I know this might stir up some controversy and hate, but I believe Evolve might have been built as a game that would eventually go free to play later down the road. Many may see going F2P as a sign of failure, but plenty of games started off as a standard buy, then later went F2P and were even more successful than before: LoL, TF2, SWTOR, DC universe and many others. Now I don’t think any of these games initially had plans to go F2P but with the success of LoL, many publishers (and gamers) opened up to the idea.
What if a game was built from the ground up to start off as a standard buy and then eventually go F2P? How would it look like? A lot like Evolve, no?
Look at it from 2Ks perspective. First sell the game to cover initially costs to produce the game, and then go F2P once you have recouped investment and possibly make even more money with a F2P model. However starting off as a F2P from the start might have scared investors.
I wouldn’t be all that bad, imo. Once it goes F2P, new players (and there would be a lot more of them) would have one tier of hunters and one monster, that rotates at a bimonthly cycle. Maybe have a $60 dollar bundle to get the first 3 tiers of hunters and the first 3 monsters. Of course everyone that bought the game already has them, but they could get legacy skins or some fancy thing like that.
TLDR: Evolve will go F2P, and that was the plan