An alpha version of Call of Duty Online
– the China-exclusive, free-to-play game based on the Activision shooter – is now live
, Kotaku reports. Monetization systems for the game (i.e. those sweet, sweet
microtransactions) are unavailable in its current form; however, Call of Duty Online
is playable in the region.Call of Duty Online
was announced by Activision last year
and pairs the western publisher with China investment holdings firm Tencent, a company that offers social networks, e-commerce, multiplayer online games and more within the country.
China has a rich history with freemium video game experiences
, including Tencent's own hugely successful Cross Fire
. But if a brand as large as Call of Duty strikes gold in China, we may see other popular franchises form-fitted to work in the region's microtransaction-focused industry.