OnLive gives boot to subscription fees

By Nathan Grayson, Tuesday, 5 October 2010 06:47 GMT


You mean we don’t have to pay for the privilege of spending additional money on games? What a steal!

“It’s official: There will be no base monthly fee for the OnLive Game Service going forward. WOOT! Free Instant-play Demos, Free Massive Spectating, Free Brag Clip videos, messaging, friending,” OnLive CEO Steve Perlman wrote in a blog post.

Initially, the cloud gaming service was hit by a cow-catapulting storm of backlash when it was announced that a monthly fee of $14.95 would be required in order to access it. This, coupled with pre-existing price tags on individual games, left many gamers understandably cold.

But surely Perlman and co. knew they were flirting with disaster when they added a “Your pockets must be this deep” sign to their main attraction. Why, then, did they go through with it?

“Although we wish we could have confirmed no monthly fee from the get-go, pioneering a major new video game paradigm is hard: we had to first grow to a large base of regular users before we could understand usage patterns and operating costs. Now that we’ve reached that stage, we can confidently say a monthly fee is not needed,” Perlman explained.

Also of note: OnLive TV adapters and gamepads are apparently “in production” now. Presumably, this means a release is just around the corner.

UK folks, meanwhile, will get to try their hands at OnLive’s gee-whiz tech by the end of 2011. But look on the bright side: the service’s current users are unwitting guinea pigs, running through a maze where there are no food pellets. Only sadness. Hopefully, things will be different next year.

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