'Tis the season for new big-ticket video games, and increasingly, now is also the season for new experiments in DLC and add-on purchases for retail titles. We don't normally spotlight add-on packs if they're just cosmetic, but today's reveal of a new "loot box" for October's Gears of War 4 got Ars' attention—and not necessarily in a good way.
Today's new Gears box is a cross promotion with hip-hop duo Run the Jewels, who had already released a music video connected to the game in September. Microsoft is charging a whopping $20 for the add-on, which includes the following: two skin unlocks (featuring RTJ members Killer Mike and El-P, with unique spoken dialogue), a single teal-blue skin for every weapon in the game, two emblem designs that can be applied to player profiles (only seen between matches), and two one-time XP "bounties" that can be claimed when playing an online versus match as either RTJ member.
As of right now, none of the contents in this loot box can be unlocked using the in-game currency that is doled out in online modes such as versus and "Horde" co-op. The only other cash-only content in Gears 4 is a $50 season pass for downloadable maps.