Activision has announced the next Grand Prix event for Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled, which will add the ability for players to use their real money to "fast track" their way to getting cosmetics in the games Pit Stop storefront.
Allowing players to purchase additional 'Wumpa Coins' with real money comes a month after initial reviews praised the remake of the classic 90's kart racer for the lack of microtransactions, meaning players had to initially complete challenges and perform well in races to get their hands on the loot.
"Starting in early August, players will have the option to purchase Wumpa Coin bundles from their game console stores to supplement the Coins they earn by playing", explained Activision in a blog post. "This option won’t change the game’s core mechanics (...)They will just able to purchase additional coins if they choose."
Fans and pundits have voiced their concerns about this move, including YouTubers Jim Sterling and Spawn Wave, who both took to Twitter to suggest that Activision purposely added them post-release to avoid criticism "long after the reviews were published."
Wumpa Coins have been available since the start, back in June, and are reminiscent of many other in-game currencies, with bonuses for playing on a weekend, and the first thirty minutes of online play. The amount awarded also depends on the track and the racers placement.
The microtransactions will be part of Crash Team Racing's 'Back N. Time Grand Prix' event, which will run from August 2 to 25. This prehistoric themed Grand Prix will also add new items to the Pit Stop, such "mad scientist" skins for Crash and Ripper Roo, and even new racers, Baby Crash, and Baby Coco.
This callback to the time travel setting of Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped will also include the brand new track, Prehistoric Playground, much like the current Grand Prix, which had fans racing around the course, Twilight Tour.