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Team Meat Offering Lots of Free DLC for Super Meat Boy XBLA

It's all about telling The Man "eff you," man.

While it's entirely possible for Team Meat to offer paid downloads for its upcoming 2D platformer Super Meat Boy, it appears as if it won't be doing so. Instead, the indie studio will be giving away free downloadable levels, delivered by the same temporary file storage system that another XBLA game, Monday Night Combat, is famously using to toss out on-the-fly fixes and balance tweaks.

The creative decision is all about not following the rules, according to indie developer Team Meat. In a recent blog post, the studio explains. 

"In a world where it costs $2 to unlock content in a game that you've already purchased, it is nice to have the power to say 'fuck you' to that system and go our own way," the post reads.   
 


== TEASER ==Russ Frushtick at MTV has been credited as the first person to stumble upon the first bit of TMS-delivered content on a debug Xbox unit. The pack of content is called "Teh Internets," and that's also apparently Team Meat's name for the Xbox 360-exclusive content delivery system. 
 
"As we upload content there are no micro-transactions to play new chapters and we can basically do whatever we want with these chapters and it costs you, our adoring fans, nothing. We love you," the post adds.

Team Meat says each TMS-delivered chapter will contain 20 levels and "can be tailored to allow all characters [in the game] to play them, or lock in a specific character allowing us (Team Meat) to create levels that only certain characters can defeat using their special abilities." 
 


The first pack of levels, which is being called "Butcher Boy," will be available on the game's release date this October 20. It'll be an 8-bit romp with "20 retro-themed levels" that capitalizes on mechanics already in the game while expanding on them by introducing new concepts.

Continuing in the post without a filter, Team Meat also dropped some details on what to expect in the future from the TMS service. Here's the list provided in the post:

1. The Butcher Boy, 8-bit themed Meat Boy chapter (uploaded 10.20.2010)
2. The Sewers of Dross, an entire chapter specifically for Gish (Q4 2010)
3. Meat Boy, 8-bit themed Meat Boy chapter based around the flash prototype (Q4 2010)
4. Debug World, uses the editor in different ways to make insane levels (Q1 2011)
5: [Question Mark] (Q1 2011)




Team Meat made it a point in the post to explain why these levels will be Xbox 360-exclusive. As you'd expect, it has everything to do with Microsoft's rules for XBLA developers.

"Originally we wanted level sharing between platforms. We wanted PC users to be able to play their levels on Xbox, and we wanted the Xbox and Wii versions to have an editor, but this simply wasn’t in the cards," the post reads. "Platform holders have extremely strict rules over user-generated content, plus they offer no easy way to do it. In order for us to do something like this we would have to maintain and pay for our own servers."

And while this may be bad news, there is some good on the horizon for PC and Mac owners of Super Meat Boy. Team Meat will eventually package in a level editor with those versions of the game and will use some of the best user-created levels in future Teh Internets content deliveries. How's that for platform parity?    
49 Comments
Posted by BradNicholson

While it's entirely possible for Team Meat to offer paid downloads for its upcoming 2D platformer Super Meat Boy, it appears as if it won't be doing so. Instead, the indie studio will be giving away free downloadable levels, delivered by the same temporary file storage system that another XBLA game, Monday Night Combat, is famously using to toss out on-the-fly fixes and balance tweaks.

The creative decision is all about not following the rules, according to indie developer Team Meat. In a recent blog post, the studio explains. 

"In a world where it costs $2 to unlock content in a game that you've already purchased, it is nice to have the power to say 'fuck you' to that system and go our own way," the post reads.   
 


== TEASER ==Russ Frushtick at MTV has been credited as the first person to stumble upon the first bit of TMS-delivered content on a debug Xbox unit. The pack of content is called "Teh Internets," and that's also apparently Team Meat's name for the Xbox 360-exclusive content delivery system. 
 
"As we upload content there are no micro-transactions to play new chapters and we can basically do whatever we want with these chapters and it costs you, our adoring fans, nothing. We love you," the post adds.

