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The new ARMA 3 DLC system - debate

Do you think the new DLC system is a good idea?  

399 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you think the new DLC system is a good idea?

    • Yes
      180
    • No (try to post why and how it should look)
      23
    • No - I prefer Arma 2 system
      196


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I love a good controversy. Cynical doomsayers everywhere and fallacies by the pound. I'm not denying the existence of a problem here, but some people need to
. I doubt BIS is suddenly going to rebrand themselves as the next EA just because they're trying out a new DLC system.

We had more controversies that i bargained for : DayZ being a mod, DayZ being a game, ArmA3 being steam only, ArmA3 being set in near future, Workshop implementation, MANW contest, DLC system...

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I think it's funny. I look at all the agreements, and disagreements, and the selfishness starts to show. Look, from my point of view, i see; The news system works, or; the new system is terrible or; both systems are terrible. Ok, fine, scrap the systems. We'll just make it free. =)

No. That's not gonna happen. The DLC system is something they have probably been working on since before the Karts, which is just something they thought best to release as fund raiser, but also to test a way for us to experience a taste of content we don't own, but not enough to give you something, with you giving them nothing. Now some think BI are thinking with their wallet, but no. From a business standpoint, which is what BI is... it's 100% reasonable.

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I think it's funny. I look at all the agreements, and disagreements, and the selfishness starts to show. Look, from my point of view, i see; The news system works, or; the new system is terrible or; both systems are terrible. Ok, fine, scrap the systems. We'll just make it free. =)

No. That's not gonna happen. The DLC system is something they have probably been working on since before the Karts, which is just something they thought best to release as fund raiser, but also to test a way for us to experience a taste of content we don't own, but not enough to give you something, with you giving them nothing. Now some think BI are thinking with their wallet, but no. From a business standpoint, which is what BI is... it's 100% reasonable.

Exactly.

And as for the poll itself, there is no clear majority. Many people are voting for "go back to lite" which isn't an option, while very few have their own ideas. And to top it off, of course people will want the best thing for them. If there was an option to just give content out for free in the poll, I am sure that would be the most voted. Doesn't mean its what BI should do. All in all the poll doesn't mean much of anything.

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Exactly.

And as for the poll itself, there is no clear majority. Many people are voting for "go back to lite" which isn't an option, while very few have their own ideas. And to top it off, of course people will want the best thing for them. If there was an option to just give content out for free in the poll, I am sure that would be the most voted. Doesn't mean its what BI should do. All in all the poll doesn't mean much of anything.

Please explain why the lite model isn´t an option? Or a hybrid of both methods?

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Please explain why the lite model isn´t an option? Or a hybrid of both methods?

Because it didn't practically work. They we're basically giving it all away, except crappier quality, and a very small percentage of players bought the higher quality versions. It was also terrible for user feedback, because there was no way of knowing in game if something looked like that on purpose or was just bad looking, and not to mention i'm sure many players outright missed the fact that they were bad quality entirely, playing on lower settings and not looking too hard at the models.

No idea how a hybrid model would work really.

I think the new DLC model is fine, but I never play public games anyways, so there aren't really any drawbacks for me. I would prefer grouping the DLC into larger packs or full on expansions, rather than smaller bits, but It's still much better than the old system.

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Please explain why the lite model isn´t an option? Or a hybrid of both methods?

The entire reason this new model exists is that the Lite model did not work for BIS. I have first hand experience of this as well, and there's plenty of evidence to be found of players being totally ignorant of the existence of DLC and why the models were so low quality. A hybrid would have many of the same problems. A whole extra set of data to maintain (the low quality models, textures, sounds), players still would have a warped perception of quality (they are not necessarily going to try getting in every low quality vehicle they see, thus being unaware that it's low quality because of non-ownership) and their game is made ugly/inconsistent despite the fact that they aren't using the content they don't own.

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The entire reason this new model exists is that the Lite model did not work for BIS. I have first hand experience of this as well, and there's plenty of evidence to be found of players being totally ignorant of the existence of DLC and why the models were so low quality. A hybrid would have many of the same problems. A whole extra set of data to maintain (the low quality models, textures, sounds), players still would have a warped perception of quality (they are not necessarily going to try getting in every low quality vehicle they see, thus being unaware that it's low quality because of non-ownership) and their game is made ugly/inconsistent despite the fact that they aren't using the content they don't own.

