Have you ever listened to local sports radio, and heard callers suggest beyond ridiculous trades? You know, the one that goes something like “We get their star players, and we give them three of our bench guys that are underperforming with bad contracts”. And once everyone stops laughing, they always ask the guy “why would the other team make that trade”, which is usually meet with silence, blabbering, or the caller hanging up?
That’s kinda what happens when the blog-o-sphere talks about payment models for MMOs. We all understand you would rather pay $2 than $15 for WoW, or that instead of that flat $15 you would rather only buy the content you want, which in your mind would be less than $15 a month. You would rather pay less than more, we know. Now comes the follow-up question; why would the company want you paying less? Why would any company making a profit go “You know, we’ve noticed gamer Bob is not playing enough to justify that $15 we are charging him, let’s give him an option to pay less”? Unless your new payment method includes ‘the company makes more money this way’, it’s a stupid idiotic thing to say (bonus points to the first person to get the reference).
Now, one COULD argue that if you drop your price from $15 to say $5 a month, you would attract 3x+ more subscribers which in turn leads to higher profits (assuming of course your costs don’t increase significantly due to the 3x+ population increase, but let’s keep things simple), or that instead of a subscription model you go F2P and bleed dry or nickel and dime those who buy all the way in. But regardless of the solution, your reasoning can’t consist of “I want to pay less”, unless you balance that out with “someone else pays more”.