Social Gaming Platform Mobage-town Gets Monthly Price Plan For Virtual Items

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Earlier this week, Japanese mobile social gaming juggernaut DeNA added a new pricing plan to its super-popular Mobage-town platform (which currently boasts 22 million users): users can now pay for virtual items through a monthly pricing plan.
This first so-called Premium Course on Mobage consists of two offerings, one for the hit game “Kaitou Royale”, and another one for avatars (by which each Mobage member must be represented).
Users subscribing for the first course can choose between four options (monthly cost: US$6 and up) to get items for use in Kaitou Royale, and what’s interesting is that some items in the game can’t be obtained in any other way. Monthly prices for the avatar-related plan, dubbed Aisatsu Premium Course, start at $2.40 (six options).
The obvious motivation for DeNA for adding subscription plans to per-item purchases (which are still possible for both Kaitou Royale and avatars) is to make spending money on Mobage easier for its members. The Premium Course is only accessible to NTT Docomo and KDDI au customers though: SoftBank subscribers and those visiting Mobage through their smartphones are left out at this point.


    1. If you spend over $100 every month, I don’t think $2-5 will make big difference. With the small amount of money, you may take some advantages (well, everything is virtual though). For DeNA, and any other service providers, subscription income is always better because it reduces their worry on sales change.

    2. It depends on how you use Mobage-town. The platform is known to have a big number of users spending even hundreds of dollars each month.
      For these hard users, adding a subscription plan on top of their case-by-case purchases is probably a nice option. And DeNA is very clever in offering items you can only get when you subscribe, which again is clearly targeted at the hard user segment (regular users won’t care).

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