Friday, October 29, 2010

The New Face of Advertising; YOU

Now I've never been one to play EA's Need for Speed series, so if not for a friend that does this little nasty new development may have slipped by my sights. He was playing the legitimate demo and soon ran across this and sent me a pic, followed by many wtfs, and the like.

Seriously EA? Are you god damn serious? So to even get to play all of what should be used to "entice me to like the game" I have have to advertise it like a virus for you? Whelp I know what game I'll never buy, and such applies to any other games that do this in the future. This is seriously a new low, but to be quite honest I am not all that surprised.

After all game companies have spent years creating a private army that would defend them to the death in the use of Achievements/Trophies/New Hats. This just seems to me more as a test/cash on that investment. I mean if they can get some stupid joe average to advertise for them, why wouldn't they? All I know is that this will end up driving the rift in the gaming culture even wider, but then, is that so bad? Let the fire and brimstone come, maybe then we can see a reset to the industry that is so desperately needed.

Dragon Age II: 45% On Disc Edition

Bit late, but figured I had to take a shot at this because Bioware and EA are currently the shining posterboy example for how to take what is potentially a really good game, and destroy it through scam locking EGGZKLUSIFFS and disc locked/withheld content.

The upcoming Bioware Signature Edition of DA2 will be available if you preorder the full game (read as: 40% of what the game should be). With it comes a bunch of preorder disc locked content much like in the first game. At least this time round, they're not pulling what they did with the first game, where in order to get ALL of the disc locked promo content you would have had to buy the game 7 times. Anyone with a brain obviously pirated all of that shit shortly after the game's release so it's a total non-issue. But... that hasn't stopped them from once again trying to sell a 'limited' or 'collectors' or 'special' edition that gives you nothing but disc locked content.

This is their advertising poster image below:

Sounds quite nice doesn't it? Nice flashy eye catching artwork. Now look closely at what you really get. $20 of additional content! Wow... REALLY?! So, why are people having to pay $20 to unlock what's already on the disc? Why is this being restricted to those who preorder only? Ah yes, of course... because if they didn't offer any incentive at all, then nobody would buy... especially after how many people were rightfully pissed off when they announced the No Withheld Content aka Ultimate Edition of Dragon Age 1, after many ultimately shelled out the extra money for the withheld and scam locked content. Obviously, the Ultimate Edition was the version that should have come out day one, for $60. Not a year later for the price of a new game AFTER the scam locking of content has largely succeeded and pissed off the playerbase.

Either way, this is what they're doing with Dragon Age 2. For the sake of honesty, I felt it was necessary to modify their advertising image very slightly below:

I believe it is more accurate in explaining to the prospective morons buyers who are considering buying this title on day one. Of course, I cannot recommend buying this at all, especially on day one. Wait a year, for the proverbial No Withheld Content Edition to come out instead. If you absolutely must play this on day one, rent or pirate it instead. 

After all, incomplete/beta versions of games aren't things that shouldn't be paid for, why should things change now? :)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Game Of The Year

Not talking about a specific game per se, but more a general rant this time on the term. What I want to know is when in the hell did the term get so bastardized and corrupted into what it is today? Some examples:

I could go on, really. I believe I've made it clear. What I really want to know is, where do they get off calling their own products 'Game of the Year'? I understand that gaming magazines tend to give that 'accolade' in their reviews based on how much the publishers paid in bribes, but then to have the nerve to put it on your game as if you were implying your game is actually WORTHY of that title?...

All of the publishers guilty of doing this (you know who you are!). Pull your heads out of your asses and smell something other than your own shit for a change. Your games may be good, but they're not THAT good. You don't have the right OR the game worthy of the accolade 'Game of the Year'. In fact, nothing from this entire generation of Disc Locked/Withheld/Scam Content is worthy of that title. 'Triple A' gaming has become everything BUT.

