Ubisoft: "DLC is Pretty Much Accepted Now"

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Ubisoft: "DLC is Pretty Much Accepted Now"

dragons teeth release date

Ubisoft VP of digital publishing Chris Early says players don't resist DLC like they used to anymore.

"DLC" has come to be an almost "dirty word" in the gaming industry, because while there are quite a few developers who use it responsibly, with appropriately priced expansion packs, there are way too many "wolf skins" that can leave a sour taste in gamer's mouths. However, Ubisoft VP of digital publishing Chris Early does not think this is the case, and says that most games have come to accept DLC, and certainly don't resist it like they used to.

Early, talking to Games Industry, about Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag's "Time saver" DLC packs (which unlock resources and hidden locations in the game you can also earn through normal play), said that there the packs faced very little resistance from players. "There was no resistance," he said. "Maybe there were 12 guys somewhere who said something, but whatever. As a whole, there wasn't a problem."

In the past, gamers would complain that such "shortcut" DLC packs used to be available as free cheat codes, but Early says that those days are over as gamers have come to embrace their nickle-and-dime overlords.

"I think there are some models that are accepted now," Early said. "DLC is pretty much accepted. Season pass is pretty much accepted. Now it's interesting when you start to think of Season Pass as a Service Pass. For our Season Pass holders, I know we hold events for them specifically, so it's little bit more than just DLC content. So there's an evolution going on there."

So there you go. If you dislike the practice of developers shoveling DLC down your throat the moment a game goes live (or in some cases, even before that), you're in the minority (at least according to Ubisoft).

Source: Games Industry

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It all depends on how you go about it, Ubisoft. When DLC comes down to say, a brand new 2-4 hour campaign that you put a lot of time and effort into, people might not mind. When you put the equivalent of micro transactions, weapon skins, and heaven forbid content that is locked onto the disc, people still get upset. Don't automatically assume that everyone WANTS to pay 80+ dollars for a "complete" experience. Announcing a season pass before the game is released, knowing well it's content you could have waited to put onto the game itself, is always a grubby money grab.

Yeah I suppose if you leave a pile of shit in your sitting room long enough, your guests will eventually see it as a normal feature in your house. That doesn't change the fact that it's a pile of shit in your sitting room.

Also, the fire in their kitchen brought on by their lazy approach to female characters has provided a great distraction.

Well, for one thing, acceptance isn't the same as approval. I'm actually someone who really doesn't mind most DLC even if I very rarely actually buy it. Actually, that's something I'm curious about. I'd like to know just how worthwhile it is for companies to delve so deeply into the DLC market. I'm guessing it must pay off but based on the communities I'm privy to, I really don't know of anyone who actually makes a habit of buying most DLC.

Because we've just given up telling publishers we hate it. We screamed for years about it, you fucking just did it anyways, so that's that. I stopped buying your games.

I think its just the gamers that were willing to pay for this shit have stuck around and bought their nickle and diming DLC. Others have left to play different games and wait for the actual complete version of a game they like 1-2 years later when they see it all on steam with DLC for like 20-40 bucks. I really can't remember the last time I've bought a game at launch which is almost entirely because of DLC. I mean you buy triple AAA games at launch these days and you are just begging to be ripped off by these shady asshole publishers.

I mean I don't think its coincidence that rise of DLC happens at the exact same time as the explosion of consumers looking for Indies to play or Kickstarter games to fund and free to play because those are more honest ways to sell your game. Also with the general acceptance of video games in the wider culture at large and it really seems to me more likely that Publishers have sacrificed so many potential sale with burnt out consumers has been offset by the entry of new ones into the market when they could of had both.

Yeah, I just stopped buying Ubisoft games, I didn't accept their shitty DLC practices.

So then I'm to assume that when someone is knocked unconscious it's because they like being punched in the head?

I hope that Jim uses this to keep his Ubisoft Jimquisition train rolling.

remnant_phoenix:
I hope that Jim uses this to keep his Ubisoft Jimquisition train rolling.

Jim will never run out of material with the current state of triple AAA publishing.

Fuck you, Ubisoft. I don't have anything in particular to say other than "Fuck you, Ubisoft". So fuck you, Ubisoft.

