Tip for Capcom: don’t announce DLC before you’ve released the game

Capcom just announced the characters it will be offering as additional downloads for Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite. The trouble is that the game isn’t even out until tomorrow.

I get that DLC is a part of gaming life now. But as a consumer, it sticks in my craw that publishers are hyping up more things that they can sell to me before they’ve even released the thing I’m meant to buy them for.

I understand that during the development process, there’s likely to be a plan – however vague – for possible downloadable content further down the line. But, and perhaps I’m being naive, the thing I want as a consumer is to believe that the publisher and developer are putting their heart and soul into making the base game as good and feature-filled as it can be before it finally rolls off the production line and onto shop shelves. If you start telling me about add-on extras before the game is even released, I get the suspicion that you might just be holding back on game assets that you’ve already developed but deliberately didn’t put into the game, just so you could make an extra buck or two on them down the line.

No one wants to be taken for a fool. And bragging about DLC before a game is even out makes fools of us all.

UPDATE (3rd Oct 2017): I’ve had a bit more time to think about this and digest the comments on this post – check out my response here.

14 Comments

  1. I imagine they just figure that everyone just takes it as a given for every game that comes out now anyway. Especially with fighting games. It’s inevitable that there will be a pile of dlc characters and costumes so why even pretend otherwise?

    I mean, of course I’d rather have it all in one package to begin with in the first place and usually I won’t touch a fighting game anymore until the ultimate version with all the extras comes out at a lower price a year or two later, but…I guess it’s an effective practice sometimes, as I already went all in on the collector’s edition with ultimate deluxe season pass on this one thanks to that E3 demo…

    Capcom is funny that way. They really know how to get the most extra money out of their fans, but they do at least almost always give you a really high quality product for your investment.

  2. When I see DLC advertised before a game release, I immediately suspect that the publishers and/or developers care more about monetization than game-play quality; and then I naturally worry about whether the game will have quality at all.

      1. Like when, for instance?

        You’d be hard pressed to find a major game these days that didn’t come out a season pass for future DLC that they want you to buy before release day. Even Nintendo does it. Breath of the Wild did it. The new Metroid will probably do it. Are these bad games now?

        As distasteful as some might find the practice, I don’t see how these things are mutually exclusive.

      2. You’ve got some good points there, and I’ve been thinking a bit more about this. I think a follow-up post is in order…

  3. Or they can wait and tell us that. They will give us the TRUE true final ending, like they did with Asura’s Wrath. What I think matters more is the type of dlc and micro trans they are trying to give you. In which case, timing of announcement can be all over the place.

    Anyways, I know what you mean. Tics me off too. Especially when it hurts the main gaming experience. Instead of enhancing it.

  4. *Agrees with Lucius* I’m sorry Sir Rich, but as a skint guy (still can’t afford to game & recent hikes in price by electric companies ain’t exactly helped any *Sighs Wistfully* Kingdom Hearts 2….. Rogue Galaxy….. Super Paper Mario… But I digress! Yes, waiting a year is a nice thing (I’m currently picking up PS3 & XBOX360 titles for £1 a pop!) But surely the ideal would be: jus bringin out a completely solid game experience from day 1 (bug patches already included)…. & then, only if need be, or if a writer says ‘you know what? I could do another story so we could show a different perspective on the plot if ya like?’ You know? Not just ‘Horse Armour’ *Shakes Head & Sighs*

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