Activision remains ‘sceptical’ about new console business models

Free-to-play may be the current darling of many a games publisher, but don’t expect a dramatic shift in the way in which consumers pay for the next-generation of console games.

With respect to new business models, I can’t comment specifically on the next-generation consoles,” Activision boss Bobby Kotick told investors last night. But our general view is we approach new business models sceptically. And we take our time. And we look for those that will turn out to be something that is sustainable for a long term.

I think we’re seeing there are a lot of exciting new ways to allow customers to pay for their experiences, there are a lot of new ways for us to monetise our content.

But I can’t say that you’re going to see any dramatic shifts in the way that we monetise on the console.”

Elsewhere in the call Activision said that it had enjoyed success with the new microtransactions it recently introduced to Call of Duty, but there’s still no hint of a change to how it offers World of Warcraft – despite the game’s significant declines.

The conclusion? That Kotick thinks 40-60 console games will remain a viable proposition for consumers despite the growth of low-cast tablet and smartphone gaming. Is he right?

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