Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby At0mic » 30 Mar 12, 11:24 am

Marius wrote:
DoHo_ wrote:What if an entire game was made up of DLC? Weapons, armour/items, MP maps, campaign maps etc and you had to pay for each individual part of a game at DLC prices.


Multiplayer F2P games based on that model are very successful. :P

All a multiplayer F2P game, is, really, is a core game hub surrounded by DLC.

The only multiplayer F2P game that I like is Team Fortress 2. Mainly because you are able to be a useful player on your team without having any non-vanilla items, and you get item drops anyway regardless of whether you're a "premium" player or a free one, you just miss out on the more interesting stuff. The items are balanced with positive and negative attributes so you are generally not overpowered if you've bought extra gear that you would have acquired through time anyway. However, that's as far as my experiences go with computer F2P games. I don't play MMO so I can't add a comparison there, mainly because I don't want to end up finding myself favouring the fake world for the real one. :)
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby caitsith01 » 30 Mar 12, 11:57 am

1. Find something many people clearly hate
2. Write 'controversial' article about how this thing is good
3. ???
4. Profit!
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Marius » 30 Mar 12, 12:10 pm

If people actually 'hated' DLC, then it wouldn't sell by the truckload. :P

And single player games are seen by some in the industry as moving towards being DLC based. See for example this article at pc.mmgm.com: http://pc.mmgn.com/News/Games-like-Skyr ... be-free-to

Quoting some guy called Ben Cousins.

"I believe that single player will be the next to be cracked in terms of freemium monetisation," said Cousins. "And I'm talking about traditional, story-based, scripted, linear and non-linear single player that we see on consoles."

"I am totally 100 per cent confident - I will bet large amounts of money - that we will have, in the next few years, a free-to-play equivalent of Skyrim. A game like Skyrim, where you accrue skills and equipment over time, that you can play for hundreds of hours, is actually one of the easiest games to develop for a free-to-play model. That would be a big hit."

"In the future, I believe free-to-play will be the way that nearly everyone plays games, it will be nearly every genre, and it will be nearly every platform," he added.


This model will effectively make DRM obsolete, because single player games will be tied to accounts like MMOs. Basically what I was saying in the article. It's either DRM, or DLC: Pick which one you prefer. The overwhelming success of both DLC and multiplayer F2P seems to indicate that a large number of people rather the DLC route.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby At0mic » 30 Mar 12, 1:38 pm

Marius wrote:It's either DRM, or DLC: Pick which one you prefer.

Or pick neither and give up gaming. :)

Actually, why must it be mutually exclusive? Amnesia: The Dark Descent doesn't have any DRM if you buy it direct from the developers, and when the Portal ARG was doing its thing they released a free campaign as DLC (via a patch as well as now being integrated into the installer). I'm assuming you're referring to paid DLC as opposed to free DLC, which isn't an issue of course.

Point is you shouldn't need to choose. You should be able to buy a game without DRM and without feeling like you need to keep spending little amount of money in a cumulative sense before you can have the "complete" game. Yes I know it's an ideal world scenario but it's only when people capitulate that things get worse.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Bluefire » 30 Mar 12, 6:44 pm

I have no particular issue with companies going to the DLC model... as long as the origional purchase price is brought down by a similar ammount..

Purchase price for a AAA "full game" currently arround the $50 mark.

DLC "adding" to your core story at $5 each..
5 DLC's to be released within the first 6months
New purchase value for AAA "Partial Game" $25.

Anything else is just a rip off.

You look at Production Cost/Hours(runtime or playtime) of movies vs games
At $50 we are already being overcharged for a AAA "Full Game"
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Fireslide » 30 Mar 12, 6:55 pm

Bluefire wrote:You look at Production Cost/Hours(runtime or playtime) of movies vs games
At $50 we are already being overcharged for a AAA "Full Game"


Yet it you look at entertainment hours per $, games come out on top. So as a consumer, you're still getting a good deal.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Bluefire » 30 Mar 12, 9:49 pm

Average AAA movie runtime >2hrs
Average AAA game playtime >6hrs
Movie cost $12
Game cost $50
You pay MORE per hour for games.
Games cost LESS to make.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Marius » 31 Mar 12, 4:00 am

I'm not entirely sure what AAA games you are playing that are only around 6 hours long. I spent over 100 hours in Skyrim, 90 hours in Dragon Age 2. Civilization 5 51 hours.

One of the big reasons I game and don't go see movies is exactly the reason you try to argue against... it costs about $20-$25 to see a 2 hour movie, when you take into account the cost of adult tickets and transport. Whereas I can buy a game like Skyrim for $60 and the cost per hour is about 50 cents.

At0mic wrote:Point is you shouldn't need to choose. You should be able to buy a game without DRM and without feeling like you need to keep spending little amount of money in a cumulative sense before you can have the "complete" game. Yes I know it's an ideal world scenario but it's only when people capitulate that things get worse.

Problem is that the forces pushing for DRM are too strong for it to be just abandoned. The only way that DRM will be abandoned is with a more profitable model.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby TRB » 31 Mar 12, 5:56 am

Marius wrote:Problem is that the forces pushing for DRM are too strong for it to be just abandoned. The only way that DRM will be abandoned is with a more profitable model.



Lets be honest, DRM isn't profitable for the game company,its only making profit for the DRM company.
As anyone with even a little experience knows, DRM works for hours, not even days in most cases.
Its like safes and bank vaults, the security is measured in the minutes it takes to crack that safe open.

