In a surprising announcement, Electronic Arts confirmed over the weekend that Star Wars: Battlefront II will not feature a season pass.
Speaking with Mashable, creative director Bernd Diemer stated that the development team is not interested “to segment out community” between those who pay and those who do not. Instead, Star Wars: Battlefront II will feature “something different” as far as its post-release content support is concerned.
“I cannot talk about the specifics of this, but we have something different in mind that will allow you to play longer, be [more] invested in the game without having a fragmented community,” said Diemer.
To better explain how a season pass can prove harmful for a community, let us look at the recently released Battlefield 1. With new multiplayer maps being added with the release of each expansion pack, servers are often updated to the newer content. This essentially locks out those who are not interested in paying extra. While there are hundreds of servers to choose from, it can be frustrating to see most of them, or the favorites, running only the newly released maps. Hence, how the community is split up, which hurts the game’s active player-base.
However, EA has been turning over a new leaf with recent releases. Both Mass Effect: Andromeda and Titanfall 2 are without any traditional season passes. Without any details we can only assume that the post-release content of Star Wars: Battlefront II will be available for free to everyone. Revenue is likely to be generated through the availability of optional content such as cosmetic upgrades through microtransactions.
“We decided on that, and it’s one of those difficult decisions because it has so many implications all around,” added Diemer. “When we looked at the way Battlefront had evolved over its lifetime, with the DLC and everything, we decided, ‘You know what? For this type of game, season passes are not the best thing. We need to [take it apart] and come up with something better.”
Star Wars: Battlefront II is scheduled for an official release on November 17 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Members of EA Access and Origin Access will have the opportunity to try the game out from November 9. As always, there will be a specific time limit to how much you can play during the early access period.