News Posts matching "DLC"

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On Ubisoft's Aim to End Finite Gaming Experiences

Lionel Rainaud, Executive Vice President of Creative for Ubisoft's Canadian studios, shared via a blog post an interesting, albeit not novel idea, for games. The aim is to end the disparaging of resources that is the finite game experience: as in, the game that you experience once or twice, but that once you've seen the campaign's completion and finished all the end content, goes back on the shelf never to see the light of your interest again: all the development time (measured in years) and effort (and dollars) for what amounts to an 8-hour experience (or less). The goal, then, seems to be to take online experiences to a whole new level, where a game's content can be constantly updated so as to keep the credits from rolling.
"(...) the will to not give finite experiences. The idea was that you have this conflict, and the resolution, and then it's finished - you've killed the bad guy, for instance. We build a strong nemesis, and the goal of the game is to kill him or free the country, we've done that a few times in our games. But when you succeed, you have to leave the game, because there is nothing else to do. So the goal was to break this, and say that you will be the hero of a region or population many times, not just once. And if you get rid of a dictator or an oppressor, something else is going to happen in the world, and you will have a new goal.

Lose by a Hundred, Lose by a Thousand: Black Ops 4 DLC Locked for Season Pass Buyers

Well, add this one decision by Activision to either a sensible, forward-thinking, profit-maximizing business decision or as another in a death by a thousand cuts scenario for the Call of Duty series. As big a behemoth as the series is, we doubt this will see the end of it; but whatever the side of that particular fence you're on, the decision to lock all eventually-launched DLC content behind a pay-once, get-it-all paywall seems to have struck the wrong cord with gamers and fans of the series.

Activision has announced that all future DLC releases will only be available and launched for Season Pass holders, and won't be able to be purchased in separate packages. There may be various reasons for this decision; one of them is that gamers are paying the development cost for DLC upfront, and thus, Activision knows exactly how much it can stretch the budget in each of the content releases. They can't change the actual release contents - those are set with the Season pass Announcement - but it's almost guaranteed they will scale back in map and asset complexity according to how many Season Pass bundles they sell - and thus, money they make.

Ubisoft Announces 'Hours of Darkness' DLC for Far Cry 5

Today, Ubisoft announced Far Cry 5: Hours of Darkness, the first post-launch adventure, will release on June 5th across all platforms. The first DLC will transport players back in time as they play Hope County's Wendell "Red" Redler, who must find and rescue his fellow squad members from hostile forces during the Vietnam War. Hours of Darkness can be purchased as a standalone DLC or as part of the Far Cry 5 Season Pass and Gold Edition.

Far Cry 5: Hours of Darkness transports players into a war-torn Vietnam as they relive the harrowing experience of Wendell Redler from the main campaign of Far Cry 5. Playable in solo or online co-op, Hours of Darkness transports players from rural Montana to a dangerous jungle where they must rescue imprisoned squad mates, wreak havoc on the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Army, and fight to get back home. This first DLC adventure will feature new gear and abilities as well as two different playable modes that will be unlocked after completing Hours of Darkness: Survivor Mode, giving players a limited load out for a more challenging play through, and Action Movie Mode, where a generous load out delivers over-the-top action.

Relic Terminates Development Of Further Dawn of War III Content

Relic Entertainment today announced that they were shifting focus and developing resources from developing any further content for Dawn of War III. As the third iteration in the RTS series has seen lukewarm response form critics, gamers, and the market as a whole, the company has said that "When a game underperforms, plans need to change. With Dawn of War 3, we simply don't have the foundation we need to produce major content. We're working in close partnership with Sega and Games Workshop to determine the best course of action, while shifting focus to other projects within our portfolio."

This likely means that no further updates will be delivered to the game, leaving players who were expecting to receive a new playable race in future DLC drops will remain wanting. Luckily, this means that Relic now has more resources to power onto other studio projects - one such could be the next iteration in the acclaimed Age of Empires franchise, which the company is currently working on. With Dawn of War being as expansive a universe as it is, it seems unlikely that the series will be put on ice and development of a franchise-related game won't be developed for Relic; however, that could still be an option. It remains to be seen what game,s and what projects, Relic Entertainment will choose to invest in.

