Downloadable content (ダウンロードコンテンツ, Daunrōdo Kontentsu?), often shortened to DLC, and also called add-on in the PlayStation Network, is a part of the game where a player can download additional content, very often for a price. Typically distributed through the Internet, the practice of offering downloadable content became prevalent with the proliferation of Internet-enabled, sixth-generation video game consoles and mobile devices.
Types of downloadable content range from simple in-game outfits that change the appearance of playable characters, to expansions to the game's storyline. Downloadable content may thus include new game levels, minigames, music, equipment and characters to an already released game. Downloadable content is often used as a pre-order bonus and as a general device to market a game, such as how Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection was released with DLC codes for new outfits for Cecil in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy in some regions where the game was released.
Depending on the region, the method of getting downloadable content may vary. Some downloadable content is released for free as a way to market the game's optional content, as publishers will hope that customers who log on to unlock their free content will end up making additional purchases as well. Examples of this practice can be seen with Square Enix and downloadable outfits, some of which are available for free. Sometimes a specific code is required to get DLC. These codes can be packaged with pre-orders or certain editions of a game.
For example, in certain regions, Final Fantasy XIII-2 pre-orders came packaged with codes for an exclusive weapon for the character Noel Kreiss, depending on which retailer the game was ordered from. Sometimes, codes can come packaged with promotional items for the game. For example, the April edition of the Japanese magazine "V Jump" came with a code for a DLC costume for Squall Leonhart in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, whereas the June edition came with a code for a costume for Vaan, and the Yakusoku no Basho / Tatta Hitori no Mikata single and mini soundtrack came with codes for exclusive items for Final Fantasy XIII-2.
DLC is redeemable (either by purchasing or by entering codes) through the console's or mobile device's e-Store. For the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable, this is PlayStation Network, whereas the Xbox 360 uses the Xbox Games Store, the Nintendo 3DS uses the Nintendo eShop and the Nintendo Wii uses the Wii Shop Channel. Finally, iOS devices use the App Store to purchase downloadable content. Most of the games with DLC also include a DLC menu, allowing purchasing and downloading within the game.
Similar to downloadable content, many games may contain microtransactions. These are small payments often included in a free-to-play game. They do not add additional content, but purchase boosts or in-game currency within a game.
DLC offers additional accessories, weapons and costumes for Serah Farron and Noel Kreiss, Coliseum battles where the opponents can become recruitable Paradigm Pack monsters, and playable scenarios. Of all the available downloadable content, Serah's "Steel and Style" costume is the only free item that doesn't require the purchase of any other promotional items.
Director and producer interviews in Final Fantasy XIII-2 Ultimania Omega reveal that there were more plans for DLC scenarios than what were actually released. There were plans to have a motorbiking minigame included in the Snow Villiers DLC, where he would have had to kill monsters on the Archylte Steppe, and another where Hope Estheim would have traversed the Augusta Tower with the player's Live Trigger choices determining the story's outcome.
On June 11th 2013, the game was released on the PlayStation Network, along with the majority of the DLC content, which was released in a bundle. The DLC content, bar some of the costumes, is included in the Steam release by default.
The developers gauged player feedback to the downloadable content for Final Fantasy XIII-2, and used it when planning for Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII. One of the biggest issues was the negative reaction of players having to compulsorily purchase downloadable content to see the game's complete ending. In response to this, it was confirmed early on that the entirety of the storyline would be finished in the game, and players would not require downloadable content to be able to complete it.
The player can purchase optional items from the Mog Station store.
Downloadable content was planned for Final Fantasy XV in the form of airships, attire, special battles and language options. If content was to be added via DLC, it was said it would be free. In the end, the game launched with the Regalia Type-F flying car, it had two downloadable attires for Noctis (one for those who bought the steelbook edition, and one Japan-exclusive for those who bought the actual jacket Noctis would also wear in-game as DLC) and more content was added in patches. The game didn't launch with a manual photo mode, but it was added in a patch, and Chapter 13 was updated with new story content. Moogle Chocobo Carnival was a free event that took place in February that had some additional content for Season Pass holders.
Totomostro in Altissia is a coliseum where the player can play a minigame where monsters fight against each other, and the player participates by betting on the winner. The developers are considering adding more content there post-launch.
Final Fantasy XV will include a virtual reality experience that is to be released later, something extra to be enjoyed by the people who purchase Final Fantasy XV.
A season pass is available to purchase for additional downloadable content. The pass includes the following six pieces of downloadable content, one of which will include a new mode:
- "Booster Pack"
- "Holiday Pack"
- "Episode Gladiolus"
- "Episode Prompto"
- "Episode Ignis"
- "Multiplayer Expansion: Comrades"
The downloadable episodes can also be purchased separately without a season pass.
Square Enix announced at Paris Games Week on October 27, 2016, that the game had gone gold, meaning development was complete and it was ready for production. Development would shift towards downloadable content, which includes three original episodes that take place during the events of the main game. Each episode will have the player take control of one of Noctis's comrades, each with their own play style. Following the character episodes, an expansion pack called "Comrades" is set to introduce an online co-op mode for up to four players allowing players to take control of custom made characters. Square Enix Business Division 2 producer Haruyoshi Sawatari manages the downloadable content and it is being overseen by Final Fantasy XV director Hajime Tabata, with development led by core members of the game's team.