Well Chris Early I think we'll be finding out just who those 12 people on the internet are.
Ubisoft's disregard for a small minority of overly complaining IGC members can only be applauded, after all look at all the dosh its made them.

Time saver DLC was something mentioned quite a bit there, and while its hated like the rest I actually think it can very well be a good thing. For example the older demographic tends to be wealthier in cash, but poorer in free time, time saver DLC helps them nicely.
I don't recall myself using it much as I'm not an old fogey...one instance was in a game called Cross Edge which I hated for several reasons, but decided to go back to two years later to platinum. Time saver DLC meant I absolutely crushed everything in the main story no problem and gave me a nice leg to stand on when it came to getting the post game stuff thereby saving me many hours.

I actually think DLC was more accepted when it first arrived compared to now. Therefore I find this statement rather amusing.

I've never had a problem with DLC, but I think that's because it means something different to me than what it's supposed to mean. To me, DLC is an expansion in the game's story. Dead Space 3: Awakening. Arkham City: Harley Quinn's Revenge. Mass Effect (pretty much all of them). Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon's Keep Stuff like that. That's DLC to me.

Paying for weapon skins, new multiplayer maps, player skins, and other stuff like that? That's not DLC to me. I'm actually not sure what I call that stuff. Dressings maybe? Anyway, the point is that I don't buy that stuff, so I don't worry about it.

When it comes to Ubisoft, it should be referred to as DLM.

Downloadable malcontent.

Depends on the DLC. I tend to love story DLC, like with what Obsidian did with Fallout New Vegas. They did the right amount of main story hinting for side stories. They planned ahead for the stories for those DLCs but it didn't feel like they cut out entire parts of the main game they couldn't finish to make a DLC.

I prefer outfit and weapons DLC's when they are free.

DLC's that cost a quarter of the price ($15) of the main game are suspect. $10 seems to be the sweet for good story DLC.

Companies that never drop the price of their DLC, even years after the game is released, and release a game of the year edition/ collection without all that DLC in it, can kiss my butt. *looks at EA/Bioware*

No Ubi... content that you clearly cut from from the game to nickel and dime isn't accepted.

Eh forget it. I'm just going to assume they're saying stupid things to stray away from the previous stupid thing they said about Ass Creed and fem characters awhile ago.

Oh, I mostly hate DLCs. Why? because it killed expansions.

Oh, you remember Expansions, don't you?

Lord of Destruction for Diablo 2, Dark Crusade for the Dawn of War series, The Conquerors Expansion for Age of Empires II. Paying for things that really made the game either feel fundamentally different, or gave more variety in how you played. New civilizations to learn and master as opposed to paying 5 dollars for three new guns and some different colors.

I have no problem for paying extra to expand my game play. I even love the idea.

But 3 dollar dlc for a few new guns that I might not even use as opposed to Expansions that have to alter my game playing style... there's no contest in what's better for the consumer.

Just as there's no contest in what's better for the designers. So we see why they love DLC.

And before you say it, yes, I get DLC is just another 'form' of Expansions. But back before they were downloadable, developers had to sit and think on how to change things and what to give to the consumer to actually make it worth purchasing the new DVD. Why should I pay 20 extra dollars? Oh. You're giving me all of that? Ok. Here's the cash.

Now, with DLC, you can make skin packs and palate swaps cost 5.99 each. And who cares because you don't have to purchase it because it doesn't really 'add or take away from the game', does it?

And that's the problem. Designers feel they can get away with making this nothing content that adds nothing or really takes nothing away from the game, and someone will buy it. It's like appealing to the lowest common demonator and saying "Why should we appeal to you discerning folks when we can still make money hand over fist by a few hours of coding to make Sakura look like a Japanese Female Drummer?"

And other than being outraged that it's devolved to this.. how can I fault them if it still works?

captcha: Rocket Science

No, my Obviously Sentient and Clairvoyant Creepy little friend, it definitely is not that at all.

dragongit:
Announcing a season pass before the game is released, knowing well it's content you could have waited to put onto the game itself, is always a grubby money grab.

