Namco Bandai: Cheap free-to-play games are harming high-quality releases

'Free-to-play games can't be high quality'

Namco Bandai: Cheap free-to-play games are harming high-quality releases

Whatever your opinion on the free-to-play and freemium business models, it's fair to say the F2P gaming scene is booming at the moment.

Hence, it's no surprise to see developers are dropping F2P games all over the shop.

However, there are still a number of developers who have no desire to jump on the F2P bandwagon. Namco Bandai is one of them.

In fact, not only is Namco Bandai opposed to the movement, but it also had some harsh words to say recently at the Cloud Gaming Europe conference.

Churn rate

Namco Bandai senior VP for Europe Olivier Comte argued that the free-to-play scene encourages game creators to churn out cheap low-quality titles, and that it will eventually leave the entire industry in a dire situation.

"Free-to-play games can't be high quality," he said, adding that smaller F2P titles are giving consumers pricing expectations that AAA titles simply cannot compete with.

"We need to put certain value on certain work," he suggested. "When you're a big company, you can't take risks too quickly, you can't make a change just because there's a fashion for a couple of years; you want to be there in 20 or 30 years."

Mike Rose
Mike Rose
An expert in the indie games scene, Mike comes to Pocket Gamer as our handheld gaming correspondent. He is the author of 250 Indie Games You Must Play.