At some point, LawBreakers becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: Everyone talks about how it’s doing poorly, which makes people not want to play, which makes it do even more poorly, which makes more people not want to play, which … you get the picture.
While Boss Key Productions’ Cliff Bleszinski has tried to paint a rosy picture for the future of his game, it’s clear that it’s not pulling in the players like he would wish. There’s a lot more coming to LawBreakers, including team deathmatch and a proper ranked mode, but if those don’t bring in the bodies, then what?
GameSpot has a lengthy interview with Bleszinski that covers all of these topics and more — including his possible political aspirations(!) — but we’ll focus on the key issue: whether LawBreakers might go free-to-play. As might be expected, nothing is totally off the table:
“Should it have gone free? Maybe. Would we consider experimenting with that in the future? I wouldn’t remove it from the table. But, I just … I don’t want to get down into sleazy free to play, as much as I want to keep this game afloat and with our, like I said, our fledgling community, I don’t want to get into Candy Crush type-tactics ’cause I just won’t be able to sleep at night and I don’t sleep well to begin with.
But yeah, I wouldn’t rule it out in the future, especially if we consider rolling the game out … Well, we’re considering in the future, rolling the game out in Asia. It’s one of those things that you almost have to do that in Asia, so we’ll be considering doing that, maybe one of those things if we do it there, would it make sense to roll it back out to the states? Possibly. But, I don’t want to start doing gun rentals any time soon in game.”
As also might be expected, Bleszinski is still torn about “Candy Crush type-tactics” and “gun rentals” in LawBreakers, as he and other Boss Key employees have repeatedly wrung their hands over their ability to make a non-abusive free-to-play game. At some point, he’ll probably need to bring on a consultant to show him how to do a decent job of it, while still also bringing in the money Boss Key needs to stay afloat.
(Bleszinski also likes to compare LawBreakers to Warframe, saying that Digital Extremes’ title “slowly built their very small audience.” Warframe averaged over 10,000 concurrent players on Steam in its first full month of operation.)
What if you were that consultant? Suppose you were tasked with “teaching” Cliffy B the “right” way to do a free-to-play game? Sure, you’d say, “don’t suck,” but what exact games — ideally (successful) competitive PvP games similar to LawBreakers — would you tell him to look at so he could get it right? Leave your comments below!