Team Meat says each TMS-delivered chapter will contain 20 levels and "can be tailored to allow all characters [in the game] to play them, or lock in a specific character allowing us (Team Meat) to create levels that only certain characters can defeat using their special abilities." 
 


The first pack of levels, which is being called "Butcher Boy," will be available on the game's release date this October 20. It'll be an 8-bit romp with "20 retro-themed levels" that capitalizes on mechanics already in the game while expanding on them by introducing new concepts.

Continuing in the post without a filter, Team Meat also dropped some details on what to expect in the future from the TMS service. Here's the list provided in the post:

1. The Butcher Boy, 8-bit themed Meat Boy chapter (uploaded 10.20.2010)
2. The Sewers of Dross, an entire chapter specifically for Gish (Q4 2010)
3. Meat Boy, 8-bit themed Meat Boy chapter based around the flash prototype (Q4 2010)
4. Debug World, uses the editor in different ways to make insane levels (Q1 2011)
5: [Question Mark] (Q1 2011)




Team Meat made it a point in the post to explain why these levels will be Xbox 360-exclusive. As you'd expect, it has everything to do with Microsoft's rules for XBLA developers.

"Originally we wanted level sharing between platforms. We wanted PC users to be able to play their levels on Xbox, and we wanted the Xbox and Wii versions to have an editor, but this simply wasn’t in the cards," the post reads. "Platform holders have extremely strict rules over user-generated content, plus they offer no easy way to do it. In order for us to do something like this we would have to maintain and pay for our own servers."

And while this may be bad news, there is some good on the horizon for PC and Mac owners of Super Meat Boy. Team Meat will eventually package in a level editor with those versions of the game and will use some of the best user-created levels in future Teh Internets content deliveries. How's that for platform parity?    
Edited by Synthballs

First? I think. 
 
Been waiting for this game for way too long 

Posted by Tiwi
@Synthballs said:
" vdsf "
classy
Posted by MrKlorox

Probably gonna pass on this game. N+ was enough of a nightmare.

Posted by Synthballs
@tiwi said:
" @Synthballs said:
" vdsf "
classy "
Alls fair in love and quests. Finally got it though.
Posted by Driadon

I've spent the past 20 or-so minutes over on Kotaku trying to tell people that this is done via a text file, like XML and WILL NOT WORK for effing Valve updates. 
 
Either way, stuff like this is awesome.

Posted by roars5000

Hooray!  

Posted by ch13696
@Synthballs said:
" First? I think. "
WTF? Do you guys just literally stay on this site 24/7 just to be able to post first on news stories? The minute a story gets posted, there's already 10 million comments on it.
Posted by Tiwi
@Synthballs said:
" @tiwi said:
" @Synthballs said:
" vdsf "
classy "
Alls fair in love and quests. Finally got it though. "
doesn't make it less classy.
Posted by Sargus

I like free stuff. Props to the SMB team.

Posted by HadesTimes

I just can't wait to play a final build of this bad boy.  Seems like it could be totally badass.

Posted by fwylo
@tiwi said:
" @Synthballs said:
" @tiwi said:
" @Synthballs said:
" vdsf "
classy "
Alls fair in love and quests. Finally got it though. "
doesn't make it less classy. "
He gets his class from his mother. 
 
And let me tell you.  His mother is one classy lady.
Posted by Diamond

The game seems shithot.  Can't wait.

Posted by I_smell

That's a fucking lot of free stuff compared to everyone else's zero free stuff.

Posted by FlipperDesert
@ch13696 said:
" @Synthballs said:
" First? I think. "
WTF? Do you guys just literally stay on this site 24/7 just to be able to post first on news stories? The minute a story gets posted, there's already 10 million comments on it. "
Or, to be more exact, 6.
 
