EA Isn't Trying to Blackmail You

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
EA Isn't Trying to Blackmail You

EA's "project ten dollar" incentives are an offer you can choose to refuse.

Read Full Article
 

Valiance

New member
Jan 14, 2009
3,823
0
0
You know, I don't think it's a bad idea - companies lose enough money with used games as is, and I hardly purchase used at all unless the company is gone, the game is old, and I can't get it any other way. You know, Dreamcast and Gamecube games and such.

I like having extra stuff to put into a game, whether it be maps, mods, skins, new areas, whatever, and considering all the content is optional, I don't see what's so bad about it.

Someone can still purchase used and just not use this content and it's not like they're forced to not buy used, but from a company's standpoint, what you said makes sense: People should pay more money for more content. Why should someone who paid 30 dollars get the same game someone paid 50 dollars for?
 

DarkSaber

New member
Dec 22, 2007
476
0
0
You might have more of a point if EA weren't going to hack out substantial parts of the game to "give away" as day one DLC, or sell later. Like they already do.
 

DoctorObviously

New member
May 22, 2009
1,083
0
0
Can somebody explain to me what this infamous 'ten dollar project' is in simply words? I can't seem to understand what it is or why people don't like it.
 

squid5580

New member
Feb 20, 2008
5,106
0
0
DarkSaber said:
You might have more of a point if EA weren't going to hack out substantial parts of the game to "give away" as day one DLC, or sell later. Like they already do.
Where exactly was this substantial parts that got hacked away?
 

uppitycracker

New member
Oct 9, 2008
864
0
0
This is the first time I've so dramatically disagreed with one of your articles.

First off, to target the people complaining about this and calling them whiny gamers is pretty immature and taking a very one sided view on this whole issue.


Next, it's easy to dismiss most of the extra content, but lets take a look at the most recent bit that's grabbed everyones attention. Multiplayer maps. While that might sound like a small thing to most, it can easy fuck up the flow, depending on how the lobby system works. ESPECIALLY for consoles. The maps switch to one of the exclusive ones, and BAM, you drop. Thus destroying the flow of the gaming experience. Multiplayer being one of the biggest draws for certain game types, such as the FPS genre, this is a huge dent. Additionally, charging 15 dollars for two maps? How can you justify that, when those maps are already completed?


Sure, it's easy to say that publishers like EA deserve every dime they get, and you are absolutely right. However, these games net the companies multiple millions of dollars incredibly quickly, and to deny the gamer that maybe cannot afford to buy everything new part of the experience, is not only selling the customer short, but the developers themselves.


The last subject that should be touched on is the used games business. Given the recent problems with our own economy, don't you think it's wise to allow businesses like this to thrive? Especially when it gets the concept of gaming that much more mainstream and accepted?

I see your point, but it's a very one sided view, as I said earlier. I'm honestly quite disappointed in this article as a whole, it's a pretty lousy representation of the value you hold towards us as fellow gamers.
 

Delock

New member
Mar 4, 2009
1,085
0
0
DarkSaber said:
You might have more of a point if EA weren't going to hack out substantial parts of the game to "give away" as day one DLC, or sell later. Like they already do.
Really now? So Zaeed, a mercenary with no real dialogue trees on the Normandy is something substantial. He feels a lot more like something that was just barely finished by launch day. His mission is about 10 minutes total while the whole game is 30 hours long. The normandy crash site is about 5 minutes long. Project ten dollar happens to be one of their better options. It's like buy the collector's edition of a game that contains extra content. It's a reward for spending more (something dlcs are really all about).

It's not rewarding newcomers and alienating those who have believed in the company and bought all the dlc released like several other companies (Halo ODST to the halo fans, or most greatest hits editions). It's not Capcom's on-the-disc dlc that you have to pay to unlock. It's simply that if you decide to spend money on the new game, which is good for the publisher in terms of money (stores buy more new games to replace fast selling stock) and in sales records, you are rewarded.

Or another great examle of bad dlc is the epilouge of the newest Prince of Persia game that is effectively showing what happens after the end of the game and seems a bit like something that should have been included.
 

