Analyst Doug Creutz states that Destiny’s new cosmetic microtransactions could help the game generate ‘hundreds of millions’ of additional revenue per year.
Bungie’s recent decision to add microtransactions to its first-person shooter Destiny was one that was met with a great deal of controversy. Like with many AAA titles, the addition of add-on payments is not a popular move, but one that has become increasingly prominent in recent games.
Beginning next week, Destiny will see the introduction of a new in-game currency called Silver, which will be spent at Tower vendor Tess Everis and can only be redeemed using real money. It’s a relatively small selection to start, but Tess will have 18 emotes available for purchase using Silver.
According to Cowen & Company analyst Doug Creutz, Destiny‘s addition of microtransactions could generate a huge upswing in the game’s revenue, as much as “hundreds of millions” per year. In a note to investors, Creutz states that the ability to purchase Silver has the potential to “broaden the revenue opportunity for what is already a very successful core franchise for Activision.”
Microtransactions are often extremely controversial, to the point where it’s big news when a game like Star Wars Battlefront is announced without them. Unfortunately, they are becoming much more commonplace in paid games and often give players access to advantages that are not available to those who don’t want to pay more. Bungie stresses that its premium currency won’t affect the game in any way and at the moment that statement seems accurate, as emotes do very little gameplay-wise. Creutz adds:
“We also assume that Bungie/Activision will focus on offering cosmetic items and refrain from offering items that could impact game balance, the latter of which we believe could have a negative impact on player satisfaction and engagement. We expect that Activision and Bungie will pursue the microtransaction opportunity wisely.”
While so far Bungie is only offering a handful of emotes as premium purchases, there’s no doubt that there will eventually be a larger variety of items available to purchase with Silver. Given the devotion of the Destiny player base, along with the popular new expansion, The Taken King, it is very likely that there will be a great deal of interest in this additional content, despite it just being cosmetic at present.
The addition of add-on content isn’t bad news though, even to those players who want nothing to do with it. Destiny generating extra revenue may mean that they have the funds to provide more, free content or fix some of the issues they’ve had between the Vanilla players and those with DLC. In fact, Bungie has promised to use the additional funding generated by Silver in order to have more engaging community events that will be announced later this year
Pricing is yet to be announced but Bungie have said that every player will be receiving a small amount of Silver in order to try the new store for themselves. More will be available to purchase from the Xbox Live Marketplace and the PlayStation Store.
Destiny: The Taken King is currently available for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.