This game looks like it'll punch me in the face in terms of difficulty, but it's really nice to see they're trying to fight against the farce that paid DLC has become and support their fans. I'm interested.
Posted by BraveToaster

Hmmm

Posted by jakob187

Given the amount of controller-throwing that has happened recently with me thanks to that stupid fucking rocket level getting to Angelo on Shank's Hard difficulty, I'm debating on whether this would be a wise purchase for me right off the bat. 
 
At the same time, I know that I NEED to own this game.

Posted by Afroman269
@ch13696: I picture a bunch of people who constantly hit refresh on the site and switch to their phones and do the same when the time comes to consume food.
Posted by DXmagma

god i wish this was on ps3.

Posted by Detrian

It's gonna be great when Microsoft is all "No, fuck YOU" and stops their shitty game levels from going down the tubes.

Posted by LordCmdrStryker

I played the free version of SMB enough to beat like the first 50 levels, and it was great.  Definitely gonna buy this.

Posted by WilliamRLBaker
@jakob187 said:
" Given the amount of controller-throwing that has happened recently with me thanks to that stupid fucking rocket level getting to Angelo on Shank's Hard difficulty, I'm debating on whether this would be a wise purchase for me right off the bat.  At the same time, I know that I NEED to own this game. "
The challenge is all apart of the experience man, you need to get it! feel our pain!!! one of us! one of us!
Posted by FourWude

They showed the finger to Microsoft's demand to charge for any and all DLC content.
 
This is what I truly call sticking it to the man. Keep it Indie. Keep it real. Keep the love.
 
Peace out.

Posted by Hamst3r

Awesome - I want this RIGHT NOW.

Posted by Infininja
@Detrian said:

" It's gonna be great when Microsoft is all "No, fuck YOU" and stops their shitty game levels from going down the tubes. "

  http://supermeatboy.com/38/Teh_Internets_/
 
 Q: Has Microsoft expressed an opinion on you apparently sidestepping their rules/regulations on how to introduce new content?

A: We were worried about this but, no. we slipped through a loop hole of awesome. In the end they actually welcomed it because they want developers to do anything and everything with their service that makes them stand out. No one has ever done anything like this in the history of XBLA as far as we (and our people at MS) know and it’s seriously the most awesome use of it ever.    
Posted by afrofools
@WilliamRLBaker: The instant restart after death, and the game's design makes this nowhere near as annoying as just about all the disc-based games, while offering a welcome epic amount of difficulty. Games tend to punish the player for losing, especially RDR, I fucking hate that game. Most games made nowadays have poorly placed checkpoint systems, epic glitches, and unnecessary load times; however I think it is like riding a bike up a hill, once you finish struggling to get to the top you go downhill (in a good way). Back to my frustrations with modern games, they offer no challenge, however, there is a high chance that you will die from some absurd BS reason that is inconsistent with the actual challenge and get punished severely for it.
Posted by Synthballs
@ch13696 said:
" @Synthballs said:
" First? I think. "
WTF? Do you guys just literally stay on this site 24/7 just to be able to post first on news stories? The minute a story gets posted, there's already 10 million comments on it. "
No, I saw this at like, 8am getting ready to go out...
Posted by l3illyl3ob
@Driadon said:
" I've spent the past 20 or-so minutes over on Kotaku trying to tell people that this is done via a text file, like XML and WILL NOT WORK for effing Valve updates.  Either way, stuff like this is awesome. "
Steam can download text files too.  It can download anything, in unlimited quantities, at no cost to the developer or user!
Posted by Driadon
@l3illyl3ob said:
" @Driadon said:
" I've spent the past 20 or-so minutes over on Kotaku trying to tell people that this is done via a text file, like XML and WILL NOT WORK for effing Valve updates.  Either way, stuff like this is awesome. "
Steam can download text files too.  It can download anything, in unlimited quantities, at no cost to the developer or user! "
The argument was for console Valve games. People still up-in-arms about the lack of support for TF2 and whatnot.
Posted by Quak0r

Wait........ free DLC on the microsoft console. Interesting....

Posted by Captainlunchbox

YUSS!

Posted by UnsolvedParadox

What a name, Team Meat!

