The Weekend Chat: Should You Pass on Season Passes?

 
 

Season Passes have existed for a while now. They rose to prominence in 2011, with L.A. Noire being the first to offer the concept – bite-sized DLC chunks and full-blown missions that would all become available to you as they released, so you wouldn’t have to buy them piecemeal. Some games like Borderlands 2, Destiny, and Evolve took their own spin on the model, and charged for extra DLC content beyond Season Pass purchases.

Word recently got out that Final Fantasy XV would be getting one too. The details are scarce as to the size and scope of its contents, and no New Zealand pricing has yet to be announced. While this is nothing new in the gaming industry, it does bring about the question.

Are Season Passes acceptable?

Is it okay to offer the promise of future content? Do passes accomplish what they appear to do, offering a significant discount to the sum total of DLC? With no strict guidelines in place, what form of Season Pass is the ideal one? Let us know in the comments below!

The Weekend Chat is a new format we're trialling amongst other ideas for NZGamer.com in 2016. We'd love to hear your feedback on this.



 

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Comments Comments (16)

 
Posted by xBOOZEMONEYx
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 4:07 PM
2
Season passes are sometimes the best way to vet the paid content. Other times they are not deals at all. I think they should always cost less than buying all the DLC outright. Also I have found that they sometimes bring even more DLC after the original season pass DLC is out to make you buy more. This is BS season passes should give you all content for the game. Also I wish more games would jist give free DLC becasuse most of this so called DLC is already made for the game even when launched. So why not do it for free it's not costimg them anymore to develop it.
 
 
 
Posted by xBOOZEMONEYx
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 4:09 PM
1
5 August 2016, 04:07 PM Reply to xBOOZEMONEYx
Season passes are sometimes the best way to vet the paid content. Other times they are not deals at all. I think they should always cost less than buying all the DLC outright. Also I have found that they sometimes bring even more DLC after the original season pass DLC is out to make you buy more. This is BS season passes should give you all content for the game. Also I wish more games would jist give free DLC becasuse most of this so called DLC is already made for the game even when launched. So why not do it for free it's not costimg them anymore to develop it.
Sorry for the typing errors. *get *just should of proof read it lol.
 
 
 
Posted by toner
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 4:23 PM
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The fact that A. Season pass and DLC content go straight to the publishers/devs, giving them more return on their hard work, and B. Motivates devs to make extra content, giving gamers more content to play, makes Season passes acceptable.

But it varies game to game. There are some games where the DLC content is below par.
 
 
 
Posted by captain X nz
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 4:47 PM
1
I have generally found that buying season passes for games I expect to play for a long time generally hooks up with a loss of enthusiasm.

Take Battlefield, I stopped playing long before the updates had rolled out - which is sad, because its still a great game, I just don't have the time for it.
 
 
 
Posted by mchumdinghy
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 5:04 PM
3
Any developer that wants to do DLC should stop, look at the Witcher 3 and aim for that. All of this pre-release season pass stuff that doesn't tell you what you are actually buying is garbage and a complete disservice to the very people supporting a game, whether it turns out to be decent or not.
In Final Fantasy XV's case the first thing Square should be worried about is delivering the game on time, considering the ride they have taken their suffering fans on over the past decade with this game. A season pass should not even be a discussion in their board room right now because that is time they really should be spending on putting this game out on the promised date and to a good standard. The fact that they have spent all this time mucking around on this project makes a season pass with this particular game a sensitive subject. Put the game out first, work on decent fan service and don't charge for anything extra unless it is substantial. That is how I see it at least.
 
 
 
Posted by robmacd1
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 6:24 PM
2
Just finish the game and release it all at once, you know - on the discs we pay large amounts of money for, all the DLC is just a marketing ploy to keep squeezing money out of us - the gamers, the fans, and is this really a good way to treat the people that buy the games and who are essentially paying your salaries
 
 
 
Posted by emetic
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 8:06 PM
3
I've never bought one and I tend to think more negatively of a game if a season pass is announced before the game's even released, but I guess I'm a recalcitrant, old school gamer who just wants really good games for cheap and is unwilling to accept that the games industry is a different beast to what it once was back in the golden years.
 
