"Live service" and "real money transactions" are a big no-no for most games released these days. Either can spell doom for a game and having both is relatively unheard of, which is why we're very surprised that LEGO 2K Drive is taking this route.
According to a statement sent by a 2K Games representative to Wccftech, the game will have "real money in play" but that players will be able to receive "Brickbux" from playing and not just from buying it with real currency.
Here's the complete statement:
Lego 2K Drive features an in-game store, Unkie’s Emporium, where players can acquire optional items including new vehicles, minifigures and more. There are two types of items in the store, ones that can be purchased using Brickbux earned through playing, or ones that can be purchased using coins obtained through a real currency purchase. Safety and responsibility was a top priority for us when creating Lego 2K Drive. To ensure parents can make the right decisions for their kids, to make purchases a player must create a 2K Account. If the player is underage, their account must be verified by an adult, who then has the ability to block in-game money purchases.
To make matters worse, LEGO 2K Drive is a "live service game" with its own "Drive Pass" and seasonal content updates.
If this isn't enough to kill all the hype surrounding LEGO 2K Drive, we don't know what will.
Unfortunately, the recent developments raise doubts if it will review and/or sell well with audiences. We'd like to be proven wrong, but the market has spoken many times before.
We're just hoping that 2K Games' other collaborations with LEGO will learn from this.