Titanfall's Zampella confirms paid DLC and season pass
It's 2014, which means an announcement that a game will contain DLC is almost as inevitable as news that a game will contain a "restore power to the elevator" section. In most cases, it's a given. In Titanfall's case, though, there's been a lot of speculation as to Respawn and EA's post-release content plan. The confusion was mostly caused when the official Titanfall twitter account mistook the term "Season Pass" for "Online Pass", claiming the game wouldn't have the former, when in fact it meant the latter.
In an interview with Gamespot, Respawn's Vince Zampella has clarified the situation. He explains that the game will receive paid DLC, and that Respawn will also release a season pass to bundle that content before release.
"We're going to do paid DLC, we're also going to do free updates," he said. "There are things we want in the game that we didn't get to ship in the final game. We'll add private matches and things like that for free." Essentially, it sounds like the usual multiplayer update plan. Features and upgrades are left as free updates, while new content becomes DLC.
"We're going to do a season pass, just because... if you buy it up front, you get a deal," he continued. "We're not doing microtransactions, so the season pass is just buy it up front and you get a better price."
I remain convinced that it's reckless to buy a season pass before a game's DLC has been created. As a content delivery system, DLC is just too varied and unpredictable to rely on. We're seeing quality micro-expansions more often, nowadays - everything from Borderlands 2's many mini-campaigns, to Crusader Kings 2's major new additional systems. The problem is that developers are just as likely to pull a Saints Row IV, offering a weak collection of missions that don't come close to the brilliance of the original game.
Even so, if a season pass remains available after the DLC is released, it's potentially a great deal. But it's a weird situation for a multiplayer game to be in - with a community that will fracture and tribalise around when and if its individual players buy the extra updates. This is all theoretical, of course, without knowing Titanfall's specifics. At least we know that it'll launch with a decent number of initial maps.