Mario Golf World Tour Pre Launch Details
The Mario Golf World Tour demo has landed in Europe, and will be available in North America this Thursday. Early indications from some of the major gaming news sites is that the newest Mario Golf is just another example of the top notch work that Nintendo is doing. From my own experiences with the game, it is a worthy successor to Mario Golf Toadstool Tour, albeit one that was too long in the making.
Over the last few weeks, further details about the game have been released. The first big news item was Nintendo’s partnership with Callaway Golf. For the remainder of 2014, Nintendo will host numerous Callaway Golf tournaments. All participants will receive Callaway Golf themed balls and apparel which will enhance the abilities of their Mii characters.Winners of the tournaments will receive large amounts of in game currency.
The second big piece of news came with some controversy. Nintendo announced this week that Mario Golf will have 3 paid DLC packs available in May and June. Each pack will give players two additional courses and one additional character. The cost of the packs are $5.99 each, or $14.99 for the season pass. For those who buy the season pass, a special Golden Mario character will be playable. Golden Mario’s special ability is to produce coins for every yard the ball travels, which will make buying upgrades for your Mii character much easier. For those that decide to purchase all three DLC packs separately, Golden Mario will be unlocked after the third pack is downloaded in May.
While early previews of the game are very good, reaction to DLC from both media and gamers has been poor. Most people wish Nintendo would stick to what has worked in the past: a set price for a completed game. Others believe that Nintendo is trying to line their pockets by pulling content out of the finished game and charging players for it. I find both these accusations ludicrous, despite knowing that the first DLC pack will be available on launch day, May 2nd.
Nintendo’s VP of sales, Scott Moffitt, wrote this in the press release:
We’re letting fans expand their experience with Mario Golf: World Tour. Some players might be content hitting the links on the numerous courses already included with the game, while others will appreciate the option of being able to add to their fairway fun with new courses and characters.”
Moffitt has summed up the DLC well. Mario Golf World Tour is a massive game with enough content to keep players busy for hours upon hours. The game ships with 126 holes spanning 10 unique courses. In comparison, Toadstool Tour in 2003 launched with only six courses, and one additional par 3 course. In the United States, World Tour is launching at a cheaper rate than most other 3DS games: a meager $29.99 rather then the usual $34.99. Toadstool Tour launched for $59.99 when it was released.
When it comes to DLC, and more specifically day one DLC, my philosophy has usually been “If you don’t like it, don’t buy it.” I think this fits again. Nintendo has offered up more content then would normally be available in a Mario sports game, and for only $14.99, players can add to their experience. The potential alternative would be a 3DS game launching at $44.99 – $49.99. If 3DS sales figures are any indication, games at this higher pricing tier tend to sell less. Gamers are not always willing to pay close to console price for a handheld game.
For those upset over Nintendo’s foray into the DLC marketplace, step back and realize that Nintendo has offered up more than enough content to justify both their day one price for the game, as well as their desire to launch day one DLC. In the end, if the game is as good as many are saying, purchasing the extra content will not be a problem for most people.
This game is already on my pre-order list so expect a review of all the games features in early May, soon after launch.