Sony Online Entertainment has reached an agreement with Brazilian game publisher Gamerica to bring online first-person shooter game PlanetSide2 to Brazil as a free-to-play game with in-game purchases made possible via UOL BoaCompra.
This partnership will allow SOE to have local dedicated hosting, customer support, and payment support for PlanetSide 2. Under the free-to-play business model, players are granted basic access to the game free of charge but can pay for game items and cosmetic changes using real money.
Gamerica will also host PlanetSide 2 at planetside2.gamerica.uol.com.br to provide Brazilian gamers with localized access. Proximity to servers is critical in optimizing user experience. Known in Brazil as a large Internet portal and broadband provider, UOL is one of the top five sites in Brazil and among the 100 most visited websites in the world according to Alexa web traffic data.
As Will Freeman reports in the magazine Develop, local game development in Brazil has been plagued with high taxes on employment – especially for games and related services – as well as having to deal with low investor confidence and high piracy rates. There is, however, hope that Brazil will be a major game market, given the country’s quickly growing Internet infrastructure and plenty of people with the money and time to invest in games.