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Thread: My view on DLCs

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  1. #1
    Network Hub slick_101's Avatar
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    My view on DLCs

    For me. DLCs are probably the biggest gripe of modern gaming. Well I say modern. Rather in the last 5 years or so. Let me explain what I mean. To me it feels as if when you buy a game, you aren't actually buying a full product; you're buying a product about 80% done ( Fallout 3 springs to mind straight away). or in some cases you're spending £10 on a few maps *cough * CoD *cough cough* and it just doesn't seem right. Now don't get me wrong here, I know some of you will say "but expansion packs have been around for ages!" Yeah. that's the thing EXPANSION PACKS! Take for instance Red alert 2. you have an entire game with a whole story line to play around with. With the release of Red alert 2: Yuri's revenge you get not only an entire new faction, new maps, new story line and new units for both the Allied and the Soviet. the same could be said about Age of mythology (by the creators of Age of Empires). Even Call of Duty 4 (when it felt like Activision were the good guys) gave away the maps for free on the PC.

    So then I look at the games post 2009 and they are all filled with DLC content, though might not be expensive (say £5 or something) it feels as if you are missing out if you don't have that special player skin everybody is talking about.

    Another issue is when the developers say they would of added the content/put it on the disk but they didn't have time to implement it or it wasn't finished in time to be put on the disk.... And then they charge for it.

    (And yes for the references to the games above I did look at my game shelf of which ones I have been playing recently)
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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Grizzly's Avatar
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    But if I say, look at Fallout New Vegas, those are four expansion packs right there. DLC allows people to continue working and producing content for a game with much more 'focused' planning then Expansion packs did. (Since with an expansion pack, its like "We have to include all this content or people will smash it!", not so with DLC).

    Also... it has been going on a bit longer then you think. I think BF2 also had some DLC packs already.

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    Network Hub slick_101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzly View Post
    Also... it has been going on a bit longer then you think. I think BF2 also had some DLC packs already.
    yeah, there was armoured fury but that was after 2 expansion packs (special ops and Euro force)
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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sabrage's Avatar
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    When they start pricing it relative to its value, I'll start buying it. Usually I just wait for the GOTY or Complete pack though.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by sabrage View Post
    When they start pricing it relative to its value, I'll start buying it. Usually I just wait for the GOTY or Complete pack though.
    Agreed. At the moment DLC operates as an incentive not to buy a game at release.

    It's strange thinking back to when DLC was an exciting concept. Continued support and new content for a game sounds great, but it comes at a high price, and sometimes the DLC is ripped right out of the game's original content.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Snargelfargen View Post
    At the moment DLC operates as an incentive not to buy a game at release.
    This x1000. Goatees for the win.

    And, as mentioned, the use of DLC as a preorder incentive is frustrating because I'm never going to preorder anything, ever.
    Last edited by zookeeper; 09-01-2012 at 01:59 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sabrage View Post
    When they start pricing it relative to its value, I'll start buying it.
    What is the value though? People always compare it to the base game, as in "the main game is 40 hours for $40, why would I spend $10 on 3 hours more content?"

    The answer to that, of course, is "Okay, why not buy a second copy of the game and play through it all again then?"

    If you're looking at the game before playing or even purchasing it, yes, the DLC is a rip-off, as the base game is much better value. But once you've played through that base game, the value of it to you is now much reduced as you've already played it once. In that case, the premium price of DLC may well be worth it if you really want a few more new bits.

    I also have the same objections as most people to DLC that has literally been stripped out of the game to be sold back at a later date. But this is far, far rarer than most people seem to think.

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sabrage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UnravThreads View Post
    And when you think about it, five or ten years ago, didn't we have to enter codes in-game to unlock "exclusive" content? Maps, costumes et al? That seems a little bit more ridiculous, does it not?
    My, how the times have changed.

    Quote Originally Posted by deano2099 View Post
    What is the value though? People always compare it to the base game, as in "the main game is 40 hours for $40, why would I spend $10 on 3 hours more content?"
    Charging $15 for map packs that were already rendered for previous games isn't just ridiculous, it's sickening.

