All The Mass Effect 3 DLC Costs How Much?

By Alec Meer on February 27th, 2012 at 3:45 pm.

The terrifying plastic price of DLC

No. Nooo. Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo way. Destructoid writer but not X-Files creator Chris Carter (who is probably incredibly bored of that reference) has been doing a bit of maths, which immediately makes him a more capable human being than I am. The purpose of this mathleticism was to collate all the disparate bits of DLC, pre-order bonus, unlocks and whatnot available for the upcoming marketing monolith that is Mass Effect 3, and just how much it’d cost someone to lay hands on the whole shebang. Take a seat before you read the next line.

$870/£550/€650. Whaaaat.

It must, however, be pointed out that much of that horror-price stems from having to buy bonus code-sporting hardware such as special gamepads, keyboards and headsets, or Mass Effect 3 merch such as multiple action figures and iPhone cases.

And most of what it gets you in-game is just weapon variations, skins and multiplayer unlocks, rather than ‘real’ content. Not stuff you’ll actually need, in other words, depending on how much you care about being King Big Balls in multiplayer. Apparently, each additional code you get for the Collector’s Assault Rifle (available with assorted Razer hardware) further boosts its power in multiplayer, which makes for a fairly vague concept of completism and presumably suffers from diminishing returns.

Even so – this is a sign of just how darkly convoluted and fragmented modern gaming purchases have become. The full breakdown of all the DLC and the necessary purchases is over yonder.

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173 Comments »

  1. Vinraith says:

    I’d be interested in knowing what the figure is accounting ONLY for actual in-game content.

    • sneetch says:

      I think it’s $80 for the collectors edition or $70 for the game and the day one DLC (put like that, collectors edition sounds pretty good).

      There’s a load of auxiliary purchases that unlock a load of powerups for a single weapon that will probably be so powerful that using it would make playing the entire game a joke. Not missing out much there.

      Edit: the collector assault rifle is apparently a multiplayer only weapon so you’re missing out on even less!

    • Kdansky says:

      That’s why stores where you buy handbags always put a $1000 model up front. Suddenly, $200 sounds like a good deal. Except it’s not, because you’re still buying something that is actually worth a tenth of that.

    • Azhrarn says:

      ME3 N7 Edition €65 (managed to pre-order it cheap), plus the number of actual content DLC x €10, so I’m guessing that you’d be looking at ~€120 or so to get everything. Or you wait for the complete edition a year or two down the line.

    • Vinraith says:

      Or you wait for the complete edition a year or two down the line.

      It’s worth noting that ME2 never did get a complete edition.

      The result, funnily, is that I’ve never bought any of the DLC for it.

    • sneetch says:

      @Azhrarn

      Ah, I didn’t realise there was that much content DLC. I thought there was only “From Ashes”. Multiple launch day DLC is starting to put me off games, regardless of when they designed wrote it I think that everything available at launch day should be sold as part of the starter package. Games aren’t cheap as it stands €120 for the full game (not including all this random weapons with random peripherals nonsense) is just stupid.

    • TCM says:

      There IS only “From Ashes”. Everything else is unlockable multiplayer crap, or some bonus weapon that is either so slightly better than other weapons as to be on parity, or terribly broken.

    • xsikal says:

      That’s the only DLC announced for launch day (outside of incentives for buying other merch). It’s pretty much a given that Bioware will release more DLC for ME3 over the next year though. The actual cost for ME3 + all DLC (even ignoring the multi-player only stuff) won’t be known for a long while.

    • mouton says:

      @Vinraith

      I would happily buy some ME2 DLC (lair, maybe overlord) if it was ever discounted. As it stands, I will not pay their release price few years on.

    • Persus-9 says:

      The lack of the complete edition is why I never bought ME2 it at all. I’m still waiting and I can wait forever, there are plenty of other good games to be playing in the meantime, too many for the amount of free time I have.

    • dmadrfe says:

      I’m surprised nobody did the math with ME2. If you want to buy ME2 Today it would cost you around 25$ and if you want to buy all the DLC it would cost 3800 Bioware Points which is around 45$. You can see why they release this much DLC.

    • Kato says:

      @sneetch Can you please explain to me how this is supposed to work? After the game is done (“content complete”), there are multiple months of testing followed by certification, a process by which the developer can literally do nothing to speed along and can change the game in no way. This is when they produce DLCs that are available shortly after or, sometimes, on Day One. What would you rather them do? It isn’t as of they can include this content in the game–sure, on PC’s we can download big honking patches, but on the console there is a size limit on free stuff.

      So what would you rather them do? Make nothing and sit on their arses, or make something you can play if you stop being greedy and entitled and pay them for their work?

    • mioasdvh says:

      I think it’s $80 for the collectors edition or $70 for the game and the day one DLC (put like that, collectors edition sounds pretty good). Apple the iPhone 3GS (32GB) White Color with free expedited shipping 48% discount! Price U.S. $ 305.60

    • blackjackshelak says:

      @Kato
      If the Day One DLC truly is something that was originally intended to be in the game, but failed to meet the deadline, I don’t see why anyone should pay extra for it. It’s just as easy to have a Day One Patch and put the game out “as intended” as it is to charge everybody extra because they couldn’t complete their work on time. I don’t see how expecting to pay one price for a “complete” game is being greedy. Having to pay somebody extra for finishing their work late does sound pretty silly though. I can understand your point so far as storage space is concerned. If the DLC is sufficiently large, a patch that you can’t really opt out of could be an issue for consoles. The practice of releasing an unfinished game and expecting your customers to pay extra for the last bit bothers me though. While charging for it might be good business practice, it’s not good customer service.

      Now on second viewing I may have missed the first bit in your post about “content complete”, so this might be a bit off the mark. My argument is about “unfinished” games being published. If that’s not the case, then your point stands pretty well on its own and I won’t argue further.

