Mass Effect 2 hovertank DLC deploying late March

Hammerhead vehicle and five new missions coming to BioWare's sci-fi RPG next month; free for Cerberus Network members.

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Mass Effect 2's critical success has thus far turned into commercial success as well. According to EA, the game's initial shipment figures on the Xbox 360 and PC hit 2 million.

One way EA has been fueling those sales is by offering free add-on content to those who purchase new copies of the game through the Cerberus Network. Having released the first batch of extra content as a day-one download, BioWare said this week that the next add-on pack, titled Firewalker, will be available in late March. Those who picked up a used copy of Mass Effect 2 can access the new content by downloading the Cerberus Network for $15.

The Hammerhead should have its uses.

The Firewalker pack introduces the Hammerhead hovertank, which effectively replaces the all-terrain Mako seen in the original Mass Effect. Players will be able to run the Hammerhead through its paces in five all-new missions catered toward the vehicle. As for future additions to the game, BioWare said Mass Effect 2 will also be getting a new heavy weapon, which BioWare intends to unveil "very soon."

For more information, check out GameSpot's previous coverage of Mass Effect 2.

Discussion

247 comments
deimos113
deimos113

I personally refuse to buy my games and hardware from the developers. I always buy them second hand. Those back stabbing capitalists aint getting my money. Stuff the industry

max5f
max5f

The idea of the Cerberus Network is great, its an ongoing reward for people who buy new, and/or on day one. It allows you to buy a functional game albeit without any frills and at the same time gives the devs and publishers more opportunity to make a buck off you playing their product. Its allows publishers to make cash per players and allows for a 2nd hand market. Its a decent compromise.

TalonDarkfire
TalonDarkfire

@ Tentaculat Thank you kindly. I'm just now making my first playthrough on anything harder than Normal (going for my Insanity achievement - not an easy task) so I will definitely be getting the Pulse rifle this time around. Thanks for the info.

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

cont... The other thing you brought up, libraries and rentals... libraries are intended for community learning, they make a deal with publishers of all types. No one worries about that. Rentals are dying actually, but usually the rental companies also had deals with the publishers, it wasnt just "buying" the game once. Whats important to note also is that when publishers suffer, so to do the developers and the strategies used to make the games. A lot of what you think is free DLC is actually content they already made and kept out of the game. Rewarding, rather giving players the full game, for buying new is the latest strategy to fight the used game business retailers are exploiting. Whats funny is that publishers thought the console market was safer than the PC market which had piracy, they are finding out now that the console market has its own form of piracy, both in copying and in reselling the game once they used it. Add to the fact they have to purchase costly dev kits from the first party console manufacturer (nintendo, sony, microsoft), but they also have to give part of their sales to them as well. The effect is that they get hurt pretty bad, they are less willing to invest in certain genres and target audiences, and are forced into only appeal to the mass market rather than any mass niche.

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

@brownba3 a lot of the reasons smaller companies get "gobbled" up by publishers have everything to do with this subject. To be fair, one reason to become attached to a publisher and "gobbled up" is due to legal security. If you ever get sued, the contracts most often result in the publisher taking their place. The second reason is that developers will get paid regardless of how well or bad the game does, problem is, publishers take most of the profit. Here's the reason why developers end up getting gobbled, they cannot rely on their games selling very well in a market full of used game sales and piracy. No one argues against buying some used classics or hard to find titles, rather current gen games which rely on sales. Its hard to have high sales numbers if a large part of them are recycled over and over. More importantly it hurts the types of genre's you will see being made. If you are like me and loved Planescape torment, you will know that the quality of the rpg genre has suffered, and this is one of the byproducts. Btw i have 3 copies of Planescape torment, $7 new as a value title. Probably would have been the same price if you found it used.

brownba3
brownba3

Piracy is a different thing altogether - foremost being against the law. I agree with most of the arguments against them and those who rip the games (torrent?) and I don't use them - The the disc verification system is pretty good now (although a royal pain in the butt). -I don't really like having to play the game with a disc in the machine - because that has a tendency to wear out the disc ( I am talking PC here, but I have had to repurchase 360 discs for my son due to this and tried lots of the disc "renew" products).

