The open beta for APB Reloaded - the re-commissioned and free to play APB - will begin on 18th May.

But there's a good chance of getting an invite before then, providing you do two things: create a GamersFirst account and submit your details to the APB newsletter sign-up page.

GamersFirst is the developer that pulled APB from the Realtime Worlds wreckage. The aim is for APB Reloaded to get running in basic form - i.e. have a working micro-transaction shop - and be built upon thereafter.

"There are still a few important features that are not yet in the game," noted GamersFirst boss Bjorn Book-Larsson on the APB Reloaded blog - "new skill rating system [being] probably the most critical, and skill-based district segmentation and progression."

"[Also,] various tweaks to spawning, but those will be added as we move along, and likely some of the new ones will be there before Open Beta."

GamersFirst also mentioned full credit refunds for people helping test the micro-transaction store, plus character restoration for people with old APB heroes. You'll get an email about what you can reclaim.

There was a message for cheaters, too.

"It keeps baffling us that people are cheating in one moment and then paying for premium - and then continuing cheating," shrugged Book-Larsson. "Seems really odd, given the amount of money you will be risking for something that literally only will help you aim.

"We have on purpose not kicked hackers for over a week to monitor what they are doing. That clearly will change. One semi-famous aimbot site realised that we had caught a slew of their users over the weekend (though we did so silently), then they stopped their own hack, and then earlier today re-enabled it. Sigh: when will they ever learn?

"Anyway," he added, "before Open Beta we will perform various changes that will be good for the game and bad for the aimbotters. Long-term we have a more radical solution to the issue, which we will share when it's ready."

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Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.