Phil Robb of Turtle Rock responds to criticism of DLC, pre-purchase options

Evolve mosnter

A number of gamers eager to purchase Evolve, the upcoming multiplayer monster hunting game from Turtle Rock Studios, were unhappy to see the announcement of DLC prior to the game's February release, expressing annoyance at an increasingly common practice: a number of different pre-purchase package options and prices, with one running as high as $100.

After a fan appealed to the developers for straight-up "no bullshit" answers on their boards, Phil Robb, co-founder of Turtle Rock Studios, attempted to explain the reasoning behind the announcement of DLC and the different buying options.

In regard to the extra hunters and monsters that come with the purchase of a season pass, Robb states this was not a case of simply finishing everything and then carving off chunks to sell separately.

"When Evolve hits the shelves, none of the DLC will be done. Behemoth won't be done. None of the planned DLC hunters or monsters will be done."

"As we got closer to finishing Evolve we ended up with designs for a bunch of monster and hunters that we just didn't have the time and money to make. Instead of throw them all out, why not put together a budget to make them as DLC? Means more content for the people who love the game and want more. It also means all those ideas get to see the light of day."

In further defense of the additional content, Robb says that players will be still be able to play with others who have the extra hunters and monsters, stating "our number one rule for DLC is never split the community." Robb also insists they won't be making the DLC overpowered to make players feel pressured into buying it.

As for the array of different options to purchase or pre-purchase the game, its DLC, and bonus items, Robb points out that Turtle Rock is the developer, not the publisher (that's 2K Games), and states:

"Ultimately, TRS makes the games, we don't sell them...and as the developers we've done our best to make a game that people want to play. We then have to trust our publisher to make the best decision on how to sell that game. We've done everything we could to keep this stuff as open to choice as possible and despite how it may look to some, there isn't anything here that forces people to spend more money than they are comfortable with. We feel like all of the Evolve bundles that 2K announced just offer people choices, and having choices isn't a bad thing."

Here's a breakdown of the options. Let us know what you think of Evolve's DLC options and extras below.

  • Buy it when it comes out ($60)
  • Buy a season pass ($25)
  • Pre-purchase ($60) for a free copy of Left 4 Dead, the 2008 game developed by Turtle Rock and Valve.
  • Pre-purchase the $80 "Deluxe" version, which includes the season pass, monster expansion pack, and Left 4 Dead (the zombie game from 2008).
  • Pre-purchase the $100 "Monster Race" version that gives you all that stuff, plus a fifth playable monster, plus two more hunters, plus four new monster skins, plus the zombie game from seven years ago mentioned above (Left 4 Dead).
Christopher Livingston
Senior Editor

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.