Microsoft is just days away from releasing Halo 4, and as the big day draws closer, the time has come for the publisher to announce its downloadable content plans and Season Pass offerings. $24.99 (2,000 Microsoft Points) will preorder the upcoming expansions at a 15% discount (and snag two bonus in-game helmets), but unlike most major publishers that push Season Pass offerings these days, Microsoft has done the honorable thing by sharing its DLC plans up front before you buy. Game Informer shares what comes with a Pass purchase:
Crimson Map Pack (December release timeframe)
- Maps: Wreckage, Harvest, Shatter
- Description: Witness the chaos of a clash of civilizations in Wreckage, with its blend of claustrophobic spaces and dangerous exposures and venture into the human colony environs of Harvest, and explore a human foray on an alien moon in Shatter.
Majestic Map Pack (February release timeframe)
- Maps: Landfall, Monolith, Skyline
- Description: Landfall’s emphasis is on infantry battles against a glittering ocean on a distant world, while Monolith exposes you to the naked vacuum of space – and the firepower of opposing teams, and Skyline’s distinctly industrial feel provides new challenges in somewhat familiar, but occasionally confined spaces.
Castle Map Pack (April release timeframe)
- Maps: Daybreak, Outcast, Perdition
- Description: Daybreak is set in a military facility against the backdrop of an idyllic mountain range, while Outcast plunges you into the warrens, canyons and arches of an alien edifice, and Perdition takes players into the heart of an urban sprawl, with tactical speed and situational awareness its key features.
As Season Passes have become more popular among publishers, many are selling unannounced DLC in bulk. Sony sold a Season Pass for Uncharted 3 without actually mentioning what one would get for that money. Assassin's Creed III is about to pull the same trick with only one DLC offering announced out of the bundle on sale (and some of that content is multiplayer-specific, but Ubisoft isn't sharing the exact ratio). I like to know what I'm buying before I put down money on it, and while I won't buy Halo 4 or its DLC, I applaud Microsoft for detailing just what is going to release before accepting preorders.