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Vivian Matthews 2017-07-04
img

Video games have changed immeasurably since the days of tape loading and cover-mounted floppy discs.

Yet, inflation aside, the price we pay at the till remains the same now as it was 25 years ago.

We asked the industry to explain five of the most controversial aspects of modern games buying – and, crucially, why they happen.

Activision Blizzard made over $3.6bn from optional DLC included in titles such as Call of Duty and Overwatch.

“You can see how the DLC enables the developers to keep doing the thing they want to do.” Speaking off the record, one executive at a leading global games publisher pointed out a logical maxim: only the popular payment systems survive.

A season pass is an additional purchase on top of a game’s upfront price that grants access to future content that will be added to a game, be that new multiplayer maps or story levels.

collect
0
Donald Ellison 2017-06-14
img

While a lot of the focus on Nintendo’s E3 may center around Metroid and Mario, Breath of the Wild was also on display during the show.

In a trailer run yesterday during the company’s E3 livestream, Nintendo gave us our first looks at the DLC coming along with the Breath of the Wild season pass.

We’ve heard a lot of this information before, but there are some new details that will definitely please Breath of the Wild fans.

This seems to be the DLC pack that most Breath of the Wild veterans will be interested in, as it includes Master mode, a new difficulty that significantly ups the challenge of Breath of the Wild.

Nintendo says that every enemy in the game will go up by one rank, so you’ll have a tougher time of taking them down right from the start.

We’ll even see high-ranking enemies that aren’t in the normal version of Breath of the Wild, so expect quite a challenge from those as well.

collect
0
Adrian Bray 2017-03-08
img

Activision plans to add the Call of Duty 4 Variety Map Pack to Modern Warfare Remastered next week.

Carrying the very same name as the downloadable content released nine years ago, the variety map pack will add four new battlegrounds previously found in the iconic shooter.

These include Broadcast, Chinatown, Creek and Killhouse.

The $15 expansion will also feature 10 rare supply drops normally obtained through in-game currency.

A UK price point is yet to be confirmed.

You can check out full descriptions of all the new additions on the Activision Blog.

collect
0
Timothy Corn 2017-10-10
img

Ahead of the Assassin’s Creed: Origins launch later this month, Ubisoft has unveiled the downloadable content that will be available for free and for folks who purchase a season pass.

Origins will be out on October 27 for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4, as well as on Xbox One X on November 7.

The season pass is available for $40, and it’s also packaged as a part of Assassin’s Creed: Origins Gold Edition, which is available for $110.

Some exclusive DLC for season pass owners will be available when the game launches, such as a weapon, the Calamity Blade, and 500 Helix Credits, which are the in-game currency.

In November, players will get access to The Roman Centurion and Horus Packs, which unlock new costumes, weapons, shields, and mounts.

Farther down the line, The Hidden Ones and The Curse of the Pharaohs expansion packs will become available as part of the season pass in January and March 2018 respectively.

collect
0
Robert Carter 2016-08-25
img

Ubisoft says that lingering issues are necessitating a delay in the launch of The Division DLCs, with Survival now being slated to release separately from Update 1.4.

The update will be released this upcoming October, dealing with bugs and more, while Survival s release has been pushed back to some time later this year and, as a result, the Last Stand release has been pushed back to some time in early 2017.

Specific dates haven't been provided at this time.

The Division has been out for half a year, and unfortunately it is suffering from what Ubisoft says are lingering issues it needs to deal with.

It is going to use the planned update 1.4 to deal with those issues, improving the core gameplay to get the game where it needs to be.

The update will, says Ubisoft, focus on the following:

collect
0
Mark Moore 2016-11-23
img

Ubisoft has said it wants to soften its stance on requiring gamers to pay for premium and additional content for its games, particularly in case where large changes are made to key games to keep them fresh over the long term.

Anne Blondel-Jouin, the company's VP of live operations, told GamesIndustry.biz that it would like to think it can keep some of its big brand multiplayer games online for between five and ten years now, and to do this requires a rethink of how in-game transactions and paid upgrades are handled.

Blondel-Jouin said: "The key is if it's not adding something on-top of the actual experience of the game, then it is no good.

