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Dead Space 3 dev on microtransactions: players “need instant gratification”

Friday, 25 January 2013 12:14 GMT By Dave Cook

Dead Space 3′s microtransaction store first surfaced via this photo and with it, a torrent of complaints from gamers followed. Visceral stepped in to say that the payments were not boosters, but time savers. Now the studio has discussed the payment model in more detail in a new interview, saying that it gives players “instant gratification.”

Speaking with CVG, Visceral’s John Calhoun said, “Not much has been spoken about that, but I can tell you the details now. The way the micro-transactions work, is that there’s only three things that you can buy, and they’re basically tiers of different resources. Resources are extremely valuable in Dead Space – we got rid of credits entirely.

“Everything that you can find in the game can be constructed from resources, which includes Tungsten, Semi-Conductors, Somatic Gel. Combining these in different ways will create either a weapon part, an ammo pack or an upgrade to Isaac’s suit.

“There’s a lot of players out there, especially players coming from mobile games, who are accustomed to micro-transactions. They’re like “I need this now, I want this now”. They need instant gratification. So we included that option in order to attract those players, so that if they’re 5000 Tungsten short of this upgrade, they can have it.

“There’s also the hardcore Dead Space players, who are reluctant to spend money outside the purchase of the game. Honestly, most of the dev team are that way, we’re kind of old school, a little bit older. So not only are the micro-transactions completely optional, but all packs are available to purchase using in-game resources that you find.

“So, your scavenger bot will go out, and sometimes when he comes back he’ll deliver ration seals. You’ll start to accumulate ration seals at a pretty steady clip throughout the game, and everything that can be purchased with real world dollars can also be purchased with ration seals.”

What to you think gamers? Should those accustomed to the mobile payment model mind-set be catered for in home console games too, or is this developers finding out how to squeeze more pennies from your pockets? Let us know below.

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18 Comments

  1. Gareth Harmer

    I think it entirely depends on how it affects gameplay. If you can progress comfortably without needing to buy resources, even if it involves having to think carefully about upgrades etc, then great. If your choices are either grinding out resources for hours, or shortcutting it and hitting up the store, then there’s a problem. Hopefully the reviews will highlight which end of the spectrum it lies.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. KAP

    I just like to say gamers getting bent out of shape over this clearly don’t understand this much.
    Just being I love videogames doesn’t automatically mean I have the same amount of time to put into games as the next person, it’s tough to still be a gamer with responsibility, kids, bills, mortgage etc etc. So it’s just a barrier of entry for those like me to get in on the fun too.

    I used to feel like these microtransactions used to be for noobs but you soon realise that when you don’t have the time you won’t play many games because of what time they require off you to enjoy said game.

    Besides the dev have come out and said this isn’t a ploy to get more money off folk just a way to gain loot you otherwise don’t have the time to farm for.

    Just my two cents before the usual “this is dumb” starts flooding the comment section.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Paranormal Pett

    Isn’t it better to have an option there for those who want to use it, and if you fall into the category of not wanting to use it, then it will not affect you. If the game forces you to grind out these resources, then I will have a issue, and it will soon come to light that it is just a way to make more money from us. I really hope that who ever does a review on this will let it be known how easy the resources are to come by.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. absolutezero

    I would personally like this shit shoved out onto the main fucking menu instead of completely breaking the 4th wall by popping up in the middle of gameplay.

    Its fucking horrible. Why bother building atmosphere and tension when its going to be broken when you go to use an in-game terminal?

    BUY BUY BUY EA DOLLA DOLLA ORIGIN SIGN IN PASSWORD

    #4 2 years ago
  5. freedoms_stain

    Ugly justification.

    Does this instant gratification he’s on about go hand in hand with financial expenditure?

    Why are we paying for cheat modes now?

    How many micro-transaction games on mobile cost £39.99 to buy?

