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Chromehounds Highlights Problems With Downloadable Content

Chromehounds BoxOn Friday, the latest downloadable content for From Software’s Chromehounds hit the Xbox Live Marketplace. For 100 points each, twelve new items were made available, including weapons. All of the new content is usable in online play and highlights some of the issues with downloadable content. The content has pretty much been criticized from all sides, and Luke Smith from 1up sums up the issues in a recent blog post. Other paid content releases have received scrutiny in the past, mainly because of the value proposition that they hold. The original offender, of course, was the almost useless horse armor for Oblivion. Some of the downloadable Ghost Recon content has also been criticized. The new content for Chromehounds will run US gamers about $12.50, which runs about 21% of the cost of the original game.

If things were just a matter of cost, however, there wouldn’t be as much of an issue. The big issue is that potentially game balance altering content is being made available for online play. So far, indications from the online forums indicate that statistically the new content isn’t more effective than existing weaponry. However, this merely highlights the bind that content providers can get into by making these kinds of add-ons available. Either the new accessories are weak and a poor value for the money, or they are stronger and will change the game balance to favor those that can afford the content.

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