A decade after launch, Warframe has managed to survive and thrive on its own without the help of an outside developer.
The MMO has survived despite being plagued by financial woes for years, and it’s not looking to be the next MMO to go broke.
But while that’s great news for MMO players, it’s also bad news for those of us who have to pay out for subscriptions.
Warframe’s current debt is about the same as most MMOs, but if the game is to survive as a standalone game, the developer has to find a way to monetize that debt.
This is a massive undertaking, and the developer is still figuring out exactly how to do it.
The company released a new update this week that shows a plan to help Warframe avoid financial catastrophe, but it’s unclear if this is enough to save the MMO.
The update notes that the game will still have some kind of subscription-based monetization model in the future, but at this point, the team has no idea what it’s going to look like.
That said, the company is still committed to providing Warframe players with a quality experience for years to come.
In fact, that’s what they did when they announced a subscription-only version of the game back in April: They created a free tier that offered access to content and features that would not be available to the paid tier, but included in-game currency that could be used to buy premium content.
Warframe would still be available for purchase, but the paid content would be limited to those who had purchased the paid version.
In short, the free tier would be available exclusively to players who purchased the full game, while the premium content would only be available on the paid account.
This change was meant to give Warframe an “in-game subscription fee,” as the developer put it.
That fee was originally $30 a month, but was reduced to $10 a month to give the game more room to grow and attract new players.
It was a great move on Warframe’s part: The game had become a niche, and Warframe was one of the only AAA MMOs that offered a solid subscription service that was free for all players.
That’s why Warframe continues to thrive as a free-to-play title, and that’s why it’s the only one of these new MMOs with any kind of traditional subscription model.
But now that Warframe, which was already a popular free-content title, is going to need to be able to survive without a traditional subscription to continue to exist, it seems like the company has failed at its job.
That is, the game could easily go bust and have no future in the MMO business, even if the company could somehow find a good deal for players.
That’s not to say that Warfarion will be unable to continue running as an independent studio.
In a post to the Warframe subreddit this week, the developers wrote that the studio would continue to support the game’s development through its own subscription service, but that it would also continue to focus on new content for the game, as well as new PvP maps and content.
These new features will be added to Warframe through a subscription system, but we don’t yet know exactly how the subscription system will work.
In the end, it may be the developers who are going to have to decide how much money to make from the game itself, and what content to release on it.
With a free plan that allows Warframe to remain free, the studio should be able make enough money to pay off its debt.
But with a subscription model that puts a significant amount of content and content-making in the hands of paid players, that may not be enough to keep Warfarions financial future afloat.
As the Warfarione team continues to try and find the right way to handle this debt, they’ve made some great strides in keeping Warframe alive.
That could lead to a much-needed financial boost for the company, but not without a fight.
It’s unclear how Warfarioned plans to monetise the debt, and whether or not the game would be able afford to keep the debt if they did not.
It would be nice to see a plan in place to help the company survive and flourish as an MMO, but now is not the time to throw away your best chance at that goal.