First the good news: the GTA IV downloadable content expansion pack 'The Lost and Damned' has broken the world record for downloaded content, assuming such a record exists. Microsoft is not putting any numbers to the claim, but it is shouting from the roof tops that the GTA IV DLC from "Rockstar Games eclipsed first-day revenue for all previous downloadable content on Xbox LIVE." It is being a little less vocal about the bad news: for many players the expansion pack simply stinks. Actually, it sucks elephants through a straw. Backwards.

I should know, because I am one such player. Well, to be fair I am not one such player because playing is pretty much the last thing I can do when it comes to The Lost and Damned. At least not for long.

Yes, along with many others who are popping up all over gaming forums across the Internet, I am suffering from a severe case of the Lost and Frozen. The game just packs up and freezes at random points during game play, although Sod's Law dictates that most often it will be mid-mission or worse, just as you are about to complete a mission. At least I have got further into the life of a rebel biker boy than some. There are reports of folks who have been unable to complete even the first mission, whereas I have managed to get through two or three eventually. But the fun is kind of removed when you are doing well in a mission only to be unable to complete it because of a buggy game, or sloppy coding, or whatever it is that is causing this DLC to be such a crock.

Now those of you who are not suffering from a Rockstar Cold Shoulder might say it is down to the original game disk, or the console. However, my GTA IV disk is OK and the original game plays perfectly well without freezing at all. What's more, despite my on the record complaining about the Xbox 360 hardware being a huge pile of pants with the whole red rings of death experiences i have suffered, I have been trying to play The Lost and Damned on a brand new console which has shown no such problems.

If I were alone in the freezing I might blame the hard drive, I might blame fragmented code, I might blame goblins for that matter. But I am not alone, and like other Xbox fans I am getting angry. And I blame Rockstar Games.

So, here come three important questions. One is aimed at you, dear reader, the others at Rockstar and Microsoft:

  1. Dear Reader, have you been getting frozen out of The Lost and Damned?
  2. Dear Rockstar, when will you be releasing a patch or even admitting that there is a problem for that matter?
  3. Dear Microsoft, when will you be giving me my money back? Your 'no refunds on this item' policy stinks if the item is not of merchandisable quality, and this most certainly is not.
About the Author

A freelance technology journalist for 30 years, I have been a Contributing Editor at PC Pro (one of the best selling computer magazines in the UK) for most of them. As well as currently contributing to, The Times and Sunday Times via Raconteur Special Reports, SC Magazine UK, Digital Health, IT Pro and Infosecurity Magazine, I am also something of a prolific author. My last book, Being Virtual: Who You Really are Online, which was published in 2008 as part of the Science Museum TechKnow Series by John Wiley & Sons. I am also the only three times winner (2006, 2008, 2010) of the BT Information Security Journalist of the Year title, and was humbled to be presented with the ‘Enigma Award’ for a ‘lifetime contribution to information security journalism’ in 2011 despite my life being far from over...

Hell yes! Ugh and they have been ignoring my emails now for A WEEK!

Talk about bad attitude, instead of acknowledging the problem and try to fix it. FFS!