Downloadable Content (DLC) has become a staple in the world of video games. Some gamers may be skeptical about spending more money on DLC games, but the truth is, many DLCs offer incredible additional content that can significantly enhance your gaming experience. In this article, we’ll explore some of the most noteworthy DLCs in the gaming world and how they have contributed to making the base games even better.
The Power of DLC Games
BioShock 2: Minerva’s Den – Unveiling the Heart of Rapture
BioShock 2, while a sequel to a beloved game, often fell short of the original in players’ eyes. However, it managed to redeem itself with the Minerva’s Den DLC. This expansion delivered a captivating story that truly captured the essence of BioShock. It provided a fitting farewell to the haunting city of Rapture, making it a must-play addition to the game.
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – A Blast of Retro Fun
Far Cry 3 revitalized the franchise with its modern take on open-world gameplay. It also introduced players to the whimsical Blood Dragon DLC. Packed with boundless humor and a distinctive art style, this DLC provided a short but incredibly entertaining experience that stood out as a memorable addition to the game.
Monster Hunter: World – Expanding the Hunt with Iceborne
Monster Hunter: World garnered immense popularity for its accessibility and deep gameplay. The Iceborne DLC expanded the game’s already vast world, introducing players to an even more extensive array of monsters and challenges. For many, Iceborne is considered an essential expansion that enriches the game’s full potential.
Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss – A Dark and Enthralling Journey
Dark Souls is renowned for its challenging gameplay and intricate lore. Artorias of the Abyss, one of the game’s DLCs, not only delved deeper into the game’s lore but also introduced some of the series’ most memorable bosses. This DLC marked a significant shift towards faster and more aggressive combat, setting the stage for the series’ evolution.
Sleeping Dogs: Kung-Fu Adventures in Hong Kong
Sleeping Dogs, an underrated gem, combined open-world exploration with engaging combat. The game’s DLCs, including Nightmare in North Point, Year of the Snake, and the standout Zodiac Tournament, added exciting stories and new gameplay experiences. The Zodiac Tournament, in particular, paid homage to classic kung-fu movies, providing a unique and entertaining twist.
Splatoon 2: Octo Expansion – A Fresh Wave of Content
Splatoon 2 introduced the Octo Expansion, a game-changer for both fans and newcomers. This DLC not only introduced octoling characters but also offered an abundance of new missions and gear. With its fresh content, the Octo Expansion ensured that Splatoon 2 remained engaging and never grew stale.
Shovel Knight: Exploring the Expansive World
Shovel Knight, a critically acclaimed game, continued to impress players with a series of DLCs and free updates. These expansions, including Specter of Torment, King of Cards, and Plague of Shadows, allowed players to explore different characters and their unique stories. Additionally, Shovel Knight Showdown turned the game into a thrilling fighting experience.
Immortals Fenyx Rising: Mythical Adventures Await
Immortals Fenyx Rising, a game with a lighthearted take on Greek mythology, already offered a substantial open-world experience. However, the Myths of The Eastern Realm expansion added a new map and a brand new protagonist, effectively creating a game within a game. This expansion, released in time for Christmas 2020, was a significant addition that provided players with even more reasons to explore the world of Immortals.
Hitman Trilogy: A World of Assassination Evolves
The Hitman Trilogy, released under a “games as a service” model, constantly evolved to keep players engaged. With the addition of new targets, goals, and rewards through Elusive targets, as well as DLC missions like Patient Zero, the games provided a fresh experience. Players could even create their own Elusive targets, ensuring that Hitman always felt fresh and exciting.
The Outer Worlds: Perilous Adventures in the Outer Reaches
The Outer Worlds, reminiscent of Mass Effect and Fallout, offered a narrative-driven experience. The Peril on Gorgon and Murder on Eridanos DLCs expanded on this narrative, introducing new perks, flaws, NPCs, items, and quests. These DLCs also raised the level cap, allowing players to build even more powerful characters. Murder on Eridanos, in particular, focused on storytelling, making it a must-play for narrative enthusiasts.
Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction – A Timeless Classic
Diablo 2, despite being over two decades old, remains relevant to modern gamers. The Lord of Destruction expansion, beloved by fans, introduced two new classes, Assassin and Druid, along with an additional Act to the story. It also brought numerous new items and the ability to play the game in higher resolution, enriching the game’s overall experience.
