The Student News Site of Bellevue West Senior High School

The Thunderbeat

The Student News Site of Bellevue West Senior High School

The Thunderbeat

The Student News Site of Bellevue West Senior High School

The Thunderbeat

Video game monetization devalues gaming experience

118 Views
Video+game+monetization+devalues+gaming+experience
Andrew Callison

According to the website Gamerhub, in 2020 the video game industry including PC, console, and mobile games was worth $159.3 billion. Video games have become such a juggernaut of an industry mainly through their monetization models. 

Monetization models are the methods corporations employ to maximize the profit they can get out of the games they produce; they’re pretty much found in every game. Though the most profitable monetization models are often found in online multiplayer games with larger consumer bases than single-player games. 

Premium monetization is by far the most widespread of the monetization model. It is simply when the publisher charges a flat retail price for their game. The rate charged for the game is usually determined by different factors such as the standard price of games at the time, the amount of content the game has, and the specific edition of the game.

It’s absolutely infuriating since at times it feels as if players who don’t pay for these in-game advantages are being unjustly punished simply because they aren’t willing to sell their souls to major corporations.

— Andrew Callison

Loot boxes, on the other hand, start to affect the overall experience of a game and are a detriment to the player. Loot boxes are when a player pays a fee to receive a small pack of randomized in-game items. Depending on the game these items can range from cosmetics such as skins and emotes, to items that can drastically alter a player’s experience such as abilities, upgrades, and weapons.

When loot boxes do hand out items that can provide buffs and bonuses to those willing to pay, it can completely ruin the experience for other players. It’s absolutely infuriating since at times it feels as if players who don’t pay for these in-game advantages are being unjustly punished simply because they aren’t willing to sell their souls to major corporations. Obviously this causes them to be a massive detriment to the overall game in which they are implemented.

Loot boxes have mostly taken a back seat over the past few years. Recently major publishers have moved away from the loot boxes blind-bag nature and more toward rewards based systems. Today one of the most prevalent forms of monetization is the Battle Pass.

As with loot boxes, the Battle Pass is a model designed to encourage players to play more routinely, in which the player pays for access to a tiered system through which they can unlock skins, emotes, and other in-game items by earning points through simply playing the game. The Battle Pass model is usually utilized in free-to-play online games since there is no initial retail price for the game. 

The experience the Battle Pass provides is ultimately a tedious one. It will usually just lead to the player repeating the same set of tasks and challenges for hours upon hours all just for a few cosmetic items. As a result the Battle Pass brings a majority of games down since it acts as a substitute for in-game content rather than complimenting it.

Mobile games are obviously very different from console or PC games, and because of that they have to use much more in-your-face monetization methods such as in-game ads. In-game ads are just absolutely horrible and have no reason to exist. Sure, you can pay a small fee to remove them but at that point they may as well just charge you for the game itself. They do nothing but pull a player out of the experience just so they can see the same ad for the same social media app or other mobile game for the millionth time.

Usually, as long as the loot boxes and Battle Passes don’t begin to have a heavy effect on the experience of the players and are simply there as harmless bonuses or content expansions they’re alright. But when they do cross that line it can often lead to an overall worse experience for those who don’t want to sink their life savings for a video game.           

Donate to The Thunderbeat
$50
$1000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Bellevue West Senior High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Thunderbeat
$50
$1000
Contributed
Our Goal