Not to mention the fact that the advertising is one of the problems that many people have. For me, a hybrid model is the worst of both worlds.

I honestly think there needs to be a separate poll asking whether people have a problem with the content being locked or the advertising. It's not easy to come up with a better alternative when people are coming up with solutions to different problems.

Also, while I won't dispute that the Arma 2 method didn't perform to Bohemia's satisfaction, I don't understand the argument that keeps popping up that they would have to maintain two different sets of data. That doesn't make any sense. First of all, the difference is in the art, and how often does BIS update art assets? Secondly, I don't understand why they would need to data sets, anyway. The models weren't of lower quality and the textures were just forced to the lowest quality mipmaps. You don't have to create or maintain a separate set of data at all.

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Also, while I won't dispute that the Arma 2 method didn't perform to Bohemia's satisfaction, I don't understand the argument that keeps popping up that they would have to maintain two different sets of data. That doesn't make any sense. First of all, the difference is in the art, and how often does BIS update art assets? Secondly, I don't understand why they would need to data sets, anyway. The models weren't of lower quality and the textures were just forced to the lowest quality mipmaps. You don't have to create or maintain a separate set of data at all.

According to BIS, it is more work for them to have Lite versions in the game data as well as the high quality versions. And yes, there would have to be both in the game for everyone, in order to maintain the seamless purchases, which is objectively an improvement over Arma 2's way, and also to avoid countless "versions" of the game with different combinations of DLC.

I don't think the textures were just forced to lowest quality mipmaps. BIS said they created these textures (and sounds) with compression techniques. It wasn't happening on the fly with the high quality versions.

Edited by vegeta897

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There is basically no way around this. There is no way to sell small DLC in a way that will get a lot of sales and at the same time not fragment the community completely. While it might be less of an issue in free-roam coop missions where fairness and "play the mission as designed" is mostly ignored, once you start playing serious missions (pvp or even coop), the inconsistency in the experience between players who own the DLC to players who don't own the DLC will force mission makers to avoid using any DLC content. Since basically all viable multiplayer content is made by the community, if mission makers can't use the DLC without it ruining their mission, then there will be no reason whatsoever for anyone to buy the DLC.

Same as in A2:OA - The only people buying the DLC will be people who just want to give BIS some extra cash so that they don't go bankrupt and maybe fix another bug, and the only difference with ArmA 3 DLC (compared to A2:Oa) will be that even less people will actually play with it in multiplayer missions.

OA was pretty decent in the sense that it was big enough of an improvement to be a "must-have" to anyone who cares about the game. I think this is the only valid direction BIS can take. However, the kinds of improvements that were added in OA would probably not be up to par nowadays to justify buying another expansion. It would take a much more significant package for it to be a "must-have" so that just about anyone still playing will buy it. But IMO that's the only way they'll actually sell something to people who actually buy it to play with it, and not just to people who buy it as a donation to BIS.

Edited by galzohar

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I think you're on to something.

Keep the "features are free" concept, but avoid any DLC. Put all DLC content into the expansion content. That way, you may not need the expansion to get the new features, but it will have so much content that many people will purchase it, probably far more than anyone would buy any one DLC. A new map, tons of new vehicles and weapons... I think many would have purchased OA even without its new features.

But I'm afraid it's too late for that...

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Eh, the pricing thing isn't really the way it works out in practice. It's the reason that we have DLC in the first place. You can sell Marksmen, Helos, Tanks, UAVs, and Jets DLCs for like $8-10 each. Include all that in one package and it's a lot of content, but people won't expect to pay more than $30 for it.

Besides, I think the best we can hope for is tweaking the current formula to be as acceptable as possible to as many people as possible, which I think is totally doable.

