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Iwata: Nintendo Won't Deceive With DLC

Posted by Mike Mason

Still getting the complete package

Downloadable content has, probably deservedly, earned a bad reputation thanks to some publishers' actions with paid add-ons, so it's quite understandable if you're worried about Nintendo's own upcoming attempts at the model. Try not to get too worked up — Nintendo president Satoru Iwata wants to assure us that Nintendo has no desire to exploit its customers with DLC.

In an interview with Kotaku, Iwata emphasised that it isn't the company's intention to make players feel "cheated or deceived" by game add-ons. Nintendo aims to offer new content that will motivate players to enjoy their games for longer. And there'll be no skimping on the initial core packages — Nintendo still wants to create full games, not intentionally hold parts back to sell later, with the belief that such a model might discourage game purchases.

And one thing Nintendo has determined as a company policy, what we are not going to do is create a full game and then say, ‘let's hold this back for DLC.' That's not our plan. We're definitely not doing that. It's an extreme example, but I think there are examples of games where you get that initial purchase — the very core part of the game — and everything else around it is all DLC. However, if you do that I believe customers will have no motivation to go out and buy the retail package to begin with.

New Super Mario Bros. 2 will be among the first Nintendo games to offer paid downloadable content in the future, with additional Coin Rush levels planned.

[via kotaku.com]

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User Comments (61)

Cipher

#6

Cipher said:

Having played a fair bit of New Super Mario Bros. 2, I can see where they're going with the paid add-on content. There are different "packs" of levels in Coin Rush mode, so by creating new levels and releasing them as packs, it allows for a bit more variety.

Tsuchinoko

#8

Tsuchinoko said:

I can vouch for this with Fire Emblem. The core game itself, with all the wireless connections with other players bringing in random map encounters, free DLC content through wireless including characters, about half a dozen extra maps, and weapons, the Gaiden chapters, and of course the core main chapters, this game is nice and full. The paid DLC is fun, and adds nice padding to the experience, but definitely not needed to enjoy the game. I'm really happy with it, so much so that I eventually did buy a few of the packages, but not all. I feel like its all just bonus. :)

BigBluePanda

#12

BigBluePanda said:

This will be fine, as the Coin-Rush levels are simply an add-on and not a necessity to the main game, purely an extra option if you choose.

Haxonberik

#13

Haxonberik said:

I hope they stay true, ehhemm.. Capcom ...ehemm, because held back DLCs suck and they have actually made me skip some games.

Xilef

#15

Xilef said:

@Tsuchinoko This, including the way they are handeling NSMB2 DLC, are making me posetive about Nintendos future with DLC. :)

Tsuchinoko

#16

Tsuchinoko said:

@Xilef I'm quite happy with it, and they offered up plenty of free stuff in the wireless connections that already plenty of free content is added to the game. Plus there were plenty of discounted (or limited time free) DLC in Fire Emblem and Theatrhythm.

Dizzard

#17

Dizzard said:

@47drift

I would imagine Animal Crossing is one of the more obvious choices for DLC though. I just hope they won't get all mmo cash shop on us and sell every item/clothing individually though for 2-5 euros each. That would really suck.

Xilef

#18

Xilef said:

@Tsuchinoko What kind of free content is there? Edit: Ops, forgot you already mentioned that.

Man, i really hope all of the extra wireless content for FE makes it into EU.

grumblegrumble

#19

grumblegrumble said:

I absolutely hate the idea of paying $40+ tax for a new game and having to shell out more $$$ later for unlockable levels. That's a shame to me. They should offer them up for free. $40 in this economy for one game is way too much for many families out there, including my own. (But I will still buy NSMB2 at some point, just not soon.)

grumblebuzzz

#22

grumblebuzzz said:

@47drift I wouldn't mind if they continued to release free DLC items in Animal Crossing at all. I wouldn't, however, want to pay like 5 bucks for a new furniture set.

C-Olimar

#23

C-Olimar said:

Nintendo have always given away Animal Crossing DLC. I hope they don't start charging for it now.

Undead_terror

#24

Undead_terror said:

Its all the same to me, would of been better if there was a level maker and you can share it free with other people.

CrispyGoomba

#25

CrispyGoomba said:

They're still giving away DLC for Animal Crossing: City Folk for free...but it's just one item a month. I don't want to pay .99 for something as small as furniture. Maybe a full set, but still that's only like 10-15 pieces.

