I've gotta hand it to Saints Row IV. Three bucks for four sound effects (OK, and some weapon skins) is pretty fucking obnoxious, when you think about it. But when you pitch it like a blue-screen ad from a 1980s UHF station, it suddenly becomes hilarious.
I'm not even sure that $3 for four sound effects is the worst part of this, either. This is the Dubstep Gun we're talking about—a weapon that will literally kill people to death with dubstep. That's awesome. It's perfect for Saints Row, which is a nonstop parody of excesses, and here are two of video gaming's worst combined in one delightful toy: indiscriminate violence and shitty wub-wub soundtracks. Expanding it to polka, The Ride of the Valkyries or death metal is over-tagging the joke. Making people pay for it is even worse.
Still, if the games industry gives out ad-of-the-year awards, this should get one. It artfully disguises the basic proposition: Again, three goddamn dollars for four goddamn sound effects. I mean, really. In the hands of any other publisher they'd stumblefuck their way through it, pretending this actually added value or was worth the $3. (Activision would close it out with a huge title card announcing the release date. You know they would). Deep Silver and Volition are smart enough to know the joke here isn't the dubstep gun or its sounds, it's that a lot of people are dumb enough to buy anything they see on the screen in the middle of the afternoon.
Now that I've said this, watch EA do a Franklin Mint-style ad for its Battlefield DLC. You know they will.
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