Baldur’s Gate 2: Throne of Bhaal – Epic Conclusion and Beyond
Baldur’s Gate 2, often compared to Diablo 2, also offered popular expansion content. Throne of Bhaal provided an epic conclusion to the game’s story and explored the protagonists’ history further. Additionally, this DLC introduced a higher experience cap, a new dungeon, and the Wild Mage class, along with various abilities, spells, and items.
Dishonored: Expanding the World of Stealth
Dishonored, a stealth series known for its variety and depth, featured DLC content that felt like standalone games. The Knife of Dunwall and The Brigmore Witches, in particular, played and felt like unique experiences while acting as a bridge to Dishonored 2. Dishonored 2 continued this trend with fantastic standalone DLC of its own.
Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare – A Gory Twist
Red Dead Redemption, set in the American Wild West, was already a massive game. However, it surpassed expectations with the Undead Nightmare DLC, transforming the game into a Hammer Horror-themed zombie adventure. With weaponized Holy Water, Sasquatches, and more, this DLC delivered a unique and entertaining twist on the Wild West.
Grand Theft Auto 4: Expanding the Criminal Empire
Grand Theft Auto 4 took a grittier approach compared to its predecessors. However, its standalone DLC episodes, The Ballad of Gay Tony and The Lost and The Damned, added depth and complexity to the game’s narrative. The Lost and the Damned allowed players to immerse themselves in a biker-themed storyline, while The Ballad of Gay Tony provided an exceptional storytelling experience. These DLCs enriched the GTA 4 storyline and offered valuable content.
The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim – Expanding the Legendary World
The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim, a beloved open-world RPG, introduced three DLCs that were warmly welcomed by fans. Dawnguard, Dragonborn, and Hearthfire expanded the game in various ways. Dawnguard focused on the war between werewolves and vampires, while Hearth
fire allowed players to build houses and adopt children. Dragonborn introduced a new boss and extended the game’s lore. These DLCs provided additional characters, equipment, maps, and countless hours of gameplay for Skyrim enthusiasts.
The Last Of Us: Left Behind – A Heartfelt Prequel
The Last of Us delivered a compelling narrative, and its DLC, Left Behind, took players on a journey into Ellie’s backstory. While it may not offer the same number of hours as Skyrim’s content, Left Behind is a well-designed and emotional experience that sheds light on Ellie’s past and adds depth to her character.
Mass Effect 2 and 3: Expansive Universes Explored
Mass Effect 2 and 3 featured numerous DLCs that fans adored. Mass Effect 2 introduced Lair of the Shadow Broker, Overlord, Kasumi – Stolen Memory, Zaeed – The Price of Revenge, Normandy Crash Site, Firewalker, Genesis, and Arrival. The third game brought Citadel, Omega, Leviathan, From Ashes, and Extended Cut. These DLCs provided expansive content that felt integral to the overall story, enriching the Mass Effect universe.
The Dragon Age Series: Expanding the Lore
Similar to Mass Effect, the Dragon Age series featured DLCs that many players believed should have been part of the base game. Notable examples include Dragon Age Inquisition’s Trespasser and Dragon Age 2’s Legacy. These expansions introduced additional characters, locations, quests, and loot, allowing players to delve deeper into the rich lore of the Dragon Age world.
The Witcher 3: Blood and Wine – A Grand Finale
The Witcher 3, a beloved RPG, offered the Blood and Wine DLC as its grand finale. This expansion wrapped up the game’s story, similar to Dragon Age Inquisition’s Trespasser. With over 30 hours of additional gameplay, Blood and Wine provided an immersive and rewarding experience, making it a must-play for fans of The Witcher 3.
In the world of gaming, DLCs have the power to transform a good game into a phenomenal one. These expansions, whether they add new stories, characters, challenges, or worlds, have become integral to the gaming experience. While some DLCs may disappoint, the ones mentioned in this article have set a high standard for what downloadable content can achieve. As gamers, we should celebrate these exceptional expansions and encourage developers to continue crafting memorable DLCs for the games we love.