The word “free” has become synonymous with sneaky hidden charges in recent years and any use of the term in relation to gaming raises an eyebrow or two. However, bonuses and extras are an altogether different proposition and the gaming industry contains some of the most interesting and generous bonuses out there. Whether it’s a bonus stage, a special little something for preordering a certain title or something which will help you put you on the right path to a prosperous gaming career, the gaming landscape is full of little fun extras. To that end, we’ve scoured the internet (and racked our brains) to bring you some of our favourites over the years.
While items such as the Buster Sword in Final Fantasy VII or the Key Blades from Kingdom Hearts 3 can be classed as bonus items, they’re not all that useful. However, a certain Nintendo game released back in 2002 contains a bonus item which certainly makes your life much easier. Super Mario Sunshine throws a wrench in Super Mario’s superior platforming through the introduction of a special water pack (F.L.U.D.D) which you are required to carry around with you at all times. The pack dramatically changes the way you move around and jump but is taken away from you at various stages, making the levels much more challenging. Although the Super Mario franchise is known for bonus levels, the water pack is a welcome item which certainly helps you more than hinders you on your quest.
Online Casino and Slots
The recent emergence of online casino and themed slots such as Mega Moolah has brought their respective bonuses and extras to the fore in the gaming arena. With casino promotions at Aspers online – for example, no deposit bonuses and extra daily spins – online casinos such as this continue to provide some of the most complete gaming experiences on the internet. Additionally, themed slot games relating to TV shows such as the ever popular Game of Thrones or Doctor Who have various bonus levels that give the player chance to collect special symbols and build up their progressive jackpots. When it comes to extras and bonuses, the gamification of online casino has certainly worked in the industry’s favour.
Preorder Oddities and Bonuses
As a gamer, it doesn’t get much better than preordering an eagerly awaited title. What’s more, there’s often an incentive to do this in the form of a bonus item or in-game extra. Over the years, we have seen many weird and wonderful examples of this: Resident Evil 5 provided gamers with a pretty interesting (but useless) snow globe and Nintendo baffled fans with a Banana Wiimote case with Donkey Kong Country Returns. However, the best and most useful preorder bonus (in our opinion) is the RC tank with Gears of War 2. OK, the tank won’t help you in any way, shape or form with regards to the game, but it certainly improved our street cred back in the day.
Are Bonuses a Thing of the Past?
With modern-day games now more focused on their story and character development, the days of bonus levels, in-game Easter eggs and extra items seem to be numbered. However, as with most things in the gaming industry, fads come and go faster than you can say demo discs and there’s a good chance that we won’t have to wait long until they come back around.