Bethesda’s Todd Howard feels developers walk a find line when it comes to releasing DLC: do it too soon, you alienate your customer base. Do it too late, you alienate your customer base.
Speaking in an interview with Joystiq at E3, Howard said the most important thing, when developing and releasing DLC, is striking a balance between quality and timing.
“There’s this weird line between – if you do DLC too early everyone’s pissed off. We have found, if you wait too long, they’re pissed off,” Howard said. “We have a very smart audience. We do feel the pressure to make sure it fits into the game smoothly.”
Howard said with Dawnguard, the team at Bethesda wanted to make sure the DLC didn’t take away from the players’ experience; therefore, they won’t be notified when the content is available. They must discover it for themselves once the update is patched.
“One of the potential negatives to like ‘Joe Consumer’ is they’ll buy it, they’ll load up Skyrim, they’ll be like, ‘Where is it?’ Well, you gotta go find it,” Howard explained.
You can get the entire 11 minute interview through the link.
Dawnguard releases on Xbox 360 June 26. Once the 30-day exclusivity period ends, PC and PS3 users can pick the content up. You can sign up to be a participant in the 360 beta here.