Gaming company Shanda (Nasdaq: SNDA) announced yesterday evening that the game Aion will make use of a time-based payment model that will take effect April 16 with the release of the all-new commercial version 1.0 of "Yaosai Pan Long" (unofficial translation: The Coiled Stronghold).
Shanda said that following the announcement on the evening of April 9 that game-play would be billed by time spent playing, several hundred thousand gamers increased their account balances.
RMB 1 equates to 100 Shanda game points, each of which is worth 75 seconds of game-play. RMB 1 therefore purchases 125 minutes of Aion game-play.
According to an industry insider, Aion's peak concurrent user (PCU) total reached 250,000 in the first two hours of open beta testing. Aion began open beta testing at 8 am on April 8.