More Xbox 360 microtransaction games coming, including Call of Duty Black Ops 2

In August, Microsoft announced that the first free-to-play game (with microtransaction purchases) for its Xbox 360 console would be Happy Wars from Tokyo-based Toylogic. Happy Wars, a multiplayer third person shooter with a cartoony art style, was launched for Xbox Live Arcade gamers in October. This week, Toylogic revealed that Happy Wars has now logged over two million players since going live.

The press release, via Gamasutra, would seem to prove that the free-to-play microtransaction business model for games, which first started on the PC, can continue to consoles such as the Xbox 360. Toylogic also announced a new title update for Happy Wars that goes live this week, which will include a Special Match mode where players can participate in online matches featuring different rules than the normal gameplay design.

Microsoft has plans to launch a second free-to-play game for the Xbox 360 later this year. Ascend: New Gods, which was first announced at E3 2012 last June, is being developed by Signal Studios. Unlike Happy Wars, Ascend: New Gods is being developed as an "M" rated fantasy action-RPG title. The game will also have some kind of mobile phone support as well.

Today, Activision's official community blog, One of Swords, confirmed that the Xbox 360 version of the hit shooter Call of Duty Black Ops 2 will add microtransaction items starting on Wednesday. They will include personalization packs for player weapons and more. The blog states, "At the end of the day, all of these items are completely optional, and were created for players who’ve asked for more customization options."

Source: Toylogic press release | Image via Toylogic

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Exactly, I know someone who moans about it. Then the next week I see that person ha purchased the Season Pass on Black Ops 2 which cost than he paid for the actual game...

It's so sad to have lived through the 'golden age' of gaming in the 90s, with so much anticipation and excitement for the future.

The future is now here... and it sucks. Can I have the 90s back?

We still have GOG.com
And every now and then game developers still give us gems.
Like Sins of Solar Empire, Supreme Commander, Silent Hunter 5, Tropico, KSP...

If they keep the "customization options" to cosmetic stuff only, I am fine with it...I wont pay for it, but I don't mind. If they start offering weapons for cash that give you an edge in gameplay, I am done.

shinji257 said,
If you buy/cheat your way to being 'good' you will never be that way as you might not understand how it works.

Those people who buy their 'skills' do not look at it like they. They being in the match ranking top is all they care for. The feeling of superiority they seem to get from it.

Memnochxx said,
Microtransactions, the system whereby you will be unable to compete against players willing to drop $200 on upgrades.

Yep and this is why it continues. Because people are willing to shell out the money. In the end it hurts gaming for everyone.

Memnochxx said,
Microtransactions, the system whereby you will be unable to compete against players willing to drop $200 on upgrades.

While I hate the games that provide micro-transactions, there are a few that do it right.
The ones that give people any type of advantage over others (pay to win items) is bad, it kills the game off. I think it's a last ditch attempt for a lot of companies to grab a few extra bucks from hardcore loyal fan base, and the stupid players who're willing to invest a lot of money into the game.

Cosmetic items in games, I really don't mind. They're pretty much DLC, even the ones you 'rent' (don't even get me started on that crap). Even some types of VIP/XP Bonus is OK, if the XP is ranked for others in the same level as you.

Tribes Ascend does the micro-transaction thing well. While you can buy everything in the game with money, you can unlock it regardless by playing the game. Fortunately, the guys that buy or unlock the higher gear generally get pushed into game servers with similar spec'd gear, but even then the unlocked equipment is not the type that gives people a stupid advantage because of the paper rock scissors effect right from the base game.
Another game, Global Agenda has cosmetic only items in game and a lot of people paid for them to make them stand out from others.

