Free to play game works around Microsoft’s Xbox Live restrictions.
When World of Tanks, the hit free to play PC game, was announced for the Xbox 360 at Microsoft’s E3 conference, there was probably a general question regarding how Microsoft would handle this game that went through the audience. After all, World of Tanks will be played online using Xbox Live, and Xbox Live itself puts online play behind a paygate, which runs contrary to the notion of a free to play game.
Well, as it turns out, they seem to have reached what might be described as an uneasy compromise- Xbox Live Gold members get to play the game for free, while Silver members get access to a free trial for a limited period of time. according to Polygon. In game, players will apparently be able to earn gold to purchase premium World of Tanks accounts.
According to Wargaming.net CEO Victor Kislyi, these rather complicated and contrived payment mechanisms are a result of Microsoft’s Xbox Live regulations, that prevented the studio from offering premium accounts as a regular, paid subscription.
“Microsoft has their own rules [for] membership subscriptions, so [there are] certain things we could not break,” said Kislyi in an interview with Polygon. “They cannot just drop everything.”
So by offering players the in game gold (which they can buy with real world money), and then using that gold to purchase items, the company has attempted to work around these restrictions.
World of Tanks hits the Xbox 360 later this year.