PS3 News: Analyst: Content Is "King," Gamers To Spend Less On DLC - PS3 News

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Analyst: Content Is "King," Gamers To Spend Less On DLC

While extra content seems like a universal positive in the gaming industry these days, many gamers don't like the idea of being forced to buy additional content...especially when they thought it should've been part of the original production.

According to NPD analyst Anita Frazier, the video game industry is just running all over the film industry in North America; the former averaging $47.79 per consumer per month, which makes this "one of the most transformative years" for gaming. In addition to saying the industry is "recession resistant," Frazier adds that content "drives the industry," and gamers won't pay more for downloadable content. It's not so much the DLC itself, but the pricing; after examining nine different types of DLC, Frazier believes the "honeymoon period" for DLC is over. Simply put, gamers just aren't dropping the cash on the pricey extras. Therefore, adding a single level at 1/3 of the full game's price isn't something that's going to yield dividends anymore. Frazier says it's about the current "attitudes and opinions" of the gamers and we should interpret these results as "directional reporting." So essentially, if the DLC is very reasonably priced, it'll likely be successful, but that premium-priced content hasn't been so hot lately.

The bottom line is something we've been saying all along- content really is king. It's great to be able to build and expand upon a game after it has been released, but that doesn't mean developers can slack off on the product, or purposely leave out content in an effort to make more money at a later date. The good news is that gamers clearly aren't interested in rewarding such behavior so maybe we don't have to worry in the future.

7/28/2009 Ben Dutka

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Comments (35 posts)

Godslim
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 11:08:10 AM
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im still willing to pay but it has to be something worth it

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englishgolfer
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 11:10:21 AM
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whilst i agree with this analyst that, we the gamers, won't pay over the top prices for dlc, she's left her self open for attack from critics as she has only based her findings on "nine different types of dlc". that's not alot to base anything on. if i did that at my job i'd be told to go back and collect more data....

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ohmikkie
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 4:03:29 PM

I assumed it meant category types. Whatever they are.

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Highlander
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 11:18:26 AM
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Stack them high and sell them low? DLC has very little overhead, lower prices should mean greater sales. Seems logical enough to me.

Some games get it right. Cross Edge has had a lot of DLC. The only DLC that was paid was additional costumes for the characters. The costumes provide considerable bonuses to characters in the game, but are not game changing content, so it's a perk, not an integral part of the game. There have also been something like 16 free DLC packs that conveyed additional items for you to use. This is a good way to do DLC since it doesn't feel like you're being asked to pay extra just to use something that is necessary to the game.

Wipeout Fury is a pretty good DLC pack, it adds tons of content and is only $10. With the new Fury content, Wipeout HD actually feels like twice the game. I'd rather pay for that kind of DLC than pay for a new game version. A contrast to the old days when we'd have a new version every 12-18 months for popular games, and pay full cost for each.

Burnout Paradise is another example of both good and bad. The Island has made changes through the whole game, not just adding the Island. Compared to a full price game, the $15 is a bargain. On the flip side, some of the car packs (Boost Specials I am looking at you) have been way too expensive for the content that they brought. Interesting to see a publisher learning how to do DLC and getting it both wrong and right with the same game.

I completely agree content is king, and maybe publishers are hearing that message and learning. DLC has evolved, hopefully it will continue to evolve as the publishers learn.

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Jawknee
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 11:51:44 AM
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Some DLC is pretty decent. 6 new KZ2 maps for $11.99 wasn't bad. Think Capcom is the worset offender though when it comes to crap that should have been on the disc. Like the SFIV costumes and RE5 vs Mode. What a joke.

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ohmikkie
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 4:25:51 PM

Yep got them all and nobody plays 'em any more. Hardly anyone plays last weeks release. Well at least when I'm looking.

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Wage SLAVES
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 6:52:33 PM

That is not bad at all compared to Versus for Resident Evil that is probably on the disc anyway. You just have to pay $5 for the key...

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SkantDragon
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 12:16:38 PM
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I've stopped buying EA games now because they keep playing this game with ridiculously priced DLC that's required to actually be competitive or any number of other variations. It basically means that any game you buy from them might seem 'safe' at the moment, but they can (and do) spring the trap at any time.

