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Would you pay for DLC?

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Since we have no idea what is going to happen past the timeline. All we know we have Finland and Sweden, and a handful of cars coming before Dirt Rally leaves early access. I personally would love to see it become a platform that is never "finished" and continues to evolve and add more and more content. But, I really don't see that happening so let's show the dev's we will support Dirt Rally post-release.

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Hey up sir, good initiative, but if you could add your own feelings and thoughts to that thread Porkhammer linked to it would be much appreciated. If we are going to price that it is or isn't worthwhile, we should try to keep all opinions in one place :)

Look forward to your views.

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griev0r said:
 I personally would love to see it become a platform that is never "finished" and continues to evolve and add more and more content.
so much this !
As much as i would love to see DR becoming a platform/service, its nearly impossible without a subscription based system. It needs to generate a constant flow of income in order to the cover the expenses needed to create new content after the game has been 'completed'. Even though many of us would be willing to pay for extra content, DR doesnt attract a large enough customerbase due to its hardcore nature. This will make it difficult to generate enough income for post release game development just by selling DLC.

Thats why most studios create DLC content during the development phase even though it wont be released until several months after the game has been released. Once a game is out, they move on to the next project (some even earlier) and only a small part of the dev team will continue on bug fixing. Its mainly the graphic artists and physics guys who will be assigned to new projects pretty quickly as they are not required throughout the whole development process of a game. 

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Woozie77 said:

As much as i would love to see DR becoming a platform/service, its nearly impossible without a subscription based system. It needs to generate a constant flow of income in order to the cover the expenses needed to create new content after the game has been 'completed'. Even though many of us would be willing to pay for extra content, DR doesnt attract a large enough customerbase due to its hardcore nature. This will make it difficult to generate enough income for post release game development just by selling DLC.

Thats why most studios create DLC content during the development phase even though it wont be released until several months after the game has been released. Once a game is out, they move on to the next project (some even earlier) and only a small part of the dev team will continue on bug fixing. Its mainly the graphic artists and physics guys who will be assigned to new projects pretty quickly as they are not required throughout the whole development process of a game. 
  If so, then why not opening up the track / map building tool to the Mod Crowd a while after release  ?
  Maybe worth to mention here , that I officially bought the PC Version of RBR only after I*ve seen youtube vids of the awesome Czech Rally stages for the RBR CZ Plugin, which was fully created by the Czech fan base, long after RBR was offiially released.    

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RBR didn't have any official track/map building tools either, those were created by its own community. What mattered though was that game was rather more open in how it was structured. File formats, etc.

If a game isn't build around the possibility of accepting modding, then it's a pretty big thing to insert. Even with a track building tool, unless the game knows how to accept the mods, they could only be used as replacements for existing tracks.
With DiRT Rally, we're at a point where we can't even add new liveries, only replace existing ones and even then we can't reflect that in the GUI.
@KickUp has talked about more files in DR becoming encrypted rather than the other way around, so modding probably isn't going to be the future lifeblood of DiRT Rally.

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BrySkye

With DiRT Rally, we're at a point where we can't even add new liveries, only replace existing ones and even then we can't reflect that in the GUI.
@KickUp has talked about more files in DR becoming encrypted rather than the other way around, so modding probably isn't going to be the future lifeblood of DiRT Rally.
  Now I understand , why the numerous fan request's  for more stages / stage creations haven' officially been commented that much.  Welcome to reality .  :/

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yeah, unfortunately more and more major dev studios and publishers move away from the whole modding idea by "locking down" their games, due to numerous reasons:

Economical:

* paid DLC: If the community can get quality mods for free, it will be difficult to sell new content (might not be the case with DR though as its uncertain if its ever gonna receive DLC)

* successor: many games are seeing a yearly successor nowadays, often with only minor changes compared to the prior title. Modding can cause a hit on the sales of the next iteration as people might not have any intention to buy a nearly identical successor if they can get season update mods for free

Fun fact: Leaked documents from Electronic Arts show that devs are running feature lists for the next 3-4 years, which means that even if a new, much requested feature is ready to be implemented, it might be held back just to add it to the successor and sell it as a groundbreaking new feature. EA even have been accused of intentionally removing existing features just to re-add them a few years later as a "new" feature. Publishers do everything to maximize sales. It would be bad for their cunning plan if a mod adds some of these features for free

