Ubisoft Shanghai is preparing a free-to-play entry in the Tom Clancy's EndWar series called EndWar Online. Running in Flash, EndWar Online is completely playable in the browser and focuses on quick, frenetic 1-v-1 skirmishes.
I was able to play a sample match at Ubisoft's Digital Day event lasting all of four minutes, highlighting EndWar Online as a speedy one-on-one variant of the established multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) formula seen in League of Legends. The hook is a balanced unit system where each vehicle is inherently designed to counteract another vehicle on the battlefield.
Players, choosing a faction to permanently align themselves with and then battling to control lanes feeding into the enemy base, must play to the units already on the battlefield. If the enemy is encroaching with tanks, it's wise to spawn helicopters and attack from above – though the enemy could spawn surface-to-air missile trucks and destroy air vehicles in retaliation. It's this constant tug of war in each isolated conflict that made EndWar Online feel tense.
Battles are waged across a fictional post-apocalyptic planet, trashed from nuclear war. As factions win battles and control territories, bonuses are spread across those factions to other players on a timed basis. The spoils of war then carry into the next conflict.
Players can sign up for a closed beta that is expected to launch before year's end, though Ubisoft hasn't announced an official launch date for EndWar Online yet.