Have Freemium Games Gone Too Far?

There’s been a lot of press about the freemium business model recently, whereby the basic game is free but users have to pay for in-app purchases that give them extra game currency or allow them to complete levels quicker, and it seems that most game developers are progressing toward this model — EA being a notable example. The Verge recently made an interesting point about Real Racing 3, in that although it’s an enjoyable game it has been completely “ruined” by in-app purchases, as they are needed for everything and progress through the game is extremely slow.

Well, now it’s over to you. What exactly do you think of the freemium business model? Does it make gameplay more enjoyable (in that you can speed certain aspects up through purchases) or does it just rack up your iTunes bill massively? Let us know in this week’s poll on the right!

And stay tuned for iPad.AppStorm’s debate, which is coming up later this month, where we’ll look both sides of freemium games — both the good and bad (and perhaps, the ugly).


  • Linda H.

    I really don’t mind the concept of freemium games, but in my experience they’ve just gone way too far. I don’t have a problem paying a bit of money now and then to add something special to my game, but in the game I play it’s gotten to the point where there is almost nothing you can do without paying cash. They’ve also slowed the game play so that it has become almost impossible to play without spending money. Companies are creating a product and have a right to be compensated for that product, but the current level of greed I’m seeing is going to drive customers away from the games.

    • http://socialwebtools.info Charnita Fance

      Well said!!! Agreed.

  • Peter D.

    I don’t mind it as such – if people want to waste their money on buying new paintjobs for a non-existent car or new outfits for a character, that’s their business. But paying to progress is a game defeats the idea of a game as such. I like to see that I’ve beaten a game by some combination of skill, luck and persistence. And the fact that so many of these things are marketed directly at kids through peer pressure manipulation is really aggravating as a parent. Even if you know how to set up parental controls.

  • Sam

    This has all come about because for some reason people seem to think that everything app related should be free. I have seen a number of surveys that show that most people don’t think they should pay for apps. When most apps are about $1 that is pretty sad.

    People will spend that much on a chocolate bar that is gone in seconds but won’t fork out for an app that a developer has spent weeks, months or years building using knowledge that has been accumulated over many years.

    Well folks, enter the freemium model.