    • TCM says:

      Shocking as it may be, it’s not that the work was done late — it’s that it was cut from the game for the _express purpose_ of meeting the deadline, and the employees (programmers and testers alike) were likely STILL in a huge crunch for the final stretch of development either way. Also, shocking as it may be, people don’t work for free, especially on projects that management has labelled ‘complete’.

      I’m just saying, where do you think the money you spend on games and DLC goes? Do you honestly believe 100% of it is profit?

    • blackjackshelak says:

      @TCM
      I did realize after the fact that I’d missed the “content complete” portion of the post I was responding to. I chose to leave what I had typed as I felt it could remain for the hypothetical situation I was basing the argument on. I know very little about how the game industry functions, and was operating on a (quite possibly incorrect) assumption. I’m not so naive as to expect people to work for free. There was really no need for that comment. If the case as Kato explained is truly what happens when we see Day One DLC, then it’s a bit easier to understand. To the average consumer (and anybody who hasn’t had that process explained to them) however, what they see is a game being sold in two parts on the day of its release. If a game is declared “complete” and extra work is done before its release, that’s understandable, but a bit confusing at first. Eliminating content in order to meet a deadline, only to add it in after the fact sounds to me like “patching to complete” more than anything. What my understanding at this point is though, is the fact that it couldn’t make it into the game, means releasing it after the fact REQUIRES that it be payed for in addition, if it’s going to make any sense to release it. Again, I apologize if I missed an important part of the original post and ended up engaging in a bit of a knee-jerk. I don’t like to remove comments/posts in most cases, so it stayed. I’d rather have to defend a poorly-thought point and end up the wiser for it, than pretend it never happened.

    • 57 says:

      According to Destructoid seems the DLCs come as part of previous games, collector’s edition and gaming peripherals so no real DLC actually. Not yet. But remember who makes it and think of the road ahead. I bet for a DLC every week after the first.

    • Milky1985 says:

      @Kato

      “@sneetch Can you please explain to me how this is supposed to work? After the game is done (“content complete”), there are multiple months of testing followed by certification, a process by which the developer can literally do nothing to speed along and can change the game in no way.”

      Reports are out there of the from ashes DLC being a 148k download, if this is true then this is basically an unlock code (as theres maybe enough room for a bit of text in there, no way thers room for textures/sounds)

      So by your own argument the content must have been in the game as you say they can’t change it once its off for certifiation.

      Why am i not entitled to content that is ON THE DISC I HAVE GOT.

    • sneetch says:

      @Kato says:02/28/2012 at 01:20
      So what would you rather them do? Make nothing and sit on their arses, or make something you can play if you stop being greedy and entitled and pay them for their work?

      Wow, that’s a nice high-horse you’ve got there. Despite your pompous and high-handed presumption I do know the development and certification process and I do pay them for their work, I always have, I’ve bought all the content DLC for the previous 2 Mass Effects and for Dragon Age. In fact I’ve bought the DLC for just about every game I enjoyed as a way of rewarding the devs for the work they put into the game I enjoyed. Despite that, my point and my position remains, let me emphasise it for you better so that you might understand:

      Multiple launch day DLC is starting to put me off games, regardless of when they designed wrote it I think that everything available at launch day should be sold as part of the starter package.” (Especially if it’s on the disc when it ships.)

      So, I explicitly referred to multiple launch day DLC, that Azhrarn had put at about €55 putting the cost of buying the full game at launch at €120. That turned out to be not the case here but I’m sure that was an honest mistake. You decided that I was “entitled and greedy” because I don’t want to pay €120 for a game and because those are the presumptions and the criticisms that are popular right now. I didn’t say I wouldn’t buy “From Ashes”, I will, in fact, as I said in my first post the Collectors Edition is looking pretty good because it comes with this DLC.

  2. MrGtD says:

    That’s complete bullshit. All of the actual items that come with DLC codes just come with the same gun. If you buy 8 different accessories to get the same gun 8 times, you’re just an idiot. I think it’s cool to include a little in-game bonus with branded accessories, and it’s not exactly vital content.

    • Alec Meer says:

      Apparently it’s a different unlock for the gun with each purchase.

    • BadHat says:

      I assume it works the same way that unlocking/upgrading weapons in multiplayer normally does. If you buy one of the supply crate things and you find a new weapon, you’ll just have a “regular” version of that weapon. If you find the same weapon in a crate again, it’ll upgrade that weapon slightly, making it into a mk. II or III or etc. Presumably you won’t ever be seeing these promotional weapons in regular unlocks, so getting every “instance” of it this way is probably the only way to fully upgrade it. Presumably.

      Source: I have played far too much of the multiplayer in the demo. It’s pretty fun.

    • mouton says:

      Idiots are fair game. And in the end, if such completism actually makes some people happy, who are we to judge them?

    • CobraFive says:

      Wow, I’m really disappointed in RPS on this one. The whole reason I stopped going to Kotaku and coming here instead is so I didn’t have to sift through sensationalized hyperbole…

      First, that method off counting is incredibly skewed. Those “slightly randomized” unlocks for the action figures are unlockable from in-game too. And considering each upgrade to the collector rifle as a separate DLC?

      Second, buying $80 worth of gaming hardware and getting DLC with it IS NOT THE SAME AS $80 DLC. I don’t know why destructiod thought this was…

      PLUS to mention you are doing things like counting the $80 collector’s edition, AND THEN counting the DLC that comes with it (From Dust for example, which is included in the collector’s edition price in full) as a separate purchase! Why would you buy the same DLC twice?

      Sorry for flying off the handle a little bit but when you are trying to prove a point by skewing the numbers to your favor, I really lose faith.

    • Flappybat says:

      Agree, this looks very overblown.

      The Collector Rifle may be adding +1 to the level of the rifle with each code.
      The randomized multiplayer content with the toys may just be a code for the crates of items, which you earnt credits to buy with easily in the demo.

