Downloadable content. Everyone hates it—but everyone buys it. Yes, even you in the comments, smart guy. Here's a look at the latest package of extensions and pre-order bonuses designed to crowbar the last dollar out of your wallet. Can you still respect yourself if you buy it?
Mass Effect 3: From Ashes
Available: Day-one DLC. (March 6)
What You Get: A story extension that allows players to "unlock [SPOILER] from the [SPOILER] and also add a new member to your team, who is [SPOILER].
Why It's Evil: Good Lord, did you see the tantrum thrown over this on Reddit? We haven't seen outrage like that since ... Tuesday.
Evil Score: 2/5. Its early appearance on the Xbox Live Marketplace constitutes the worst sin you could commit against this type of game: the spoiler. Otherwise, yawn. Mass Effect 2 had loads of downloadable content (most of it meh) and even a paywall and the thing was still GOTY caliber. Quit whining.
Uncharted 4: Golden Abyss "Treasure Map Pack"
Price: 99 cents.
What You Get: It's a bunch of goddamn treasure maps. Really that's it. They show you where all of the game's lame collectibles are.
Why It's Evil: You hear "map pack" and you think multiplayer, especially in a game like Uncharted. Well, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, the PS Vita version of the series, has no multiplayer. I'd rather spend 99 cents just to have the game pretend I found all of the collectibles.
Evil Score: 4/5. The use of "Map Pack" and the uselessness of the content make this a borderline deceptive product.
ModNation Racers: Road Trip—Unlock All Code
What You Get: A 100KB file.
Why It's Evil: With this, gamers can pay $6 to unlock all of the game's customizable content, and bypass all of the racing and ranking up and winning and losing and hours of replayability. For $6? What's the point?
Evil Score: 3/5. They're charging you $6 for what is, theoretically, the whole point of the game, which is locked to begin with. You have to pay if you don't want to spend the time necessary to unlock it. Either lock it for everyone, or don't.