SkywardLink98

#28

SkywardLink98 said:

I think DLC should be priced according to the game's depth, so take for example Super Mario 3D Land which has 16 worlds at $39.99 which comes out at roughly $2.49 a world and I think that's what new worlds should be as DLC.

sinalefa

#29

sinalefa said:

I do agree with him. I know I was not the only one who did not buy SF x Tekken after it was discovered that they said: "create a full game and then say, ‘let's hold this back for DLC.'

It is nice to hear that they will not do that, and that the extra parts are just optional things like new coin rushes instead of brand new levels.

MrWalkieTalkie

#30

MrWalkieTalkie said:

To keep Animal Crossing fresh they should release new sets of furniture, clothes, and town decorations every season, or at least every year, either way I would be happy.

Monsti

#31

Monsti said:

Right now everyone in the gaming world is complaining how far behind Nintendo is but give it 2-3 more years and everyone will wish more companies would be like that.

ueI

#32

ueI said:

@Tsuchinoko You guys got discounted theatrhythm DLC? Does Square-Enix plan for that in North America as well? Because I will have to take advantage of such a sale if it is offered to us.

Mr-DNA

#33

Mr-DNA said:

I hate to be a downer, but this all just seems like semantics to me. Whether a company holds something back for DLC or creates it later, it's still another cash transaction. The latter is definitely the lesser of two evils. Maybe I'm just old-fashioned, but I would just as soon have no new content at all than pay for extras for fear that I'm "missing out."

hydeks

#34

hydeks said:

I like the idea of DLC, but it has to be DLC that's definitely worth the price. So far I have to say most companies have been ripping people off, I think the most fun and well worth it dlc I have downloaded is Borderlands so far :P

nfzeta007

#38

nfzeta007 said:

@Mr-DNA This is a dangerous slope in terms of thinking, excluding stuff that other people may want for the purpose of perceived equality, as long as the DLC is not needed and is fairly priced and doesn't seem like something they could have just given for free or given at launch then its okay to try to expand or lengthen a game with further content, and have the customers choose whether or not they want to pay for it, once you can produce a game that people can play to the end and think they got their money's worth then adding to that game within reason isn't a bad thing and in fact can be encouraged.

19Robb92

#40

19Robb92 said:

Unless they offer somewhat big packages of content I'm not likely to buy DLC anyway (unless the game is named Super Smash Bros.).

I'm not paying for new coin rush stages in NSMB2 or characters in Fire Emblem. A whole new World on the other hand with several new levels and star coins. That I can see myself paying for.

Chris720

#42

Chris720 said:

I have hopes, Nintendo hasn't failed us thus far, but we still have several years before Ninty might step back and say: "Y'know what, hold half of the game back and let's make them pay for the other half."

So far, I'm quite happy though. Square Enix's Thearhythm DLC has been fine at 90p a song and it's not exactly needed, because without it you still have a tonne of stuff to do but it's nice to have it there for when you want to play/learn a new Final Fantasy song.

Tsuchinoko

#43

Tsuchinoko said:

@ueI Just like with Fire Emblem, Theatrhythm had a price cut for the initial DLC here in Japan for a time right after the game's release. It was cut from 150yen to 100 yen per download.
Fire Emblem had the Marth download completely free for a while (which I got! :) ) and one of the new download packages recently got a price cut as well.

Haywired

#44

Haywired said:

I would like to see a DLC level in NSMB2 similar to the last secret level in Super Mario World where it spelt out "YOU ARE A SUPER PLAYER" in coins, but it should say "YOU ARE A SUCKER" in coins, thus encapsulating the true spirit of DLC!

Only joking... But anyway, as I've said before, I don't like DLC; I'm more than satisfied with the amount of content in video games these days and when I finish a game I like to move onto a new one rather than being tempted back to play the same one forever because it keeps bloody expanding. It seems DLC has just taken the age old video game staple of unlocking stuff and monetized it.

Chunky_Droid

#45

Chunky_Droid said:

"However, if you do that I believe customers will have no motivation to go out and buy the retail package to begin with."

  • THIS... this is especially true for just about every game that comes out with a GOTY or special edition 5 months later at the same price with ALL DLC AVAILABLE, nothing worse!

