Next Ridge Racer is F2P
It's not strange to see a free-to-play PC or mobile title, however free-to-play on the console is something you'll rarely see, especially when the game is part of a previously successful franchise. However, Namco Bandai has recently announced that Ridge Racer Driftopia, a new Ridge Racer game, will in fact be a free to play title for the PC and PlayStation 3.
The launch is currently slated for 'later in 2013,' and although the vague date means the game could be out anywhere between next month and December, the announcement focused on the choice for free to play, and a few questions have been answered about the type of free to play model found within Ridge Racer Driftopia.
As with most free to play or 'freemium' game models, players of Ridge Racer Driftopia will be able to pay for in-game items via micro transactions, although details on the depth of the micro transactional items and the effect they have on gameplay are currently unknown.
Senior Vice President of Namco Bandai, Olivier Comte has given a little insight into why the free to play model was chosen for the new Ridge Racer title, and it feels as if it will play out like an arcade game instead of a fully-fledged retail game.
"Free-to-play is playing an increasingly important role, so it's very exciting to be bringing one of our most successful franchises to the free-to-play space for everyone to enjoy," he said.
Olivier has also mentioned in the past that a developed free to play title "can't be high quality," and it'd be surprising to see Ridge Racer Driftopia breaking that rule, mainly because the game could end up leaning towards 'pay-to-win' and the transactional aspects of the game could make Ridge Racer Driftopia feel unbalanced and restrictive to non-paying players.
Whether the game itself will be worth it is currently unknown, but if it is developed well enough, it could make itself a great experience for paying and non-paying customers, despite the controversy surrounding the free to play model.