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Four Add-ons Planned For Sins of a Solar Empire 68

Posted by Soulskill
from the a-quantum-of-content dept.
With the first add-on pack for Sins of a Solar Empire arriving in just under a month, publisher Kalypso Media has announced that three more add-ons are on their way as well. Gamespot has an early look at the first add-on, Entrenchment, and a couple of additional screenshots are available at Shacknews. The game's creative director, Craig Frazer, also explained their reasoning for making small expansions rather than large ones: "If PC gaming is to survive, the industry will need to be open to change. We went out on a limb with our anti-DRM stance and it paid off really well. We tried an unusually long beta period and that worked as well. Micro-expansions are just another experiment we are trying out to improve the market. These small expansions give us the opportunity to provide highly focused, high quality content within a reasonable time frame. Micro-expansions also reduce the development risk associated with 1-3 year cycles. With lower risk, we can be far more progressive in terms of gameplay and content."
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Four Add-ons Planned For Sins of a Solar Empire

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  • Looking forward to play it. :)

  • by Wiarumas (919682) on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @04:22PM (#25473681)
    Uh oh, $15 (approx) "Micro" expansions. Don't let EA find out about this or else Walmarts will have to double in size to handle all those Sims addons.
    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      RTFA,

      $9.95.. not "approx"

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Wiarumas (919682)
        From TFA: £7.99 = $12.91 (hey, maybe I'm taking into consideration the possibility of the USD taking a dive)
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by mjwx (966435)

          From TFA: £7.99 = $12.91

          OK as I said before Stardock is a US company and all transactions are in USD. 8 British pounds are an approximate conversion of $10 USD. Please refer to the Stardock [stardock.com] store for more details.

    • Should be $10.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mjwx (966435)

      Uh oh, $15 (approx)

      Stardock have said from the outset that each will have a US$10 price tag, so if you're talking in AUD you'd be correct but seeing as you mentioned Walmart I think that you aren't Australian. Seeing as Stardock is an entirely US company all transactions via Impulse are in USD (8 GBP is just an approximate conversion for our pommy friends), please see here [stardock.com] for the actual price.

      Don't let EA find out about this or else Walmarts will have to double in size to handle all those Sims addons.

      EA

    • by crossmr (957846)

      I believe the install time on a fresh copy of The Sims 2 with all expansion packs, stuff packs, and free items (just official not fan made) is in the neighbourhood of around 5 hours.
      They desperately need to come out with some "TS2 Complete" DVD (or set of DVDs that are part of a single install) to streamline this process. I'd also encourage them to allow anyone who has actually bought all of them to send them all their DVDs for a free copy.

  • Should they really tell people "hey, we're making more and more expansions for you to waste your money on"?

  • by MillenneumMan (932804) on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @04:27PM (#25473777)

    I recall the game "Total Annihilation", a popular real time strategy game from the 90s. The publisher, CaveDog, periodically would add new units to the game (something like one a month or so). While I also like it when the publisher includes map editors, it is still good to get new material from the original developers.

  • Micro-price? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Alex777 (1113887) on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @04:34PM (#25473875)

    I only hope these micro-expansions also have a micro-price.

    What they ought to do is offer one pack of expansions that includes all the expansions released up to that point, with appropriate discounts if you already have a subset of the included content. I can't see a la carte expansions ever working.

    • Re:Micro-price? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Raijen (689360) <[raijenardesh] [at] [gmail.com]> on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @05:38PM (#25474929)

      According to the preview at IGN [ign.com]: "The first micro-expansion is called Entrenchment, and Ironclad plans on selling it for about $10, which is a third of what a typical expansion costs."

      So four expansions for fourty dollars sounds fairly inline to me at least.

    • They are (Score:3, Informative)

      by Sycraft-fu (314770)

      $10 is the price I see for it on Impulse. Given the normal expansion price of $30-40 (for example Wrath of the Lich King is $40) that seems pretty reasonable.

    • by crossmr (957846)

      You're right. I know in Korea when they try to do these kinds of individual purchases for games its failed horribly...

  • The articles only mention three. Whats this about a fourth one?

    • well, in TFA they won't even mention what the third is about until the second on is out so I suppose they are gonna go all out on the fourth and deny its existance completely

  • Sounds like an attempt to milk the cash cow to me. I suspect the only way these micro expansions will work out is if they also come with a micro price.

    • by discord5 (798235)

      Sounds like an attempt to milk the cash cow to me

      It probably is, but then again I own the game and I've gotten more than my moneys worth of fun out of it. It's a genre I really enjoy, decent graphics, decent gameplay... It was money well spent.

      I haven't checked out the contents to the micro-expansion yet, but I probably will when it gets released. It'll depend on the content and the price most likely if I buy it, but I haven't been disappointed by the Stardock titles I liked yet.

      I suspect the only way these micro expansions will work out is if they also come with a micro price.

      Most likely. If the price is too high they'll probably have a lot of people w

      • by Fweeky (41046)

        You might have a look at Sword of the Stars [wikipedia.org], from the peeps who did Homeworld Cataclysm. They just released their second expansion in GamersGate, and the original and first expansion are on Impulse.

        Personally I found it more interesting than SoaSE; there's more variation between the different races.

      • by bstreiff (457409)

        Indie games can be quite fun for a while and often are cheap (eg Audiosurf [steampowered.com] is just $10, and Defcon [steampowered.com] is $15).

        Unless, of course, you want it for Mac-- in which case, it's $25 [ambrosiasw.com]. Actually, you can get all three of Introversion's games (Uplink, Darwinia, and Defcon [introversion.co.uk] for $33.20 for Windows/Linux, but Ambrosia charges $25-28 each for the OS X versions.

