The upcoming FIFA Volta aims to bring new players to the franchise by introducing a story mode and street mode that will harken back to FIFA gameplay fans have wanted for a while. Now, EA has confirmed that the upcoming game mode will feature no microtransactions.
This will come as a relief to long-time FIFA players and to series newcomers who have familiarity with EA’s frustrating practices related to requiring players to choose between buying loot boxes or making unhealthy time commitments.
EA has come under fire multiple times in recent years over their egregious use of microtransactions. The issue came to a head when Star Wars Battlefront 2 featured many pay-to-win microtransactions and locked famous heroes behind tens of hours of grinding. Fans who couldn’t afford to invest any further in the game felt betrayed, that the time and money they had put in didn’t purchase them the whole package.
FIFA fans at the time saw this backlash and voiced their frustration as well. FIFA had a lot of the same issues, and EA wasn’t listening to their concerns. All of this lead to an international conversation about the connection between loot boxes and gambling, which eventually resulted in Belgium declaring loot boxes illegal.
Now, companies have taken a step back, and began to evaluate other ways to support big franchises. According to Activision and Infinity Ward, the upcoming Call of Duty: Modern Warfare will feature no season pass. All maps and additions to the game will be available for free.
Now EA has begun to make similar changes. Not only will FIFA Volta not have microtransations, but the game will also feature no season pass. The company stated that changes to FIFA content will come on a month to month basis, and will include new challenges and new cosmetics, all for free.
This news should excite fans, not just of FIFA, but of all game franchises that have in the past offered mysterious season passes and mountains of microtransactions. It sounds like companies have heard the loud voices of frustrated fans.
However, that optimism should come with a bit of caution. With the cost of development rising, companies will have to find that lost revenue somewhere, especially if executives at places like Activision and EA keep their high salaries. Many companies have already resorted to complicated special editions and pre-order bonuses that allow players to pay extra for things like earlier access. While these are still optional, they speak to a possible future where an initial game purchase could cost more than $60.
FIFA 20 will release on September 27, 2019 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.