Kingdom of Amalur: Reckoning online pass is 'fan reward,' studio head says

By Steve Watts, Jan 30, 2012 5:45pm PST

Online passes are a staple of the games industry, and we can expect more and more games--regardless of multiplayer functionality--to take advantage of content that is locked via DLC. Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, an exclusively single-player experience, has a number of quests locked behind an online pass, which has some fans up in arms.

Developer 38 Studios' founder Curt Schilling has chimed in about the controversy, saying the intent is to "promote early adopters" and "reward fans and gamers who commit to us with their time and money when it benefits the company."

"Day 1 DLC, to be extremely and vividly clear, is free, 100% totally free, to anyone that buys a new copy of Reckoning," Schilling said on the Reckoning forums.

"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," he said. "There is no nefarious attempt to do anything under handed here."

Many Shackers, including SinisterInfant, support the move, largely aimed at preventing used game purchases. "I don't see the problem. You get more game if you buy it new. They aren't penalizing used game purchaser's they have provided incentive to buy new."

This is similar to the recent controversy over the Catwoman downloadable content in Batman: Arkham City, which was also single-player DLC. In that case, some fans felt betrayed by the content being such a large part of the marketing message, as opposed to these quests that were never particularly hyped before. However, the hardest-hit will be the players who don't have an online connection, which is probably the reason they'd want to pick up a large-scale single-player game in the first place.

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