Ubisoft Gets Serious On Far Cry 5 Season Pass: Zombies, Forests and Mars

Ubisoft has seemingly taken the "no holds barred" approach to the Season Pass and DLC packages for its upcoming Far Cry 5 game. Building upon one of its most well recognized franchises, Ubisoft has apparently (if allegedly, for now; we'll see when the actual content drops) for a CD Projekt Red-esque approach to DLC. Whereas before DLC options were relatively mundane and wouldn't set anyone's world on fire (except for Far Cry 3's expansion Blood Dragon), the company today announced that the Season Pass for Far Cry 5 will include three distinct environments for players to do battle in, alongside access to a digital copy of Far Cry 3 Classic Edition (the one with Vaas and the definition of insanity, yes).

Endless Space 2 Starts This Year with 'Vaulters' Expansion and Free Add-ons

Every year Amplitude celebrate the studio's anniversary with their players. For our seventh year of existence we're going BIG, kicking off with the reveal of the Vaulters Expansion for Endless Space 2!

THE VAULTERS EXPANSION - COMING JANUARY 25
This first Endless Space 2 Expansion re-introduces players to the Vaulters, an all-time fan favorite civilization that has been featured in all the Endless games. Did you know that in Dungeon of the Endless you play the crew that will ultimately become the Vaulters in Endless Legend? Auriga is a small world!!! Here's a quick overview of what you can expect from the "Vaulters" DLC. A new civilization means a new way to play, the Vaulters will have the ability to teleport and use the Argosy - their legacy super colonizer ship featured in the Prologue video.

Assassin's Creed Origins Gets 'The Hidden Ones' DLC on January 23

Today, Ubisoft announced that The Hidden Ones, the first downloadable content (DLC) for Assassin's Creed Origins, will launch on January 23rd, 2018, on all platforms. Ubisoft also revealed release dates for upcoming Assassin's Creed Origins post-launch content, including season pass content and free add-on content, available to all players. Players can continue their journey through Ancient Egypt with a wide variety of content, including several hours of new storyline expansions and quests, timed events and customization items.

DLC 1 - The Hidden Ones: This story-driven expansion builds upon the growth of the Brotherhood, taking players four years after the events of Assassin's Creed Origins, as they clash with an occupying Roman force in a new region of the world, the Sinai. This expansion will increase the level cap to 45, allowing players to continue to upgrade and customize their character. Players will have access to four new Legendary weapons, a new outfit, two new mounts and multiple new weapons, as well as two new levels for all crafted gear. The Hidden Ones DLC is available for all season pass owners or can be purchased separately on January 23, 2018.

Dragon Bones DLC Coming Soon to The Elder Scrolls Online

Zenimax Online Studios has revealed details on the first major update of 2018 for The Elder Scrolls Online - a two-dungeon DLC Game Pack called Dragon Bones, and Update 17, a free addition for everyone which includes a slew of new features and upgrades that make ESO better than ever. Dragon Bones and Update 17 are expected to launch in February.

The Dragon Bones DLC Game Pack will include two new dungeons - Scalecaller Peak and Fang Lair - available in both normal and veteran modes, with a veteran Hard Mode for each final boss. These new dungeons pit players against new and returning enemies, including plague-ridden ogres, powerful sorcerers and their undead creations, and even the reanimated bones of an ancient dragon.

Mass Effect 2 and 3 DLC Bundles Now Available for Direct Purchase on Origin

Purchasing DLCs for the Mass Effect 2 and 3 games has always been a pain, and expensive too. Players couldn't purchase the DLCs directly from the Origin Store. Instead, they had to buy special Bioware Points that are only sold in packages. Currently, the 800 and 1600 points packages cost $10 and $20, respectively. Due to the huge variation in Bioware Points between each DLC, players usually spend more than necessary to get enough points to purchase a specific DLC and sometimes end up with unused points. Although it's a little over due, EA finally puts the DLCs up for direct purchase on the Origin Store. The Mass Effect 2 DLC bundle is priced at $24.99, while the Mass Effect 3 DLC bundle will set you back $29.99. Just a reminder that the Origin Holiday Sale is still in effect, so you can get the standard edition for $6.49 if you don't already own them.

