Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Console Post of the Week: Get On With It

I saw this linked over at Penny Arcade today: Interview: Dead Space 3 producer on micro-transactions and keeping the horror alive.

In case you don't know, Dead Space 3,  a $60 game, includes IAP (in-app purchases). Here's game producer John Calhoun with a stirring defense of this model:
There's a lot of players out there, especially players coming from mobile games, who are accustomed to micro-transactions. They're like "I need this now, I want this now". They need instant gratification. So we included that option in order to attract those players, so that if they're 5000 Tungsten short of this upgrade, they can have it.

I only have one question: how high do you have to be to believe this bullshit?

Yes, I totally understand how "a lot of players" who are used to free games coming with IAP are going to be thirsting for IAP in a $60 game. "I don't care if I paid $60 for this game, I've got to buy some F-ing Tungsten, and I mean RIGHT NOW."

How do people say things like Calhoun said with a straight face? You know what I'd love? A gaming industry where producers didn't treat us like morons. That would be refreshing. Believe me, Mr. Calhoun, you have "kept the horror alive." Indeed.

Also, there's this little jewel: The next Xbox: Always online, no second-hand games, 50GB Blu-ray discs and new Kinect. Here's a delightful excerpt:
Sources with first-hand experience of Microsoft’s next generation console have told us that although the next Xbox will be absolutely committed to online functionality, games will still be made available to purchase in physical form. Next Xbox games will be manufactured on 50GB-capacity Blu-ray discs, Microsoft having conceded defeat to Sony following its ill-fated backing of the HD-DVD format. It is believed that games purchased on disc will ship with activation codes, and will have no value beyond the initial user.

You know what? Bring it on. As a consumer, I am so damn tired of hearing the game industry blame everything but themselves for their failures. Okay, let's go. Let the PS4 and the 720 both ship with features that kill used games entirely.

Then, when this next generation fails miserably (and it will, if they do this), maybe these assholes can stop blaming us.

You know what we're going to get in the next generation? Even fewer games from the major studios, because there will be zero market for most games if they can't be resold. There will be a few exceptions--Madden (God help us) and COD and GTA--but there is going to be a real dearth of product.

Game sales, except for a very few franchises, are going to plummet. Console sales, too. But if the games can't be resold, and they can't be pirated, then it can't be our fault this time, right?

This is like the dinosaurs, possessing advanced technology, calling for their own meteor strike.

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