The Battle Pass is a Crucial Breakthrough in Gaming, Here’s Why

  • Temtem’s roadmap includes a battle pass for monetization.
  • Some players are angry at its inclusion since Temtem is a buy-to-play game.
  • The battle pass is the fairest form of in-game monetization out there.

The new Pokemon-like MMO, Temtem, recently announced its development roadmap. Developer Crema will add creatures, cross-play, and a new island, among other things. It will also introduce a divisive battle pass by 2021.

Seen in games like Fortnite or Apex Legends, a battle pass provides players with a list of unlockable cosmetics in exchange for a small fee – usually $10 to $15 every few months.

Most battle pass games are free-to-play and exist in multiple forms of monetization. It’s rare (though not unheard of) to see one included in retail, buy-to-play titles.

Temtem’s inclusion has some fans angry. However, it’s the best way for this game to survive.

One player accuses Temtem devs of deleting negative posts surrounding the battle pass. | Source: Twitter

The Battle Pass Is the Only Path to Survival

Microtransactions are an endlessly divisive method of monetization. What should be locked behind a paywall, and for how much? Developers and players generally disagree on what’s best, though the battle pass is a reasonable middle ground.

Game development is expensive, and some AAA titles are commercial failures. Yet, game prices have held steady at the $60 mark. Free-to-play games don’t have that initial buy-in, but developers need a return on investment, especially considering Steam’s 30% publishing cut.

Rocket League is a buy-to-play game, yet it also includes an optional battle pass. Developer Psyonix uses this to fund tournament prize pools alongside further development. | Source: Steam

The thing is, battle passes are entirely cosmetic, wholly optional, and ensure development teams can stay alive longer. Most passes re-up every couple of months, replacing the monthly subscription model used to support some online games even today. In my eyes, $10…

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