GamesBeat

Free-to-play on PlayStation 4 and Wii U? Not so fast, says Kabam

Above: Kevin Chou, the CEO of social game company Kabam, during his chat at GamesBeat 2013.

Image Credit: Michael O'Donnell/VentureBeat

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. — Between Planetside 2, World of Tanks, and other high-profile games, free-to-play seems primed to dominate the next-generation. But Kabam CEO Kevin Chou isn’t so sure.

“They don’t have the infrastructure,” Chou asserted during a GamesBeat 2013 chat Wednesday. “How do you enable constant, quick updates? They have to answer these questions.”

Chou believes that next-gen consoles have larger concerns than free-to-play integration, such as the continued shift from a revenue model built on packaged goods.

He used Nintendo as an example: “With Nintendo, you’re totally focused on getting this generation right. You totally devoted to winning over core gamers. Right now, free-to-play shouldn’t be their highest priority.”

Chou’s skepticism comes in the face of optimism from industry figures such as Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley, who is touting a community-focused free-to-play model on the PlayStation 4.

This may eventually happen, but Kabam probably won’t be bringing social games like Kingdoms of Camelot to PS4 any time soon.

“As a F2P developer,” Chou said, “we want to see an install base of tens of millions before we focus on the next generation of consoles.”

More information:

Kabam is the leader in the western world for free-to-play core games with 1st and 3rd party published titles available on mobile devices and the Web. The company is revolutionizing the video games industry by innovating in the business... read more »

Nintendo of America is consistently amazed and humbled by the passion and loyalty of our fans. Our hope is that this Page can be a place where that excitement can live, thrive and be shared. And while we love your creativity and are he... read more »

Kevin Chou is co-founder and CEO of Kabam, the western world leader in free-to-play core games. Kevin is an entrepreneur who has guided Kabam’s explosive growth, which started with a handful of people working above a dim sum restaura... read more »

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