    #5 2 years ago
  6. DaveDogg

    those complaining about this need to take a chill pill. its been done with most of the EA sports titles for years. there was outrage when folk heard about it in ME3 but next to silence after the title came out. it was in NFS if folk want to use it they will. and to be honest your paying for the resources from what I can make out not guns and on my first playthrough of the demo I found it very easy to screw a gun up. final thought after several years of doing it they know the market is there they are just catering to the people that want it

    #6 2 years ago
  7. ps3fanboy

    @2

    if you don’t have the time then you don’t have the time, it is that easy. only idiots pay for this, that don’t see the long time effect of this shit. you have ruin the game for the rest of us.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. theevilaires

    Played the demo last night and Co-op with a random person and both versions were quite enjoyable. I don’t know whether I want to play single player or Co-Op first when I get this game but Co-op was so smooth. Can definitely see myself beating this in one sitting on a Saturday night or Sunday.

    Also hot tip. I have my PS3 tethered to my EVO wirelessly in my office and Co-Op was super smooth no lag at all. I’m going to get the collectors edition of this game because I really enjoyed it unlike Metal Gear Raiden demo.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. SplatteredHouse

    “So, your scavenger bot will go out, and sometimes when he comes back he’ll deliver ration seals.”

    This is the part where I ready to call foul. They team you up with a gathering bot? D: Next, every third time it returns it will be set to deliver a voiced sponsor message. FFS…

    In no way am I opposed to accessibility (very much the opposite, actually), but I do think it should be done with some thought to the intended play experience. If it turns out that the game was designed in line with this: “Dead Space 3′s entire currency and weapon system has been dramatically altered, now cynically designed to support its own little economy, and that wasn’t an option.”
    http://www.destructoid.com/dead-space-3-has-microtransactions-because-mobile-gamers-243152.phtml
    …Well, we’ll see once the embargo lifts.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. SplatteredHouse

    @5: So right. That’s the irritating part of it. That this is NOT optional, for anyone that buys Dead Space 3. Not only is it not optional for the purchaser, but that person then muddies the water for everybody else who might have otherwise had a shot at the game. As soon as someone buys that game, they’ve made their vote.

    I don’t intend melodrama there, but I don’t believe I’m mistaken in that view. Since, the models are expanses apart between mobile (no/minimal upfront, microtransaction) and traditional platforms like PC/console. If you say “well, I will play at my own pace, and swear off the shop” it doesn’t make a spit of difference to EA. Because, EA’s model remains reliant on box/game sales. Mobile operators want you playing as long as possible, they want to sell you, as do their partners paying to sell to you. Outside of that space, the priority is getting paying patrons through the front gates.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. DSB

    It’s one thing to nickle and dime your customers, it’s quite another to break immersion in order to do it.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. sonny

    “There’s a lot of players out there, especially players coming from mobile games, who are accustomed to micro-transactions. They’re like “I need this now, I want this now”. They need instant gratification. So we included that option in order to attract those players, …”

    Yeah, why not jump on the bandwagon that goes straight down the drain?
    These are sad times we live in…

    #12 2 years ago
  13. TheWulf

    I’m old enough to remember cheat codes. I don’t think we had to pay for those, did we?

    Thought Exercise: I wonder if using a hacked save which starts you out in a new game with all of this stuff unlocked will result in an Origin-wide ban?

    #13 2 years ago
  14. sonny

    @13 Well, before the internets we had to buy those magazines to get the cheats but mostly we didn’t have enough money and ended up in one fella keeping the watch and the other kids writing down the cheats on their muddy hands ;)

    #14 2 years ago
  15. DSB

    @14 Or call hotlines, or send for mailorder guides :D

    We also had to read the manual to find out how anything worked… God, the 90′s sucked.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. Sublimeone

    @ DSB, I disagree, the 90s rocked HARD. Reading those manuals, was like already playing the game – in your head (lol) over and over. Omg, then you read the manual again from page one.

    Good times.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Telepathic.Geometry

    This is obviously a fucking disgusting filthy cash grab. The game is essentially survival horror, so the fun is to be had in NOT having enough resources.

    But, even if you accept that some people want to get lots of resources immediately, just give it to them at a reasonable price, which is to say, free, considering it didn’t cost a lot of money or take a lot of time to write those 7 odd lines of code;

    Obviously, this doesn’t affect me per say, as I will never buy this kind of shite, but it’s a slippery slope. I mean, now the game publishers have an actual financial interest in making gathering resources in the game that little bit more tedious, laborious, difficult, unenjoyable.

