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Pre-Orders Suck

Pre-Orders Suck

There’s news doing the rounds this morning that there are six different Batman skins available in Batman: Arkham City, as rounded up by arkhamcity.co.uk.

They are, from left to right: Batman Beyond (pre-order from GameStop.co.uk), The Dark Knight Returns (with Arkham City Collector’s Edition), Earth One Batman (purchase from MightyApe.co.nz), 1960s Batman (pre-order from ShopTo.net), 1990s Animated Series Batman (purchase from MightyApe.co.nz) and Arkham Asylum Batman.

As you might have noticed, from the convoluted brackets above, there’s no practical way to get all the pre-order skins. Why? These are the kind of unlockables Batman fans would love and would surely serve well as an in-game bonus, helping replayability and also rewarding the player for their initial investment.

Instead, it looks the pre-order marketing gimmick has won out. We already knew the Robin skin was going to be a pre-order bonus and we were fine with that because it’s Robin, so whatever. But these? We actually want these skins. These are good. And unless we pre-order the game from New Zealand, we’re not going to get them.

We hope – we really, really, really hope – that these will still be unlockable in-game. Or maybe even available later as DLC. But it’s yet another example of the ever growing pre-order trend

Do you pre-order your games based on the strength of these bonuses? How do you feel about the ploy of rewarding those who pre-order, fair to reward those who show their commitment early or unfair to exclude everyone else?

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  • Dawson

    I work at a game shop, and the emphasis on pre-orders has just exploded lately, especially on deposits. I’m ok with the odd pre-order bonus, as they usually tend to be something that you unlock later. If it’s extra content you can’t otherwise get, then it becomes a problem. On the flip side, I’d be pissed if I specifically pre-ordered something to get some exclusive content, and then they go ahead and release to everyone anyway (although in that scenario, I would expect that non-preorder folks would have to pay extra, so its not quite as bad).

    I think any kind of pre-order exclusive should be the same across the board i.e. available to anyone pre-ordering from anywhere. It should be used as a tool to drive early interest, not as a game of one-up-man-ship for retailers.

  • Tim

    They will be available as DLC in the future – no doubt about it…

  • Scrum

    I never pre-order games, and I’m never that fussed on missing out on outfits and stuff. True, it’s annoying, and it would be nice to have them in the game or as DLC, but it doesn’t really affect me as I wouldn’t download it anyway, unless it was a code in the box.