Why Exclusive Content is Poor Practice

Lately gamers have been seeing a lot of “special” or “exclusive” content, missions and games that come to a exclusive console first such as PS4 and Xbox One as a timed exclusive similar to Xbox One’s Rise of the Tomb Raider. E3 was filled with it, but this isn’t fan service for a certain console, it’s just a dumb practice imposed on gamers.

Console manufacturers have gotten heavily into the business of exclusive content lately, with major series like Call of Duty, Metal Gear Solid V, Assassins Creed, Batman Arkham Series, Destiny and many more. Most, if not all of the time, the content is used for the malicious purpose to influence customers to go out and buy the game on a certain system rather than the other. This is a marketing tactic that is used for third-party games; the companies couldn’t make them exclusives, so they instead pay to have extra exclusive system content in order to sway the consumer to buy on their console rather than their competitors.

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Usually this exclusive content ends up being lackluster at best, seeing as the content will not be seen by all gamers, just the ones that own a certain system. The content doesn’t get much time, effort or love, as it’s a quick gimmick that seems more appealing than it is since it’s exclusive content. Is there anyone who jumped for joy to hear that with the PS4 version of Assassins Creed Syndicate players will have the choice of playing as Jacob or Evie as you attempt to solve various crimes in the Dreadful Crimes missions?

So what is the big deal? The entire game you get to switch between the two characters, but when it comes to these Dreadful Crimes missions, Xbox One owners will most likely only be able to play as Jacob during this time. When publishers participate in marketing stunts like this, more than likely these missions will not be any good as publishers will not be putting their time and effort into this exclusive content as only a fraction of players who purchase their game will be able to actually play it.

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There is also the whole issue with timed exclusive content. Rise of the Tomb Raider is doing it in its entirety, Call of Duty does it with their map packs and its always happening with DLC on both consoles. For Xbox to get Tomb Raider months before PS4 owners is senseless, more than favorable and this is simply because it is more damaging to gamers. Companies are withholding games from our disc trays for the sake of making Xbox owners feel good about their purchase or vise versa and fuel their sales numbers in the long run.

Wouldn’t we as gamers rather have more time and effort put into our exclusive content? Wouldn’t we all rather have the game release during the same time frame instead of receiving it a few weeks or months before, in exchange for publishers and companies to focus on making the game itself that much better than having them spend less time on meaningless content that will not be any fun or game changing to begin with?

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Overall, this issue only harms gamers. This doesn’t affect the publishers and it sure doesn’t affect the corporate companies as all they are doing is putting out advertisements to influence future console owners to buy their console over the competitors. There might be some great exclusive content that was released somewhere at some time, but it is usually far and few between.