There is a major shift these days, seeing mainstream AAA titles popping up as free-to-play online games - and continuing to enjoy marked success.
Instead, it's all about Ghost Recon Online, a third-person, cover-based tactical multiplayer shooter for PC. The game is currently in development at Ubisoft Singapore, and is due to launch closed beta in just a few short months.
Hugues Ricour, senior producer at Ubisoft explains:
"Ghost Recon Online takes the best attributes of the Ghost Recon game franchise and brings them online, making the experience of being a Ghost accessible to millions of new players and fans. This game was designed from the start to be a free-to-play experience. Our development teams are dedicated to making Ghost Recon Online a truly unique, top-quality online title.
“For Ubisoft, delivering games as a service means offering fans the opportunity to stay connected to their favourite gaming worlds, to participate in fan-based communities and play with millions of peers from around the world."
Yves Guillemot, chief executive officer at Ubisoft agrees:
"The online market is an exciting new frontier for video games and for gamers.
"With Ghost Recon Online, and other major upcoming projects, Ubisoft is creating online experiences that allow our fans to stay connected to their favourite brands and to continually receive new content and gameplay. This direct link with our fans will allow us to create new and ever better experiences for them."
Ubisoft is promising the most "social, connected and customisable" Ghost Recon experience to date. Choose from three different classes, customise your weapons, check out cutting-edge military technology and share your intel with teammates.
The game is backed by a full set of services (by which we mean regular updates and community events), and also features customised content based on what the community wants and doesn't want.
Facing the inevitable backlash for being "simply" a free-to-play title, Ghost Recon Online is already looking pretty awesome, and the game's artistic endeavours rival the quality of contemporary retail games.
...as always, if you want the shiniest toys, you will have to pay for them yourself, but the rest of the game is free to access, free to play, and free to win.
Stick around, gamers, there's plenty more where this came from!
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Jimmy the Geek