Quake Champions, the latest installment in the shooter franchise, was first unveiled at E3 2016. The game was said to be focusing on fast-paced multiplayer, and is being designed to cash in on the burgeoning e-sports industry.
How the game will actually play out, however, was previously unknown, save for the fact that characters will come with special abilities similar to Blizzard's Overwatch. In an interview with Polygon, Quake Champions creative director Tim Willits finally revealed the business model of the upcoming title.
'Quake Champions' Free-To-Play, With For-Pay Option
In the interview, Willits said that Quake Champions players will be able to play a character named Ranger for free. Ranger is the lead character of the first Quake and is prominently featured in Quake 3: Arena.
If players would like to gain access to the other champions of the game, they have two options. The first option is to purchase the Champion Pack, which would allow them to play as Ranger and all other characters in the game. The price of the Champion Pack has not yet been revealed, but it will signify how much the full-price version of Quake Champions would be as it opens up all characters immediately and without limitations.
The second option for players is to use the in-game currency that they accumulate in Quake Champions, called favor, to be able to unlock other characters to use, but they would only be available for a limited period of time. Similar to the price of the Champion Pack, how long players will be able to use characters unlocked using favor is not yet known.
According to Willits, the for-pay option is for the Quake fans, as they are fine with purchasing the Champion Pack to get the full version of Quake Champions. The free-to-play option, meanwhile, is to attract players to try the game out, especially for regions outside of North America and Western Europe where the Quake franchise already has a massive presence.
The for-pay and free-to-play versions of the game will all be sharing the same maps, with players to compete within the same brackets. The only difference between the two versions of Quake Champions is how players will be able to access characters aside from Ranger.
Is This A Good Business Model For 'Quake Champions'?
Using for-pay and free-to-play models for Quake Champions comes with the advantages that have been mentioned, and in addition, the setup will keep the playing field even. This is a problem in most free-to-play games that offer additional content for free, as pay-to-win players are able to amass too much power for free-to-play gamers to keep up with them.
Willits said that favor will be easy to earn, and in addition to being used to temporarily unlock characters, can also be spent on backpacks. With backpacks, players will be able to accept rune challenges, and once these challenges are completed, allow them to earn reliquaries. Opening reliquaries will reveal new characters to use and character skins to wear.