38 Studios' Curt Schilling has come forward to defend Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning's day-one DLC, available free to those who buy the game new or invest in EA's Online Pass.
As reported on Eurogamer, seven of the game's single player quests are locked off for new buyers and pass-holders. Responding to Amalur fan ire on the game's forums, Schilling declared: "DAY 1 DLC, to be extremely and VIVIDLY clear, is FREE, 100% totally FREE, to anyone that buys a new copy of Reckoning, ANYONE.
"If you don't buy new games you buy them used, and in that case you will have to pay for the Day 1 free DLC content the new copy buyers got for free.
"It's clear the intent right? To promote early adopters and MUCH MORE IMPORTANT TO ME, REWARD fans and gamers who commit to us with their time and money when it benefits the company."
Incentives to buy new are necessary to ensure 38's future, he wrote. "Every single person on the planet could wait and not buy Reckoning, the game would hit the bargain bin at some point and you could get it cheaper. 38 Studios would likely go away.
"That's just how business works. We MUST make a profit to become what we want to become. THE ONLY way we do that is to make games you CANNOT WAIT TO BUY! If we do that, and you do that, we want to reward you with some cool free stuff as a thank you.
"You can TOTALLY disagree with this and I am sure many do, so we'll agree to disagree. This is not 38 trying to take more of your money, or EA in this case, this is us REWARDING people for HELPING US! If you disagree due to methodology, ok, but that is our intent."
"The industry is in a very odd place," Schilling noted later. "The data coming in on used game sales is not saying the things many thought it should, or would. But companies are still trying to figure out how to receive dollars spent on games they make, when they are bought.
Is that wrong? If so please tell me how."
"Again, you can argue with methods, or process, and you absolutely can bitch and gripe about ANY DAY 1 DLC you are charged for, because I think I agree with many on that, but we are trying to create something here, product and company wise, and it takes dollars to do that," he concluded.
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is out in the US on 7th February and in Europe on 10th February. We think Fable fans will like it. Executive designer Ken Rolston thinks the game's combat system is streets ahead of Skyrim's.