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Gaming's Obsession With "Exclusive Content" Reaches Its Preposterous Extreme

Watch Dogs features eleven editions, twelve content packs, and a partridge in a pear tree.

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Watch Dogs, the forever-in-development, much ballyhooed third-person action game from Ubisoft, finally goes on sale later this month. One reason it may have taken so long to get this thing out the door: The nigh-Homeric catalog of special editions, exclusive content thingamabobs, and various other limited edition enticements that you can see above. This data is all lifted directly from Ubisoft forums.

The quality and depth (or lack thereof) of platform exclusive content is something of a running joke in the game industry, and often scans more as obligatory than creative or exciting. So which is this preposterous matrix, which includes 11 distinct editions of the game, 12 kinds of "additional content", and sundry other units of swag? Gamers will find out on May 27.

Joe Bernstein is a senior technology reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York. Bernstein reports on and writes about the gaming industry and web culture.

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