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Disney kart racer Speedstorm exits its paid Early Access with a full free-to-play release in September

Free-to-play, for real this time

Hercules races around a corner in a blue car in Disney Speedstorm
Image credit: Gameloft

Disney Speedstorm, the House of Mouse hero-based racing game from Dreamlight Valley devs Gameloft, will launch fully this September.

The announcement of Disney Speedstorm’s release date follows its launch into a paid Early Access run back in April, with those curious about seeing Disney and Pixar characters like Buzz Lightyear, Beauty and the Beast’s Bell and Monster Inc’s Mike Wazowski race around their respective movie-themed tracks able to cough up £20 or so for the pleasure.

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The plan has always been to launch Speedstorm as a free-to-play game, which will now officially happen on September 28th, having been delayed from its original planned release date in 2022. The full game will include both competitive and co-op variants of its Disneyfied take on powered-up arcade racers like Mario Kart, with the option to pay real money for various cosmetics and other such gubbins.

“Since the launch of Early Access, we’ve received invaluable feedback and support from our incredible community of players, who have been instrumental to the improvements made during Early Access,” the Speedstorm team said on Twitter as part of the announcement.

The devs confirmed that Founders Packs - Speedstorm’s premium offerings during its Early Access, which grant access to the pre-release game and include various characters, costumes and other cosmetics depending on the bundle - will remain available on Steam until the end of that Early Access period. The items included in the packs will move over to the full game when it releases.

Those bundles and Speedstorm’s handling of in-game microtransactions and unlockables have proven unsurprisingly divisive, with some players complaining about the speed of earning coins without putting in real money.

It seems like the gameplay itself is fairly fun, though, so waiting on its free-to-play release might side-step around some of those gripes - or at least let you give it a go before deciding whether Disney deserves any more of your money. (It’s probably doing okay.)

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