I just reblogged the E3 2012 trailer for Persona 4 Arena, but here is the official email from the ATLUS FAITHFUL newsletter confirming dual audio.

Back in March I posted about rumors of a possible Elder Scrolls MMO to be announced in May. Well, it’s May now, and in fact the rumors were true: Bethesda is releasing it sometime in 2013. It will be developed by ZeniMax Online Studios.

The game will take place far before Skyrim—1000 years or so—during a time in which the world is ravaged by the prince Molag Bal. It will feature PvP combat and three player factions.

A better-formatted post can be found here at the main blog.

I had the opportunity recently to see The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses at the Orpheum   Theatre in Phoenix, Arizona. It was certainly worth going to; the music was excellent as always, the symphony was flawless, and the accompanying video made it a visual treat as well. Read on for the full account…

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It seems that someone dissatisfied with Mass Effect 3’s ending filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and the Better Business Bureau about the ending, claiming false advertisement.

To be honest, I haven’t followed a lot of the PR about ME3, but as an outsider looking in, this seems like a case of someone thinking they’re so entitled to an ending they want that they file an official complaint. 

What do you guys think? Reblog this post or reply to it and let me know! However, please try and keep your replies spoiler-free.

A better-formatted version of this on the main blog can be found here.

Within the month of March, three different Silent Hill titles will be released: for the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360, an HD rerelease of the second and third games titled Silent Hill HD Collection, as well as a brand-new title, Silent Hill: Downpour; for the Playstation Vita, a dungeon-crawling horror-themed spinoff entitled Silent Hill: Book of Memories.

The Silent Hill: Book of Memories cover. Courtesy of the Silent Hill Wiki.

Book of Memories is a completely different beast from the “traditional” Silent Hill game. Horror does not seem to be an emphasis. The game is built around multiplayer and combat; in fact, Book of Memories is the first time multiplayer has ever been in a Silent Hill title.

Now, this game is a spinoff. It has nothing to do with the main series of games; Silent Hill: Downpour does not have multiplayer elements nor a sudden dearth of story. I’d expect that later games in the series, even if they integrate multiplayer, will still emphasize plot and atmosphere above all else.

However, from the looks of it, one would think that the creative mind behind Book of Memories had kidnapped and murdered all of the general Silent Hill fanbase’s children. While I can’t say I’m a huge fan of Jim Sterling, he wrote a quite interesting article on Destructoid, quoting some fan reactions from YouTube about the game:

"But..But what about the old silent hill the good one!! We love horror not fucking shit! Please make another game but on something scary, that will make silent hill interesting again! :("
—- 
 ”THEY DO NOT LEARN THEY DO NOT LEARN. And the worst part is that I just know this is going to sell somehow. Truly horrifying.
Look, if you’re going to desecrate SH’s atmosphere then you might as well give me pornographic material with the nurses and “the guy with a gigantic knife” since you love them so much.”

I’ll quote a user that commented on Sterling’s article, “Tristix”, as a response:

"If this game turns out badly, it will of course mean that Silent Hill 2 suddenly becomes a terrible game and your fond memories are all lies, because that’s how it works."

 Read on for more commentary.

My point in quoting “Tristix” is that gamers seem to take things far too seriously. I want gaming to be my career. I admire the effort put into making games, and I love when games are fun, have excellent stories, or both. Whether it’s straightforward as, for instance, Persona 3 or Final Fantasy X were, or done behind layers of symbolism like Silent Hill 2 or Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, gaming is something I hold dear to me.

Even then, I can’t help but shake my head at some of the things I see.

Apparently this line and its delivery is vital to the well-being of the entire universe. Picture from the Silent Hill Wiki.

Recently, Gamespot posted a clip of the new voices for Silent Hill 3 in the HD Collection. The original voices are included in Silent Hill 2, but for reasons Konami has not completely disclosed, they were not feasible for 3.

