• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.
  • Hey Guest. Check out the NeoGAF 2.2 Update Thread for details on our new Giphy integration and other new features.
  • The Politics forum has been nuked. Please do not bring political discussion to the rest of the site, or you will be removed. Thanks.

Cruncheons 44: Soul Sacrifice, Guacamelee, Riptide, Blood Dragon, Gunslinger, XB1

Eel O'Brian

Member
Aug 29, 2005
2,293
5
1,215
www.cruncheons.com
http://cruncheons.podbean.com/mf/web/u6pznb/Cruncheons44.mp3

SEGMENT ONE

Doug sits in the corner as Robert, Arian, and Kevin discuss the newly announced all-seeing all-knowing doubleplusgood Xbox One. He joins back in for some discussion of the Wii U and Ubisoft's apparent $15 downloadable game initiative.

SEGMENT TWO

(1:15: 20) Puzzle and Dragons, revisited
(1:17:45) Soul Sacrifice + Vita talk
(1:23:10) Guacamelee!
(1:29:50) Dead Island: Riptide
(1:33:55) Call of Juarez: Gunslinger
(1:37:00) Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon
(1:45:35) Don't Starve

We'll talk to you again soon!
 

Brobzoid

how do I slip unnoticed out of a gloryhole booth?
May 8, 2006
14,294
0
0


bueno~
 

GhaleonQ

Member
Aug 24, 2006
11,572
18
1,260
Milwaukee/Wisconsin Rapids/Hanover
Superb episode. I don't think I was surprised by the review portion, but I always appreciate the quality of the breakdowns even when I don't care about the games.

However, I have to applaud the Xbox 1 portion. The key part was where the crew highlighted that consumers often think of services or features as existing in vacuum, but that they're always part of some larger system or plan. I have no problem with those who want a digital consumer universe, and I'm 1 of the people who'd prefer an archaic, physical product, artwork-based medium. The people in-between who want all of the conveniences of 1 without any of the inconveniences are the ones making message board dialogue skippable.

I get pleasure out of a lot of the funny or zealous "pro-consumer" posts, but I can't be on board knowing that the half-measures a lot of these posters took in the last generation created the horrific one (in my view) we're about to enter.

Because I had an aversion to the PC games industry (I loved some genres, but not all and certainly not the business model), I was dumb and slow to realize that they've experimented far more successfully with business models than consoles/handhelds. I don't think, "FLOCK TO STEAM," as mentioned, is a realistic strategy to alert console makers of their misdeeds, but it's certainly not the worst option.
 

Rufus

Member
Sep 8, 2006
7,634
0
0
I don't think, "FLOCK TO STEAM," as mentioned, is a realistic strategy to alert console makers of their misdeeds, but it's certainly not the worst option.
Me neither, but it seems it's inevitable anyway.
 

Gattsu25

Banned
Jun 6, 2004
33,447
2
0
USA
blog.gattsu25.com
One of the faulty justifications in the XB1 discussion that was also present in the last episode.

Re: always online/online only - Customers asked for this. It is the reason why iOS and Android have been eating the console manufacturers lunch. Steam also does this.

Except, you know.. iOS, android, and steam don't require that you connect to the net every 24 hours to verify that your auth keys are still valid. Airplane/Offline modes are standard in those services. Airplane modes work without a hitch. Offline mode requires that you shut down steam cleanly. They work, though.


A few years ago, I had to travel for work and spent 4 months without an ethernet or WiFi connection. I was still able to buy Little Big Planet and play that. I was still able to play games on my offline iPod Touch.




I wouldn't be able to play XB1 games. The reason: time travel didn't exist back then.
 

Eel O'Brian

Member
Aug 29, 2005
2,293
5
1,215
www.cruncheons.com
That's very true. We don't know what the time frame is going to be for the authentication checks, but there almost certainly won't be a completely offline mode. I'm only speaking for myself here, but what I meant by "we asked for this" didn't have much to do with always online, but rather the complacency I developed over time because the games I was buying on Steam were so cheap. I might have only paid an average of $10 for most of them, but added together there are hundreds of dollars worth of games sitting in my library that I can't ever sell or loan, and by continuing to buy I continue to send the signal that the loss of right to resale is acceptable.
 

