DLC = Illegal?

By Marx0r, 8 years ago
So, way back when, gamerscore was cut and defined, right? You got a retail game and it offered about 1000 points for you to earn. Arcades offered 200. Some games were impossible to complete and some were child's play, but that's okay. Shortly after, Microsoft came out with set rules that stated all retail games must have an available 1000 points. Ubisoft went back and put G.R.A.W. up to a round but still stupidly impossible 1000, but other companies like EA decided to never patch their games up, and to come out with travesties like Tiger Woods 06, which had something like 250 glitched points out of the box. But whatever, they're EA, they can even have (and eventually shut down) their own servers, and do whatever they want because they make Madden, the best-selling yearly franchise on the 360.

That worked pretty well for a while, as EA and 2k continued to make asses out of themselves by releasing full-budget games with glitched achievements they never bothered to patch, as well as the odd shovelware like Rayman or Smash TV. Then, Bethesda thought it would be a great idea to add extra achievements onto DLC for its game Oblivion. Great idea, as the DLC pack, Shivering Isles, was good, lengthy, and well worth the $30 it cost to download. But wait, doesn't that kind of mess with people who care about completing every game they play? In theory, yes, but these are fair deals and a fun experience.

So games like Gears joined in with 6 new solid maps and a decent set of achievements mirroring its new online gametype. Cool. The Godfather brought its original 835 up to 1250 with a mission mode. Nice. Crackdown brought its 900 up to 1250 with more vehicles, more sidemissions, and more weapons. Awesome. Stranglehold came out with a bunch of maps ripped right off of single-player for its tacked-on and horribly unbalanced multiplayer, and charged 20 bucks for it. Wait, what? Okay, a good system had its first little hiccup, but that's okay because, hey, the 250 extra points for that are REALLY easy.

So, we continue for a while and some weirder stuff starts to happen. Ninja Gaiden II comes out with DLC not only a few weeks after release, but with a mode that's way harder than the original 1000. But anyone who's going to 1000 NGII is a masochistic and extremely talented freak, so they'll enjoy the extra 250. Beautiful Katamari is released with the DLC that's encoded on the disc and the 20-dollar download just unlocks it. Okay, I guess, because the game was only $40 when it was released. Phantasy Star Universe comes out with 250 extra points, but it took almost 2 years for one of the achievements to be attainable. Naturo comes out with glitched ones that the developers never fix. Hellboy is released with unattainable achievements and the promise of DLC, but it's been almost two years now and nothing. Okay, shit's starting to go down, but you could always wait for a game to get its 250 points and then it'd be safe to play, right?

Wrong. Halo 3 gets updated with 750 points, some of which remain unattainable for a year. Then Mirror's Edge gets updated with 250 points that are harder than the original 1000 AND require you to go back to the original game. Fifa 09 gets DLC. Wait, that's a yearly franchise. That can't be good. Transformers 2, a movie cash-in, gets DLC. Then comes Gears of War 2. It forced players to buy maps that were probably ready before the game's release, and then gets tacked with a multiplayer achievement that takes about 1000 hours without boosting. Then, they do absolutely nothing to stop the huge uprising of cheaters. Even on TA, there are over 1000 tracked gamers with the Veteran Gear achievement, and an overwhelming majority of them are cheaters.

Eventually, Microsoft releases a statement with the official new achievement rules. 1750 is now possible for a retail game, as long as a maximum of 250 points are released per quarter. Okay, fine. They may be ridiculous rules, but at least they're now set in stone. Right?

Lips promptly violates the "1000 per retail disc" rule that was in said statement. (For more: Lips: A Great Series Gone Bad) Then Dawn of War II comes out with an expansion pack that adds a FULL THOUSAND to the game, making it the first 2000-point game. Mass Effect 2 gets 2 DLC 'packs', both with one 15-point achievement, that cost a total of $22. If it continues at this rate to the 1750 it's entitled to, the 750 DLC points will cost $550. Left 4 Dead 2 gets DLC that requires play on 6 different weeks, screwing over anyone that may have rented it.

Think about this from the point of view of someone who completes all of their games, like me or thousands of other people. I buy a game with the intent of completing it, understanding that it takes a set amount of time and effort to complete, and assuming that that single purchase will be all I need to do so. Months or even weeks later, DLC comes out, forcing me to spend more time and money to get what I originally bought, that is, a completion.

From my point of view, this is like if I bought a phone, then 6 months later, the manufacturer takes away my 8 button and forces me to spend another $20 to get it back. I understand I'm in the minority here, but this is unfair business practice. I've spent thousands of dollars on Microsoft products, yet they're still willing to break their own rules to get a few bucks out of DLC commission.