    That can’t be good for the game, even if the devs are trying to be honest, they’re never gonna be able to say “Hey, we decided that gathering resources is no fun, so we’re just gonna give everybody heaps in the beginning. Please scrap that free money scheme you had there!”

    Also, I have a fundamental problem with any business not satisfied with making a reasonable profit margin with their customers. This is fleecing plain and simple. They’d get me too if they could. Sickening…

    #17 2 years ago
  18. Telepathic.Geometry

    It’s not quite a furor yet. Not too many gamers seem to give a shit. :(

    #18 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    Evolve’s fourth monster, the Behemoth, as well as the four new hunters are shown off in new gameplay video. Evolve’s latest gameplay trailer gives everyone a good look at each of the four new hunters and the massive Behemoth monster. The hunters can be bought either separately or though the hunting pass, while the monster […]

  • PS4 firmware update 2.50 causing issues with Killzone: Shadow Fall

    The suspend/resume feature in PlayStation 4′s 2.50 firmware update is causing some issues with Killzone: Shadow Fall. Killzone: Shadow Fall developer Guerrilla has said that the game is experiencing some issues in some instance where the suspend/resume feature is used. The timing of when players put the game in suspend mode does have an effect, […]

  • Bungie on Destiny matchmaking: “We believe there’s no substitute for a pre-made team”

    Crazy though this may seem, it’s possible that Destiny shipped according to plan. History points to community as a crucial component, far from the contingency that many now suspect. Paul Davies spoke to Bungie for clarity. “The community always engineers the best solutions for bringing players together. While Matchmaking is a great resource for introducing […]

  • Bloodborne works with suspend/resume, but only offline

    PlayStation 4′s newly-added suspend/resume feature works with Bloodborne as you’d expect, but only while offline. PlayStation 4 received the long-awaited suspend/resume feature today as part of firmware 2.50, and people are starting to test it out with various games. Bloodborne does work with the feature, but only if you play offline. Playing online is arguably […]

  • This is what Crossy Road looks like in first-person

    Crossy Road is fun and addictive. But in first-person, it’s mostly frightening. YouTube user Andy Front Films likes Crossy Road so much he decided to show off what it would look like in first-person. If crossing roads quickly and watching around for cars and trains, all of this as the camera chases you felt intense […]

  • Take a small behind-the-scenes peek at Mass Effect 4

    BioWare cinematic director Ken Thain has given us a very slim look behind the scenes at some motion capture work from the upcoming Mass Effect game. The upcoming Mass Effect game, whether it ends up being called Mass Effect 4 or not, will most definitely incorporate some form of motion capture work. How do we […]

  • Borderlands: The Handsome Collection – 8GB day one patch on PS4, 16GB on Xbox One

    Day one patches for Borderlands: The Handsome Collection are pretty hefty. Both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of Borderlands: The Handsome Collection require players to download lots of gigabytes to make the experience as smooth as possible. The PlayStation 4 version has an 8.31GB day one patch. The Xbox One version however has […]

  • Get a PlayStation 4 with Bloodborne and The Last of Us for $435

    If you’ve been waiting for the perfect game to get to buy a PlayStation 4, there’s no better time than the present. Amazon is offering a good PlayStation 4 bundle at the moment. For $434.99, you get a PlayStation 4 console, The Last of Us, and Bloodborne. The Last of Us is of course the […]

  • Upcoming Battlefield Hardline patch to nerf the K10, buff battle rifles

    Battlefield Hardline’s first patch will focus on weapon balance and a few changes have been proposed. Battlefield Hardline lead multiplayer designer Thaddeus Sasser posted a few of the balance changes that the team is considering for the next patch. K10: reduce bullet damage to 33 Saiga and PTR: reduce recoil to bring more in line […]

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and a new Resident Evil game coming this year, according to research firm

    According to digital games analyst SuperData, a new Resident Evil game is due this fall and that this year’s Call of Duty is Black Ops 3. In its latest report on digital console games, research and analytics firm SuperData revealed that a new Resident Evil is coming this fall. “We anticipate this month’s downturn to […]

