No word of a lie, I’m pretty excited for the next Company of Heroes game. Set on the Eastern front, this sequel looks to bring a lot of new mechanics to the old formula like vision cones, ice with hit points and building fires for warmth. What it’s also bringing is a new tiding of evil in the form of pre-order reward tiers.
If you take a look at the Company of Heroes 2 page on Steam, you might notice that it has a section called “Pre-Purchase Rewards”, promising additional goodies if more people pre-order the game. I’ve kind of accepted the status quo of pre-orders in the gaming industry but this seems like a step too far to me. Even the new XCOM: Enemy Unknown game does this, and even though it looks like a lot of fun, these pre-purchase tiers make me hold back a bit.
The problem I have with the pre-purchase tiers in Company of Heroes 2 is that it makes it look like Relic is trying to add cash-stops to a full-price game. Things like XP boosts and character boosts might fly in a single-player game, but in a multiplayer arena that doesn’t really work. Eventually all that evens out, but for the first couple of weeks that leads to a huge imbalance.
So what do you guys think? Are pre-order reward tiers the equivalent of the devil? Is this just another way to get those oh-so-important pre-order dollars?