Japanese PlayStation game tries out the 'freemium' model


Any social gamer worth their Farmville farm is familiar with the 'freemium' distribution model, even if they're not familiar with the term. Put simply, it's when a game developer decides to give a game away for free to attract players, then make money by selling optional premium items to some small percentage of those players (free + premium = "freemium"). Now, the popular social gconcept is making its way from the world of social gaming and into downloadable console RPGs.

Kotaku has the details on Bokamatsu Revolution, a completely free RPG coming to the Japanese PS3's PlayStation Network on June 26. The free download will have about ten hours worth of dungeon-crawling content, according to assistant producer Luke Rideout, but players will be able to extend that experience with new items (selling for about $1 to $2) and additional scenarios and quests (selling for about $3.25 to $4.50).

Personally, we hope this model can catch on for console games as well as it has for social games. We'd gladly take a free version of Street Fighter IV subsidized by costume and character downloads, or a free version of Super Mario Galaxy where you pay for only the stars you collect, or a free version of Modern Warfare where only the rich players can afford to buy the best guns that can instantly kill the opposition.

Er, wait, scratch that last one.