It feels like only yesterday that we reported on Sega's apparent plans to 'aggressively monetise' its future games (when in fact it was two days ago). It seems we didn't have to wait long for this plan to kick into action, as yesterday Sega put out a perplexing DLC chart for the upcoming Sonic Origins collection—which contains remastered versions of Sonic The Hedgehog 1,2, 3 & Knuckles and Sonic CD.
There was quite a bit of backlash to the chart, which showed various content locked off bizarre stuff like menu animations, letterbox background and most egregiously "hard missions" behind paid DLC. That's still the case, but at least now the chart is clearer and shows that the Start Dash Pack comes bundled as free DLC with preorders of the game.
That Start Dash Pack isn't exactly great, as it's making you preorder the game to get content that really seems like it should be accessible from the start. The Start Dash Pack contains letterbox background, Mirror Mode, and 100 Bonus Coins. So does that mean that those who don't preorder won't ever get to play the game in Mirror Mode, or (more likely) that it will be unlockable using the in-game currency or as a paid DLC down the line?
Even if you preorder the Standard Edition, you still don't get access to the 'Hard Missions.' For those you'll need the Premium Fun Pack, which comes with other 'fun' stuff like "character animations in the main menu" and (joy of joys) "camera controls over the main menu islands."
It's worth stressing the developer Headcannon, who made the excellent Sonic Mania and have helped develop this collection, weren't involved in the DLC mess. They tweeted yesterday: "Of the remade Sonic the Hedgehog games, Headcannon previously assisted in preproduction of SCD, co-developed S1 and S2, and now, developed a similarly enhanced S3&K! Sonic Origins and its integration and presentation of these games is separately created and curated by Sega."