I dont understand this. I hear it a lot and it baffles me. Season passes usually get you like 4-6 DLC pack over a year or so. I can maybe see people arguing that the first pack could have been included in the game. But the rest? You wanted it to just shelf the game for a year until all those packs were ready? And dont say yes, because its pretty common for gamers to say 'Pushed back another year? Well whatever, window passed, I dont care about this title anymore.'

To me a Season Pass says 'We intend to release DLC for the next 12 months.'

But I guess Im just a sucker or something?

Said sarcastically, because I've purchased like 1 season pass ever. I tend to be done with games by the time the later DLC's come out, so they're not the best option for me. I mean I picked up the BL2 pass, but only got like 1 DLC in before the unskippable cutscenes + needing to repeat all the content wore me down.

I can accept DLC paloozas, thing is though the publisher has no choice but to accept me waiting for the GOTY version in the Steam sale for 2 more than the 5 standard retail version... So yeah okay publishers you win a whole 2, GG I guess.

Of course DLC is pretty much accepted. Everyone who'se sick of the shit gaming has been pulling the last 3 years is gone. My old gaming crew has pretty much dissolved to other hobbies, and I'm mostly playing indies on steam. I'm sure Ubisoft has it's diehard fans who will buy every AC game regardless of DRM or DLC, but everyone who'se neutral about their games knows to avoid them by now.

As far as the speedup DLC's go... Cheat Engine.

On ubisoft's bed, there was one last small patch of whiteness that had not been covered in brown.

Guess who had chipotle tonight!

The Lunatic:
Yeah, I just stopped buying Ubisoft games, I didn't accept their shitty DLC practices.

And since sales have been down in the AC line, I think it's stupid to assume we just all took it.

That being said, I've been fine with time saver packs since the beginning of last gen. I don't care, I'm not going to use them, but whatever. There are bigger issues with DLC that I care about far more than whether someone is grinding X number of Y in game Z.

Bethesda DLC after Horse Armor for the Fallout games and Elder Scrolls I do not mind buying at all because they expand upon the game and add allot to it, even Horse Armor wasn't a bad deal as far as DLC because it wasn't $20, it was a very reasonable amount for what you got compared to some games these days charging more for even less.

Season pass, 5 maps packs, cheats, and $20 weapon skins are not quality DLC and shouldn't be acceptable and any publisher crony that says they should be can go fuck themselves with a railroad tie after banging a box full of nails halfway into it.

As long as devs understand that DLC stands for Downloadable Content and not Disc-Locked Content, then we're good.

I don't even care anymore if its outrageously priced, since I can just ignore it in that case. But if I buy the disc, I deserve ownership of everything that's on the disc.

if you are getting faceslapped every time you come hope from work, after 5 years you stop crying out in pain - not going to change it now is it. this is what happened with DLCs, gamers have accepted that its just another unstoppable thievery. Sadly, some of us still remmeber when things they call DLCs now used to be patches that were free. And yes, patches would add extra content, because back then developers actually cared about audience opinion.

As far as Ubisoft in particular, havent bought Ubisoft game since AC2, Always online DRM = i take my business elsewhere.

This is the motivation for a lot of shady practices in general, not just in the games industry.

The idea is to create new "facts on the ground" which are politically favorable to the force creating, pushing, and benefiting from the fact. DLC helps stabilize revenue over time for the game publisher and developer at the expense of artistic integrity - consider if the Mona Lisa was halfway done, copies were sold, and then more of the painting was doled out for additional fees. This makes it extremely difficult on the artist to produce a great work - if musicians had to create half a song and then do bits and pieces more over the next year or two there would be no way to have a coherent artistic vision. It's also extremely difficult to determine just what the identity of the game IS. Is it the game with all the DLC? What about if planned DLC is cancelled? In every other artform the work is settled on, produced, and that's it. With DLC games have a myriad of versions, all of which claim to be the "same" game.

DLC is part of a philosophy that games are a product, like peanut butter, not an artform. They are the only artform in history to do anything like this, and it's not treated seriously by many gamers.

How should game historians treat this? Should they have to catalogue every DLC for every game? Should they consider only the "final" version of the game, complete with all DLC, despite many players not playing this "true" version of the game?

