APB Payment Model, Release Date, Pre-Order Bonuses Revealed

By Alice O'Connor, Apr 30, 2010 7:00am PDT Realtime Worlds' cops vs. robbers MMO APB will run under a pay-as-you-play payment model when it launches on June 29, publisher EA announced today.

Fifty hours of playtime is included with the $50 full game, which will run down as players enagage in Grand Theft Auto-style shenanigans in APB's 'Action' districts. Once their time has run out, players can pony up $6.99 for an extra twenty hours' playtime. The game's combat-free 'Social' districts will not drain players' time at all.

Alternatively, players can simply pay $9.99 for thirty days of unlimited play--with discounted ninety- and 180-day packages on offer--similar to a regular MMO subscription or apparently even pay for their game time with earned virtual currency.

"We wanted to provide a simple and flexible way for occasional and core players alike to pay for their play without being financially tethered to the game," explained Realtime Worlds founder David Jones. "The model also provides an opportunity for customers to subsidize their costs by leveraging their talent or market savvy in the 'points' Marketplace. Highly talented players could potentially even play for free in this way."

APB will be released for PC on June 29 in North America, July 1 in mainland Europe and July 2 in the UK. Pre-ordering provides the bonuses of exclusive in-game cars, clothing and emotes--pictured above--as well as 'APB VIP' early access plus access to the 'Key to the City' demo.

There's still no word on the once-planned Xbox 360 release, a subject which Realtime Worlds has been quiet on for quite some time.

The following pair of short trailers from EA's European wing show off the pre-order bonus items in-game and seem to indicate that, in Europe at least, they might be split between 'standard' and 'exclusive' editions.

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21 Threads | 73 Comments

  • I approve entirely.

    They are giving us choices, which is something everyone usually likes to have.

    So it sounds like it only uses playtime when you're actually out *playing* and shooting people, not when you are just hanging out, chatting and putting a group together (and maybe trading? I dunno what all is in the social zones).

    Plus having an option to buy time with in-game points is a nice bonus. I don't expect it'll be very easy to fully pay for the time that way, but it's good to have an option for people who want to do that.

    Now let me into the beta so I can see if it's worth getting at all. ;)

  • I really like this.

    My main gripe at the moment with MMO's for more casual peeps like me, is that you constantly feel like you should be playing it, so that yuo're getting your money's worth, even when you dont fancy it.

    This way, I can play when I want, and if i take a few weeks out, I'm not throwing money down the toilet.

    But, I also like the traditional option for when I fancy blasting through some hours.

    Along with the free social areas, all thats left is for the game to actually be worth paying money for! Certainly peaked my interest now though! :D