[casual_games] RE: Payment models

Kirby, Neil A (Neil) nak at lucent.com
Mon Oct 9 22:00:27 EDT 2006

The problem, IMHO, is not with paying 25 cents for a demo.  I'd pay it in a heartbeat if it was a quarter in my pocket.  But I have to buy a $20 bag of tokens from a vendor I'm not sure of and let another vendor I'm even less sure of take tokens out of my bag.  I might trust the first vendor, but I get real uneasy about authorizing that second vendor to take my tokens whenever he thinks he's entitled to one.  That's enough to make me sit on my wallet.  And if that first vendor has a setting that automatically buys more tokens when I "run out," there is no way I'm going to expose my credit card to that kind of risk.  I'm the kind of guy who cancels and re-opens my PayPal account on an as-needed basis.

To fix it, the token vendor needs to actually give me unique tokens that are one time use.  I have a little non-web enabled app that puts the top token from my pile on the clipboard.  I can paste it into the game vendor's textbox "coin slot" and his software asks the token vendor if this token is valid.  The most the game vendor can rip me off for at one time is one token - the tokens are now back in my pocket.  If I get my game, I tell my token application to delete that top token because it won't be good anymore.  If I try to rip off game vendors, the token vendor might take notice or at least let me know that someone was spying on my tokens and trying to re-use them.  The token vendor's policy is that these things are cash equivalent; don't let them out of your control, don't buy too many because any time a valid one get presented for redemption, it's going to be redeemed.  This protects the game vendor.

In this kind of environment, every demo costs a token and the afore-mentioned play till you buy idea suddenly becomes workable.

And as to competing with free stuff, forget that.  Or giving away stuff.  The good stuff costs money, because the good stuff is hard to do well.  People who work hard and do good work should be able to eat, pay rent, and maybe put their kids through school.  I want to play the good stuff.  I want to go to good movies and hear good music.  I expect this to cost money.  Some things in life are free gifts, and I take and give them in the spirit intended.  People's jobs are not one of them.

"Nobody rides for free! 
- Jackson Browne's On_the_Boulevard

From: J?nas Antonsson <jonas at gogogic.com>
Subject: RE: [casual_games] Different Payment Models
To: <cmerrin at real.com>,	"'IGDA Casual Games SIG Mailing List'"
	<casual_games at igda.org>
Message-ID: <004301c6ebf4$ac132040$043960c0$@com>
Content-Type: text/plain;	charset="iso-8859-1"

Good points Charles, thanks. I would be interested if you could elaborate on
your view why a cross industry payment platform would never fly or take off?
Would you see no room for such a solution inside the Casual Games segment?

I can really identify with your point on getting people to reach for their
credit cards. But, as I've seen it, people are more eager to submit their
card number to a vendor - or a central agency - that has some trust. With an
account that can be easily set to withdraw a certain amount each month,
even. This is a model that is known, for example, in the lottery business.
Also with Paypal. I would suggest that it is easier to get the client to
reach for his wallet once, rather than multiple times.

My view for a central system is not to turn the main monetary models upside
down. My aim would be to introduce alternative ways to monetize gameplay.

Jónas B. Antonsson
COO (Chief Operating Officer)
Gogogic ehf.
Fákafen 9, 108 Reykjavik, Iceland 
Mail jonas at gogogic.com
Mob +354 664 8600
Tel +354 534 7700
Fax +354 534 7701
Web www.gogogic.com
blog www.jonasantonsson.com 

Neil Kirby              +1.614.367.5524        Hope is not a strategy
Lucent Technologies     nak at lucent.com         Prayer is not a process
6100 E. Broad St.                              Tuning is not a plan
Columbus, OH 43213      USA                    Chaos does not scale

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