DLC, Map Pack, Expansion, Add-On: Which one is it?

As gamers, we usually enjoy one game and find the next obsession like drug addicted maniacs (don’t do drugs). Sometimes, dealers (I mean developers) release content after months of the initial release of the game. At times, the press release doesn’t necessarily define what is going to the follow up content and they announce it generically a DLC or Downloadable Content. I don’t necessarily have a problem with that phrase when it comes to downloading said content. However, it annoys me when the phrase isn’t relevant to what it is; so I’m going to give you my interpretation of what DLC are to me and how they are broken down.

DLC’s, simply downloadable content which should be additional gameplay tacked on to the base game you can receive through an internet connection. If you need a physical copy, then that to me would be an expansion. “DLC” and “expansion” terms  are the umbrellas for the other downloadable content. Expansions traditionally are optional content that would seem more like an epilogue to the main story to the game or adding a large continuation to the game. Whether it is a larger map size in an MMO or an additional story to the game.

Map packs are prevalent with first person shooters which add additional scenery and areas to play on. Some companies at the same time also release maps as well as additional game modes or content as well, in which case this gets a bit more messy to whether it’s a DLC or a map pack. Oh wait, it’s not! It’s both a DLC and a map pack however the “map pack” nomenclature is included if there is a set of maps and not just one map in the content release in my opinion. This goes with “weapon packs” or any kinds of item addition which sometimes deliver through the same genre. However if it’s just a singular item in any game, I would consider it as a add on (addon or add-on, just pick one) since it’s only a small update to the game and does not open much more gameplay.

At the consumer end, to have some standardization even through terminology to convey what you are trying to advertise. Until next time, keep on gaming!


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