EA has had a significant amount of controversies much like any other gaming company in the past over how they do business. To a handful of gamers, DLC, especially DLC that’s already on the disk and needs to be unlocked, is pretty much a hidden tax on a game.
The controversy about exclusive DLC for people who preorder is that those who do not have the DLC could run into problems during online play. If someone doesn’t have the chosen map downloaded, then they will be unable to play it simply because they didn’t put money down for a game that hasn’t been released yet. On the user-driven news site Reddit, a boycott has been loosely organized in an attempt to get EA to change their tune.
What this is centered around is weapon and map packs. Even though it’s likely a trivial matter for weapons to be put onto the disk and needs DLC to unlock it, there is a chance these weapons can be heavily unbalanced or people who use them/do not use them can only play on specific servers due to compatibility issues.
Several gamers on the EA Forum have voiced their opinion, some believing that exclusive DLC should have absolutely no impact on gameplay whatsoever.
Another reason for the outrage is the fact that the developer for Battlefield 3, DICE, had no apparent say in this, and that the publisher EA is responsible for the marketing idea.
Those who do not preorder the game will have to pay extra for the Karkland expansion and get all the maps which will be coming out after release. However this will not include the exclusive guns and ammunition which is the most infuriating thing. Nobody wants to walk out of a store with an incomplete game.
Some users have gone as far as cancelling the preorders for their games.
I have my own opinions on DLC. I feel that if I walk out of the store, I should own the entire game right there and not have to invest more money into it (expansion packs and monthly subscription fees don’t count). Especially on DLC released on the first day (at a price) and DLC that unlocks things already on the disk, or content that is region-specific.
I wouldn’t mind paying a sum of money for a large amount of maps, skins, weapons, and several other goodies that are worth the money however, but locking people out of DLC is toeing the line in my own opinion.