    The answer to that, of course, is "Okay, why not buy a second copy of the game and play through it all again then?"
    Of... Course... I guess your argument makes sense when applied to the type of person who buys three or four games a year, and only plays those until they've exhausted them. Me, I like variety, and when I'm done with a game I like to be done.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sabrage View Post
    Of... Course... I guess your argument makes sense when applied to the type of person who buys three or four games a year, and only plays those until they've exhausted them. Me, I like variety, and when I'm done with a game I like to be done.
    Which is fine. If you're concerned about value, it's almost always better value to buy a whole new game than buy DLC. The DLC is there for people that really like the game and are willing to pay a premium for a bit more of that game rather than buying a new one at a better price.

    There's a misguided belief that goes around the internet that DLC is meant to be for everyone. It's not. No DLC will ever sell to everyone who bought the game. As you say, you play and move on. That's what the majority of people do. But there's nothing wrong with selling some extra bits and pieces to people that really want to play some more. And of course it's going to cost more as it will only sell a fraction of the number of copies.

    [Sidenote: I'd actually imagine that most DLC is under-priced in terms of cost / content / sales figures - in other words, that DLC that costs 3x as much per hour as the base game is likely selling to 10% of customers, not 33%].

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Althea's Avatar
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    Why does Fallout 3 spring to mind? You have 5 high quality packs for a low price with a LOT of content. New Vegas is 4 packs with a similar price-to-content ratio. Your FO3 and New Vegas experiences are no less complete without the DLC, but they enhance various aspects of the fringe lore/story - even Broken Steel for FO3 really doesn't do all that much for the main story beyond 'fix' the ending - and even then I presume it can be 'fixed' via mods. And generally, Bethesda seem to not work on DLC until after the game has gone gold - They'll plan for it and so on, but it's a post-launch thing.

    GTA IV from Rockstar did the same - TLaD and TBoGT added to the experience, but in separate ways. They all intertwine in a way I felt rather clever of Rockstar, and unlike some DLC they didn't affect the main game at all.

    DLC is great if it's done right - Item packs, cosmetic items, story additions - and they can enhance or compliment your game experience. But if it's done wrong, it can leave you sour or perhaps even 'ruin' the game. DLC needs to come with management tools (Bethesda have these for the PC via the Data Files option) to allow you to enable/disable it, and it also needs to seamlessly integrate itself if possible.


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by UnravThreads View Post
    Why does Fallout 3 spring to mind? You have 5 high quality packs for a low price with a LOT of content. New Vegas is 4 packs with a similar price-to-content ratio. Your FO3 and New Vegas experiences are no less complete without the DLC, but they enhance various aspects of the fringe lore/story - even Broken Steel for FO3 really doesn't do all that much for the main story beyond 'fix' the ending - and even then I presume it can be 'fixed' via mods.
    Mothership Zeta enhances the lore?

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Althea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wizardry View Post
    Mothership Zeta enhances the lore?
    I never got that complaint. FO1 and, especially, FO2 had rather bizarre moments like aliens and so on, so I don't get the hate for MSZ. Yeah, it wasn't particularly great, but your NPCs gave some little hints about parts of the Wasteland or even pre-Great War.

    Was it FO3's finest moment and Bethesda's wisest choice? No, I don't think it was, but taken as an experience? I think it outshone a lot of DLC, and the gear you got was fairly useful depending on what you'd done before that point.


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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UnravThreads View Post
    I never got that complaint. FO1 and, especially, FO2 had rather bizarre moments like aliens and so on, so I don't get the hate for MSZ.
    The downed saucer and alien blaster were easter eggs in FO1 and FO2. FO3's MSZ turned it into lore. It's the difference between an in-joke and a spinoff.
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    Network Hub SMiD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wizardry View Post
    Mothership Zeta enhances the lore?
    Ha! I was thinking the same thing. +rep
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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UnravThreads View Post
    Why does Fallout 3 spring to mind? You have 5 high quality packs for a low price with a LOT of content. New Vegas is 4 packs with a similar price-to-content ratio. Your FO3 and New Vegas experiences are no less complete without the DLC, but they enhance various aspects of the fringe lore/story - even Broken Steel for FO3 really doesn't do all that much for the main story beyond 'fix' the ending - and even then I presume it can be 'fixed' via mods. And generally, Bethesda seem to not work on DLC until after the game has gone gold - They'll plan for it and so on, but it's a post-launch thing.
    The memorable part of Fallout 3 for me? Operation Anchorage. Hands down. Still, your main point stands. Fallout 3 wasn't handicapped by the DLC development process as far as I can tell. Elements of certain DLC just happened to outshine the main product.