  • Bloodborne: you can add gestures to your messages

    As players get deeper into Bloodborne, they keep uncovering so many of its little new additions, including this one. Bloodborne, like all of the Souls games before it, allows players to leave messages for other players. These messages could be used to point players towards impending doom, treasure, or just be sarcastic and witty. What […]

  • PlayStation 4 firmware update 2.50 is now live

    PlayStation 4 firmware update version 2.50 has started rolling out. Reports are coming in saying that Yukimura, PlayStation 4′s firmware 2.50 has been made available to download. The update is clocking in at just 245mb, so get downloading. 2.50 brings with it many new additions, including the suspend/resume feature, backup and restore, accessibility options and […]

  • Harley Quinn DLC for Batman: Arkham Knight is a prequel

    Batman: Arkham Knight’s Harley Quinn pre-order DLC is set before the events of the main game, according to Amazon’s description. Today we learned a few details about the pre-order DLC for Batman: Arkham Knight, namely the Harley Quinn one. According to the description on Amazon, the DLC takes place in the lead-up to the events […]

  • Bloodborne Vicar Amelia summon mystery solved

    Bloodborne players unable to summon near Vicar Amelia: here’s your solution. Bloodborne’s secrets are unfolding by the hour as clever players piece together From Software’s cunning design. Yesterday we reported problems summoning in the Cathedral Ward, before the Vicar Amelia boss fight. It turns out this isn’t a bug – or if it is, it’s […]

  • Steven Spielberg will direct film adaption of Ready Player One

    Steven Spielberg will direct the film adaption of the sci-fi, virtual world, video game themed novel Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. Warner Bros. bought the rights to the film in June 2010 and hired screenwriter Zak Penn to rewrite the previous draft written by Eric Eason, according to Deadline. The book takes place in […]

  • Bloodborne players with PS4 headsets shouldn’t forget about the custom audio

    Here’s a friendly reminder for Bloodborne players with PS4 headsets: be sure to download the Headset Companion App from the PlayStation store if you haven’t already. As previously reported, the game supports a custom Bloodborne audio mode which can be uploaded. It contains custom audio created by developers specifically tuned to enhance the audio. This […]

  • EA explains why FIFA Ultimate Team transfer prices are now platform specific

    EA has posted a blog entry explaining its FIFA Ultimate Team transfer market price ranges which now include platform-specific pricing in order to best the coin sellers. EA said it has implemented the changes to FUT over the last several weeks because it should be “fair and fun for every player,” ultimately coming to the […]

  • Game of Thrones: Episode 3 – The Sword in the Darkness now available

    In case you forgot, Game of Thrones: Episode 3 – The Sword in the Darkness was released today. It is available on Mac, PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. The third episode releases on iOS devices and Android tomorrow, March 26. The Sword in the Darkness finds Asher Forrester heading to Mereen […]

  • Bloodborne players are already documenting their crazy antics

    Bloodborne has been available for almost two days now in North America, and already players are posting interesting clips and character customization choices for the game. Below are interesting takes on creating a character and videos of a frustrating death and another full of blood coming from a very painful place – monster or not. […]

  • FIFA Ultimate Team celebrates sixth year in existence with giveaways

    FIFA Ultimate Team is celebrating its sixth year in existence with special events running from today until March 29. According to EA, every FUT fan will be handed one free pack every day, and those who play at least one match in the FUT Birthday Cup will have a chance to win rare “tradable In-Forms” […]

  • Halo Online is a F2P PC game in development exclusively for Russia – video

    Halo Online is a free-to-play game which will launch this spring in Russia, and is in development with Saber Interactive. According the reveal event attended by IGN Russia, the game was designed to run well on lower-end PCs and runs on a modified Halo 3 engine. The game is set on a secret UNSC space […]

  • SteamWorld Dig Xbox One release expected in late May

    SteamWorld Dig is coming to Xbox One, developer Image & Form has announced. A firm release date hasn’t been announced, but the studio expects the title to arrive on the system in late May. “We’re preparing quite an elaborate Easter egg for the Xbox One version – a gaming thing that we really wanted to […]

