id Software’s creative director Tim Willits reveals that the developer hasn’t yet decided whether multiplayer shooter Quake Champions will be free to play or not.
A surprise announcement during Bethesda’s press conference at E3 2016, Quake Champions is a first-person arena shooter that’s headed to PC in 2017. While the game, which is the first main entry into the Quake series since 2005’s Quake 4, already had fans ready to dive in, the recently revealed gameplay trailer for the title has also set hype levels skyrocketing. However, it’s currently unclear how much these eager fans will have to fork out for the game, as developer id Software still hasn’t decided whether or not it will be free to play.
In an interview with PC Gamer, id Software’s creative director Tim Willits revealed that deciding whether or not Quake Champions will be free to play has “definitely” been a “really hard problem” for the developer, as id is “trying to figure out exactly what people want more of, and how they perceive it.” Willits also explained that the indecision on the game’s business model isn’t him being “cagey” either, and he added that “it’s not like we know and just aren’t trying to tell anybody, we don’t know and we’re still trying to figure this out.”
The admission that id is playing it safe with Quake Champions’ business model, in trying to see what gamers want, is unsurprising. On the one hand, free to play business models can make games more accessible as players don’t have to invest any money to see if they like a game or not. With that in mind, the (potential) success of the F2P model is evidenced by the fact that MOBAs are the PC’s fastest growing market, led by free to play MOBA giants, League of Legends and DOTA 2. However, free to play monetization strategies also take a lot of work, with ARK: Survival Evolved ditching free to play because of this.
On the other hand, Quake Champions may be offered as a premium title that costs between $40-60 to play. While the paid entry could turn away some gamers who are reluctant to pay such a high price to figure out whether or not they will enjoy the game or not, it has worked out well for Blizzard’s multiplayer shooter, Overwatch.
Although an Overwatch free trial may soon be introduced, the premium priced game has already had huge success, with 7 million people playing in its first week. Blizzard also makes additional money through microtransactions as well, so perhaps Quake Champions will feature something similar.
Quake Champions will go into beta in 2017, with a release date coming later in the year.
Source: PC Gamer