 
 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Friday 5 Aug 2016 8:44 PM
3
Fallout 4 seasons pass was the worse i've seen in years. i mean Witcher 3 season pass i would buy without hesitation,it's very reliant on the company and CDPROjectRed is one of the good guys.
 
 
 
Posted by predatorhunter
On Saturday 6 Aug 2016 9:08 AM
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season passes should contain a decent amount of content, games that a MP focused should 6 new maps per dlc and games that are campaign focused should get a decent sized add on to the story.
 
 
 
Posted by cortez72
On Saturday 6 Aug 2016 2:41 PM
3
I agree with all the dissatisfied comments above me. While we aren't representative of the masses, I'd like to think this is how most feel about the practice.

My thought is developers will often use this as a tool to keep players coming back to their title. Star Wars Battlefront 3 is a prime example. The studio don't even know what their fourth addition to the season pass is!?

"Please spend 3/4 of the new games price for a 3 monthly roll out of content. We don't know what this content is just yet, but trust the experience you had with the unfinished title we released. I'm sure the DLC will be good."
 
 
 
oconnomiyaki
Posted by oconnomiyaki
On Saturday 6 Aug 2016 7:21 PM
3
I've grown to accept DLC providing it doesn't feel insidious. The Assassin's Creed 2 DLC was a bad example of how to do it because it really did seem like they took out a chunk of the game to sell it to you later. The way The Witcher 3 does it is a good example. But generally I get that game development is expensive and the cost of games has been fairly immune to inflation over the years and people need to make money.

Now, in terms of season passes, I generally only look at them if I'm getting DLC down the line after its all released. So if I was looking at the Dragon Age: Inquisition DLC then I would get the season pass as a way to get a discount on it all. But I wouldn't look at getting one up front because the chances are that I won't be playing the game by the time all the content is out. I forget which CoD had the predator and Jason in it, but I bought the season pass for it and I was done playing it by eary April and only half of the DLC was out. I would have been better off just buying it piecemeal as I needed it, as I just ended up spending more in the silly hopes of getting a bargain.

And, you know, getting a season pass way down the line can be a really nice excuse to revisit a game again. I know I'll be picking up the one for Rise of the Tomb Raider in November.
 
 
 
Posted by Wertbag
On Sunday 7 Aug 2016 11:44 AM
1
To many companies start a new project with the discussion what can we tear out to sell? What missions aren't essential to the story so we can bundle them separately? This idea is all about the money and not about the best experience for the customer. I was keen on Total War Warhammer but I'm willing to wait to get the complete experience even if it takes a year.
 
 
 
Posted by emetic
On Monday 8 Aug 2016 6:43 PM
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Season pass is a bit of a misnomer anyway; it's more like a concession card.
 
 
 
Posted by Sir Thrustsalot
On Monday 8 Aug 2016 6:59 PM
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Like almost everything these days it truly is buyer beware. I've payed for two seasons passes, BF3 & BF4 Premium. BF3 I got every last cent out of it and it was well worth the money but BF4 I felt rather salty about due to its poor performance. Here's what you need to think about before you buy.
1, Don't buy before the first DlC drops. You're parting with your money for an unknown commodity. Battlefield Hardline and Evolve effectively died off before the first DLC dropped.
2, Know what you're paying for. Is it just maps or is it all future content? Black ops 3 only advertised four map packs for a season pass then hid the guns behind a horrid RNG system asking for more money so you could get an extra chance at unlocking one.
3, Are you sure you'll be playing the game for its entire DLC cycle or is there another game releasing soon you're after?
 
 
 
Posted by NZBuc
On Monday 8 Aug 2016 9:47 PM
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5 August 2016, 04:47 PM Reply to captain X nz
I have generally found that buying season passes for games I expect to play for a long time generally hooks up with a loss of enthusiasm.

Take Battlefield, I stopped playing long before the updates had rolled out - which is sad, because its still a great game, I just don't have the time for it.
I'm the same, loved playing bf4, but never played enough to feel premium was worth it for me (after buying it on release)

I do like how ea seems to be making map packs free after a while though (bf4, hardline, titanfall)
 
 
 
Posted by kentnz
On Monday 15 Aug 2016 6:12 PM
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I only ever buy season passes once all the dlc contents are released, and I am sure I will enjoy them. I am also a fan of waiting for GotY editions of games to come out too.