      He adds the $10 from dust which is in the collectors edition they list?

      The only actual extras could be whatever Mass Effect Infiltrator gives (which may just be credits) and the Collector Assault Rifle from a $35 mouse pad or $25 iphone case.

      So unless they pack some unique material with the toys/statues the actual cost is more like $105, if you really want a Collector Assault Rifle.

    • MadMatty says:

      im with CobraFive, this is overblown

    • Sheng-ji says:

      OK – You may remember me from a little while ago making exactly the same point about skewing numbers and sensationalist reporting, however it’s worth noting:

      1) That Alec didn’t come up with the numbers here and

      2) The guy who did the numbers only made one $10 mistake as far as I can tell, I doubt he did that deliberately to boost the numbers. If you want every piece of digital content, and the fully unlocked assault rifle, you would have to spend the sums mentioned subtract $10

      I think this is good reporting and quite balanced at that. You may not like the nature of the journalism, but it’s quite obvious from the first line the nature of the article and can easily be skipped if it’s not to your taste.

      You see John – I’m not a hating prick, I just call it where I see it and stick up for you when it’s unfair :)

    • Sutoi says:

      I agree that this is definitely overblown and completely ridiculous. There have been exclusive little bits of weapons and random DLC given with peripherals or buying a game at a certain store or whatever for ages. I imagine the price would be fairly high to get all the gun skins and characters for Gears of War 3 because you would have to buy several copies of it. Even like, Soul Calibur 2, you would have to buy 3 copies and two other game systems to be able to use all 3 characters. It is the same broken logic as this.

    • finnith says:

      This is some really bad journalism by RPS. It doesn’t even matter if RPS didn’t originally come up with the numbers, the original article did not merit a repost. To me it simply seems like an article designed to generate pageviews, especially since the RPS community is against DLC.

    • Sheng-ji says:

      Hate to point it out, but the whole site exists to generate clicks! If no-one visited the site, it wouldn’t exist for much longer. Every thing posted is posted because they believe it is of interest to you and by reading it, you help them earn a living and carry on reporting for you. What was that line from that Tool song…. “I sold out long before you ever heard of me”

      I get that you have no interest in this article. Big whoop, don’t read it then. I get that you don’t see this as a superb piece of high brow journalism. Big Whoop, go watch newsnight and mentally masturbate over how intelligent you believe yourself to be, but there are some of us who enjoy reading magazine pieces because they are interesting and entertain us for a little bit each day. And that’s fine too, so go take your accusations and annoy someone else with them – and learn what journalists do and why they do it (Here’s a hint, it’s not for charity and they are not volunteers)

  3. Torn says:

    And EA will keep on pulling this kind of crap until gamers stop throwing money their way.

    Seriously, if you’re tired with fragmented DLC becoming the industry norm then STOP. GIVING. EA. MONEY.

    That, or pirate but then that’ll be used to justify ever-invasive DRM which only harms legitimate customers. A double-edged sword.

    • drplote says:

      That wasn’t really an “OR” you presented, since regardless of whether you pirate it or simply don’t play it, you’re not giving EA money.

      But really I’m just commenting to say that I wish people would stop trying to justify their piracy with these sorts of ridiculous arguments.

    • Red_Avatar says:

      It’s interesting when people say “don’t pirate it or they’ll add more DRM” when the truth is that they’ll use piracy as excuse regardless. Face it, they need a scapegoat for ineptitude and piracy is the easiest one – you think the same people in power who made the crazy decisions for adding crappy DRM and DLC will confess that they screwed up? Nooo, of course not. They’ll find someone to point the finger to as always and merrily continue with their ridiculous stuff until there’s enough public outcry that the shareholders get nervous and tick that guy on the fingers.

      That’s not to say pirating the game isn’t sending the wrong signal, but don’t just assume that not buying the game will somehow help – they’re too thick for that and will just blame piracy regardless. A nice big fuss is a better option I think. Voting with your wallet only works if the signal comes across and they can’t blame it on something else instead.

    • Torn says:

      The OR was really ‘don’t buy it’ vs ‘pirate it and get all DLC’, but I don’t think pirating is necessarily a good option.

      As to whether they get the message, a boycott *combined* with massive media / gaming-outlet attention would get the message across. Whether they react to it or continue letting the business suits slap DRM on is another matter.

      I think one of the problems boycotts don’t work is just joining a steam group isn’t enough, especially when after release time and again we find members of those groups playing the game. There needs to be a more effective / coordinated way of registering boycotts than ‘liking’ a page or joining a steam group.

    • Shivoa says:

      I’d definitely say avoid the DLC if it looks like you’re being taken for a ride (“Out now, the two page epilogue chapter to this thrilling book that ties up the story for one of the main characters, only £6!” and by the time you’ve tried to say that 5 times for a single book then I’m a lot less likely to buy your books, let along the epilogues you keep trying to peddle). With ME2 being a game offered for as little as £5 retail but with a £30 DLC charge (pay direct through Bioware/EA, because they want every penny of that precious upsell money) they* have totally soured me on the idea of buying the new game. These small chunks of content are not worth their sticker value, especially when you look back at expansion packs (which, like retail games, drop in value over time so the initial price is not what you have to pay as long as you were prepared to wait).

      But don’t pirate, just use the cash you would spend on the game (or plow into buying tiny chucks of the story, an hour at a time and £5-10 in cash) to buy something else. Maybe that indie release is looking rather tasty or a Steam sale would make it a crime not to spend £5 for a complete 15 hour game with no expectation of DLC sales to push it’s total cost well over the normal price of a new game; what about a GotY box of something that’s on your ‘to play’ list?

      * the people controlling the output of the creatives at Bioware who made ME1 one of my favourite games.