Personally, I liked the voices. I thought they were better-acted than the original game’s, and I feel that both and 3's acting was a little unnatural and awkward-sounding. Some people liked them, and that's not a problem; I can disagree with the notion that awkward acting makes the game feel more surreal. Disliking something isn't a problem, but again, let's look at some of the comments on the video:

"Tomm Hullet is pure EVIL… this is an EPIC FAIL! Silent Hill is the best horror game evah and it’s the only game that will change its own voice overs… i mean for Christ’s sake WTF peolpe?!
Heather VA in this vid is trying so hard to impersonate the original VA and sounds much older… Heather has 17 years in SH3… and Douglas? Well it’s bullcrap!
Why change the voices? WHY??????”
—-
"Wow, Douglas sounds completely wrong. Capcom, Namco, Nintendo, Konami. Why do they all fail so much? Especially Capcom though, scum of the earth."
—-
"….i hate you konami! seiously…how could they destroy sh2 and 3 (which were the best sh games imo) with those terribel new voices??? isn’t it retarted enough to only release new shitty sh games since team silent split up? well….i gave sh up after playing 3 hours of homecomming (this action oriented piece of shit) and i will allways remember silent hill how it was back in the good old "team silent"-days!"  

As a reply to someone else, presumably defending the new voices:

"Listen maggot,you’re probably 10 years old and never actually played any SH, so fuck off. I’m fan of the series, you are not, so you don’t give a damn about SH… I wonder what would you say if your favorite game got VO changed? I have all the originals and will never buy this crap… The community is bad because of the untalented guys like Tomm and stupid little emos like yoursefl who are brainwashed and don’t think too much…Go suck Tomm Hullet’s dick or something…"

I think that’s enough quoting for now.

Now, I can understand disliking something. I really, really can. If someone dislikes Book of MemoriesHD CollectionDownpour—which had its own debacle with fans claiming the use of KoRn for the theme song would “devalue” the entirety of the series—or even Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, which has similar vitriol surrounding it, then it is as simple as this: don’t buy it. Voice your opinions, yes, but I fail to understand why some gamers seem to think it is completely acceptable to use hyperbole to the point of claiming a game creator is evil for changing something up when the original games are still intact.

Does this look like someone who deserves death threats? Tomm Hulett, from the Silent Hill Wiki.


It is fine to voice your dislike of something. “I don’t like the new voices; I feel Heather’s sounds too old.” “I’m not interested in Operation Raccoon City because I don’t like shooters and I want a horror game.” “Book of Memoriesseems like an odd fit for Silent Hill and I’d rather have something atmospheric than something action-oriented.” Opinions expressed in that way—that is, rationally—give people much more credibility, and avoid insults to boot. Tomm Hulett, the producer for Downpour and Book of Memories even had death threats sent to him for various reasons regarding the Silent Hill franchise.

This isn’t something that’s confined to just one or two series, either. A trailer for Final Fantasy XIII-2 had comments ranging from positive to the following:

"I hate the fact that since noel & sarah are the only playable humans, they need DLC for the others who only had cameo appearances because writers couldnt put ppl like sazah in for wat ever lame excuse. the writers r lazy and stupid thats what they are. they didnt conclude it, and now their saying oops here you go theres a dlc.
BULL FUCKING SHIT. SE fuck u & ur stupid games. fuck,what happened SE. This game is also a bore fest.
sigh”

An article on Gamesradar about the strengths and weaknesses of the Nintendo 3DS versus the Playstation Vita got comments such as:

 ”Only a parent with a child or an adult with nostalgia would choose a 3DS over a Vita.”
—-
Chosing between Vita and 3DS is akin to chosing to have brain surgery through your ear or through your nose. Neither one is something good and ultimately will just be a pain.
[…]
Please don’t try to fool people. StreetPass is a failed POS idea. I feel sorry for anyone who actually tries to even use it. You think that there is ANY sort of positive to walking around and suddenly your 3DS notices another one around?! No. Grow up.
And last but not least, quit pimping out any online connectivity. It’s one of the cancers of the industry and is not something people should see as a positive. It’s just adds bloat and price to the system while offering exactly 0% of real functionality.
Ultimately, though, while I am definitely not going to be using either system (for the massive list of failures both of them have, as I noted above), the Vita wins hands-down based on not having that stupid 3D crap.”

 Online connectivity is one of the “cancers of the industry”? Even the more tame comments insult people on the basis of simply liking one console above another.

Let’s be rational, people. Instead of insisting “x game is the worst game ever and if you like it you are WRONG”, speak out about what you dislike. Talk about the reasons why, talk about what you expect from games, what you hope from them, what you like about them. But can we please do it without insulting others, making death threats, or claiming that a change to a video game ruined one’s life?

Please see the link above for a properly-formatted post.

Demonic Pokemon. Demonic eBay. Deceptively deep and devilishly hard.


