A golden opportunity for Codemasters

I feel that Codemasters are missing out on a golden opportunity.  How so?  I’m referring to Trophy support and downloadable content; what I’m on about will all become clear very soon.

Codemasters are driving game veterans, having developed the Collin McRae Rally series over a number of years now.  They followed up their great series with the launch of DiRT on the PS3.  Then the subsequent development and launch of Race Driver: GRID- essentially the latest game in the TOCA Touring Car series, was a stroke of genius.  I’m only guessing here, but GRID surely reached a large audience.  I was a gamer that had played the TOCA Touring Car games and didn’t particularly like them, but GRID changed that. The visuals, the style, and the sublime handling.  Hey, I liked the handling! (some people would argue the handling was lumpy).

What has made things turn sour for PS3 users, is the fact that GRID won’t be patched to retrospectively support Trophies.  Everything’s been quiet on the GRID front for months, and then a mysterious downloadable content pack is available to purchase on the PlayStation Store.  It’s called the “8-ball pack“, and for £6.29 you get 8 cars.  Yup, for all that money, you just get that.  Let’s have a look what the competition have done…

Criterion Games, the developers of Burnout Paradise, have toiled away at and released Trophy support, and numerous downloadable content packs (all free!), and are only going to charge for their next pack because it adds a whole new island to the game.  It is probably even in the territory of an expansion pack.

This is why I don’t get this comment:

We’re currently not planning to retrospectively support PSN trophies – it’s not a trivial thing to add to a game.

Source.

This is where I believe that Codemasters have missed a golden opportunity.  The fans want Trophies, and the developers want a return on investment (ROI), so why don’t they patch the game for trophies, chuck a couple of cars in to sweeten the deal, then offer the pack up for purchase on the PlayStation Store?

You may think I’m making a big deal out of this, especially because there are many games out there that were released before Trophies came out and haven’t been patched such as Resistance: Fall of Man, The Orange Box, and many more.  But none of those games have just had a downloadable content pack released!  If they’re willing to develop new content packs, then why not Trophy support?

Sure, there will be a development team working on DiRT 2, but GRID is a franchise now in it’s own right and they could have kept interest in the game for far longer than they have done, just by following Criterion’s example.  But I digress.  I’ll conclude by admitting that the main reason I’m so upset about this is that GRID is one of my favourite games, and I’m just irritated by the attitude of the developers in this case.

2 thoughts on “A golden opportunity for Codemasters”

  1. This is one of the reasons going against my decision to purchase a PlayStation 3; the ludicrously erratic Trophy support. Some games have it, some games don’t? It doesn’t make much sense to me why it wasn’t fully implemented and supported from the beginning. I’m sure there’s a good reason why, but yeah, it seems really silly to me, the all or nothing type of girl I am.

  2. I totally agree with you- when the PS3 was first launched, it didn’t have all the essential features that it has now. Trophy support should have been from day one. Also, something as important as an official bluetooth headset has only just been released a week or two ago.

    With regards to Trophy support in particular, it isn’t mandatory for any previously released games to be patched, nor any games currently in development!! That’s just crazy. I think it will be mandatory for all new games to support Trophies from Jan 2009.

    I suppose this post goes some way in proving that I’m now a total Trophy whore! I think the reason is that with the increasingly limited amount of time I can dedicate towards gaming, I now feel that whatever time I do spend gaming should be recognised and rewarded.

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