It looks like everyone and their great-great Grandmother is weighing in on the price of the Evolve DLC. Apparently it’s expensive, and that’s obviously a bad thing when you have already paid at least $60 for the game itself. Being the head of gaming site – this one, obviously – I’m going to throw my hat in the ring as well, and here is my official stance: I don’t have any problem with it whatsoever.
Now, keep in mind that I am not necessarily defending DLC in general. I definitely ripped Marvel Heroes’ DLC on this site when I first saw it, for example. However, there are DLC like Marvel Heroes that predominantly lock gameplay components like characters and modes behind paywalls – large ones, in Marvel Heroes’ case – and then there are ones like Evolve that mostly apply to skins and customization items. I personally have zero interest in paying extra so my Goliath can look slightly different from someone else’s Goliath (unless they also paid for the skin, at which point tough luck), but I have no problem with the developers charging for the privilege. For example, if you want that fancy new skin in League of Legends, you have to pay for it. The argument I have heard is that League of Legends is free to play, so that’s somehow ok. I personally think the argument that “I paid for the game, so give me everything else for free” is a thin reed to hang your hat on.
I, for one, view DLC as a modern extension of old school expansion packs. Whereas 15 years ago you would buy expansion packs Blue Shift or Opposing Force for $20-30 apiece to get more out of Half-Life, today you can buy a map pack for Call of Duty for $10-15, but somehow the modern gamer sees this as a major step backwards. If you want to extend your playing experience with new content from the developers I don’t think that the devs are in any way obligated to provide said content gratis. Some will, like CD Projekt plans to do for The Witcher 3, but to expect every dev to do so is selfish on the player’s part.
My issue with DLC, as mentioned above, is when it stops your progress or locks features away until you pay for them. I went back to play Champions Online after it went free to play and my biggest complaint was that they put the paid content on display next to the free content, effectively taunting you with powers and items you couldn’t touch without paying extra. The only time I can remember paying for anything in a game was when I spent $10 on a double-Station Cash weekend early in Planetside 2’s lifecycle to unlock some new guns that I wanted. I might just be strong willed, but cosmetic items will not get me to open my wallet. I don’t care if they’re skins for my monster in Evolve, a character visual overhaul in League of Legends, or a custom finisher in Guild Wars 2, I simply don’t care about how my character looks enough to pay extra for it, and I don’t have allot of pity for those who need those shinies so bad that they just can’t help themselves.
The moral here is that there are DLC schemes to get up in a fervor over, but Evolve’s is not one of them. If you just have to have that skin so badly that you’re willing to shell out $5 for it, then more power to Turtle Rock Studios for taking your money. Me, I’m going to pass and put that fiver toward my next full game purchase. You can decide for yourself where you stand.