Long says Hawken's free-to-play model is not about convenience or spending money to buy your way out of inconvenience — it will not be adopting a pay-to-win model. Instead, players can spend money to customize their experience.
"It's going to be about things like customization and about choice," he said. "Being able to customize your character however you want, to show your affiliation in-game with things that are important to you, be that the sports team that you're into, or the university you go to or even just a skull and crossbones."
Long says that Hawken isn't going to be "just a game" but a lifestyle — an experience that players choose to have with friends.
The interview goes on to discuss Long's views in virtual reality gaming and the Oculus Rift headset, which is supported by Hawken. The full interview can be read here.