Alan Smithee

MWN Discusses: Pre-Order Rewards?

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As I flip through the stacks of email we get every morning, I’ve noticed a disturbing (to me) trend. It seems that about 20% of the new games coming out there is a special something-or-other that you can ONLY have if you pre-order your game from Gamestop or any other specific store. So I got to thinking…time for another MWN Discusses!

I, for one, feel like this is such a damned ripoff. You shouldn’t reward only the people who were clammoring for your game before it came out and who tracked it’s progress day by day until it’s release. I don’t have the time or energy to worry about specific release dates and ship dates anymore. I guess I should quantify this, if its some stupid little thing that doesn’t really matter, as in the Golden Lancer in Gears of War 2 multiplayer, I don’t care. However if you offer something that changes the entire game like a wicked good piece of armor or an expansive level (as I’m seeing news about a pre-order only temple in Assassin’s Creed 2) then you’re just being a bunch of assholes.

Those things don’t really matter to me, just like having the CE of a game doesn’t matter to me. I pre-order a game that I know will be hard to find on the shelves if I don’t. That’s it. The rest is just a bonus.

Ryan Wilson
I disagree. Preordering is like any investment, you are giving your support to a product that may or may not be well received. If they didn’t offer an incentive to preordering, then very few would do it.

Preorder in-game content is often just a code that unlocks a download or hidden functionality. More often than not, this can be remedied with a simple DLC at a later date or Google search.

Nik Monroe
I’ve never actively bothered with pre-order bonuses, if I’ve pre-ordered a game and when I go to pick it it comes with a cheap plastic figure or a code for a golden weapon then fine, as long as I don’t have to pay any more for it. In the UK we tend to end up with a lot t-shirts given out as pre-order bonuses which are poorly made but great for sitting around the house in.

The best pre-order bonus I’ve gotten recently was a 2.5 inch Chris Redfield figure that was bundled in with Resident Evil. The only reason I thought it was great was because it was made by NECA who make the official Resident Evil action figures so the figure was well made and highly detailed.

I’m really not a fan of pre-order bonuses. The people who usually have the pre order items are the specialist stores and I’ll always avoid them for new games as they’re always nearest to the RRP. Because of this, pre-order bonuses are like blackmail, pressuring people to pay extra so that they can get something extra.

Early or exclusive demos are the ones that piss me off the most because people are essentially playing extra to play a part of the game they pre ordered early. Now, why would they want a demo if they pre-ordered the game because obviously they pre-ordered the game for a reason. The other one that pisses me off is in-game bonuses. Half of the time they’re just cheat codes (see Red Faction, WWE Legends) but then the other half is just keeping content from people buying their game for the sake of pre-orders. So yeah, fuck pre-order bonuses.

Evan Burkey
Pre-order bonuses are cool, no doubt, but I have to agree with Ex: frivolous extras like figures, posters, or art books are cool, but adding extra levels or special moves (inFamous and Gamestop, I’m looking at you) is a snub to people who didn’t or couldn’t preorder the game. I shouldn’t be denied anything in-game because I preordered from one store over another.

When it comes to out of game bonuses, I care depending on what it is. I’m a rabid collector of figures and plushies (let the gay jokes commence), so if I can get one for a game preorder then I hop on that. Recent examples were the Amazon release of Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner 2, Resident Evil 5, and PROTOTYPE. I also really like soundtrack cds, and have an ample collection of those as well. However, things like art books and making-of DVDs don’t matter in the slightest, as far as I’m concerned.

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