Ex-Blizzard President Proposes Tipping for Quality Video Games

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As a gamer, you know the thrill of finding that perfect video game: one with an immersive world, compelling gameplay, and masterful design. It's a rare gem that deserves recognition. But how should game companies reward talented developers who create these exceptional experiences?

Recently, ex-Blizzard President Mike Morhaime proposed implementing tipping - allowing players to provide monetary tips to studios and developers for games they love.

While this idea may seem innocuous, you must carefully consider the implications. Could tipping warp design incentives and game progression? Might it enable predatory monetization practices? In this article, you'll examine both sides of the tipping debate and how this well-intended suggestion could potentially open Pandora's box.

The Pros and Cons of Allowing Tips for Great Video Games

Increased Revenue and Support for Developers

Allowing players to tip developers for an exceptional gaming experience could provide additional revenue streams and support. Thats thethoughts Recently of ex-Blizzard President Mike Morhaime. He proposes implementing a tipping facility. This would allow players to provide monetary tips to studios and developers for games they love. Players who feel they have received value from a game may choose to show their appreciation financially. This could incentivize developers to focus on high-quality, engaging games to generate more tips.

Variable Pricing Based on Perceived Value

A tipping model would allow for variable pricing, where players can pay what they feel a game is worth to them. Players on a budget could still enjoy a game at a lower cost, while players who feel a game provides significant enjoyment and value could tip at a higher rate. This may make gaming more accessible and affordable to a wider range of players.

Difficulty Monitoring Tipping Abuse

However, there are significant risks and challenges to consider with a tipping model for video games. It may be difficult for platforms and developers to monitor for tipping abuse and fraud. Players could potentially find ways to take advantage of a tipping system for their own financial gain. Strict policies and controls would need to be put in place to prevent such abuse.

Inequity Between Popular and Niche Games

There is also a risk of inequity, where only popular mainstream games receive substantial tips, while niche indie games struggle. Not all players may tip, and some may only tip for certain types or genres of games. This could negatively impact developers of less popular game types. Balancing tips between developers may prove challenging.

While a tipping model for video games could provide benefits, there are many complex issues to consider regarding implementation and management. Close monitoring for abuse, fairness policies between developers, and finding the right balance of required payments versus optional tips would all need to be addressed. Overall, more discussion and research are needed on if and how a tipping system could work for video games.

blizzard favourtitesImplementing a Voluntary Tipping System - How It Could Work

For a voluntary tipping system to be successfully implemented, careful consideration needs to be given to how players can choose to tip and how developers can receive and distribute tips. A simple way to enable tipping could be an in-game pop-up message after a certain number of hours of gameplay that gives players the option to leave a tip if they are enjoying the game. Players who wish to tip could select an amount from a few preset options or enter a custom amount.

Tips could be collected by the game’s developer or publisher and distributed to employees. To increase transparency and build goodwill, the companies should disclose how tips are being distributed and consider giving players a say in how their tips are allocated. For example, players could choose to have a percentage of their tip go directly to specific teams like art, design, programming, or customer support.

A voluntary tipping model may lead to higher employee satisfaction and retention, as developers and support staff receive more direct feedback and compensation from players who most appreciate their work. This could motivate teams to prioritize quality and continuous improvement to create the best possible experience for players.

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