Microtransactions, DLC, and the horrors of Modern Gaming

Dear Reader, this topic tackles the topic of Gaming’s state in our current generation. From triple A title games, to the lesser games. This has came upon my mind after watching a popular youtuber’s video tackling this subject. Which you can watch below.

Boogie2988 here dissects the topic pretty well, and there is nothing really to argue against these ideas. I can agree with much of what Boogie has spoke about. And I feel there is more to bring forth about this. And how Modern gaming has become so riddled with greed and spite from developers to consumers, and vice versa.

Downloadable content, Microtransactions, Day 1 DLC, store location DLC, Season passes, pre-order bonuses. Why have games become so targetted for profit to the point it becomes detrimental to the game’s enjoyment and structure? Or better yet, why is our producers cutting big parts from the game just to turn it back around at us with a price tag?

We’ve seen plenty of games come along where there are immense amounts of DLC produced for them. From Dying Light’s cut of “Playing as a zombie” set behind a price tag before it was eventually opened to all players. A feature that should’ve have been available at the beginning of the game. To Evolve’s extreme amount of DLC content. That cut access to a playable creature, to guns and such. We have seen so many games come out with a price tag lock to hold us from playing a complete game.

Downloadable content has become such a huge part in modern gaming. To milk every cent out of our pockets. As the producers of these games want to make every dollar that they can upon any game. Even if the game flops financially, they can rely on DLC to save their hides from a critical failure. Games like Dead Island still made a profit on it’s DLC content, despite the game failing in ratings and sales.

I would want to propose a scenario. To anyone here who has played the big title: “The Elder Scrolls V, Skyrim”, imagine if many of the quests, or big features of Skyrim were locked behind a price. You couldn’t finish the “Unrelenting Force” shout without forking over three dollars or more. You were not allowed to recruit Derkeethus as a follower without Day One purchase. Or you couldn’t purchase/make a healing potion without tossing 50 cents.

Greed has taken gaming by the hair and been holding it for quite a bit. Prices of games are far more expensive in terms of completion. A game now days tends to feel incomplete without the installment of DLC or DLC-exclusive content. Producers are holding big parts of games behind these price tags and it only adds more discontentment to us consumers.

Downloadable content should add MORE to the game. To give a breath of fresh air and not to detract from the game. To keep the relevance of the game for all who wish to continue playing it. When I download some big DLC piece for a game, I want to have more to play to my game. Rather than feel forced to pay more just to get a complete game in my hands.

Skyrim’s DLC is a good example of  good downloadable content. Hearthfire, Dawnguard, and Dragonborn are all excellent DLC pieces that add more to the game’s environment and edge. You could download this game, and just get more to your experience. It added more to the game’s lore, didn’t take anything from the experience, and gave Skyrim’s reception even higher.

Downloadable content needs to give more to the player. And Producers are just not eager to do that. We see Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed flop with an ingame microtransaction system that LOCKED character progression in skills, moves, and abilities. This should NEVER be within a game. As Boogie states above, I shouldn’t fork money over to fill my car with gas. In game mechanics and character progress shouldn’t be halted by price tags. I wouldn’t love Skyrim at all if progressing past lv. 2 abilities in mage spells cost 5 bucks or more.

I believe producers need to learn what DLC was meant to be in the first installment. If your game feels incomplete, do not hide our missing pieces behind price tags or time locked prices. The consumer feels untrustworthy to the producer, and could lead to a possible decline in gaming sales because of these greedy motives that leave games half baked and unsatisfying.

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