Free DLC (why is Downloadable Content not DC?) is by no means a new concept within the video games industry. Whether it has been smaller patches or pre order bonuses, Games developers and publishing companies have been giving away small bits of content without the end user having to part with their money for some time. More recently however, larger downloadable sections have been popping up with increasing frequency.
So whats going on on the D(L)C front right now?
Two games that I am currently playing have had DLC released on the same day. Bungies ‘Destiny’ and Ubisofts ‘The Division’ have both looked to achieve separate goals however.
Destiny has was released in September of 2014, and received… mixed reviews at launch. It has steadily improved over time and is now widely considered a great game by those that have played it in recently. It is however, well known for ‘The Grind’. This is in that the nature of the game means that the missions often need repeating in order to gain better loot. Because of this, it often needs further missions to play, as well as increasingly hard to achieve weapons and armor in order to appease its player base.
This is the primary reason that the free DLC has been offered. It is attempting to keep its player base in the game and willing to purchase additional products as and when they are released. Contrary to that (although always compared) is ‘The Division.’
The Division had a strong launch. The bestselling game on the Xbox one console of all time. But with its release date of March 8th, why is it already releasing a free DLC? The division suffers from the same ‘Grind’ as destiny does, but they have much less content to draw upon to do this at this time. The divisions paid for DLC is no doubt being relied upon to generate income, and it is of course a consideration, but the key to the success of the division is that it is a shared world shooter. Meaning that the active player count must remain high.
With Destiny and The Division sharing a player base due to the similarities in game-play structure, the loser of the free content battle may show a severe decrease in in game quality. With reviews of the releases being mediocre however, it’s less than likely that the player base will shift dramatically at this point. With The division releasing further free DLC next month however, we may see an interesting shift.
As always, Let me know you thoughts by; DM, @ on twitter, on Xbox Live (GT: IAmFoxGod) or by flagging me down in the street if you can find me.