Launch day DLC has a bad name thanks to a couple of very naughty publishers who in the past have cut content from a game to create DLC. Those publishers have been outed by the press and received the lambasting they deserved, yet people still sneer and moan that launch day DLC should be included as part of the full game.
It should not and to explain why I have compiled this handy guide featuring two scenarios with my favourite made-up publisher / developer, Nerdsoft.
- Nerdsoft have a budget of 10 million to create groundbreaking title Supercheese Racer. They allocate $9 million to the game and then $1 million for DLC creation and estimate they will sell 5 million games.
- Two years later and Supercheese Racer is completed and thanks to excellent time management and the skills of the developers the DLC is also completed and they can take a well deserved holiday.
- Internet Ragemonster finds out about the DLC and sets up a campaign to have it included as part of the game. Nerdsoft bow to pressure.
- Supercheese Racer is released, Nerdsoft no longer have the DLC as a revenue stream, sell the predicted 5 million copies but are $1 million out of pocket, the cost of the DLC development.
- Nerdsoft close, developers lose faith in console games, move to iOS games.
- Internet Ragemonster rages that no one makes console games anymore.
- Nerdsoft have a budget of 10 million to create groundbreaking title Supercheese Racer. They allocate $9 million to the game and then $1 million for DLC creation.
- Two years later and Supercheese Racer is completed and thanks to excellent time management and the skills of the developers the DLC is completed as well and they can take a well deserved holiday.
- Supercheese Racer launches with day one DLC. It is not part of the game; it had its own budget, its own development cycle and is a completely separate product to the launch game.
- Supercheese Racer sells 5 million copies and lots of DLC, Nerdsoft are able to pay their staff and invest in future products.
- Nerdsoft take their well deserved holiday, come back refreshed and make Supercheese Racer: Black Ops Future Soldier which is proclaimed to the best game ever.
- Everyone lives happily ever after.
If you still have trouble grasping the concept then try this: next time you are in your supermarket, place one large bottle of champagne and one smaller bottle of the same brand champers in your basket. They would be roughly the equivalent to a £40 game and £15 worth of DLC.
When you get to the checkout explain that you are only paying for the larger bottle as the smaller bottle was on the shelf at the same time therefore should be included in the price.