Remember back when games had:

  1. Well developed characters
  2. Engaging storylines
  3. Great, soulful music and impactful sound effects
  4. Exemplary, engaging and innovative gameplay
  5. Immense replay value?
No? Yeah, not surprised. Those of you who are too young, or have just 'grown' into gaming this generation have no idea what we have lost in this day and age of GRAPHICS > ALL. Anyone played the new Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II lately? Beautiful, amazingly detailed and beautiful graphics. Sound isn't too bad either.

So, how long is the game itself, how much gameplay and replay value is there?

What's that? Don't go there? Yeah, thought not.

Games today have no business even being near the 'Game of the Year' tag. Unless a game is of the quality of a masterpiece from a decade ago such as Chrono Trigger (a true, undisputable Game of the Year), don't devalue the accolade any further. Let 'gaming awards' like that retain at least a BIT of value.

If you publishers are in need of some tags to use, below are some suggestions:

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Review - Dead Rising 2

"Ex motocross racer Chuck Greene has been framed for an outbreak he didn't start here in Las Vegas Fortune City and has 72 hours to clear his name before military clean up crew arrives. What would you do with 72hrs
in hell?"

As someone that has played both Dead Rising entries this review is going to reflect that.

Graphics: 15%

Everything we've come to expect really of this generation in graphics. Game looks great and crisp, but it does however lose some points because of one thing. Very obvious frame drops in certain situations, one of the most obvious being using any weapon with particle effects (like say the flame sword combo weapon) on the day with gas leaking everywhere. Should be noted this was the ps3 version and your results may very depending on the one you play, I just cannot be fucked to play it on 3 systems.

Sound: 15%

No inherent problems with the sound you'd notice, everything sounds good on both music and Sound effect level, and I didn't run into any deformed sounds/hang up noise in my time playing. As well the voice acting is fine and fits the game for most instances. I do have one gripe however. A lot of the sound is recycled from Dead Rising 1, which isn't a HUGE issue since well its from the same game series, it still sorta takes away from the game a bit.

Controls and Gameplay: 20%

Two words: Fucking. Fun. Killing zombies is very easy and fluid, if you struggle at this game really.... quit video games... na I am kidding, but really if you struggle just think about what you are fighting a bit harder/come more prepared, game is really not that hard. Chuck is very user friendly.

DR2 introduces the combo system in which Chuck, who acts like Macgyver with his duct tape. can combine a variety of items to make new weapons to use on psychopaths or the zombie hoarde. Some of these combinations are complete lulz and bullshit (example: gems + flashlight = light saber) which only adds to the over the top antics of the game.

If just endlessly slaying zombies isn't your goal in life, there is a lengthy main story you can pursue and survivors you can rescue. There are also psychopaths, former Fortune City residents that couldn't handle the zombie outbreak and went insane, to fight.

Length and Replayability: 10%

The main game is long, and supports co-op. If you and a friend enjoy slaying the zombie horde, this will occupy you for some time, even better it supports drop in/drop out co-op, a really good decision on capcom's part in my opinion, allowing people to come and go as they please/have the time to play. It does however lose points on a couple of, what I think, were poor decisions.

No Infinite/survival mode: DR1 had a mode that after you cleared the main story, you could play endlessly with no objectives before you other than to survive. this would have been PERFECT for a co-op concept in DR2. but alas through some sort of near sighted choice this is not available in DR2... hope who ever made that choice got fired.

TIR Online: Seriously? WHAT WERE THEY THINKING!? I mean its a fun little set of minigames that I don't mind playing time to time... then they go and make TIR the main source of gathering money for the main game, there are other methods yes, but they are just as boring as TIR and they even hide unlockables in TIR...
if their was any instance of "trying to force people to Multiplayer" this would be a good example.

What I paid: 20%

I personally got the PS3 version on a special deal for $30, so I made out well. But to those that cannot do that, get the PC version for $40. in all its not above the "costs way too much" threshold of $50-60

Base Score: 80% of 100%

Now here is the fun part. DR is a Capcom series, and Capcom has been proving to be quite the assholes to their "fans" as of late. DR2 is not free from this corruption.

