It is easy! Just follow the steps below:
- Don't spend any time on tutorials and documentation: Figuring out the game serves as "content".
- Sparse everything apart so that traveling serves as "content".
- Don't include quests; you don't want to pay for writers. Fill the world with mobs, but make the drop rates and rewards low so that people will continue to grind them for as long as possible.
- Include many trivial but mandatory (or strongly encouraged) attrition mechanics such as eating, drinking and long term buffs. Ensuring their supply will keep players busy when they are not grinding... or traveling.
- Make everything as difficult and as high maintenance as possible: Nothing should be easy, and nothing should be automatic so the players have to be glued on the keyboard in order to make something happen. If you want to go somewhere, you have to stay there for the whole 20 minutes pressing "W"-key and following the road. It is "content" after all.
- Keep the respawn rates for bosses low, so that waiting for them will serve as "content". Same applies for fishing.
I think it goes without saying that the preferred payment model would be subscription.
Can you come up with more?
(And if you haven't figured it out. The above is criticism.)
I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky