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wtf is the latest gaming outrage about?

post #1 of 293
Thread Starter 

Today's Jim Sterling video on what's going on with NBA 2K18 has convinced me that we need a new "wtf...." thread here in the Video Game section because shit like this is happening every week now, and this latest one is fucking appalling. 

 

 

Fuck me. The sooner some of the people in the game publishing industry fall down a manhole, the better. This really is becoming one of the worst industries which pains me to say, because I love gaming. I just hate what certain clueless people in the industry are doing.  

post #2 of 293
I read an article recently (can't remember where) that talked about how the gaming industry was becoming more and more like the gambling industry. Coming up with all kinds of ways to leech as much money as possible out of its audience.

Microtransactions in full price games are fucking disgusting. Plain and simple and I'll never fucking support them.

If only other people would do the same. Cause the reason they pull this shit is cause it fucking works.
post #3 of 293

You know a situation is bad when many are prasing NBA 2K18 because "sure it has microtransactions, but no loot boxes"

post #4 of 293
Thread Starter 

The whole loot box situation has gotten wildly out of hand. I can accept them in Free-To-Play games because they're a means of providing income to games which don't have box prices, but the use of them in games where you've already handed over your $60 is detestable. What's going on with Shadows Of War is one of the most horrible game practices I've seen in a while, and Warner Bros should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. 

post #5 of 293
People like to rag on EA or Ubisoft for shady shit, and with good reason, but WB Games has been the evilest and shadiest company when it comes to this stuff for a while now.

It's at the point when I simply refuse to buy one of their games at launch. And will instead wait till the Special Editions with all DLC are available at discount in a year or two.
post #6 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSaxon View Post
 

The whole loot box situation has gotten wildly out of hand. I can accept them in Free-To-Play games because they're a means of providing income to games which don't have box prices, but the use of them in games where you've already handed over your $60 is detestable. What's going on with Shadows Of War is one of the most horrible game practices I've seen in a while, and Warner Bros should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Codename View Post

People like to rag on EA or Ubisoft for shady shit, and with good reason, but WB Games has been the evilest and shadiest company when it comes to this stuff for a while now.

It's at the point when I simply refuse to buy one of their games at launch. And will instead wait till the Special Editions with all DLC are available at discount in a year or two.

Yeah, Injustice 2 managed to avoid it by making the whole equipement aspect worthless in multiplayer, so I caved in with that game...but Shadow of War's microtransactions look awful.

 

And NBA 2K18 already slashed the prices for their microtransactions after the outrage.

post #7 of 293

Not that I have had much interaction with microtransactions outside of Destiny and Overwatch but the latter I think did things right to a large degree. Lootboxes were pure cosmetics and did not affect gameplay. Have I spent a metric fuckton of money on costumes for my OW characters? Yes.  But Blizzard created a game that was fun to play, had an amazing lore behind it and were very good to their community so I had very little problem paying for the game 3-4 times over.

 

Destiny 2 though? Fuck a bunch of emotes.

post #8 of 293
Thread Starter 

If you want Shadows Of War's true ending - you're either going to have to grind like playing the game was your second full time job, or you're going to have to use your ca$h to buy the loot boxes they've added to the game. 

 

Oh, Warner Bros. You really are the worst gaming company.

 

Quote:
When you run out of in-game money, you have two choices: Make a huge time investment by hunting down orcs in your game world and earning chests via vendetta missions, or spend some real money to get the more powerful orcs you need now. Does the game ever force you to spend money? No. I’m sure you can get to the end of Shadow Wars without spending a dime, as long as you’re patient and persistent. But locking progress through this mode (and, again, toward the game’s true ending) behind either spending more money or doing tons of tedious busywork feels at least greedy if not predatory.usywork feels at least greedy if not predatory."

 

Quote:
 In the game's actual final act, you cycle through the four fortresses you explored previously for a total of 20 more defending siege battles. If you haven't upgraded the Orcs you met early in the game--and up until this point, there was no reason to--you have to replace and upgrade your entire retinue of Orcs to match this more powerful invading force. The enemies you face level up with each encounter, so you're also forced into upgrading each castle over and over again, either by building up your current Orc army or finding new fighters and replacing the old. This Sisyphean quest has no corresponding significant characters to keep you company or explain why it's important to tackle the defense missions in the order you do. It's not even clear, exactly, why you want to do them at all.

