In a world full of fast cars, dangerous characters, and other fast cars, someone's bound to get left behind. In the case of Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, that “someone” is unfortunately you, Mr. John Q PC Gaming Aficionado. (Perhaps they were intimidated by your excessively lengthy name?)
“Hey all, unfortunately we will not be releasing Need for Speed Hot Pursuit PDLC for the PC. While we are certainly committed to providing the best possible game experience and ongoing support for our PC community, (as you have already noted) we have a limited amount of resources that makes it so that we are unable to deliver new content to all platforms,” a poster from developer Criterion wrote on the game's official forums.
Fortunately, he also gave some vague (but nonetheless appreciated) assurance, adding that “on the positive side we do have more updates and content on the way for PC players--look for news very soon.”
After hearing that 2K had quietly held BioShock 2's PC DLC's head underwater until the bubbles stopped, some of you may very well have considered establishing your own undersea utopia – but for PC gamers instead of psychologically unhinged geniuses. Fortunately, that prohibitively expensive plan will no longer be necessary, as the PC gaming community has managed to pull the best possible kind of “would you kindly?” on 2K.
“When we announced that Protector Trials and Minerva’s Den would not be coming out for the PC due to technical and timing issues, we received a lot of feedback (much of it understandably expressing disappointment and anger) about our decision,” 2K’s Elizabeth Tobey in a post on the official 2K forums.
“However, one of the core principles of the 2K Games community is to keep an open dialogue with gamers and listen to what they have to say. We are a company of gamers making awesome experiences for gamers - and given the conversations we've had over the past two weeks, we've decided to go back and finish the PC patch and Protector Trials.”
But those are just the warm-ups. The real main event, of course, is Minerva's Den, which many have hailed as the best piece of single-player DLC to drop this year. Unfortunately, we're not exactly looking at a quick cut-and-paste job with this one.
“When we stopped development on Minerva's Den, it was not in a workable state and needed significantly more dev time to complete. As of now, we are not certain how much longer it would take to complete the project to our standards, but we have reallocated resources to work on completing the project so PC gamers can have this experience in Rapture along with 360 and PS3 owners,” Tobey explained.
Really, that's all we can ask for, and we very much like what we're hearing. 2K, consider this the beginning of a cautiously optimistic friendship.
Our torrid love affair with Fallout 3 and its DLC is a matterofpublicrecord, so this is exactly the type of news we were never hoping to hear. Unfortunately, Bethesda appears to have taken our previous statement literally, so it's elected to hold off on any real details outside of a proverbial smack to PC gamers' hands every time they attempt to reach for some New Vegas DLC.
"We're excited to continue the partnership between Bethesda and Microsoft, and build on the success of the game add-ons released for Fallout 3 on Xbox LIVE," said Bethesda VP of marketing and PR Pete Hines. "Fans will once again be able to continue their experience in the Fallout universe with the add-on packs planned for after the launch of the game."
But what kind of content are we looking at here? And is this merely a period of timed exclusivity? Surely the DLC's not gonna pull a BioShock 2 and skip PCs altogether, right? Unfortunately, we shook Bethesda's magic eight ball and all we got was a non-committal “ask again later.” More details, however, are planned for “the coming weeks,” so here's hoping we get some good news sooner rather than later.
Used-game sales have been a particularly painful thorn in game publishers' sides (and wallets) for years now, so we can certainly understand why THQ would want to dig its fingernails in deep and yank them right out of existence. On the other hand, however, the publisher's plan to ask for even more of gamers' money up front might be the equivalent of poking and prodding the thorn until it goes in even deeper.
The program's making its debut in WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2011, and asks players to hand over a flat sum of $9.99 in exchange for the promise of “select select downloadable content released throughout the life of the game for a one-time anticipated purchase." For now, they're calling it “Fan Axxess,” which caused our spellcheck to run to its room in tears and stop speaking to us.
So, why fork over your dough before the DLC's even finished cooking? Because, in the long run, this method's cheaper for you. For instance, the first DLC pack will go for 560 Microsoft Points (or $7.00) on its own, while the second one will lightly tickle your piggy bank to the tune of 240 Points ($3.00). With Fan Axxess, you'll pay $9.99 up front and get both once they release later this year and next year, respectively, on top of immediate access to all the game's unlockables and -- presumably -- more DLC in the future.
The implication, of course, is that this is only the beginning. Two DLC packs could hardly be called a “life,” so more is probably in the pipeline. A potential problem, however, climbs into the ring and clocks the ref with a steel chair if the game tanks and DLC development stops being worth THQ's while. Fortunately, for now it seems THQ's only sticking Smackdown vs. Raw's giant, steroid sponge of a neck out with this one – probably to gauge players' reactions before deciding whether or not to implement it into other titles.
So, the obvious question: Would you pay for “Fan Axxess” – assuming, of course, that it didn't have a name that made you want to hack THQ in two with an axe? In retrospect, we would've killed for something like this back when DLC-heavy games like Fallout 3 and Borderlands first launched. Of course, we're saying this now – after both games have already fulfilled all their DLC-related promises. What's your take?
BioShock 2 may not have made quite the splash that its predecessor did, but we thought it was just as good – maybe better, in some ways. So it’s with a heavy heart and a dejected, Big-Daddy-like wail that we bring you word that BioShock 2’s DLC won’t be riding the bathysphere over to PC.
