Tough economic times generally lead to shifts in perspective, and that's exactly the case with the MMO industry given much of the commentary we're seeing lately. In response to these changes in the economy, more companies -- and gamers -- are starting to rethink the alternative business models that have thrived in Asia, and which are increasingly making their way into the western MMO industry. And is that so surprising? Many gamers would like to be able to play more than one or two titles in a given month, but simply aren't able to due to the monthly subscription price (time concerns aside, of course).
Ravious from Kill Ten Rats observes that while MMOs typically demand more of players than standard PC games (at least in terms of time), the wide variety of gaming options that Steam users have come to appreciate could certainly be applicable to MMOs, if other business models beyond monthly subscriptions become viable in the West. Ravious writes, "Whether it is from a Steam-driven library of games, an aging MMO population, an economic recession, or plenty of different business models coming in to the MMO world, I believe that the subscription model of today is nearly done being 'the way'."