On December 7, 2016, Square Enix announced plans for future free updates to the game. In the short team, the team plan to enrich some poorly received aspects of the game's story, by altering some gameplay experiences and by adding more scenes to further flesh out the motivations of certain characters. In the long term, the team will look into making some of the story's side characters playable.
The PSP version features free DLC through the game's Square Enix Members page, so long as players have Internet connection to the PSP. By linking the game and its PSP Player Code to a Japanese Square Enix Members account, players can collect daily tickets which can be redeemed for in-game items that will be sent to the main game. This allows players to obtain items that are normally difficult to find in-game (e.g. high-level phantoma and chocobos) as well as items that are only available as prizes from multiplayer (e.g. character-exclusive accessories and SPP Shop weapons). The members page allows the party to obtain their two additional costume sets, the summer and formal uniforms, by downloading the free trial demo and referring other users to download the demo as well.
Final Fantasy Type-0 HD does not feature connectivity to Square Enix Members, as all items were now obtainable in the game itself.
DLC offers additional dungeons and outfits for the king. The DLC can only be bought directly from the Wii Shop Channel and can vary in price from 100 Wii Points to 800 Wii Points.
DLC offers additional costumes, monsters, stages and an extra chapter after the completion of the game. The content can only be bought directly from the Wii Shop Channel and can vary in price from 200 Wii Points to 600 Wii Points.
It was announced on August 6th, 2012, that downloadable content would be available. The content available is only alternate costumes for the playable characters (Agnès Oblige, Tiz Arrior, Edea Lee and Ringabel). Each character has a unique individual costume, as well as a "Freelancer" costume, available by purchasing the soundtrack. Though none of the content is directly purchasable from the Nintendo eShop, the unique costumes costumes can be unlocked in a variety of ways; from viewing the true ending to registering one's Square Enix Members account or Facebook account to playing the sequel, Bravely Default: Praying Brage.
In the Western release, the DLC alternate outfits were made available in-game, excluding the new outfits released in Bravely Default: For the Sequel in Japan.
Like its predecessor, Bravely Second was confirmed to also have downloadable costumes. The only characters to be confirmed to have downloadable costumes are Yew Geneolgia, Magnolia Arch, Edea Lee and Tiz Arrior. The current method for obtaining these costumes are unknown.
In the Western release, these costumes can be obtained from various locations. Some were also available by pre-ordering the game.
DLC offers additional costumes and music packs. Additionally, the Japanese edition has available downloadable quests for players which show more of the story. Dissidia Duodecim Prologus Final Fantasy was released ahead of the game as a downloadable feature that largely worked as a playable demo, but wasn't listed under demos, but rather among downloadable games in PlayStation Network since it was not free content and featured a side plot not present in Dissidia 012. If the player downloaded Prologus they could unlock the optional Assist character Aerith.
The content can be unlocked primarily by purchasing through PlayStation Network, though a lot of content can be unlocked by the use of promotional codes distributed with special editions, pre-orders, guide books, magazines, participating in tournaments or by purchasing other games (or specific editions of them).
The Nintendo 3DS version has DLC offers several additional themes from titles of the series, while its iOS port offers more tracks from the series than 3DS version and has several downloadable characters. For the 3DS port, following the release of eight initial tracks after the game's release, tracks were released weekly until September 21st, 2012, when all regions had the identical 52 tracks.
All the content is purchasable directly, for the Nintendo 3DS version, and from the App Store, for the iOS mobile version.
Additional themes and characters can be unlocked through downloadable content. It was split into two schedules: The First Performance, which ran from April to August 2014 in Japan and during September and October 2014 internationally and had a focus on titles within the series, and The Second Performance, which began November 2014 in Japan and December 2014 internationally and had a focus on non-Final Fantasy titles by Square Enix.
DLC includes 35 playable characters from the entire Final Fantasy series, from memorable characters such as Aerith Gainsborough or Mog, to joke characters such as Pig and Imp. DLC worlds are also provided. Each DLC world has its a unique set of enemies related to its original game.
All the content is purchasable directly from the App Store on iOS mobile devices.
Numerous Mirages can be purchased for use in the player's party. Square Enix have also offered limited-time free downloads of special Champions to promote the release of other games, such as Sora from Kingdom Hearts.
- ↑ Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII - Preview Part II The Developers Explain the Latest in the FFXIII saga
- ↑ TGS 2015: New Final Fantasy XV story beats, chocobos, fishing and more in latest ATR (Accessed: January 16, 2018) at Nova Crystallis
- ↑ Final Fantasy XV director answers 16 fan questions at E3 2016 (Accessed: January 16, 2018) at Gematsu
- ↑ Final Fantasy 15 on PS4 Will Include VR Experience, But Not Right Away (Accessed: January 16, 2018) at Gamespot
- ↑ Final Fantasy XV goes gold, ‘Omen’ CG trailer and DLC details (Accessed: January 16, 2018) at Gematsu
- ↑ Announcing free updates for Final Fantasy XV (Accessed: January 16, 2018) at SQUARE ENIX Blog