Case Zero, A special "prequal" to DR2, explains the events leading up to what makes Chuck Greene the way he is. This is currently exclusive to 360 owners. And regardless if it ever comes to us later....


Christ... its like they WANT people to hate them. Cause sorry if their plot is to make you buy on one system over the other from this "EGGZCLUSIV" product, it doesn't work for all of us. The ones that are not sheep just see you as douche bags and more and more justified to steal whatever you held from them. Case West is comming soon and I expect more dickery with that one.

Published by major publisher (-5%)
Contains DLC (Disc Locked Content) (-20%)
Contains 'day one' DLC (-5%)
Contains Withheld content (-10%)

Adjusted score: 40% of 100%

Final words: Yikes quite a painful adjustment there wasn't it Capcom? Maybe you need to do some things differently?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

ITT: Brainwashed Corporate Sheep

In this thread, we shit on Dragon Age II's preorder DLC, and have yours truly, versus a typical brainwashed corporate sheep who enjoys the feel of Kotick's dick up his ass so much he cannot see reason. It was somewhat civil, until he decided to use an image reply with me.

Big mistake.

I believe my point in the entire argument is clear without having to restate it. Click on the image to view the full size.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

In Depth on DLC

Being our blog's main namesake and hate I figured it would not hurt to summerize why its the greatest evil in gaming to date.

1. Content that is Withheld: Yep I can already hear the naysayers on this one. "YOU DON'T KNOW IT WAS WITHHELD, STFU." and you don't know that it wasn't, and going simply by presentation it doesn't look good in their favor that might not have been withheld.
Some examples:

  • Assassins Creed 2 PC: The Game Data itself at launch had a folder Named "dlc" which contained the tie in data for Sequence 12 and 13 along with the other small dlcs. AT LAUNCH it had this. Meaning it could have came to us at launch but was chosen to be cut out, continuing on this.
  • Assassins Creed 2: Campaign with Obviously missing levels and makes a very large point to tell you they are missing. Sequence 12 and 13 are "damaged" in the story, and once you pay your "I want a complete game" tax they are repaired. There are other games but this was the one the most blatant showings of cut content to make more money.
  • Dead Rising 1 and Resident Evil 5: Wait that DLC is only 100kb to dl? wow that's some good coding for a new outfit or game play mode to only take up 100k of space. BUZZ WRONG! what you are downloading there is essentially a unlocking key to gain access to data ALREADY ON THE DISK. Companies have learned from this mistake and keep the content off the disk now to try and keep the "illusion" it is new.
  • Dragon Age: "Hi I am a Npc that on a game straight from LAUNCH! follow you around anytime you are in town and try to sell you a special quest that wasn't cut from the game to make more money I swear!" This was a new low Bioware, not only do you cut content from a game to make it less than whole, then you put in a character that FOLLOWS YOU AROUND in town to constantly rub it in that you as a customer got less for your money again.
2. "Its not an expansion! its DLC!" Which is why we get times less for our $20-40 than we used to. Does anyone remember expansion packs? They costed anywhere from $20-40 and got you sometimes as much as the original game in new content to enjoy, now days? That $20 will get you a map pack, or 4 color/costume changes for your character! WHAT A BARGIN! I do find it very hilarious when they try to sell me a fucking palette swap acting like it was "alot of work".

3. Separation of the player base.

"sorry I can't play with you, don't got the new map pack."
"we can still play older maps."
"no, we can't"
"Just owning that pack puts you in a new classification as far as the server is concerned, we cannot play"

Thankfully this one I am seeing alot less, we are slowly winning the battle on this front, mostly due to the fact that the PR damage is disastrous. People couldn't play togather at all if one had the DLC and others didn't. This is getting resolved slowly by "compatibility packs" or "only one person now needs the DLC" the fact of the matter is it never should have happened and they'd love for us to forget that they tried to fuck us over, so that we happily keep lapping up the shit they put in a doggy dish.

