They’ve discovered this brand new phenomenon called DLC.
Earlier this month, Nintendo did something that was totally unprecedented for Pokemon as a series when they announced an expansion pass for Pokemon Sword and Shield, containing two separate expansions that will be adding in plenty of new content to the games. While post-launch support for games by way of DLC has been a common practice in the industry for well over a decade, it’s something that Nintendo have only recently discovered- and they really like it, and want to keep doing it.
In their recent quarterly financial report, Nintendo talked about being “focused on initiatives that keep consumers playing after the software has been released.”
“We are also focused on initiatives that keep consumers playing after the software has been released,” they wrote. “As announced recently, we plan to update the in-game content and distribute new add-on content for Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. And as we’ve mentioned before, we’ve decided to create even more additional fighters for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.”
To be fair, post-launch DLC is something that we’ve been seeing quite a bit of from Nintendo in recent years. In addition to the aforementioned Pokemon expansion and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s fighter pass that added five characters, six more characters will be added to the game as DLC this year. Luigi’s Mansion 3 will also be getting two multiplayer DLCs this year.
Prior to this, there have been huge new paid expansions that have released for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild with The Champion’s Ballad, for Splatoon 2 with Octo Expansion, and for Xenoblade Chronicles 2 with Torna- The Golden Country. Clearly, their track record with post-launch support has been spotless so far- here’s hoping that can continue.