John Funk

U.N. Owen Was Him?
Dec 20, 2005
20,364
0
0
DarkSaber said:
You might have more of a point if EA weren't going to hack out substantial parts of the game to "give away" as day one DLC, or sell later. Like they already do.
If you'll pardon my Francais:

Bull. Shit.

This is just the same sort of conspiracy-theorist, tinfoil-hat, the-sky-is-falling ludicrousness that we see everywhere from people who have literally no idea how games are made, have no concept of deadlines or content limits or the fact that there are established procedures to take something from the "Hey, wouldn't this be cool" concept idea to "Now it's finished and on the disc!"

Or who don't understand that sometimes, developers can't do everything they want in order to make deadlines and need to take things out / scrap ideas, things that DLC lets them put back in later.
 

Lost In The Void

When in doubt, curl up and cry
Aug 27, 2008
10,128
0
0
Thanm you so much. I'm getting so sick of the whining that goes on over dlc. Really these kind of articles should highlight why companies are doing this.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
uppitycracker said:
This is the first time I've so dramatically disagreed with one of your articles.

First off, to target the people complaining about this and calling them whiny gamers is pretty immature and taking a very one sided view on this whole issue.


Next, it's easy to dismiss most of the extra content, but lets take a look at the most recent bit that's grabbed everyones attention. Multiplayer maps. While that might sound like a small thing to most, it can easy fuck up the flow, depending on how the lobby system works. ESPECIALLY for consoles. The maps switch to one of the exclusive ones, and BAM, you drop. Thus destroying the flow of the gaming experience. Multiplayer being one of the biggest draws for certain game types, such as the FPS genre, this is a huge dent. Additionally, charging 15 dollars for two maps? How can you justify that, when those maps are already completed?


Sure, it's easy to say that publishers like EA deserve every dime they get, and you are absolutely right. However, these games net the companies multiple millions of dollars incredibly quickly, and to deny the gamer that maybe cannot afford to buy everything new part of the experience, is not only selling the customer short, but the developers themselves.


The last subject that should be touched on is the used games business. Given the recent problems with our own economy, don't you think it's wise to allow businesses like this to thrive? Especially when it gets the concept of gaming that much more mainstream and accepted?

I see your point, but it's a very one sided view, as I said earlier. I'm honestly quite disappointed in this article as a whole, it's a pretty lousy representation of the value you hold towards us as fellow gamers.
What multiplayer maps were given away free with new copies of the game? I apologize, but I just don't know what you're referring to. I happen to agree with you, that multiplayer maps would be something that would diminish the overall experience, but I'm just unaware of any that fall under what I'm specifically talking about.

Also, I am all for used games, because they're the only way that most folks can afford to play. But publishers don't profit from the sales of used games. If they did, I'd feel completely differently about this situation.
 

Icehearted

New member
Jul 14, 2009
2,081
0
0
I'm all for incentives, but in all honesty, I struggle to justify having preordered Mass Effect 2 CE, when all I really have to show for it is some armor I can't use without destroying the immersion, a DVD I may or May not watch, and a comic "booklet". DLC is also one of those ideas I really with had never taken off. People cut things from games all to often to turn a larger profit on DLC, and this abuse and now leveraging only proves that greed is more important in gaming than delivering a good or even worthy product.

I defy anyone to tell me that $5 horse armor or five extra costume packs at $4 a pop for Street Fighter isn't exploitative.

I'm also finding uppitycracker's comments hard to disagree with.

Edit:
John Funk said:
DarkSaber said:
You might have more of a point if EA weren't going to hack out substantial parts of the game to "give away" as day one DLC, or sell later. Like they already do.
If you'll pardon my Francais:

Bull. Shit.

This is just the same sort of conspiracy-theorist, tinfoil-hat, the-sky-is-falling ludicrousness that we see everywhere from people who have literally no idea how games are made, have no concept of deadlines or content limits or the fact that there are established procedures to take something from the "Hey, wouldn't this be cool" concept idea to "Now it's finished and on the disc!"

