Game Developers Merge Sales and Charity To Find Success
Already this year we’ve seen game developers taking novel approaches to game sales. I wrote just a few months ago about one developer who used crowdsourced funding to meet the start-up costs of developing a video game. This time, a developer is using a series of top-selling, critically acclaimed video games to simultaneously help charity and prolong sales of games that have been out for some time.
Pay-What-You-Want Model Keeps Money Rolling In
When it comes to video games, new products are constantly being released that often make older products obsolete. However, there are games that leave such a lasting impression on players, that are so much fun to play, that they stay popular long after their release. Unfortunately, maintaining the price of the game can often drive sales down. Games that sell big their first year are often the subject of drastic price cuts, making them more affordable and moving more copies. The pay-what-you-want model offers gamers the opportunity to play games they love, without having to spend a lot of money. In these tough economic times, this is how small, independent game designers are building quality, trusted brands: by giving players what they want at a price they can afford.
Giving Back… Twice.
It’s great to be able to play a game you love and not have to pay a lot to do so. It’s even better if your purchase of that game also supports a charitable cause. The two have definitely been linked before, but now a site called HumbleBundle.com offers an additional feature: a sliding scale. Contributors can choose how much they want to pay for a game or group of games, then decide who gets what cut of the donation by moving a sliding scale. HumbleBundle.com also offers a variety of trusted payment methods including Paypal and Amazon Payments. The best part is that the package of games being offered is expected to change periodically, offering an ongoing spring of revenue for developers and charities alike. A timer on the site counts down the days remaining on the current package of games being offered. One might expect that this revenue stream might be rather small, given that donations have the potential to be very small. It’s proving to be quite the opposite. So far the site has raised $2.7M with only 353,000 purchases. The highest purchase to date is an incredible $7424.42. This model suggests that there is something to be gained from pairing pleasure with social responsibility on the web. Oh, and it seems to do wonders for the brands involved, too.