Posted by WinterSnowblind

I'm definitely buying into their DLC philosphy.  With every other company charging outrageous prices for marginal additions and screwing us over with pre-order bonuses and bad collectors editions, this is a really great thing for these guys to do.
 
I didn't even know what this game was before hand, but I'll definitely be buying it because of this alone.

Posted by Ronald
@Driadon said:
" @l3illyl3ob said:
" @Driadon said:
" I've spent the past 20 or-so minutes over on Kotaku trying to tell people that this is done via a text file, like XML and WILL NOT WORK for effing Valve updates.  Either way, stuff like this is awesome. "
Steam can download text files too.  It can download anything, in unlimited quantities, at no cost to the developer or user! "
The argument was for console Valve games. People still up-in-arms about the lack of support for TF2 and whatnot. "
Skipping TF2, I wonder if MS won't allow something similar to this for Portal 2 if Valve can find a way to put it into the game. Especially with Steamworks on the PS3 version allowing updates whenever Valve chooses.
Posted by MeuLeu

Why not ...

Posted by Lorazepam

I have great expectations for this game.

Posted by BigStupidFace

I will buy this game because they release extra stuff for free. It's why I bought the latest Burnout game (after reading a Kotaku post about from DLC). I want to support the companies that aren't out there to fuck every last penny they can out of you.

Posted by Driadon
@Ronald said:
" @Driadon said:
" @l3illyl3ob said:
" @Driadon said:
" I've spent the past 20 or-so minutes over on Kotaku trying to tell people that this is done via a text file, like XML and WILL NOT WORK for effing Valve updates.  Either way, stuff like this is awesome. "
Steam can download text files too.  It can download anything, in unlimited quantities, at no cost to the developer or user! "
The argument was for console Valve games. People still up-in-arms about the lack of support for TF2 and whatnot. "
Skipping TF2, I wonder if MS won't allow something similar to this for Portal 2 if Valve can find a way to put it into the game. Especially with Steamworks on the PS3 version allowing updates whenever Valve chooses. "
Good effing luck. Unless they've recoded the Source Engine to generate levels, much less assets, procedurally I don't think it will be possible. 
Posted by akelatal

Aren't we all really just meat, anyway? Well, except for you cyborgs.

Posted by Scribbly

Loved the Meat Boy online game a while back, but the oldschool difficulty made me ragequit a LOT, and i can see the XBLA version being a massive kick in the teeth for some people in terms of difficulty.

Posted by quicksand31

the backgrounds remind me of pixeljunk eden

Posted by SEBattleship

I wish more developers took to this kind of attitude when it comes to their fans. I feel completely patronized whenever a developer decides to charge me for content already on the disc.

Online
Posted by R4ZOR

I Will Die, But I Dont CAAARE!! :D and im gonna die if i dont get this game soon! im really exited about the level editor as well. In a resent interview i heard they are gonna add user made level to this free dlc! :D sounds awesome
Posted by StaticVoidMain

I really admire they're generosity with the free DLC... but the attitude seems engineered by PR. 
 
It really sounds to me like some where there was a meating (geddit ;) ) where some one put forward this DLC as an update idea and PR went "Hell yeah! then you're gonna tweet some fight-the-power shit with a give-em-hell attitude and it's gonna sound sooooooo fucking indie that kids will be putting posters of you up in their bedroom like your a frikken rockstar!" .. before adding "Just let me run this past Microsoft, don't want to them to pull our game" 
 
I could be wrong (and I hope I am), but it sounds a bit suss to me.

Posted by TheMartino

I already couldn't wait for SMB. This sweetens the deal that mch more. With real sugar. None of this cancerous artificial crap.

Online
Posted by masterlink64

is it just me or does MeatBoy reminds me of Meat Wad from Aqua Teen?

Posted by idlehands

Free DLCs are awesome.  If only this is for PSN :(

Posted by funnyjk

I can not wait for this game

Posted by buft

great use of the system and good on team meat