However, if no special edition down the track, DLC that adds something extra down the track if you want it, but isn't necessary to the experience = fine

Paying 2 bucks so that John Marsten can ride a black horse or wear a scarf = stupid

JayceJa

#47

JayceJa said:

this isnt news.
anyone who didnt expect this from nintendo doesnt give them enough credit

Tsuchinoko

#48

Tsuchinoko said:

Like it has been said before, the 3DS games with paid DLC so far have all been really amazing experiences without the DLC. None of it is really needed for the game itself. I don't mind if a game is expanding, if it is a game that is worth it, and I think that Fire Emblem is one of those games. But I still think with all the extras that are already available for free without paid DLC, the game itself plus those free extras give an amazing experience.

Tsuchiya

#49

Tsuchiya said:

Quite frankly, if it isn't Bethesda providing DLC then I won't go anywhere near it. :)

TruenoGT

#50

TruenoGT said:

Having a ton of DLC definitely can impact initial purchases because if you wait 6-12 months after a game comes out, a lot of times you can pick up the "ultimate" version that includes all the DLC for like $20. It's like you're penalizing early adopters who are the folks that really supporting the publishers/developers. I'm interested in getting Theatrhythm Final Fantasy, but it wouldn't surprise me if there was a super special version that includes every DLC track down the road... I'll just pick that up while I'm playing the enormous backlog of other $15-20 games I own!

NintendoMaster

#51

NintendoMaster said:

They better mean that all DLC for Fire Emblem that has reached Japan will be included in the game when it hits here next year right? Since that content has already been created it would go against Iwata's word not to do so.

WaxxyOne

#53

WaxxyOne said:

If any company could be trusted to handle DLC properly, it would be Nintendo. However, I'm still wary in large part due to the fact that they let Square/Enix create the most abominable DLC cash-cow for the WiiWare service that I've ever seen. Creating an RPG and then releasing the second half as DLC, as well as the side-quests of all the major characters as a DLC each, is just an insulting move. I know Nintendo was trying to court them back at the time, but I still would have hoped they would tell them exactly where they could shove that purchase model.

Chunky_Droid

#54

Chunky_Droid said:

@WaxxyOne: It probably isn't in Nintendo's best interest to tell 3rd parties what to do with their DLC, since neither Sony nor Microsoft seem to.

TeeJay

#55

TeeJay said:

Hasn't Nintendo already said this several times? I mean, if they aren't lying or anything, it's definitely a good thing.

But now they're just repeating themselves.

LittleKing

#56

LittleKing said:

@nintendomaster That's an interesting point, but he didn't really mean it that way, so I wouldn't hold it against him if we had to pay for it just like the Japanese did.

Not adding content which was made after the game's initial creation into the localized version isn't the same as withholding content that was/should've been created during the original development. The game's just being localized into English, I see no reason why they should add all of the DLC thus far as it isn't core content that was withheld; an extra is an extra, no matter when it was initially released. Iwata's viewpoint is basically that a game should be solid and complete without DLC, and DLC should just round out the package for people who want that little extra bit of oomph.

They won't be taking core elements of games that should've been in the game to begin with and charge for them, but content built from the ground up, intended fully from the beginning as DLC, can still be justified as DLC in the localized version of the game.

Henmii

#58

Henmii said:

So those level-packs will be for coin-rush mode? In that case I'll think I'll pass! But it also depends on the price! Knowing Nintendo, it won't be cheap!!

UnseatingKDawg

#59

UnseatingKDawg said:

Hmmm... Due to Nintendo's pricing on first party, I'd have to agree with Henmii. It's most likely not going to be cheap. But, I'm sure Nintendo knows what they're doing. I'll just say this to you, Nintendo: Keep your word, lest you want to lose a crapload of fans. Keep the DLC like the Guitar Heros and Rock Bands. Not required, but nice to add-on.

Trikeboy

#60

Trikeboy said:

How cool would it be for Nintendo to release a new, 100% finished Zelda game, main quest and side missions included, then a few months down the line add in more side quests you can do. Think of the large but empty open world from Twilight Princess and suddenly finding a character walking around or a new door opening up in Castle Town. That would be awesome.

DrDaisy

#61

DrDaisy said:

Call me pessimist if you must, but I seriously don't expect this decision to last. It's just way too tempting these days to exploit your customers.

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