Blacklight: Retribution enters open beta, players needn’t worry about “paying to win”

By Stephany Nunneley
28 February 2012 20:58 GMT

Perfect World has announced Blacklight Retribution has gone into open beta.

The beta includes three multiplayer maps which will be rolled out during the beta, starting today with Vortex on pre-built characters. Players will also be able to try out data nodes such as new socketing and crafting systems.

“We plan to have an actual release from open beta, but in open beta, anyone can now play the game,” executive producer Andy Kipling told Neowin. “We are working on developing a steady stream of new content, gameplay and systems. We already have a huge list of things we want to do, plus things from our users that they (and us) want to do.

“There is a lot more coming. We will be releasing new game modes, weapons, maps, features and systems, and of course bug fixes and balance fixes. Again, reiterating the “games as a service” model, we are all about creating longevity for Blacklight Retribution. Therefore, we will be doing whatever we can do to help improve the game and the player’s experience.”

Kipling also discussed the differences between the free-to-play shooter’s free content and what is included with microtransactions.

“A lot of people are extremely concerned about any sort of game that is free-to-play, because they think that they have to pay in order to win and stay competitive,” he said. “That is not the goal here.

“From our perspective, the logic is pretty simple and straightforward: Blacklight Retribution is a multiplayer game. With any multiplayer game, you need to have people online and playing in order to keep the game alive and running. Of all your players, you can expect that the great majority, say 90%, will never spend any money on the game. Given that 90% of players is our bread and butter, those are the people that we need to make sure are happy and content to play the game. Because if they are not happy, they will quit and go someplace else. And then, at that point, you are going to alienate the 90% of your fan base and when they leave, the 10% who may actually be spending money will also leave.

“There goes any money you were trying to make and that spells the end of the game. Our goal is to ensure that the game is not a pay to win game – from a microtransactions standpoint, all or nearly all functional items in game will be able to be acquired without spending a dime. You can earn the items simply through playing the game. There will be items that you can shortcut by spending money, but there will also be items that you can’t get except by playing the game. Lastly, as a first person shooter, it is imperative for us that the game remains balanced regardless of whether you are spending money or not.”

You can still sign up for the beta here.

The F2P MMOFPS from Zombie Studios launches sometime this year.

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