Next MX vs. ATV revs up microtransactions

E3 2010: THQ's next installment in motorsports franchise to sell at a low price point but be bolstered by weekly releases of new content, from helmets to track packs.

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LOS ANGELES--Earlier this year, THQ announced a round of layoffs and a new downloadable focus for MX vs. ATV developer Rainbow Studios. While gamers may have inferred that the long-running motorsports franchise would be departing store shelves entirely as a result, the publisher today shed some light on the series' future.

This guy will want to invest in the Landing Area Full of Soft Pillows pack.
This guy will want to invest in the Landing Area Full of Soft Pillows pack.

In an E3 analysts call, THQ executive vice president of core gaming Danny Bilson said that the next MX vs. ATV will sell at retail for a low price point, with the publisher planning a weekly schedule of new downloadable content to bring in the bigger bucks over the course of a year. Bilson said the model should have special appeal to the "Wal-Mart audience" who loves the series but wants a value price point.

Examples of add-on content given included a free helmet and a $5 track pack. Bilson didn't discuss the platforms, release date, or price of the core game. However, in explaining the business model to analysts in the call, he did say that even if consumers don't go for the microtransactions, the company still does well "if we can get that $20 from the Wal-Mart buyer."

The last game in the series, MX vs. ATV, launched in December for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, DS, and PSP.

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