Paradox: “Xbox Game Pass Is A Decent Model, But We’re Not Getting Paid Enough”
The Xbox Game Pass business model requires developers and publishers to be paid based on the downloads of their games included in the subscription.
This formula has found wide appreciation in the development scene, in addition to the fact that there is pleasure in discovering a showcase effect that allows relatively little known titles to be discovered and played more.
However, Fred Wester, a member of the Paradox Interactive studio, pointed out in a panel at the GameLab in Barcelona that this mechanism is penalizing for games with high longevity.
“On Spotify, they pay you based on how many times your song is heard. On Netflix, they pay you a fixed fee based on how much they think your product is worth. These are two fundamentally different things, and this is what happens here too,” explained Wester. “OnLive, for example – they said you can have your game on our service and we’re going to attract a lot of customers, and we’re going to deliver you money based on how many hours people play the game,” he said.
“Now at Paradox, we loved that business model, because people play our games for three or four thousand hours. While the Game Pass model to us is still a decent model, we think we’re not getting paid enough, because people play our games more than they play very single-player driven narratives,” Wester stated.
An interesting observation, undoubtedly, but perhaps contrary to Microsoft’s idea regarding the Xbox Game Pass, if we think that the same Xbox home has moved to acquire studios capable of realizing more collected experiences (such as Ninja Theory or Compulsion Games) and with shorter development times.