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During these really tough economic times Waldo decided to do some research on how game companies are doing their best to monetize and stay in business.
Big companies always have the upper hand when it comes to sales due to their brand and customer base. How do the little fish get their way in such a competitive market?
Wally discovered that the only way the little fish are able to stay afloat is by creating simple yet highly addictive video games that consumers can't ignore once they begin playing.
Another strategy the little game companies are using is to rehash old games that are no longer protected by copy write. The idea is to enhance their graphics and game play so to attract both the old and new clients.
Most of the time however these companies need to allow users to play for free in order to suck them in, so how do they monetize?
One of the new ways of doing business in the game field is to allow users to play games for free but to also create some obstacles that can instantly be removed by throwing some money at them.
One such ploys is to make the games available both on PC and smart phone platforms in order to connect them. The idea is to allow the users to unlock certain levels by broadcasting their scores on their Facebook page or account or by telling their friends what games they are playing or like.
Often times they will get asked to like a specific fan page directly related to the game they play.
Another method of getting players to pay for games is to give them a life limit or time limitation on their game. These can be removed or lives can be obtained by paying something along the lines of 99 cents.
The game companies want to make it easy for consumers to get addicted and also able to afford the pay off for continuing the game right away as opposed to having to wait for the game itself to allow them to move forward from where they left off.
Some of the larger companies like Sony are also struggling with sales however their new marketing strategy is quite different. Instead of allowing users and fans to play the games for free they make it difficult for them to continue using their old console to play.
They want customers to buy the latest console. This in a way is a good strategy since the newest console is always capable of playing the older games so the hard core gamers don't complain and the new customers get to play the most updated ones.
Another ace up their sleeve is that they have stopped producing games that work on the old consoles and stopped selling them in stores such as game stop. This makes it harder for consumers to buy the old games unless they have been re mastered specifically to run on the newest console.
The newest consoles tend to be harder for hackers to crack so this also improves the company's chances of avoiding online and other sources of piracy meaning more sales.
One of the smartest ways companies like Sony are getting around piracy is by creating online games that can only be played through their latest console.
This enables them to sell both items and make a profit from both because it is very difficult for someone to use a computer to both emulate the console and play online, not to mention that even the best emulators crash as well as lose user data making it quite pointless to go that route.
Another reason to avoid this is that to emulating the latest Playstation would require a state of the art PC, which would end up costing someone more than buying the actual console.
By forcing users to play online the company is able to monitor user IPs making it difficult for the average Joe to boycott the system or to avoid paying the monthly required fee.
There will always be hackers who beat even the most sophisticated of systems however since the majority of users can't bypass this system Sony still has the upper hand.