Gattsu25

Banned
Jun 6, 2004
33,447
2
0
USA
blog.gattsu25.com
Yeah, I'm definitely part of the problem from that perspective as well. And when you look at iOS and Android where the average game price is less than a dollar...

The problem is that we buy these things because they are dirt cheap in ways that Microsoft and Sony will never provide. That discounted price is lost in the shuffle and the message is just: people are ready for digital only.

I wouldn't be shocked if there were a new game price hike. I think it would be suicidal, but these guys seem to be so blind to reason that even that would come as expected.
 

Brobzoid

how do I slip unnoticed out of a gloryhole booth?
May 8, 2006
14,294
0
0
I've bought a couple of discounted retail released games from PSN. Soul Calibur V and Shadow of the Colossus/ICO most recently. $20~ or so, which was low enough for me to consider the investment disposable and I also really like not having to lift my lazy ass off the couch and fiddle with discs.

Feel free to blame me more than yourselves.
 

ghst

thanks for the laugh
May 9, 2006
15,206
2
0
London, UK
That's very true. We don't know what the time frame is going to be for the authentication checks, but there almost certainly won't be a completely offline mode. I'm only speaking for myself here, but what I meant by "we asked for this" didn't have much to do with always online, but rather the complacency I developed over time because the games I was buying on Steam were so cheap. I might have only paid an average of $10 for most of them, but added together there are hundreds of dollars worth of games sitting in my library that I can't ever sell or loan, and by continuing to buy I continue to send the signal that the loss of right to resale is acceptable.

steam makes people awkward in that it's an example where surrendering their consumer freedoms in order to live safe under the watchful eyes of their bellevue sugar daddies has worked out for them, at least in the short run.

there's something disingenuous about getting all up on the idea of your rights, only to have a giant asterisk at the end whereby such rights are exempt if it means you're getting really killer deals. it's been years since i caught my first taste of digital distribution stockholm syndrome and its been exponentially reinforced with each new steam sale.

that's not to say i don't understand where the used games campaigners are coming from. i can't fathom the number of extra avenues for abuse that two giant entertainment conglomerates can conjure up with 100% control over every aspect of the eco-system. what you surrender in terms of agency on present consoles is already too strong for me, and i've no doubt that what's planned for next generation is nothing short of nightmarish.

and i'll guess i'll say this here since nobody reads this thread anyway: all consoles have DRM, all consoles pretty much are DRM. no hashtag is going to change that.
 

rohlfinator

Member
Sep 9, 2007
4,286
0
0
The people in-between who want all of the conveniences of 1 without any of the inconveniences are the ones making message board dialogue skippable.

I might be misunderstanding what you mean by this, but what's wrong with consumers wanting the best possible product?

The reason Microsoft is getting so much pushback is because in some ways they're proposing the worst of both worlds: PC/digital games' lack of resale, plus console games' high and inflexible pricing and unreliable backward compatibility.

I'm only speaking for myself here, but what I meant by "we asked for this" didn't have much to do with always online, but rather the complacency I developed over time because the games I was buying on Steam were so cheap. I might have only paid an average of $10 for most of them, but added together there are hundreds of dollars worth of games sitting in my library that I can't ever sell or loan, and by continuing to buy I continue to send the signal that the loss of right to resale is acceptable.

I'm plenty guilty of this as well.

But to defend it a bit (at the risk of sounding like I'm just making excuses for my Steam addiction :p) -- Steam gave us a bunch of benefits (convenience, pricing, social features, and an alternative to even worse DRM schemes) in exchange for our right to resale. So far, Microsoft hasn't shown us any benefits to their model, save for being able to play an installed game without a disc. Which for most people isn't worth the trade.
 