Remember folks There are people out there that would like to make you pay ontop of your original payment to see the ending to a game. That IS their plan, and DLC is a stepping stone on that plan. In all you must

(To finish this article please download our add-on pack here. Its only $5 and your contribution will be well appreciated.)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Going Way Too Far Again

Once again Blizzard show and prove that they are pioneers. Pioneers in going too far over the goddamn line. The first time was with their Real ID enforcing attempt on the forums. Yeah, we know how that panned out after one of their community staff got dox'd so hard within 15 minutes he probably had to change his name and move house. You'd think they'd have learnt their lesson right? Hah.

Here they go now, with the next episode of 'Going Way Too Far Over The Line'. Now they're banning cheaters from playing StarCraft II. That would be all fine and good, and really, that's fine... except for one rather small tidbit.

They're banning people for cheating in SINGLEPLAYER.

Yeah, you know, the mode that really doesn't affect anyone except the person playing? The mode that is, since time immemorial, the sovereign right of the paying customer to wreck their own game experience for themselves if they so choose?

Yeah, they're banning people from that.


Ok, supposedly they're doing this because Campaign/singleplayer, while played when logged into, will still accrue achievements that are used to unlock online avatar/profile pictures. Now... Since when do achievements actually carry any tangible value?

Oh wait... Modern day gaming... Achievement whores... Right.

See this is what's wrong, this is EVERYTHING that is wrong with modern gaming today. Whether or not someone chooses to cheat in an OFFLINE, SOLO PLAY mode, should be THEIR right to decide, NOT that of a faceless corporation. Remember back 10 or so years ago, when little devices called Action Replay or Gameshark were prominently prevalent? Do you still see them today? No? Ever wonder why? Because the big corporations saw it fit to hunt and destroy the makers of these devices to stop people from fucking with their games... Even in singleplayer modes. While I completely support the use of the B&hammer on online Multiplayer cheaters... Singleplayer has always been at the sole right and discretion of the gamer in question and NO ONE ELSE

If I choose to 'ruin my gaming experience' as you anti-cheaters so happily are apt to label me by cheating in a single player game/mode... That is MY choice, MY right. I paid for the game, I will choose what I do with the game I PAID FOR. As long as I'm not wrecking it for anyone else, it's my right to do what the hell I want with my game.

Now, in the era of achievement whores and gaymerfagscoar, suddenly, transparent achievements are now supposedly 'worth' something, and this something must be protected, even from dirty singleplayer cheaters. If there was ever a stronger case for the achievement/trophy system needing to be destroyed outright, this is it. It's now gotten to a point where the non-existent value of achievements, are infringing upon our rights as people who PAID for a game to play in in a manner we choose to play it. If that means cheating with a 3rd party program SO FUCKING BE IT, such is our right.

But no, now even that small right has been denied us. We no longer own anything of a game we play. So should we consider ourselves blessed to be able to play games under the watchful eye of our new corporate gaming overlords? Thank you, o mighty Cocktivision and our ruler Bobby Kodick, for this latest $60 offering which only lasts 4 hours and we must pay another $150 for Withheld/Disc Locked Content to get another hour out of it... Blessed we must be indeed!

If this is seriously how gaming is going to go, where we do not even have the right to decide how we choose to play our games even in singleplayer/solo play/offline modes that do not realistically impact on the gaming experience of others. Then seriously, it can all go fuck itself.  Cheating, or not cheating isn't even the point here. The point is simple: Singleplayer was our LAST REMAINING SOVEREIGN RIGHT in a gaming world where our rights are fast being taken away by more and more forced online Big Brother watchdog type systems hell bent on trying to dictate to us HOW, WHERE and WHEN we should play our games.

Now, in the eyes of Blizzard, we don't even have that right.

So what the fuck are we paying for then?! Oh that's right, the EULA... We don't own anything. So for good money paid to the company, we still own nothing, and have no rights and no recourse. Why even bother buying then? Why bother paying when you have no rights in a Stalinesque police state where the overlord is always right? Why bother doing the right thing at all? 