Game content

* as mentioned by @BrySkye already, a game needs to be build around the possibility of allowing modding. Adding this feature later in the process might require more resources to be assigned during development

* QA and reputation: low quality mods might put a game into a bad light, especially with today's social media power. Also mods can cause new bugs and issues that might be difficult or not feasible for the devs to fix (usually only applies to deep level modding, not textures and stuff)

* reverse engineering: to protect their game code and to hide possible flaws in their game/physics engine

* licensing issues: some car makers demand games to be locked down to prevent that one of their cars gets modded into the game. There are two main reasons for this, Firstly, because a particular car might not be part of the license (it would also be a backdoor for devs to sneak in a unlicensed car) and secondly, because they are afraid that low quality mods of their cars might hit their reputation. Its not like many potential car buyers would base their decision on how a certain car drives in a game, but CI and PR people are generally very paranoid ;)

* the inhouse creative tools used to create content are often not made for public use. This would also require additional resources

* multiplayer: its difficult to ensure a fair multiplayer environment when mods are allowed. And it can also open doors for online cheaters




Just take Project Cars as an example: Its also pretty much locked down, even though it calls itself a "Community Assisted Race Simulation" and has been created by people who started their dev career as modders (like Ian Bell)

One positive example of a moddable AAA title would be the upcoming Fallout 4, where modding is even beneficial for the devs, as its not supposed to receive a yearly successor.In this case, mods will help to keep the game in peoples minds until Fallout 5 sees daylight a few years later

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You guys do realize the suggestion box has more to do with future titles than the current version.  Sure we are seeing some tweaks and smaller additions (force feedback was a major overhaul though).  But as much as we have ask for major things they're just going to happen here.

The current version is certainly being worked on for sure, but I THINK this is a bit of an experiment.  There is an awful lot of resources put into handling, which is good, but also a few other areas that are not so much content related.  EA is a major step for Codie's as well, perhaps this will continue with the following titles as well.  I am guessing that a lot of these will be foundations for the future and then only tweaks will be needed and content will take a little more prominent role. 

Another example is the reuse and tweaked version of the Grid Autodport ego engine.  Not to say the graphics are not good, actually very good!  It would be reasonable to think that the engine would be in need of an overhaul to support newer versions of directX and newer consol graphic technology.  I guess they did this with F1?  Not sure if I see a big improvement on F1 engine.  What I see a need for is the advancement in particle generation, as one example.  I am probably talking out of my Butt here, I know little about programming and the hardware tech available.

One thing I find interesting is there has been more than one occasion it was mentioned about their relative inexperience working on PC only titles and having to back and revise some areas.  For instance the force feedback they mentioned this, and one other place recently that I cannot think of right now.  Also the upcoming addition of mouse support, is a PC only feature.  My question is why would they put resources into these areas if they are mainly a console publisher? Are they working out this stuff for a bigger title? Some stuff to ponder on and gossip about.

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Woozie77 said:


Nice post, points sound logic to me.
  
But I'm afraid, hugely content demanding (more stages) games like Rally Games / Sims can only be kept alive on the long  run  if the game structure and compliance is set to let the modding community participate. RBR has shown a good pace here. No one would have played RBR so long only becaus of the nice physics. Its the mod community who kept this thing alive so long.... dozens of new tracks and huge variety of cars. (varying quality is another issue of course) 
 Have there been any complains / sue's of any car facturers about dozens of rally cars beeing modded into RBR? Not that I  had heard of 

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gfRally said:

The current version is certainly being worked on for sure, but I THINK this is a bit of an experiment.  There is an awful lot of resources put into handling, which is good, but also a few other areas that are not so much content related.  EA is a major step for Codie's as well, perhaps this will continue with the following titles as well.  I am guessing that a lot of these will be foundations for the future and then only tweaks will be needed and content will take a little more prominent role. 

Another example is the reuse and tweaked version of the Grid Autodport ego engine.  Not to say the graphics are not good, actually very good!  It would be reasonable to think that the engine would be in need of an overhaul to support newer versions of directX and newer consol graphic technology.  I guess they did this with F1?  Not sure if I see a big improvement on F1 engine.  What I see a need for is the advancement in particle generation, as one example.  I am probably talking out of my Butt here, I know little about programming and the hardware tech available.

