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BioWare Explains Mass Effect 3 Day One DLC

A post to the BioWare Social Network addresses reaction to the recent leak of details on From Ashes, a day-one DLC pack for Mass Effect 3. With some suggesting a boycott over the news (thanks Jason via PCWorld), BioWare's Mike Gamble wants it understood that this content was developed after the game:

As most of you know, yesterday there was a leak that revealed the upcoming DLC “ME3:From Ashes” on the Xbox LIVE Marketplace. This leak took place before we were prepared to make an announcement about the details of that pack (slated for this Friday). There has been a lot of discussion about the DLC offering but we wanted to clarify a few things...

- “From Ashes” includes the Prothean squad mate, an adventure on Eden Prime, a new weapon, and an alternate appearance for every squad mate. Note that these alternate appearances are in addition to the ones already advertised in the CE.

- The Collectors Edition has been advertised from the beginning as containing a bonus character/mission, but we were not at liberty to provide the details. The Prothean is optional content that is certainly designed to appeal to long-time fans, which is why he is part of the CE offering (the version many fans would be likely to purchase). Mass Effect 3 is a complete – and a huge game - right out of the box.

- The content in “From Ashes” was developed by a separate team (after the core game was finished) and not completed until well after the main game went into certification.

- The Collectors Edition has been sold out in most places for some time now, and is becoming very hard to find (many players prefer not to purchase the digital version). As such, we wanted to make this content available so that SE buyers could also incorporate the Prothean into their game.

We’ll be releasing some images and video about this pack in the coming days.

As always, we are extremely thankful for all of your support. We pulled out all of the stops to make Mass Effect 3 the best game ever, and we can't wait for you all to experience it.

View
51. Re: BioWare Explains Mass Effect 3 Day One DLC Feb 24, 2012, 14:02 Ruffiana
 
Panickd wrote on Feb 24, 2012, 13:43:
The DLC situation is so completely out of hand these days. I can understand them making some little bullshit DLC pack to reward people for buying a retail copy of the game instead of buying it used but when you're getting paid $60 for the game and you expect players to put up with shelling out more for some day 1 DLC you're well and truly fucked in your greedy little head. There need to be rules put in place for DLC content and rule 1 should be, "Don't sell me DLC on day 1 and if you do don't try and feed me some line of bullshit about how it was completed after the game before the game itself is even on sale!"

Rule 2: "No DLC that splits up the MP community." Selling a map pack that only 10% of your players buy makes developers and publishers look like greedy asshats. Doubly so when the maps are remakes of the same MP maps from a previous game in the franchise. Either put the MP stuff in the game to begin with or give it away for free!

And Rule 3: When all the DLC you put out for a game ends up costing more than the game itself you have gone too far and it's time to re-evaluate the methods you use to decide what to cut out of the game so you can sell it to me later.

I can only agree with rule 2. The first is just a fundamental misunderstanding about how the development process works and the third is just whinging about how expensive options for your entertainment luxuries are. ME1 and ME2 were far from light on content out of the box. I see no reason to suspect that the 3rd installment won't have plenty of gameplay as well.

Fact is developing for consoles adds a huge window of time when you are "done" with a game before it's ever stamped, put in a box, and thrown up on a shelf to be sold. You CANNOT continue to add new content to a game during that time. All you can do is fix bugs with things that are there and make any changes needed to pass TCR. That's it. Anything new restarts the process from scratch.

The lion's share of that work is on the programmers' shoulders. Most of your content creators, your artists, designers, writers, etc. have very little to do during this time. It's a great time to take some of the content that was in development and got cut because of time constraints and finish it up. Or even create new content. By this point you have a team that's just finished making the game. The tools are as solid as they're going to be, the processes and pipelines have been fine-tuned, and it's the content can be created [i]very[/i] quickly.

It's quite possible that content that would never have been in the game can made from scratch during the TCR process. It’s very likely that content cut earlier in the process could be picked back up and finished. The data for that content can even be put on to the same disc as the finished game. Because it's not an integrated part of the game and because it requires an online activation of some sort it can be assumed than any major issues with the extra content can be resolved with a patch. You cannot make that assumption with the core game. What's on the disc has to work.
 
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>> 51. Feb 24, 14:02  Re: BioWare Explains Mass Effect 3 Day One DLC Ruffiana
  56. Feb 24, 14:34   Re: BioWare Explains Mass Effect 3 Day One DLC Panickd
  59. Feb 24, 14:48    Re: BioWare Explains Mass Effect 3 Day One DLC Ruffiana
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