Written byShuvrajit Das Biswas ·
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 was one of the most anticipated games of 2018 due to its Battle Royale mode titled Blackout.
As the first AAA Battle Royale, it made waves in the gaming community and was hailed as a polished version of PUBG by critics.
Now, fans of this genre can rejoice, as Blackout might become free to play from mid 2019.
The developer of Call of Duty, Treyarch, initially thought it would be a good idea to replace the single-player story mode campaign with the Battle Royale due to the popularity of the genre bolstered by the huge fan bases of games like Fortnite and PUBG.
Despite Blackout being a AAA game and providing a polished gameplay, it has still not eclipsed Fortnite in terms of popularity.
In fact, Fortnite eclipsed the older and tactically accurate PUBG, due to one primary factor. Being free to play, it was more accessible.
Accessibility is the pillar supporting engagement driven live services, and easy access leads to wider audience, resulting in more money.
As of now, AAA live games combine both free to play and buy to play options.
Black Ops 4, thus, costs around Rs. 4,179, despite being a multi-player only game.
Further, it embraces free to play style micro-transactions to ensure recurring cash flow.
Although Blackout is, for now, available only with the purchase of the game, it could become a standalone free to play.
Michael Pachter, an analyst with Wedbush Securities, says that games should ideally be split into a paid single player and free multi-player mode.
The latter should have micro-transactions to generate revenue.
While hardcore gamers would prefer both, it would be wiser for developers to attract a larger fan base by making the multi-player free and then charging money as the game progresses.
Pachter also predicted a migration in AAA games in 2019, as they become free to play.
His conjecture is that publisher Activision will lead this change by making the Blackout free before releasing its new game.
This will likely to increase the gamer base to 100 million and generate around $20 or $30 million, in monthly revenue.
Though publishers might be hesitant to change their existing business model for a potentially more risky one, Fortnite is the example to follow. The game has attracted investors precisely because of its ability to make money from players through micro-transactions despite being free to play.
Love Sports news?
Subscribe to stay updated.