One thing I find interesting is there has been more than one occasion it was mentioned about their relative inexperience working on PC only titles and having to back and revise some areas.  For instance the force feedback they mentioned this, and one other place recently that I cannot think of right now.  Also the upcoming addition of mouse support, is a PC only feature.  My question is why would they put resources into these areas if they are mainly a console publisher? Are they working out this stuff for a bigger title? Some stuff to ponder on and gossip about.
I too think its kind of an experiment. To see how EA works out for a major game studio, and to test the market potential for rally sims. The DR team seems to be rather small, not exactly the size that would normally be assigned to a AAA title. 

F1 is in fact based on the most recent version of EGO, and i agree, it doesnt look it has been rewritten from the ground up (which wouldn't make much sense anyways). Looks more like it received a major overhaul to get rid of some outdated code and procedures and prepare it for new technologies (like native DX12 support). However, its quite common that such major engine overhaul comes with less features to ensure that a good base can be established for future titles without dealing with too many issues in the initial process. 

I guess the next big title from this CM studio will be Dirt4, as they dont see Dirt Rally as the official successor of the dirt series. I'm sure that many things they learned during DR development will flow into Dirt4's development. 

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Is argue that it's not just complaints from the manufacturers of things being added into RBR, but imagine how much licensing has changed since then. If they signed a license for even one car which agreed to prevent this, then it would count the possibility out for the whole game. Games like rFactor and AC are created with modding in mind, so they will only be able to sign licensing agreements on this basis. 

If that makes any sense?

But back to the point... I honestly don't think I've ever hoped for DLC as much as for this game! Cars or tracks, all would be appreciated.

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But I'm afraid, hugely content demanding (more stages) games like Rally Games / Sims can only be kept alive on the long  run  if the game structure and compliance is set to let the modding community participate.
And who exactly wants anything kept alive on the long run? Certainly not the publisher and probably also not game studios.
If you can sell a $50 game every year for three years or just one $50 game in three years, what are you going to opt for?
RBR is probably a role model in terms of worst case scenario for a publisher.

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But I'm afraid, hugely content demanding (more stages) games like Rally Games / Sims can only be kept alive on the long  run  if the game structure and compliance is set to let the modding community participate. RBR has shown a good pace here. No one would have played RBR so long only becaus of the nice physics. Its the mod community who kept this thing alive so long.... dozens of new tracks and huge variety of cars. (varying quality is another issue of course) 
 Have there been any complains / sue's of any car facturers about dozens of rally cars beeing modded into RBR? Not that I  had heard of 
Yes, thats basically a 'rally-problem'. Knowing a track in and out is essential for circuit racing, so the sheer amount of available tracks isnt that important for such a game, as long as the existing tracks are high quality. Thats the complete opposite to rally racing as its more about improvising while only knowing the rough shape of a rally stage. Once you know a rally stage in and out it becomes boring pretty quickly, as it defies the essence of rally racing. 

Best thing would be procedural stage creation but current tech doesnt seem to be able yet to provide procedural stages that look and feel like the real ones. And it will be the return of generic pace notes instead of bespoken notes like in DR *shudder*

In regards to RBR, dont forget that the dev studio and the publisher didnt exist anymore once modding started. They went broke shortly after realese and RBR abysmal sales were one of the reasons for the bankruptcy. So basically there wasnt anyone to complain to :)

And as @RodgerDavies stated already, licensing has been changed over the last 10 years. Now car makers even dictate the damage model as they don't want to see their cars completely crippled after an accident. General rule is that the car may never look like someone could have died in it (again, its because of bad rep), that's why games with licensed cars do not offer deformation of the drivers cell, even though tech would be ready for this. Some don't even want to see doors falling off...

