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Raiders of the Broken Planet going free-to-play less than a year after launch

MercurySteam's online shooter also rebranding as Spacelords as of August 23rd, director says episodic model “didn't work as planned”

Spanish developer MercurySteam has revealed some big changes for its asymmetric online shooter Raiders of the Broken Planet, including an overhauled business model.

As of August 23rd, the game will become a free-to-play title after attempting an episodic model for its story mode. It will also undergo a name change to the shorter and presumably more SEO-friendly Spacelords.

Raiders of the Broken Planet was first launched in September 2017, and the studio has since released three new campaigns for the game, each of which brought new missions and characters. MercurySteam charged £9.99 for each new expansion, hoping this would make it affordable for a larger audience, but director Enric Álvarez says this "didn't work out as we planned."

The free-to-play change will be introduced with the release of its fourth campaign, Council Apocalypse, which features four new missions and new character Valeria.

MercurySteam has also assured that players who purchased one or more of the previous campaigns will receive "exclusive, top quality game content" to compensate them, although details will be revealed at a later date.

The studio is also reducing the price of renting individual missions and making a new mission available for free every day as it builds up to the relaunch.

"Our vision is to see our game enjoyed by millions of users for years to come and putting all of the game's rich content into their hands for free is the way to realise it," says Álvarez. "We've answered our community and hope this removal of any payment barriers will build our devoted community further."

Álvarez adds that the new name has been chosen to reflect the wider fiction that has developed since launch, as Raiders is only one faction involved in the story.