Season Passes are certainly taking over the gaming industry, with nearly every major release announced to have its own variation. Today, new passes were announced for both Sunset Overdrive and LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham, joining a long list of other DLC deals offered by this holiday season's lineup of games.
For Sunset Overdrive, the pass will include two campaign mode Add-ons (each with new stories, weapons and character outfits) and a third Add-on with four unique weapons. The Pass will also include six character outfits, two Amps and two Traps to be unlocked when the game is released. Priced at $19.99, the Season Pass will save players 20% off the individual price of each pack.
While the Lego games have enjoyed DLC release before, LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham will be the first time the franchise has had a Season Pass. Priced at $14.99, the Pass will include six packs of DLC each worth $2.99. Three of these packs were outlined in the announcement.
The Dark Knight Pack includes a level based on the police escort chase scene from The Dark Knight, and new playable characters from the Christopher Nolan film trilogy, including Batman, Commissioner Gordon, Bane and Catwoman. The Man of Steel Pack features a level set on Krypton as Jor-El tries to send his infant son into space, while the Batman 75th Pack includes many new playable characters, such as the Joker and Harley Quinn. All three packs will be available when the game releases on November 11, 2014, in the US, prompting the question: why isn't this additional content part of the regular game?
These announcements continue the proliferation of the Season Pass concept across all levels of the video game industry. Destiny, released earlier today, has a Season Pass, as do many of this fall’s biggest releases, including Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and Assassin's Creed Unity.
Prospective players will be happy to see that the exact content available to Season Pass holders isn't a mystery at launch. Instead, both Microsoft and Warner Brothers have outlined the exact content being purchased. Of course, if more DLC content is released for either of the games, there's no guarantee Season Pass holders will get a reduction in price. And given the content of these DLC packs, it seems entirely possible that the games will release more than the DLC packs which a Season Pass would entitle a player to.
Since LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham promises six downloadable packs with this announcement, it is probably less likely that there will be content outside of the Season Pass (the studio's previous game, Marvel LEGO Super Heroes released only two downloadable bundles). However, in this case, there are other concerns about this trend. The Marvel DLC was only $1.99 each, and came with eight playable characters. The new Batman DLC is a little more expensive, even though the Season Pass is advertised as a way to save money.
Then again, the three announced packs also come with playable levels, which may justify the price increase over the previous game. Whether the three other packs will have similar value remains to be seen.
Are you excited to buy the Season Passes for either Sunset Overdrive or Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham? Are you a fan of Season Passes in general or do you see them as a potential problem in the industry?
Sunset Overdrive will be available for the Xbox One on October 28, 2014. LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham will be released on November 11, 2014 for iOS, Microsoft Windows, Nintendo 3Ds, OS X, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Wii U.