brownba3
brownba3

Smo17&Shift have valid points - great argument against libraries and renting videos too...Will always be a market new games and for old games. (ebay is legal) Never would have played planescape torment(btw, good game - different - old school rpg) , or other games if I couldn't have bought them used - some not sold anymore. Rebuilt my NeverwinterNights library through used games - broken, scratched or lost discs. Buying used (or borrowing) games let you try game at a lower cost and if liked, you buy it. The argument at gaming companies being hurt for the money is a supect argument - look at all of the smaller companies gobbled up by those "hurting" gaming companies....(articles on rt) Make a good product and people will want to buy it. As long as the gaming companies reward me for buying new, I will do so. Free DLC w/a promo code for new or pre order is a great idea. The cerebrus network/buyable DLC for those who didn't buy new is a great idea for the used game buyer/user. Downloadable games - if they debug them....- are a great idea as well - BUT I had to "update" my dragon age for the DLC, it now crashes...(would rather own-have verified concerns about downloaded or online games ) Older games are often sold at a discount - What seems to be unmentioned is that there are many of these games that would not be played or audiences they would not reach due to their premium prices - their exposure to a broader audience can only help future sales. more rambling later

SocialAnXieTy
SocialAnXieTy

I like the idea of the Cerberus Network. Even if I'm borrowing the game from a friend and had to pay $15 for it, I still think it's a great idea that should be used more often.

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

@alixkid, Smo17 got exactly what I was saying. You say buying a used game is good for the player, it doesnt matter if its good for the publishers. Isnt that the same as piracy in its effect? Whats best for the player is getting the game free. The funny thing is, if you enjoy games and want to help the publisher and the developer out, you should always buy games new. If you buy it used, its not some noble or right thing to do, it just means you gave the retailer money for a game they already sold someone. They love it. This is why we are seeing a trend with DLC, many often leaving out features and content in order to sell it at a later date or as a strategy to at least get back some of the money lost. Video game developers and publishers would love for used game sales to be illegal, but thats not possible. You also see more of a push for Downloadable games, since believe it or not, the retailers like gamestop are somewhat enemies with the publisher, and grudgingly necessary friends. btw the whole Greedy corporations argument doesnt work unless you want to sound like a pirate, which at that point, buying used seems contradictory.

Smo17
Smo17

@alixkid I don't think his point was to say that people who buy used are as bad as pirates, but simply that they have the same impact (individually) on publishers and developers as pirates. These publishers and developers sure don't blame these people for buying used, but they certainly don't enjoy the fact that they aren't receiving money for their hard work. Giving free DLC to those who buy new gives buyers incentive to buy new as opposed to used. It's a win-win situation for the game companies and the gamers. But, yes, I agree that they got the DLC right this time. My only complaint is that I now need a bigger HDD...

alixkid
alixkid

@Shiftfallout Uumm Last i heard you buy a game you now own it if you want to trade it with a friend or sell it thats good for you, these company's are making tones of money. I'm pretty sure you got a bunch of used games at home. To each there own but to say we are as bad a pirates because we wait and buy a second hand game for $20 $30 $40 off is fine with me.

alixkid
alixkid

EA got the DL content right this time, i hate Companys (M$) who charge an arm and a leg for DL content that is old or should be free.

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

@brownba3 actually, the publishers are really hurting from used game sales. The problem is, casuals love buying used games, and then sell them to someone else again. Retailers are making a fine profit, but the publishers are losing tons of money. In fact, the problem is worse than piracy. Pirates dont pay the publisher for the game they DL, same goes for those who buy it used. People who buy used games in a way are no different than pirates in that the publisher doesnt get paid. Its like that problem back on PC's when friends would just share floppy disks to install the game. Some have accused piracy and PC gaming as hurting the industry, but its the second hand used market and retailers that can legally re-sell console games. Publishers are stupid to ignore the PC market which doesnt have the problem of used game sales.

brownba3
brownba3

Must say - didn't see the point of the same day DLC and then the cerebrus network, but spinmastah put it correctly - a reward for preorder and buying new - that works for me. Usually would buy the game a week later on ebay after someone more techy than I ripped it and then discarded it - however the long wait made me need the game.... so prodered and paid premium - DLC is a righteous reward. and if they keep doing it, I will preorder the next one. (BTW - I found out the expensive and NOOB way that although a game may be made for XBox360 and PC and you can buy the expansions for the Xbox with microsoft points, .... they don't work for the PC game... oops!) other than that (my bad!) Good job Bioware! until then, make mine Marvel....

