If you had a job as a video game reporter, you'd not be able to inhale and exhale your way through a day without sniffing the excitement powerful people in the gaming industry have for "free to play" games. These are games that are free for anyone to start playing but then require you to pay either to get ahead more quickly or to access a lot of the cooler stuff in the games.
Free-to-play is hot in PC gaming (yes, EA public relations man, I will try your free-to-play games soon!). Free-to-play is hot on iOS (have you seen the charts?).
Free-to-play already showed up on PlayStation 3 in the form of DC Universe Online and Free Realms.
Microsoft's putting out a free-to-play Xbox Live Arcade game called Happy Wars later this year. This is a cartoonish, multiplayer competitive brawler whose previously most-notable fact was that, when one side wins, the other side's characters get tied up on stakes and can have stuff thrown at them.