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Althea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    The memorable part of Fallout 3 for me? Operation Anchorage. Hands down. Still, your main point stands. Fallout 3 wasn't handicapped by the DLC development process as far as I can tell. Elements of certain DLC just happened to outshine the main product.
    Yeah, pretty much. I think the same went for New Vegas - They certainly added to the game, but I think you could easily play without them. The Courier's Stash pack for NV does disrupt the balance a little, but only at the start and I'd say it actually enhances the experience if you're rolling melée or explosives as it dampens the difficulty curve a little.

    I also hate that "but the DLC is on the disc!" argument. I think there's times when it's acceptable to be annoyed, but largely? No, I don't think so. When you get a Magicka patch after the DLC releases, do you not have it on your PC? Should Arrowhead give it to you for free? No, I don't think so. DLC on the disc (or in patches) is a great way to ensure balance and to stop the community being divided. With BioShock 2 it was on the disc so that people with the Sinclair whatsit pack could play with those who don't and vice versa - it allows the community to be united. With Magicka, it allows a group to play that pack or see those costumes/items even if they don't own it, and that means the cost of entry is lower. Someone could buy the game for £2 on offer and join in with their friends on the latest pack, and perhaps even go and buy it later. If that system isn't used, you end up with something like Fable 3's system where if you want to play co-op properly, you need to download some free packs of DLC that give you the files so that you can play with those who have it - you don't get it for your character, though. That's a poor system, it's cumbersome and ridiculous in my opinion.

    And when you think about it, five or ten years ago, didn't we have to enter codes in-game to unlock "exclusive" content? Maps, costumes et al? That seems a little bit more ridiculous, does it not?


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    Quote Originally Posted by UnravThreads View Post
    DLC on the disc (or in patches) is a great way to ensure balance and to stop the community being divided. With BioShock 2 it was on the disc so that people with the Sinclair whatsit pack could play with those who don't and vice versa - it allows the community to be united.
    Makes me think of the only DLC that I dont like in any way shape or form: DLC that actually divides the community into Haves and Have-Nots with map packs or weapon packs etc... in PvP multiplayer environments which have a pay-to-win or a simple "You will not pass this point" blockage splitting people appart. Call of Duty may get away with it, but then again they could possibly do whatever they want and some-people would buy it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slick_101 View Post
    To me it feels as if when you buy a game, you aren't actually buying a full product; you're buying a product about 80% done

    Which is stupid. You're in no position to determine whether a game is done or not, any more than you can determine whether a book is finished or a movie complete. It's also the aim of marketing DLC - they do the same thing with consumer electronics, cars and similar.
    Take for instance Red alert 2. you have an entire game with a whole story line to play around with. With the release of Red alert 2: Yuri's revenge you get not only an entire new faction, new maps, new story line and new units for both the Allied and the Soviet.
    But what if I only play skirmish, and don't need or want a new campaign? What if I don't like the third faction? The problem with expansion packs is it's all or nothing, at least with DLC you can choose which additions you want exactly, and it's usually cheaper than an expansion pack would be. To reverse the example, if all I wanted was some extra maps and units for multiplayer mode Yuri's Revenge is a rip off, justified solely on the basis it includes a campaign I'll never play and a faction I have no interest in.

    Another issue is when the developers say they would of added the content/put it on the disk but they didn't have time to implement it or it wasn't finished in time to be put on the disk.... And then they charge for it.
    Don't really see why that's an issue. After all, they're not obligated to give you the content, and unless you happen to live within walking distance of their house and are happy to loan them a USB stick distributing said content isn't free. Would you prefer it if they said they didn't have time to put the content on the disk, so you're not getting it?

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by archonsod View Post

    Don't really see why that's an issue. After all, they're not obligated to give you the content, and unless you happen to live within walking distance of their house and are happy to loan them a USB stick distributing said content isn't free. Would you prefer it if they said they didn't have time to put the content on the disk, so you're not getting it?
    Agreed. :)

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    I paid £1 pound for Magicka: The Stars Are Left
    It is crazy fun, I've got my money's worth out of it already and I've got though little of its contents.
    DLC that lack that kind of value for money is a great way for a fan to get more of a game they admire. For example traps and maps in sanctum=ace. Much dlc is just to make money with little value, but so are many games.
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