I know for one, if this is how Blizzard's games are going to be from now, with forced lock in online to even play single player modes... Then consider me a lost customer for life, as well as a Blizzard pirate for life. If my money doesn't even buy me the basic right over my single player experience, then fuck doing the right thing. I will quite happily pirate any and all Blizzard product from now on, and I know I am not the only one holding this sentiment after this news.

After all, if you pirate, you still have your basic sovereign rights and control, away from the eyes of our watchful gaming overlords. In this generation of stolen rights, a jailbroken PS3, a jtagged Xbox360 and a PC with not a single piece of paid software is indeed the way to go.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Nobody is safe

As Posted in an earlier article Item mall is the bane to good games.
An Australian acquaintance of mine who is a notorious Valve loyal, particularly Team fortress 2
(no seriously I think the guy even would own a Heavy dakimakura if it were possible).
pointed out this latest update for his game and didn't understand the hate surrounding it.

I told him its not the initial update that is the problem, just some cosmetics? fine, there is no real problem if you REALLY want to have X look by paying some minute money. however of course it did not end there.

I soon learned from a few other people who play the game and frequent the chat room that there were items you could buy that gave STAT BONUSES for real money.


I'm very much happy that I never put much faith in Valve like many others have, I simply watched from the sidelines waiting for them to make their move, and now they have. Will they unleash unholy, hobby killing, evil the likes of Activision has seen? That I doubt, but they most certainly are no longer pure. As one that doesn't play TF2 as well this doesn't directly affect me, but I am also intelligent enough to realize that it COULD effect me someday, in some game down the road.

Those don't seem to get it through their heads, you buy, the precedence is set. Voting with your wallet only works at the very beginning instance, if the tactic succeeds once, it will have to fail 10 times over before it gets undone from being a market norm. This is why nearly every game has withheld content and now many have cash shops and nearly no single player experience.

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Politically Correct "false" movement

This Article today made me quite irritated. For those not in the know, allow me to fill you in.

EA with their Medal of Honor series, which I don't play nor normally have an interest in, decided on their latest installment to controversially allow in their game to let you play as the Taliban as one of the factions for death match. Now in my home country of burning any book that isn't the Bible and fucking apple pies, this did not go over well. Interest groups, and by interest I mean nobody's but their own, decided that was "improper" and moved to silence that.

EA stuck to their guns for a while and refused to change, which I respected them for, but in the end likely out fear the game wouldn't sell cause of all the negative PR these idiots were generating, gave in and changed them from "Taliban" to "Opposing Force".

Yep. you heard me right. All that was changed was the name.

They are still terrorists, they still look as stereotype as you can get, but they aren't "Taliban" so everything is sunshine and roses for these people I've dubbed "The people with too much time on their hands". These people, since they have no lives or shit to do, feel that in their infinite spare time think they need to tell the other 99.8% of the world what is right and proper. Going to give you a small hint here.

Most "intelligent" people don't want to view the world through tinted windows, especially in something as harmless as a game. Something that fails me completely is how these idiots thought this was going to be harmful in anyway, I mean I hate ALL forms of censorship, but I can understand why people manipulate with it if there is something to gain from it. So what could possibly been gained here? Nothing is what. It is not like the game glorified the terrorists or something, so once again its a pointless censorship and wasted energy that could have have been directed somewhere else my fellow braindead Americans.

But I know none of this is reaching the people that need to hear it, and if it were to, they'd deny or shift blame, cause that is what their kind is best at, being childish and never doing anything good for this world, instead they shit it up for others.

Final word is this. I had no intent on ever playing this game but I still liked that someone was going to try to have something out there that on at least some levels not spoken through a filter.
But cause of the "Paranoid Parents Association" which includes 60 year old bible thumpers, soccer moms who have to release the extra energy from the speed they consumed to keep up with their over active, nosy lives and politicians who love shit like this cause it provides a nice distraction from them passing bills that fuck you out of ever retiring and lining their pockets with your former pension money, we can't even have that.

Thank you again PPA for saving us when we didn't need or want to be saved.