    • TCM says:

      ME2, before DLC, took me a good 20 hours to finish. Minimum, since that’s not accounting for reloads due to combat death, or jerking around on my alternative file to see how other stories played out.

      So I guess that if a five pound ‘complete’ game that lasts 15 hours is worth more than a five pound ‘incomplete’ game that lasts 20, your judgement of time is perhaps…hm, how can I phrase this gently…”Entirely Wrong”.

    • InternetBatman says:

      Just don’t play it if you don’t like it. You don’t have to consume everything, and there are plenty of other games out there to take up your time.

    • Shivoa says:

      @TCM: No, I’m entirely happy with what I said. I do not look at my entertainment at the cost per hour because that is a terrible idea (and the biggest price is in not doing something else with the time) and so the game length was a tiny throw-away part of what I was saying.

      I would much rather buy a game in GotY form (DLC all done and included) or without DLC coming, one that I know is as complete as the developers were able to make it, that will give me a world to inhabit and enjoy for the price on the sticker (for example £5) and will not at any points have that small voice in the back on my mind saying “For only £30 more you can have all the story we’ve got for this world and your avatar. You like it now, but you’re not seeing everything; things are masked from view, why not give us some money and open those locked doors. You know you want to, it’s only money.”

      I like not thinking about that while I’m in a place of entertainment and sometimes discovery. I like not thinking about it after I’ve completed what I want of the experience. I especially like it as DLC reviews aren’t exactly the most common and never try to really compare the DLC against the general market value (if you release a 6 hour campaign RPG for £30 then people will mention the price, no one talks about how little content almost all DLC offers in the few places that review DLC at all).

      ME2 is £5, but ME2 and the piece of mind I can play all the content that Bioware wanted to tie to the ME2 campaign is £35 and EA have not indicated a likelihood that’ll be dropping over time like a traditional game price. So I’ll agree with TB, Torn, and that Forbes article: stop giving EA your money guys. It’s the only way to get rid of this nickel and diming system of cutting off tiny story chunks to sell for highly inflated prices with the hook that you like the game so why not pay just a bit more and get all of it.

    • DrGonzo says:

      My piracy argument has just boiled down to ‘coz I don’t give a fuck’. I earn £6000 a year, and live off it. So the argument about costing people money doesn’t bother me when people are earning such unfairly huge wages then moaning when they lose some of it. If a game is made by an individual or tiny company I will try and support them as best as I can. But generally, who cares?

    • Torn says:

      What irks me is key plot content in DLC, as I believe ME2 had at the end. (Something to do with Protheans? I’ve not played it).

      Cosmetic crap and alternate skins I don’t mind, and I don’t mind full expansions released as DLC if the price is right.

      It’s when they start cutting levels / quests / entire weapon types out at launch for $$$ that I don’t agree with, especially if the main game doesn’t feel ‘complete’ or is low on content to start with.

    • anduin1 says:

      Its going to get pirated like crazy by people who just want to try to make a point. I’m ok with waiting a year or even two before playing the game because it’s really not that huge of a game like Skyrim or BF series games are. This isn’t the bioware of old who I would’ve bought anything from day 1. I won’t try to use any of that to justify piracy because this isn’t a case of the developer or publisher screwing us over, it’s just a shitty deal for consumers and it’s really up to us to withhold support from companies like that. It’s pretty futile unless you can really get word out because the new generation of gamers are getting used to this and it’s becoming an ok thing to expect, so the old timers like us get slowly silenced.

  4. Tubby McChubbles says:

    I think this needs reiteration.
    Whaaaat.

  5. Antsy says:

    I can’t cope with DLC at this level, and it just makes me say no thanks.

    I finished Mass Effect 2 and never felt the urge to return to it. I’d love to play through the extra content that DLC such as The Shadow Broker brought but it needed to be part of my original playthrough for me to enjoy it . With that in mind I expect i’ll be playing Mass Effect 3 sometime in 2014.

    • Torn says:

      GOTY edition on sale if it ever comes out on Steam, for sure. If not t hen I won’t be getting it as Origin is going nowhere near my computer.

    • Antsy says:

      Absolutely. I haven’t gone near Dragon Age 2 yet either, as the DLC for the first one was much the same story as Mass Effect 2. I’ll wait for a complete edition of that, although it doesn’t seem that I missed out on anything.

    • LintMan says:

      @Antsy – yeah, when I discovered I’d missed the DA2 pre-order deadline for the free hunk of DLC that added some companion to the game, I decided to screw that and wait for the ultimate/gold/goty/etc version. I’m quite content to wait, and if they never come out with one (like with ME2), that’s fine too.

  6. DogKiller says:

    The marketing campaign for Mass Effect 3 has effectively given me some kind of consumer shellshock. Not that I’d ever buy it, but there’s so much DLC that I’m bewildered by it all and just switch off entirely everytime I see something about it. In fact, their marketing has done more to turn me off the game than anything else.

    Between the ridiculous amounts of tie in DLC, abuse of government websites for their viral marketing campaigns (which effectively debases the value of all legitmate petitions on there), countless versions of the same trailers and other stupid marketing stunts, I just don’t care any more. It’s completely turned me off. Origin and other misgivings aside, I probably would have picked the game up to finish the triology. Whether the game is actually any good is now completely irrelevant to me because I start to feel nauseous every time I see the Mass Effect logo.

    • Swanny says:

      Same here. It’s ruined the series for me, as well as steepening the angle of the slippery slope that gaming’s on. I figure i’ll pick up a used copy in the fall, while dodging spoilers as best i can. I’d like to see how the story ends, without pirating, without the publisher getting a dime from me.

    • Baralis says:

      Agreed, this game more than the others seems like a product designed to print money and less like an exciting end to the story.

      Of course all games are designed to make money but for some reason the hype for ME3 has really turned me off the series. Despite having multiple characters from ME1 & 2 I have no desire to pick up this game and complete the story, I’m probably in the minority here!

