27 January 2010

Poet Costume DLC in Dante's Inferno: More DLC the World Doesn't Want/Need

Started playing Dante's Inferno this week. The game, despite high production values and highbrow source material, isn't all that surprising or exciting. (More on the game itself when the review airs in a couple weeks.)

A few things that occurred to me while playing:

1. Will future lazy college students play this game instead of reading the Cliffs Notes of The Divine Comedy?

2. Will you be interested in purchasing the Poet Costume when the DLC becomes available in February? No? Then how about you, sir? No again?

3. I understand that games, like this one, are expensive to make, and that DLC can extend the life of a game. But if publishers are selling Poet Costumes, and--glancing further down the list--"New In-Game Abilities" (could they be more vague?), maybe game makers are pushing too hard to create things that no one wants, or needs.

The last time I bought DLC was for Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

I played through the extra levels, but I barely remember what I did in them, or who I did it to. The levels had none of the narrative gravity of the original game. They were well made, but were also forgettable, barely qualifying as diversions. They were a few hours of white noise that did nothing to enhance--or detract--from the original experience.

When I want more The Force Unleashed, it's the main game I think about and crave, and not the DLC.

I realize that consuming DLC is a completely voluntary enterprise. But how much of it is necessary? How much of it needs to be in the world?

Have you tried watching Deleted Scenes segments from DVDs? The reason those scenes were cut from the final product are usually painfully obvious.

Or imagine if Coppola suddenly decided to add 20 minutes of footage to The Godfather II. We'd be curious about it, and we'd all want to see it, but would it enhance the original in any tangible way?

Ditto for most DLC. It's cool in theory, but if the DLC was truly an integral part of the main game, it would have been part of the main game.

You know who I feel bad for? I feel bad for the guy who has to show up at Visceral Games on Wednesday morning, February 10th, still hungover from the Dante's Inferno launch the night before.

The poor guy has to munch some Advil, then get back to work on that "Poet Costume" the world doesn't want, or need.

Vic and I Show Up for Work Wearing the Same Exact Outfit

When the Reviews on the Run crew came to pick me up for our shoot yesterday afternoon, I opened the door to the ROTR mobile and was greeted by the sounds of laughter.

What's so funny? I wondered.

Vic, who was sitting up front, said, "You are not going to believe this, but we are dressed exactly alike."

Now, Victor has accused me of dressing like him before. And I have accused him of dressing like me. We've never determined exactly who the guilty party is here.

I assumed he was making a bigger deal out of it than was necessary...until we parked and exited the car and I got a look at what he was wearing.

Same zip-neck sweater. Same jacket. Similar shoulder bag. And, once he'd donned his eyeglasses, which he wears to play games and/or see Avatar again, he was right:

People were seeing double in downtown Vancouver yesterday.