Gamer Limit writes: "Veteran gamers will remember a time in the distant past when there was no such thing as downloadable content. There were a few exceptions to the rule of course, with games like Total Annihilation supporting the ability to add extra playable units which were freely available for download from the developer's website. Bearing in mind this was the year 1997, and internet-enabled consoles were probably a fanciful idea in some developer's mind.
As PC gaming, and gaming in general became more mainstream, the concept of value-add slowly started to take root in the minds of games developers. Games like Unreal Tournament, released in 1998, were supported post-release by the developers, Epic Games, with downloadable content in the form of new maps and mutators. This free post-sales support business model proved quite successful for Epic, as they went on to create many more successful titles in the Unreal series, each receiving the same after-sales support treatment, resulting in sales enjoying increased longevity."