Ken Lobb of Microsoft recently spoke with Eurogamer about their upcoming title Killer Instinct, which was shown off at E3 earlier this year.
The supernatural fighting game was previously thought to be a new free to play title on the block, but Lobb described it instead as the worlds most generous demo.
I just want to get as many people playing as I can. Some people are like, ‘oh, free-to-play.’ No. It’s not free-to-play. What is free-to-play? It’s a thing you really can’t ever own at all. Day one, if you want to buy our game, buy it. You own it. There’s no grind for little coins that unlock things later. None of that.
How it works is that you can buy the game for £35/£40 on day one, and get access to Killer Instinct as well as an emulated version of the original game, all six characters, early access to a couple of new DLC characters, and some additional accessories and costumes that you’d otherwise have to pay for.
The other option is to play for free.
On day one you can download the character Jago for free, and he comes with the rest of the game; tutorials, practice mode, online play. The only thing missing is the story mode, but they’ve already confirmed that will be added later without having to pay any extra.
If you pursue this option then you can buy any other characters you want for $5. This way you don’t have to shell out $40 for the full game, and you instead pay for exactly what you want.
It’s an interesting business model, since it priorities what the gamer wants rather than the company’s profits. I know when I play fighting games I tend to find one or two characters I like and stick with them, rarely if ever using the others.
With this kind of payment method you can pick up the game for free to see if you like it or not, and if you do then you’re only paying for exactly what you want.
In my eyes, it’s the perfect business model.