MechWarrior Online developer Piranha Games has insisted that the mech combat action-sim won't be "pay-2-win," provocatively explaining "why you want MechWarrior Online to be free-to-play." Piranha envisions a PC game which can track and quickly respond to problems, unbound by "content delivery limitations of a console platform."
The developer promises that the F2P model will enable live metrics, iterating updates quickly, and easily testing new content with players.
"I'm not going to lie, some things can and will allow you to acquire items faster, or even instantly with real cash," creative director Bryan Ekman confessed in a blog post. However, he insisted, buying better gear will not necessarily bring an advantage.
"We're doing away with the arms race and making BattleMechs of all shapes and sizes have a purpose and role on the battlefield," Ekman said. Scout or commander, rich or poor, in theory you can have a hoot no matter what you're piloting.
And, of course, there's the obvious benefit of not having to buy a game you may turn out not to play that much.
MechWarrior Online is slated to launch in 2012.