E3 2013: DCUO plans to remain completely free on PS4

MJ Guthrie
M. Guthrie|06.13.13

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E3 2013:  DCUO plans to remain completely free on PS4
E3 2013  DCUO plans to remain completely free on PS4
The PlayStation 4 made headlines at this year's E3 thanks to its console wars one-upmanship as well as its newly announced launch library. But one previously announced had a live demo at the L.A.-based convention extravaganza; DC Universe Online offered players a chance to experience some next-gen superhero shenanigans for themselves, so we totally jumped in on the action!

After engrossing ourselves in the world of capes, masks, and super powers, we nabbed Executive Producer Lawrence Liberty to talk with us about DCUO's conversion to the PS4. He shared details about performance, uses for the touchpad on the new controller, a new companion app, and the plan for DCUO to be available at the console's launch. Liberty also noted that the team is working with Sony to keep the game free on the PS4 so players won't have to purchase a PlayStation Plus membership.

Playing with the big capes in DCUO
It's playtime!

SOE completed porting the game over to the PS4 a mere two days before E3 began, so how did DCUO perform at the expo? Aside from some UI issues, the demo played well. For those who weren't there to get some hands-on experience themselves, Liberty offered a comparison to performance on the currently available PS3:
"Right now we're running at 60 fps, which is double the frame-rate of PS3, and we're running at 1080p, which is around double the resolution of what PS3 is (720p). We feel that is a really good baseline."
He continued by saying that with performance stable at those levels, the team is looking at adding more bells and whistles graphically, like more realistic lighting and depth-of-field effects.

Another topic Liberty touched on was how the new touchpad on the PS4 controller would be utilized in DCUO. He explained that the plan is to allow players to scroll through their UIs, manipulate the maps, and to zoom in and out on their characters.

DCUO on the go

Along with release on the PS4, DCUO plans to introduce a mobile companion app, first for iOS and then for Android. With this app, players will be able to access some aspects of their account while not logged into the game proper, including checking out their characters and stats and chatting with friends in the game via text or voice. Other planned features include leaderboards and guides.

DCUO -- living free?
Keeping it free

As players who currently log in via the PS3 and PC know, DCUO is F2P. And Liberty wanted to stress that the team has every intention of keeping it that way even as the game converts to the new console. To maintain the current business model, it is important to keep from erecting barriers that will dissuade players from trying and playing the game, Liberty explained. While nothing is set in stone as of yet, he stated that the team "did get some confirmation from [Sony's Senior VP of Product Development] Shu Yoshida at SCE that, as a free-to-play game, you don't have to have a PlayStation Plus membership to play for free."

Massively's on the ground in Los Angeles during the week of June 10-13, bringing you all the best news from E3 2013. We're covering everything from WildStar and Elder Scrolls Online and ArcheAge to FFXIV's inbound revamp and TERA's latest update, so stay tuned!
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