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Downloadable content, or DLC, is video game data that is downloaded into the game that wasn't there originally. Examples include new levels, items, characters, and so forth. DLC was originally the exclusive domain of PC gaming, but every current game system (even the DSi, to a limited extent) now supports it. Downloadable content helps keep a game fresh and sometimes increases the replay value. It's generally small in size, so they are quick to download and install right away. Major exceptions to that are the Grand Theft Auto IV episodes (The Lost and Damned, and The Ballad of Gay Tony) which are much larger than just a single new level. Not too surprisingly, Rockstar made both episodes available for retail purchase in-stores, as a regular game disc.

Of course, DLC also has some controversy attached to it. Many a dedicated and knowledgeable gamer may crack the game to see what is stored in the disc, and they won't be too happy if they see that the DLC they got was already on the game to begin with, thus making the DLC pure Bribing Your Way to Victory. Another issue DLC brings up is pricing. It is subjective what content is worth paying for, but some gamers in general fear that game developers may use DLC as a way to milk more money out of their consumers by rushing the game (thus making it filled with bugs or missing content) and then charging people to get the rest of the good stuff. Also, DLC can often give a player a competitive advantage online, essentially forcing every player in the game to buy the DLC just to compete with other people who bought the DLC for exactly the same reason.

Downloadable content is also seen as a way of discouraging used game sales, since the person who buys the game used may have to pay again for the downloadable content or not be able to get it at all.

Of course, not all developers use DLC this way. Some do truly give brand new content without having to make people jump through hoops, and some even give these things away for no charge. At the same time though, some developers may force patches with new downloadable content and it may not sit well with people who don't want to upgrade their games from patching.

As with many things, many of the reasons and rationale on both sides can be ripe with knee jerk reactions. While it may be possible (and true) for a rare few developers to push out buggy games with less content in order to sell DLC, most are quite aware of one simple fact of video game life: Bad games don't sell enough to break even and make money (ie pay back the cost of development which will include paying off the publisher, advertising, retailers, etc). It's hard to sell DLC when the initial game does poorly. And in a somewhat hit-driven industry, putting out a bad game that doesn't make money can often mean the death sentence for all but the most well established developer. On the other hand, the rationale that game development has seen ever-inflating budgets may be true, the industry itself is at least partially to blame thanks having cultivated a bigger/better/newer mentality that continually tries to one-up itself without consideration for the logistics and reality that video games are one of the most expensive industries around. For instance, a typically AAA big budget title will likely have a budget around $50 million and take about 18 months to create. The typical time frame where a game will make the majority of its sales? Two weeks. That is well documented by industry organizations, whether for big hit or sleeper. Thus if a game doesn't make a splash in those first two weeks, it will likely never see the cost of development paid off in a reasonable amount of time to keep a studio alive. This puts intense pressure on studios to attract ever mercurial audiences to drop money on their title before the next big thing.

DLC has also been increasing the stakes in the Console Wars, as certain Multi Platform games on consoles only have DLC exclusively on one console, such examples including GTAIV's episodes (Which were originally 360 only), Batman: Arkham Asylums Joker Challenge Rooms (PS3 only), and Fallout 3s DLC (originally 360/PC only, until the whole shebang was eventually released in a span of two weeks for the PS3). Some releases are merely timed, such as Fallout 3, but others aren't, such as Mirror's Edge. In some cases, DLC is free on some platforms but at a premium on others; Valve games like Team Fortress 2 and Left 4 Dead have free content updates on PC that must be bought on Xbox 360. This can come as a Regional Bonus of sorts, although extended to consoles; the long-awaited PS3 port of Mass Effect 2 contain 3 free DLC that Xbox and PC users have to pay for.

With the exception of the PC, where the vast majority of all DLC is user-made content and therefore free, DLC is a prime example of debateability. These complaints can become especially pointed when modding tools are omitted, access to mods from other platforms is denied, or online server browsers lock out mods. Mixes with New Media Are Evil when you encounter people who think DLC in general is pure evil and that all companies only care about ripping off its consumers for their games. Backlashes within the gaming community often occur (regardless of the content of the actual DLC), in the forms of Accentuate the Negative, Broken Base, Internet Backdraft, Unpleasable Fanbase, and many others are often seen when DLC is even discussed.

Compare Expansion Pack, Unlockable Content.

For products which are paid for and then downloaded in general see Digital Distribution.

Examples of Downloadable Content include:
  • Animal Crossing: City Folk has free DLC roughly once a month - furniture, clothing for your character, or a pattern you can use for clothing/wallpaper/etc. It usually has something to do with the season (pile of leaves, election poster, snowman hat) or Nintendo (Wii locker, DS Lite chair, Animal Crossing anniversary cake).
