NCSoft has revealed how the free-to-play business model of the European and North American versions of Blade & Soul will work.
First off, there will be no content locks or restrictions in the western versions of Blade & Soul. NCSoft will, however, be bringing its NCoin currency over from its other games, such as Aion and Lineage II. NCoin can only be bought with real money and lets you buy convenience and cosmetic items, as well as quality of life improvements (such as inventory and character slots).
There will also be another currency in the game that you can earn without spending any real money. This other currency can be spent on the same in-game products as NCoin, as well as a range of costumes, accessories, food, potions, and repair tools.
A premium membership system has also been developed specifically for the western versions of Blade & Soul. To get the benefits of having a premium service you’ll be required to maintain an active membership and will get a number of quality of life benefits that get better as you progress through the membership tiers.
“For example, the first tier of membership will provide players with cool special effects for their Windwalk skill and boosts to XP and currency drop rates. One thing this system will not provide is competitive advantage,” NCSoft said. You’ll be able to increase your membership tier by making purchases inside the game with both NCoin and the free currency.
A closed beta of Blade & Soul in the west is planned for this fall and you can sign-up to be part of it on its website. Before that, in the summer, pre-order packs will be available as digital-only purchases. More on these pre-order packs will be revealed closer to their availability.