In June 2016, a new arena, Neo Tokyo, based on the Rocket Labs layout Underpass, was added to the game via an update. The update also introduced cosmetic items awarded at the end of matches with various rarity grades, and gave players the ability to trade multiple items of the same type and rarity grade to obtain an item of a better rarity grade. Also included in the patch are a number of painted and certified items, the latter of which are cosmetic items with statistics-recording tags, and eight new achievements. Psyonix added the ability for players to trade items with other players within the “Rumble” update, including item and crate drop systems comparable to Team Fortress 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, in which players have the chance to gain locked crates from playing in competitive matches. Players are able to purchase keys to open these crates through microtransactions, revealing special decorative items for their cars. Players can opt-out of this feature to disable crate drops. Though items received in crates are tradable within the game, these items cannot be sold on the platform’s respective marketplaces so as to prevent issues in the same vein as the Counter-Strike skin gambling controversy. The funds from microtransactions would be used to support the eSports tourneys organized by Psyonix. In October 2016, a major update titled “Aquadome” launched, featuring a new arena placed under the sea, along with two new premium water-themed cars, and a new crate containing new items and seven new achievements.
Psyonix was able to make licensing agreements to include vehicles and decorative items from other franchises within the game. On launch, the PlayStation 4 version included Sweet Tooth’s car from the Twisted Metal series. As a separate DLC, the DeLorean time machine from the Back to the Future film franchise, was released on October 21, 2015, corresponding with Back to the Future Day. The Xbox One release includes platform-exclusive Gears of War and Halo-themed vehicles. The Batmobile, as seen in the 2016 film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, was offered as a playable vehicle in March 2016, while Dominic Toretto’s Dodge Charger from the film The Fate of the Furious was added to tie in with the film’s release in April 2017. A July 2017 update will introduce customization items based on the animated show Rick & Morty. In 2016, Psyonix attempted to include KITT from the 1980s television series, Knight Rider.
Rocket League crates system
In September 2015, Psyonix held a cross-promotion with Torn Banner Studios, adding two free new flags themed after Torn Banner’s Chivalry: Medieval Warfare. At the same time the “Chaos Run” DLC was released, Psyonix added free cosmetics and accessories from the Portal series by Valve Corporation. Themed content based on Goat Simulator and Euro Truck Simulator were added to the game in April 2016 as part of cross-promotional deals with those games. Other themed promotional content includes decorative items based on The Witcher and Worms W.M.D. With the release of the basketball game mode in 2016, Psyonix partnered with the National Basketball Association (NBA), offering flags with all 30 NBA team logos as car customization items. In February 2017, two iconic Hot Wheels cars were added to the game, along with other cosmetic items based on the brand