Dragon’s Dogma 2 Controversy: The Impact of Microtransactions on Game Scores and Player Trust

by Kristina
3 minutes read

Another week, another controversy surrounding a botched video game launch. This time, the heavy criticism is being leveled at Capcom and its long-awaited action RPG Dragon’s Dogma 2.

Having benefited from a plethora of positive previews in mainstream gaming publications, the hype for Dragon’s Dogma 2 was in full effect prior to its launch.

As many expected, the game received positive reviews across the board. Naturally, this elevated players’ expectations even higher. But all was not as it seemed.

In a dramatic turn of events on release day, it was revealed that Dragon’s Dogma 2 includes a curious collection of 21 microtransactions. Disappointingly, these microtransactions grant more frequent access to features many gamers deem essential for any action RPG. This includes fast travel and character customization.

Upon learning that information about these microtransactions was included in the review guide provided to publications covering the game, we decided to investigate how many outlets chose to make mention of the paid DLC in their review.

As we have reported, one publication has already admitted to not looking at the review guide prior to playing Dragon’s Dogma 2. But what about other popular gaming publications – did they reveal and explain the game’s microtransactions?

How many reviews mention Dragon’s Dogma 2 microtransactions? Out of the 25 English language reviews of Dragon’s Dogma 2‘s PC version on Metacritic, only two mention the microtransactions.

It’s worth pointing out that both of these reviewers (from XboxEra and TouchArcade) said they didn’t find it necessary to purchase the paid DLC to enjoy the game.

Despite this, players have the right to know exactly what they’re getting when they buy a full-priced title. And if a game deliberately holds content back so it can be offered as paid DLC, that may be a dealbreaker for some.

Given that Capcom informed gaming outlets that Dragon’s Dogma 2 would include microtransactions, it is unclear why so many failed to highlight it.

Why critics should rescore Dragon’s Dogma 2 In light of the revelations of Dragon’s Dogma 2‘s microtransactions, it is reasonable for gamers to expect outlets to rescore the game.

The PC version of Dragon’s Dogma 2 currently has an impressive “metascore” of 90, which indicates “Universal Acclaim”. When taken at face value, this could be more than enough to encourage people to purchase the game.

Similarly, the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S versions also have positive metascores and many critic reviews for those platforms fail to mention the microtransactions.

Because the majority of reviews haven’t factored the microtransactions into their scores, they can’t be considered reflective of the state of the final product.

Therefore, it is only reasonable for reviewers to revisit their assessments of Dragon’s Dogma 2 and incorporate the paid DLC into their scores. That way, potential buyers can get the full picture of the product they are purchasing and know exactly what to expect once they get stuck in.

It’s time for gaming outlets to take a stand against unsavoury business practices and reconsider their scores. After all, how can it be that a game is “universally acclaimed” among critics but considered “mixed” by players – something isn’t adding up.

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