As part of a recent panel on paid versus free games, Epic’s Mar Rein discussed micro-transactions, budget titles, and developing for mobile platforms.

“I’d rather sell 10 million games at $25 and have a chance to sell DLC than 5 million at $50 on a disc that gets traded around. I think it’ll change, and it’ll change for the benefit of the customers. We’re definitely going to experiment with micro-transcations and lower-price games.”

Rein then elaborated, saying that he didn’t believe that downloadable games should necessarily be free.

“I’m a big proponent of AAA games. Triple-A isn’t going away, it’s going everywhere. As the quality of the games go up, the cost of the games go up, you’re going to have to monetise them better.”

I love the above statement because I love AAA titles. I also love budget titles. I don’t know which I prefer, I just know that I like both and I want them both to exist, so I’m glad to see Rein so devoted to continue producing AAA games, just as there are developers passionate about producing cheaper titles.

Rein went on to stress the important of the iPhone and iPad, calling them the “consoles of the future.” He then suggested that if mobile phone power doubled just two more times, you can play Gears of War on a mobile device.

When asked when Gears of War would become a download-only title, he said “eventually.”

[Games Industry]