Free-To-Play's Next Frontier? It Could Be Virtual Reality

Jason Winter
By Jason Winter, News Editor
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Oculus Rift VR

Even as free-to-play seems to be taking a beating in recent weeks, there was an interesting talk at the Game Developer's Conference in San Francisco yesterday that bolstered its outlook for the future. As reported by VentureBeat, a panel of developers made the bold claim that "Free-to-play gaming is coming to virtual reality."

Well, it's everywhere else, in some form or another, so why not? It seems a little incongruous, especially if you look at how much VR costs and figure that the people using it won't shy away from spending on full-priced games. But while the market is relatively small now, it might make sense for later adopters to try what's worked elsewhere -- that being free-to-play -- and apply it to VR gaming, especially if the price of VR comes down and appeals more to budget-conscious gamers.

One thing that I'm a little weirded out by is the latter part of the discussion, which mentions a company that inserts video trailers into VR games, to provide advertising revenue. I just can't envision any world where gamers would be OK with ads in the middle of their games. The company doing this, Immersv, says that 79% of video ads they insert are viewed to completion. That seems way out of whack to me, and I almost wonder if the rate is so high because people are struggling with the new tech and aren't sure how to close the ads.

So... virtual reality plus free-to-play. Sound like a good match to you?

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In this article: Oculus Rift.

About the Author

Jason Winter
Jason Winter, News Editor
Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.

Discussion (9)

Unknown 6 years ago
I like the idea of VR but get a stable base and affordable one that consumers can get before you milk it stupid greedy companys. I already can afford one and plan to get one towards the end of the year but I honestly think pushing VR experience onto smart phones and tablets is stupid. It's not real VR just a smart phone that your holding up to your face. Get a real VR headset or don't use VR platform at all. I'm not trying to be mean with this post I'm just trying to be serious about this. And if the companys can stop being greedy for at least a couple years or better if they stop being greedy at all. I'm sure they will get a stable version out sooner or at least build better versions. I honestly don't think VR will be ready till 2020-2025 but those greedy companys are already pushing for it's release can tell it's already gonna fail.

lol 6 years ago
dude todoran, you are never happy with anything...

View 1 reply
Buggy 6 years ago
IF vr's are becoming a norm it better not be the oculas after they got bought out by facebook I say no seeing they don't got any integrity but to get bought out. I Mean they already got alot of fame for branching out to being VR but nois my simply answer if it's oculas but if not oculas bring out the Vr machine for the public.

Ninetenduh 6 years ago
The thought itself is quite stupid, VR is niche that still has to become more, sure it is interesting but
since it is still not affordable by Casual players a VR based MMO will pretty much developed for 100-200 people, and at max only a handful would play it.

People still dream and believe that a VRMMO like .hack or Sword art Online / Log Horizon would be possible but that idea simply won't come to happen in the next 100 years, it would fry our brain.

But i see a bigger risk combining long Term games with VR, people already tend to develop multiple personalities during online times, especially in MMO's, true to the motto "Be everything you cannot be", ultimately this will lead to even more Addiction cases then we already have.

View 1 reply
Todoran 6 years ago
FREE-TO-PLAY’S NEXT FRONTIER? IT COULD BE CRAP because the FREE-TO-PLAY’S ACTUAL FRONTIER! IS SCAMS

View 1 reply
meh 6 years ago
VR doesn't even have a stable base yet, and they're already milking it.


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