World of Warcraft is an unavoidable comparison when discussing MMO's (massively multiplayer online games). Of late, Guild Wars 2 is an unavoidable comparison as well. In a world where players fight in large groups together on online battlefields,the discussion of monthly payments is a hotly contested debate. With the recent success of games like Guild Wars 2, and games adopting free-to-play models like DC Universe Online after having monthly payments, can any game expect to enter the MMO market with recurring payments and survive?
This is a gamble that the developers of The Elder Scrolls Online are willing to take. With the success of the Elder Scrolls series it is reasonable to assume that many players are willing to spend $15 USD a month in order to wage war in the Elder Scrolls universe. But is the Elder Scrolls universe worth $15 a month in comparison to a one-time fee to play in the Guild Wars universe? If the name of the game in question is not World of Warcraft, chances are the answer is "no."
With better free-to-play or one-time-fee options out there, gamers will be hard pressed to spend $60 to purchase a game that they have to pay $15 a month in order to play. The Elder Scrolls Online will maybe be able to hold its payment system for a few months. After that, it will probably end up adopting a one-time-fee system like the MMO's before it.