Poll

What Would You Perfer?

2-3 Expansions
32 (94.1%)
6-10 DLC Packs
1 (2.9%)
Other...If you must...you have to explian.
1 (2.9%)

Total Members Voted: 34

Author Topic: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions  (Read 1022 times)

Offline Ekalbs

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Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« on: 26-09-2010, 12:09:13 »
Im doing research for a paper for school. 

Currently there are two forms of "milking" a game:

Standard Expansions Typically:                 
  • Typically 1 - 3 Expansions
  • Priced: 20$ - 40$
  • Roughly Contains 25% - 50% Of original game content
                       

DLC:
  • Typically 5 - 10 Packs
  • Priced: 5$ - 15$
  • Contains roughly 5% - 15% Of original game content[l/i]
My question is which would you rather spend your hard earned money on? If you need a scenario here one is:

You have an RTS you rather enjoyed it.
   It features 4 unique factions
   Each one had there own campaign.
   Had roughly 30 maps

Expansion would add:
   Two factions with respected campaign.
   8 Maps themed to the above factions
   Releases maybe one or two a year

DLC would add:
   A single faction with respected campaign.
   3 themed maps
   released roughly every other month or two

I want your honest bias opinion. If you want to add something feel free too. Thanks i appreciate you input and hope this isn't counted as spam. if you dont have anything useful to say please dont it dosent help.

Ekalbs
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Offline Paasky

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #1 on: 26-09-2010, 13:09:14 »
I personally think expansions are better. DLC's just feel like something someone made in a few days, like small mods except you're paying for them. Expansions that truly bring new features to the core game feel like some work has gone into them. (Civilization 4, IL-2 Sturmovik)


Btw, I hope you're also making a chapter on how some feel DLC's are destroying games as an artform. Sort of like going to see a movie, paying the full admission, and after an hour the film says "insert coin to continue".


This is how I feel game development has changed:
[Previously vs Today]
Beta - Full Game
Additional content in patches - DLC's
Expansion pack - Completely new game

Basically quality has gone down while prices have gone up.


Hopefully this thread can kept clean of flaming.
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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #2 on: 26-09-2010, 13:09:06 »
I prefer cost FREE DLCs since anything else splinters the community and ruins the game.
This is the case for both expansion packs and DLCs that you have to buy.
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Offline Ekalbs

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #3 on: 26-09-2010, 13:09:05 »
I prefer cost FREE DLCs since anything else splinters the community and ruins the game.
This is the case for both expansion packs and DLCs that you have to buy.

Although i agree with you it is a business. The reason i did not include Free DLC is 1) its becoming rarer and rarer. 2) personally i look at it as an optional patch. I will abstain further options till after i deiced to close the poll.

Edit: the poll is meant to say 5-10 not 6-10
« Last Edit: 26-09-2010, 13:09:00 by Ekalbs »
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Offline THeTA0123

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #4 on: 26-09-2010, 13:09:17 »
The only DLC's i found worth where the Fallout 3 ones. They actually provided usefull things wich can be used the entire game

But i like expansions far more.
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Offline Kelmola

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #5 on: 26-09-2010, 13:09:04 »
The most annoying DLC packs are the ones that merely unlock contents already on the game disc (HAWX, SoulCalibur IV, etc.). Fortunately this has been mostly a console-only issue. But considering how lacking even the downloaded-for-real DLC often is, the entire concept reeks of milking the cash cow. Let's rename patches into DLC and charge money for that and let's not allow players to play multiplayer anymore unless they buy this DLC.  Meanwhile, an expansion usually radically enhances and changes the game and might add almost as much content and playtime as a full-on sequel.

Also, it's psychologically much easier to sell a game for let's say $30 but only include a fraction of the content and then incrementally charge $100 by the way of DLC's/expansions/micropayments. Not scared yet? Because this is what the boss of THQ actually intends to do. You will get only the skeleton of a game out of the box, perhaps won't be even able to complete it or play properly, unless you hand out extra cash. Sure, in the 80's and 90's shareware did work a bit like this, but usually you got the first "episode" completely free and if you liked it, then buying the entire game was still cheaper than buying a boxed game. Now you would pay almost the full price for the previously "free" appetizer and to be able to play properly would pay several times as much. Sounds like a bargain yet?

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #6 on: 26-09-2010, 13:09:11 »
What kemola says. They are ruining the gaming industry in their greed.
I mean I buy GOTY games but I definitely won't buy DLCs.
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Offline Gezoes

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #7 on: 26-09-2010, 15:09:51 »
I have one DLC for Napoleon Total War. I got it for free from the Creative Assembly as a present and excuse for Empire Total War. It's my only DLC. Funny thing is, when they released Rome Total War, one of the first patches (wich are ok ofcourse) had a new phalanx unit or something. It stated they would be releasing more units, sometimes along a patch, sometimes just as an extra. It never happened, the phalanx unit was the only one ever released. I guess that's the moment CA thought: Hey wait... :(

I voted for expansions obviously. Whatever happened to making a good, funpacked game. I mean, just look at the tidal wave of crap CA got when the long and eagerly awaited Empire hit the shelves. On top of that, the DLC's came. It didn't hurt them saleswise, it sold like crazy, but the shitstorm that followed was unprecedented and as a result, Napoleon was released as a 'seperate' game. I consider it a standalone expansion, wich was planned in the first place.