Overclocked’s cover. Image from NintendoLife.

Devil Survivor Overclocked is not a sequel to 2009’s Devil Survivor. It is not a remake. It is not a traditional RPG, nor is it a DS game. What it is is an enhanced port of the original game to the Nintendo 3DS, using the same graphical style and plot while adding multiple elements, the most notable being full voice-acting and a playable “8th Day” epilogue to multiple endings.

Overclocked takes place in modern-day Tokyo, on a perfectly ordinary day. The unnamed teenage protagonist and his friends are contacted by his cousin Naoya, asking to meet up. When they do, they are given Communication Players (COMPs for short), multimedia devices shaped like 3DSs. However; theirs are altered: on the protagonists’ COMPs is a “Demon Summoning Program”. From there, the protagonists are caught up in a week-long lockdown of Tokyo, fighting demons, humans, and more to survive and find a way out of the lockdown.

The plot is excellent. Don’t let the brightly-coloured anime aesthetics fool you: Overclocked is anything but cheerful. Humans’ responses to crises are examined here, from those who gather in shelter to those who take advantage of chaos to those who panic and attack indiscriminately. The game eventually brings in religious elements, and while they aren’t preachy—it does not promote religion—easily-offended players may want to stay away.

The characters’ reactions to the Tokyo Lockdown are realistic, and the game handles humans in crisis quite well. Image from NintendoLife.

Spoiling as little as possible, I will say that the presentation of the games’ ending was somewhat disappointing. The multiple endings are determined by the characters you side with; the route I took was Naoya’s. Up through the final boss, the plot was utterly fascinating, a great study of humans in crisis and moral dilemmas. Once I beat the first seven days, however, I could not help but feel let down due to Atlus, the game’s developers, resorting to an exposition dump, which was rather unusual for them. Don’t let this turn you away from the game, though; the rest of it’s a wild ride. The 8th Day for Naoya’s route alleviated some of my disappointment, and though I haven’t played through it, I’ve read that the one for Yuzu’s route is also excellent.

The characters range from annoying to rather grounded, and while I can’t say that any of them felt like my friends by the end of the game, I didn’t particularly dislike any of them. Each of them bring something new to the table, from the protagonist’s mysterious cousin Naoya to the cosplay fanatic Midori to the amateur hacker Atsuro. Every character in Overclocked has something at stake besides their own lives, and none of them feel extraneous.

Overclocked features voice acting for every line in the game, so much so that Atlus was worried they wouldn’t be able to fit the game on the card. It ranges from mediocre to excellent, but overall it really brings more life to the characters and I’m glad they put it in. One character in particular is especially grating, although her personality is supposed to be. Demons are not voiced, however; when their speech is shown on-screen, it is accompanied by various sound effects, from chuckles to groans to roars.

The music in Overclocked generally tends toward rock-styled tracks, the game’s main combat theme a frenetic cacophony of guitar chords. The majority of the game’s music is less uptempo, and unfortunately, most of it is rather unmemorable. It suits the game, but there was nothing I would listen to outside of playing, unlike other games in the franchise.

The game’s graphics tend to err on the more simplistic side. Character portraits are expressive, but their sprites in events are small and undetailed, though not ugly by any means. Demons during battle are not animated beyond a slight shake when hit, which makes for some dull-looking combat; the system is enjoyable enough to make up for it, but it’s still a slight disappointment. 3D is used exclusively in the game’s intro and fusion screens, so if you’re looking for abundant three-dimensional graphics, Overclocked is not your game.

Battles take place on the lower screen, with the top reserved for demon stats. Image from TinyCartridge.

The game progresses in 30-minute increments through a menu; any plot-related event takes up time, although there are areas in which one can freely battle to grind for macca—the game’s currency—or experience. Multiple events are available at any given moment, and choosing to interact with one character over another could cause players to allow another character’s death. The game lends itself well to multiple playthroughs because of this, and for those who are only interested in seeing the different endings, Overclocked has three save slots. Keep in mind, however, that choices during the game may affect which endings are available.

The combat is a hybrid of strategy RPGs and traditional turn-based ones. Players start each battle by choosing their teams and selecting positions for each character, then proceed to move in turns around a grid-based battlefield. When the option to attack an enemy is selected, the perspective shifts into a first-person turn-based battle, similar to Dragon Quest. Exploiting an enemy’s weakness will give the player an “Extra Turn”, which allows them a second action after the initial skirmish.

