Expect Free Realms To Make The Jump To NGP At Some Point.

The executive made the comment while answering GamesIndustry.biz on the subject of free-to-play MMOs on consoles. Having just launched Free Realms in North America, Smedley was naturally supremely positive about the prospects of the genre on both PlayStation 3 and Sony's new portable system.

"There are a lot of people out there that have, in the past, associated free-to-play with lower quality - and simply put, that's just not true any more. There are a lot of free-to-play games that are great, and I think that's going to come over to console just as well.

"With the console, we're selling to an audience that already has the PS3 obviously - and by the way not the just the PS3, but in the future I can see other devices. Sony's announced the NGP, and if that isn't a perfect machine for doing MMOs on, then I don't know what is."

Smedley added that he believes the free-to-play business model will be adopted more widely by publishers on consoles in the near future.

"So it's too soon to tell for sure but I think you're going to start seeing free-to-play gaming on console as well. People will realise that getting a lot more folk to try their games using that kind of business model will help; it'll just be in addition to the Blu-ray business model."