  • ARMA II: Operation Arrowhead
    • British Armed Forces ("BAF"): Adds high-resolution textures and higher-quality sounds for BAF characters and weapons (see below) and a campaign.
    • Private Military Company ("PMC"): Adds high-resolution textures and higher-quality sounds for PMC characters (see below) and a campaign, the sequel to BAF.
    • As of patch v1.57, the "units" (characters) and weapons from both DLC packs were added to Operation Arrowhead with low-resolution textures and lower sound quality, so that player-made missions could make use of those characters and weapons without requiring that the mission creator or player have the DLC.
  • Assassin's Creed II
    • Sequence 12: The Battle of Forli
    • Sequence 13: Bonfire of the Vanities
      • There are two versions of Sequence 13: One with 3 Templar secret locations (originally exclusive to the Collector’s Edition), and one without.
  • Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood
    • Copernicus Conspiracy (PS3 only): Free, adds several single-player mission memories.
    • Animus Project Update 1.0: Free, adds a multiplayer mode (Advanced Alliance) and a new map (Mont St-Michel, day and nighttime versions); cannot be active at the same time as Animus Project Update 2.0.
    • Animus Project Update 2.0: Free, adds a multiplayer mode (Chest Capture) and a new map (Pienza, day and nighttime versions); cannot be active at the same time as Animus Project Update 1.0.
    • The Da Vinci Disappearance: Free on PC, paid on PS3 and Xbox 360; adds ten single-player missions (two were previously exclusive to collector's editions), two minigames, ten achievements/trophies, a new outfit (previously exclusive to Amazon.com pre-orders), two multiplayer modes (Assassinate and Escort), four multiplayer personas (Dama Rossa, Knight, Marquis and Pariah), and a new map (Alhambra).
  • Assassin's Creed: Revelations
    • Ancestors Character Pack (4 new multiplayer characters)
    • Mediterranean Traveller Map Pack (6 new multiplayer maps)
    • The Lost Archive (adds 2 new areas that explores the pasts of Lucy and Subject 16, plus some additional main game content, and 3 new multiplayer characters)
  • Asura's Wrath
    • Episode 11.5, an episode that takes place between episodes 11 and 12, animated by Studio 4°C.
    • Episode 15.5, another episode similar to the one above; takes place between episodes 15 and 16.
    • Part IV: Nirvana, which contains the last four episodes (19-22).
    • Lost Episodes 1 and 2, which are crossovers with Street Fighter.
  • Bastion has Stranger's Dream, which adds an additional trip to Who Knows Where in New Game Plus. It also adds a Score Attack Mode and No-Sweat Mode (easy mode).
  • Batman: Arkham Asylum
    • Play As The Joker Challenge Map (free, PS3 only).
    • Insane Night Challenge Map Pack (2 free new challenge maps)
    • Prey In The Darkness Map Pack (2 free new challenge maps)
    • Crime Alley Challenge Map
    • Dem Bones Challenge Map
  • Batman: Arkham City
    • Robin (Tim Drake) Challenge Maps.
    • Nightwing Challenge Maps.
    • Catwoman Story Levels and Challenge Maps. Included for free in new copies of the game, otherwise they can be purchased.
    • Batman Skins Pack.
    • Challenge Map Pack, which includes 2 previously released challenge maps (one was a Preorder Bonus, the other was a Collector's Edition exclusive) and 1 brand new challenge map.
    • Free Batman skin.
    • Harley's Revenge
  • Battlefield 3
    • Physical Warfare Pack: Several weapons and their attachments for use in multiplayer. Previously a preorder bonus, but now free to download.
    • Back to Karkand: Comes with four of the most popular maps from Battlefield 2 (Wake Island, Gulf of Oman, Sharqi Peninsula, and Strike at Karkand) remade in the Frostbite 2 engine and adds ten new weapons and three new vehicles from Battlefield 2. Free for owners of the Limited Edition. Release date: December 14, 2011.
    • Close Quarters: An expansion focused on close quarters combat. The maps take place mostly within building interiors, with an emphasis of cover and walls being shot to small pieces. Release Date: June 2012
    • Armored Kill: Big, open maps with plenty of new vehicles to take advantage of it, such as mobile artillery. Boasts having the "biggest map in Battlefield history." Release date: Fall 2012.
    • End Game: Info on this expansion is tightly sealed. Release date: Winter 2012.
