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RE: On-disc "DLC" for Street Fighter x Tekken

Imagine you just bought a house. It's time to move in and you want to walk each room of the house to get an idea of how you'll arrange your stuff. The first few rooms are open but you suddenly run into an issue: some rooms downstairs are locked and you didn't get a set of keys to unlock these rooms when you bought the house!

At this point you contact the agent who sold you the house assuming there must be some misunderstanding. The agent informs you that the keys to these doors were not included in the final price of the house, that you must purchase them separately. Additionally, they keys are not currently available for purchase, you will have to wait until a similar model home is on the market in another neighborhood. The agent reassures you that the closets, windows, and air vents will be useable at no charge. The price you paid was for what is currently unlocked is quite fair for the market, but you bought the entire house!

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Street Fighter x Tekken is a great game, one of the most fun fighting games I've played in a while, but the way DLC (as others have excellently coined it "Disc-Locked Content" in this scenario) for this game has been handled is pretty terrible.

Statements have been made about how SFxT was going to try new approaches to the fighting game genre, why not also revise the approach to pricing? The default roster is pretty substantial, but there are more complete characters on the disc! In previous cases (MvC3 and MK9 come to mind), the characters were incomplete and needed additional tweaks to finalize, but that doesn't appear to be the case with SFxT.

Why not simply charge more right out of the gate for this game? If you're confident in the product you've released, why not push all the content (or at least the roster content) that is on the disc at a premium price? I would have paid ~$90 for a "complete" Special Edition of the game with all characters and been fine with it, but instead I have to wait... to pay for content that is already on a disc I already own.

In the replies to the BBB complaints, the general response that "on disc DLC is no different than downloaded DLC" is pretty insulting to your audience. In my mind, this comes out the same as "either way, we're going to get your money." I'm a huge fan of Capcom games, but this level of presumptuous thinking will turn me away from a company's product faster than just about anything.

Such a pity too, because I was really looking forward to Capcom vs SNK 3.
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Greg Crump's profile photoMichael Hausmann's profile photo
 
This is going to start happening more and more.... because of the success of MMO's as well as micro-transactions game companies now feel that they work on a product for 4 years(example) and then release the product at a price, why shouldn't they continue getting money for that product. And whether its on disc or downloaded it really is the same thing, they are making you pay either way - its kinda sad to me. Imagine if this happened a while back, pick up FFVI then start playing through it after a while they release a character pack that allows you to get additional characters(Shadow and the like), and then the expansion of the World of Ruin comes out! Another reason to keep buying stuff..... That would have sucked then, and it does now. Just make a game and finish it. Give it to me and let me play it. No I don't want 50 endings, nor do I want a special hat for my character, and no I don't want to end up paying upwards of 100 dollars for something that used to cost me 40.

That being said - if game companies want to add more content to a game that I loved and play often, then kudos, I will gladly pay for that and enjoy it. But I think there is a difference between additional content and content that should have been included originally that they are holding out on so they can increase there sales numbers in a slow month.
 
It is funny that you mention FFVI, because I think it is a great example of how more game can justify higher price. In the SNES days, RPGs were typically in the $70 range when the average game sold for $50. I'm not an expert, but I believe this was a combination of pushing higher capacity (more chips) on the cartridges to support the amount of content as well as tailoring their profit per sale to the smaller American RPG audience of the 90s.

I see disc-locked and download content being similar only in terms of control. As you alluded to, I think there is a desire to control "when" we access this content, which I don't agree with. Think of the following situations:
- A tracklist on a CD is intentionally limited to ~12 tracks since it is the average, but the CD has 16 tracks that require purchase of a special code to access
- A blu-ray for a TV series has several episodes locked out until later purchase is allowed.
- The photo editing software you downloaded has a full shader tool that was announced as a future update already coded into the software, just not unlocked yet

My point is that these are all issues where you're potentially getting more content than what the average item in that genre delivers, so paying more for it upfront seems like a reasonable option if the company releasing these items feels they're exceeding standard content expectations.
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