Battlefield 3 is the latest game due to receive a dose of fresh downloadable content on launch day. According to this post by DICE community manager Daniel Matros, the game's Back to Karkand content pack will include four levels that have appeared in previous Battlefield games: Wake Island, Strike at Karkand, Gulf of Oman, and Sharqi Peninsula. Matros says those four maps have been so popular that players have logged over 25,000 years of playtime in their environments.
Offering a retro map pack on the same day that Battlefield 3 becomes available might seem a little odd considering that folks won't have had the opportunity to tire of the game's new content. They won't have to pay for the day-one DLC, though. Those who buy the full game will receive a download code for Back at Karkand free of charge.
This approach is typically used by publishers trying to combat vendors who encourage customers to buy used games and trade in their old titles. The publishers—and, by extension, the developers—don't see a dime from those transactions. Of course, I can't help but see a little irony in EA dangling a content pack filled with what amount to used maps to encourage gamers to buy Battlefield 3 new. It's unclear whether people who buy the game used will be able to purchase the map pack separately for a fee. That seems like it would be a fair compromise to me... at a fair price, that is. Thanks to Joystiq for the tip.