  • Beautiful Katamari
    • Four different sets of Presents
    • Four different sets of Cousins
    • Special Accessory (which can also be unlocked by getting 100% Collection)
    • 7 new levels (all bought separately)
  • Bio Shock 1 only has one add-on regardless of system: Ryan Industries Plasmids and Gene Tonics (Xbox 360 and PC), or Challenge Rooms (PS3).
  • Bio Shock 2
    • Sinclair Solutions Pack (expands multiplayer)
    • Kill 'em Kindly (free, adds a game mode for multiplayer)
    • Rapture Metro (adds 6 new maps for multiplayer; also contains Kill 'em Kindly)
    • Zigo and Blanche (characters for multiplayer)
    • The Protector’s Trials (challenges where you must protect Little Sisters with unique weapon and Plasmid load-outs)
    • Minerva's Den (3 new levels, a new main character, and reveals what happened to Tenenbaum)
  • Blaz Blue Continuum Shift
  • Blue Dragon
    • Ultra Hard Mod, which unlocks the Hard and Impossible difficulties, the latter of which cannot be beaten without New Game Plus.
    • 6 Treasures, which adds 6 new items.
    • Shuffle Dungeon, a randomized Bonus Dungeon that’s only accessible near the end of the game.
  • Borderlands
    • The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned (New questline)
    • Mad Moxxi's Underdome Riot (Arena, item storage)
    • The Secret Armory of General Knoxx (New questline, raises level cap by 11)
    • Claptrap's Robot Revolution (New questline)
      • In addition to these, there was also a free patch which increased the level cap by 8.
  • Brink
    • Agents of Change (raises the level cap by 4, adds a new ability for each class, and achievements that involve those abilities)
    • Doom/Psycho Combo Pack (additional character customization options)
    • Fallout/SpecOps Combo Pack (additional character customization options)
  • Bulletstorm
    • Gun Sonata (2 new Echoes maps, 3 new Anarchy maps, 2 new leash variants)
    • Blood Symphony (2 new Echoes maps, 3 new Anarchy maps)
  • Burnout Paradise was still updating DLC until two years after the game had come out, and many free updates for things that were planned that didn't make it, including:
    • Bikes (complete with a set of bike missions).
    • Extra cars, including some custom versions of already existing vehicles, and some toy versions (think smaller cars), and a few Lawyer-Friendly Cameo versions of famous cars.
    • Two new game play modes, Cops & Robbers (complete with cop skins for each car in the game), and a local multiplayer party mode.
    • An entirely new island route, with nine extra cars, many extra online missions, and more new missions for both bikes and cars.
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
    • Variety Map Pack (4 new multiplayer maps)
  • Call of Duty: World at War
    • Map Packs 1 through 3 (each contain three new multiplayer maps and one new Nazi Zombies map). Can be purchased separately or in a bundle.
    • Makin Bonus Map (Free daytime version of Makin)
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
    • Stimulus and Resurgence Packs (each contain two ported multiplayer maps from the first Modern Warfare in addition to three entirely new maps)
  • Call of Duty Black Ops
    • First Strike, Escalation, and Annihilation packs (each has 4 multiplayer maps and 1 Zombie map)
    • Rezurrection pack (ports of the original World at War Zombies maps, plus a new "Moon" map; free for preorders, which already came with the original maps)
  • Costume Quest has Grubbins on Ice, a Christmas-themed expansion.
  • Both Dance Central games have downloadable songs.
  • Dark Souls has the Prepare To Die Edition, an Updated Rerelease for the PC. The new content from the PC version available for the console version as Downloadable Content.
  • Dawn of War II: Retribution is the first installment in the series to include DLC for later purchase. Already two has been released, an extra items goodie for the Orks and an actual visual makeover for the Space Marines to include a fully represented Dark Angels chapter, with their unique dress styles and iconography included as an alternative to the standard vanilla space marine styles. This may also mean that several other chapters, such as the Space Wolves and the Blood Angels will get similar DLCs for the game at a future date.
  • Dead Island
    • Bloodbath Arena (game mode where you Hold the Line against endless waves of zombies; comes with a leaderboard and supports up to four players)
    • Ryder White (short, single-player only character campaign)
  • Dead Rising has 12 separate keys that unlock additional clothing that Frank can wear.
    • Dead Rising 2 has 4 different Skill Packs (Ninja, Psycho, Sports Fan, and Soldier), which grant a bonus for wearing the whole set. They were all Pre-Order Bonuses until a month or 2 after release.
    • Dead Rising 2: Off the Record also has 4 Skill Packs (BBQ Chef, Cosplay Warrior, Firefighter, and Cyborg). There's also the GAMEBREAKER Pack, which allows you to (among other things) adjust time, make weapons unbreakable, turn on God Mode, and grant super speed.
