The free-to-play Command & Conquer (opens in new tab) will feature shorter matches than previous games in the series - though players will be able to expand them if they prefer the length of the older battles. Speaking to Polygon (opens in new tab) , Victory Games' Jon Caneghem said that "we've been noticing since the original Generals, the preferred play session has gone done from an hour plus to 30 to 45 minutes. So we've changed the pacing [of Command & Conquer] to deal with that". They're also considering introducing starter packs, which will give paying players something of a head-start in the game.
"We are toying around with starter packs," Caneghem explained. "Maybe selling them for $30 to $40 and including a half-dozen generals and some currency. That would be for players who don't want to start from scratch and don't want to be a totally free player." By "totally free" he means that everything in the game can be unlocked through play, though you will be able to sign up to a premium service to earn more credits, accrue experience faster and so on. You'll also be able to purchase generals, perks and the like via microtransactions.
This comes in the same Gamescom-flavoured week that the game's episodic, story-driven campaign mode (opens in new tab) was revealed. C&C will release next year, and you'll now be able to start and finish matches in your lunch break.