EA recently announced that their strategy on DLC for their AAA games will continue as planned. After the intense backlash from gamers, you’d think this that problem would have gone away? Not quite, as the wallets of gamers told a different story. Mass Effect 3’s Day 1 DLC had a 40% attach rate to the game. 40% of the people who purchased ME3 also purchased the DLC in some way. I shouldn’t have to make it obvious why this is a problem. Using Peter Moore’s own words,
…Not only are you selling a $60 game…you’re selling $20 DLC, so the sale becomes $80.
When did it become okay for a publisher to sell us a $60 game, and then to sell the content already made for the game right back to us? When did everyone else become okay with it? I just can’t purchase something at full price that gives me half of an experience, and expects me to pay to unlock the rest. Instead of deliberately ripping content from games, why can’t they release the full game for everyone, and offer reasonable expansions down the road?
Game development is expensive, no doubt about it. I can see why a developer may want to sell DLC to make up the costs of developing a game. I can’t see why a developer would want to cut out an important piece of their game to sell as a ‘reward’ for consumers that blindly purchase things. I’ve always been sympathetic to a developer’s plight for money, but when a game’s marketing budget exceeds the real price of a game by three times I see a problem with this industry. They’re even proud of these numbers, because their games wouldn’t sell without the intense marketing. The quality of the game means little now. Giving a game a $50 million marketing budget will make sure that it sells enough to get everyone at the marketing department a nice bonus.
It’s a shame that this business will continue, and it’s even more frustrating that I’ll have to keep writing about it. I’ll keep making fun of them too. Consumers have shown EA that they are okay with it. I’m sick of every AAA game ending in a scheme, because a bunch of gamers followed their latest toy like a bunch of lemmings. I’m not sure if there will be a tipping point to the controversy, but the only way to end this is to stop buying their games.