Battle royale hybrid 'Darwin Project' is now free to play

It's all about boosting the player base.

It's tough to compete in the battle royale world, especially with Fortnite in the room. How do you convince players to try your game if they aren't immediately enraptured? Scavengers Studio knows how: give it away. The company has turned E3 darling The Darwin Project into a free-to-play title, with a new customization progression system coming on April 24th. Scavengers isn't shy about the reasoning, noting that a lack of players on some servers led to longer queues and trouble finding matches for the survival-themed brawler.

If you already bought the Early Access title, you'll get a Founder's Pack with a slew of cosmetic items. Should you want a refund, you can ask for one in the coming days as long as you're in line with Steam's policies. And before you ask: much like Fortnite, nothing you buy in-game will give you an edge over rival players.

There's no certainty the gratis gameplay will help, but it underscores how cutthroat the battle royale landscape has become. Outside of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, it's hard for paid games to break through no matter how innovative their concepts may be. This at least gets Darwin Project's foot in the door, and might keep existing fans from drifting away.