  • Dead Space
    • Several suits, weapon skins and weapon upgrades
  • Dead Space 2
    • Various suits and weapons packs
    • Severed (side story showing the events of the game from Dead Space: Extraction's Gabe Weller's point of view)
    • Outbreak (free multiplayer map pack featuring two maps: The Academy and Concourse)
  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution
    • Tactical Enhancement Pack (Double-Barrel Shotgun, Silenced Sniper Rifle, 10,000 Credits) - originally a Preorder Bonus.
    • Explosive Mission Pack (Tong's Rescue Bonus Mission, Grenade Launcher, Remote-Detonated Explosive Device, Automatic Unlocking Device) - originally a Preorder Bonus.
    • The Missing Link (seperate scenario that takes place towards the end of the game)
  • Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice
    • Pretty much every playable character not already included from the previous two Disgaea games and even some that weren't playable back then.
    • Removed monster classes Nekomata and Dragon added back and playable from the beginning of the game.
    • Lord Zetta and Pram, main characters from Makai Kingdom. King Drake the Third also appears as a teacher as a bonus for buying the complete DLC pack and while he's in your base, he'll increase the stat growth of your characters upon leveling up.
    • Several characters from other Nippon Ichi games.
    • Four additional chapters starring Raspberyl as the main character. Upon clearing those the player is rewarded with two bonus weapons, new skills for a handful of characters and the final story boss becomes a playable caharacter.
    • Three "turn attack" modes that unlock Aramis and removed class Angels for creation.
    • A ludicrously hard battle against three Tyrant Baal. Fail to kill all of them in one turn and more Baals appear. If you drag the match for too long Chaos Soldiers will appear and fuse with Baal becoming pretty much invincible.
  • Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten
    • Downloadable Characters: For the North American release, Fallen Angel Flonne can be obtained by preordering from either NISA store or Gamestop. Aside from her, you have Adell, Rozalin, HD Asagi (Free in the U.S.), Overlord Priere, Mao, Kyoko, Asuka, Pink, Main Hero B, Pleinair, Prism Red, Gig, Pram, Petta, Nisa, Marona, Ash, Hugo, Des X, Nemo, King Krichevskoy, and Pirohiko. Some of these characters also come with classes from the previous games like the Deathsabers, the Celestial Hosts, and the Kunoichi. Finally, two new classes — a Medic class (Designed by Noizi Ito) and a Necromancer class (Designed by Kohaku Kuroboshi) — have been added.
    • Downloadable Modes: There will be two downloadable scenarios similar to the Disgaea 3's Raspberyl Mode. The first will take place before the main game and feature Valvatorez during his days as a Tyrant - which will include an alternate version of Valvatorez (Tyrant Valvatorez, similar to Fallen Angel Flonne). The second will focus on Fuka, Desco and Prinny reincarnation. In addition, there will be added gameplay modes like Tournament Mode and Survival Mode.
    • Extra: Finally, with each character release, there will downloadable ship parts for your pirate ship and stage maps for both the map creator and the hub. Also, a bonus boss against the original Baal.
  • Dissidia 012 [duodecim]: Final Fantasy has extra costumes and BGM for sale in the Playstation store, some of which is region-specific. Buying a special prologue version of the game and importing its data is also the only way to get Aerith as a support-only character.
  • Dragon Age: Origins
    • Warden's Keep (adds a quest, and a storage chest)
    • The Stone Prisoner (adds a new character, plus quests relating to said character)
    • Return to Ostagar (adds a quest)
    • Awakening (expansion; raises level cap and adds a new, shorter campaign set after Origins)
    • Feastday Gifts and Pranks (gifts for party members; the former raises your Relationship Values, and the later lowers it)
    • The Darkspawn Chronicles (What If scenario where you play as a Darkspawn during the finale of Origins)
    • Leliana's Song (short quest that takes place before Origins and serves as Leliana’s backstory)
    • Golems of Amgarrak (short quest that takes place outside Origins and Awakening)
    • Witch Hunt (short quest detailing the whereabouts of Morrigan after Origins)
  • Dragon Age II
    • The Black Emporium (shop with better, more expensive items)
    • The Exiled Prince (adds additional character and his questline)
    • Legacy (quest outside the main game, playable from any point in the story)
    • Mark of the Assassin (quest outside the main game, playable from any point, with a Guest Star Party Member)
    • Two sets of item packs. Each set has a Warrior, Rogue, and Mage item pack, which can either be purchased separately or in a bundle.