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #8 on: 26-09-2010, 16:09:14 »
I am going to take Total War as example; comparing Medieval 2 and Empire.

Medieval 2 was released and was alot of fun then we got an amazing expansion pack, Kingdoms, that for me felt like a brand new game, I loved it and quadrupled my playtime with it, 4 brand new campaigns that all had new different things and it didn't even feel like the original Medieval 2, it was a brand new game.

In Empire we got a too soon released game, sadly but can't help it, it was still a lot of fun. But more and more DLC's kept coming and I really felt like having to buy puzzle pieces to complete the game, made me sad. I was lucky I got the game for 30 euros on pre-order instead of 50 but in total I still paid 50 to make it complete...

So I vote for a refreshing new expansion pack instead of DLC's.
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Offline Dukat

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #9 on: 27-09-2010, 02:09:41 »
You have an RTS you rather enjoyed it.
   It features 4 unique factions
   Each one had there own campaign.
   Had roughly 30 maps

Expansion would add:
   Two factions with respected campaign.
   8 Maps themed to the above factions
   Releases maybe one or two a year

DLC would add:
   A single faction with respected campaign.
   3 themed maps
   released roughly every other month or two

The example doesn't state what kind of multiplayer mode is included. If you want profit, you release an expansion with 1 or 2 factions, small respected campaigns. You use the campaign maps as multiplayer maps as well to save development resources.
Then you balance the new factions with the 4 old factions and patch the main program as well so owners of the main program can play against owners of the expansion in multiplayer mode. This way owners of the main program can get hooked on the expansion.

This got several advantages:

- You do not have to waste resources on several patches for the various addons, each requiring individual balancing but you can create one patch for both main program and expansion.

- Updating both main programm together with the Expansions and allowing owners to play against each other keeps even the main program fresh, on time and on high quality level. The High quality level and long time patch support done on par for main program and one or more expansions will prove the quality of general support for both the series and your company.

- Instead of splitting the community on several expansion not compatible with each other, you reactivate old owners of the main program when releasing the Expansion, even offering them new content to spend time and expirience on, together with the new players who will thankfully find players.

- You can even sell the Expansion as Stand-Alone. You would not need to own the main program. Owners of the expansion could host their 8 maps for owners of the main program to join, and owners of the main program could host their multiplayer-maps for owners of the expansion to join, though none of them could host the maps of the other game themselves, if they don't own it. This way you could accumulate all the maps created to be played online with every expansion.

The result would be a very active community, which might be rather essential for the success of a game or series.

What I clearly think of is Company of Heroes and its Expansions. CoH was released 2006 and received about 30 patches so far, from Version 1.0 to Version 2.6. The Expansions received less updates, I think the first expansion came with patch 1.8, the second expansion with patch 2.3. Until today there are still thousands of players online. You cannot state that for every RTS game. The whole concept is pure magic and I believe they got very great sales.

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Offline Die Happy

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Re: Research: DLC Vs Exapansions
« Reply #10 on: 27-09-2010, 12:09:46 »
as few said before
cost free DLCs are a really good thing, just look at team fortress 2, L4D 1/2 but specially TF2, each time a new "DLC" or in this case more of an update with new content came out TF2 sales got really high again. although the game was out for months - 1 year. sure they had lots of discount action going on where you could get it for half price or even less but still good thing.

then you need to differ between multiplayer games and singleplayer games.
every addon/DLC (you need to pay for) in multipayer games has the potential of splitting up the community and thus breaking the game. in dawn of war 2 and company of heroes when they released the expasions and you didnt buy them you could still play against people with he new stuff but not use it yourself. kind of a solution but not really my cup of tea.

for multiplayer games i prefer full fledged expasions that everyone "gets" because they just offer so much more and keep the community together.

now for singleplayer games thats a different story.
the DLCs for fallout III for example work great.
same with mass effect I/II and also dragon age which besides the DLCs also has an expansion.
they were all quite resonable priced and gave enough playtime per buck.
and since you dont HAVE TO buy them like in many multiplayer games(community etc) you can decide easily if you liked the game enough to invest a few $€ more to get some more content.

TL:DR:
multiplayer games, preferable FREE DLCs or if you must pay then full expansions
singleplayer whatever you like, but i almost prefer DLCs since they come out faster.
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