Total War: Warhammer II Rise of the Tomb Kings Campaign Pack Up for Preorder

Across the arid wastes of once-proud Nehekhara, legions of skeletal warriors and vast, terrifying constructs rise from the sands to serve their ageless masters. The Tomb Kings have awoken - to rebuild their glorious empire anew! New to both the Eye of the Vortex campaign and Mortal Empires in Total War: WARHAMMER II, the Rise of the Tomb Kings Campaign Pack introduces an entirely fresh campaign experience with a raft of race-specific gameplay mechanics, victory objectives, and lashings of authentic lore. In battle, the Tomb Kings field countless skeletal units, supported by towering stone constructs such as the Tomb Scorpion, Necrosphinx and the colossal Hierotitan.

In response to player feedback, Rise of the Tomb Kings does not contain a supplementary story campaign, but instead 2 additional Legendary Lords for a total of four, with their own skills, traits, quest-chains, legendary wargear and situational challenges. Players may embark on Tomb Kings campaigns as Settra the Imperishable, Khalida, Khatep and Nagash's former lieutenant, the malignant Arkhan the Black.

Bungie Vows to Stop Locking Destiny 2 Players' Activities Behind Latest DLC

A lot of controversy has hit Bungies' Destiny 2. If some concerns regarding the first game have been (somewhat) answered with the new systems and story integration of the latest Bungie release, the fact is that Destiny 2 has been, time and again, in the crosshairs of gamers for some reason or other. From weapons shipping with game-breaking bugs, to controversies regarding hidden experience scaling systems, it seems Bungie is moving from one trap to another in Destiny 2. And for the second time in a month, the company has vowed to start being more transparent, and listening more to the community they serve - and need.

The controversy now stems from Bungie's decision to lock players out of the late game content following the launch of Curse of Osiris. The idea was solid - increase the level of endgame activities, such as Raids and the Trials of the Nine multiplayer, to keep them relevant in the wake of new, higher-level equipment. However, this effectively locked players with only the base game from virtually all chances of succeeding in these activities, since only Curse of Osiris equipment could give players the Light level they'd need to have a chance at completing those activities. IN a blog post, Bungie has vowed to do better for gamers next time, and is moving to reset all base game activities to their base level - keeping base-game only players in the loop, and able to experience Destiny 2's systems.

The Division Update 1.8 Drops Tomorrow with Free Weekend & Free DLC Week

Today, Ubisoft announced that "Resistance," Update 1.8 for Tom Clancy's The Division will launch simultaneously on PlayStation4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One and Windows PC platforms tomorrow, December 5th. Coinciding with the release of Resistance, The Division Free Weekend is coming to all platforms from December 7th to December 10th. Additionally, all The Division owners will have free access to all of the expansions included in The Division's Season Pass (Underground, Survival, and Last Stand) from December 5th to December 10th. "Resistance," Update 1.8 is the largest free update thus far for Tom Clancy's The Division and expands the game map with a new area accessible to all players: West Side Pier.

Time to Get Tactical in Arma 3's Latest Mission Pack DLC

Bohemia Interactive today released the brand new Arma 3 Tac-Ops DLC Mission Pack. Delivering a true boots on the ground experience on a large-scale battlefield, players will be taking part in three distinct single player military operations. In Arma 3 Tac-Ops Mission Pack, players are tasked to lead an infantry, mechanized infantry, and/or special forces unit across an unrestricted warzone, often with multiple objectives to accomplish. The keys to success are thoughtful mission preparation, careful movement and positioning, skillful shooting, as well as patience.

Altogether, the missions should take at least 8+ hours to complete, which soon becomes more depending on playstyle and difficulty settings. Additionally, players can replay selected missions from the perspective of another unit. This, in turn, rewards them with a greater understanding of the military operation as a whole. Furthermore, people can watch special After Action Report (AAR) videos, which are presented by one of Bohemia Interactive's military consultants, and offer mission-specific insights on military tactics and combat.