What worries me, is that a company like EA are more then happy to sell content after you've paid full price for the game, for things like skins, colour touch-ups on weapons, etc too. It's all about how much they can milk from you, the legit gamer who didn't pirate it and are a loyal customer.
Seems strange to be treated this way, I used to remember when buying a game meant you got free updates, that included extra maps, content, what we now call 'DLC'. I can only imagine how games will be in 4-5 years time. You buy the base game, then have to buy the single player DLC parts of the story, then you have to buy VIP DLC to play online, then you have to micro-transaction to activate individual maps. Then you have to micro-transaction to be able to use the weapons or abilities of your class.. A game is going to end up costing $200 if you want to even start playing it.

sagum said,

....
Same thing what scares me, I used to be a fanatic gamer. had loads of NES games, PSX, PS2.. but most current gen games are those I got for free with my PSN+ membership.
Few purchases turned out to be utter worthless and the DLCs are a real dealbreaker. It's bugging me in SimCity allot
I remember the Red Alert 2 1.006 update... even this centrury, simple update. added tons of maps, a dozen new game modes and a few hands full of bug fixes.
I see current games update with 1 or 2 bug fixes, and more often then not... see serious bugs stick around in games for multiple versions. Customer satisfaction seems to be unimportant nowadays.

Also I hate that games are to easy! I'm far from as good a gamer as I was a decade ago... I used to start many games on normal, some even on easy. just to get into it, get to know the game and what not... Not I automatically go for the hardest mode. Not that im that good now but games just seem to be getting duller and easier. I'm currently sitting out MAXIS to hopefully show they are still MAXIS and not some meaningless EA division.

sagum said,

I hate that video, basically he says all modern shooters are Call of Duty and Battlefield 3, and then goes on to say games were better when you just rocket jumped around maps skipping all the enemies and levels on speed. I can't stand that style of Gameplay, even avoided the later Unreal games and all the Quakes, I did play the very first Unreal back in the day and just about tolerated it. I like more down to earth slower, more realistic shooters. Rocket jumping 50 feet in the air and enemies requiring entire clips or multiple rockets to kill isnt my idea of fun. Games like ARMA 2 manage to be slower paced, hugely open and any path you could possibly take, yet they are very enjoyable to play still, games like Far Cry 2/3 are hugely open and allow you to tackle any path you want any way you want. Quake? Im going to have to rocket jump at 100mph for everything. He critisizes modern games for being linear yet Quake is just as guilty.

In summary he's an elitist dick who can't tolerate anything that isn't Quake or Unreal.

McKay said,

...

I can tell you the last minute of that video takes more skills then anything done in modern games.
I've played quake I, II, III and Unreal/UT massively, also played America's Army (ONLINE! not SF!) if you want realism games into it. And I was good at all these games, but no way I'm able to jump through levels like that. Takes really allot of practice to do such.
And he has a point, games are easy nowadays, they really are. Where are the times that you had to figure out how to do things in the game? Everything is explained, even shown to you where exactly to go, what you have to do. Hints everywhere. Man I'm noticing I'm becoming used to this simplistic form of gaming. And it sucks. In almost any modern game, everyone can climb into the top match rankings with ease. I played CoD 1 and 2 allot on LAN parties but the ones after, I skipped them all except Modern Warfare (which was absolutely horrible and not worth any money I spent on it). But I still play a game every now and then at a friends place, and more often then not find myself in the top 3 of my team. So the point of this video about gaming in general is certainly valid.

Must say I haven't looked into ARMA 2 so far, am going to now Thanks, seems interesting. I haven't been much into shooters in recent years and find myself playing Q3 based FPS mostly. And besides games my mates usually play, I dont often play FPS anymore. America's Army got ruined when the focus switched to closecombat and never really found a good replacement. But am downloading Arma II Free now

I warn you ARMA 2 is closer to a Simulator, lots of shoot outs are from hundreds of metres away, firing test shots and adjusting for bullet drop. I used to play on a server where it could hold 50 people and the enemy were hard AI who controlled the entire region. Me and 20 guys one spent 15 minutes pinned behind a compound wall waiting for a guy in an A10 to fly in and bomb the crap out of the enemy

This. Another thing that saddens me is the generations of great games going forward that will not be preservable, due to these game's dependence on server connections, micro-transactions and rumored future plans to lock games to whatever console they're first booted on. While game consoles and games are becoming more complex, advanced and realistic, they're value is dropping and becoming nothing more than product to be resold to us multiple times over. As an old-school gamer, I want nothing to do with gaming going forward of this is what we have to look forward to.

