Technical blog and writings by Micah Webner.

Blogrimage 2014 Day 5: Download THIS!

Everyone loves getting free stuff, and that includes "free bonus material" after you've purchased something. Now, I realize there are multiple reasons for doing this, but let's face it, this can be an easy way to make your customers happy while leading them towards an up-sell. To continue the parallels I drew in my last post, I've quickly noticed that this applies to both electronic games like Mass Effect and Skyrim, as well as tabletop games like the Pathfinder Beginner Box. And in both cases, I've been pretty happy with what I've found.

We basically ignored the downloadable content in the first Mass Effect game, but we grabbed the free assignments for Mass Effect 2, and even purchased Liara and the Shadow Broker for that game and the Citadel DLC for Mass Effect 3. I'm still on the second game, but I watched my wife play parts of the Citadel DLC, and I think it might be the best part of the game. (It's definitely the funniest!)

In similar fashion, one of the first things I noticed about Pathfinder was the free downloads, and of course I grabbed those right away. Again, this is a great opportunity for the vendor, because it gets the customer signed into their website where they can see the rest of the product line for the game.

(And just to round things out, we didn't have to download anything for Skyrim, since my wife found an edition on sale that included all the downloadable content.)

These Pathfinder downloads are going to be really helpful to me. The beginner box really is an introduction to the game, for both the players and the game master. A big part of the GM's job is to use your imagination to create your own world, so (as far as I can tell) once we've finished this first adventure, the rest of the Game Master's Guide contains the tools for me to build a world for our party to explore. That's why it's helpful that the free DLC materials include four demo modules to play.

It looks like these four modules were designed to provide a way to introduce the game at events. Each is supposed to take about 45 minutes to an hour to play, usually with the pregenerated characters in the box set. Again, another smart move by the publisher. I can now use these to fill four more sessions of game time, or even use them as starting (or maybe ending) points for my own adventures.

I'm not entirely sure what point I'm trying to make with this post. Then again, I'm working on a friend's computer problems at the same time, and haven't had dinner yet, so I'm a bit distracted. I guess all I'm trying to say is that this downloadable content is kinda cool, and I'm looking forward to delving into it more.