Empire Divided DLC Takes Players Back to the Third Century in Total War: ROME II

SEGA Europe Ltd. today announced the launch of the new campaign DLC Empire Divided for Total War: ROME II. Empire Divided plunges players into the crisis of the third century, a do-or-die era for the Roman Empire. Players can embrace challenge of unifying the disparate Roman factions in glory - or playing as one of Rome's enemies, and dealing the killing blow.

Empire Divided breathes new life into ROME II, with 10 different playable factions, new victory conditions and new campaign features for players to contend with such as plagues, cults and banditry. Empire Divided also has a big narrative focus, as it chronicles the journeys of the characters and powers involved in this turbulent and fascinating time.

Civilization VI: Rise and Fall Expansion Pack Slated for February 2018 Launch

2K and Firaxis Games announced today that Sid Meier's Civilization VI: Rise and Fall, the expansion pack for the critically acclaimed and award-winning strategy title, will be available for Windows PC on February 8, 2018. Civilization VI: Rise and Fall brings new choices, strategies, and challenges for players as they guide a civilization through the ages. The expansion introduces new Great Ages, a new city loyalty system, and Governors while expanding existing Diplomacy and Government systems; and adds nine new leaders and eight new civilizations, a variety of new units, districts, wonders, buildings, and more. Players can now lead their empire into a Golden Age of prosperity or emerge triumphantly from a Dark Age into a memorable Heroic Age.

Free DLCs Coming to Middle-Earth: Shadow of War Before the Year Ends

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today announced various free content updates and features coming this year to Middle-earth: Shadow of War, providing players with new ways to continue the battle for Mordor and capture every epic moment. Upcoming free downloadable content (DLC) updates and features include:
  • Endless Siege - Defend your fortresses against Sauron's forces as the Dark Lord tries to reclaim Mordor in the Endless Siege. (Available 21st Nov)
  • Rebellion - Crush the rebel Ologs and Uruks in your forces as they seek to undermine the Bright Lord. (Available 21st Nov)
  • Enhanced Photo Mode - Capture every battle and siege and apply new filters, frames and textures with the Enhanced Photo Mode update. (Available 21st Nov)
  • Online Fight Pits - Challenge another player's Orc follower, Overlord vs. Overlord, to a fight to the death in the arena to earn powerful rewards and upgrades. (Available 5th Dec)
  • Brutal Difficulty - A new higher difficulty level even more challenging than Nemesis with no last chances. (Available 12th Dec)

EA Makes it Tougher to Cancel Battlefront 2 Pre-orders

EA is under fire for predatory pricing of DLC and add-ons for its upcoming "Star Wars: Battlefront 2" release. Gamers complain of the company effectively pricing it above $80 just to play as Darth Vader, and giving game reviewers a faster in-game content unlock progression, compared to paying gamers, misrepresenting the product. Pre-orders of the game can be cancelled and so gamers took to Reddit, and other forums, to distribute links to the pages on EA's website that let you easily cancel your pre-order. With pre-order cancellations gaining traction, EA pulled out its bag of dirty tricks.

The publisher has reportedly changed the way you cancel pre-orders. Instead of simply clicking on a web-based form to cancel your pre-order and get the reference number to your refund, you now have to speak with a sales agent via chat to cancel your order. Trouble is, that the process is bogged down by too many people trying to cancel their orders (due to a finite number of agents), and thus EA has effectively made it impossible for everyone who pre-ordered to cancel. Only those who can endure the long agent waiting queue to chat with an agent, can cancel their pre-orders, as the November 17 release-date (beyond which you can't cancel pre-orders), looms closer.

Ubisoft's Microtransactions Surpass Digital Games Sales in Earnings

Ubisoft has announced on its latest Q2 financials that earnings from microtransactions have exceeded proceeds from digital game sales. Digital revenue increased by a very respectable 69%, but Ubisoft says that Player Recurring Investment (PRI), or the sale of in-game items, DLC, season passes, and subscriptions, increased by a staggering 83% year-over-year, being responsible for €175 million (~$202.6 million) earned during the first two quarters of the year. This amounts to a cool 51% of total digital income, which means that actual digital games sales earned less than DLCs and microtransactions.