AR556 said,
This. Another thing that saddens me is the generations of great games going forward that will not be preservable, due to these game's dependence on server connections, micro-transactions and rumored future plans to lock games to whatever console they're first booted on. While game consoles and games are becoming more complex, advanced and realistic, they're value is dropping and becoming nothing more than product to be resold to us multiple times over. As an old-school gamer, I want nothing to do with gaming going forward of this is what we have to look forward to.
this^ I can't stand this always connected mentality with gaming.

AR556 said,
This. Another thing that saddens me is the generations of great games going forward that will not be preservable, due to these game's dependence on server connections, micro-transactions and rumored future plans to lock games to whatever console they're first booted on. While game consoles and games are becoming more complex, advanced and realistic, they're value is dropping and becoming nothing more than product to be resold to us multiple times over. As an old-school gamer, I want nothing to do with gaming going forward of this is what we have to look forward to.

This. I might've bought SimCity, but it saddens me i'm not holding a solid game in my hands and for now can only hope they will offer an offline option eventually (at least the moment the servers go down) but I think they will.

The DLC crap and whatever should stop, worse then the 'required' server connection in my opinion, pay for a full game... pay more for a full full game...? I used to get free maps and gamemodes with UPDATES , although both are horrible. Only got it cause I still have faith in MAXIS, they screw me on this and that faith is gone too

I am old school too. I remember when game companies were not so greedy and released mod tools with there games and the gaming community made new maps, skins, weapons, etc... for games and they did not cost anything. I miss the good old days....

Shadowzz said,

This. I might've bought SimCity, but it saddens me i'm not holding a solid game in my hands and for now can only hope they will offer an offline option eventually (at least the moment the servers go down) but I think they will.

The DLC crap and whatever should stop, worse then the 'required' server connection in my opinion, pay for a full game... pay more for a full full game...? I used to get free maps and gamemodes with UPDATES , although both are horrible. Only got it cause I still have faith in MAXIS, they screw me on this and that faith is gone too

I don't think all DLC should go away, often it can be well made, like the Gay Tony and Lost & Damned DLC's for GTA 4, they were miniature games in their own right, also some of the added missions for games like Mass Effect 2 & 3 I loved. Elder Scrolls Oblivion and Skyrim has had some hit & miss DLC, but the stuff they get right is great.

McKay said,

I don't think all DLC should go away, often it can be well made, like the Gay Tony and Lost & Damned DLC's for GTA 4, they were miniature games in their own right, also some of the added missions for games like Mass Effect 2 & 3 I loved. Elder Scrolls Oblivion and Skyrim has had some hit & miss DLC, but the stuff they get right is great.


I was talking in general, those DLC's are what we used to call Expansion packs.
Nothing wrong with actual expansion packs. Red Alert 1 had 4 CD's, 2 where expansion packs. No issue there since they added a bucket load of content. But their usual released free updates changed/added more then 99% of the DLC's do today. And because people keep buying them, they are unfortunally here to stay.
Then again games are allot cheaper now then they where 1-2 decades ago, and allot more expensive to produce. NES games where 80-120 guilders when I was young, which today converts 1 to 1 for the Euro. A 100 euros for a game? They are upto 60euros max usually.

dtanderson said,
I am old school too. I remember when game companies were not so greedy and released mod tools with there games and the gaming community made new maps, skins, weapons, etc... for games and they did not cost anything. I miss the good old days....

Speaking of which.. MAXIS was like that too in the old days.
Damnit Will! Never should have left to resume your life's passion! /s

I don't mind this, but if future games start to make completing a game or earning something next to impossible without purchasing something extra it will suck. Plenty of mobile games doing this right now.