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Not being able to get into DLC vehicles as driver/pilot at all is obviously the biggest issue here, so perhaps BI should simply "soften up" that restriction. My idea:

Instead of locking non-DLC owners out of the driver position entirely (thus potentially breaking a mission), open up the same DLC dialog that normally pops up, but add a countdown timer to it. Perhaps the first get-in could be "free" (zero countdown), but as the mission progresses the timer starts increasing in certain increments. Perhaps 5 seconds every ten minutes or something, so after an hour of game time the non-DLC owners would have to stare at the dialog for 30 seconds before being able to drive the DLC vehicle.

Before anyone jumps down my throat, I realize that this is still far from ideal and may still inconvenience other players, but at least it's downgraded from a potentially mission-breaking issue to a minor inconvenience.

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Lite version is not an option. Period :icon_twisted:

The reasons were stated in the blog, but to make it clear, if there was a lite version, there won't be any kind of development branch, especially not with the daily updates. Preparing data for publishing the lite version takes a day of work, which simply isn't compatible with daily updates for obvious reason :icon_twisted:

It may seem strange, but our blog posts are sincere - when we say that lite approach has some issues data-wise and marketing-wise (game seen as a low quality one by people not knowing about Lite approach), it actually means that it does, not a bounce more, nothing less :bounce2:

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I would really prefer a hybrid out of both DLC systems.

That means: If you are not using the vehicle or if you just ride in back, it will keep the high quality look. And only if you have an important role that would be restricted with the new system the quality gets worse. But much worse than in Arma2's DLC system, for example by disabling the highest LOD's and massivly reducing the sound quality. And on the bottom right corner where usually the DEV branch text is could be a small message that this is DLC content.

This would combine the advantages of both systems: The content looks great if you dont use it and does not confuse new players (A3 DLC system). But at the same time you are able to use DLC content, so it would not split the community and allow mission makers to use DLC content (A2 DLC system).

This would be perfect in my opinion.

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Instead of locking non-DLC owners out of the driver position entirely (thus potentially breaking a mission), open up the same DLC dialog that normally pops up, but add a countdown timer to it. Perhaps the first get-in could be "free" (zero countdown), but as the mission progresses the timer starts increasing in certain increments. Perhaps 5 seconds every ten minutes or something, so after an hour of game time the non-DLC owners would have to stare at the dialog for 30 seconds before being able to drive the DLC vehicle.

So a helicopter comes to extract my team from a hot LZ. Pilot gets shot. None of us have a pilot's license so I get in the pilot seat and tell the guys: "Keep your head down for next 30 seconds while I study the user's manual on how to fly this thing!" You're right, that wouldn't be so mission breaking.

Or better yet; allow anyone to get in as pilot, show little non-distracting ads and message telling you that since you're not qualified to operate this chopper, you may experience terror of flying it unprepared; blurred vision, muscle tremors, inability to control it accurately, soil your pants, loss of hearing, accidental missile discharge etc.

:D

Edited by Greenfist

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Lite version is not an option. Period :icon_twisted:

The reasons were stated in the blog, but to make it clear, if there was a lite version, there won't be any kind of development branch, especially not with the daily updates. Preparing data for publishing the lite version takes a day of work, which simply isn't compatible with daily updates for obvious reason :icon_twisted:

It may seem strange, but our blog posts are sincere - when we say that lite approach has some issues data-wise and marketing-wise (game seen as a low quality one by people not knowing about Lite approach), it actually means that it does, not a bounce more, nothing less :bounce2:

Finally something. Lite discussion can be dumped down and let's focus on how to improve the current one if that's needed like MadDogX tried.

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So a helicopter comes to extract my team from a hot LZ. Pilot gets shot. None of us have a pilot's license so I get in the pilot seat and tell the guys: "Keep your head down for next 30 seconds while I study the user's manual on how to fly this thing!" You're right, that wouldn't be so mission breaking.

Let's be honest, a lot of mission makers put slot restrictions into place for pilots. There's a certain amount of authenticity to that.

Or better yet; allow anyone to get in as pilot, show little non-distracting ads and message telling you that since you're not qualified to operate this chopper, you may experience terror of flying it unprepared; blurred vision, muscle tremors, inability to control it accurately, soil your pants, loss of hearing, accidental missile discharge etc.

