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The Extra Credits thread!! EC is amazing!


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Huh, I haven't been in the newest generation loop, so I wasn't aware of that little factoid, there. Man, it'd really be terrible if the person couldn't possibly get internet access to his consoles or something for important content... like my family, for the most part.

Also, I hope Alison didn't hurt you too much at the end :lol:.

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Enter Belen, NM. Population roughly around 6,000+, home town of Suzumebachi, and no one has high-speed internet. Maybe some downtown areas, schools, libraries, but getting a high-speed internet line out to your house is harder than finding a hot girlfriend who plays WoW, (cha-ching).

That said:

. No one.

It's hard to imagine that this kind of thing still exists in the continental US, but it's not really that rare. Now Qwest apparently is working on this, but has been for awhile. It's speeding up now because of the stimulus package dedicating a good chunk of money to it BUT case in point: These poor people can't even get this content when they DO buy the game new D:

(Note: This did not stop Suzums brother from getting one of the most painstakingly long achievements in World of Warcraft...but that kid really has no life)

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I agree with everything said in the video. However, there's one problem. People don't like the idea of paying extra for things already on the disc. Game consumers tend to be very... stupid when it comes to this stuff.

Look at the big controvsery over Intel's idea of processor "DLC". The plan is to release new processors with less power out of the box, and you have to buy some sort of addon card to unlock their true potential. Basically, everybody I know hated this idea, because they didn't like the thought of buying "crippled" hardware and having to pay extra to unlock the full value. Nevermind that the point was to offer the processor at an initial discount - let's say $150 + $50 for the addon. They would rather pay $200 than pay $150 and pay $50 to unlock more, even though overall this delivers better value to consumers.

This is the same reason people complain about many other things, like bandwidth caps. In theory, bandwidth caps should benefit the vast majority of internet users. A tiny fraction of users use an enormous sum of bandwidth, therefore it makes sense to discount everyone else but cap their plan (or tier it), and charge extra only if you're in the 1% that uses a lot. Or how about the World of Warcraft rest system? Initially, it was a penalty system where if you played for too long, you started getting half XP. Everyone hated it. Leave the numbers exactly the same and say you're getting bonus XP for having NOT played, and only returning to normal XP after awhile, and everyone loves it. The effect is IDENTICAL but because people are so easily (and predictably) swayed due to psychology, not reason, they get outraged at one implementation and not at the other.

Long story short, I personally have no problem with your suggestion(s) seph + co. But most people are simply not capable of moving beyond that instinct of "I don't want to pay more for unlocks!"

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A solid rebuttal. Honestly, our specific plan is far from ironclad. But I still think the overarching principal still stands: find a DLC model that feels more like a reward for the customer than a punishment or inconvenience. More money for the game makers happier customers. Everyone wins but Gamestop.

You're right, though. Finding a feasible way to do this where customers can't find something to complain about is going to be tough.

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Is downloading any kind of DLC these days really all that difficult though?

I don't really understand why, in your plan, the "DLC" has to be on the disc.

(As an aside, I don't really find entering DLC codes to be all that tedious but I may be inured to that from entering hundreds of gameshark codes with a gamepad. It really shouldn't take more than 20 seconds at most to enter a code.)

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One effect of this plan is that buying used games at GameStop will also be cheaper. Instead of a new, $30 game, GS customers can buy a used, $27 game and get a 10% discount on top of it.

However, selling your games back to GameStop will get you practically nothing.

(nothing has changed)

I think I would be able to get behind this idea, but then again, I'm not a whiny, snot-nosed 12-year-old or a confused, overwhelmed mother of 3, so I'm not really in the "target" video game buying demographic.

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Lack of broadband penetration in the rural US is definitely the biggest hurdle to this whole process. A town of 6000 people ranks as a "big" town in Iowa btw -- my wife is from a city of 1200 people (I jokingly call it a "village" after the old Sim City nomenclature). The lack of available broadband is rampant in the rural Midwest, and I don't see a good way of solving the "gamestop problem" until broadband gets to more places.

