Games a service is a term that came to describe titles that live much longer online thanks to regular injections of DLC and other add-ons
Titles like Rainbow Six Siege, Destiny 2, Battlefield 1 and others are evolving every few weeks with constant patches and a steady stream of content. According to monetisation company Digital River, this push is resulting in great benefits to publishers.
Titled Defend Your Kingdom: What Game Publishers Need to Know About Monetization & Fraud, the report (via Games Industry) points out that free-to-play games, which arguably pioneered this trend, aren’t the only ones enjoying the results today.
“In 2016, a quarter of all digital revenue from PC games with an upfront cost came from additional content,” the report reveals, referring to season passes and DLC.
The other side of that is that consumers are less willing to spend $60 on a regular game, opting instead for games with a steady stream of new content. “Publishers seek to meet these expectations and have adopted a ‘games as a service’ model, releasing fewer titles over time while keeping players engaged longer with regular updates and add-ons,” the report adds.
We’ve definitely seen this push from all major AAA publishers. Ubisoft actually announced earlier this year that it’s going to rely less on new releases, and more on adding content to existing games.
Although publishers are relying less and less on the $60 upfront cost, the report says that revenue per user is expected to grow twice as fast as the rest of the market. As for the $60 price tag, well, it seems fewer and fewer players are interested in paying it as well.
Based on data of the US audience, PC players have been found to wait around 21 days before buying a $60 game, hoping to get it cheaper. This opens up the market for key sellers and third-parties that are able to provide prices cheaper than $60 closer to launch. In some ways, the revenue gained from post-launch monetisation more than makes up for the lost sales at launch.
You can find the rest of the report through here.