KamikazeCanuck
KamikazeCanuck

Sweet. I loved the Mako though. Don't know what people had against it.

spinmastah
spinmastah

EA is finally the company that got it right on DLC. If you are a fan and support the game developer and producer by actually buying the game new, we give you free stuff to make your gaming experience better. Win Win for both, I find it interesting how many people are flaming about them having DLC so soon after release, don't forget people, its FREE. Since its free for me, I say bring on the DLC and add to an already amazing game. If you bought the game used, get over it, you are part of the problem, not the solution.

severe_009
severe_009

I'm a fan of the Mass Effect game, love both of them, but the game is turning into a shooter... Story is linear... Oh well...

BTroxell
BTroxell

this entire board is littered with double-digit thumbs downs and mods all over the place. Whats up with that? This should just be an average dlc/sales report article.

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

@ sSubZerOo What do you think ME2 is? The entire game is now an arcade shooter with missing rpg elements. The hovertank is hardly out of place. ME2 is player skill based, not character skill based which we saw more of in ME1. Sad really.

Nosnitsttam
Nosnitsttam

@Atombomb1981- yes the developers are the force behind DLC. they may not be behind pricing or how much gets released overall, but bioware announced continued support of the series through DLC when they unveiled Mass Effect 1 several years ago, and have apologized on a few occasions for failing to deliver on that promise, so they wanted to make it up with this game. I'm not sure if the 5 missions have any impact on the main story. sidequests rarely do. Is it odd to incorporate a new game mechanic like a vehicle now? sure. but its not something anyone has to get. If they play mass effect 3 without playing this they won't miss anything. so the core experience (what you get out of the box) is NOT changed. as for your metaphor about a movie, mass effect's story is still ongoing. it's not over until mass effect 3 and even then they'll release DLC. think of the content as special features or deleted scenes on the DVD. and since it's bioware's property, they can do what they want with it. i can't honestly believe that you're complaining about more mass effect. while it's refreshing that your issue is coming from a different angle, i still think you're insane. because whether or not you're correct, you still have the choice of ignoring the DLC and it will have no impact on your experience whatsoever.

LordDeArnise
LordDeArnise

Hovertank...I hope we can use something like that, and some kind of submariner for ME3. That would be awesome, because this trilogy is already "wicked sick".

Lizardking006
Lizardking006

wooh just mastered mass effect 2 got mass effect 1 mastered too well im ready for 3 all you reapers are gonna burn!!!

sSubZerOo
sSubZerOo

.. Am I the only one who thinks that a vehicle mechanic is absolutely unneccesary? It turns it into a arcade like shooter that draws completely away from your character, rpg elements and overall class your character is.

joksterz78
joksterz78

im happy with cerebus network thnk you very much. I bought it used but the original owner never used the code. Lucky me! :D

Smoov_B
Smoov_B

EA has been trying out so many different ways to handle paying for DLC. I feel like they're finally getting it right. Used game sales is such a bane for publishers and developers. Reward the people that support the companies directly. If you're buying used, you're not doing anything to support the industry. This is a great way for game makers to get a little back and still not alienate the faithful.

Titch-X
Titch-X

@lowkey254 Hey it's free win win.

lowkey254
lowkey254

dlc already huh? I'm going to hate games even more in the near future.

northArrow
northArrow

ME2 is my favorite game of the current generation, and now it's getting better. Thank you Bioware

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

Hovertank is one of my favorite words in video games. Anyone else play battletanx GB and use the hovertank.

ffviiifreak
ffviiifreak

ME2 for GOTY definitely too bad I pretty sure they will be dbags about it and name Mario Galaxy 2 GOTY as a middle finger to all hardcore gamers

Flipyap28
Flipyap28

ME2 for GOTY, or at least Bioware (they have DOA aswell) for developer of the year. DLC is a blast and well worth the ummm...wait....what did I pay for it again. Oh, and for peolpe annoyed that they dont have the ceberus network, its $15 for access to it, thats $15 for an extra squad member, another mission, two new weapons, a new piece of armor, and a crashed normandy to explore...oh, and this DLC which is about to be released.

Skargamer
Skargamer

@Shika_Stoner sorry dude!!! i didnt realize you were talking about hawx! you were talkin about me2 so muxh hawx just slippewd my head when i finished reading it!!! :P anyways hawx was a pretty short game. fun but shortlived.