  • Dragon Quest IX
    • Extra Quests, and Special Guests at the Inn (who give you cosplay gear).
    • Notable in that it is not only free, but automatically given to the player when connecting to the online shop if they are available.
  • Duke Nukem Forever
    • Hail to the Icons Parody Pack: Several new game modes and new maps for multiplayer
    • The Doctor Who Cloned Me: New singleplayer campaign. Also comes with four new multiplayer maps.
  • Dynasty Warriors 6 Empires: Extra wardrobe options for the Edit Officer mode, as well as nine bonus music tracks from the original Dynasty Warriors Fighting Game. In an awesome move on Koei's part, all of it is absolutely free.
  • The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
    • Horse Armor Pack - Originally worth $10. One of the more prominent examples of useless downloadable content.
    • Orrery
    • Wizard's Tower
    • Thieves' Den
    • Mehrunes' Razor
    • Vile Lair
    • Spell Tomes
    • Knights of the Nine
    • Shivering Isles (A full expansion, strictly speaking. Listed here for completeness.)
    • The Fighter's Stronghold
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
    • A free high-texture pack
    • Fall of the Space Core, Vol. 1, created in partnership with Valve Software and released through the Steam Workshop, adds the titular core from Portal 2 to the game.
    • Dawnguard, the first major expansion pack, which drops the player in the middle of a war between the ancient Dawnguard and vampires.
  • Eternal Sonata has the Piano Key, which unlocks the Chopin piano pieces...which can also be unlocked by simply progressing through the game.
  • Fire Emblem Awakening marks the debut for DLC in its modern form for Nintendo systems.
    • "Another Story: Spirit Talisman": A probable series of stories about an old man, his talismans summoning the spirits of ancient heroes, and Krom's adventures with them in the "other-world". Completing the currently-released chapters allows the player to gain Marth and Roy (yes, we know what you're thinking) as playable characters.
    • "Another Story: King versus King (Emblem Episode)": In the "other-world", King Marth of Archanea and King Celice of Jugdral, heroic and noble both, nonetheless do battle. Krom decides to lend his aid to Marth, his ancestor, in this conflict. Completing this chapter allows the player to gain Leaf as a playable character.
  • Grand Theft Auto IV
  • The Guitar Hero series from GH2 onward have downloadable songs.
  • All three of Humongous Entertainment's One Stop Fun Shop titles had extra art that could be downloaded off their now-gone site.
  • Fable II
    • Knothole Island
    • See the Future
      • There are "Free" and "Premium" versions of both DLC. Free means you obtain some of the items from the new areas, but you're unable to actually go there. That's where the Premium version comes in.
  • Fable III DLC is mostly comprised of various items, but there are also two Quest Packs: Understone, and Traitor's Keep.
  • Fallout 3
    • Operation: Anchorage
    • The Pitt
    • Broken Steel (Raises level cap by 10, expands main storyline)
    • Point Lookout
    • Mothership Zeta
  • Fallout: New Vegas
    • Dead Money
    • Honest Hearts
    • Old World Blues
    • Lonesome Road
      • Each of the above 4 DLC increases the level cap by 5, and adds a few perks to choose from when leveling up.
    • Courier's Stash (Compilation of all the Pre-Order Bonuses)
    • Gun Runners' Arsenal (Adds more weapons, weapon mods, ammunition types, challenges, and achievements/trophies)
  • Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo Tales: Five promotional cards for the in-game card game; distributed through store demo kiosks. They can also be unlocked with button codes, but four of the five codes for the US version have never been released or discovered.
  • Final Fantasy XIII-2
    • Weapons:
      • Serah: Genji Bow (originally a Preorder Bonus), Seraphic Wing, Azrael (Xbox 360 exclusive)
      • Noel: Muramasa, Catastrophe Blade
    • Outfits:
    • Coliseum Opponents (defeating them allows you to use them as an ally):
    • Episodes (additional side stories; adds a companion upon completion)
      • Sazh: Heads of Tails? (also adds additional Serendipity content)
      • Snow: Perpetual Battlefield
      • Lightning: Requiem of the Goddess
  • The Gunstringer
    • The Wavy Tube Man Chronicles (free DLC that is reminiscent of Mad Dog McCree)
    • Real Big Shootin' (Shooting gallery)
    • El Diablo's 'Merican Adventure
  • Heavy Rain
    • Heavy Rain Chronicles 1: The Taxidermist
    • Two unreleased DLC featuring Norman Jayden and the Origami Killer.
  • The iDOLM@STER is loaded with this.
  • Infinite Undiscovery has 2 DLC: A Voucher and B Voucher, both of which allow you to purchase item creation materials at any shop.