More than once I felt like giving up on this quest thinking I'd stumbled onto some optional side content that was clearly only made for obsessed completionists. But enduring on, I found that finishing every stage unlocks the final cutscene and credits. It did not feel worth it.
post #9 of 293

Man, fuck that noise. 

post #10 of 293
Warner Bros. video game branch has to make up for the amount of money it's film division is set to lose on Blade Runner 2049.
post #11 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by catartik View Post

Warner Bros. video game branch has to make up for the amount of money it's film division is set to lose on Blade Runner 2049.

It's already offset by WW, IT and Annabelle.
post #12 of 293

This is unashamedly lazy of me, but can someone concisely explain the 'loot box' phenomenon to me, and how it's different to other microtransactions? I'm seeing talk of it everywhere, but I'm not sure I've played a game that features them.

post #13 of 293
So, with regular microtransactions, you will have certain items, whether cosmetic or otherwise, that you can pick and purchase at certain prices.

What loot boxes do, is they take those same items, jam a couple into a mystery box and then sell those to you. It turns into gambling then essentially cause it forces you to buy a lot for a simple chance to get the item you want.
post #14 of 293

F2P mobile companies found a long time ago people respond better to the chance of purchases and snazzy little opening animation than they do just purchases.

 

If something costs $100 of 'stuff' to buy, people won't ever save for it. If something costs a dollar for a 1 in 100 chance to appear, they'll spend $100 to get it.

 

Every game has loot boxes now. PUBG has them for cosmetics, and frankly, my character is dressed about as well as I care, so i literally just open the boxes and sell them. For REAL money on the steam store.

 

Would you like to buy a trenchcoat?

 

 

Yours for only:

 

 

I kid you not, two or three of these sell a day.

post #15 of 293

Okay I see why people hate them. As a general rule I never touch microtransactions as a matter of principle. Games that essentially need you to buy into them in order to properly enjoy the game can kindly fuck off.

post #16 of 293

I have no problem wit microtransactions or loot boxes as long as they dont limit gameplay, unlike in this case; guess I'll watch the True Ending in youtube!

post #17 of 293
Thread Starter 

I blame Overwatch personally. Previously only Free To Play games would try this shit and nobody had a problem because those games needed some way of paying for themselves. Overwatch showed that there's a large number of people who will happily embrace the same system in their $60 game. 

post #18 of 293

Forza tried it, there was a backlash, they dialled back. Forza is doing it again now.

 

I mean, we complain about these games being 'full price', but bear in mind the cost of games has not increased with the cost of development. We just aren't prepared to pay the extra twenty to thirty dollars that really should be tacked onto these games these days due to their increased cost of production. I think this model is here to stay unfortunately, and all we can do is punish the worst offenders.

post #19 of 293
Thread Starter 

If a system is reasonably fair I can cope with it (i.e it's only cosmetics), but what EA is currently trying with SWBF2 is unforgivable. No multiplayer game should feature a system where you can purchase in-game advantages over others, and locking them inside a lootbox so twelve year old kids can use their parents' credit cards to beat their school friends is adding insults to injury.

 

I honestly worry what gaming is going to look like in two or three years.   

post #20 of 293

I'm scared to death about how RDR2 is going to be with the microtransactions.

post #21 of 293

Yeah, Rockstar is milking GTA Online for all it's worth from my understanding. I never truly got into that, but I still read about the price of certain items.

post #22 of 293

Well, I'm 43.  I guess now's as good a time as any to stop buying new games.  

 

 

Though wait a second?  You're selling PUBG cosmetics for how much on Steam?

post #23 of 293

I'm not, I wish! But most of the things in the crates I get I can sell for 6 to 7 cents a go. Free money, usually make one item a session (say two to three games?). Have found a few items for a dollar a piece. People just snap them up.

post #24 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Judas Booth View Post
 

I'm scared to death about how RDR2 is going to be with the microtransactions.


