Payment models

Discussion in 'Indie Business' started by Aggrav8d, Apr 15, 2005.

  1. Aggrav8d

    Original Member

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    I was wondering what kind of payment models people have tried and what has helped make them effective.

    Recently I started to give away a free game on my site to help increase traffic. Not being a total fool I added a donation button to the official page. A lot of people have asked for features and I'm thinking that it might be a good idea to put up a donation thermometer and mark it "feature x when I get $25, feature y when I get $50," etc... Have any of you tried something similar? How well did it work?

    Feel free to discuss any other payment systems, too.
     
  2. Black Hydra

    Original Member

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    First read my sig. (Just a disclaimer)

    Second, my opinion.

    1) Isn't this the wrong forum, this seems more of an indie business discussion than a game dev discussion.

    2) I don't think it will work. The fact is, if you want to make money, don't run it like a charity. Chances are people are generally pretty happy with a game that is a full version. I don't think people will be begging to pay money for new features, especially when these variable amounts may happen without them donating at all (from other people's donations).

    Sounds like a good idea if you want to run a freeware program and get a small bit of cash as a little reward for your work, but a horrible plan if you want to actually make money. The shareware/trialware model is a very effective model for making money. The freeware/donation model you speak of may be popular amongst customers, but thats because only the most die-hard fans and charitable folks will actually donate.

    The fact is, charities for serious diseases and very worthwhile causes have a very hard time prying money from people, games is hardly as worthy a cause so its unlikely people are going to feel the need to 'donate to the cause'. Thats why you charge money for it, because if they could get it for free they would.

    My 2 cents...
     
  3. Aggrav8d

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    "Sounds like a good idea if you want to run a freeware program and get a small bit of cash as a little reward for your work, but a horrible plan if you want to actually make money."

    That's exactly the point. $25 is worth an hour or two of my time which is all it would take to add a $25 dollar feature. I'm not doing it to get rich, just so I can afford to work on it for that short time.

    I think charities have the problem that they can't promise immediate results / return on investment. I, on the other hand, can.

    The sneaky part is this game is free to attract people to the site and then (I hope) interest them in other games they have to pay for (once they try the free demos).
     
  4. Surrealix

    Indie Author

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    Well, I was going to point you to here:
    http://www.flipcode.com/cgi-bin/fcmsg.cgi?thread_show=25549

    but I did my background research and realised that was you.

    I think that the problem with the thermometer idea is that people want something tangible for their money. If I wanted, say, the 'play again' button, and donated my $5, it still relies on other people donating too. I've paid, I want my button. now.

    Possibly you could add those features, and charge extra for each feature the customer wants.

    Game:$0
    Play again, +$2
    Fullscreen +$3

    I would pay my $5 to get a play again button, and the fullscreen option.

    The only problem I see with this is that it would be a nightmare to get it set up, and the payments working.

    I think the attraction of people to your site is by far the most valuable part of the game.

    <edit> Cool, I'm quoted on your site :D
     
    #4 Surrealix, Apr 15, 2005
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2005

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