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My Complaint With DLC…

Downloadable Content. DLC. It's a good thing, right? I mean, it's like an extension of the game you're already playing and if it's not free then it's usually cheaper than a whole new game. Its popularity has become so prevalent, it's not really a surprise when a game announces DLC is on the horizon, it's now expected. I don't know that I've ever heard of anyone complain about DLC. I have heard of gamers complain about the price of DLC, but never that it was being made available. I have heard of gamers complain that a certain platform was going to receive DLC before the others, but never that it was being made available. I'm not a big fan of DLC, and here's why. I never seem to play it.

Yep, it's true. I'm confessing now that seldom do I ever get the DLC for a game. Any game (although when DLC for Portal 2 comes out, I might get that). I don't even know why I don't get it. Like I mentioned, it's fairly cheap and often free, so it's not a price or cost issue. I suppose most of the time it's because after I finish a game (and I am one of those few that HAS to finish every game I start) I move on and never go back. I typically play a game one time through and after I finish it, it either gets traded in (if it's a console game) or deleted from my hard drive (if it's a PC game). So, by the time the DLC comes out for a particular game, I might not even have it any more.

Okay, so maybe you're wondering, "What's the big deal? If you don't play DLC then don't play it."

The other day I'm reading something about Mass Effect 3 and it discusses some of the story points from the first two games. I'm enjoying the trip down memory lane recounting some of the events from those games, both of which I played and finished. But then it mentions an event that I don't recall. A significant event that had I played I would've certainly remembered.

*** Mass Effect 2 Spoiler Alert ***

From: Admiral Hackett

Commander Shepard:

Our scans in the Amada system have turned up something we thought you should see: the final location of the wreckage of the SSV Normandy.

We thought this news might be important to you, but we also have an ulterior motive. The Alliance would like to honor the Normandy with a monument, to be built on the site of the ship's final resting place. We'd like to invite you to place the monument and be the first to walk on the site.

There are still 20 crew members unaccounted for from the attack on the Normandy. If you find any signs of these lost crewman, we ask that you report to the Alliance so that those heroes' families might find some closure.

Godspeed to you, Commander.

Wait, what?!? I didn't get that email. Tech Support? TECH SUPPORT?!? Somebody get me tech support.

The Normandy's crash site is available automatically from the Cerberus Network as free DLC. When the DLC is installed, after acquiring the Normandy SR-2, Shepard will receive an e-mail from Admiral Hackett.

So, free DLC that includes an exceptional sounding mission of what I consider significant importance.

And I didn't download it, didn't install it and certainly didn't play it.

Since I played both games, of course I know the details leading up to the loss of the SSV Normandy in the opening scenes of Mass Effect 2. The Normandy was an awesome and beautiful ship that survived the first game relatively unscathed so it was a bit sad to see it shredded to pieces in the second. It played such a critical role, I think a mission to recover the bodies of the 20 missing crew members and putting up a monument to honor the Normandy would be something everyone who plays Mass Effect would be interested in.

Sure, it's not a critical element in continuing the story line in the second or third game (due out early next year), but it is a detail that if you're not aware of and read it somewhere it can be surprising.

And that is why I'm not a fan of DLC, and that's my complaint with DLC.

If you don't play it, for whatever reason, you're missing out on little details (and perhaps big details that I don't know about) about the story that can be considered important items of interest.

The Mass Effect series is certainly not the only game I'm missing out on, I'm sure. With nearly every game offering DLC, I'm bound to be missing out on other missions, stories, characters, and details that contribute to the overall game.

I may have to rethink my perspective on DLC, but I do think developers should somehow incorporate anything relevant from DLC into future installments of the games so the player has all of the information available. Heck, at least put out a press release or summary of changes.

Do you play DLC for all of your games, or have you suffered missed opportunities too?

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