Enemy teams generally consist of three units: two demons and a Demon Tamer, or just three demons. Defeating all three enemies in one team nets players the most experience, though killing just the central enemy removes the team from the map and gives that character half the experience of the entire team.

Players can buy and fuse a wide variety of demons. Image from TinyCartridge.

Enemy teams are not the only ones that have more than one character: every player-controlled team has two demons and one human leader. Demos can be gained through the Demon Auction—think demonic eBay—or through Demon Fusion, which is rather self-explanatory: two demons can be fused together to make a new, generally stronger demon. Upon doing so, players can determine which skills of its parents a demon can inherit, including passive skills to change resistances or increase damage, as well as active skills: spells and physical attacks. Different demons have different innate resistances to the types of attacks in Overclocked, and each demon race has its own special ability, whether it is to move across the map faster, ignore any battlefield obstacles, or heal others.

The game is surprisingly deep when it comes to gameplay. Fusing demons together to create new ones seems rather straightforward, as does the hybrid strategy/turn-based gameplay, but bring a demon with the wrong resistances or abilities and the entire battle can go south. Strategy is essential in Overclocked, and it makes for quite the hard game. If a challenge scares you, this game might be something to avoid although the majority of the story is fantastic; I played it on Easy mode, myself, after getting stuck in the original Devil Survivor, and I still had a hard time in multiple fights. It provides a great sense of accomplishment when one finishes a particularly tough battle, but some may think the difficulty is a little too much.

Devil Survivor Overclocked is definitely a game I’d recommend to RPG fans, even if they dislike strategy RPGs. The story is excellent, the gameplay challenging but rewarding, and the voice acting lends quite a bit to the characters. With multiple endings, several with playable epilogues, the game will last you quite a while. A single playthrough on Naoya’s route, after the 8th Day denouement, took me approximately 36 hours.

Good

-Engaging plot that explores human morality and beliefs

-Challenging gameplay that requires lots of strategy

-8th Day and voice acting add quite a bit for players of the original

Bad

-Presentation of the ending is a slight let-down

-Combat can be too challenging at times

-Voice acting is hit-or-miss

Play it if: you enjoyed the original Devil Survivor and want to hear characters’ voices and get a bit more to the story, or if you’re a fan of RPGs with heavier plots.

Overclocked belongs to the overarching Shin Megami Tensei franchise; in North America, the game is officially titled Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked, but the “Shin Megami Tensei” title has been omitted from this review for brevity.


The game was completed on Easy mode taking Naoya’s route through the 8th Day.

For better formatting, please visit the main blog by clicking the link above.

Recently, a French gaming blog called Gamesblog.fr was blacklisted by Activision after reporting on Amazon’s leak of the possible next Call of Duty game: Call of Duty: Black Ops 2. Gamesblog broke no non-disclosure agreements, nor did they break any embargos or laws. They simply reported on a fact: Amazon put up a listing for Black Ops 2.

I’m really disappointed in Activision, and I feel that they blew this completely out of proportion. Punishing someone for reporting on something that will hardly harm your franchise, if at all, is ridiculous in my mind.

However, what I find even more disheartening are some of the comments on Kotaku’s article. Not only are some people defending Activision, saying that Gamesblog should have been gentlemen and taken down the article when asked—which would violate journalistic integrity—and, even worse, people claiming that gaming journalism should never be considered as serious journalism because it’s all about “toys”. I find it quite odd that these commenters say things like this on a site that bills itself as a legitimate news website.

Call of Duty: Black Ops cover. Picture from Wikipedia.

I’ll be kind and not directly quote or screenshot the comments I’ve seen, but looking at the Kotaku coverage of this incident, I personally find it hard to do so.

I recognize that not all gaming writers are part of the Society of Professional Journalists. I’d even go so far to say that most of them aren’t; I know I’m certainly not.

But many organizations still strive for integrity and want to be taken seriously. Gamesblog did just that, and I’ve seen people say they shouldn’t have bothered, that they should have caved into Activision, because gaming journalism isn’t worth it because they’re solely entertainment.

Video games may be entertainment, but that does not mean that they’re not legitimate things to study or write about. The industry is huge, and many people care about it; I’ve seen forum posts about multiple games talking about how some of them made players cry, how they moved them, how they affected their lives. Whether it’s something as cerebral as Silent Hill or as straightforward as Persona 4, games indeed affect people, and they merit journalism because of it.