  • Just Cause 2’s DLC is mostly comprised of weapons and vehicles.
  • Just Dance 2 and 3 have a number of extra songs to download.
  • Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
    • Online Pass (House of Valor questline); comes free with a new copy.
    • Might, Finesse, and Sorcery Bonus Packs (additional weapons and armor). Can be purchased separately or in a bundle.
    • The Legend of Dead Kel (Additional questline)
    • Teeth of Naros (Additional questline)
  • LA Noire
    • A Slip of the Tongue case.
    • Reefer Madness case.
    • The Naked City case.
    • Nicholson Electroplating case.
    • The Consul's Car case; exclusive to PS3.
    • The Badge Pursuit Challenge, which adds 20 police badges to collect around L.A.; finding them all earns you the Button Man suit, which gives extra ammo to all weapons.
    • Chicago Piano Gun, which can be obtained in any police trunk.
    • The Sharpshooter suit, which increases the accuracy of pistols and rifles.
    • The Broderick suit, which increases damage dealt in fist fights.
    • The Rockstar Pass is a pack consisting of all of the above, minus the Consul's Car case and Piano Gun.
  • Left 4 Dead
    • Survival Pack (Adds Survival mode and two complete Versus mode campaigns)
    • Crash Course (Additional map, plus new achievements, and an updated heads-up display for VS mode, allowing you to see the cool down meters of other players)
    • The Sacrifice (Additional map, plus new achievements)
  • Left 4 Dead 2
    • The Sacrifice (Additional map, plus new achievements). Also allows you to play as the L4D1 survivors in The Sacrifice, and ports No Mercy from the first game.
    • The Passing (Additional map, plus new achievements). Also adds Mutations and the M60 and Golf Club weapons.
    • Coming soon: Cold Stream and the other L4D1 maps.
  • Little Big Planet DLC is mostly costumes, usually taken from other media. However, there are a few level kits as well, like Metal Gear Solid and Pirates of the Caribbean.
  • Lost Odyssey has the Triple Bonus Pack (two items and a cutscene viewer), and the Dungeon Pack (adds a Bonus Dungeon near the end of the game, along with achievements).
  • Marvel Ultimate Alliance: Hero Pack (which added Cyclops, Nightcrawler, The Hulk, and Hawkeye) and a Villain Pack (which added Magneto, Sabretooth, Venom, and Doctor Doom) for the Xbox 360 and PS3 editions. A rather infamous case because these were quickly pulled off the market by Activision, citing poor sales. Currently, the only way to get these is by hunting down the rare Gold Edition which already came with the DLC.
  • Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2: Again, bonus character downloads on the 360 and PS3 which added Black Panther, Psylocke, Cable, Magneto, and Carnage. It also made Juggernaut downloadable as well, who was only a preorder bonus. Activision still hadn't learned, and pulled them off the market shortly after the game was released. This meant that anyone who got the game for the holiday in 2009 would be screwed over. The complaints were so bad that Activision finally decided to make them available again... until the end of 2010. And unlike the first game, which had a version with all of the DLC available, there still isn't one for the second game.
  • Marvel Vs Capcom 3 has Jill and Shuma-Gorath as DLC characters, and DLC costumes for everyone.
  • Mass Effect 1:
  • Mass Effect 2: Dedicated producers of it through the "Cerberus Network" client. Up until October 2010, they released one DLC every month. The packs included:
    • Two additional character packs: Zaeed: The Price of Revenge (a free pack with a new character, story mission and heavy weapon) and Kasumi: Stolen Memory (a paid pack that introduces a thief with her own story mission, as well as a new submachine gun).
    • Several armor packs, including the Cerberus Assault Gear and the Aegis Pack (which included a set of armor packed with stat bonuses and a sniper rifle that is incredibly overpowered).
    • Several Alternate Appearance Packs, which offer unique outfits for squadmates (as of September 2011, two have been released, comprising half of the available teammates).
    • The Firewalker Pack, a free DLC which introduces the Mako's successor, the Hammerhead, and offers a number of driving-based missions.
    • Several weapons and packs, including the Arc Projector and the Equalizer and Firepower Packs.
    • Overlord, a series of missions where Shepard must stop a rogue VI at a Cerberus facility.
    • Lair of the Shadow Broker, a massive storyline expanding on a subplot from the first game. Includes a full series of missions, new gameplay enhancements, and the ability to view archived footage of supporting and main characters from the franchise.
    • Arrival, a smaller story acting as a prologue to Mass Effect 3, involving the oncoming Reaper invasion and the unprecedented destruction of a mass relay.
