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Google’s Wiping Out ‘Free-To-Play’ Games As We Know Them, And Apple Is Likely To Follow

By / 07.21.14
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EA


The free-to-play party is over. Can’t say it was great while it lasted. 

You have to hand it to the video game industry — only they could take the term “free” and turn it into a bad thing. Free-to-play games that nickel and dime (or dollar) players who actually want to accomplish anything — or worse, try to snooker money out of unsuspecting children — have been a problem for some time, and recently the European Union decided enough was enough.

The EU assembled a commission to study free-to-play games, and late last week, they handed down a verdict the free-to-play industry won’t like at all. Here’s the EU’s recommendations…

- Games advertised as “free” should not mislead consumers about the true costs involved.

- Games should not contain direct exhortation to children to buy items in a game or to persuade an adult to buy items for them.

- Consumers should be adequately informed about the payment arrangements for purchases and should not be debited through default settings without consumers’ explicit consent.

- Traders should provide an email address so that consumers can contact them in case of queries or complaints.

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Google has promised the Google Play store will remove the “free” designation by September, and that all games will require authentication every time a purchase is made in the future. Apple has not laid out a specific plan for dealing with the EU’s recommendations, but they have promised they will.

So yeah, technically free-to-play style games can continue, but these new rules are going to put a major, major hamper on the way most of them do business. Sorry guys, the money grab is over.

Via CVG


TOPICS#APPLE#GOOGLE#video games
TAGSANDROIDeuropean unionfree-to-playGoogle Playiosmobile games

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