A moment to rage: Season Passes

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A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Hercanic » Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:31 pm

Quite a few publishers are jumping aboard this "Season Pass" phrase to promote game DLC, as a way to pre-order the "complete package" -- even before the main game has been shipped. It is clear that marketers are targeting a sports-enthusiast demographic. Do you feel included or alienated by this? Is it appropriate for gaming culture, or should this practice be shunned? My stance has recently been solidified: I hate it. To understand why, let's have a look at some of the current culprits:


ea sports season ticket.jpeg

A sports term for sports games.

Verdict: Acceptable.


walking dead season pass.jpg
walking dead season pass.jpg (50.8 KiB) Viewed 2018 times

TV series use the term Season, and this franchise has a popular TV series on air right now. They also marketed and priced these games as incremental episodes, so the term continues to make sense within that context.

Verdict: Acceptable.


black ops 2 season pass.jpg

Appealing to the frat house? In this instance, Season means 4 DLC packs.

Verdict: Annoying.


saints row 3 season pass.jpg
saints row 3 season pass.jpg (26.72 KiB) Viewed 2018 times

A silly term for a silly game? In this case, Season means 3 mission packs.

Verdict: Annoying.


gears of war 3 season pass.jpg

More college dorm pandering? In this usage, Season means 4 "new releases", whatever that means.

Verdict: *grumble*


borderlands 2 season pass.JPG

Pre-order three, get the fourth free! Hey, they even come in different colors! We're promised "new campaigns", "new locations", "new experiences", and "new surprises."

Verdict: Urge to rage, rising...


darksiders 2 season pass.jpg
darksiders 2 season pass.jpg (25.52 KiB) Viewed 2018 times

What does this even mean? I don't know, Season has no actual meaning in the gaming community. It can mean whatever the publisher wants.

Verdict: Urge to rage, stewing...


assassins creed 3 season pass.jpg
assassins creed 3 season pass.jpg (22.13 KiB) Viewed 2018 times

I... I don't even... What?

Verdict: Urge to rage, simmering...


aliens colonial marines season pass.png
aliens colonial marines season pass.png (39.92 KiB) Viewed 2018 times

Panned by critics and players alike, will this even see a full "season"? Buyer beware, right?

Verdict: Urge to rage, disgustedly boiling...


bioshock 3 infinite season pass.jpg

WHAT. THE. FUCKING. FUCK. That's it, now I'm pissed. Pissed enough to make this goddamn thread so I can share the rage. Unlike most of the above, I am looking forward to this game. I love the developer's dedication to world-building. They could have just made Bioshock 3: More Underwater Shit, but they actually invested the time and resources into fleshing out a whole new experience. I admire that.

But this? This fucking sports term? What does that have to do with a dark, alternative timeline of American Exceptionalism paired with steampunk in the sky?

I love science fiction, and to a lesser extent I enjoy fantasy. I like creativity and imagination in my entertainment. I like exploring the "what if" question.

Sports, though? They fucking bore me. If given the choice, I'd sooner read the goddamn dictionary; I would at least get something out of my time. Nothing could be more alienating to me than completely and utterly unrelated sports vernacular.

But wait, TV uses the term seasons, right? Yes, but they don't call it a season pass. It's the idea of a ticket that firmly roots the concept into the domain of sports.

While we're on this topic, what does Season Pass even fucking mean? Nothing! How many expansions? How many DLCs? How many missions? When will any of them be released? We don't fucking know! The core game isn't even due to ship for another month! But hey kids, hand over your money anyway! They promise it'll be something you'll like! Maybe it'll be something totally new, too, and not just shit they held out of release because of publisher pressure!

Verdict: RAGE




Closing thoughts: We have a term for buying a game with all add-on content included, it's called the Game of the Year Edition (which, come to think of it, is a very misleading phrase, so if we're to be honest here game terms defined by marketers have been shitty and manipulative from the get-go).

With the rise of the pre-order phenomenon, where people actually pay months or even years in advance for a digital product (do I really live on this planet?), it would seem pre-ordering whole packs of DLC is what has naturally followed. As it stands, we don't have a concise term for this, so that's where "Season Pass" comes in. Even so, I still hate it.

Terminology aside, the larger question becomes whether pre-ordering DLC in bulk like this is something we as customers really want, or even should want. 'Should' is a prickly patch, but take a moment to consider what has changed: Before a full retail game goes to "pre-order" status, there are at least screenshots, trailers, articles, interviews -- something to go on. These season passes? We know next to nothing about them, what they'll offer, not even any bloody titles. You are essentially loaning your money to a vague promise. Publishers are more than happy leave that wool over your eyes and make a mad grab for money; you are reducing their financial risks while receiving none of the financial gains! Ahh, capitalism...

We vote with our dollar, right? So if any of us have a problem with this practice, we don't participate, simple as that, right?

No. Fuck that. Look at all those titles up there. This shit isn't just going to go away by itself. We vote with our mouths just as much as our dollar. Perceptions shift by the surrounding mood. Don't underestimate the force of ridicule. This is my contribution, a foul-mouthed rant.

