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 Blizzard's Rob Pardo:SP Games are Going Extinct - interview
(hx) 02:15 AM EDT - Oct,05 2012
GamesIndustry has conducted an interview with Rob Pardo after the introduction of the latest World of Warcraft expansion, Mists of Pandaria. Here's an excerpt:
Q: One of the things that's been changing in the industry is the business model. In addition to classic retail sales and subscriptions we now see free-to-play, ad-supported and other variants. Do you think these new business models will affect the game designs and the design process?

Rob Pardo: Definitely. I'm personally a big fan of game designers being involved in the monetization design, because that's what will ultimately make for the best game. A lot of times I think those become very disconnected in the industry. Someone that's more business-oriented or production-oriented will graft a business model onto a game because that's what they think is going to drive the most revenue, but the game doesn't really support it. That's one of the things you've seen a lot with the subscription-based business model. I personally think subscription-based business models can still work, but you can't over-value your game. There's been some games in the past where they've put the subscription model on it because they thought they could get away with it. The reality is if you're going to do a subscription model you need to deliver an immense amount of premium content over time, because people are going to be looking at as 'If I'm going to be $10 or $15 per month, what am I getting month after month?' If I'm not spending enough hours in your product, it's just not going to make sense as a value proposition.

Free-to-play is a much more friendly business model for a lot of people to try out. People can try these games with no risk, and then only decide to pay for games that they really see the value in or want to spend on. I think that is a really strong model. Free-to-play is almost like a genre of business models, there are so many different ways you can apply it. I think for free-to-play to work really well it has to be deeply integrated with the game design itself. What is it that people are going to buy, and how much are you going to pay for this versus the other thing? One of the biggest issues with free-to-play models these days is the feeling that a lot of games give me: That for me to progress in this game, or to really have a deep game experience, you have to pay. That's where free-to-play gets a bad rap. But that's more the game design than the model.

Q: Do you think that the big-budget single-player game is an endangered species at this point?

Rob Pardo: I do. I don't see there being a great business model for it these days. It's really sad, there's just a lot of elements out there that conspire to make those games difficult to make now. Between pirating or the ability for people to rent games, it's hard for publishers to pour millions and millions of dollars into a game and not necessarily see the return they need to make those budgets realistic.

last 10 comments:
-=WolverinE=-(05:24 AM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
What a load of crap. This S.O.B. spills out that kind of bullshit while working at BlizzCrap? Talking about WoW? Seriously? The nerve some people have! I guess according to him, Skyrim is a complete failure...

Stumpus(10:50 AM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
Maybe if they cut the bloat and hype out of gaming then it would prove profitable.
Also, games used to be a joy to play, being that they came with a gorgeous manual,map etc. instead, we get a disc with fuck-all else in the box-seeing the manual is a pdf.
This all thanks to the god of bullshit, that said when games become digital they would be cheaper due to ONE copy being always master, no shop overheads and direct to the gamer on day one etc.
I hated and knew that from day one this wouldn't happen. Same as when games went to DVD from CDROM, we were to get huge increases in gameplay length and better everything inc cheaper games...
Now we move on 10-15 years and we have blu-ray which still never took off on pc and games have gotten shitty and above all shorter! Yet we pay massive over the odds for a digital copy and tablets and phones are free to play with iap yet you've purchased the fucking game!!!
So much for moving forwards with the new digital times.
They (publishers and devs) make ten times the money of shop sales through digital, yet moan about costs being too high to develope and publish games.
They are nothing but greedy shits, pc specs are 4,6,8 gb RAM for what? A 6-7 hr playing session if your lucky. That's acceptable? Clearly a generation of idiots have been born.
No I don't want to play hrs on MP, we've had this since Doom and Kali95 gaming hasn't changed and certainly won't kill SP. again this was touted when MP gaming was announced with the likes of Battlefield. I played the living crap out of RTCW, my one and only true MP best experience of teamwork.

spectra9(12:11 PM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
I hate those so called free-to-play games. There's nothing really "free" about them. If you want to have the full experience, you always have to spend some money. They should've been called demo games or free trial games. Load of craps. They're designed just for one thing, to milk as much cash out of you for as long as possible. Blizzcrap has gone way way south, it's pathetic.

lorcro2000(12:54 PM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
All that jabber about "monetization" has NOTHING to do with how good a game is. The only drawback with single-player games he keeps harping on about is how hard it is to keep people hostage for extra cash compared to online games. Lots of people love single-player games expressly because you get to avoid dealing with idiots that way.

tride(01:46 PM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
We hear such bullshit every now and then...
For year shit like "consoles are going to die", "PC is going to die".... etc...
This is corporate propaganda, they just try to sink this in gamers minds, so that the bullshit they do will be taken easy

Tom(02:06 PM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
single player ain't dying it's just the idiot publishers who charge too much for the game. Blame pirating all you want but it's the idiot publisher who caused the pirating to happen.

Csimbi(02:10 PM EDT - Oct,05 2012 )
I call bulls**it.
Maybe it's time for you to retire.
Can't reinvent yourself? Step down, making room for others to try.

Majnun(01:01 AM EDT - Oct,06 2012 )
Another idiot.

Oh look, I have a big hammer! Everything is a nail.

zarlin(05:34 AM EDT - Oct,06 2012 )
Stumpus> Maybe if they cut the bloat and hype out of gaming then it would prove profitable.
Also, games used to be a joy to play, being that they came with a gorgeous manual,map etc. instead, we get a disc with fuck-all else in the box-seeing the manual is a pdf.
This all thanks to the god of bullshit, that said when games become digital they would be cheaper due to ONE copy being always master, no shop overheads and direct to the gamer on day one etc.
I hated and knew that from day one this wouldn't happen. Same as when games went to DVD from CDROM, we were to get huge increases in gameplay length and better everything inc cheaper games...
Now we move on 10-15 years and we have blu-ray which still never took off on pc and games have gotten shitty and above all shorter! Yet we pay massive over the odds for a digital copy and tablets and phones are free to play with iap yet you've purchased the fucking game!!!
So much for moving forwards with the new digital times.
They (publishers and devs) make ten times the money of shop sales through digital, yet moan about costs being too high to develope and publish games.
They are nothing but greedy shits, pc specs are 4,6,8 gb RAM for what? A 6-7 hr playing session if your lucky. That's acceptable? Clearly a generation of idiots have been born.
No I don't want to play hrs on MP, we've had this since Doom and Kali95 gaming hasn't changed and certainly won't kill SP. again this was touted when MP gaming was announced with the likes of Battlefield. I played the living crap out of RTCW, my one and only true MP best experience of teamwork.


My words A+

Mantrhax(05:02 PM EDT - Oct,14 2012 )
Just another retard who works for French Activision-Blizzard, btw, vivendi is really looking for someone to buy then....i hope they find !

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