Just Most of Them
Electronic Arts Chief Financial Officer Blake Jorgensen has clarified a comment he made about EA micro transactions. Last week, he stated that EA would be utilizing micro transactions in all of their games because “Consumers are enjoying and embracing that way of the business,” and it makes them a ton of money. The word “all” caused a few web sites to report about that remark, and this week we have seen a bit of a backtrack. Polygon reports that Jorgensen attended yet another conference and let us know that he was mostly talking about EA micro transactions in their mobile device games.
“I made a statement in the conference along the lines of ‘We’ll have micro-transactions in our games’ and the community read that to mean all our games, and that’s really not true,” he said. “All of our mobile games will have micro-transactions in them, because almost all of them are going to a world where they are play for free.” Blake Jorgensen—Wedbush Technology Conference in New York City
We didn’t read it to mean “all” your games. You said “all” of your games:
“We’re building into all of our games the ability to pay for things along the way, either to get to a higher level to buy a new character, to buy a truck, a gun, whatever it might be.” Blake Jorgensen Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference
As for non-mobile device games, Jorgensen says that EA micro transactions are meant to extend the life of games.
“It allows someone to take a game that maybe they played for 1,000 hours and play it for 2,000 hours.” I get that, but it makes me feel like they will release partial games, charge sixty bucks for them and then make us pay for the rest of it… bit by bit. “We are very conscious that we don’t want to make consumers feel like they’re not getting value.”
Jorgensen is reacting to community backlash that comes along with most big changes. The transition to micro transactions in games is as real as the transition to always-online gameplay. It’s happening. How it is implemented will determine consumer satisfaction and ultimately how we chose to spend our money.
Gamebreaker.TV readers voiced their opinions on EA micro transactions last week:
“One side I’m ok with it: Micro transactions to let people with busy lives complete games faster for a price, On the other hand I hate it because who is the judge when it becomes too much? James Lange
“Those of us who were a part of the first gen of computer gamers and creators have realized that spending countless hours toiling away at a task in game to earn one coveted shiny is too much like real life work, so we changed the game.” Jim Bergevin Jr.
“Maybe they should get the micro-transactions right in SWTOR before they apply it to everything.” Jason Harrigan
I don’t mind paying for games, I’m not asking for everything to be given to me for free. I don’t necessarily mind EA micro transactions in all their games, as long as they are careful with it. Gamers these days are adults with jobs and kids and lives (except for writers) that might want to spend a bit extra to move along faster in a game or be able to skip the grind to get the stuff it takes to progress to the end. I get that, I just don’t want to buy half a game and be nickel and dimed to be able to play the rest of it.
But what do I know? I pay a monthly sub to an MMO.