Or who don't understand that sometimes, developers can't do everything they want in order to make deadlines and need to take things out / scrap ideas, things that DLC lets them put back in later.
Didn't they actually admit to doing that with Assassin's Creed 2? I could be getting my wires crossed here on the title, but I feel fairly certain that something came out pretty recently with DLC that was made out of intentionally removed content.
 

uppitycracker

New member
Oct 9, 2008
864
0
0
Susan Arendt said:
uppitycracker said:
This is the first time I've so dramatically disagreed with one of your articles.

First off, to target the people complaining about this and calling them whiny gamers is pretty immature and taking a very one sided view on this whole issue.


Next, it's easy to dismiss most of the extra content, but lets take a look at the most recent bit that's grabbed everyones attention. Multiplayer maps. While that might sound like a small thing to most, it can easy fuck up the flow, depending on how the lobby system works. ESPECIALLY for consoles. The maps switch to one of the exclusive ones, and BAM, you drop. Thus destroying the flow of the gaming experience. Multiplayer being one of the biggest draws for certain game types, such as the FPS genre, this is a huge dent. Additionally, charging 15 dollars for two maps? How can you justify that, when those maps are already completed?


Sure, it's easy to say that publishers like EA deserve every dime they get, and you are absolutely right. However, these games net the companies multiple millions of dollars incredibly quickly, and to deny the gamer that maybe cannot afford to buy everything new part of the experience, is not only selling the customer short, but the developers themselves.


The last subject that should be touched on is the used games business. Given the recent problems with our own economy, don't you think it's wise to allow businesses like this to thrive? Especially when it gets the concept of gaming that much more mainstream and accepted?

I see your point, but it's a very one sided view, as I said earlier. I'm honestly quite disappointed in this article as a whole, it's a pretty lousy representation of the value you hold towards us as fellow gamers.
What multiplayer maps were given away free with new copies of the game? I apologize, but I just don't know what you're referring to.

Also, I am all for used games, because they're the only way that most folks can afford to play. But publishers don't profit from the sales of used games. If they did, I'd feel completely differently about this situation.
http://kotaku.com/5479318/bad-company-2s-pre+owned-sales+stifling-dlc-revealed

Bad Company 2. It's only 2 maps, one that doesn't even become available until March, but they're both included on the disc, and honestly the number of maps shouldn't matter at all.

And when it comes to used game sales, the majority of the used games sales are usually long after the game has left the spotlight. Having spent a number of years in the used game business, I can tell you that the people who tend to spend the cash on used games would never have originally spent the 60 dollars on the game in the first place. For companies that make so much money, especially on the blockbuster titles that we're seeing the Project 10 Dollar thing implemented with, it just doesn't make sense to remove any aspect of the experience from their game. This is primarily the work of the publishers, of course, and not so much the developers, which makes it especially underhanded in my eyes.
 

John Funk

U.N. Owen Was Him?
Dec 20, 2005
20,364
0
0
Icehearted said:
I'm all for incentives, but in all honesty, I struggle to justify having preordered Mass Effect 2 CE, when all I really have to show for it is some armor I can't use without destroying the immersion, a DVD I may or May not watch, and a comic "booklet". DLC is also one of those ideas I really with had never taken off. People cut things from games all to often to turn a larger profit on DLC, and this abuse and now leveraging only proves that greed is more important in gaming than delivering a good or even worthy product.

I defy anyone to tell me that $5 horse armor or five extra costume packs at $4 a pop for Street Fighter isn't exploitative.

I'm also finding uppitycracker's comments hard to disagree with.

Edit:
John Funk said:
DarkSaber said:
You might have more of a point if EA weren't going to hack out substantial parts of the game to "give away" as day one DLC, or sell later. Like they already do.
If you'll pardon my Francais:

Bull. Shit.

This is just the same sort of conspiracy-theorist, tinfoil-hat, the-sky-is-falling ludicrousness that we see everywhere from people who have literally no idea how games are made, have no concept of deadlines or content limits or the fact that there are established procedures to take something from the "Hey, wouldn't this be cool" concept idea to "Now it's finished and on the disc!"

