Ubisoft announced that Spartacus Legends, to be released early next year under the free-to-play model for XBLA.
Kotaku reported that Microsoft is putting out their first third-party entry to xBox Live’s free-to-play program. Per the press release, “Utilizing the free-to-play model, Spartacus Legends offers gamers an opportunity to jump into an accessible fighting game. The game ensures that competitive play stays fair through a fame system; the higher-tier the equipment that is available for purchase, the more fame that is necessary to use that equipment.”
Full details and a trailer after the break!
While typical “free to play” games eventually make the user pay after a certain point, this does not appear to be the case with Spartacus Legends. Though, you do have to have a Gold (read: paid) Xbox Live account in order to play their free games. Yes, I know, it seems ridiculous to me, too. In the past, there has been little willingness to release full versions of games for free. This appears to be slowly changing, with the games DC Universe Online and Free Realms already available on PlayStation 3 and Microsoft releasing it’s first free-to-play Xbox Live Arcade game called Happy Wars later this year. Spartacus Legends will add to the free line-up.
The game itself, based on the Spartacus show on Starz, pits warrior against warrior. As your fame builds, you can purchase more and more expensive equipment. The game involves hundreds of combinations of weapons and armor, and the ability to create your own stable of gladiators. As noted on Joystiq, Game play was unveiled at the Starz Media booth at San Diego Comic-Con back in July. It features pretty brutal arena battles, playable both online and offline. You can see the video trailer below.