Bioware tries to explain away controversy surrounding Mass Effect 3 day-one DLC
Thursday, February 23, 2012 11:35 AM
Bioware has been coping a certain amount of flack since details of a day one downloadable content (DLC) pack for its upcoming sci-fi RPG behemoth Mass Effect 3 were accidentally leaked.
This week, Microsoft accidentally put up a product lisitng for the first DLC, titled From Ashes, which will be available to download and install from the time the game is released on March 9th (available on Xbox360, PS3 and PC).
Now, confirmation of the DLC's existence in itself is hardly an issue – everyone knows DLC will be coming for a game of this size, although many fans were left outraged that the product listing contained a pretty big spoiler about how it will affect the make-up of Shepherd's crew on board the Normandy (we'll save these spoilerific details until the end).
No, the bone of contention for gamers lies in the fact that the pack is in production before Mass Effect 3 has even been released. Much like the furore over the Catwoman DLC for last year's Batman: Arkham City, there's a fear among the gaming fraternity that this is content which should have been on the disc and included in the RRP, but has been cut out so the "soulless corporations pulling the strings" (EA in this case) can makes some extra moolah.
To add insult to injury, at least Catwoman was free if you'd brought a new copy of the Arkham City. Everyone will need to pay for the privilege of playing From Ashes, unless they've plumped for the rather expensive ME3 N7 Collector's Edition.
Bioware's been quick to quash the negative PR that has been whipped up and assuage these fears though, with the game's executive producer Casey Hudson explaining how the developer approaches DLC.
"It takes about three months from 'content complete' to bug-fix, certify, manufacture, and ship game discs," he wrote on Twitter. "In that time we work on DLC."
"DLC has fast certification and no manufacturing, so if a team works very hard, they can get a DLC done in time to enjoy it with your first playthrough on day one."
Whether that's enough to appease fans of the series remains to be seen, especially as this DLC sounds like it could have quite a bearing on your squad and the direction of the story in this concluding chapter.
(Here's the spoiler bit - stop reading now if you don't want to ruin it for yourself)
From Ashes adds a new squadmate to your party… and this one's a Prothean. That's right, the race that we all thought was wiped out by the Reapers in ME1, before the full extent of the horrific truth was revealed in ME2; that the Protheans had been genetically "repurposed" by the Reapers to serve as their slave race, the Collectors.
We just hope this one plays nice.