The Uncharted 4 release date is next week, and that's exactly when you can stop paying for the game, downloadable content and all.
All future maps and modes for its multiplayer mode will be free, and all in-game items can be unlocked via credits earned by playing the game, announced lead designer Robert Cogburn on the PlayStation Blog.
That's quite fitting for the game that goes by the full title of Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, as it's putting an end to the typical "pay-to-play" multiplayer add-ons model. It's now earn-to-play.
By contrast, many of today's multiplayer games offer new maps, flashy items, or special modes for a small fee - or include them as part of a prepaid season pass. Uncharted 4 is circumventing microtransactions and subscriptions, opting instead for a method not uncommon in several free-to-play games.
Why Uncharted 4's multiplayer DLC is free
Wanting to ensure players are bisected into the "has" and "has-nots," developer Naughty Dog will be delivering post-launch multiplayer content through free updates all the way through to Spring 2017.
Players will earn an in-game currency called Relics through winning matches and accomplishing challenges that can be cashed-in to open treasure chests. The chests contain the player's choice of gameplay items, like weapons, or "vanity" items like apparel, hats, or taunts.
Now, those who don't mind parting with their cash a bit can still exchange real-life currency for Uncharted Points, which can buy in-game items directly without having to wait for the perfect loot drop to come about.
Cogburn also assured that no item in the game is exclusively earned with Uncharted Points - with enough time, a player can earn everything. Sounds fair.
Not 'pay to win,' says Naughty Dog
Those who have already purchased the Triple Pack - Uncharted 4's version of the season pass - will be getting a single-player add-on story to the base game and two multiplayer packs to boost their arsenal, but Naughty Dog assures that the game will not be "pay-to-win."
This ideology of keeping a multiplayer community intact is practiced by the breakout hit Rocket League, which made its recent basketball mode free for all versions of the game. It also built a framework to one day allow Xbox One and PS4 players to compete with each other.
The freshly-revealed Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare announced a season pass of its own today, but it hasn't been divulged if it covers multiplayer content like it has in the series' past.
May 10 is coming up quickly, but should Uncharted 4 and its multiplayer really take off, we take solace in the fact that we won't have to shell out half the game's value just for that new content.