ngmoco's Cousins expects free-to-play equivalent of Skyrim in a few years

Ben Cousins, who spearheaded Battlefield Heroes and Battlefield Play4Free for EA before being snatched up by ngmoco to head up its offices in Sweden, envisions an industry landscape where big-budget free-to-play titles dominate.

Cousins spoke of several different tiers of freemium games at the Free-2-Play Summit in London, as reported by GI.biz. The highest he predicts as a "monetization super-highway," with no limit to what players can spend and rewards that are more interesting and complex. "I believe that single-player will be the next to be cracked in terms of freemium monetisation," he said. "And I'm talking about traditional, story-based, scripted, linear and non-linear single-player that we see on consoles.

"I am totally 100 percent confident -- I will bet large amounts of money -- that we will have, in the next few years, a free-to-play equivalent of Skyrim," Cousins said. "A game like Skyrim, where you accrue skills and equipment over time, that you can play for hundreds of hours, is actually one of the easiest games to develop for a free-to-play model. That would be a big hit."

In this future, Cousins said the average user would have no problem dropping $60 over the course of playing the game. "In the future I believe free-to-play will be the way that nearly everyone plays games, it will be nearly every genre, and it will be nearly every platform."

[Image credit: OfficialGDC]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.