Pay-to-win games have been plaguing players since big corporate game developers decided to introduce microtransactions into their games. Now, news has surfaced about one developer who refused to incorporate in-game purchases in his viral game and how much it cost him.
According to IGN, George Fan, the creator of PopCap's hit game Plants vs Zombies, openly shared his opinion on introducing microtransactions for the sequel to his game with EA. The story of Fan's stand was shared on Alex Larrabee's Roundtable Podcast by his friend Edmund McMillen, the creator of The Binding of Isaac and Super Meat Boy.
During the discussion, McMillen described Fan's journey as a games developer. Apparently, the young Fan was scooped up by PopCap after creating a game called Insaniquarium, reported Comicbook. The gaming company gave Fan a small team to work with, and he decided to make Plants vs. Zombies in 2009 which as everyone knows became a huge success.
Later in 2011, EA acquired PopCap and tried to convince Fan to introduce pay-to-win features into a sequel to his game. The Asian game developer liked the idea of sequels to his game but didn't seem comfortable with introducing microtransactions to Plants vs. Zombies and tried to reject the idea.
EA ultimately fired Fan for his objection to including microtransactions into Plants vs. Zombies. After that, the game developer and PopCap separated ways.Staying true to himself, Fan still creates games that don't have pay-to-win features. His latest creation is called Octogeddon, reported VentureBeat. He developed the game at an indie game studio named All Yes Good.
Fan made a prototype of Octogeddon by himself and made a triumphant return to PopCap games to fully develop his new baby. This time around, EA seems to have learned its lesson since the game is available for a one-time purchase price, suggesting that Octogeddon does not have in-game purchases.
Fan's small triumph over Electronic Arts sets a good example for other game developers. Currently, EA has been filling the headlines with the controversial way it handled microtransactions for Star Wars: Battlefront II. The whole situation could become a defining moment for the future of games, and stories like George Fan's may just tip the scales against in-game purchases.