Now go do your part! Add a sting of shame to this practice, or be prepared to Super Size your next pre-order for only $0.49 so you can unlock the exclusive Game Trailer! And for just $0.99 more you can pre-view the actual game title! Act now, and you'll also gain early access to the micro-transaction menu for a mere $1.95! But wait, there's more! We'll even include a complimentary receipt, a $5 value for only $2.49! This is a limited time offer! You'll only receive these options if you order within the next quarter! If you're a true fan, though, don't forget about pre-ordering the possible sequel and all it's DLC in our Lifetime Pass for only $199.99! Man, these premium deals just write themselves!

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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Krazy » Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:40 pm

If you buy the season pass, you should be able to switch between Fall, Winter, and Summer. . .

[crickets]

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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby IskatuMesk » Tue Mar 05, 2013 5:57 am

Season Pass is just the same stupid DLC shit that Assinvasion has been forcing down people's throats since consoles. Nothing new. Still disgusting, still stupid, and casuals will keep buying it.

I refer to my artistic impression I left in another thread.

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Also out of all those titles above, Darksiders and Saints Row are the only ones with decent ancestors. Darksiders II is unfortunately a pile of shit before it even hits the DLC portion. SR3 is an unfortunate victim of THQ, I think. THQ got what they deserved by the end.

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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Falchion » Tue Mar 05, 2013 9:18 am

Won't be long and we'll be seeing Blizzard doing exactly the same thing post-LotV, with decals, skins, animations and all other shit.

Or worse: Post-HotS.
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby mark_009_vn » Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:54 pm

What the shit is a season pass? I'm not verse with Steam jargons...
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby UntamedLoli » Tue Mar 05, 2013 9:08 pm

It's a method of buying an unknown amount of DLC and you have no idea what it will actually contain.
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Taeradun » Wed Mar 06, 2013 1:58 am

season passes are only a part of the whole DLC shitfest that I could ramble about for hours but to sum up basically has its good parts and its completely fucking horrible parts

also the whole thing with preorder bonuses is annoying as hell as well, but my main method of buying games is getting things like the equally silly-titled "game of the year" editions for a few bucks during steam sales long after release so w/e

though it must've sucked to be one of the people who got duped into buying the saints row 3 "season pass" that just had the godawful DLC missions but none of the kickin' rad horse armour like the hotdog costume

Falchion wrote:Won't be long and we'll be seeing Blizzard doing exactly the same thing post-LotV, with decals, skins, animations and all other shit.

Or worse: Post-HotS.
if it's just horse armour and no gold ammo i don't really mind as long as you aren't bombarded with ads for them all through the game client

i have literally paid actual Earth money to buy a moustache for my Portal 2 robot that only two other human beings have seen me use since it's only a co-op game lol
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Falchion » Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:36 am

Taeradun wrote:if it's just horse armour and no gold ammo i don't really mind as long as you aren't bombarded with ads for them all through the game client

i have literally paid actual Earth money to buy a moustache for my Portal 2 robot that only two other human beings have seen me use since it's only a co-op game lol


You don't think they'll flood ads, all for the sake of pennies?

Mark my words, by the time they do that, it's when B.Net will become unbearable. And B.Net 2.0 for Starcraft II is already a mess, and it's revamp for HotS didn't do much...
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby IskatuMesk » Wed Mar 06, 2013 6:01 am

I like DLC like what Dungeon Defenders does. It's free for the longest time, and the game itself is dirt cheap. You can easily nab it all during sales. Any more and it should just be an expansion like the good old days or, you know, those anti-capitalistic things called patches.
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby wibod » Wed Mar 06, 2013 8:54 am

Season passes for stuff like CoD is mostly a silly business tactic to boost profits for the year. People buy the game, then the season pass as opposed to buy the game and the first DLC pack. It's also a great way to guarantee that people buy all of the map packs.
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby IskatuMesk » Wed Mar 06, 2013 10:01 am

Maps should never be something you are selling.
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Ricky_Honejasi » Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:34 pm

I admit it can be ridiculous.

I check on Steam for Call of Duty : Black Ops II then I see the base game being 59,99 and its Season Pass being ... 49,99 US.

For 4 DLCs packs, I seem to only be able to find quick info about the Revolution one. Seems each DLC will cost 15$ US for 60$ total seperately.

With so little info on all DLCs, it's quite a large jump of faith just to save 10$ out of 60$. That's considering the odds are at least 1 DLC of 15$ will suck with the potential of all 4 of them.

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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby RazorclawX » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:52 am

I rarely pay for DLC. Even then it requires research, a cost/benefit analysis, and an honest look at how much I actually like the game to want to pay for something extra.
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Taeradun » Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:57 am

plus DLC for singleplayer games are almost universally poorly-bolted-on things that don't fit in with the rest of the vanilla game
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Re: A moment to rage: Season Passes

Postby Taeradun » Thu Mar 07, 2013 6:05 am

Falchion wrote:Won't be long and we'll be seeing Blizzard doing exactly the same thing post-LotV, with decals, skins, animations and all other shit.

Or worse: Post-HotS.

oh hey

http://battle.net/sc2/en/buy-now/digital-deluxe
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