Because you'll be asking for more money for the wrong reasons.

Also, if the content is compulsory for the gamers, it's no good as well."

"No more DLC that you have to buy if you want to have the full experience," she added, which sounds like quite a popular movement to free the DLC and bring about an end to various overpriced bonus bundles is about to get underway, via the medium of a promissory box sticker.

collect
0
Toby Taft 2016-11-23
img

Titanfall 2 s first piece of free downloadable content will launch next week in the form of Angel City s Most Wanted,

Those who pre-ordered the game will gain access to the content via a free update on November 30, while everyone else has to wait until December 3.

The highlight of this content drop is easily Angel City, a complete remake of one of the original Titanfall s fan favourite maps.

In addition to this free map, the update will give you a few new goodies to kit out your Titan with:

Ion: Refraction Lens - Splitter Rifle splits five ways

Scorch: Scorched Earth - Flame Core ignites the ground, leaving thermite in its wake

collect
0
Pedro Cote 2017-09-27

And then there's 2012's Assassin's Creed Unity, which portrays him as a tyrant who describes the world as "nothing but a carcass on which mankind feeds like worms," before promising to embark on a "genocidal crusade."

Unity, which led one Jean-Luc Mélenchon to describe it as a "smearing [of] the great revolution," caused so much upset that publisher Ubisoft was forced to tell French newspaper Le Monde that the game was in fact "not a history lesson" (and that's to say nothing of the door knobs).

Audio narration, pictures, drawings, and 3D objects bring the tours to life alongside the existing open-world recreation of ancient Egypt, which tells a tale of Templars and Assassins from the building of the pyramids through to the reign of Cleopatra.

While the technicalities are yet to be finalised, there are some remaining video game mechanics designed to funnel players through tours.

Some remain locked until others are completed, while your choice of character (unlike in the campaign, you aren't limited to playing as protagonist Bayek) affects the types of tours accessible.

Basing an entire educational mode on what is only a skin-deep reading of history is an interesting move, although Geusdon says that Historians and Egyptologists were brought on board during the development process to add accuracy.

collect
0
Ruth Johnson 2017-11-08
img

Games publishing giant Ubisoft has announced a major financial milestone, and one which will not be welcomed by those against the practice of day-one downloadable content and pay-to-win microtransactions: The company earned more from 'player recurring investment' than direct digital sales in the first half of its 2018 financial year.

Announced as part of the company's 1H 2018 financial report, the figures paint a picture of sudden and sharp growth: Digital revenue rose 69.1 percent for the half, to €342.6 million, which includes €174.5 million in what the company calls 'player recurring investment' or PRI - income received after the original sale of the game through in-game purchases, downloadable content, season passes, subscriptions, and advertising.

That 83 percent growth in PRI year-on-year has rocketed it above direct digital distribution income, which grew only 57 percent to €168 million - meaning that, for the first time in the company's history, it is making more money from in-game advertising and add-on content than from the digital sales of games themselves.

'In addition to [our] new releases, players are engaging with a large amount of additional high-quality content which provides them with longer-term entertainment,' said co-founder and chief executive Yves Guillemot of his company's performance.

'This includes Blood Orchid, the recent major update to Rainbow Six Siege, and Ghost War, the highly-acclaimed PvP mode for Ghost Recon Wildlands.

And it doesn't stop there: in the coming weeks we will notably release Resistance, a massive free update to The Division, and South Park: Phone Destroyer, a free-to-play mobile game.

collect
0
Eric Spilde 2017-07-19
img

The cleverly named update 6.66 ‘Ultimate’ update for Bethesda’s DOOM video game has arrived, and with it comes an unlocking of all the DLCs.

The game, which is now more than a year old, pits players against the forces of hell in what has largely been a well-received version of the classic game.

According to Bethesda, new people and early players are still enjoying this title, and now everyone is getting a chance to try the game via free weekends.

As great as it is, DOOM is now a bit dated and so it’s no surprise Bethesda is moving to renew interest.

To make the game more appealing, the company is ditching the season pass arrangement and unlocking all of the DLC content.

