Electronic Arts has once more delayed the release of the latest Battlefield
. The game, which is to take a radically new direction to the previous games in the series, will be an online-only free-to-play game financed through microtransactions.
The game was originally pushed back to late 2008, but hasn't yet showed any signs of emerging from the long-running closed beta.
James Salt, senior producer on the game, told fans and beta testers the news on the official site
, saying that the closed beta will be shutting down today at 6PM CET and will not be running again until next year.
According to Salt, a lot of work is going to be focused on the backend of the game and making sure that the microtransactions system and community websites are all working fine.
"You know the old saying about icebergs being 10 percent above water, and 90 percent below? Heroes is a little like that,
" said Salt. "There's the 10 percent game part you can see, and the hiding 90 percent is what we call the 'backend'. The backend does a lot of things. From running the website's features and looking after the items you have, to collecting the results from each Heroes game and matchmaking players into games.
"We have received lots of great feedback from our beta testers. So much so that we are now ready to enter our next phase. On Friday evening (6pm CET) we will be closing down the current Closed Beta and moving our focus to polishing the backend. So for a while there will be no closed beta available to play. We expect to re-open the beta early next year.
If you want to know more about the game then you can check out our interview with DICE's Ben Cousins
from earlier this year, or share your thoughts in the forums