Total sales across both Q1 and Q2 came in at €466.2 million (~$539.9 million), up 60% year-over-year, but that's hardly the key point to this story. The key point here is that while a company that heavily focuses on linear, story-driven, single player games has just announced a 25% reduction in its workforce, Ubisoft has just announced tremendous games seemingly on the back of microtransactions and DLC, or, as the company puts it, Player Recurring Investment. We can say what we will regarding the chronicle of an announced death for story-driven single player games, but one fact remains: players love microtransactions, even as there's a universal understanding of loathing towards them.

Destiny 2's First Expansion "Curse of Osiris" Lands on December 5

Today at Paris Games Week, Bungie revealed Destiny 2 - Expansion I: Curse of Osiris. This is the first expansion to the Destiny 2 universe, which will be released on December 5, 2017 for PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One. Destiny 2 - Expansion I: Curse of Osiris, takes place after the conclusion of the Destiny 2 campaign where you are dispatched to Mercury on a quest to find Osiris, the most powerful Warlock to have ever lived, to discover the answers humanity needs to fight back against the Vex.

Curse of Osiris adds a new chapter to the world of Destiny 2, expanding the universe by adding an all-new cinematic story with new and returning characters, a new destination to explore, Mercury and its Infinite Forest, a new social space to visit called the Lighthouse, new missions, new strikes, new raid content, new free roam activities. a world quest to complete, and more.

Middle-Earth: Shadow of War Expansion Pass Includes Access to 4 DLCs

Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today released a new trailer for Middle-earth: Shadow of War detailing the Expansion Pass, which allows players to continue the battle for Mordor with all new Orc tribes and story campaigns. The Expansion Pass includes the following downloadable content (DLC):

Slaughter Tribe Nemesis Expansion
  • The gruesome Slaughter tribe invades Mordor introducing new missions, Epic and Legendary Orcs, tribal showdowns and fierce battles, brought to life through the Nemesis System.
  • New Slaughter tribe fortress with Overlord throne room, monuments and outposts.
  • Players can hunt down Legendary Slaughter tribe Orcs for a new Legendary gear set with additional upgrade challenges.
  • Slaughter Orcs are the most bloodthirsty in Mordor, capable of ambushing players at any point, creating a deadly new challenge for players.
  • Available November 2017.

Digital River: "Games as a Service, Microtransactions, Tripled Industry's Value"

A report from monetization service company Digital River has found that the gaming industries' value has roughly tripled since the inception of the G"Games as a Service Model", which includes DLC (like Destiny and Destiny 2' content modules) and microtransactions (of which loot boxes are all the rage these days). The report, titled "Defend Your Kingdom: What Game Publishers Need to Know About Monetization & Fraud", noted that developers of all sizes are benefiting from the "steady stream of in-game content that both serves player expectations and increases their revenue per user." And this doesn't apply to free-to-play games: the report states that "In 2016, a quarter of all digital revenue from PC games with an upfront cost came from additional content."

According to the report, "Consumers are less willing to pay $60 for a boxed game and instead choose titles with a steady stream of new content. Publishers seek to meet these expectations and have adopted a 'games as a service' model, releasing fewer titles over time while keeping players engaged longer with regular updates and add-ons." The fact that PC users are less willing to pay the full upfront cost of games, usually waiting a few weeks before taking the plunge so as to take advantage of lowered pricing - which occurs much earlier compared to other platforms - leads the report to say that PC gamers are "gaming the games market".

CD Projekt Red: We Will Not Give In to the Demands of Thieves

CD Projekt Red are the world-renowned studio responsible for RPG masterpiece The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and the two other less known, but still great Witcher RPGs before it. The company is one of the most gamer-oriented, generous game developers out there today, bar none. I say this, because this is a company who did some missteps before, but quickly backed out of them and that have created one of the most memorable and successful open-worlds to date. This is the studio that offered not only a soundtrack CD with their standard edition of the game, alongside a full-color map of the game world, but also went to the lengths of including a small letter to thank us for choosing their game over others. These developers offered 16 pieces of DLC with their game, DLC pieces that other studios had been (and have been) charging customers for.