It's why I haven't bought 1943. Oh yeah, it's only $15 now. But it's from EA. They're gonna figure out some way to jack the customers. Maybe their plan this time is to entice a large audience with a low price at first, and then later they'll start offering 'slightly improved' weapons that you can rent for a 'small' additional fee... like say $5 per week...

See, they may or may not actually do that. But the thing is, it fits perfectly into the pattern of what they have been doing with each of their previous releases for the last couple of years. And so now, as a consumer, I believe that every release EA makes is going to have some sort of new trick attached.

Heck, EA's Battlefield 2142 on the PC installed spyware to watch your movements on the web, and then serve you ads in game based on what web pages you've been looking at. It's possible to combat such a thing on the PC, but what if an EA game installed something like that on your PS3? There aren't any tools to get rid of it. Simply installing an EA game or even a demo from them makes me feel nervous ever since. I feel like I need to research whether it is safe first.

EA's business practices have come to make me expect to be a victim of whatever their next 'get rich quick' scheme is if I play their games. So I stay clear of them now. And I doubt I'm the only one who's been paying attention.

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King James
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 12:42:35 PM

You sound a lil 'noid, bro.

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kreate
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 3:13:41 PM

ur definately not the only one. on top of that,i still play EA games, but their games are way too buggy, i still dont know why i cant log on to EA servers in mercenaries or bad company. making the consumers open their ports with just horrible description on how to do so, as well as poor customer support just annoys me.

some of their trophies are glitched. with no patch update to fix them either. sometimes it works, sometimes it doesnt. dont know why.

Last edited by kreate on 7/28/2009 3:18:58 PM

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Alienange
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 8:53:24 PM

Oh please! Not buying EA games... fine, but I think that's just dumb. Not buying 1943 because of what EA might eventually offer in addition to this great game? Get real. Gamers buy games they like to play. Your argument isn't sound enough to warrant boycotting EA.

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Deleted User
Monday, August 03, 2009 @ 3:21:32 PM

EA can't get it right when they are handed Live in a box I don't even want to know how bad their PSN service is.

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www
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 12:24:12 PM
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Content will forever remain king, DLC is getting annoying.

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Vivi_Gamer
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 12:34:35 PM
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Damn Straight, DLC is just abused by developers.

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Nynja
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 10:56:15 PM

I agree that many (not all) developers are milking DLC for every last drop they can get.

Kudos to all developers (i.e.: Epic for awesome free UT3 content) who don't ram a $100 pole up the consumer's backside.

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PS3addict
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 12:35:50 PM
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I agree with all above except in regards to Rock Band 2.
That games life blood is new content every Thursday. It is pricey, but if you want the tracks, you fork over the cash...

I doubt that they could reduce the price by much more considering overhed and atist kickbacks and royalties, but it does get expensive fast!

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fundando
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 3:03:43 PM

I don't think this article applies to rock band. DLC for rock band is always worth it as long as your actually gonna play those songs.

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fluffer nutter
Wednesday, July 29, 2009 @ 1:44:27 AM

What's irritating about additional song content is that these tracks cost more than if you were to buy the CD quality versions of them. You can easily get a full length album for about half the price of what they charge for the same album. I understand it's game+music content but adding any additional tracks doesn't require much effort, if any. You've all seen those games where you can add any track and it will work with the game.

Last edited by fluffer nutter on 7/29/2009 1:44:47 AM

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King James
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 12:40:38 PM
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I think that new maps on shooters are generally overpriced. I remember feeling robbed after buying the new maps on CoD4. I just bought all 3 DLCs for $12 bucks, but if you ask me; that should be the regular price (not the on-sale price). $2/map seems reasonable but only if they add more stuff than just the maps to the DLC, like trophies.

When I can get a full game for $10-$20 (Stardust HD, R&C: Q4B, Battlefield, Fat Princess etc.), it makes me think twice about some $5-$9 DLC that doesn't add much to my gaming experience (i.e. Costumes, Maps, 1 or 2 bonus missions).