What about game reviewers? The vast majority of reviews come out around the same time the first version of the game is released. The reviewer is only reviewing the first "finished" version of the game, minus ALL of the DLC. So as the industry moves towards more and more DLC for each game, the relevance of reviewing the first "finished" version of the game becomes less and less, just as the relevance of reviewing a half-finished Mona Lisa is lacking.

Is this nonsense, harm, and chaos really worth it - largely so that corporations can show a steady income stream to their investors?

I suppose if you are the type to put up with uplay you are the type to pay for DLC so I'm pretty sure Ubisoft's demographic fits everything they are saying so of course their own numbers would back things up. They live in their own little pocket universe oblivious to all the potential sales they throw away by continuing with their nonsense.

Strazdas:
if you are getting faceslapped every time you come hope from work, after 5 years you stop crying out in pain - not going to change it now is it. this is what happened with DLCs, gamers have accepted that its just another unstoppable thievery. Sadly, some of us still remmeber when things they call DLCs now used to be patches that were free. And yes, patches would add extra content, because back then developers actually cared about audience opinion.

As far as Ubisoft in particular, havent bought Ubisoft game since AC2, Always online DRM = i take my business elsewhere.

this always online has been changed years ago. you dont have to be online to play the game. to many people have complained. now you can play, lose your connection, and still keep on playing. i know it since i happened to me few times. you just get a message that it lost connection but you still can play.

@DLC.
the sad thing is that people do accept it now since its an unstoppable marketing from the companies. i still dont have a problem with DLCs as long i get something for it but if its new skins, etc, then i see it as a waste of time. we even complained about tomb raider that the costumes have to be bought when the same company made these skins all unlockable by achieving things in the game.

i got my self child of light during the summer sales and i also got my self few DLCs, since they were on special as well. 1 was an extra character and thats something that does pay off, wile the rest were some skills you can unlock in the game anyway.

I do wish theses people would keep their mouths shut because every time they open them I'm overcome by the desire to work them over with a two-by-four. Sure I can live with DLC, but not your Pay-to-Win "DLC."

Look out, EA, Ubisoft is coming for your worst publisher title.

I, for one, hope they take it after what they did to Butt Creed.

Here's my take on DLC:

For a long series of games now, I'd see the game released, then a ton of DLC, and eventually they'd release a complete version.

Examples:
~ Borderlands 2 Game of the Year edition
~ Civilization V Complete Edition
~ Batman: Arkham City, Game of the Year Edition
~ Skyrim Legendary Edition
~ Saints Row IV National Treasure Edition (Coming in July 2014!)

So now, when I see a new AAA title released, I expect it is the Incomplete edition

I'll wait.

238U

Maybe the gamers who give a damn about DLC are also the ones who aren't buying your games on principle anymore, Chris. Just food for thought.

Yeah a lot of gamers have stopped complaining. There's a term for this. It's called Stockholm syndrome.

Metalrocks:
this always online has been changed years ago. you dont have to be online to play the game. to many people have complained. now you can play, lose your connection, and still keep on playing. i know it since i happened to me few times. you just get a message that it lost connection but you still can play.

I bought AC2 day 1. I could not play because servers were down. My friend who pirated the game could play because it didnt need online. I boycotted Ubisoft. I do not forgive easily. Even altrough Ubisoft have changed things somewhat, they still run their malware called UPlay. and the way they act while doing this is alone not worth buying from them.

"thank you for choosing UPlay". makes it sound like "Thank you for choosing slavery". Not really a choice whne your shackled and being lashed at now is it. So i chose not to buy from them.

I planned to lift that siege if Watch_Dogs were good, but since it does not seem that way, ill wait for something else.
Its not like they have much to offer to begin with. AC1 i liked, AC2 - not that much. Far cry 2 was so terrible it turned me off the franchise (though i hear 3 is very different so perhaps....). Never cared about Prince of Persia. Settlers franchise was good when it was settlers 2, Ubisoft ruined it long ago already.

Anno 2070 is something i would like to see but not worth it alone.

Im not saying im never going to buy anything from them. I may someday, maybe if they come through with what they said about DRM lately its enough. as it is though, i have plenty of other games to play besode buying games from company i dislike.

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