Editorial: Villains of the week

Babby games are just like Mario

You hadn’t planned on buying project babby? Perhaps you would care to rethink your sensible lack of purchase intent because babby is just like Super Mario Bros., or so says Microsoft’s Kudo Tsunoda.

If you think about a game like Mario Bros., would you say Mario Bros. is a core or casual game? That’s exactly what we’re doing with the Kinect products, … … But if you look at River Rush, from Kinect Adventures, that in a lot of ways is like a platformer game. It’s all the same things you see in platformer games. The way you summed up how you would feel about Mario Bros. is exactly the way we look at the Kinect games.

Just like Mario, but a little bit gay

Yes, just  like Super Mario Bros. … only it is not a platformer, is not made by Nintendo, does not look stylish or in any way appealing and contains nothing resembling a precise or responsive control scheme (a precondition for core gaming, where games are won and lost on skill rather than blind luck or repetition). It is official, they have lost it, this is no mere cynical imitation like the Move, Microsoft actually believe that they are Nintendo, and not just Nintendo but Nintendo circa 2008! Some may lament the incontinent, shambolic mess of an organization that lurched its way onto centre-stage at Microsoft’s 2010 E3 Press Event, I on the other hand am looking to getting my schadenfreude on. I’m pretty sure Nintendo are better at being Nintendo than are Microsoft, and they certainly look to have the casual market stitched up, though it looks as if Microsoft’s core gaming demographic is going begging …

but all is not lost, after all Kinect is just like Mario! But don’t take my word for it.

If I came to you today and I was like, hey, we’re going unveil this new game: it’s a plumber, and you’re going to be going through pipes, and you’re going to be jumping on turtles, you’d be asking the exact same questions that you’re asking about the Kinect experiences.

Unnamed EVIL foreign mega-publisher kills tax breaks for British developers

It took a concerted two years for a loose conglomeration of UK developers to lobby the Brown Labour government for tax concessions intended to promote growth in the British game industry, but it  only took the lobbying of one foreign publisher to take it all away from them.

Insiders tell us that the publisher spoke to well-placed parliament allies to dissuade any legislative measures. This week the Lib-Con coalition cancelled all plans in place for game tax breaks – dashing the hopes of the UK sector which, after a two-year fight, eventually convinced the last Labour government to introduce the measures. Yet in a bitter twist, the Labour government was ousted in the May 2010 general election before the tax break plans were enacted.

And what rationale could possibly have compelled this mean spirited turd of a publisher to so wound the British gaming industry? Apparently it would have given the UK industry an unfair advantage over other nations, seeing as Britain is already so dominant in the world of gaming …

XXXXXXXXX Corp CEO Nobby Bodick

Even with tax concessions in the offing, the UK is far from the cheapest place on earth to develop games, especially when taking into account the development sweatshops of China, making this claim absurd. One can only assume this lobbying was a predatory move designed to keep UK developers financially weak, and thus malleable in their negotiations or acquirable if the occasion should present itself.

The Cameron-Clegg government have of course been looking to make austerity cuts wherever possible since taking office, so little persuading was likely involved, nevertheless any publisher who would lobby against a tax break for developers is clearly foreign to the concept of decency, and is no friend of gaming.

Massive tool of the week:

Peter Moore

At least this villain is an honest one, calling a spade a spade. Many at EA have been attempting to dress up their disgusting pay to play consumer gouging as a noble value adding feature, not Peter Moore however who is content to acknowledge the punitive aspect to EA’s assault on the resale value of our legitimately purchased game libraries with a big shit eating grin.

recognise the business model implications of new versus used … Whilst I’m not sure they’re angry, they absolutely look at what’s going on in the marketplace and understand totally what it is we’re doing. One thing I have to do, and it’s my job, and my development team’s job, and my marketing team’s job, is make you not want to trade the game in

I am sure most people understand perfectly what EA are trying to do with their used software gimping financial strategy, forcing some to make overpriced new game purchases, while gouging the rest with a $10 online fee, a lucrative punishment of our purchasing habits. To Moore EA’s challenge is “conditioning you to punch a code in, to get you going, get some digital content, and conditioning you to look at digital content as a value-add to the game experience itself”.

