Subscription or online fees for massively multiplayer online games are not at all uncommon. Typically, these fees keep funds flowing to the game’s developer, allowing them to maintain servers and develop new content. Certain Japanese multiplayer titles, such as Monster Hunter Tri, make use of a similar model: charging players a usage fee to utilize the online content. The recently revealed Dragon Quest X is an online RPG which seems to use this model.
Titles such as Capcom’s Monster Hunter Tri and Resident Evil: Outbreak are essentially pay-to-play in Japan. However, such fees were never put into operation in NTSC and PAL regions. One might speculate that Dragon Quest X‘s publisher Square-Enix will follow Capcom’s footsteps and not issue an online fee for regions other than Japan, but only further announcements from S-E can assure western fans of this. At the moment the online fee for Dragon Quest X has not been revealed.
Dragon Quest X was unveiled on Monday for the Nintendo’s Wii and upcoming Wii U consoles, with a 2012 release date set for the Wii version. No Wii U release date has been disclosed. Square-Enix is also looking into Nintendo 3DS support for the title. Details on the game’s story are sparse, but the game will focus on five specific playable races. While the game allows for single-player progression, all gameplay elements require an internet connection and thus, will incur an online usage fee.
In related news, Square-Enix has suffered from a drop in stock following the reveal of Dragon Quest X, according to Japanese media outlet Nikkei. The company’s share value has dropped by 10% since the announcement of the title. Read a comprehensive summary of the report on Andriasang.