Entire websites, such as The Escapist, pride themselves on insightful commentary about gamer culture, and do more than simply advertise the newest products, though they do touch upon those. According to the aforementioned mindset, though, sites like those aren’t legitimate because they cover “toys”.

Insisting gaming journalism should never be legitimatized ignores all the aspects of gaming besides just the fact that they are made for entertainment. That train of thought ignores the fact that games have affected people, myself included. It disrespects the effort that people put into each game, all the music and art and programming. Taking that kind of attitude even sets back gaming journalism, whether it comes from a reader or writer.

Video games are more than just the cost of purchasing them. They’re more than just “toys” to many people, and they’re more than just strings of code created to amuse players. Video games are a medium through which developers tell stories, whether they’re well-done or not.

Gaming journalism covers this medium. It can be as simple as reporting on an announcement made by Square-Enix, or as complex as a metaphor of music and lyrics as gameplay and story, or as critical as analyzing male privilege in games, or even as deep as analyzing human nature in horror games.

Let’s strive to allow gaming journalism to become legitimate. Hold gaming sites to a high standard, and praise those organizations that stick to their guns even in the face of developer anger.

Let’s not belittle it.

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I had the opportunity today to stop by a GameStop, and they had a Playstation Vita demo unit on display. From far away, it looked just like a PSP, but when I got closer, I was struck by howbig the handheld is.

The Playstation Vita. Picture from Playstation Blog.

It was actually a little off-putting. It may have been the unit that GameStop uses to ensure the Vita isn’t stolen but can still be held—it looked to be fastened along the bottom of the Vita and nowhere else—but man, it just looked bulky. Slick, yes, but rather bulky. I put it alongside my thigh to see how it would fit in my pocket, and it didn’t seem very… well, portable.

The screen is beautiful. It’s definitely the majority of the handheld’s size, but it is worth it: crystal-clear and the touch controls are responsive.

The power and volume buttons are along the top of the unit, and I don’t remember if there was anything else on there; I’d have to get another look. The Playstation menu button is located, as you can see in the picture, below the left analogue stick; the start and select buttons are below the right. I’m not a huge fan of the location for the select and start buttons, and they seemed a little hard to click because of the way they’re set, but overall the layout is okay. The face buttons and D-pad feel higher up than on a Playstation 3 controller, but I think that just needs a little getting used to.

The analogue sticks feel quite strange to me. They’re actual analogue sticks instead of the slide-pad that the Nintendo 3DS has, and they work wonderfully, but they feel a little looser than, say, the Xbox 360 or the PS3. Again, it’s probably something I just needed to get used to. However, I disliked the D-pad; it felt really loose, like it would pop up or be unresponsive.

The touchpad on the back was different than I expected; from the look of it on promotional photos, I expected it to be smooth yet matte, but instead it felt the same as touching the front of the device. I tested it out a little bit on Modnation Racers: Road Trip's track-building mode—you can build terrain with it—but it didn't seem to respond well. At first, it appeared to change what I did depending on the pressure I put on it, but I had trouble getting it to make mountains after the first one I put. Of course, it could just be because it's a demo unit that everyone can use rather than a personal console, so I'll have to reserve judgement until I'm able to get my own.

Gravity Rush cover. Picture from Wikipedia.

I tried three games while I was there; I didn’t take a long time to do so, unfortunately, because there were others in the store that might have wanted to see it. The demos I played were for Gravity Rush, Modnation Racers: Road Trip, and Little Deviants.

Gravity Rush was a ton of fun. I didn’t get far into the demo, but the first few minutes of it involve getting used to the controls. It’s an anime-styled game in which a cat seems to be able to affect how gravity works for a blonde girl, and players take control of her to fight enemies and walk up buildings. The girl—whose name I didn’t pick up during the demo—is able to use her gravity-manipulating powers to jump and kick, as well as jump from building to building. The Vita’s gyroscope can be used to change the direction that the protagonist falls, but it wasn’t very responsive when I used it; of course, this was a demo and I was just barely familiarizing myself with the controls. Overall, it was a fun game, it looked like something I’d find on the PS2, and it’s something I’ll definitely buy when I get my own Vita.