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Woozie77 said:

.............. licensing has been changed over the last 10 years. Now car makers even dictate the damage model as they don't want to see their cars completely crippled after an accident. General rule is that the car may never look like someone could have died in it (again, its because of bad rep), that's why games with licensed cars do not offer deformation of the drivers cell, even though tech would be ready for this. Some even dont want to see doors falling off...
  Jees,  thats exactly why I sometimes hate the superduper over-regulated world wer'e currently living in :D
 Ok so speaking of cars and their makes the status quo seems pretty clear, ....

but what about opening up more regarding the stages ? to squeeze out the maximum out of a sim with such a huge potential like DR, it seems almost "given" that the devs will never have the resources to catch up with content the the sim could deliver and the crowd screams for. So, translated in our "modern world": why not letting the Mod crowd participate in terms of Rally location creation but on the same time leaving the last word and decision at Codies whether this content makes it into the sim or not? 

If I was a talented modder I'd be like: "What can I do for you chaps ? wait ! Rally Corsica or some national event hasnt been protected by any license yet ? hell yea ! gimme the track tools and I'd be happy to virtually recreate the whole island for you guys !"  Of couse I  know in practise it wouldnt be that easy, but you get the image...  
 

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but what about opening up more regarding the stages ? to squeeze out the maximum out of a sim with such a huge potential like DR, it seems almost "given" that the devs will never have the resources to catch up with content the the sim could deliver and the crowd screams for. So, translated in our "modern world": why not letting the Mod crowd participate in terms of Rally location creation but on the same time leaving the last word and decision at Codies whether this content makes it into the sim or not? 

If I was a talented modder I'd be like: "What can I do for you chaps ? wait ! Rally Corsica or some national event hasnt been protected by any license yet ? hell yea ! gimme the track tools and I'd be happy to virtually recreate the whole island for you guys !"  Of couse I  know in practise it wouldnt be that easy, but you get the image...  
 
Mate i'd love them to do something like this :D That would be early access 2.0, actively involving the community for content supply (and we even pay for that, haha). I'm sure they would find enough crazy people in this great community who would visit a rally and take a huge amount of pictures and notes to capture the stages. Just give them a proper camera and some kind of streamlined stage notes capturing process. Most of us here are regular rally visitors anyways. 

However, there are still thousands of man-hours required to put all this into the game, but it would save them sending their own people on time consuming scouting trips all over the world.

I'd be all in for this!

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The thing about official modding tools is they have to go through quality assurance, testing and support just as the game does.
It's generally not a case of just releasing the exact tools the devs themselves use.

Really, it's quite an expensive thing to implement. Especially if the game is somewhat niche.
Bethesda have quite a long history in regard to The Elder Scrolls and Fallout, know how the proper tools and extensive modding can keep a game selling for a considerable time (though the returns obviously diminish).
That doesn't stop them holding some cards to their chest though. Many mods require the games official DLC expansions.
There is also the issue of monetised modding, which Bethesda and Steam tried to implement not so long ago (with Bethesday taking 45%, Steam 30% and the modder the remaining 25%)
That was an unmitigated disaster on all kinds of levels, especially PR and was quickly scrapped, but it's more a matter of trying to make it work rather than abandon the publisher making money from community mods.

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I'm usually against DLC, I see most of it as a cheap cash grab.. because it usually is.  It would be totally different here though.  I paid 30 bucks for Dirt Rally, and I have near 200 hours in it already I'd say I got my moneys worthand would have no issues whatsoever paying for more content and features after Sweden/release.

I really really hope it's feasible for Codies to continue to create DLC after retail release.  I know recreating real life stages is an expensive and time consuming thing to do, but I would have no problem paying 10-20 bucks or whatever for a new country because I know that I would get so much enjoyment out of it.  My main fear is after release that's it and then time to move on to Dirt 4 with the dude-bro Monster energy arcade BS that everyone except ADD riddled teenagers hates...  I just hope that Dirt Rally isn't just a one-off project and there is no more continued development after they leave early access. 

What we have now is an outstanding base.  We already have most of the iconic rally cars of the last 40 years, the best stages ever seen in a rally game/sim, and fantastic audio/graphics/handling.  I'd really hate to see it just end with no DLC or modding support planned.  As mentioned before, with other racing sims it's not THAT big a deal to only have a handful of tracks, but with rally it really is.  With only a handful of stages once you start to just memorize/hot lap them you lose the essence of what rally is.  With some more content and improvements we could have the next legendary rally sim that will last for many years.

Codies took a chance with this, I hope they see it as a success and continue to put more content and features in after early access.




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