Cryptic COO Jack Emmert has said the studio is unsure at the moment on how it plans to monetize its online co-op game Neverwinter Nights.
While it won’t be a MMO in the traditional sense, fees could plan a part in the game’s existence.
Speaking with Gamasutra, Emmert said Cryptic and Atari have no plans on just putting “a price on the box” and leaving it at that.
“I can guarantee you that we envision this as an online product that will continue to grow over time, that we continue to add content to,” he said. “So whether it’s subscription fee, whether it’s free-to-play, whether it’s microtransactions, whether it’s pay-by-the-minute [laughs], whether it’s some sort of Ponzi scheme that I haven’t figured out, I don’t know.
“None of that has been announced.”
However, Emmert believes it’s still going to be a challenge convincing players to pay for the game when there are so many other options out there.
“Now the question isn’t ‘Do I like this game,’ necessarily, but ‘Man, am I really willing to pay another subscription on top of World of Warcraft and Xbox Live Gold? There is a threshold to get into the subscription business that requires a quality level that demands a lot of resources,” he said.
“That gives you a chance to roll the dice and see whether you’re competitive. Even if you spent $50, $60, $70 million in development, that doesn’t guarantee success. It gives you an opportunity to roll the dice, whether it’s Warhammer or Conan or poor APB.
“It’s a ton of money, but you don’t know what’s going to happen.”
The Dungeons & Dragons-based Neverwinter was announced earlier this week, and is slated for release during Q4 2011 on PC.