        And people wonder why everyone games on Windows.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Dutch Gun (899105)

      Sounds like an attempt to milk the cash cow to me.

      "Sins of a Solar Empire", while moderately successful, is hardly a "cash cow". I believe you've mistaken this article for the one in which EA is selling an expansion to Spore almost immediately after its launch, with another shortly to follow. [slashdot.org]

      I suspect the only way these micro expansions will work out is if they also come with a micro price.

      $9.95 micro enough for you?

  • by rk (6314) * on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @06:11PM (#25475341) Journal
    Includes a good ground combat battle system, I will no longer worry, for I am already dead, and in Heaven.
  • by ElMiguel (117685) on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @06:50PM (#25475817)

    Have WoW's 10+ million subscribers suddenly decided to abandon PC gaming?

    Seriously, when has PC gaming been a bigger industry than in the last few years?

    • by Dan667 (564390)
      It is FUD from the console manufacturers. They are trying to convert the stupid and clueless to consoles so they spread this rumor.
    • by Draek (916851) on Wednesday October 22, 2008 @09:38PM (#25477379)

      Have WoW's 10+ million subscribers suddenly decided to abandon PC gaming?

      One game does not an industry make.

      Seriously, when has PC gaming been a bigger industry than in the last few years?

      The issue, I believe, is not about size per se but rather the fact that DRM is pissing off enough customers that the *stability* of it is in question. And once the market is deemed too unstable, the shrinking customer base is almost sure to follow.

      • by yukk (638002)

        Have WoW's 10+ million subscribers suddenly decided to abandon PC gaming?

        One game does not an industry make.

        That's right. That's why with only 1 major desktop O/S for PCs business and consumers alike have abandoned PCs entirely. I don't know, 10M is a pretty nice chunk of market. While what you say is technically true, WOW is just one example. It may be an outlier but PC gaming is not dead. Netcraft confirms it.

        • by Draek (916851)

          That's right. That's why with only 1 major desktop O/S for PCs business and consumers alike have abandoned PCs entirely.

          That's a secondary market. The closest analogy is that of OSes themselves, and besides Macs (which live in their own world anyways) and the Free UNIXen, how much activity has there been on that front for, ohh, the last 15 years? fuckin' active industry, right.

          While what you say is technically true, WOW is just one example. It may be an outlier but PC gaming is not dead.

          No one has said that it's dead. Only that it may be in danger of becoming so, and if the current trends towards pervasive DRM continue unchecked, I wouldn't be sad nor surprised to see that.

      • One game does not an industry make.

        Quake?

    • PC gaming is.

      If anything, WoW harms the PC gaming market more than it supports it. Gamers spending all their time (and money) on WoW are less likely to buy other PC games.

    • by T.E.D. (34228)

      That's actually part of the problem. WoW is essentially sucking all the oxygen out of the room. Who has time to try out a potentially great new game when they are trying desperately to level up their characters or reputation or gear in WoW?

      If you look at it as two separate industries: the MMORPG industry and the PC gaming industry, the former is doing OK (particularly if your name is Blizzard), but the latter has been doing much worse in the last couple of years.

  • I wanted to like this game, I really did, but the pacing is excruciatingly slow! You spend most of your time in information-OCD-mode, checking up on things even when you know it will take another 10 minutes until you can....click an upgrade and wait another 10 minutes. Turning up the game speed only makes it choppy and unless you are zoomed in all the way (which makes anything more than spectating impractical) every ship is displayed as a two-dimensional sprite.

    Next time, if you're going to make a game t

    • I wanted to like this game, I really did, but the pacing is excruciatingly slow!

      ...th...th-t-there's no DRM!!!!!!!! That makes flowers, paper money, and porno tapes bloom from thin air!

    • by mjwx (966435)
      If you find SINS level of information display puts you into "OCD mode" I suggest you stick to twitch shooters like Halo and COD. Compared to most 4X strategy games SINS did a lot of self management and didn't require constant checking by the player. I have my complaints about SINS but its slowness was not one of them, they managed to get the right speed for the game, you are not constantly checking up on planets as you would in a traditional 4X game (CIV for example) and the way that Sins displays info was
    • by dswensen (252552)

      The plus key is your friend. Don't like the pace? Turn it up by 2x, 4x, 8x.

      I play at 2x by default now, and the pace is quite brisk. Don't blame the game for your ignorance.

      • by BitHive (578094)
        As I said in my original post, "Turning up the game speed only makes it choppy" but thanks for reading!
  • Micro-expansions are just another experiment we are trying out to try to latch on to the sweet, sweet tit of recurring revenue streams like those filthy rich MMO's have. If we can get you to pay more overall for less content than would be found in a bigger release, we'll be rich!

    Fixed that for you....

    I understand there are lots of efficiencies to doing smaller releases, but one of the trends I've noticed lately with these "episodic" releases is that they give you a smaller amount of content and charge

    • by JordanL (886154)
      Three expansions at $10 a piece, so about $30 for all of them, or about average to below average for the "full" expansion, with the bonus that you don't have to pay for parts you don't want.
      • Those numbers might not have been the best choice in this instance. My point was that they are trying to make more by providing you less content. Now, to your point, there may be some consumer value in being able to only pay for the micro-expansions you want but if you buy them all, you are paying more in the long run, which is their goal.
  • I'm a harsh critic, but they really need to fix the original game before people will flock to it. Just as with all games for the last few year they may have made their deadline and maybe even kept to the spirit of their original designs, but they have to FIRST make the games usable, THEN make them interesting for there to be any chance at being FUN.

    UI seems to always be the part that suffers the most.

    8-PP

  • I guess I am the only one that didn't like sins of the solar empire, so I expect to be modded to oblivion, but I just couldn't get into it.

    Quite simply there was no story so I didn't really have much of an interest in playing.

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