An Interesting Business Model

Recently, there was a topic posted on the Browser-Based Game Zone Forums titled How to Make Money with a PBBG. The original poster has a few ideas for how to make money with his game, but was just wondering for some thoughts from other developers.

Codestryke, who owns and runs a handful of games, spoke about one of his games – which uses the ‘players buy turns’ system with an unusual twist: when one player buys turns, all the players get them. Turns are also kept in a ’stockpile’ of sorts – there are so many turns available for purchase each day, and once all the turns for the day have been bought players will have to wait for the next day to buy more.

I got in touch with Codestryke to ask him about why he went with this system as opposed to something a little more common, and this was his explanation:

In a turn based game everyone should get the same amount of turns as turns are actions so if someone gets more then another player then of course they will be able to dominate more. The only way to make the game fair yet earn income is to allow everyone to get them and the player who uses them in the best manner is the winner.

We do this on Cypher and did it on another game we ran called BordelloBattles where the idea came from originally. It’s worked out extremely well for both balance, a way to earn income and to bring a community effort into supporting the game.

While this business model seems to have worked out fine for Codestryke, I am sure that there are more out there – what sort of interesting business models have you seen in browsergames lately?

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Luke is the primary editor of Building Browsergames, and has written a large portion of the articles that you read here. He generally has no idea what to say when asked to write about himself in the third person.

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Monday, February 23rd, 2009 design, monetization
  • Based on Codestryke's post I added something similar to our game as a test run. Our game has 4 factions that compete for control of a map. Players earn "energy points" (action points) over time to use in the game. Players have been able to buy more eps from the game store for some time and it's worked well.

    For February, I decided to try Codestryke's system and make it so when anyone buys eps from the store, their team members (who are online) get an amount equal to half of what the player bought. Everyone else on line gets an amount equal to 1/8th of the purchase.

    So far the response has been great. More players online, more purchases and happier players since they can all work together now.

  • DirkSonguer

    The financial mechanics is somewhat similar to the one that Danc proposed for his Space Crack game: http://lostgarden.com/2005/...

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Building Browsergames is a blog about browsergames(also known as PBBG's). It's geared towards the beginner to intermediate developer who has an interest in building their own browsergame.

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