    • Astatine says:

      @DogKiller

      “abuse of government websites for their viral marketing campaigns”

      That sounds worth discussing, have you got a link?

  7. D3xter says:

    Although I don’t think that figure regarding the hardware is quite correct, I’d like to point out this Forbes article regarding the DLC-controversy of paid Day1 DLC cut from the game: http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2012/02/24/why-the-exploitation-of-gamers-is-our-own-damn-fault-2/

    • DigitalSignalX says:

      Nice read, but I wish he’d focus more on the last line of the article. Game companies need to understand that their audience is not a faceless wall of aggregated marketing statistics and demographics. We are passionate, vocal, and help shape their future products more then any other billion dollar industry I can think of.

      So when you find yourself saying “EA only cares about making money” it also means, “EA doesn’t care about the player.” – which shouldn’t be true if they want to survive in a market where the consumers routinely interact with developers in a more meaningful way then their wallets.

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      His main point needs to be restated on every gaming site where DLC is an issue. You are the problem when you pay for DLC (or stupidly high release day prices or ‘microtransactions’ etc). If you happily fork over your pounds/dollars/euros/shekels/doubloons for this crap they will keep pushing you to see how much they can get out of you before you say enough is enough.

      As someone else stated above, you do not have to consume every piece of content released across the world. I don’t have enough time to play all the games, watch all the movies & TV shows, read all the books & listen to all the music I already own never mind all the stuff I’m interested in which will be released during the rest of my lifetime.

  8. SquareWheel says:

    The pirates win again.

  9. wodin says:

    Seems most of it gives away the same DLC content… a collector assault rifle.

  10. caddyB says:

    You gotta do the cooking by the book.

  11. JohnArr says:

    After playing the multi, I was pleasantly surprised that there was no real money ‘premium’ option alongside the ‘recruit’ and ‘veteran’ packs.

    Plenty of space left in the UI for that icon though…

  12. Goomich says:

    He counts both Collector’s edition and From dust DLC plus half of them have “Collector Assault Rifle unlock DLC/Powerup”. Is that one “Collector Assault Rifle unlock DLC/Powerup” or 8 diffrent?

    • Flint says:

      I’d imagine that each one gives you access to the Collector Rifle if you didn’t have it beforehand, and upgrades the weapon if you already had it. So basically getting all eight gives you the weapon with maxed-out stats.

  13. phuzz says:

    I’ve just finished replaying ME2, and was feeling a bit nickel and dimed by the DLC on that*, but this is turning a possibly ina month or two purchase into a GOTY in a sale purchase.

    *seriously, forcing me to use money to buy points to buy DLC where I’m always left with a few points left, but never enough to buy something else is just taking the piss.

  14. Jeremy says:

    I don’t understand how there is still a successful model for this type of DLC. Clearly people are buying into it, or a company like EA would simply pull the plug. For me, when there are so many varieties of DLC based on buying multiple pieces of hardware, figurines, shirts, etc. it makes me in turn just want nothing to do with it. When you flood the market with so many possible DLC combinations, it just ends up reducing the value of any DLC on an individual basis. I don’t need gun or armor skins.

  15. edit says:

    If a game stands alone without its DLC, I ignore the DLC. If a game is lacking without its DLC, I ignore the game.

    Call me old fashioned, but I like it when a game is a singular, self-contained thing that offers the same to everyone who plays it. The exception in which I consider DLC is when it is a fairly priced, quality expansion pack for the game. Fallout NV DLC is a nice example, although I skipped all that as well.

  16. luckyb0y says:

    Why anyone would want all of it? If I like Star Wars do I also need to buy all the action figures or my experience won’t be complete? It’s not like they cut out half the game and charge you money for it. It’s just some lame weapons and armour that might appeal to OCD sufferers (completists) everyone else can just carry on.

  17. flib says:

    I like how he lists the Collector’s Edition and then also lists the “From Ashes” DLC separately, even though it comes WITH the CE.

  18. Winged Nazgul says:

    Pandora’s Box.

    Sad to say but this is only going to get worse.

  19. TCM says:

    The headline’s kind of sensationalist isn’t it? I mean, just considering you at no point mention in the article you are expected to preorder the game no fewer than 3 times, and buy a140 dollar keyboard for the express purpose of an unlock code.

    I’m just saying, it’s a bit disingenuous, and will only promote kneejerk comment idiocy.

    • nrvsNRG says:

      its pathetic is’nt it

    • Snargelfargen says:

      Yeah, the headline is definitely sensationalist. I think it was supposed to come across as humorous, except we have already established that the internet takes Mass Effect way too seriously.

    • Kaira- says:

      That’s Destructoid for you.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Not a particular fan of Total Biscuit, but he makes a much better argument about why the DLC is unacceptable.

      Although he is wrong about stopping the second hand market. GAME are not trying to ‘make more profit’ they are trying to make SOME profit.

    • derbefrier says:

      Yeah I agree no one is going to buy a keyboard just because it has a dlc code for some game. Now someone who is looking for a new keyboard and is a big mass effect fan would love it amd it help him to buy it instead of something else which is the whole point. But its sounds like none of this stuff is essential to the game so what’s.the.big deal. It’s not like companies trying to make money is something new I believe some of you guys take this Shit way to seriously. It’s no different than putting.cartoon characters on lunch boxes so those evil lunch box corporations can make a few bucks off name recognition.

  20. DogKiller says:

    Also, you know EA will never release a GOTY edition, right? They will force you to buy any DLC separately at full price for all eternity.

    • Shivoa says:

      If they sold a GotY box then how would they charge you £30+ in direct sales (with no cut going to any retailer middleman)? This issue is important enough for EA to leave Steam (except for weird cases like Reckoning, which I assume is 38 Studios retaining the right to sell direct and use Steam as their partner outside of the EA partners retail relationship) so they obviously see it as very important to maximise their profits through nondiscounted DLC sales to maintain a healthy profit on their titles, a semi-F2P model (only for singleplayer games and with many customers still paying their full boxed copy price on release day).

