Guild Wars franchise’s no-subscription policy has been a cornerstone for the series’ success. It also meant that, in order to turn a profit, developer ArenaNet needed to put out additional, paid content. However, in spite of the original’s business model, it seems that Guild Wars 2 won’t be seeing an expansion anytime soon.
“So right now we’re not really looking at expansions as an option,” explained lead content designer Mike Zadorojny. “It’s something that’s on the table but it’s not something we’re focused on, because what we want to do is – our idea here is that with Living World, we can do what expansions would have done but do it on a more regular basis.”
“If we do this right, we will probably never do an expansion and everything will be going into this Living World strategy,” Zadorojny continued. Fundamentally, rather than pursuing micro-transactions or paid additional content, ArenaNet will instead focus primarily on frequent and fluid content updates through the vanilla game. “This allows us to have this world that’s changing and evolving and essentially goes into what television does: stay tuned next week when something exciting is going to happen.”
That’s all well and good, and spells innovation for the game’s future, but it also leaves one harrowing question to be asked: Where’s the money coming from? There’s no monthly subscription fee and the game won’t be seeing expansions for several years; so, how does the game turn a profit? Zadorojny had an answer: apparently, one-time sales and Gem Store (the game’s non-pay-to-win cash store) purchases “absolutely is enough.”
Dark sorcery, I say.
Looking for a new MMO? Find out more on Guild Wars 2 in our full review.