Forza Motorsport 7 is already in the hands of its most hardcore fans, those who were willing to spend $100 to get the Forza Motorsport 7 Ultimate Edition. The game launches for the rest of the community tomorrow, October 3. Before that launch though, Microsoft is already making a change to how it sells the game on the Windows Store.
In the past, certain players would buy the VIP pass for Forza Motorsport games, either separately or through deluxe editions. These VIP passes would offer exclusive cars, but they'd also give players a permanent boost to CR earnings. CR is Forza's in-game currency, required to purchase every vehicle in the game. Forza Motorsport 6's VIP pass doubled race earnings, making it quite worth it if you were into the game for the long haul.
The issue is the new progression system in Forza Motorsport 7 requires consumable Mods to in order to boost CR earnings. You acquire these mods in loot box-style Prize Crates you purchase with CR. You then equip the Mod cards—up to three per race—that modify the races and boost your CR earnings and experience gain. You're basically spending CR to make more CR. The problem in regards to the VIP pass is that consumable nature wasn't communicated.
Exclusive cars Mods Driver Gear and more await with Forza Motorsport 7 VIP membership! Forza Motorsport 7 VIP members receive exclusive VIP cars. VIPs will receive additional benefits including 100% CR bonus Mods, VIP Driver Gear and more. Get your VIP membership today!
Following the community backlash to finding out that the "100% CR bonus Mods" were consumable, Microsoft has changed the listing to this:
Forza Motorsport 7 VIP membership features exclusive rewards you can't get anywhere else! Forza Motorsport VIPs receive exclusive VIP cars, VIP Driver Gear Suits, as well as five 100% CR bonus Mod cards (five uses each per card), and more. Get your VIP membership today!
The lack of information about the nature of the CR bonus Mods pissed off the community. As of this writing, the Windows Store ratings for the Forza Motorsport 7 VIP stand at 1.1 stars out of 5. Forza Motorsport 7 players are generally happy with the game, but have issues with how the VIP pass was sold and the overall nature of the series' new progression system.
"VIP has always granted full time credit bonus. The description of that was made clear during my pre order of Forza 7 Ultimate Edition and now they changed it under our noses!" said user Jason.
"In past titles, VIP has always granted permanent content. One would be safe to assume this time it would do the same especially considering prior to October 1 there was no mention of 'limited use' anywhere in the description of the VIP content. This is incredibly misleading to the consumer and overall a disgusting business practice that reeks of freemium," added user Ryan in their review.
Microsoft and Turn 10 Studios are dealing with the overall backlash to Mods and Prize Crates, but have yet to activate the next step in the new progression system: real-money purchases. Currently, the system is in-game only. In the future, Microsoft will be adding real-money conversion via Tokens.
"Once we confirm that the game economy is balanced and fun for our players out in the wild, we plan to offer Tokens [a real-money currency that works like CR] as a matter of player choice. Some players appreciate using Tokens as a way of gaining immediate access to content that may take many hours to acquire in the normal course of play. There will also be an option within the in-game menu to turn off Tokens entirely," Microsoft told Ars Technica.
We'll see how the community reacts to these plans as more players get their hands on the game tomorrow and in the coming weeks.