The online pass system has quickly become a staple of the current-generation AAA release, presenting additional value for purchases of new products in an attempt to monetise – and perhaps even marginalise – pre-owned sales. As the adoption rate of such practices increases however, some publisher have realised that simply locking online gameplay behind the pass may not be enough, as Codemasters Racing proves with the forthcoming release of DiRT Showdown.
In addition to online play, DiRT Showdown also allows YouTube video sharing only to those with the VIP Pass bundled with new copies of the videogame, or purchased from the Xbox LIVE Marketplace or PlayStation Network. Such a premise already exists however, with DiRT Showdown’s predecessor DiRT 3 doing much the same. New in DiRT Showdown however, are some exclusive vehicles only accessible via a VIP Pass.
The Jackson Adventurer and Subaru Impreza WRX STI GD are only available via the DiRT Showdown VIP Pass, and both come bundled with additional liveries. Given that the VIP Pass is only 108 KB (on Xbox LIVE Marketplace) it would be easy to assume that this content is already included on the disc, but is locked away for those who do not use a VIP Pass. DiRT Showdown launches on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC later this week and Electronic Theatre will keep you bring you an in-depth review of the videogame tomorrow.