Disney’s Animal Crossing breaks its promise: it won’t be free –

Still advertised as free and currently in early access. Disney Dreamlight Valley will ultimately pay off. Which won’t help market this equivalent of Animal Crossing well.

In April 2022, Gameloft announced Disney Dreamlight Valley, a life simulator reminiscent of The Sims and Animal Crossing, mixing the worlds of Disney and Pixar. A true waking dream for fans of Mickey and others. At that time, the publisher promised: to opt for a free-to-play model with microtransactions and paid expansions. Finally, after several months of early access, Disney will pay Dreamlight Valley for its launch on December 5, 2023, as we can read in a press release published on October 27.

Gameloft explains this about-face as follows: “This choice ensures that Disney Dreamlight Valley can continue to provide a high-quality gaming experience for all players.” » The company states that there will be free updates and that purchases using the game’s virtual currency will always be ” “optional and fair”. This paradigm shift remains surprising, however, as The Sims 4, one of its main competitors, has become free-to-play.

Disney Dreamlight Valley // Source: Gameloft

No free-to-play version for Disney Dreamlight Valley

“I didn’t buy it because I was waiting for the free-to-play version. It looks like I’ll never buy it.” lamented one user on Twitter, in response to this surprising announcement. During Early Access, which lasts until December 4th, it is possible to access Disney Dreamlight Valley content by purchasing one of the three Founder’s Packs (starting at €29.99) or by subscribing to Xbox Game Pass.

These founding members will of course be rewarded for their loyalty at the start of the game with cosmetic items and a small virtual currency (moonstones). They will also maintain their progress. “As we transition to launch, current players will retain their access to the game, their Moonstones, and their saves,” says Gameloft.

Disney Dreamlight Valley will be available in three versions, priced between $39.99 and $69.99. Only one of these, priced at $49.99, will be physical. Depending on the price you pay, the content will be inflated. For example, the Gold Edition offers 15,000 Moonstones in addition to the base game, compared to 8,000 in the cheapest version. Note that an expansion called “A Rift in Time” is already planned for December 5th and will cost $29.99. In short, the promise of being free falls far short of Gameloft, which can always change its mind if sales are not at the same level. As a gaming service, Disney Dreamlight Valley needs a large community to survive.

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