E3: Blade & Soul Business Model Revealed

We spoke with NCSoft's Coutant & Dariani about Blade & Soul's monetization.

Last month, NCSoft announced that Blade & Soul would be coming to the west, with closed beta anticipated to begin this fall and releasing this winter. During E3 we took the time to catch up with Producer Nicolas Coutant and NCSoft Community Director Omeed Dariani to find out more details about the F2P MMO's business model.

Blade & Soul players will have unrestricted access with no content gating, including no charging for expansions, DLCs, and so on, as the developers want to avoid segregating the playerbase. Regular content updates will roll out to keep players busy, with three of the six chapters planned to be available at launch.

The store will feature only convenience items such as experience potions, food, or cosmetic items, which could all be purchased for the NCSoft NCoin currency. A special free currency will be available as well, which can be earned in-game and spent in the in-game store. Most items will be available in both stores, allowing players to have versatility of choice in how to acquire them, but a few select items may end up being exclusive to a single store.

A premium membership will be available in the NCoin store and grants 30-days at a time. By spending either NCoin or the special free currency, players can progress through various membership tiers. These tiers can be gained and retained regardless of membership status, though benefits cannot be taken advantage of during an inactive membership period. The tiers will grant various boosts or special effects such as Windwalk to those with an active membership.

Digital pre-order packs are planned for Blade & Soul, but specific details are still being ironed out at this time. NCSoft plans to have three tiers which will all offer guaranteed Closed Beta access.

Thanks to Nicolas and Omeed for speaking with us at E3!

Ann "Cyliena" Hosler, Managing Editor


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