    • Mass Effect: Genesis, a digital comic book that allows people who haven't played the first game to learn about the story and make the important choices (chosing your love interest, saving or killing the rachni queen, sparing or killing Wrex, chosing whether Kaidan or Ashley die, saving the Council or let them die, and naming Anderson or Udina as a council member. Included for free in the PS3 version, along with the Cerberus Network, Overlord, Kasumi, and the Shadow Broker.
  • Mass Effect 3:
    • The N7 Collector's Edition includes codes for an N7 Weapon Pack (featuring a submachine gun, sniper rifle, pistol and shotgun), a robotic dog who will appear on the Normandy, a casual hoodie to wear on the ship and an alternate appearance pack for 4 of the squad members.
    • From Ashes, which includes a new squadmate (a living Prothean named Javik), a new area to explore (Eden Prime), a prototype Particle Rifle, and alternate costumes for every squadmate. It's free to anyone with the N7 Collector's Edition (and $10 for everyone else).
    • The Chakram Launcher and Knight-Reckoner Armor can only be unlocked if you play through the Kingdoms of Amalur demo.
    • Dual Omni-Blades are unlocked in the game if you played through the ME3 official demo.
    • All games that were preordered before launch day received an M-55 Argus assault rifle. All games preordered through EA's Origin service received an AT-12 Raider shotgun.
    • Preordering the game from Gamestop gets you an exclusive "N7 Warfare Gear", which includes the N7 Defender Armor and Valkyrie Rifle.
    • Owning a copy of Battlefield 3 and linking it to an EA Origin account gives you a special "Battlefield 3 Kit" containing re-skins of ME weapons that can be used in the "Galaxy at War" multiplayer mode. You also gain access to the Battlefield Soldier in multiplayer.
    • The Resurgence Pack, a free multiplayer pack which includes two new maps, and introduces the Geth and Batarians as playable races, in addition to one new character class each for both the Krogan and Asari.
    • Rebellion Multiplayer Expansion, another free pack which includes 2 maps and 6 additional characters.
    • BioWare also plans to release an extended cut of the ending for free, with the intention of adding more context and closure to the infamous ending.
  • Mega Man Powered Up
  • Mega Man X: The iOS port, specifically. In one of the more egregious examples on this page, you can, instead of finding the Heart Tanks and armor parts yourself, buy them.
  • Mega Man Star Force
    • 1: Andromeda Giga Card, L.M. Shin Brother data
    • 2: King Grandeur and Le Mu Mega and Giga Cards, 1st Mega Man and L.M. Shin Brother data
    • 3: Acid Arrest and Crimson Meteor Mega and Giga Cards
  • Mortal Kombat 9
  • NHL Hockey: Some titles in the series allow for players to download updated rosters and added improvements to gameplay.
  • Pokémon: Especially in Generation IV.
  • Portal 2 has a bunch of cosmetic additions to the co-op mode robots available through the Robot Enrichment Center. A DLC is also be available with the Razer Hydra, adding chambers where the portal gun gets abilities like the PhysGun in Garry's Mod.
    • Peer Review includes a Time Trial mode for single player and co-op mode for best time and least amount of portals used. Co-op also has 9 new test chambers with expanded storyline for it.
  • Professor Layton has weekly downloadable puzzles.
  • Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords has Revenge of the Plague Lord, which adds a separate set of quests to the game.
  • Red Dead Redemption
    • Outlaws to the End Co-op Mission Pack
    • Legends and Killers pack
    • Liars and Cheats pack
    • Hunting and Trading Pack
    • Undead Nightmare pack
      • Undead Nightmare Collection (bundles Liars and Cheats, Legends and Killers, and Undead Nightmare DLC)
    • War Horse
    • Golden Guns Weapon Pack
    • Deadly Assassin Outfit
    • Myths and Mavericks Bonus Pack
  • Resident Evil 5
    • Lost in Nightmares
    • Desperate Escape
  • Raliworks
  • Rock Band
    • Constant new song updates. Currently, there are over 3000 songs.
  • Sakura Taisen 3
    • "Drama files" containing small stories. Some cost money (well, DreamPoints) to download.
  • Saints Row the Third
    • Invincible Pack (cheats)
    • Funtime! Pack (additional weapon, vehicle, and outfit)
    • Money Shot Pack
    • Shark Attack Pack (additional weapon and hat)
    • Z Style Pack (additional weapon and hat)
    • Explosive Combat Pack (additional weapon and outfit)
    • Warrior Pack (4 additional outfits)
    • Bloodsucker Pack
    • Season Pass (unlocks the following 4 DLC as they're released)
      • Genkibowl VII
      • Gangstas In Space
      • The Trouble With Clones
      • Nyte Blayde Pack (Outfits and vehicles)
    • Viewer Packs: Allows you to play online co-op with someone that has one of the DLC in the Season Pass (minus Nyte Blayde), if you don't have it.