The company outlined above have come forth in a tweet, publicly calling out an attempt from thieves to ransom stolen development files on the studios' upcoming sci-fi Cyberpunk 2077. CD Projekt Red said that they will not give in to demands from the individuals that have contacted them, and acknowledge that the public release of those files is likely to happen as a result. The studio also goes on saying that these files (if they even come to public now that their value has been thoroughly cut down) are "largely unrepresentative of the current vision for the game." I don't know about you, but I'd much prefer to get some info on CD Projekt Red's next project from themselves.

P.S.: This editor Is sorry for the above post looking eerily similar to a rant. I just have a low tolerance for this kind of behavior from any part, but most of all, when the targeted party is actually one of the studios that is more deserving of gamers' respect.

Next Gen Nintendo Console to Do Away with Optical Disc Media

Nintendo's upcoming high-performance game console, codenamed "Nintendo NX," could be the first major console in 15 years to completely do away with optical disc media. Patent applications covering the console, filed in February by Nintendo, with the USPTO, and unearthed by NeoGAF, describe a console that "is not provided with an optical disc drive." Nintendo is expected to reveal the NX some time in 2016.

This points at a new direction in which Nintendo wants to guide the console gaming industry - one in which an Internet connection is mandatory, games are bought from a centralized marketplace online, downloaded to your console's local storage (HDDs/SSDs), and played. DLCs and in-game purchases are as seamless as possible, and game progress, settings, etc., are stored on the cloud. Such a system already existed for close to a decade, with Xbox Live and PSN, but Nintendo NX will be the first platform to completely do away with optical disc media. This method could also curb piracy, since the only way your console can receive games to play is through that online marketplace.

Battlefield 3 Premium Sells Over 800K Since Launch

While many scoffed at Battlefield 3's late-arriving competitor to Call of Duty Elite, it seems to have worked quite splendidly for the publisher. More than 800,000 players have signed up for Premium in its first two weeks of availability, EA Games' Patrick Soderlund revealed. Although Premium less a "service" like Elite and more of a DLC Season Pass, the $50 asking price does include a lot of content. Namely, Premium includes access to over $75 worth of content, making it a "value" for hardcore fans of the series. Speaking to USA Today, Soderlund said that "we are very pleased with the performance so far." When asked if this strategy is something EA will pursue with future games, he said: "We're actually only two weeks into it, so it's a little early to tell how this is going to pay off. It certainly it looks very promising right now."

Call of Duty Elite currently has over two million paying subscribers, a number which took about six months to reach.

Borderlands 2 Special Editions Detailed

Borderlands 2 is a big fall release for both 2K Games and Gearbox, timed to hit just when you might be getting sick of grabbing loot from a certain other game. And as a big fall release, it's getting a few special editions, because of course it is. Today 2K and Gearbox detailed the two special editions of the game and the goodies stashed within. The "Deluxe Vault Hunter's Collector's Edition" ($99.99) includes a Marcus bobblehead, a hardbound art book, sticker set, map of Pandora, digital comic download code, and bonus in-game DLC. If you want to go bigger, the "Ultimate Loot Chest Limited Edition ($149.99) includes those items, plus a scaled replica of a red loot chest, steel book case, creatures ID chart, lithograph postcard set, field notes from Sir Hammerlock, a cloth map of Pandora, and a numbered certificate of authenticity.

As previously reported on Shacknews, pre-orders of either special edition will get access to the "Borderlands 2 Premiere Club," which nets you downloads of the Gearbox Gun Pack for extra weapons, a Golden Key to open a chest with a rare item in the Golden Sanctuary, the Vault Hunter's Relic to boost abilities, and the already announced Mechromancer class. Pre-ordering the standard edition will get you the Mechromancer as well, and 2K again reiterated that it will be post-launch content.
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