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阐述免费增值模式定义及虚拟商品类型

发布时间:2012-08-28 09:25:26 Tags:,,,

1、什么是免费商业模式?

因为有些人认为“游戏是一种服务”,所以免费游戏与其说是一种产品,不如说是一种服务。作为商业模式,免费模式是一种数字化混合模式,通常包含免费增值模式、微交易和虚拟经济。

免费增值模式是单纯地免费提供完整的产品和增值服务,通常需要玩家认购。微交易与小额交易有关,通常是免费游戏的主要收益来源。虚拟经济是更宽层面上的微交易。例如,在一个平台上,玩家在一个持久的游戏世界如MMO中可以不断地购买、出售或交换虚拟商品。虚拟经济的优点在于,你可以恢复即时数据,并清楚地知道在你的经济中到底发什么了什么事,而不是估计收入多少。在免费游戏中的金钱可以分为软货币(通过游戏挣得)和硬货币(通过真钱购买)。

Free(from blog.homegain.com)

Free(from blog.homegain.com)

心理学和免费模式

在免费模式的游戏中,了解用户的心思非常重要的,例如知道他们返回游戏的动机、何时追加销售,以及他们对游戏平衡性的看法(游戏邦注:即他们是否认为花钱玩游戏是公平的)。因此,在实施盈利策略时,以下两条心理学原理(其一是理论)是非常有必要知道的。

流理论(Flow Theory)

由Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi提出的流理论描述的是所有玩家都经历过的一种体验。当玩家完全沉浸于游戏当中,忘记了时间的流逝,这种感觉就是流状态。流理论可以定义为一种积极沉浸于某种活动的状态。它包括全身心地投入到活动中、具有清楚的目标、高度的全神贯注和时间感的扭曲。我认为流理论是可以导致冲动消费的一种状态,因为此时玩家完全沉浸于游戏。这就是为什么在开发免费游戏的过程中,盈利策略必须将流状态作为游戏设计过程的一部分来考虑。

冲动消费

购买虚拟商品很大程度上是冲动消费,因为这种行为欠计划。玩家通常在玩游戏一段时间后(不同游戏所需的时间不同)才购买虚拟商品。冲动消费与两个因素有关。第一是看到商品和它的价值。比如,在《军团要塞2》中,玩家看到他们的对手杀死自己的时候所装备的武器。第二个是便利性,即商品清楚地显示了它简化游戏的方法或通过增强玩家角色提升游戏体验。

虚拟商品

现在我们知道玩家进行游戏内消费的动机,再来看看虚拟商品的分类。以下是四种被证明是最有效的商品分类。

装扮道具

装扮道具的作用纯粹就是增加美观度,例如可以改变角色长相的道具。这类道具没有功能上的价值,然而对于那些看重表现自我或认为体现个性是重要的游戏体验的玩家来说,装扮道具是有价值的。

能力道具

能力道具提升了玩家在游戏中的技能,进而对整个游戏产生影响。这类道具最常见的用途就是,升级武器和攻击力、增加玩家命值和精力或加快某些游戏元素的进度以使玩家更强大。在将能力道具引入游戏以前,必须充分考虑游戏的平衡。

进程道具

进程道具可以加速游戏的进度,或通过加速某些游戏元素来降低游戏的难度。例如,在塔防游戏中,加快建造或维修建筑。引入这类道具以前,也必须考虑到游戏的平衡。

消耗品

在技术上,消耗品可以分为能力类或进程类,都可以让玩家实现某种升级。但是,消耗品是一次性的,或限制使用次数。

盈利策略

现在我们已经知道要出售什么,那么,怎么出售呢?最基本的最必要的一点是,有多种支付方式,消除任何阻碍,促进非付费玩家向付费玩家转化。根据PayPal的调查,只要增加一种支付方式,就可以提高14%的转化率。

留存率也很重要。玩家玩游戏的时间越长,消费的可能性就越大。留住玩家的最好方法就是让他们消费,这就是为什么知道什么时候追加销售如此重要。

其他策略包括有一个容易访问的商店和不断检查的指标。后者是必须的。随着CPA(获得单位成本)将玩家带入免费游戏的发展,不断地评估玩家的LTV(游戏寿命值)是否高于游戏CPA是非常关键的。

老策略——订阅费

几乎所有盈利策略都应该把提供订阅服务纳入其中。订阅的灵活性非常大。订阅者是强大的玩家,虽然他们可能现在不是最庞大的消费者,但他们可以是。因为他们通常会不断地玩、不断地返回游戏,所以关注这类玩家很重要。提供折扣优惠、每月发放硬通货、开展订阅者专属活动,这些都是创造更多价值和刺激玩家变成订阅者的好方法。(本文为游戏邦/gamerboom.com编译,拒绝任何不保留版权的转载,如需转载请联系:游戏邦

How to Monetize Free-to-Play Games

By GamesIndustry International

What is the Free-to-Play Business model?

