I’ve been thinking about The Sims 3 and Bioshock 2, and Dragon Age and other titles which I just haven’t picked up (and it doesn’t look like I am likely to). I know why that is. It’s the DLC/addons.
Back in the day, you used to get a game. There might or might not be an expansion pack for it. Usually not, but sometimes there was. Nevertheless, aside from your obvious sequel-planning hooks your game felt pretty complete. Even The Sims 1 felt like it was a whole game, despite the numerous add-ons.
More recently, things have changed, though.
Now I’m just not getting that feeling anymore. I feel like I’m getting half or perhaps three quarters of the game that was designed, plus a little zero-day DLC (which seems to be at least half bug-fixes), and that I’m being charged extra for the rest of the game.
It doesn’t help that games that are focused on those after-sale addons generally have a higher sticker-price than their non-DLC cousins before the nickel-and-diming starts.
Thankfully, there’s still plenty of complete, awesome games to enjoy, but if things go the way they are, there won’t be so much from the big publishers that I feel good about playing anymore – and it’s the feeling-good that is supposed to be the point, isn’t it?
I’m increasingly feeling like I’m being asked to pay more for less, and if I want the rest of the basic game, I need to pay about twice as much. Then expansions may or may not actually show up after that (usually not now, with what you’d have gotten in an expansion broken out into DLC pieces that cost more, combined).
All in all, it’s really bolstering my sales-resistance.