If you’ve been waiting for Battleborn to go free-to-play so you can try it out, don’t hold your breath. Back in September, Randy Pitchford said that just wasn’t going to happen, and it doesn’t look like he’s changed his mind at all in the months that have followed.
Gearbox are catering for new players though, just not in the “here have our game for free” sort of way. The upcoming Winter Update for example, is filled with neat changes and features that newcomers are sure to appreciate (via PC Gamer):
- All 25 Core Characters Unlocked! 25 badass playable characters, no waiting! You’re eager to find your favorite, so get to it! With this update, the core 25 characters will be unlocked for all players after completing the Prologue.
- What about the character unlock challenges? These challenges now award a brand new skin upon completion! We’ve also adjusted several challenges to be more attainable.
- Main Quests – Story Mode
- Story Mode missions will have more guides and tools to lead your through various areas of the game. The Credit rewards have also been boosted to help you get an early edge on loot packs
- Two New Training Modes
- Incursion Tutorial: Build up your PVP skills and learn the key elements of competitive play in Battleborn. Your first play-through is solo, but this practice mode can be repeated with groups of up to three players.
- Dojo: Take each and every Battleborn hero for a test drive! Learn how to slice, dice, blast, smash, and rocket your way through waves of minions.
That first feature is pretty damn amazing. All 25 core characters right off the bat? Smart move Gearbox, smart move.
If you’re a veteran of the first-person MOBA, don’t worry, you haven’t been forgotten. The Winter Update has cool changes for players like you too:
- User Interface Changes: Battleborn’s user interface gets a major facelift. Cleaner, more vibrant, and much easier to find the information you need most. You’ll see UI changes throughout Battleborn, from the starting screen, to the Command center, character select, and even some menu changes.
- Draft Mode: This is one of the most exciting new additions! In Draft Mode, teams and players take turns picking and banning characters trying to find the perfect match-ups and counters for what the other team is choosing.
- Introducing Daily Quests: The action doesn’t end when you take down Rendain. Check back daily for new objectives and rewards across both Story Mode and Competitive Multiplayer Mode.
- Command Rank and Character Rank Increase: Keep on growing your Command and Character ranks! We pushed the cap to 150 for Command Rank, and rank 20 for each character, with all-new rewards!
- Updated In-game Economy: We’ve overhauled the Credits system and how loot packs are made available, particularly in Competitive Multiplayer matches. Credits will now accumulate faster in public PVP matches, making it easier to grab more loot packs from the Marketplace. But not for leavers – they are out of luck and will not receive any rewards. You see, nobody likes a quitter.
- Loot Packs: All loot pack variations will still drop in Story Mode missions, but only one type of loot pack will be available in the Marketplace: The Core Pack. The Core Pack has better odds for higher rarity gear and has a chance to drop any skin or taunt previously available in Faction packs.
- Boosts: A bigger variety of Boosts will become available for Platinum in the marketplace.
- PS4 Pro Support: Battleborn will also support PS4 Pro! PS4 Pro players will be able to choose between 1080p at 60fps or 4K at 30fps.
Overall, the Winter Update sounds excellent. Is it enough to bring new players to the game though? I’m not entirely sure. A part of me does still think that going the free-to-play route is a very viable option for boosting numbers.
Veterans at the very least, have a lot to look forward to. There are some pretty big changes here that should make Battleborn a better experience overall.
Last Updated: December 7, 2016