Do we have to pay for these now?!!

Consider for a moment how something might be “value adding” while actively destroying the value of your purchase, there seems to be a fallacy somewhere in this marketing logic, as EA’s coercive methods appear to be all stick and no carrot. Moreover consider what we have been hearing out of the industry for the longest time now, that used sales are destroying the industry. On what basis does an industry that is fast eclipsing Hollywood assert that it is in the poor house? You do not find car manufacturers complaining that used car dealerships are putting them out of business. It is a falsehood of the highest magnitude, a booming second hand trade cannot exist without a healthy industry and robust new game sales. Does the industry even stand to gain from curbing used game sales, or just the mega-publishers?

This caption is mercifully free of lyric updates

I tend to only buy new games, I buy a lot of new games, I finance my purchase of new games in part by trading in unwanted games, if EA is able to destroy the value of my game library I will buy far less new games and even fewer EA games since they are not worth a shit once purchased. The number of used games in circulation indicates that I am not the only person who takes this approach, will poisoning the well of used game sales really force more people to buy them new? Or will it dampen new game sales across the board?

Runner up:

Oliver Motok

21 comments on “Editorial: Villains of the week”

  1. “You do not find car manufacturers complaining that used car dealerships are putting them out of business.”

    I would never pretend to know how the car sales industry works as compared to how a GameStop functions, but considering that a Chevy dealership is dealing with just new Chevrolet vehicles (or GM, I guess), and that the purchase of a vehicle is a more visible purchase than that of a game, I don’t know that your argument holds water. If someone trades in a Toyota for a Chevy, that’s another Chevy on the road that thousands of people will see and then contemplate purchasing. If you are talking strictly about used car dealerships, then people go there to buy a used car to begin with, so they were never going to buy new, and no one but that dealership was going to turn any sort of profit.

    To bring it back to games, EA doesn’t have an EA dealership that people can go trade in their Activision games and get cheaper EA games. They have a GameStop where everyone is fighting for the customers money, not the least of which is GameStop themselves.

    “I tend to only buy new games, I buy a lot of new games, I finance my purchase of new games in part by trading in unwanted games, if EA is able to destroy the value of my game library I will buy far less new games and even fewer EA games since they are not worth a shit once purchased. “

    I’m torn on this statement. One the one hand, the value of your game library is what you make of it and only really loses its initial value for the next person who buys what you traded in, as it retains all its core value while you yourself own it. On the other hand, if retailers start taking in and reselling certain games for less because of “Project $10” (or whatever a similar idea is from someone else), then its monetary value may diminish should you choose that avenue for reselling. On a third hand, if this never becomes the case – and I’m sure there are business dealings and handshakes that took place to prevent this – then you’re still in the clear and should never have to worry about having to enter a code for what they feel is the best incentive at the moment for people such as yourself to’ve bought new.

    On a fourth hand, I just became Goro.

  2. @Goro- My game library loses value insofar as as my games are worth less in re-trades. I like to try out something new, but I often find myself disliking a game that I have bought, meaning that it has ZERO inherent value for me beyond the price that it will fetch for me as a trade-in.

    -Used cars was an arbitrary example, the point that I’m making is that in a world full of second hand sales, the game industry are the only ones crying poor.

  3. What would a core gamer do with Babby? they would have nothing to play on it!

  4. yea, you’d have to realy want to play Child of Eden for that purchase to be worth it.

    oh wait, that’s multi-platform isn’t. and it’ll probably control like ass with Kinect, wouldn’t it? never mind.

    seriously though, how do you control things properly without buttons? there’s a reason people have been using buttons for so long, it’s cause they fuckin work.

  5. Apparently Child of Eden will have controller support also, it appears they have GREAT FAITH in Microsoft’s motion sensor controls.

  6. Oh, by that description I though you meant Molyneux … Microsoft must do their recruiting directly out of prisons … These people have no interest in UNDERBOOB Oyashiro, because Pedobear would not approve of that.

  7. They don’t believe in UNDERBOOB at all, They will not be saved. They will burn in a fiery lake of shit. At least I hope they do…

  8. But that would make him look cooler… He doesn’t deserve the “Stache”.

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