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MercurySteam Rues Rushed Castlevania: Lords of Shadow DLC

Posted by Sammy Barker

Surprise success

If you haven’t played Castlevania: Lords of Shadow’s poorly received downloadable content, then developer MercurySteam would rather you didn’t. Chatting candidly with Gameranx, producer David Cox explained that the content was rushed after the game’s encouraging retail performance.

He said:

The problem was that the game's success caught everyone by surprise. It caught senior management by surprise and they wanted us to do DLC.

As such, the team never actually planned to do any expansion packs, which resulted in the content being hurried to market. Cox continued that it was a “mistake”, and that given the opportunity again, he would have ensured that the DLC was planned from the get-go.

Let’s just hope the upcoming Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 does things properly, eh?

[via gameranx.com]

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User Comments (7)

Squiggle55

#1

Squiggle55 said:

noo! don't plan DLC from the get go! that's not the lesson here, David! The problem is not the way the money grab was performed, it's the money grab itself!

JaredJ

#2

JaredJ said:

I am playing this game now. Is the dlc that bad? Should I not download it?

Stuffgamer1

#3

Stuffgamer1 said:

@Squiggles55: DLC is not always a money grab, and planning to do some for a game does not automatically mean that the game will be lacking in features that were cut to be put in the DLC. Sure, some developers do it wrong, but it's not a given and I'd like to give this guy the benefit of the doubt since he was willing to be open about how things went wrong last time. That's more than you get from most developers...

That said: seeing as I haven't mostly been following Lords of Shadow, I was unaware that the DLC was considered bad in the first place. What's wrong with it, exactly?

VenomTheEvil

#4

VenomTheEvil said:

They were short mission packs with little new content, I will be honest though and say I actually enjoyed them a fair bit. If you can get them cheap they are worth a go.

Squiggle55

#5

Squiggle55 said:

@stuffgamer1 his description of how this DLC went down is the clearest definition of a money grab I've ever seen. They didnt' have anything planned and the developers weren't even considering it, but senior management made them do it for money at the last minute and it was poorly done. I don't see what the point in defending that is.

If they plan the content beforehand, and develop it along with the main game, but leave it out to charge extra for, that is also a money grab. That's not to say the content is good or bad, but it's clearly influenced by making more money. That's also not to say that making money or running a business is a bad thing, but it is clearly a money grab. Good for them for making more money. Gone are the days before DLC. Very rarely is it used with good intentions (see Mighty Switch Force) actually trying to extend the life of a game after the fact, more often than not it's all about collecting more than retail price for something they developed all at once.

Stuffgamer1

#6

Stuffgamer1 said:

@Squiggle55: I was not defending what happened with the first game's DLC...only an idiot would claim it was anything but a money grab after what Mr. Cox said. My point was that planning to make DLC for a game does not automatically mean that the planned DLC will be an equally rushed money grab, or that it will detract from the base game. All they have to do is plan a full, complete game, get it near completion, then have the prep guys figuring out the DLC while the production guys put the finishing touches on the game. When done correctly, this adds to the overall value of the product and is NOT a rip-off. Sure, all you hear about are the rip-offs, but that's not all that's out there...it's just people don't complain when it's done right, and complaints are always louder than congratulations.

Squiggle55

#7

Squiggle55 said:

that's true, if executed the way you describe, with a separate team starting to think about DLC beginning only when the finishing touches are being put on the core game, that would be the ideal way to do timely DLC. I can only hope studios and developers think that's the right thing to do as well. there's no way to say for sure if more do it the right way or the lame way, but all I know is I hate hearing about DLC on the disc or DLC being developed from the get go.

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