That means everyone gets access to the trio of multiplayer packs, of which there are the nine top maps, more playable demons and guns, additional armor and equipment, and other stuff.

collect
0
Garland Marsella 2017-09-02
img

Not only is Forthog a powerful ally in the game, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Mike Forger's family

The newest downloadable content package announced for Middle-earth: Shadows of War features a tribute to an executive producer at Monolith who died from brain cancer during the game’s development.

The Forthog Orc Slayer DLC is based on Mike “Forthog” Forger, who passed away in 2016.

The content package will be available for $5, and $3.50 from each purchase in the U.S. will be donated to Forgey’s family.

Some of the developers paid tribute to Forgey and discussed the new character in a video stream.

“We lost Mike to cancer during the development of Shadow of War, and we want to remember and honor him with a little bit of immortality in Mordor,” said WB Games in a statement.

collect
0
Phillip Willis 2016-11-22
img

Premium DLC has long been the bane of gamers, especially if it s the type that s borderline necessary in order to experience the core game the way it was meant to be played.

Fortunately for gamers, developer Ubisoft has recently come to this same realization and is doing something about it.

In a recent interview with GamesIndustry.biz, Anne Blondel-Jouin, Ubisoft s VP of live operations, said they are now looking to support games for between five to 10 years after launch.

To keep players engaged and avoid fragmentation, she said the studio has to be very careful with how it handles in-game monetization microtransactions .

That said, Blondel-Jouin outlined changes that Ubisoft is making to its DLC policy.

In short, they re permanently doing away with DLC that you d normally have to buy to get the full experience think new maps and game modes .

collect
0
Emmett Noble 2017-06-30
img

As difficult as the new Trial by the Sword DLC is, you at least know that it's possible thanks to early completionists.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild‘s new downloadable content release, Trial of the Sword, has been beaten less than a day on from its original launch.

It’s worth pointing out from the get go that this post will contain spoilers about the content of the DLC and its eventual reward, so if you don’t want to know what they are, stop reading now.

The Trial of the Sword is a 45-floor dungeon split into three sections that sees players facing off against all manner of enemies, in an effort to discover a lost treasure at its base.

You’re only able to use the gear you find inside, making it much more a test of player skill than other portions of the game, where you can outfit yourself with the best kit before attempting their challenges.

For one Zelda expert, however, this was still not hard enough.

collect
0
Johnny Huff 2017-06-11

From the sound of it this looks really much like re-skinned Battlefield, but I'm quite sure it's the thing most people wanted after all.

Also, I'm quite certain they'll find some way to add microtransactions (such as skins and progressions skips) but as long as it does not split the playerbase I'm perfectly fine with it.

collect
0
Albert Hummel 2016-05-19
img

Get your sea captain's hat and harpoon at the ready, Far Harbor is the latest and biggest DLC in the Fallout 4 universe and it's ready to play today.

Bethesda released the add-on at midnight and it's looking like the island adds a huge area to explore, with new weapons, armour, monsters and quests to fill out.

To get started, download the DLC separately, then go to the Fallout 4 add-on menu to check it's there.

Load up the game, and as long as you've done a Nick Valentine quest 'Getting a clue', you'll be able to receive the pipboy notification that'll start you off.

Watch lead developers talk us through what to expect, here:

We attempted to re-create some of our favourite movie robots in Fallout 4 Automatron

collect
0
James Maloch 2016-07-13
img

Fallout 4 has already seen a number of substantial DLC packs since it launched in November, including the robot-focused Automatron expansion and the spooky mystery of Far Harbor.

The game s next expansion, Vault-Tec Workshop, won t be giving you new missions to conquer or enemies to blast, but it will let you become the all-knowing Overseer in just a few weeks.

Just like with the mobile and now PC game Fallout Shelter, you ll be able to build your own vault from scratch in Vault-Tec Workshop.

Vault dwellers are equipped with the weapons they need to take out invading forces, such as those pesky Radscorpions, but you have quite a bit more control over your dwellers than was possible in Fallout Shelter.

Like every good Overseer, run Vault-Tec approved experiments on your dwellers to learn what makes an ideal citizen, Bethesda says.