I didn’t spend much time with Modnation Racers: Road Trip, and I’ve never played the original game. The main thing I fiddled about with was the track-building option; users choose a basic template for the background, can draw the shape they want their track to take, and then use the rear touchpad to make terrain around it.

Little Deviants was the last title I tried, and again, I didn’t play a lot of it. From what I could glean, it was essentially the Vita’s version of Face Raiders for the Nintendo 3DS. Unlike Face Raiders, the enemies in Little Deviants aren’t generated from photos taken with the handheld; instead, you see little creatures flying around on rocket ships, being chased by robot enemies. Using the gyroscope inside the Vita, you take aim and then fire at the robots to save the Deviants. It seemed like fun, and using the Vita’s outer camera it overlays the Deviants and enemies onto reality, but it’s not anything I’d recommend playing full price for.

Gravity Rush screenshot. Picture from IGN.



I left with some pretty positive impressions of the Vita. I can’t say I like the size of the system—I’d like to be able to take my portables with me in my pocket, and the PSP is just barely small enough to do so—but it feels slightly more comfortable in my hands than my 3DS does, and the display is beautiful. I’m not sold on the rear touchpad; I usually hold my handhelds with my fingers splayed across the back of the unit, and while the Vita has areas for players to put their fingers, but they still weren’t as comfortable as my usual style of play, and I feel like I would constantly accidentally hit the touchpad. More exposure to the unit will probably help me shape my opinion better on it.

The game selection thus far, in my opinion, is lackluster. Uncharted looks like fun, and Gravity Rush was really fun, but I can’t say that Modnation RacersLittle Deviants, or many of the other announced titles hold any interest to me. I want Silent Hill: Book of Memories and Persona 4: The Golden as well, but most of the games are not things I would play, in contrast to the multiple games for the 3DS I want.

I’m definitely going to have my eye on the Vita… but I can’t say it’s, at this point, a must-have handheld.

A friend of mine commented that for anyone who isn’t completely familiar with downloadable content—DLC for short—I may want to give a quick rundown of it. Thus, here is an explanation of DLC and the controversy surrounding it.

Downloadable content is exactly what it sounds like: content that can be added to a game through downloading it. Most often, this content—extra costumes, items, weapons, entire game expansions, and more—costs a small amount of money, although some publishers put it out for free. Occasionally, full games are distributed as entirely downloadable.

Microsoft’s DLC options for Final Fantasy XIII-2, including new weapons and Coliseum opponents.

The philosophy behind DLC is to expand the game without having to put out an entirely new retail disc. For instance, new scenarios were added to Alan Wake after its original release, adding several hours and some small amounts of plot for around $7 each. Other games have gotten longer expansions, such as Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony, an entirely new scenario that introduces a new, different protagonist from the original game.

Many gamers seem to have a problem with DLC, as can be seen in any gaming website’s comment sections for articles dealing with the matter. I’m focusing a lot on Final Fantasy XIII-2 lately because that is what I’m currently playing, but if we look at the comments on an article about the newest DLC for the game, we see comments such as:

-Total bullshit. This should be on the disc i purchased.

-Stop buying this garbage and publishers/developers will stop doing it!

-Instead of finding the hidden arena with hidden bosses underwater or in the dessert. You now find a large steel door with a keyhole, and next to that keyhole is a tag that reads “Pay $5.00 to enter.”  Fuck this industry. Where is all the endgame content that helps make a game survive after beating it? Why must you do this?!

Some companies—such as Capcom in Marvel vs. Capcom 3—have put out DLC that is simply a code that unlocks content already on the game’s disc. Other companies release DLC that seems to be something that should have been in the original release, such as an additional character for BioWare’s Dragon AgeOrigins.


That sort of situation seems to be where the criticism of DLC lies: the philosophy behind putting out a game and then releasing content for it soon after instead of including it in the title itself implies corporate greed, and to many gamers, there seems to be a very, very fine line between putting out quality DLC—such as new campaigns in Left 4 Dead 2 over a year after its original release—and charging money for what should have been in the game originally.

So, a quick rundown: downloadable content, or DLC, consists of various bits and pieces of games that are released after any given game is, in an effort to expand on the original title. Unfortunately, companies have begun to pick up the practice of creating DLC that feels as if it belonged in the game in the first place. Gamers heavily criticize this practice, and it is something to be aware of.

An introduction to Beyond the Joystick, my gaming blog and YouTube channel.