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Why I Can’t Bring Myself to Love DLC

October 11, 2012 Leave a comment

Several weeks ago, a good friend got me a gift: Company of Heroes, a great World War II real-time strategy game. The copy was to be downloaded through Steam, and so for the first time since it was released nine years ago, I downloaded and installed the digital distribution software. This was not the first time I’ve used such a software, but it certainly was a close candidate, given my only other experience with downloading major games online in a such a way was for Mass Effect 3 via Electronic Art’s Origin software. Almost a decade too late, I was finally entrenched into the community of online gamers.

I admit I’m a bit of a old-school person when it comes to traditional gaming: I enjoy singleplayer campaigns more than multiplayer matches, and prefer to play someone in the same room (or at least someone I know) as opposed to mass matches on the internet. For years, I have bought retail versions of games instead of digital versions; Company of Heroes and Mass Effect 3 have been the only exception (although Company of Heroes – and later a few other indie games – were gifted to me as opposed to my actual purchases). I was aware of downloadable content – or DLC – but had largely stuck with the concept of retail expansion packs for a long time.

It didn’t hinder my acceptance of DLC or downloadable games by any means. In fact, I’m rather impressed at this convenient business model that facilitates ease of access, ease of licensing, and ease of implementing sales. Digital distribution of games is a stroke of marketing and distribution genius that I can personally support and get behind. On the other hand, my reception of DLC has been much more lukewarm, for quite a few reasons. Read more…

Categories: Gaming