Earlier this month, China-based game developer Cmune released free iOS and Android tablet versions of its first title, UberStrike, a first-person shooter game, reported The Next Web.
Last October, a paid beta version of the social shooting game was made available on the iPad. But now, with it being free, many users are complaining — as with many freemium games — that it has become more “pay to win” than anything.
Benjamin Joffe, founding partner and business intelligence chief at Cmune clarified the decision to go freemium with e27. “Freemium is not for everyone. [...] We went for that pricing model as it allows to move from ‘game-as-a-product’ (in a box, finished once and for all) to ‘game-as-a-service,’ constantly evolving and improving. The model is not better or worse, it all depends on what you want to build, and how much feedback and interaction you want with users. Box products are ‘fire-and-forget,’ services have to be strong at operations, support, community engagement, content, etc.”
He added that with real-time multiplayer 3D first-person shooting games, it takes a lot more effort than creating a Flash-based game or single-player mobile game. With over 10 million players, they started attracting various investors like Skype founders and DCM, which helped Cmune grow their team and expand to other platforms.
The game started off as an Apple Widget, then on the web, MySpace and even Cyworld. The old music networking space and South Korean networking site slowly declining, while Facebook started to gain more support. But why did they take this long to start on iOS? Benjamin clarified that this was a question of technology. “Very simply because iPads became strong enough to support our game only recently. Tablets are great but not quite the CPU and graphic capabilities of computers or consoles.”
Image Credit: UberStrike