Cost per player - $10 per session.
Not bad, but would you pay $10 per game session?
You are not doing this with your family tho; Its just you (unless you spend double, triple, quadruple, + to play together as a family). Also, you don't have the flexibility to spend that money in other ways month to month. The price itself isnt steep, but locking it up every month is a factor.$40-$60 is a dinner out or movie with the family. It's not a lot.
It's not a contract. You aren't forced to play month in and month out at that price. If it becomes too much, you back out.You are not doing this with your family tho; Its just you (unless you spend double, triple, quadruple, + to play together as a family). Also, you don't have the flexibility to spend that money in other ways month to month. The price itself isnt steep, but locking it up every month is a factor.
You could pretty easily triple up on the weekends.As someone who has been a player in paid online games in the past, I can say that the economics IRL doesn't often work out as well is it would look on paper. There are several reasons for this.
1) Scheduling: on weekdays people are realistically only going to want to play in the evenings. So unless you have a multi-continent client base (and some Pro DMs do) you are probably only going to get one session per day on weekdays, MAYBE able to double up on weekends. So you are unlikely to see a 40 (paid) hour week.
I used to teach English overseas and I can confirm that reusing lessons is the way everyone goes.I suspect, although it's not spelled out in the Polygon article, that a lot of these pro DMs are recycling the same content over and over again, so they get a lot more out of those prep hours than an amateur DM would, who's unlikely to run a given adventure for different groups more than once or twice, especially in the same month.
In Australia we don't have the medical insurance issue and can run as a Sole Trader, so no double tax. But the challenge here would be finding enough of an audience in the time zone, or doing weird hours to work with US/UK time zones.45k isn't terrible money, but it isn't all that great when you consider that you're self employed (which means you have to pay your own taxes, including double social security because your employer is normally required to pay half) and you're not getting medical insurance (which is quite expensive). At 8-10 four hour games per week plus prep, you're probably looking at a 40+ hour work week even if you are able to reuse a lot of material. If you can't reuse much material (running West Marches or something and the groups are running in different directions) then you might be looking at 60-80 hours.
That said, if you love DMing (which many people do), there's a lot to be said for doing what you love.