Bless Online Steam Early Access begins May 2018, is Buy-to-Play

Bless Online Steam Early Access

Update: The new Bless Online website is live with confirmation of the buy-to-play business model.

If you're expecting Bless Online, then I have great news for you: Steam Early Access is coming in May 2018. And it will be buy-to-play, so forget about getting your hands on it for free.

The Early Access news are out thanks to a new cinematic trailer that you can watch right after this post. It doesn't show anything that you haven't seen before, so color me not excited. As for the buy-to-play business model reveal, it comes courtesy of Bless Source, which adds the following statement from Ki Won Lee, CEO of Neowiz, and Sungjin Ko, Executive Producer:

“It’s been a long time coming, but we truly believe the best version of Bless Online is finally almost ready to hit Steam,” said Ki Won Lee, CEO of Neowiz. “This an MMORPG unlike any other, completely re-engineered, and we can’t wait to finally open the doors and let players start their journeys.”

“We heard our players, and we’ve made our decision. We chose Buy to Play as our monetization model because we truly believe it’s the best option for our players, while making sure you don’t need to maintain a subscription to keep up with the constant stream of new content we’ll be adding to Bless.” said Sungjin Ko, Executive Producer of Neowiz Bless Studio.

Oddly enough, Bless Source mentions that this info is visible in the new Bless Online website, which should open tomorrow, according to a post on Steam dating from March 15. However, the Bless site seems to be already open as of today, and I couldn't find any mention of the business model.

Anyway, this doesn't mean a thing and I'm pretty sure that Neowiz really went for a buy-to-play business model for a game that is free-to-play everywhere else. Most players seem to like this choice, as if having to buy a game beforehand ever prevented any game whatsoever from adding pay-to-win mechanics sooner or later.

As soon as this is all officially confirmed, we'll have to file Bless Online under “not touching it again”.

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