Let's Debate: Early DLC Announcements

Since I am, in some semblance, returned to the forums, I would like to start a new series of topics I will be calling Let’s Debate. The concept is simple: I will find a topic on the forums that seems to have heated and passionate discussions surrounding them, and give them a proper forum to reach their conclusion. (That’s big wordy Irish speak for “a place to resolve arguments”)

The rules are equally simple:
You will remain civil at all times. Any comments that attack or belittle another member will be met with the proper infractions.
You will remain on topic. The purpose of these threads is to resolve or at least exhaust arguments that have been derailing other threads.

That’s really it, very simple. With that, let’s start the inaugural topic of debate!


Ah yes, a source of ire among many gamers. A new game is coming out, and you are super excited about it. You’ve watched all the trailers, followed all the news. Your calendar is marked with the final release date. Then, a month before the release, the developer announces something that offends you to the core. Paid, downloadable content. Your first reaction is anger. “The game isn’t even out yet, and now I have to pay even more money?” you shout as you violently shake your flat screen monitor in frustration. That’s the reality these days, and there is a wide range of mixed feelings about it. There are also many reasons why there may be supplemental content released early in a game’s life, either due to contractual obligations with production companies or time/budget constraints in the development process.

So, how do you feel about early DLC announcements? Remember, be civil and stay on topic. Let’s Debate!

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It’s part of the game business these days, nothing is going to change that. How I feel about it depends on how it’s done.

But I’m a patient man, I’ll often just wait for the complete/GotY edition if I want all the DLC for any given game.

There are really two ways DLCs are implemented these days. The first way being how Battleborn or Borderlands have done it - little extra bits that are really cool, cheap, and simply implemented because the devs still wanted to keep adding more stuff despite the main game being finished. Perfect example being the Headhunter DLC for Borderlands 2.
The second way is how a number of other game developers have done it - the DLC is used to monetize all the parts of the game that really should have been integrated with the base game, but weren’t, for the sake of monetization. Examples being the Zombies mode in the Call of Duty series, where what previously would have been added in a free update now must be paid for.

It’s interesting, though, as both can be looked at in different ways.

I follow the same principle if it’s not a priority game. For example, Mass Effect Andromeda, I’m going to try to get on launch and then whatever DLC comes, I’ll buy for it as it comes out.

But like said, it’s a part of the business nowadays. I usually don’t like it but it does extend or refresh the game most times which is the only aspect of it that I like. But it is fun to see how far games have gone to where DLC for games is almost expected. I remember the days of Expansion Packs and you weren’t guaranteed them plus it was a much bigger deal when an expansion dropped.

We need to go back to actual expansions, instead of beating every last penny out of the consumer by microtransactions.
Dropped various publishers for that reason alone. Only reason 2K isn’t on that list is simply because BL3, but I even fear the worst for that game.

These practises already soured Battleborn for me, which is why I was on hiatus from that game for 2 months and stil only play sporadically.

There’s some wiggle room for early announcement in my book.

If a dev were to announce X DLC will be available 60 days from launch and will implement feature A, B, and C then I can take it. Like AMG said, it’s the reality of the gaming these days, getting mad about it is about as sane as ‘Old Man Yells at Cloud’

But if it’s additional features being offered, especially as Day 1 paid content in the form of an entire game mode that is possibly enough to put me off from a purchase altogether. Weapon/cosmetics are meh, generally that’s the sort of thing I’ll skip on anyway so it being there is pretty easy to ignore.

It is a case by case issue.

In some case people like seeing early announcement where it shows support after release, on the other hand it shows how shallow the game potentially can be and needs DLCs to deliver the “complete” experience.

What worst is vague DLC that really doesn’t tell you what you are getting, so you are blindly investing in things you might not even like nor want. People can debate early DLC announcement all they want but I think both sides would agree that these DLC announcement should clearly communicate what it is that the customer is getting since they have no problem charging an exact price for it up front.

Good stuff in here so far, I like it. Seems everyone agrees it is very circumstantial. Let’s get more specific, because why not.

Recently there was an unprecedented announcement - DLC for a Zelda game. Not only that, but the first of the 2 announced expansions contains features that have been present in most of the more recent Zelda games: Hero Mode and a challenge dungeon. Now, I admit I got a little burned up in the other thread about these items, so I’m still going to remain silent in this thread to avoid my bias. However, there was a point made that, since these had become common features in recent games, it felt like they were stripped out and sold back to us. The argument can be made that time and budget did not allow for these features to be included at release, but that still begs the question of whether you should have to PAY for these features.

Can you justify cutting features due to development constraints, then charging for the DLC that adds them in later?

In the case of something like Hero Mode, I feel that should just be patched in later. I’m not buying a difficulty level for Zelda. At the same time, what they do with DLC will have no effect on the amount of fun I have with the game.