Edit: This does affect content to be unlocked already on the disc, as rural players have no way of hooking their machines up to the Internet to confirm their code.

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Maybe I'm missing the point, but I think that digital download systems fix the issue pretty well. It subverts Gamestop entirely, and the lack of physical materials could possibly help with the initial price.

But then there's the whole issue of a portion of the population that "needs" to have a physical copy of the disc/cartridge...

Save for that issue, isn't it a win/win situation for consumers and developers?

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Maybe I'm missing the point, but I think that digital download systems fix the issue pretty well. It subverts Gamestop entirely, and the lack of physical materials could possibly help with the initial price.

But then there's the whole issue of a portion of the population that "needs" to have a physical copy of the disc/cartridge...

Save for that issue, isn't it a win/win situation for consumers and developers?

When we finally get there, it will be. But I still think those days won't be here for a while yet.

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When we finally get there, it will be. But I still think those days won't be here for a while yet.

Man I hate that. We've always gotta put up with some shitty half-assed middle stage before arriving at something that works well. I can't stand the idea of DLC or post-purchase paid content, as a consumer. I understand the developer's point of view, however. It is better than the old days of freeware when you played a demo for a game on the PC, and they told you to send a check for $15 and they'll send you back some floppies with the whole game on it.

I actually remember back in the early 90's, in my town they tried setting up automated kiosks that would allow you to buy the full game, and actually bring in your own blank floppies and the kiosk would copy over the game on to your disk(s). Didn't work out too well, I think the machine wasn't coded too well and constantly broke or something.

But for me, I think that's a better solution anyway. I'd like to be able to buy games from vending machines instead of having to put up with people at GameStop asking me if I need help every 20 seconds, and also having to put up with the bullshit sales pitches every time at the sales counter.

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This has been a problem for OEM's for a long time now. Even with cars. I have heard before that automakers were aggravated they weren't being able to make money on the resell of their cars. I mean, a $20k car can probably go through around $40 worth of transactions over the course of it's life. Sell it used for $10k, and further on for $5k... yadda yadda. That's the way our market is and it's only until recently where OEM's were trying to make a profit on the used.

Given the percentage of profit in video game sales for the developers and the digital medium, maybe this profit-on-used technique was merely born out of necessity and ease, respectively. Currently though, the world sees that when they buy something, it's THEIRS, through and through out, no matter the product type.

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I too think they will fail. Optional peripherals are rarely successful (R.O.B. and Eyetoy being the exceptions)

Even if I usually prefer Nintendo's consoles, I do hope this doesn't turn into a disaster for either Sony or Microsoft. Competition is good, and can always bring something different for the table. Sega's demise was bad enough already.

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I too think they will fail. Optional peripherals are rarely successful (R.O.B. and Eyetoy being the exceptions)

Even if I usually prefer Nintendo's consoles, I do hope this doesn't turn into a disaster for either Sony or Microsoft. Competition is good, and can always bring something different for the table. Sega's demise was bad enough already.

I seriously doubt this could turn into a disaster of that scale for either company. But it could mean losses, which would still have an impact on the industry as a whole.

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I don't actually find myself agreeing with everything Dan and James say anymore. In fact, there is quite a lot I would protest to.

Weirdly enough, I only started having that problem once they moved onto the Escapist.

That's cuase they sold out to DA MAN. They is part of the whole thing nao. Thy got in an ao tehy is ownd by DA MAN.

Or maybe that's just coincidence.

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That's cuase they sold out to DA MAN. They is part of the whole thing nao. Thy got in an ao tehy is ownd by DA MAN.

Or maybe that's just coincidence.

It wasn't so strong at first. Maybe if the number of videos made pre-Escapist were as many as they are now, it would've happened then too. Given the manner it occurred, it was probably bound to happen anyway.

Now that I give it some thought, I'd have to say the exact point my opinion changed for the worse was the moment James recommended that any indie branch producing games for a bigger company would have all their completed intellectual product given solely to the parent corporation. I understand that's how business works these days, but it's another thing to just be so branzenly uncritical about it.

