Redlynx's new free to play version of Trials won't let you play for two solid hours without chucking a dollar or two Redlynx's way. The title, which is aiming to retain its 60 frames per second across iOS and Android devices, will focus on a story driven campaign that players ride through, rather than simply competing abstract challenges for those shiney gold trophies.
To the game's lead designer, Justin Swan, restricting a player's playtime is a preferable way to monetise a game compared to paying for advantages, which the game "absolutely" doesn't have.
"There's absolutely no pay to win. You cannot purchase anything that's going to make you have a higher chance of victory that a player can't."
However that does mean that, "You're not going to be able to sit and binge for two hours straight on the game without running out of fuel. You'll just have to wait to get enough fuel."
The game's structure is centered around your hero, who awakes with amnesia, presumably due to all the hits to the head he took in previous Trials titles, chasing after a mysterious antagonist. After you escape your initial cave based predicament, you'll gain access to a world map and accept quests from people to ride across the land.
As per the tradition of a Quest, once you finish every race in the game, you'll be rewarded with loot based on how well you do. Swan explained that "We're tried to make it so that if you're a very skilled player, you're going to be able to get through the game and upgrade your bike [faster] than a non-skilled player".
As a side note, this has always seemed like one of the weirdest elements of game design. Surely people who are finding your levels easiest should have their difficulty scaled up, rather than further down compared to people who are struggling. If you do that however people might intentional play badly to game the system to reward them, as part of that intrinsically human quest for the path of least resistance. A tricky problem indeed.
If you're one of those not too great players who can't afford upgrades as quickly though, you can purchase them alongside more playtime using real money.
Trials Frontier is due out on iOS and Android sometime next year.
Thanks Digital Spy.