Update: EA has updated the Marketplace, and there are now 156 items to download.
Browsing the Xbox Live Marketplace today brought with it an interesting discovery. The area of new game add-ons was full of items with no box art, taking up nearly the entire section. All of them were for the same game, NHL 11. The game doesn’t come out until September 7th, yet the DLC is live. What are these 93 items?
Stat boosts such as Skater speed +3, ranging from 80 MS Points to 160 MS Points.
Not only are these listed separately in the Marketplace menu pushing other pieces of actual content off the new release section (more of an issue with Microsoft’s Markeplace design), they are the latest means of EA to further see how far gamers are willing to go. They are no providing actual content. These are not jerseys. These are no stadiums. These are small pieces of code already in the game to boost the player up a notch because they are too lazy to do it themselves.
EA has done this before, but to be clear, these are for specific positions. If you want to update the speed of your wing man, you need to purchase separate DLC for your goalie. They only work for a single position.
Supporting this garbage, this completely asinine junk, only gives the company the perspective that it works. Those of us who won’t pay for it will end up suffering because of those who do. Slowly, leveling up a player will become more difficult, pushing more people into buying stat boosts simply to stay on a level playing field.
Between in-game advertisements, DLC such as this, and other add-on content, why are we still paying $60 for a video game, especially in the case of yearly updated sports games? Can this price be justified? No, it can’t, so when EA sees their sales slipping, maybe it’s because we’re tired of being taken advantage of, like putting up bogus DLC a month before the game it even released.
Note: Many people are noting they did this last year. They are correct. That doesn’t change they put these up a month early in anticipation, and still believe there is a market for it. As one Reddit commentor stated:
“Some are hard to get though, I myself am guilty of buying the +5 acceleration…”
That says it all. The game is designed as such that gaining these items legit is difficult, pushing people towards buying them. It’s not that dissimilar to what happened with the MMO Allods Online, which patched the game rendering it nearly impossible to level up without buying things with real money.