Vault-Tec has given you the tools, the rest is up to you!

collect
0
Vivian Matthews 2017-07-04
img

Video games have changed immeasurably since the days of tape loading and cover-mounted floppy discs.

Yet, inflation aside, the price we pay at the till remains the same now as it was 25 years ago.

We asked the industry to explain five of the most controversial aspects of modern games buying – and, crucially, why they happen.

Activision Blizzard made over $3.6bn from optional DLC included in titles such as Call of Duty and Overwatch.

“You can see how the DLC enables the developers to keep doing the thing they want to do.” Speaking off the record, one executive at a leading global games publisher pointed out a logical maxim: only the popular payment systems survive.

A season pass is an additional purchase on top of a game’s upfront price that grants access to future content that will be added to a game, be that new multiplayer maps or story levels.

Adrian Bray 2017-03-08
img

Activision plans to add the Call of Duty 4 Variety Map Pack to Modern Warfare Remastered next week.

Carrying the very same name as the downloadable content released nine years ago, the variety map pack will add four new battlegrounds previously found in the iconic shooter.

These include Broadcast, Chinatown, Creek and Killhouse.

The $15 expansion will also feature 10 rare supply drops normally obtained through in-game currency.

A UK price point is yet to be confirmed.

You can check out full descriptions of all the new additions on the Activision Blog.

Robert Carter 2016-08-25
img

Ubisoft says that lingering issues are necessitating a delay in the launch of The Division DLCs, with Survival now being slated to release separately from Update 1.4.

The update will be released this upcoming October, dealing with bugs and more, while Survival s release has been pushed back to some time later this year and, as a result, the Last Stand release has been pushed back to some time in early 2017.

Specific dates haven't been provided at this time.

The Division has been out for half a year, and unfortunately it is suffering from what Ubisoft says are lingering issues it needs to deal with.

It is going to use the planned update 1.4 to deal with those issues, improving the core gameplay to get the game where it needs to be.

The update will, says Ubisoft, focus on the following:

Toby Taft 2016-11-23
img

Titanfall 2 s first piece of free downloadable content will launch next week in the form of Angel City s Most Wanted,

Those who pre-ordered the game will gain access to the content via a free update on November 30, while everyone else has to wait until December 3.

The highlight of this content drop is easily Angel City, a complete remake of one of the original Titanfall s fan favourite maps.

In addition to this free map, the update will give you a few new goodies to kit out your Titan with:

Ion: Refraction Lens - Splitter Rifle splits five ways

Scorch: Scorched Earth - Flame Core ignites the ground, leaving thermite in its wake

Ruth Johnson 2017-11-08
img

Games publishing giant Ubisoft has announced a major financial milestone, and one which will not be welcomed by those against the practice of day-one downloadable content and pay-to-win microtransactions: The company earned more from 'player recurring investment' than direct digital sales in the first half of its 2018 financial year.

Announced as part of the company's 1H 2018 financial report, the figures paint a picture of sudden and sharp growth: Digital revenue rose 69.1 percent for the half, to €342.6 million, which includes €174.5 million in what the company calls 'player recurring investment' or PRI - income received after the original sale of the game through in-game purchases, downloadable content, season passes, subscriptions, and advertising.

That 83 percent growth in PRI year-on-year has rocketed it above direct digital distribution income, which grew only 57 percent to €168 million - meaning that, for the first time in the company's history, it is making more money from in-game advertising and add-on content than from the digital sales of games themselves.

'In addition to [our] new releases, players are engaging with a large amount of additional high-quality content which provides them with longer-term entertainment,' said co-founder and chief executive Yves Guillemot of his company's performance.

'This includes Blood Orchid, the recent major update to Rainbow Six Siege, and Ghost War, the highly-acclaimed PvP mode for Ghost Recon Wildlands.

And it doesn't stop there: in the coming weeks we will notably release Resistance, a massive free update to The Division, and South Park: Phone Destroyer, a free-to-play mobile game.

