Italian developer, Milestone produced a number of officially licensed world rally games which left racing aficionados disappointed due to the sub-par graphics, synthetic audio design and lacklustre career mode. Eventually, the company lost the WRC license and decided to work with rallying legend, Sébastien Loeb. The latest WRC game was created by Kylotonn, formerly known as 4X Studios. Unfortunately, this release has received a fairly mixed reception with the general consensus describing the game as competent but no match for Codemasters’ DIRT Rally. In a press release, the company outlined their plans to create a highly competitive eSports scene. However, as astounding as this might seem, they are going to charge players to compete in any eSports event. The press release reads:
“Players just need to download one of the eSports Pack (the first DLC that is currently available is priced at $7.99/£6.49) to get access to the dedicated stages of each rally. From this moment, practise is unlimited but during the rally weekends, they will have only one opportunity each day to record their best time (from Thursday to Sunday noon). On Sunday afternoon, the ESL crew will invite the best drivers for a Sunday tournament which will be broadcast on Twitch. At the end of this Sunday Tournament, the best 3 drivers on each platform will gain their access to the semi-final and to the grand Finale. See the calendar below for more details.”
To access an eSport event, you have to pay $7.99/£6.49 for one of the eSport packs in addition to the base game. This is unbelievable and bound to destroy any hopes of creating a large online community. It’s also quite insulting and I cannot believe they have attempted to charge for competitive play. Clearly, many publishers are looking for new avenues to make money, but it’s occurring at the expense of player engagement.