“We will also not be offering Protector Trials and Minerva’s Den on the PC in the future – and I want to say that I’m sorry for the disappointment this will cause to PC players out there. As always, if any of these issues change in the future, I will update you guys first, but at this point in time I don’t want to make you wait any longer and these are the most definite answers I have and you guys should deem them final decisions,” a 2K spokesperson wrote on the game’s official message boards.
The worst part? Minerva’s Den has been hailed by many as some of the most interesting single-player DLC of the year. But here we are, stuck out in a cold rain of the same old level and weapon packs while console players are snuggled up nice and warm with BioShock 2’s offerings. It ain’t right, we tell ya! It just ain’t right.
Right now, Left 4 Dead 2 is cheaper than its own strategy guide. Yeah.
In honor of its brand new free DLC campaign – which brings back the original Left 4 Dead cast for a bit more zombie slaughter and a whole lot more one-character-of-your-choice-dying-permanently – Valve’s slashed the prices of both Left 4 Dead 1 and 2 to a mere $6.79 a piece. We don’t know what you did to piss Valve off, every zombie ever, but from where we’re looking, it seems they’ve signed your death warrant. Or re-death warrant. Whatever.
So basically, if you’ve yet to give either Left 4 Dead a try, there’s no better time than now. Free DLC, nearly free games, and more zombies than you can shake a green, disembodied hand at; there are “deals” – like the kind you see on the Home Shopping Network – and then there are real deals. And then there’s the kind where you get to shoot things. Can you guess which one this is?
The title pretty much says it all, but that won’t stop me from using the next few lines to remind everyone how much we still love free Left 4 Dead DLC, especially when our console counterparts are stuck paying for it. The Sacrifice campaign which will launch on all platforms October 5th will be a bit of a departure over past offerings since it will support both the original Left 4 Dead along with the sequel.
This odd combination continues to mix things up by allowing those who play the new campaign using the sequel to finally control the original crew alongside all the new special infected that made Left 4 Dead 2 such a huge improvement.
If you’re eager for more feel free to check out the official web comic or teaser trailer to help tide you over until October 5th.
No one likes loose ends. They’re messy, inconclusive, and – in some cases – can potentially lead to the birth of morally questionable god babies. Fortunately, BioWare’s latest double-helping of downloadable content takes some major loose ends and ties them tight in both Dragon Age: Origins and Mass Effect 2.
First up, Dragon Age is going on a Witch Hunt, which also happens to be the last we’ll see of Ferelden until Dragon Age 2 comes out. Without spoiling too much, let’s just say that a certain witchy woman’s back in the picture, and she’s up to no good. Remember that thing at the end of Origins? This might just have something to do with that.
Meanwhile, over in Mass Effect land, the Shadow Broker – who’s been a professional jerkwad and certified pain in Shepard’s ass since Mass Effect 1 – is finally (hopefully) going down in Lair of the Shadow Broker. If nothing else, though, you’ll definitely get to trash his house and continue your relationship with Liara, so we’re definitely not complaining.
Witch Hunt will run you $7.00, while Lair of the Shadow Broker comes in a bit heavier at $10.00. Both are out now, so what are you waiting for? Outer Space and Fantasy Land need saving from [SPOILERS] and [SPOILERS]! Now go [SPOILERS]!
It's no secret that game publishers aren't particularly fond of Gamestop, which thrives on pre-owned game sales. At the same time, publishers found a way to cash in on Gamestop's used game business, and that's by charging second hand buyers an additional fee to access online content. Some predicted that these DLC codes would cut into Gamestop's lucrative business, but according to U.S. analyst Michael Pachter, that hasn't been the case.
"The company has not seen a negative impact on used software sales from first-use codes or new competitors in the space," Pachter said in his post-financials report on Gamestop. "The company estimates that only 25 percent of used game buyers play online."
It should be noted that most of these DLC codes target multiplayer, and so far, there's only been a handful of titles from EA and THQ that have adopted them. With titles like Madden 2011 on the horizon, however, and other big names to follow, Pacther's assessment might prove a little premature.
You wouldn’t think of the zombie apocalypse as a time for togetherness and kind regard for your fellow man, but that’s exactly what it is. Think about it: between geographical distance and Francis’ vehement disdain for all things, the casts of Left 4 Dead 1 and 2 would’ve never even given each other the time of day – much less formed the kind of deep, tight-knit connections that can only blossom after you’ve scrubbed caked-on Boomer bile off each other’s backs. Left 4 Dead 2’s “The Passing” DLC, which is fresh out of Valve’s assuredly none-too-sanitary oven, is a perfect demonstration of this.
The DLC brings the original Left 4 Dead cast down to Georgia, where they encounter Left 4 Dead 2’s rag-tag band of survivors. In addition to what we’re sure will be all sorts of sitcom laugh track-worthy shenanigans and quips between the newly united parties, The Passing includes three new maps, the fallen survivor zombie class, the golf club melee weapon, a co-op challenge mode, and more. To top it all off, Valve’s rolling out new weekly game modes called “Mutations” -- like “Chainsaw Massacre,” which we think is pretty self-explanatory.
As with all things wonderful and good and from Valve (yeah, a bit redundant, we know) in this universe, The Passing is completely free. Just fire up Steam and the DLC will be waiting to infect your hard drive. Meanwhile, if you don’t own Left 4 Dead 2 yet and our previous chiding failed to convince you, Valve’s sprinkled the game with wallet bait again – this time dropping its price by 33%. So basically, whatever excuses you had last time… will still work, in all honesty. You’re only hurting yourself, though.