    • jaheira says:

      Nobody is “forcing” anybody to buy anything. Which in fact sums up this boring non-issue quite well.

  21. riadsala says:

    And this is why I don’t buy new games. I wait a year or so, and then buy the “complete” version. Usually in a steam sale.

    I don’t understand why more people don’t do the same thing. It’s a lot cheaper, gives you more time to play the games you already own and enjoy, and it’s not like new games are much better than old games: usually you’re just getting a marginal improvement.

  22. Spad says:

    Bonus DLC tied to *hardware* purchases? What the fuck EA?

    It’s bad enough that you make me play pre-order roulette with every new game you release *and* now play demos for your other games *and* make me buy the collectors edition *and* make me buy it on Origin at an inflated price just to get what would previously have been “The Game” that I would buy from “A Shop”, but now you want me to buy a new keyboard and mouse as well?

    Get bent.

    • TCM says:

      If you want a single gun, that is almost certainly not worth it, and will probably be sold separately for a still high 3 bucks, sure, that’s what they want you to do.

    • Ergates_Antius says:

      Er, that’s not exactly how it works.

      They’re not saying “If you want the DLC you must buy this keyboard”, they’re saying “If you buy this keyboard, will throw in a little bonus DLC with it”. It’s not EA who are selling the keyboards, toys, etc., it’s just a marketing tie in.

  23. codename_bloodfist says:

    RPS, coverage please: http://i.imgur.com/swov2.jpg
    It’s your patriotic duty, gens.

    • DogKiller says:

      Agreed. That’s fricken outrageous.

    • Kdansky says:

      Site works for me. That’s ludicrous; Abusing a government instrument for marketing purposes.

    • codename_bloodfist says:

      The site works for everybody.

    • DogKiller says:

      Can it actually be considered illegal? I know a few prank petitions have popped up there in the past, but they weren’t for commercial profit. EA and Mischief PR have attempted to use it for their own financial gain.

    • caddyB says:

      EA/Origin customer support is so bad. SO BAD.

    • The_B says:

      Whereas I too don’t agree with the marketing campaign, I don’t think the argument was made in the right place – moderators are going to have incredibly little knowledge of or anything to do with marketing campaigns. Often, they’re not even done by anybody working directly on the game, but a completely separate team – sometimes not even anything to do with the developers.

      It’s sad, but that’s just how it works, so I can see why that Moderator may have been confused or sceptical.

    • simoroth says:

      I’d like to see RPS cover this too. Totally unacceptable.

    • nrvsNRG says:

      holy shit thats fucked up

    • InternetBatman says:

      I’m not a British citizen, but that is way over the line. Viral marketing is a scummy concept, but that is terrible.

    • subedii says:

      So it’s official then.

      And utterly utterly idiotic. Either EA are idiots for commissioning this, or they need to keep tighter reins on their idiot marketing partners.

      Either way, a marketing campaign trying to waste freaking parliament time just so they can get this advertising… Wow. It’s like they’re actively TRYING to paint themselves as irresponsible jerks now.

      EDIT:

      To forestall the inevitable (because there is ALWAYS someone willing to defend such practices), no, I genuinely do not care that you think that time in Parliament is wasted anyway, that politicians don’t say anything of value, or any of your other half-baked explanations on why it doesn’t matter. IT. DOES.

      Parliament does not exist to be your company / product advertising venue, in any way, shape or form.

    • andytt66 says:

      Wha? Okay, someone needs to be roundly spanked for that one.

      Kudos for keeping a relatively sane head with a mod who appeared to be deliberately provoking you at times.

      EDIT: Although I admit that “OK EA…. you can download my signature for 3 euro, or 320MSP!” in a related page made me laugh

  24. Gesadt says:

    i look forward to seeing torrent copies of ME3 with all dlc enabled by default

    • nrvsNRG says:

      waiting for blackbox

    • marcusfell says:

      If EA has any brains left after this stunt, they’ll encrypt the files.

      Although if someone does figure out how to crack it…

    • Nim says:

      I do not see any gain of using encryption. These are game files, not internal company secrets and in order for the game to run it needs access to unencrypted data.

      If they encrypt the files, they will have to decrypt the files on the user’s machines, using the user’s processing power. The key must be sent from EA and could be intercepted by simply logging all communications between the user’s machine and EA or it is hidden somewhere on the user’s machine. Also the decryption algorithm would need to be present on the user’s machine in order to decrypt the files and suddenly all the pieces are available for technical people to break the encryption.

      Encryption is used more to prevent early access to content as there is no need to release the key until then forcing those who would decrypt to try and brute-force the key or guess.

  25. Zepp says:

    Back to the roots where games were just filler content in commercials.

    Ride the hamster wheel geeky peon!

  26. Gap Gen says:

    I want DLC that allows you to buy each line of code separately. Want animations to load? $5! Want the sound library not to deallocate its memory and crash the game? $5! Et cetera.

  27. Moleman says:

    To be a bit of a smartass about this, I wasn’t aware that books, keyboards, and action figures were now considered DLC.

    More seriously, this is just “We’ve tossed in a special +damage cheat code and a fancy hat for Garrus in all our spinoff merchandise!” It’s goofy, but not even remotely on the order of the actual problematic DLC (From Dust looks to continue the irritating “DLC that runs concurrent to the game itself” trend from DA2, which I am not a fan of, as the threaded nature of the DLC punishes trying the main game out before getting DLC). If we’re counting entire price of the actual physical object that the in-game junk comes with as the actual price of the DLC, then I think I’ve got a $60 hat from a Skyrim preorder in TF2.

    • Milky1985 says:

      “To be a bit of a smartass about this, I wasn’t aware that books, keyboards, and action figures were now considered DLC.”

