OPINION: Modern video games are full price with half the content

By Gustavo Buenrostro

Video game companies’ focus has shifted towards3 profit rather than having a complete game.

Video game companies 10 to 15 years ago would focus on giving a complete game to players. The game that they would give would have extra levels, different skins or even entire levels that are locked out and the player would have to play the game to unlock them.

Big companies like Bungie, Activision and Epic speed up the process of games being complete so the games can meet the launch date. What the players end up getting is an incomplete game where there is nothing to do.

The way these companies fix this is with Downloadable Content that the companies sell to the players for an additional charge.

If the base game is 60 dollars, than the DLC would be $20. So that is $80 in total for a game. In the case of Bungie and Activision, they have multiple DLC’s ranging from different prices. Some can be $20, $30 even up to $40.

Let’s take Bungie’s game of “Destiny” with the base game being $60. They had four follow up DLC’s that cost a total of $110 put together.

The total amount on the complete game would be $170. Sometimes companies offer season passes. Where people can buy DLC’s for a reduced price. So instead of paying $40  for two DLC’s, the players can pay $30 or $20. Which sounds good but in reality, the difference is marginal and if the product is still incomplete,  there is no point in getting the pass.

That is outrageous for any game to cost that much. Yet they still do it, because the gaming industry has changed to an extreme emphasis on the business side of it.

No player ever believes that the gaming industry doesn’t care about money and that it isn’t a business, but the very least they can do is give us  complete games.

In today’s age, video game companies spend more time trying to find the next trend to sell the game rather than making their game a good game.

The biggest example of this is battle royale games. Games like “Fortnite: Battle Royale” copied the battle royale formula from “PlayerUnknown’s Battleground,” which itself copied from other games like “H1Z1” and “DayZ.”

However, what makes these games different from say “Destiny” is that these games are free to play. They also have the tag “early access” which tells the players that the game isn’t complete yet. What makes these types of games different from AAA games, games with high budgets, is that players know exactly what they are getting when they download the game.

Games like these also sell cosmetic items like different skins or backgrounds in loading screens.

Because players can see exactly what they will buy from the cosmetic items that these games sell, the players buy them.

While these games are popular and are doing something right by being transparent, it is also hurting the chances of players getting fully realized games.

The way the industry will look at the successes of games like “Fortnite” or “PUBG,” is that they can sell games that have a minimalist goal and have a lot of cool looking things to sell to the players.

Video games like “The Last of Us” and “Horizon: Zero Dawn,” games with fantastic stories, rich world-building and complete releases, will become rare as the gaming company moves forward.

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