GhaleonQ

Member
Aug 24, 2006
11,572
18
1,260
Milwaukee/Wisconsin Rapids/Hanover
I might be misunderstanding what you mean by this, but what's wrong with consumers wanting the best possible product?

The reason Microsoft is getting so much pushback is because in some ways they're proposing the worst of both worlds: PC/digital games' lack of resale, plus console games' high and inflexible pricing and unreliable backward compatibility.

(I'm typing this remotely. Sorry if it's not clear.)

On point 2, I wholly agree. I'm certainly not anti-consumer.

I am, regarding point 1, for the rational voter/consumer/citizen. So, say, consumers can want inexpensive games that are relatively difficult to producer (say, a localized Japanese role-playing game with many character subquests). It is possible for producers to be profitable, in fact, while fulfilling those desires, and there are workflows that can be made efficient to do this.

They can also desire an archive of purchased games that transfers between devices. Again, no conflict between desires.

Can someone want to shift all pricing to the producer side (digital-only) and then complain about microtransactions and licensing-based unavailability? I don't see how. The 2 are at an extreme tension not easily resolved by normal market practices. (In turn, people like me can't whine about wanting 120-dollar rare imports for their own sake in a world where digital availability exists.)

I'll pick a more arcane one, too. Can a hyper Japanophile who broadly enjoys games lament Japan's decline while going digital only? Unlike music, where digital has made foreign art MUCH more competitive (no translation necessary if you don't want it), digital is going to put to the fore geographically proximate producers at the expense of foreign ones. In other words, where Joe Indie would have had to do something worthy of retail and compete with Konami's latest, they are now likely to edge out Konami simply by virtue of ease of access.

The podcast gave more traditional examples, but those are the ones that relate to me.
 

Fragamemnon

Member
Jun 7, 2004
14,306
0
0
But to defend it a bit (at the risk of sounding like I'm just making excuses for my Steam addiction :p) -- Steam gave us a bunch of benefits (convenience, pricing, social features, and an alternative to even worse DRM schemes) in exchange for our right to resale. So far, Microsoft hasn't shown us any benefits to their model, save for being able to play an installed game without a disc. Which for most people isn't worth the trade.

I think it is really worth highlighting "alternative to even worse DRM schemes" when Steam started getting wide adoption. The pressure here was two fold-on one end, you had World of Warcraft at its apex and the surrounding MMO space requiring "always online" play due to the nature of the games, and on the other end you had SecuROM and Starforce and CD checks on top of install CD keys and online accounts. When Steam started getting picked up, there was no real used PC game market left outside of some very small-volume business on eBay. There was no realized loss in ownership rights because very few people exercised the right of ownership past buying and owning the game.

Steam made you swallow a pill-always run this client-but it was made so much sweeter in convenience, pricing (which has gotten even better now that Steam is really a content distribution network as much as it is a store), and immediate access to games. Downloading and unlocking Bioshock and the Orange Box the minute they came out without having to deal with a physical preorder was a revelation at the time. Since then Steam has committed to getting better, and only really has one big goof-up (Greenlight), and even that is clearly getting reformed.

Besides, if Steam mishandled a release or was poop in your territory, you could still run your games outside of it by buying from a competitor or from a local store.

I'm not going to lie-in my typical fashion I don't care about used game sales. I can't be assed to deal with physical medium taking up space nor do I want to deal with the hassle of trading something in. In an ideal world, pricing of goods and services would compete between multiple consoles, i.e. Sony would want to have a more attractive content acquisition and management model than Microsoft. I think that competition would happen and consumers would eventually benefit, but we live in a world where peer to peer mulitplayer and Xbox Live Gold are actual things so it might not be realized until consoles become completely irrelevant after this generation (I am firm believer that this is the last generation of dedicated game machines).

Meanwhile Nintendo is sitting there looking at debugger errors for their account management system and sobbing at their keyboards with a softly spoken "please understand".