Free-to-Play (F2P) is more of a service than a product, with some people categorizing them as “games as a service.” As a business model, free-to-play is a digital hybrid model usually consisting of freemium, microtransactions, and a virtual economy.

Freemium is simply giving a full product for free and offering a premium version, which usually needs to be subscribed to. Microtransactions involve transactions of small value, and this is usually the main source of revenue for Free-to-Play games. Virtual economies is broader implementation of microtransactions, for instance a platform where players in a persistent world game such as an MMO can continually buy, sell or exchange virtual goods. The beauty of a virtual economy is the fact that you can retrieve real time data and know pretty much what is actually going on in your economy rather than estimating what it’s earning. What a F2P game earns can be broken down into soft currency (earned by playing) and hard currency (earned through real money).

Psychology and Free-to-Play

Knowing the mind of the consumer is very important in a F2P game, whether knowing their motivations to keep coming back to your game, when to upsell, or how they view game balance (i.e. whether they perceive it as fair or pay-to-win). For this, the following two psychological principles, one being a theory, are very important to know when approaching monetization strategies.

#Flow Theory

Introduced by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, flow theory is something all gamers have been through. It’s that feeling of being fully immersed in a game not knowing how much time has passed. Flow theory can be defined as a state of positive immersion in an activity. Its components are full absorption in that activity, clear goals, a high degree of concentration, and a distorted sense of time. I believe flow theory is a state that can lead to impulse purchases due to the player being fully immersed in the game. It forms one basis for why monetization must be considered part of the game design process throughout the development of a F2P game.

#Impulse Purchases

Purchasing virtual goods largely relies on impulse buying, as there is little planning involved. Players usually purchase virtual goods after playing the game a certain amount of time and this differs for each game. There are two factors with impulse purchases. First is seeing the product and its value. An example of this is Team Fortress 2, where when players get killed they see what weapon their opponent had equipped at the time. The second is convenience, where items are clearly defined as ways that will make the game easier or enhance the experience by making the player more powerful.

Virtual Goods

Now that we know what motivates players to make in-game purchases, let’s look at virtual goods categories that have proven to be the most effective. These goods can be divided up in four categories.

#Vanity Items

Vanity items provide purely aesthetic purposes, such as items that can change the look of an in-game avatar. They serve no functional value, yet they have a value to players for whom self-expression and displaying their style is an important part of their experience.

#Power Enhancements

Power enhancing items elevate the player’s abilities in the game, and therefore affect game play overall. The most common examples are upgrades to weapons and attacks, enhancement to character health and stamina, or quicker progression of game elements that make the player more powerful. These types of items must take overall game balancing into account before being introduced into the game.

#Boosts

Boosts accelerate progression or make the game easier to play by speeding up game play elements, such as making it faster to build or repair structures in a tower defense game. Balancing is also an important consideration for boost items.

#Consumables

Consumables can technically fall into Power or Boost categories, as they can give the player the same kinds of upgrades. However they are one-time or limited use items.

#Monetization Strategies

Now that we know what to sell, how do we sell it? The most basic necessity is having multiple ways to pay to remove any friction and help increase conversion of non-paying to paying players. According to a PayPal sponsored survey, just adding one alternative payment method can increase conversion by 14 percent.

Retention is also very important. The longer a user plays, the more likely they will pay. And the best way to retain consumers is to get them to pay, which is why it’s important to know the right time to upsell (which is different for each game).

Other strategies include having a store that’s simple to navigate and constantly checking metrics. The latter is a must. With cost per acquisition (CPA) to bring players into F2P games on the rise, it’s critical to continually evaluate whether players’ lifetime value (LTV) is higher than the game’s CPA.

The Old Standby – Subscription Fees

Offering subscriptions can be part of almost any monetization strategy, and it offers great flexibility. Subscribers are power users. They are not whales, but they could be. It is important to pay attention to these users, since they will usually be the ones who keep playing and keep coming back, given that they have a financial stake in the game. Offering discounts, giving hard currency each month, having subscriber-only events, these are all ways to create more value and give players incentive to become subscribers.(source:gamesindustry)


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