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Image of Downloadable Content: A gamer's dream or game developer's tool for more money?

In my many years of gaming, I have been exposed to new innovations that keep games more fresh. One of those mind blowing concepts was none other than downloadable content (also known as DLC). DLC is a notion which, while once restricted to the idea of patches, minor updates, and expansions in the realm of PC games, made its way to consoles such as the Xbox360 and the PS3.

DLC began as a cool concept which lengthened the gamer's experience by providing additional missions, characters, or maps. But before long, the manufacturers saw it as an opportunity to squeeze extra cash from gamers who would painfully open their wallets to have the latest and best bit of content for their games. Gamers can expect to fork over $5-to-$8 for something so simple as an additional character or up to $10-$15 for a measly 3 extra maps for multiplayer FPS games or a side mission for a game that may not even last a full hour. Naturally, loyal fans of these products bought these premiums in droves, fueling the fire.

What disgusts me even more is the dreaded day-1/day-0 DLC or "disc-locked content." These are the most heinous tactic used to withhold content from the retail release in order to receive more money. This has been used by many companies such as Capcom, Bioware, EA, and others.

My solution for this was simple: Don't buy those ridiculous DLCs and not give business to those companies that rely on them!

Do you think downloadable content has gone too far? If yes, what is your solution to this gamer epidemic?



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