Or who don't understand that sometimes, developers can't do everything they want in order to make deadlines and need to take things out / scrap ideas, things that DLC lets them put back in later.
Didn't they actually admit to doing that with Assassin's Creed 2? I could be getting my wires crossed here on the title, but I feel fairly certain that something came out pretty recently with DLC that was made out of intentionally removed content.
No, the DLC was removed from the game because it wouldn't be ready in time for release deadlines.

And I will tell you straight-up to your face that the Horse Armor and Costume Packs are not exploitative. Do you know why? Because they are the very image of something that is completely optional. It is 100% cosmetic. You do not need it in any way to experience maximum enjoyment of the game. You get it ONLY if you want it.

You'd have more of an argument for actual mission content, because at least then you could argue that people who don't have the resources/funds/ability to get DLC are missing out on content instead of some super shiny pixels.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
uppitycracker said:
http://kotaku.com/5479318/bad-company-2s-pre+owned-sales+stifling-dlc-revealed

Bad Company 2. It's only 2 maps, one that doesn't even become available until March, but they're both included on the disc, and honestly the number of maps shouldn't matter at all.

And when it comes to used game sales, the majority of the used games sales are usually long after the game has left the spotlight. Having spent a number of years in the used game business, I can tell you that the people who tend to spend the cash on used games would never have originally spent the 60 dollars on the game in the first place. For companies that make so much money, especially on the blockbuster titles that we're seeing the Project 10 Dollar thing implemented with, it just doesn't make sense to remove any aspect of the experience from their game. This is primarily the work of the publishers, of course, and not so much the developers, which makes it especially underhanded in my eyes.
Thanks for the info on the maps. I wouldn't consider that content to be on par with, say, Zaeed, and more in line with something like Return to Ostagar. So we're actually in agreement on that point. What I can hope is that, as EA and other publishers experiment with these kinds of incentives, that they figure out an appropriate level of fairness.

As for used games, I see what you're saying -- what if the DLC that was bundled free with new copies became free to everyone after the game had been out for an extended period of time? (A year, perhaps.) After a certain point, even finding a new copy of a game can prove difficult, as stores are drowning in used copies.
 

edthehyena

New member
Oct 26, 2009
88
0
0
Icehearted said:
I'm all for incentives, but in all honesty, I struggle to justify having preordered Mass Effect 2 CE, when all I really have to show for it is some armor I can't use without destroying the immersion, a DVD I may or May not watch, and a comic "booklet". DLC is also one of those ideas I really with had never taken off. People cut things from games all to often to turn a larger profit on DLC, and this abuse and now leveraging only proves that greed is more important in gaming than delivering a good or even worthy product.

I defy anyone to tell me that $5 horse armor or five extra costume packs at $4 a pop for Street Fighter isn't exploitative.

I'm also finding uppitycracker's comments hard to disagree with.
First off, if you'd read what others have said, it is simply not true that DLC is "cut out" of a game to make a bigger profit.

Second, nobody is making you buy the collector's edition, horse armor, or costume packs. You know what you're getting for your money, and if it's not worth it to you, then just don't spend the money. As long as you have the choice to spend or not spend (and you aren't penalized for not spending), it's your own damn fault.
 

The Random One

New member
May 29, 2008
3,310
0
0
My issue with this thing is twofold. See, I'm in Brazil. There is no Live in Brazil, other than if you do some shanenigans to get an international account I don't really care about doing. So I can get no downloadeable content. Not a single one.

Since I don't expect downloadable content, I've grown used to it. I simply accept I can't play that part of the game and forget about it. I don't care if it's free or not, since regardless of that it's just as unattainable for me.

That said, if I were to buy one of those games new, there would be some content I would be entitled to and could not access. Even if I don't care about it particularly, it's not very fair, is it?

I don't plan on buying any of those games. I rent games, it's the only way I can keep with the gaming industry without going broke, especially since they are so expensive in here due to massive import taxes. The problem is if what your pal Shamus says turns out to be true and companies decide to turn the discs into glorified demo versions you can then pay for the whole thing if you like. I won't even touch a disc that does that.

