Syncaine has a good argument against the 3 monther. It’s a much better take than Keen’s in terms of clarity.
The argument stems from the argument of choice, at the core. If a game is designed to attract the generic masses and the generic masses are nothing but sheep, then you’re going to have a problem. TOR designed their game for the casual crowd (clearly) and they came and went. WoW designed their core game around the dedicated crowd, they came and stayed for many years. The farther along WoW trends towards the casual crowd, the more they alienate the core.
Can there still be games developed with a longer than 3 month time span? Certainly but not in the F2P market. The F2P market is designed 100% around the casual player. Those games that do offer a sub model in addition to F2P however, are running a 2 tier system. This is a topic for another time though.
RIFT is probably the only game in the past 5 years that targeted a core group of players, a casual group and provided the content for both on a regular basis. Actually, it’s the only sub game that has ever done this, to my knowledge.
Are we going to find games that cater to a core group? Are there any of those people left that are not currently invested in an existing game? I wonder.