Sony Commits to Free Monthly DC Universe Online Content

By Steve Watts, Jan 14, 2011 11:00am PST The MMO market's saturation makes it difficult to find a foothold, so you have to respect Sony Online Entertainment for trying new things with DC Universe Online. The game eschews traditional fantasy settings, takes cues from action games, and even promises new content every month to resemble the release cycle of comic books. Now SOE president John Smedley is reassuring players that the monthly content will be both significant and free.

"After release you can expect patches from us with new content and all kinds of fun stuff on a monthly basis," Smedley said in an interview with Eurogamer. "We'll actually be doing some patches on a weekly basis if we spot any issues. But the plans are about a month out you can start expecting major pieces of content and major new features to come in." Among those features, Smedley promises "large new raids, new end-bosses to fight, new quests, new graphics, new features," and possibly new voices.

Since players will be paying a subscription fee, the monthly content patches won't cost extra ("Absolutely not"), but Sony is leaving room for other revenue generators in the future. "We will have a microtransaction marketplace demo on here, but for actual content, no. In the future we may have expansion packs, but if you're talking about the regular monthly patches then no, we won't be charging for those," he said.

Of course, the team to produce this content needs to remain fairly large--50 to 75 members, according to Smedley's estimates. Keeping the content flowing means keeping the staff, and that will require sales and subscriptions to continue paying the employees. If DCUO underperforms, we may eventually see the plans for regular content change.

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