Garland Marsella 2017-09-02
img

Not only is Forthog a powerful ally in the game, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Mike Forger's family

The newest downloadable content package announced for Middle-earth: Shadows of War features a tribute to an executive producer at Monolith who died from brain cancer during the game’s development.

The Forthog Orc Slayer DLC is based on Mike “Forthog” Forger, who passed away in 2016.

The content package will be available for $5, and $3.50 from each purchase in the U.S. will be donated to Forgey’s family.

Some of the developers paid tribute to Forgey and discussed the new character in a video stream.

“We lost Mike to cancer during the development of Shadow of War, and we want to remember and honor him with a little bit of immortality in Mordor,” said WB Games in a statement.

Emmett Noble 2017-06-30
img

As difficult as the new Trial by the Sword DLC is, you at least know that it's possible thanks to early completionists.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild‘s new downloadable content release, Trial of the Sword, has been beaten less than a day on from its original launch.

It’s worth pointing out from the get go that this post will contain spoilers about the content of the DLC and its eventual reward, so if you don’t want to know what they are, stop reading now.

The Trial of the Sword is a 45-floor dungeon split into three sections that sees players facing off against all manner of enemies, in an effort to discover a lost treasure at its base.

You’re only able to use the gear you find inside, making it much more a test of player skill than other portions of the game, where you can outfit yourself with the best kit before attempting their challenges.

For one Zelda expert, however, this was still not hard enough.

Albert Hummel 2016-05-19
img

Get your sea captain's hat and harpoon at the ready, Far Harbor is the latest and biggest DLC in the Fallout 4 universe and it's ready to play today.

Bethesda released the add-on at midnight and it's looking like the island adds a huge area to explore, with new weapons, armour, monsters and quests to fill out.

To get started, download the DLC separately, then go to the Fallout 4 add-on menu to check it's there.

Load up the game, and as long as you've done a Nick Valentine quest 'Getting a clue', you'll be able to receive the pipboy notification that'll start you off.

Watch lead developers talk us through what to expect, here:

We attempted to re-create some of our favourite movie robots in Fallout 4 Automatron

Donald Ellison 2017-06-14
img

While a lot of the focus on Nintendo’s E3 may center around Metroid and Mario, Breath of the Wild was also on display during the show.

In a trailer run yesterday during the company’s E3 livestream, Nintendo gave us our first looks at the DLC coming along with the Breath of the Wild season pass.

We’ve heard a lot of this information before, but there are some new details that will definitely please Breath of the Wild fans.

This seems to be the DLC pack that most Breath of the Wild veterans will be interested in, as it includes Master mode, a new difficulty that significantly ups the challenge of Breath of the Wild.

Nintendo says that every enemy in the game will go up by one rank, so you’ll have a tougher time of taking them down right from the start.

We’ll even see high-ranking enemies that aren’t in the normal version of Breath of the Wild, so expect quite a challenge from those as well.

Timothy Corn 2017-10-10
img

Ahead of the Assassin’s Creed: Origins launch later this month, Ubisoft has unveiled the downloadable content that will be available for free and for folks who purchase a season pass.

Origins will be out on October 27 for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4, as well as on Xbox One X on November 7.

The season pass is available for $40, and it’s also packaged as a part of Assassin’s Creed: Origins Gold Edition, which is available for $110.

Some exclusive DLC for season pass owners will be available when the game launches, such as a weapon, the Calamity Blade, and 500 Helix Credits, which are the in-game currency.

In November, players will get access to The Roman Centurion and Horus Packs, which unlock new costumes, weapons, shields, and mounts.

Farther down the line, The Hidden Ones and The Curse of the Pharaohs expansion packs will become available as part of the season pass in January and March 2018 respectively.

Mark Moore 2016-11-23
img

Ubisoft has said it wants to soften its stance on requiring gamers to pay for premium and additional content for its games, particularly in case where large changes are made to key games to keep them fresh over the long term.

Anne Blondel-Jouin, the company's VP of live operations, told GamesIndustry.biz that it would like to think it can keep some of its big brand multiplayer games online for between five and ten years now, and to do this requires a rethink of how in-game transactions and paid upgrades are handled.

Blondel-Jouin said: "The key is if it's not adding something on-top of the actual experience of the game, then it is no good.

