Command & Conquer goes free-to-play

Tiberium Alliances to bring real-time strategy series into the world of MMOGs with new installment for browsers and mobile devices; closed beta starts tomorrow.

Electronic Arts is bringing another of its signature franchises into the world of free-to-play games. The publisher today announced Command & Conquer: Tiberium Alliances, a new massively multiplayer online strategy game in EA's real-time strategy series.

So will Tiberium be the in-game currency?

As the name suggests, choosing whom to trust and when will play an important role in Tiberium Alliances, as players will be pitted against one another, as well as mutant enemy forces. EA is promising "a completely interactive and dynamic gameplay experience," with in-game social and news feeds updated in real time. The game will run in Web browsers and on mobile devices, with support for cross-platform play. A closed beta begins tomorrow, and players can apply for the program on the official Tiberium Alliances website.

Handling Command & Conquer's transition to free-to-play will be EA's Frankfurt, Germany-based studio Phenomic. Acquired in 2006 in the wake of its SpellForce games, Phenomic has previously made EA efforts like BattleForge and Lord of Ultima.

Ultima and Command & Conquer aren't the only EA franchises converted to the company's Play4Free label. The publisher's list of free-to-play adaptations includes Need for Speed World, Warhammer Online: Wrath of Heroes, a pair of Battlefield free-to-play shooters (Battlefield Heroes and Battlefield Play4Free), and EA Sports titles like Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online and FIFA Superstars.

Tiberium Alliances is the second new Command & Conquer title revealed this week. On Saturday, EA announced Command & Conquer: Generals 2 for the PC, the first game from the publisher's new BioWare Victory studio, which was established earlier this year to focus on the long-running strategy series.

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