The Arma series has always inspired creativity, with hardcore players flocking to the workbench to put their own spin on the game and Arma Reforger is no different. In the weeks since Arma Reforger hit Steam and Xbox Game Preview, thousands of mods have been created, inspiring a new generation of players to think long and hard about the future of Arma, and, more importantly, Arma 4.
Although Arma Reforger launched in early access to middling reviews, the Arma community seized the opportunity with both hands, diving straight into the deep end – something that took the Bohemia Interactive team by surprise. “There were over 1,000 mods created in the first two weeks, which is very impressive,” Ján Dušek, the Arma Reforger project lead, tells The Loadout. “We were amazed. The first simple mod was released within two hours after the [game’s] release!”
Weeks on from launch, that surprise has now turned into awe as creators are becoming more accustomed to the tools the Workbench has to offer. “Their creations are becoming more complex and polished,” Dušek says. “We are sure that over time, together with our updates and improvements, something extraordinary will be created.”
And well, creators aren’t far off the mark either. In the weeks since Arma Reforger was put into the hands of the players, the community has published thousands of modes from simple King of the Hill modes to more complex scenarios that require a hell of a lot of teamwork. All of these modes, regardless of how popular they are, are valuable to the Bohemia Interactive team, especially as the community learns to harness the power of Enfusion – the engine powering both Arma Reforger and Arma 4.
Dušek has already explained the importance of Enfusion and its Workbench – after all, he believes no Arma game can be created without them – and that is ever present in our conversation. He argues that Arma Reforger isn’t just about testing the limits of the engine, it’s about “building a community of modding experts for Arma 4” – something Bohemia would like to reward them for in the future.
“One day, current Workbench pioneers will become the veterans in the Arma 4 modding community,” he says. “And with the possibility of monetizing mods in the future, the scene might become even more interesting.”
While Dušek doesn’t explain how those mods might be monetised in the future, it’s hardly a foreign concept, especially in the Arma scene. Bohemia greenlit server monetisation in Arma 3, and it supported a handful of popular creator mods as DLCs. While some of those were more successful than others, monetising mods provides an interesting incentive for hardcore Arma players, especially when you consider that games like DayZ and PUBG: Battlegrounds took their first steps in Arma servers.
How that’ll shape up though, remains to be seen. Either way, Bohemia Interactive exploring revenue sharing options for Arma creators might just be the stepping stone the developer needs to unlock the true potential of Arma 4.
You can read more about the Arma 4 release date here.