So automatically not using DRM is more profitable for the game company, it saves them time [money] in implementation and licensing fees and then indirectly makes them money by endearing them more to the fan base.

a few studios have realised this.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby caitsith01 » 31 Mar 12, 12:27 pm

Fireslide wrote:
Bluefire wrote:You look at Production Cost/Hours(runtime or playtime) of movies vs games
At $50 we are already being overcharged for a AAA "Full Game"


Yet it you look at entertainment hours per $, games come out on top. So as a consumer, you're still getting a good deal.

But the analogy is terrible.

For starters, games are entertaining if you put effort in. Movies are more like a rollercoaster, you sit back and you're entertained.

Second, what about books? I just finished a book that would have taken me several hundred hours to read. It was amazing. It cost about $30. So by your logic, games are terrible value because they are much more expensive per hour than a very entertaining book.

Or what about a good album - I have albums I must have listened to a thousand times, which cost me $20.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby caitsith01 » 31 Mar 12, 12:30 pm

Marius wrote:I'm not entirely sure what AAA games you are playing that are only around 6 hours long. I spent over 100 hours in Skyrim, 90 hours in Dragon Age 2. Civilization 5 51 hours.

Way to pick two very open ended games and a third which is unusually long - you know perfectly well game companies are flogging games for $80-100 in Australia which have feeble amounts of single player gameplay.

This whole debate is fairly silly - there will always be games with DLC and DRM, and there will always be games companies who respect their audience and don't try to "monetize" everything (christ I hate that word). Some of us will choose to give our money exclusively to the latter, so there will be a market for them.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Marius » 31 Mar 12, 12:41 pm

caitsith01 wrote:Way to pick two very open ended games and a third which is unusually long - you know perfectly well game companies are flogging games for $80-100 in Australia which have feeble amounts of single player gameplay.

This whole debate is fairly silly - there will always be games with DLC and DRM, and there will always be games companies who respect their audience and don't try to "monetize" everything (christ I hate that word). Some of us will choose to give our money exclusively to the latter, so there will be a market for them.


And it's everyone's choice to buy them or not. Your paragraphs seem contradictory. On one hand you argue that games aren't value for money because there are short games on the market, on the other you say DLC and DRM is a non-issue because consumers can pick and choose. :P

The debate is bigger than games, though. Copyright legislation like SOPA will always be around as long as companies refuse to adapt to the online market. It essentially exists to turn digital products into physical products, and that's a key function of DRM as well.

What I'm basically saying is that online products should be online products, not physical ones. And tbh, DLC, as well as F2P models, have a huge part to play in that. Those models are far more suited to the online market than boxed games are.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Xavios » 31 Mar 12, 4:47 pm

Marius wrote:What I'm basically saying is that online products should be online products, not physical ones. And tbh, DLC, as well as F2P models, have a huge part to play in that. Those models are far more suited to the online market than boxed games are.


Slightly apprehensive "hear hear".

Carefully skirting the arguments already going on... I was wondering what your thoughts on the sudden interest in crowd sourcing funding for entertainment products in relation to DLC would be? Many people are (probably a little too enthusiastically and without regard to this little thing called reality) predicting the decline in the power publishers wield over games. If publishers were to lose the clout they have in the industry, would there be enough support for DLC to continue? Or would it change and flourish? You seem to think that DLC, in one form or another, alongside the F2P model will be the future of digitally distributed gaming (correct me if I'm wrong). As a person with lawyer magic and a vested interest in the industry, I just want to know how you think operations such as Kickstarter will influence this.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby TRB » 31 Mar 12, 4:52 pm

Marius wrote:I'm not entirely sure what AAA games you are playing that are only around 6 hours long. I spent over 100 hours in Skyrim, 90 hours in Dragon Age 2. Civilization 5 51 hours.



just FYI, how long YOU spent on skyrim, for example, is irrelevant.
It can and has been completed in 2 hours 16 mins, iirc.

someone *could* spend 100 hours watching a movie, if they found it good enough. [some people would claim that watching titanic felt like 100 hours...]

I could say I only played DA2 for 4 hours before getting so bored I was nodding off while playing, which makes it bad value, particularly at AU$ retail prices, no?

ME3 takes me about 30 or so hours if I do all the side quests, but I hear other people have done it in around 6 hours on insanity mode.
That wouldn't really be great value at $60 compared to a movie, no?

just saying.
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Re: Legal Opinion: Why DLC is the Future of Gaming

Unread postby Marius » 1 Apr 12, 5:49 am

TRB wrote:just FYI, how long YOU spent on skyrim, for example, is irrelevant.
It can and has been completed in 2 hours 16 mins, iirc.

someone *could* spend 100 hours watching a movie, if they found it good enough. [some people would claim that watching titanic felt like 100 hours...]

I could say I only played DA2 for 4 hours before getting so bored I was nodding off while playing, which makes it bad value, particularly at AU$ retail prices, no?

ME3 takes me about 30 or so hours if I do all the side quests, but I hear other people have done it in around 6 hours on insanity mode.
That wouldn't really be great value at $60 compared to a movie, no?


Value is entirely relative to the person, so the only appropriate statement is how long someone personally spends on a game.

The statement I was replying to was saying that movies are intrinsically better value than games. But if everyone values different things, how can that be true? My response was just to say that games can be much better value than movies.

To bring this back to DLC... If someone is willing to spend money on DLC and doesn't feel ripped off afterwards, than it is good value. Obviously, the $10 I spent on Leliana's Song was very good value, for me.

Xavios wrote:I just want to know how you think operations such as Kickstarter will influence this.


Kickstarter is OK but it will always remain a niche thing because publishers have a lot more than just development budgets, like marketing and distribution networks. I'm not sure on what Kickstarter will do in regards to F2P and DLC because we've not got that far yet... and I honestly haven't thought about it.
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