Electronic Arts Gearing Up For Battlefield V Microtransactions In January 2019

“Microtransaction” is often considered a dirty word in the gaming community. Several developers have come under fire for unfriendly, and even predatory, practices. However, the controversy surrounding microstransactions will not prevent Electronic Arts from incorporating them into its games. Battlefield V will include microtransactions this upcoming January.

According to a recent Amazon store listing, the microtransactions should be live January 18th, 2019. Players can already pre-order the “Battlefield Currency” for their Xbox One game. Prices range from $4.99 USD for 500 currency to $49.99 USD for 6,000 currency.

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The Battlefield Currency can be used to purchase cosmetic items, and can never be used to “get anything that gives you an unfair gameplay advantage.” EA did not initially include microtransactions because they wanted “players to get hands-on experience with their Company, the progression system, and earning Company Coin before introducing premium currency.” Battlefield V will still include Company Coin that can be used to purchase weapons and vehicle specializations. This currency can only be earned in-game through Career progression, Daily Missions, and some Special Assignments.

EA will also be launching their Battlefield V Firestorm battle royale mode in March. Sixteen teams of four will fight it out until one team remains standing. The map will include destructible buildings, weapons, and vehicles. Combined Arms co-op missions are slated to make an appearance in 2019 as well. All of these updates will be free to players.

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Perhaps these upcoming changes will persuade more players to purchase the game, as Battlefield V sales have been lower than anticipated. The game’s price was slashed by 50% a mere two weeks after launch. The meager sales may partly be a consequence of the game’s controversial trailer. Many people were frustrated by the historical inaccuracy promoted in the game. EA chief creative officer Patrick Söderlund responded, “Accept it, or don’t buy the game”.

Gamers may also be wary after the Star Wars Battlefront II loot box fiasco. Many players complained that the progression system of the game encouraged them to spend their real money on loot boxes. Some also feared that the prospect of mystery in-game items encouraged gambling. The developers eventually modified and even eliminated some of the microtransactions, but the damage was already done. United States Senator Chris Lee of Hawaii even proposed a bill to prohibit loot boxes. The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is currently looking into the issue and may decide that microtransactions require additional government oversight. Hopefully EA has learned from their past mistakes and the launch of their new currency and modes will go smoothly.
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