EA has taken some of the best elements of previous Battlefield games and fused them together for its newest free-to-play experience.
Following on from its success with the cartoony third person shooter Battlefield Heroes, EA is once again diving into the waters of free-to-play games with Battlefield Play4Free, a realistic, team-based military shooter, designed to run in a browser.
Battlefield P4F takes some of the maps of 2005's Battlefield 2, tweaks them to run better on lower spec computers, and then fuses them with weapons, factions and classes of Battlefield: Bad Company 2. Players will also be able to pilot some fairly impressive military hardware, like helicopters, jets, and tanks. EA says that it is working of making a lot of "cool connections" between Battlefield P4F, Battlefield Heroes and the upcoming Battlefield 3, and suggests that anyone planning on getting BF3 would be well served by getting into Battlefield P4F as soon as possible.
The game will be supported by microtransactions, much in the same way that Battlefield Heroes is, but EA recognizes that the majority of players aren't going to buy anything. "Five per cent of the audience buys stuff. 95 per cent of people never spend any money at all," explained Ben Cousins, head of Battlefield developer DICE's free-to-play division Easy Studios. "Those guys fund the experience for everyone else. It's a classic free-to-play business model, which we're really comfortable with and we've got really good at now."
The closed beta for Battlefield P4F starts on November 30th, and EA is accepting applications right now on the game's website. There's no word when EA plans to fully launch the game, although an open beta is scheduled for early next year.