct decision to not go with freemium? I have gotten a number of people telling me that they prefer to pay money for a game and get the whole game as opposed to having to pay for additional items and get an incomplete but free game.
What are your thoughts on this?

The way my game works, there are 8 playable characters but you start out with 2 that are unlocked. You then progress through by earning gems in order to unlock the other characters. Now obviously I could have implemented the other way and made it free but offered the other playable characters as unlockable through DLC. I did not do that because I have heard that gamers generally do not like this form of DLC. Do you think this was the more appropriate thing to do?

The game preview is here (it's still waiting for Apple approval):

This is to let you get an idea of what pricing model is appropriate for my new title.
Again, Freemium or non-Freemium? Please let me know about your thoughts! I will keep the comments to this thread in mind as I develop my other future titles.

thanks for reading this thread!

Last edited by jychong; 03-21-2012 at 08:57 PM.
03-21-2012, 08:11 PM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 778
That youtube link just takes me to the videos that I've uploaded, so fix that.

I think Freemium can be absolutely terrible or it can be pretty good. Nimblebit has the freemium model down pretty well. I hated the freemium model of Deadlock because there are tons of items that you would never be able to get just by levelling up. Paymium is even worse. Like Flight Control Rocket, where people can just pay to continue there game and climb the leaderboards. League of Legends for the PC/Mac is a brilliant freemium model.

I take your model to be the League of Legends type freemium model. You get the game free with a few characters then can pay for more, that is a positive freemium approach in my view. Then if you have the added bonus of being able to unlock the other characters just by playing game, while paying for them would just be a time saver, then that is a win win in my book. Good luck with your game!
03-21-2012, 08:59 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 182
Thanks for the very useful feedback and yes, I fixed the link
How about the infinity blade model where they charge for items? Is that something that is appealing or is that something in the wrong direction?

03-21-2012, 09:08 PM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 778
Looks cool. Not really sure how the math aspects come into play though.

I remember being able to unlock all the weapons I wanted in IB just by earning coins playing the game. But its been a while. I do remember in Mage Gauntlet there being a few purchasable items that do useful things, but they are in no way necessary to beat the game. Items like that are fine as IAP imo.

But I'm just one person. I find the majority of people on this forum hate the trend of iOS games leaning heavily on IAPs. I think that viewpoint is caused by bad experiences with games that do IAPs in a really awful way. However, the freemium model is clearly successful on the App Store. Pretty much all the games in the Top Grossing Top 25 chart are freemium games.
03-21-2012, 11:02 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 182
Oh the math is integral to the gameplay. Your creatures have a certain amount of energy needed for attacks. In order to store up the energy, you will need to collect the number tokens and solve simple math equations to do that before you can unleash an attack.

So you bring forth a very interesting point regarding the DLC model. A lot of people are complaining about DLC, yet the top games on the store follow that pricing model. I find it somewhat strange but maybe there is a disconnect somewhere between the general public and more serious gamers in general? I look forward to more views in the forum..

03-22-2012, 01:12 AM
If you built the game to be a paid game then stick with that gameplan and closely monitor your downloads/sales. You can always pivot over to a freemium model as a back-up plan, but make sure you have a design ready and can execute it quickly. You may also need to do some pr/marketing work to get some attention to this change of plans.

From my observations of freemium over the past year, it works best if a game is built from the ground up and designed around freemium. It's definitely possible though to pivot and switch from paid to freemium and generate revenue if you do it smartly.

Case in point: Hungry Shark by Future Games of London http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology...freemium-games

G'luck on your release