Resident Evil 5 has now been released, but as we’ve found out over the past few days there is already DLC in the works that will enable a “Versus Mode”, which gives non-cooperative ways to play the game multiplayer. Unfortunately, unlike the free updates for Left 4 Dead and other Valve games, this DLC will cost $5.
While $5 is not the end of the world, this strikes me as a really poor idea, not just because it seems like a blatant attempt to quickly squeeze a bit more money out of customers for features that should’ve potentially been included with the game, but also because it strikes me as the kind of thing that will substantially reduce the number of people that can play it in this mode, thus possibly making the experience even worse for all of those who actually do purchase it (or at least reducing its longevity and therefore it’s long-term potential).
Separating out an entire multiplayer feature for DLC is much different than just selling new maps for a game. At least if the game ships with the feature I’ll know that I’ll always be able to play with anyone else who bought the game, whether or not they bought the new maps. What Capcom seems to be doing with RE5 seems more akin to if Bungie had decided to charge separately just to play Halo 3 multiplayer, and I think that probably would’ve been a pretty quick way to kill the Halo 3 community. Granted, the demand for competitive RE5 modes is probably less than Halo 3’s, but that shouldn’t really matter.
Capcom may want to think clearly about their DLC strategy going forward. There are certainly some people, many who have no problems paying for all kinds of DLC content, that are unhappy with the way they are treating their fans with their latest games.Posted in Business, Commentary, DLC, Jeff |