    • Special Ops Vehicle Pack (Saints-themed vehicles)
    • Steelport Gangs Pack (6 outfits)
  • Samba De Amigo
    • New songs. In the Dreamcast version, it was free; in the Wii version, it costs money.
  • The Sims (the first game) had free DLC: NPCs, objects, music from Superstar, wallpapers, and tools to use with the game. The official site for the first game has, unfortunately, closed, sometime during the 10 years since the game was released.
  • The Sims 3, as well as having the usual Expansion Packs associated with the Sims franchise, has a DLC Store which includes:
    • New worlds (both free and pay)
    • New clothing and hair
    • Home decor and home improvement
    • The occasional branded/sponsored content
    • "Premium Content" (items with new interations not available in the base game or in expansion packs)
      • Prices vary depending on what's being bought: a new top for a teen sim can cost as little as 25 points/$0.25, while currently (Nov 2011) the most expensive is the Best of 2010 Collection containing 16 of the most popular DLC sets released in 2010 for 6k points/$60.
  • Sonic Adventure
    • Special time trial stages for online records
    • Modified promotional stages for Reebok/AT&T
    • Christmas, Halloween, Y 2 K events
    • Special Chao
  • Sonic Adventure 2
    • New kart racing stages and karts.
    • Menu themes
  • Sonic Unleashed has Adventure Packs for various locations, including Chun-Nan, Spagonia, Holoska, Mazuri, Apotos & Shamar, and Empire City & Adabat.
  • Soulcalibur IV
    • Yoda or Darth Vader, depending on which console you bought the game on (360 for the former, PS3 for the latter). There's also a number of holiday-themed clothing pieces for Character Creation mode and music from the original Soulcalibur.
      • To clarify: Yoda was exclusive to 360, Darth Vader to PS3. The one that isn't available in the "vanilla" version is the one that can be bought.
  • Star Wars: The Force Unleashed has a Mission in Jedi Temple, Tatooine, and Hoth. All 3 are included in the Ultimate Sith Edition.
  • Street Fighter X Tekken is notorious for the absolute shitstorm of controversy caused by the discovery that pretty much all the content being sold as DLC was already on the disc.
    • Gems (basically, equipment that powers up players in a crisis)
    • Customization colours
    • Alternate costumes
    • Fourteen characters (two, Mega Man and Pac-Man, are free; the other twelve are planned to be released in the fall, more than half a year after the game's release date).
  • Supreme Commander 2
    • Infinite War Battle Pack One: New units, some returning from the first game.
  • Tales of Vesperia has a lot of DLC, all of which fall under the category of Bribing Your Way to Victory:
    • Three packs of 300,000 Gald.
    • Battle Support Item Pack.
    • Camping Kit.
    • Customize Packs for the various characters.
    • Two Gel Sets, one of which is free.
    • Two Level Up + 10 packs.
    • Four Level Up + 5 packs.
    • Pack o’ Useful Stuff.
    • Three Recipe Sets.
    • Three Synthesis Kits.
    • Trial Skill Packs for the various characters.
    • Trial Synthesis Kit.
  • Wipeout
    • Pure: Goteki 45, Tigron, Van Uber and Icaras vehicles; Iridia, Anulpha Pass, Odessa Hays, Porta Kora, Exostra Run, Uber Mall, Staten Park, Sebenco Peak, Vohl Square, Koltiwa and Khara Descent tracks; and even some remixes of old background music. (No longer available via official sources.)
    • Pulse: Mirage, Auricom, Harimau and Icaras crafts and Orcus, Vostok Reef, Gemini Dam, and Edgewinter tracks (Europe only)
    • HD: Fury (Adds 3 new modes and 8 new tracks)
  • X-Universe: DLC is generally incorporated into major patches.
    • Bonus Pack of signed scripts (free)
    • X3: Terran Conflict:
      • A Place of Sunshine (bonus sector distributed over Steam)
      • X3: Albion Prelude expansion ($9.99 to owners of TC, free to owners of the X-Superbox series collection)
  • You Don't Know Jack (2011)
    • 4 separate Jack Packs, each of which adds 10 new episodes.
  • The original Zoo Tycoon had some free downloadable animals, decorations, and Mexican and Atlantean theme packs.

Notes

  1. Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Reptile, Ermac, Kitana, Mileena, Jade, Smoke, and Noob Saibot
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