Shika_Stoner
Shika_Stoner

@ Skargamer I was talking about Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X being little more than 4 hours long. >_> So far all 3 of my ME2 runs took me at least 30 hours...

megamega777
megamega777

@Skargamer Good points, but you also forgot the turning up the difficulty is actually "fun" (Insanity makes the COD series Veteran difficulty look like cake walks) look this time around! In ME1, it made no sense to do so because for the most part (by the time your lvl60) your a f***ing tank!!!! You wouldn't believe the amount of times I got pissed at Harbinger... When I take down a Collector Drone to "I-poke-it-in-the-eye-and-it-dies" health and then the words you hate to hear "ASSUMING CONTROL!!!" Many F-words were said during my insanity run...

boricuasnake04
boricuasnake04

I have to admit Mass Effect 2 has been incredible and even better than the first one in almost every way i dont like the way you waste fuel thats just boring and not really important but everything else was amazing they should increase the places you can land on though come on thats why Blueray disc are way better you can fit so much more information and content on one disc but overall one the best games I love it and cant stop playing repay value is insane

Virtual_Erkan
Virtual_Erkan

I finished the game and I never rode a vehicle

ParisSun
ParisSun

People on this site would find a reaason to whine even if someone handed them a $100.00 bill. It's free for most and it's more Mass Effect. That's great news and good stuff.

Skargamer
Skargamer

@Shika_Stoner well you obviously didn't care about the loyalty missions. Depending on whether you complete it to the mx you'll get at least 36 hours of gameplay. but if you just go through the main storyline and recruit only about 5-7 of ur team members then you're bound to get only 10 hours of gameplay. i dont understand though how you actually completed it in 4 hours. bioware isnt exactly know for making 4 hour games or 4hour main storylines. i tried completing it fast but got about 10 hours of gameplay.

Darth_Starwind
Darth_Starwind

I have to admit that I did miss the Mako and the uncharted planet side quests a bit. While they did get repetitive, those missions did seem to make the galaxy seem bigger and that you were an explorer as well as a soldier. While ME2's side quests were fun, they were all closed into either buildings or box canyons. You really didn't see much other than the people trying to blow your head off. What I would like to see in some fashion in ME3 is a combination of the exploration from ME1 and the kick @ss action from ME2. All that said, both games were fantastic in their own right.

Smeaglebutcrack
Smeaglebutcrack

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

pmo5010
pmo5010

while i was satisfied that the Mako didn't make a return, i am excited to see new vehicle missions (and a new vehicle, of course) coming out for this. I wasn't too thrilled with the day-one content but i'm hopeful that these future DLC packages will be worth the price of purchasing the Cerberus network.

Shika_Stoner
Shika_Stoner

Personally I have over a 100 hours on ME 1 the last time I checked. But that's because I used the same save file for 9 or so runs while completing all of the side missions on each run. Then there were times when I just drove around on the planets doing stunts in the Mako. I really liked that one uncharted planet with the blue star. The dark blue and purple lighting made me thirsty... Was ME2 shorter? Yes. but it also got rid of a lot of the tedium from the first one. And it was in no way an incomplete or short game. H.A.W.X was a short game. Fun but it should be criminal to charge $60 for a game with a 4 hour single player mode. I literally beat it in one sitting.

Crzy1
Crzy1

Very nice. Was disappointed that the Mako made no appearance at all in the game (even if driving around desolate planets wasn't very fun). Being free makes it even better, hats off to EA and Bioware.

Sanguis_Malus
Sanguis_Malus

Can't wait. ME 2 really impressed me, its an amazing game in many aspects. Free dlc is fantastic.

frazzle00
frazzle00

Anything that prolongs my ME2 experience is a good thing : ).

slyguy65
slyguy65

This is fan service to the mako lovers....(im a mako lover)

tbailey184
tbailey184

Not a very impressive addition, in my opinion. Not a big fan of driving around mundane planets. Still, additional missions at no cost is always something I'll support.

Un4givingAsault
Un4givingAsault

As much as the mako sucked I still sorta missed it in hte 2nd time around

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

@Gojomez Please, , and got all the DLC for free, AND don't care much about this whole thing. I just said I can understand someone might be upset. @Nosnitsttam I don't know it to be fact, it's just a logical conclusion. EA isn't known for being generous. Also, don't take things so personally. It's not like I was trying to insult anyone or even suggest that the DLC is bad in any way.

LYTEK
LYTEK

agreed w/ neonblueshadow, they should make most add-on missions be postgame. That would extend the (re)play value.