While in-game purchases are more commonly seen as in-game annoyances, pay-to-win schemes or just paying to rebalance a bad game
, French game merchandizers FabZat
believe that in-app monetization can be successful, if it provides a real value to players.
Their new service is based on 3D printing of personalized game items, purchased from within the game. FabZat’s service blends in-game customization with the speed and accessibility of 3D printing. Gamers are able to purchase their character or other in-world items, from within the game. These items are then printed on a powerful, hi-res 3D printer, then finished by hand and finally shipped anywhere in the world. Check out some of the game toys in their gallery .
The option to purchase character collectibles is currently in action in AstÃ?Â©rix: Megaslap and Geek Resort, but FabZat hopes to offer their technology to other game developers as a turnkey service. FabZat also offers other in-game merchandizing, like game characters on T-shirts or phone cases, but I think it’s the application of 3D printing technology that makes their service stand out. There are already a lot of ways to get your favorite game avatar on a t-shirt, but I can’t think of another way to get a game character toy right from the game. FabZat’s goal is to partner their merchandising services with many different game studios and publishers, as an embedded shop with simple setup, so that game publishers can easily add this in-app purchase system.
FabZat is one of the presenters in Startup Alley in this week’s TechCrunch Disrupt in Europe. Their planned business model is a profit-share with the game makers, instead of a purchase fee for the publisher.