The sad reality of the industry dictates that people always wonder one thing about any new upcoming AAA release- how it’s going to be monetized. If it’s not DLC, it’s loot boxes, and if it isn’t that, it’s cosmetic microtransactions- but the question always persists. One game that’s answering that question in refreshingly fair ways is Codemasters’ upcoming GRID.
We recently sat down for an interview with Christopher Smith, the game’s director, and among the many questions we ended up asking him about the upcoming racer was whether or not there would be any microtransactions. His answer was surprisingly emphatic, with Smith declaring that he “hates” microtransactions. Following that, he went on to describe an interesting and what’s sure to be a very popular monetization model with fans, where those who don’t want to purchase the game’s DLC but don’t want to get locked out of multiplayer as a result can “rent” said DLC- with money earned through the game itself.
“No, I hate microtransactions,” said Smith, when asked if there’s going to be any microtransactions in the upcoming racer. “Here’s one thing I can say, we’re also not going to be charging for tracks. Any new track that comes out everyone gets. The great reason why you want to buy the DLC: There’s new cars and new careers. New career has new rewards, new unlocks. So there’s a lot of cool stuff to get and play. But if you and me are playing, and we’re friends, and you don’t have the DLC, you can go into any new race modes, and any new classes.”
“If you don’t have the car you have to rent one,” he continued. “The renting essentially reduces the money you get from the race. You always get more money in the race than the cost of rent. So you’ll never be negative. So what that allows you to do is still play. You won’t have a chance to change the livery. If you want to have a choice of all the cars, and liveries, and rewards, and do the new career for that race mode, you need the DLC.
“But if you want to play with your friends we’ll never ward you from tracks. To me that’s our way of saying— In addition we’ll be adding new features in race modes to the game. A post release mode that we’re happy to announce today is split screen mode coming after release for everyone. Again, you have to buy the DLC. I have a three-year-old daughter and I want to play side-by-side with her. It’s really big for us that if you buy it we’re going to be supporting you. But microtransactions. No, no, no, no, no, no, no.”
Not including microtransactions, on top of having what’s an unusual but a very fair DLC model, is sure to prove very popular with the game’s playerbase. It remains to be seen just how it’s all implemented in the final product, of course, but it definitely seems like Codemasters are on the right track.
We should find out soon enough. GRID is due out on September 13 for the PS4, Xbox One, and PC. In the meantime, check out some of its gameplay footage through here.