You know what would be absolutely insane, and yet in keeping with today’s typical AAA trend? GTA 6 being a free to play MMO with paid microtransactions.
I’m sure the brains of most of you just melted, exploded or combusted at reading that sentence (GTA BOOM does not accept any responsibility for injuries caused by reading our content), Knowing Rockstar, it probably won’t happen. But the sad truth is, with the state the industry is in at the moment, the possibility exists.
With the recent announcement and even more recent release of GTA Online Freemode Events, it is clear that Rockstar is taking GTA in a more multiplayer direction, and with reason. GTA Online was, and is, a massive success, outperforming even the greatest expectations of the developer. With the Freemode Events and continued silence regarding the question of single player DLC, it is clear which mode Rockstar is devoting more resources to. The reason behind this decision lies in some older news regarding GTA V sales.
When the game hit the insane 54 million shipped copies milestone, Rockstar and Take Two Interactive released some financial info showing that the vast majority of their revenue came from microtransactions in GTA Online. GTA Online players may purchase Shark Cash Cards for real money, which then add in-game currency to their characters. The free-to-play/pay-to-win model for video games has been immensely popular and lucrative in the past few years, with a number of big-name MMOs switching to an F2P system.
Now, among “hardcore” gamers, “Free to Play” is a hated term. I myself despise this trend in gaming. Defiance, a Sci-Fi MMO started as a $60 purchase and unlimited game-time, went F2P. Many of the early adopters jumped ship. Guild Wars 2 recently switched to a F2P model, and old players have been evacuating en masse. However, the old core fans leaving isn’t noticed in the massive influx of new free players, which is why developers don’t really care. As long as the player and profit numbers go up, anything goes.
Would you abandon the GTA franchise if it turned into a F2P microtransaction-ridden MMO?