Game Developers And Publishers Using Psychological Reasoning For Selling Extra Content

I’ll be talking about one of the problems gamers are facing while purchasing video games today. One of those problems is Season Passes and DLC added on as an extra purchase after we already obtained our favorite games.

Major game publishers like EA, Ubisoft, and many others should change their ways. Keeping in mind some gamers exactly don’t want to purchase Addons. They do it because each addon on their favorite games adds a more enjoyable experience. Another reason might be, fans of the game who have found enjoyment playing their favorite game require more content to further enjoy the game already purchased. The content offered within the game might have limited how long gamers can play the game. Addons are effective repurchase cycle carefully thought out by major publishers and game developers to add another cycle of revenue once a previous revenue stream has saturated.

Since having consumers pay for extra content once the previous content has been overplayed provides a devious way to create revenue. With an effective business model studios will not change their business practice. It’s hard to argue with numbers, “Major Publishers” will say.

Why does paying for DLC, Addons, Extra Content work in games?

I believe it goes back to the way some consumers think. If we purchase our favorite game and then play our favorite game for a set amount of time. Eventually, we are going not going to play the game anymore. Studios, major publishers thought of a way to repeat the sales cycle of their releases. The more fans a series has or large sales numbers from their previous releases provide a new stage of development. Selling extras on top of releases.

The solution might be as simple as not purchasing extras anymore. But, if we don’t. We might face a new issue, a standard release with no content lined up after the release of the game.

We would all hope for the content to be included at no extra charge. Even though there’s a long discussion going on as we speak about game developers cutting out content from their game and selling it to us. All though, There’s no actual proof developers have been cutting out content and selling it to us.

From what I understand it’s created within the development phase as an initial strategy to keep the company in positive dollar numbers. Creating a game ain’t cheap. It would cost below $25,000,000 or above $25,000,000 to create a box office hit like For Honor, Horizon Zero Dawn, Battlefield 1. Sometimes the budget for marketing would double the cost of creating the game.

After all, if a studio does not make money they close-down. Like Lionhead did.

Lionhead Studio Closing
Lionhead Studio Closing

Since we are talking about the studios perspective now, I am going to speak more about the reasons behind selling extra content and how they benefit the publishers or game developers side.

Within each major company creating or publishing video games. There are shareholders. With shareholders, the company is able to generate additional money to continue operating. This might be millions to billions depending if the company is a desirable investment option to people with big wallets.

What attracts potential investors is, sales numbers.

Going back to the top of the article when I was speaking about why consumers purchase additional content. It’s to further enjoy the game they have already purchased. Talking from a consumer perspective. If we have fully enjoyed playing the game we picked up, we would eventually become bored of playing the game. Right? This is where selling us extras come into play. If we buy it. Developers and major publishers will keep selling DLC and Addons to us. It is hard to resist not purchasing more from the game we love, once we have enough money to be able too. I have purchased additional content from games on my Xbox One and PS4 after I’ve got bored of the content I’ve played over and over. I remember purchasing extra content brought me happiness and joy.

Game Developers and Publishers DLC Abuse

DLC Abuse
DLC Abuse

Now talking from the developers and publishers perspective. They see it as a deep psychological reason and a business opportunity they should be monetizing because it works. Selling the extra content to us brings in millions of extra dollars to kick back into their company and show their shareholders.

They know with consoles taking the lead in gaming, a consumer can not pirate DLC on Xbox One and PS4 when it’s always online.

They know on PS4 and Xbox One when we purchase a game we sit and look at the content we don’t have, teasing it into our face through digital screens and physical form. Showing us the content we could pay for where it matters most, either in-game or on the store. Waiting for us to eventually say, “I had a lot of fun playing that game, maybe I will purchase content to further enjoy it”.

The Strategy provides more money to the company and provides us gamers a new way to enjoy the game we purchased. It’s an equal win for both parties in some cases. But, some gamers, including me are tired of the content not being included in the game as a reward for purchasing a $60 release. We understand the business behind it, all we ask is for a better way. A more affordable way. We don’t like giving you our money, I’d rather go buy a pack of beer and sit down with my buddies playing your game.

Do you think there’s a better way for game developers or publishers to offer us content? What are your thoughts on the subject? Let’s get the conversation started in the comment section below. Thank you for reading, Pj Mischuk signing out.

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