Because you'll be asking for more money for the wrong reasons.

Also, if the content is compulsory for the gamers, it's no good as well."

"No more DLC that you have to buy if you want to have the full experience," she added, which sounds like quite a popular movement to free the DLC and bring about an end to various overpriced bonus bundles is about to get underway, via the medium of a promissory box sticker.

Pedro Cote 2017-09-27

And then there's 2012's Assassin's Creed Unity, which portrays him as a tyrant who describes the world as "nothing but a carcass on which mankind feeds like worms," before promising to embark on a "genocidal crusade."

Unity, which led one Jean-Luc Mélenchon to describe it as a "smearing [of] the great revolution," caused so much upset that publisher Ubisoft was forced to tell French newspaper Le Monde that the game was in fact "not a history lesson" (and that's to say nothing of the door knobs).

Audio narration, pictures, drawings, and 3D objects bring the tours to life alongside the existing open-world recreation of ancient Egypt, which tells a tale of Templars and Assassins from the building of the pyramids through to the reign of Cleopatra.

While the technicalities are yet to be finalised, there are some remaining video game mechanics designed to funnel players through tours.

Some remain locked until others are completed, while your choice of character (unlike in the campaign, you aren't limited to playing as protagonist Bayek) affects the types of tours accessible.

Basing an entire educational mode on what is only a skin-deep reading of history is an interesting move, although Geusdon says that Historians and Egyptologists were brought on board during the development process to add accuracy.

Eric Spilde 2017-07-19
img

The cleverly named update 6.66 ‘Ultimate’ update for Bethesda’s DOOM video game has arrived, and with it comes an unlocking of all the DLCs.

The game, which is now more than a year old, pits players against the forces of hell in what has largely been a well-received version of the classic game.

According to Bethesda, new people and early players are still enjoying this title, and now everyone is getting a chance to try the game via free weekends.

As great as it is, DOOM is now a bit dated and so it’s no surprise Bethesda is moving to renew interest.

To make the game more appealing, the company is ditching the season pass arrangement and unlocking all of the DLC content.

That means everyone gets access to the trio of multiplayer packs, of which there are the nine top maps, more playable demons and guns, additional armor and equipment, and other stuff.

Phillip Willis 2016-11-22
img

Premium DLC has long been the bane of gamers, especially if it s the type that s borderline necessary in order to experience the core game the way it was meant to be played.

Fortunately for gamers, developer Ubisoft has recently come to this same realization and is doing something about it.

In a recent interview with GamesIndustry.biz, Anne Blondel-Jouin, Ubisoft s VP of live operations, said they are now looking to support games for between five to 10 years after launch.

To keep players engaged and avoid fragmentation, she said the studio has to be very careful with how it handles in-game monetization microtransactions .

That said, Blondel-Jouin outlined changes that Ubisoft is making to its DLC policy.

In short, they re permanently doing away with DLC that you d normally have to buy to get the full experience think new maps and game modes .

Johnny Huff 2017-06-11

From the sound of it this looks really much like re-skinned Battlefield, but I'm quite sure it's the thing most people wanted after all.

Also, I'm quite certain they'll find some way to add microtransactions (such as skins and progressions skips) but as long as it does not split the playerbase I'm perfectly fine with it.

James Maloch 2016-07-13
img

Fallout 4 has already seen a number of substantial DLC packs since it launched in November, including the robot-focused Automatron expansion and the spooky mystery of Far Harbor.

The game s next expansion, Vault-Tec Workshop, won t be giving you new missions to conquer or enemies to blast, but it will let you become the all-knowing Overseer in just a few weeks.

Just like with the mobile and now PC game Fallout Shelter, you ll be able to build your own vault from scratch in Vault-Tec Workshop.

Vault dwellers are equipped with the weapons they need to take out invading forces, such as those pesky Radscorpions, but you have quite a bit more control over your dwellers than was possible in Fallout Shelter.

Like every good Overseer, run Vault-Tec approved experiments on your dwellers to learn what makes an ideal citizen, Bethesda says.

Vault-Tec has given you the tools, the rest is up to you!