:D

And that is by far one of the best suggestions in this thread. That would be awesome! :D

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There is basically no way around this. There is no way to sell small DLC in a way that will get a lot of sales and at the same time not fragment the community completely. While it might be less of an issue in free-roam coop missions where fairness and "play the mission as designed" is mostly ignored, once you start playing serious missions (pvp or even coop), the inconsistency in the experience between players who own the DLC to players who don't own the DLC will force mission makers to avoid using any DLC content. Since basically all viable multiplayer content is made by the community, if mission makers can't use the DLC without it ruining their mission, then there will be no reason whatsoever for anyone to buy the DLC.

Same as in A2:OA - The only people buying the DLC will be people who just want to give BIS some extra cash so that they don't go bankrupt and maybe fix another bug, and the only difference with ArmA 3 DLC (compared to A2:Oa) will be that even less people will actually play with it in multiplayer missions.

OA was pretty decent in the sense that it was big enough of an improvement to be a "must-have" to anyone who cares about the game. I think this is the only valid direction BIS can take. However, the kinds of improvements that were added in OA would probably not be up to par nowadays to justify buying another expansion. It would take a much more significant package for it to be a "must-have" so that just about anyone still playing will buy it. But IMO that's the only way they'll actually sell something to people who actually buy it to play with it, and not just to people who buy it as a donation to BIS.

This

Lite version is not an option. Period :icon_twisted:

The reasons were stated in the blog, but to make it clear, if there was a lite version, there won't be any kind of development branch, especially not with the daily updates. Preparing data for publishing the lite version takes a day of work, which simply isn't compatible with daily updates for obvious reason :icon_twisted:

It may seem strange, but our blog posts are sincere - when we say that lite approach has some issues data-wise and marketing-wise (game seen as a low quality one by people not knowing about Lite approach), it actually means that it does, not a bounce more, nothing less :bounce2:

OK, I didn´t think about the daily updates, it makes sense now. So Lite is a no-go

But I really hope that you guys drop the functionality restrictions since they are the main problem of this new method. It would be great if you can somehow really enhance the sense of purchase (I´m really curious what you will come up with) and then drop the limitations.

But honestly your company should really think about making proper expansions instead of DLCs. I know it is more work, but I believe that the benefit to company and community both is worth it.

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But honestly your company should really think about making proper expansions instead of DLCs. I know it is more work, but I believe that the benefit to company and community both is worth it.

+1. What people want is content that missing to this game. Having to pay for every small amout of stuff into DLCs is fucking ridiculous. Come on BIS with all the stuff we use to have in ArmA 2 with high resolution, clean PhysX, full 3D vehicules interior, you've got my money right now.

Edited by Major_Shepard

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So a helicopter comes to extract my team from a hot LZ. Pilot gets shot. None of us have a pilot's license so I get in the pilot seat and tell the guys: "Keep your head down for next 30 seconds while I study the user's manual on how to fly this thing!" You're right, that wouldn't be so mission breaking.

No, it really isn't because you wouldn't have to wait 30 seconds - like I said, the first get-in should be "free". :)

My suggestion was constructed around the idea that occasional or incidental use of DLC content (like the scenario you mentioned) should be possible, but frequent use of DLC content would become less and less appealing because of the increasing delay. Perhaps I should have made that more clear.

Edited by MadDogX

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No, it really isn't because you wouldn't have to wait 30 seconds - like I said, the first get-in should be "free". :)

That doesn't bring my pilot back from the dead - the mission continues and we will need a pilot again. :) But yeah, I got what you meant. And that's not a bad solution in fact.

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Is it just me or has the debate already died...? Because we confirmed that the previous Arma 2 system will never return, and the new system is the best way to handle DLC without simply letting everyone have everything for free, which defeats the purpose.

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How come a "Lite" method needs separate data anyway? Couldn't they just lock the LOD/texture setting for the models in the "Lite" versions to a lower setting until you bought them?

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Sorry if its been suggested before, but I was just thinking. Maybe when Steam workshop supports mods, a lite equivalent could be released in the form of a mod. This way people have to make a concious effort to download it, and the lower quality can be explained/disclaimed in the description. Hopefully this wouldn't effect the Dev branch, and could be updated independently of A3 itself.

Probably a few reasons why it wouldn't work, but I thought I'd put it out there anyway. :)

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