Trion Worlds On Rift Lifetime Subs: ‘Nope, Never’
In an era in which subscription-based MMOs are increasingly squeezed, and even franchises which should have been invincible are forced to go free to play, it’s understandable that those games still carving out a living via subscription are thinking very carefully about how they conduct their business. Take Trion Worlds, makers of Rift, for example. In an interview with A List Daily, Rift global brand director Jim Butler discussed their strategy at length. Though the whole interview is fascinating, we were most struck by his comments regarding the possibility of a lifetime subscription for dedicated Rift players.
“Nope; never,” Butler said when asked if Trion might ever provide such an option. “I was against the idea when we did it at Turbine, and it won’t happen on my watch here at Trion. Lifetime memberships are a great deal for consumers that plan to spend the next few years playing the game, and a financial disaster for subscription-only companies that have to continue paying for new feature development, salaries, server costs, marketing, etc. Ultimately, it’s a bad deal for the consumer in the long-term.”
He’s got a point. To keep things profitable, you need a steady infusion of money. Letting people frontload their investment might make you temporarily flush with cash but in the long term, lifetime membership users don’t typically tend to expand. And besides, it isn’t that expensive, if, that is, you’re the kind of person who really likes MMOs. But what do you think, Game Fronters? Is this a chincey way to conduct your business? Sound off in comments.