The not-so-public beta for DICE's latest first-person shooter Battlefield: Bad Company is up and running and as some of you may have noticed by now, the game is to feature a selection of weapons that can only be unlocked by coughing up the precious Microsoft Points via the Marketplace. Following a public hollering on the internets, Electronic Arts spokesperson has offered a clarification.
Straight from the horse's mouth:
"Battlefield: Bad Company will release five unique weapons free of charge through five different promotional programs prior to launch. EA will again make these weapons available to players free of charge after launch, in case anyone missed the pre-launch promotions.
At launch, EA will release a Gold Edition of Battlefield: Bad Company which will feature an additional five new weapons. For players who do not purchase the Gold Edition of the game, they can still buy the five weapons at a small individualized price per item. All weapons are balanced for gameplay. More weapons offer players more choices but do not create an advantage/disadvantage for players who do not opt to buy new items."
It's certainly not the first time something like this has happened, as EA pulled the exact same stunt with Need for Speed: Carbon back in Fall 2006. Is it wrong of them to do this? That's up to you to decide.
Screenshot: BF: Bad Company Weapon Screen