Why Season Passes Suck & Have Gotta’ Stop
Fallout 4

Fallout 4 is going to be released on November 11. Well, hopefully it will. You never know with these things. Yet, despite the game being over two months away and isn't even heavily promoted yet with gameplay footage and demonstrations, Bethesda has gone out of its way to assure us that a $29.99 Season Pass will be available for the DLC.

This is a for a game that we don't even know that much about yet. No add-ons have been announced, or even discussed. Yet the company is all ready to sell us an additional $30 product to go with our $60 product.

If there was at least some sort of outline as to what that $30 would get us, such an announcement would be understandable. If Bethesda had come out and said there will be four add-ons, each with story content that will add at least 4 hours to the campaign, then fine. It could go ahead and announce a pass to get them together for a cheaper price.

But no, there's nothing like that discussing the add-ons, which won't even be released until 2016. Instead, Bethesda's official comment was, "Based on what we did for Oblivion, Fallout 3, and Skyrim, we know that it will be worth at least $40..." Sure, the company did good things for all of those games, but past goodwill can't be used as a tool to sell future content.

Plus, we have to consider what has happened with other recent titles that sold Season Passes and didn't deliver. I'm referencing Batman: Arkham Knight, of course. The game was $59.99, the bundle of add-ons was $39.99, and it wasn't worth the cost of admission. The additional adventures weren't as engrossing as the main game, especially the A Matter of Family pack, and the extra skins, Challenge maps, and Batmobiles left people wanting.

Fallout 4

Granted, it's practically guaranteed that Bethesda's Fallout 4 DLC will be better than the Batman: Arkham Knight add-ons. Still, the fact is that we don't know. I mean, Bethesda could temporarily go insane and we could see the current generation equivalent of Oblivion's Horse Armor.

This is why the hyping and presales of season passes isn't the best idea. Developers and publishers need to wait until a game is released and tell us exactly what will be in a season pass before they start promoting it. Even if it is a game like Fallout 4, which could very well turn out to be 2015's game of the year. Give people a chance to see substantial gameplay footage, maybe even try a demo or beta, and have an outline of what will be offered before trying to sell supplemental things.

Jenni Lada
Jenni Lada

Writing Team
Date: 09/10/2015

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