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E3: F2P Shooter Dev Speaks Out Against  Call Of Duty Elite  Service
E3: F2P Shooter Dev Speaks Out Against Call Of Duty Elite Service
June 9, 2011 | By Staff

Zombie Studios' Jared Gerritzen, lead designer of the upcoming free-to-play online shooter Blacklight: Retribution, spoke out against Activision's decision to charge a monthly fee for its Call of Duty Elite program, in an E3 interview with Gamasutra.

Gerritzen outlined the problems he sees in Activision's new business plan. "I don't agree with it. Right now, if they could, they'd charge 60 bucks [for the game], then 20 bucks a month for a map pack -- or even just one map -- and then $9 to upload game movies to YouTube. They see this massive fan base, and why aren't they spending that money and evolving the game even more?" Gerritzen said.

"They're amazing games, but looking across the last four games, was there anything really new? That's the sad part. Think about if they tried to spend that money that they're trying to milk from the fans," he added. "It's sad. It's really weird. But there's always going to be that guy; there's always going to be the jerk."

With its own Blacklight: Retribution, Zombie Studios will rely on a free to play model that will generate income via microtransactions rather through up-front or monthly fees.

Activision's Call of Duty Elite program will offer additional unannounced features and downloadable content to existing Call of Duty owners for an additional monthly charge. Users that choose not to pay for the service will still have access to features such as stat tracking and video sharing.

Activision maintains that multiplayer features of past Call of Duty games will be intact and still free, and that Elite is completely optional for gamers who want more from the experience.

The full interview with Gerritzen, which will detail Zombie Studios' plans for entering the free-to-play market, will be posted on Gamasutra in the near future.

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Lyon Medina
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Very opinionated statement

I personally think that Call of Duty is where most of "Popular" gamers play. In a sense I want Call of Duty (C.O.D.) to succeed in some levels. It's in a way an area of Live and PSN that the (majority of) rude gamers come together and just deal with each other. I don't want C.O.D. players in my Halo games.

I don't like them, they don't like me. The internet is big enough that they can stay in their gaming universe and I can enjoy mine. Activision needs to succeed so I can enjoy every other game other than C.O.D. and if their gaming populous wants to be charged for something then who can stop them. I think that if you’re that if you are clueless to an obvious stretch to make you pay some thing, that does a whole lot of something you do not need, then you should be charged.

By saying you have a choice in if you want to purchase this upgrade or not they feed into this were looking out for their best interest. Get 5 months in people who don't have the maps will need to buy the "Elite" just so they can stay current with their other friends. But why not just release a map pack? Or just general updates that allow for more exact reason to update.

Why I am guessing here and very big shot in the dark of course. Is that at first with Elite they release these big updates lots of content, loads of stuff, stat tracking galore and the best system ever to get people at least signed up. Later they release less content, less updates, the stat tracking is never optimized, issues are riddled with the game, and the content that is being released is no longer the same quality. So you let a couple months go because they eventually announce a really large update in the future again that they make to grab your interest. Meanwhile still collecting for every month you wait.

To clarify I am not against paid subscriptions, free to play, or any method of payment other than the norm. I am only stating the negatives that I plainly see that will keep from buying a Call of Duty game. For other who utilize the game on a day to day basis, who need all the "advancements" they are adding to the game this seems like nothing. Good for them, enjoy.

That felt good to get out.