I can’t speak as an offical representant, but as far as I know you need to buy the extended license. Envato doesn’t distinguish between a project which produces income and a project which is for free. And as you said you plan to implement advertising which can produce income for you anyway. So it’s not “free” anymore – it’s a business model behind your concept.
you are right
My personal interpretation is like this:
a) Regular license can be used in a fully free game with ad support because almost everyone make use of advertisements in their youtube channels or websites these days and still use regular license. Although the game producer generates an income with the game, his game is still free to view and play for the end user.
b) In the second scenario, however, it’s essentially a paid game. Giving away the base of the game for free and unlocking features upon payment sounds like a marketing trick. So if you go with this scenario, you’d need an extended license.
the keyword for extended license is “resell”.
Extended license is required only if you intend to use purchased items in a project that is destined for sale. Since your project is free, you need no extended license.
Regular license can be used in a free game
So following yours advice, I sent a question to the Envato support team, I think it won`t be rude if I will quote their answer, it might be useful for people with similar questions.
” (...) If the game is going to be a free application, regardless of advertisements, a Regular License should be fine.”
Which means I can use regular license, even with advertisements in the game.
“(...) Regarding your freemium scenario (where a user can unlock parts of the app with a purchase), let’s say you buy a button graphic that free and paying users see. That would be fine to just use a Regular license for the button graphic. On the other hand, let’s say you have to pay to unlock a certain weapon graphic purchased on GraphicRiver that only paying users would see. Then you would need an Extended license for that graphic (...)”
Which as I concluded, means in my certain case, regular license will be enough, as mentioned I want to purchase some musics/sounds – which are going to be available for everyone for free, app will be free, but player will be able to unlock additional LEVELS for additional payment (freemium) which has nothing to do with musics/sounds, since they will be played all the time even without unlocking additional game parts.
Thanks for support.