During the Battlefield V reveal event yesterday, developer DICE confirmed that the game will not have a Premium Pass. Instead of paid-for DLC, the game would instead feature live events that everyone can participate in. While many welcomed the decision, saying that it would mean that friend groups are no longer split in two, others wondered how the game’s post-launch content would be supported.
One of the biggest concerns that players had was that Battlefield V would feature loot boxes. Loot boxes have proven incredibly lucrative for gaming companies, with another EA-published shooter, Star Wars Battlefront 2, causing controversy when it included the business model. But when asked about Battlefield V and loot boxes by Kotaku, a representative for EA responded in an email, saying that “I can confirm that there are no loot boxes.”
The reason that loot boxes caused so much controversy when included in Battlefront 2, as well as other titles such as Middle-earth: Shadow of War and Overwatch, is because some consider the mechanic to be a sanitized form of gambling.
Several gambling authorities and legislators from around have agreed with this position and have introduced new laws to combat loot boxes. Recently, Belgium confirmed that it would be considering criminal prosecution against companies that have featured loot boxes in their games. As such, EA and DICE’s decision to leave loot boxes out of Battlefield V means that the game will avoid the wrath of gamers and authorities too.
However, the lack of loot boxes means that questions about the game’s monetization methods are still left unanswered. While previous rumors did suggest that the game will be supported through the sale of cosmetic skins and the reveal trailer did hint at some cosmetic items (specifically, face paints), DICE has yet to confirm this. There’s rarely such a thing as a free lunch and it’s unlikely that the live events and post-launch content will be offered up with no way to fund it.
Whatever methods EA and DICE are using to make money from the game even after the initial purchase price, fans shouldn’t expect its monetization to impact gameplay. DICE has stated that Battlefield V will not be pay to win, so anything that fans are able to spend money on in the game will not give them a discernible gameplay advantage over others.
Battlefield V is set to release on October 19, 2018 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
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