      Its considered DLC simply because those things mentioned all come with codes to activate things within the game (note the word “activate”). Stuff like squareenix figures don’t count because they are just figures.

      [EDIT] To clarify the activate comment, am starting to read reports flying around saying that the “from ashes” dlc on xbox live is a 150k download, which smells a lot like activate on disc content patch size to me. Admitidly this is all hearsay atm but will find out in a week or so.

  28. Flint says:

    It’s rather ridiculous, but I don’t find this that outrageous. The From Ashes DLC is the only one that gives actual content; the rest are either bonus armor for singleplayer, bonus weapons for multiplayer or special upgrade packs for the multiplayer (which contain the same items you can get in multiplayer normally but with a better drop rate/larger amount of items given). So pretty much nothing important if you only care for the singleplayer (beyond From Ashes), and only minorly relevant if you’re massively obsessed about the multiplayer.

    Now if this was all or mostly story content/additional characters/etc, it’d be far worse.

  29. Brun says:

    Design-by-marketing garbage. I wasn’t going to be buying this game anyway, this just seals the deal.

    • TCM says:

      Considering only one of those bits of DLC has any actual content for the game proper, and not just some multiplayer weapon or alternate appearance or whatever, oh well. I’ll be over here playing a game that still has a ton of content.

    • Brun says:

      It doesn’t really matter what the content is. The fact that there is this much DLC attached to so many different products means that they spent too much of their budget on marketing and not enough on actually making a decent game.

      Remember when games sold because they were actually good games, instead of because they had the biggest marketing budget? We need to go back to that, ASAP. We don’t need any more travesties – nay, abominations – like MW3.

    • TCM says:

      Because the marketing department+budget is directly tied to the development department+budget, and one affects the other.

      I dunno, maybe that’s true for a tiny startup company, but do you really think that EA, of all companies, will split a single budget between marketing, development, testing, sound design, etc, instead of giving them all their own budgets?

    • Brun says:

      When you add up the budgets or costs for those separate divisions you get the total budget for the game. EA may not fix that total budget (or the individual department budgets) but you can be almost certain that they at least have a target for how much they want making, marketing, and selling ME3 to cost. That target is going to affect how they allocate funds to each department.

      Of course this is all speculation since neither of us have intimate details regarding EA’s internal accounting. My point is that at some point, somebody at EA has to decide how much to spend on each aspect of development. Whoever is making that decision is putting too much money in the marketing budget and not enough elsewhere.

    • TCM says:

      I see. Just for the record, I have played the demo, and the game is very fun. It has a solid (better than expected) multiplayer mode that doesn’t lose out on key elements of the main game while streamlining several concepts for the online environment, a cinematic flair in the cutscenes that matches previous games, excellent voice acting and animation, and combat and inventory systems that successfully mesh the best bits of ME1 and 2 while leaving some of the lesser bits on the cutting room floor. (Inventory Overload in ME1, lack of weapon variety in ME2)

  30. Jimbo says:

    More like ман$$ €₣₣€¢₮ 3 amirite??

  31. Inglourious Badger says:

    Yeah, but, who actually buys this stuff? Please tell me nobody actually goes and buys this stuff!?!

    It’s like buying a car for £10,000, and then spending £7500 on bigger wing mirrors, £5000 to get the key to the mysteriously locked glove-box and £3000 on a lightly perfumed ashtray to fill that random hole in the dash board.

    If we can find and freeze the bank accounts of whichever crazy billionaire keeps buying this stuff then we can finally convince publishers we won’t pay them to take stuff out of games to sell back to us at inflated prices!

    • TCM says:

      The assumption you’re making is that stuff is actually being taken out of the game, as opposed to left on the cutting room floor early on as a result of schedule issues, or animation difficulties (Shale, DA1).

      Once a game has gone gold on time for its projected release date, there’s a couple things for the dev team to do: Day 1 patches, and Day 1 DLC. And what’s first on the list for DLC? Stuff that was dropped from the main game early on.

      Think of it as like a movie having a chance to actually finish up unfinished scenes, and oh hey, look at all those “Extended Edition” and “Director’s Cut” dvds.

    • Skabooga says:

      To be fair, most cars have options which you have to pay extra money for, as well as standard editions and luxury editions. But regardless, your analogy still stands.

    • Optimaximal says:

      Bad Analogy.

      The ‘Directors Cut’ is the equivalent of the later-released ‘GOTY’ Edition. You don’t buy the Directors Cut as always-full-priced add-on content.

  32. Tiax says:

    I’m not gonna rage over a mere video-game.

    It simply dumbfounds me to see such commercial practices when most of the industry is whining about people pirating games. How can having so many DLCs *not* push people into simply grabbing a torrent ?

    • TCM says:

      “I don’t want to pay for this optional content that adds nothing real to the game, so I am going to steal the entire game despite its price being the same as almost every other game on the market.”

      Of all the weak justifications for piracy, “BUT THE DLC BAAAAAW” is the weakest. Don’t want the bonus crap, don’t pay for it! That’s the idea of the model.

    • Apples says:

      What about pirating the DLC? If it adds nothing, it’s worthless. If it’s worthless, or I wasn’t going to buy it anyway because I think it adds nothing, no lost sale… right??

    • TCM says:

      Clearly it’s worth something to you if you’re willing to spend time finding and downloading it.

    • Apples says:

      Ah yes, those strenuous five minutes typing “Mass Effect 3 DLC” into the pirate bay and clicking ‘download torrent’. I’m not actually planning on pirating the DLC but if it’s that easy to do so and the DLC is so small and pointless, I can see why a lot of people would do so just out of curiosity.

    • Enso says:

      There is absolutely minimal effort involved in pirating anything. It takes about 60 seconds.

      Edit: Beaten to the punch.

