The Culling is returning to the Xbox One this week, with a weird monetization scheme.
The small-scale battle royale flopped last year, but is blazing an unneeded comeback. The original The Culling was a mediocre success on both the Xbox and Steam.
It received mixed reviews by trying to recreate a de-facto melee battle royale game. Its focus on small scale battles did not make it endearing to its audience. The original game, together with its sequel The Culling 2, died May last year. At the moment, developer Xaviant is looking to reinvigorate the title.
Xaviant uses weird token-based scheme for monetization
Xaviant announced a monetization scheme today for the resurrected The Culling: Origins. The entire scheme has its set of complications, but is easy enough to understand.
Xaviant will charge $5.99 for players who don’t have the game yet. For those who have, everyone can only play and match with others free once a day. Here’s where it gets weirder.
The company applied a token-based system where one play deducts one token. If players want to make a match, they have three choices.
First, every win would net players a match token, so victors can play more. The second way to play is to buy match tokens with real money, from $0.99 for three tokens to $4.99 for 20 tokens.
The last way is to buy weekly and monthly unlimited match passes. These will cost $1.99 and $5.99, respectively.
According to the company’s Director of Operations Josh Van Veld, THE MONETIZATION IS THERE to “cover our server cost and keep the game alive for a long, long time.”
The Culling: Origins was mediocre at best
The story of the first title, now called The Culling: Origins, is that of a solid but mediocre game. The core of the gameplay relies on its The Purge style battles. Players fight each other in small scale battle royales, in contrast to its then competitor PUBG.
The game’s premise was strong, having 16 players battle it out in large arena-style environments. These arenas are full of loot and dangers, from poison gas to explosive barrels. Players can hunt other players, craft, and travel to find their enemies.
Even at the height of battle royal supremacy at the time, The Culling did not pan out. The game lost players due to bad gameplay, bad optimizations and wonky graphics. It didn’t help Xaviant that PUBG and Fortnite were blazing the gaming landscape.
To make up for its failure, Xaviant released the sequel, The Culling 2. The second game was almost a literal H1Z1 and PUBG clone, adding ranged weapons to the game.
What little that made the game endearing to a small player base turned people off. By May 2019, Xaviant shuttered both Origins and The Culling 2. Now, The Culling is back with a weird monetization scheme for everyone. The game has a PC release in the works at the moment.
Featured image courtesy of Xaviant LLC/Official Steam Listing