Mojang has revealed that Scrolls, its long-awaited collectible card/board game crossover, will finally come out of beta next week. And while most free-to-play games depend on players spending ungodly amounts of money on gold, potions, cards, power-ups of various sorts, or whatever else the developers offer in order to make progression easier, or even possible, Scrolls will apparently take the opposite approach.
"We restrict how much you can spend to retain game balance," the studio said, as reported by Eurogamer. "This sounds unlikely, but you really don't have to spend more than the cost of Scrolls ($4.99) to progress." Scrolls players will be able to buy in-game items using "shards" purchased with real money or gold earned through gameplay, and "All items are available for a reasonable amount of gold," it added.
That's a fairly common claim for free-to-play developers to make, but in the case of Scrolls it might actually hold water. Mojang has a well-earned reputation as a "gamer-first" studio, for one thing, and the runaway success of Minecraft means there's not a huge amount of pressure for Scrolls to be a money-making blockbuster itself. Players will also be able to trade scrolls directly or for in-game gold, providing another avenue for satisfying their specific needs.
Scrolls goes into full launch mode on December 11, which will also see the release of a free trial version of the game. Anyone who picked it up during either the alpha or beta periods will be upgraded to the full version for free, while everyone else will have to pay $5.