It makes sense for a corporate institution to exclusively own a triple-A product, because often it would be designed by committee, with the creative process widely spread out over a large number of people. This way, even though everyone did work on it, the only own the final product as a collective, not as individuals. This is how, say, Toy Story 3 is considered a "Pixar film" rather than "a film directed Lee Unkrich," like auteur theory would state. Most video games have this given to them, like how a Zelda game is a Nintendo game, not strictly speaking a Miyamoto game. (There have only been a few exceptions to this, like Tim Schafer, Hideo Kojima, and Shigesato Itoi. They're a very small minority, as we can understand.)

However, Indie games work oppositely. They're more directly linked to the creative prowress of a smaller group of people, or sometimes even a single person. If a bigger employer is to lay absolute claim to anything the indie group makes during their work period there (even if the product is the result of years worth of experience previous to the employment), the indies would essentially be screwing themselves if they actually bothered to come up with a good idea and work on it themselves, especially if their resources are too limited.

Maybe I'm just a n00b here with no industry experience, but I instantly thought that James' idea there wouldn't work because the disincentive from good product is just too strong. I've been looking at these videos more critically ever since.

(There's something very odd about gaming this regard as whole. When I first heard about Indie Brawl, it was in the news that Pixel couldn't let them put any Cave Story material in it because it would somehow violate the WiiWare game's contract with Nintendo. Then same thing happened with La-Mulana, and they soon found out that nearly every indie Wii game was off limits, yet somehow XBLA games were still safe. It sounds like Nintendo's been shafting them like crazy. I mean, we all agree that a book is the product of its author and not it's publisher, right? What's the rationale in making video games so different?)

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It wasn't so strong at first. Maybe if the number of videos made pre-Escapist were as many as they are now, it would've happened then too. Given the manner it occurred, it was probably bound to happen anyway.

Now that I give it some thought, I'd have to say the exact point my opinion changed for the worse was the moment James recommended that any indie branch producing games for a bigger company would have all their completed intellectual product given solely to the parent corporation. I understand that's how business works these days, but it's another thing to just be so branzenly uncritical about it.

It makes sense for a corporate institution to exclusively own a triple-A product, because often it would be designed by committee, with the creative process widely spread out over a large number of people. This way, even though everyone did work on it, the only own the final product as a collective, not as individuals. This is how, say, Toy Story 3 is considered a "Pixar film" rather than "a film directed Lee Unkrich," like auteur theory would state. Most video games have this given to them, like how a Zelda game is a Nintendo game, not strictly speaking a Miyamoto game. (There have only been a few exceptions to this, like Tim Schafer, Hideo Kojima, and Shigesato Itoi. They're a very small minority, as we can understand.)

However, Indie games work oppositely. They're more directly linked to the creative prowress of a smaller group of people, or sometimes even a single person. If a bigger employer is to lay absolute claim to anything the indie group makes during their work period there (even if the product is the result of years worth of experience previous to the employment), the indies would essentially be screwing themselves if they actually bothered to come up with a good idea and work on it themselves, especially if their resources are too limited.

Maybe I'm just a n00b here with no industry experience, but I instantly thought that James' idea there wouldn't work because the disincentive from good product is just too strong. I've been looking at these videos more critically ever since.

(There's something very odd about gaming this regard as whole. When I first heard about Indie Brawl, it was in the news that Pixel couldn't let them put any Cave Story material in it because it would somehow violate the WiiWare game's contract with Nintendo. Then same thing happened with La-Mulana, and they soon found out that nearly every indie Wii game was off limits, yet somehow XBLA games were still safe. It sounds like Nintendo's been shafting them like crazy. I mean, we all agree that a book is the product of its author and not it's publisher, right? What's the rationale in making video games so different?)

If it helps to put things in perspective, Portal is what it is today thanks to an indie/AAA relationship very much like the one we described.

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