    • TCM says:

      It’s five minutes you could have spent doing something else. Also, actually testing it out within the game — well, let’s say you decide you like it. Would you then pay money for it? Or would you keep justifying and rationalizing the fact that you have avoided paying for something that is only available legally if you actually drop a few bucks.

      I’m not going to make some stupid analogy like “WOULD YOU TAKE A CAR” because that’s clearly dumb. I am going to say that if you believe something is worth using/playing, it should be worth spending money on, either as a donation or a purchase.

    • The_B says:

      I think, frankly, you’ll be hard pushed for the most part – most of the DLC is multiplayer. So unless EA don’t have any way of ensuring pirated DLC isn’t used in the multiplayer you’ll probably never see it even if you did do that.

      So yes, it may take 60 seconds to pirate something – to get it working however in this case might take more effort.

    • Apples says:

      Hmm, true. I didn’t consider that because I never play multiplayer games and was thinking more about the single-player extra mission/companion type stuff. Multiplayer DLC pirating seems a bit dodgier to me, not because of extra time invested but because competitive multiplayer DLC is basically money in exchange for showing off to or being better than other people in the game; if you don’t pay you’re sort of ‘cheating’ everyone else playing, not just the company.

    • SanguineAngel says:

      “I am going to say that if you believe something is worth using/playing, it should be worth spending money on, either as a donation or a purchase.”

      That is where I think your logic falls down. Not everything has a monetary value, especially something as nebulous as an experience.

      Personally, I would probably enjoy the use of a different looking gun or skin in a multiplayer experience, for example, and would play to unlock challenges but I have never and would never pay even a penny for it.

  33. MichaelPalin says:

    Mass Effect: Skylanders?

  34. RedViv says:

    That sum of money does not matter at all. Magazines arriving in the mail for people in Europe, reporting that the selection of weapons in ME3 is indeed a bit on the wee side, contrasting a few dozen opportunities to nab those as bonuses somewhere, that’s another issue entirely.

  35. JackDandy says:

    All this stuff EA-Bioware’s been pulling lately is really disgusting.

    I’m glad I’m not a fan of their games- I would have felt terribly betrayed if I were.

  36. perilousrob says:

    disingenuous link-bait crap. This is not all DLC, nor is it relevant to the main game, nor does it cost that much, nor do you need to pay it to get those upgrades!

  37. AMonkey says:

    And to think I used to like Bioware and was ambivalent to EA.

  38. Bluerps says:

    Stuff like this has taught me to not be a completist regarding DLC. My game isn’t complete until I buy some action figures and a keyboard? Well, then it will never be complete – I can live with that.

  39. Nim says:

    I will probably play ME3 but after that I think I and Bioware/EA will go separate ways.

  40. Beelzebud says:

    It’s going to get even worse, before it gets any better. Some of us tried to warn everyone about this too, but we’re just “haters”, what do we know?

    Just keep buying that crap, don’t be a hater!

  41. Messiah Complex says:

    Carter starts the conversation at the right point (day one narrative content DLC), but all the discussion about unlockable weapons and such (which I consider to be cosmetic DLC) seems to be mostly a tangent. The real question is how much narrative DLC they’re going to throw at us, and what the total cost of that will be. That’s the number I fear.

    In my view, the base game costs 70 USD. I’ll wait to see if further story-arc DLC is announced, and if it’s priced. If so, I won’t buy the game. I’m not paying $80, $100, or more to get the full experience out of a single game.

  42. elnalter says:

    A pirates life for me!

  43. Suits says:

    I’d buy the normal edition if it includes day-1 DLC, otherwise I will just use the Origin-less version

  44. Unaco says:

    $870? That’s nothing! Do you want Double Fine’s Kickstarter funded adventure, with the soundtrack, DVD, Poster, physical artbook and a mini portrait of yourself? That’ll be $1,000 please (which you can’t actually get as it’s ‘sold out’ now).

  45. TsunamiWombat says:

    RE: The Upgrading Collector Rifle

    All multi-player weapons upgrade over time using the recruit/veteran packs you purchased with credits for completing mission objectives.

  46. aircool says:

    I don’t care about DLC much (although I do tend to buy some of the more spectacular CE’s, whether they come with DLC or not) as long as it doesn’t give any advantage over players who don’t have it.

    If they are selling DLC that gives players an advantage over others, or unlocks something that should have been in the game in the first place (bit subjective that last point…) then they can shove it back up their hoop.

    If EA wanted to make an extra pile of cash, they should have churned out a lot more content for Battleforge… and probably a sci-fi version as well.

  47. Parrk says:

    But if you didn’t play any of the ME2 dlc then you will have little understanding of the specifics behind the TRIAL…that doesn’t occur. Oh well, looks like that POS DLC is completely worthless after all.

    Don’t forget about stolen mammary! That DLC was a glorified package for unlocking the Locust which made solo hard and insanity modes easier for certain underpowered classes. Another benefit was that they gave you a companion that you had to take to the final encounter with you in order to avoid a random death roll for her and consequently having to play that encounter again.

    I can’t knock shadow broker though. That was solid DLC.

  48. Shooop says:

    EA as usual, just trying to see how much they can get away with before everyone realizes what they’re doing.

    Knowing the average gamer (PC ones included), it’ll take a lot more than this to finally reach critical mass.

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      Wait, what are they doing? “Critical Mass”? What do you mean?
      Oh God, what’s going on? Do I need to install a bomb shelter?

    • Shooop says:

      Oh no, I’ve said too much. They’re already on their way aren’t they? That’s them who’ve just pulled into my driveway now isn’t it? I’M SORRY FOR EVERYTH-

  49. SuperNashwanPower says:

    Well this is all very interesting.

    So, anyone heard anything about the release STALKER recently?

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      My stalker was released on bail three days ago. It’s actually a very sensitive subject for me. Thanks a lot for bringing it up. God.

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