Thibaut said:
Can somebody explain to me what this infamous 'ten dollar project' is in simply words? I can't seem to understand what it is or why people don't like it.
Project Ten Dollar is EA's approach to day one DLC. They have content that can be downloaded for free via some sort of code that comes with the gaming package. Without the code, that content is avaliable for up to ten dollars. People don't like it because they think anything that's ready when the game is released should be on the disc.
 

Jhereg42

New member
Apr 11, 2008
329
0
0
Icehearted said:
I defy anyone to tell me that $5 horse armor or five extra costume packs at $4 a pop for Street Fighter isn't exploitative.

I'm also finding uppitycracker's comments hard to disagree with.
First: The Horse Armor was a mistake. Bethesda has said as much. Holding onto an issue that is YEARS old and was one of the first baby steps taken into the realm of DLC is a bit counter productive at this point. You can see that they learned from the experience when you compare it to the quality of the later Oblivion (KotN and SI in particular) and Fallout 3 DLC.

Second: The Streetfighter outfits are window dressing. You can say it's exploitative, but they in no way make some other dude better at the game than you or really even add to it. It's something that is presented as optional, is optional, and you may optionally pay for it. No exploitation at all. You can argue that they should cost less, but your voice will be heard in that case by not buying them until they are on sale or reduced.

Finally: Nothing in these "Project Ten Dollar" DLC packs in any way detracts from the value of the game. For all the crap EA is getting over this, at least they are not going the way of Ubisoft. They are punishing gamers to drive sales, where as EA is rewarding them. Why is this a crime?
 

uppitycracker

New member
Oct 9, 2008
864
0
0
Susan Arendt said:
Thanks for the info on the maps. I wouldn't consider that content to be on par with, say, Zaeed, and more in line with something like Return to Ostagar. So we're actually in agreement on that point. What I can hope is that, as EA and other publishers experiment with these kinds of incentives, that they figure out an appropriate level of fairness.

As for used games, I see what you're saying -- what if the DLC that was bundled free with new copies became free to everyone after the game had been out for an extended period of time? (A year, perhaps.) After a certain point, even finding a new copy of a game can prove difficult, as stores are drowning in used copies.
Now see, this is something I could totally get behind, although a year is really a bit longer than I would think. 6 months should be perfect, really, because by then whatever game it is has been severely overshadowed by the next big release, and the retail price has dropped enough.

The only reason why I view the BC2 issue as a much bigger one is because of the flow of the online experience. I remember when playing Call of Duty 4, before they implemented the different lobbies after the map pack was released, getting dropped because of not having the maps. I wasn't about to dish out the cash for them, because I played on PC, and was just awaiting NVidia to sponsor the maps (see, they got their money either way). If I had to encounter this very same issue within the first month of the game coming out, I know I'd be severely pissed, and second guess my purchases in the future.

It really is a hard issue to tackle, especially when you factor in the smaller developers and publishers. It's going to be interesting to see how it plays out, and quite unfortunate for some people as there will be those that suffer.
 

Slycne

Tank Ninja
Feb 19, 2006
3,422
0
0
uppitycracker said:
And when it comes to used game sales, the majority of the used games sales are usually long after the game has left the spotlight. Having spent a number of years in the used game business, I can tell you that the people who tend to spend the cash on used games would never have originally spent the 60 dollars on the game in the first place.
I worked in the used games industry for a few years as well, but I wouldn't make that conclusion. From what I observed it was less that people didn't want to pay more, but that they were willing to accept buying a used copy if it meant a lower price point. Their intent was to buy the game regardless.

Icehearted said:
I defy anyone to tell me that $5 horse armor or five extra costume packs at $4 a pop for Street Fighter isn't exploitative.
Sure I'll bite. It's not exploitative. Is the price point too high, definitely, but a smart consumer shouldn't pay out for it. Not informing someone beforehand that they have to pay extra money to unlock multiplayer would be exploitative.