I think, with time, the pricing for these DLCs will balance out and start to make more cents.

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Swim_Irr
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 2:19:40 PM

"make more SENSE"

sorry... Couldn't help it.

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sticklife
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 1:41:18 PM
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This is great to hear, after some stuff capcom had I have trouble trusting some dlc.

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JPBooch
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 1:45:03 PM
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That blurb you referenced from Strategyinformer on Anita King doesn't show much. Stating "Content is King" is a little irrelevant when it comes to DLC. The cost of putting content to DLC is almost non-existant. I'd wager most of the content put on to the store has already been developed for the game and intentionally left out to make more revenue later on.

DLC is here to stay, it's a cash cow for the gaming industry. One that the used game industry can't touch.

Last edited by JPBooch on 7/28/2009 1:46:11 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 2:38:48 PM
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If they are talking DLC before the game itself is even done, then something funny is going on. Otherwise it's their product so they can sell any add-on they want. But holding back something (like the vs mode in RE5) is just criminal.

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Highlander
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 3:28:58 PM

I see no problem with the developer talking about DLC prior to a game launching.

If a game takes 18 months to build, the DLC could require a 3-6 month development cycle. Developers will already have a separate team working on DLC a month or two before the game launches. That way the DLC will land on PSN/XBL while the game is still 'hot' enough to generate sales of the DLC.

So the DLC isn't ready to go at the time the game launches, but because they're already building it, they can talk about it.

Now, if all you download when you buy DLC is a code, then the DLC is already on the disc, which is a complete con.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 3:43:39 PM

Selling unlockables IS criminal. Still, it isn't nice to tease people with things that COULD be on the disc but WON'T be.

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Nynja
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 10:57:54 PM

Sorta like EA and the Need for Speed series? EA does have a knack for selling half games at full price then charging for the rest via overpriced DLC.

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kreate
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 3:17:28 PM
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so... some of u guys actually spent the money to buy these DLC, but are complaining about it.
why not just, not support this idea fully and not buy any DLC?

maybe if we answer with our $$$ the developers will listen?

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ohmikkie
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 4:06:47 PM

i've bought, but never complained. but always in the back of my mind i some stuff could have been included in the original. That includes patch updates that adds features rather than fix bugs. A counter argument to that is that a decent community behind a game drives updates and DLC.

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kreate
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 4:22:41 PM

yea i bought some too. some i bought cuz the description sounded nice, but when i bought it i was disappointed.

EX:Resistance1 maps, i bough it, just to find out nobody ever plays on those maps. so one time i made a public match and played on my own cuz i didnt want my money to go to waste,
the map was cool, but no one cared for it
-it was like I am Legend =(

i still buy the ones i really think its worth it. for some reason, at least for me, 10 dollars doesnt sound so much but when im not getting a physical media, i feel jipped.

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tes37
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 4:16:19 PM
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I don't mind buying DLC, but I wait to read a review about it to see what it contains before buying. I won't buy DLC that I feel is overpriced and there is plenty of that to find on psn. I've purchased stuff that was well worth the money and some stuff that made me feel like an idiot for getting it. So I try to be careful about what I buy from now on.

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JMO_INDY
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 4:57:39 PM
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Look...if I can get something for download at a reasonable price ill buy it, stuff like LBP is fine with me and Rock Band, i dont mind that stuff,amd KZ maps, but stuff like new weapons is kinda stupid, they should have just included them. Dont tread on me.

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Scarecrow
Tuesday, July 28, 2009 @ 7:12:38 PM
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Maybe

We'll see though

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LinTr
Saturday, August 01, 2009 @ 1:29:55 PM
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZSkPH5SkYY

I am stunned DLC made it this far. Getting 'nickle and dimed' vs. a total package game for a decent price seemed a no-contest to me.

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Stratsman
Saturday, August 01, 2009 @ 5:06:33 PM
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I think some DLC is not worth it but some is. The answer is simple, buy it or don't.

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PaiNT_kinG
Monday, August 03, 2009 @ 1:27:25 AM
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its your money,do what you want with it

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