  • SMITE celebrating first anniversary with a sale on skins, Ultimate God Pack

    Hi-Rez Studios is celebrating the first anniversary of SMITE with a sale. From today through Friday, March 27, the Ultimate God Pack, which includes all current and future Gods, will run you $19.99. Alll individual pre-launch skins are 50% off, and all Gem Packs will award bonus gems. In addition, from March 27-29, all SMITE […]

  • Borderlands 2 has sold around 12 million copies, says Gearbox

    Speaking with Microsoft’s Major Nelson in his podcast, Gearbox Software boss Randy Pitchford stated Borderlands 2 has sold somewhere around the 12 million mark. As of August 2014, it was announced by Take-Two in its financial report the 2012 game had sold-in 10 million units. Pitchford noted in the podcast he learned of the figures […]

  • Broken Age releasing on PS4 and Vita same day as Act 2 on PC

    Double Fine Productions has announced it will release Broken Age on the PlayStation Store next month. Act 2 will also be released on PC. The full Broken Age adventure will release on PlayStation 4 and Vita on April 28 in North America and April 29 in Europe. It features cross-buy and cross-save. Broken Age Act […]

  • Star Citizen earned another $1 million within two weeks – total hits $76 million

    Star Citizen continues its funding streak with backers pumping another $1 million into the game’s development in the last two weeks. The total earned for the space sim has now reached $76 million ($76,015,532 to be exact) with 851,395 backers contributing to the staggering figure. Star Citizen’s latest update was version 1.1 which included two […]

  • Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Battlefield: Hardline top Media Create charts

    Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Battlefield: Hardline were the big ticket debuts during the March 16-2 period in Japan, with each game claiming the top three slots on the Media Create charts, respectively. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD moved 92,094 on PlayStation 4, while Resident Evil Revelations 2 moved 73,373 units on […]

  • You can now learn English or Spanish on Xbox One with the Rosetta App

    Want to learn English or Spanish? Rosetta Stone has an App for that on Xbox One. According to the language teaching firm, Rosetta Stone’s Discover Languages, the new application teaches English and Spanish by way of immersive simulation. Users will virtually travel to learn vocabulary and grammar “necessary for real-world interactions.” Here’s how it works: […]

  • PayDay 2 and PayDay: The Heist have sold over 9 million units combined

    The PayDay franchise is a lucrative IP for Starbreeze and Overkill, as both games combined have sold over 9 million copies as of November 2014. The company has also sold over 8 million paid DLC packages since PayDay 2 was released in 2013 (via NeoGAF). In its Q2 half year report issued in February, net […]

  • Nintendo wants to “surprise” customers with NX, not expand upon existing hardware

    Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has firm wants to “surprise” players with its new NX system. Speaking in an interview with Nikkei, translated by Kotaku, Iwata wouldn’t go into details on the new system, but stated expanding on a current gaming system would be “dull.” “In the past few years, the idea of what [encompasses] a […]

  • Kojima Station show suspended

    In another episode in the the ongoing kerfuffle between Hideo Kojima and Konami, the publisher has suspended the Kojima Station web show. Recent tweets from the newly created Japanese Metal Gear Solid account confirm that Kojima Station will not be broadcast tomorrow, but would not provide a date for the next episode. The Tweets were […]

  • Watch Battle Royale for free this weekend on Xbox Live

    Square Enix is celebrating the launch of Final Fantasy Type-0 HD by offering Xbox Live members in the UK a free rental of Battle Royale. Starting Saturday, March 28 and through Sunday, March 29, Xbox Live members in the UK will be able to rent Battle Royale through the Xbox Video Store, for free. The […]

  • Bloodborne journal, part 1: managing anxiety on the path to the Cleric Beast

    Bloodborne is both like and unlike the Souls games. Brenna descends into Yharnam with reluctance and trepidation. Need help succeeding in Bloodborne? You need our Bloodborne walkthrough and boss guide. Bloodborne isn’t Demon’s Souls or Dark Souls. Let’s get that out of the way right off. I enjoyed both Dark Souls games, but it was […]