It better be kept far away from single player content.

post #25 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ska Oreo View Post
 


It better be kept far away from single player content.

 

I'm not a multi-player gamer guy, so I'm in full agreement with you there.

post #26 of 293
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalyn View Post
 

Well, I'm 43.  I guess now's as good a time as any to stop buying new games.  

 

You're never too old to game. Just support the companies that do things right. 

post #27 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalyn View Post
 

Well, I'm 43.  I guess now's as good a time as any to stop buying new games.  

 

 

Boo to that. Growing up is for suckers!

 

Although I do spend way more time and money on smaller games than $60 titles these days. There's a plethora of interesting, niche, risk-taking titles under $20. Other than one or two must-haves each year, the $60 AAA games feel like a waste of money. The $60 games w/ microtransactions feel like a waste of money that also spat on me for good measure.

 

And I only rent things that spit on me.

post #28 of 293

To be honest all this talk makes me glad that I rarely venture out of my insular world of 90's throwback indie games.

post #29 of 293
Thread Starter 

Just wait until they go back and start adding this shit to games retroactively, Paul. Before you know it, you'll have to open lootboxes for a chance to get the BFG in the original Doom

post #30 of 293
Videogames always have stupid money gobbling aspects. People who drop 80 bucks every year on updated rosters for "Sports: Current Year" are probably the longest running scam victims. I've probably bought Final Fantasy III six times. They'll get you somehow.
post #31 of 293

Back in my day we got a cartridge with a game and that was it!  No internet connection.  no saves.  No patches.  No DLC.  We got a game, it better work right the first time around, AND WE LIKED IT!!!

 

/Old Man Rant

post #32 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Munson View Post

Videogames always have stupid money gobbling aspects. People who drop 80 bucks every year on updated rosters for "Sports: Current Year" are probably the longest running scam victims. I've probably bought Final Fantasy III six times. They'll get you somehow.

Six times?

Okay, SNES, Playstation, Gameboy Advance, PSN, Snes Classic...please tell me the sixth one isnt that awful PC/IOS port.

post #33 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalyn View Post
 

Back in my day we got a cartridge with a game and that was it!  No internet connection.  no saves.  No patches.  No DLC.  We got a game, it better work right the first time around, AND WE LIKED IT!!!

 

/Old Man Rant

 

post #34 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by ryoken View Post

Six times?
Okay, SNES, Playstation, Gameboy Advance, PSN, Snes Classic...please tell me the sixth one isnt that awful PC/IOS port.

Snes, PS2, twice on the Virtual Console (ugg) and I had someone gift me the PC on steam. I never played it I swear!
post #35 of 293

Isn't this all Valve's fault, again?  I'm guessing loot boxes predate Counter Strike/Team Fortress 2, but they're the ones that normalized it?

post #36 of 293
Steam is all kinds of fucked up, but it’s mostly because of old fashioned bad business practices like refusing to honor refunds.

https://www.polygon.com/2017/5/16/15622366/valve-gabe-newell-sales-origin-destructive
post #37 of 293

I can just imagine a suited group of MBAs who don't even play games sitting in a conference room scheming on how to leech every last penny out of their consumers to boost the company's valuation.  

post #38 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSaxon View Post
 

I blame Overwatch personally. Previously only Free To Play games would try this shit and nobody had a problem because those games needed some way of paying for themselves. Overwatch showed that there's a large number of people who will happily embrace the same system in their $60 game. 

 

I'm cool with the lockboxes for something like Overwatch.  It's not a game that's designed to be 'finished', but something that they're constantly working on, tweaking, releasing content for and that their player base plays consistently over an extended period until it eventually dies or it's replaced by a sequel.  I have no problem with monetizing that long-term experience to subsidize continuing content rather than doing a single big DLC release like more narrative driven games do, so long as it's cosmetic items and fun side-stuff rather than anything that's a competitive advantage.


Sticking that into what's essentially a contained, single player experience like Shadow of War is just fucked, especially with actual story content locked functionally locked behind the paywall.  If you're selling me a game built around a narrative, I damn well better be able to finish that narrative within what I purchased. 

post #39 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalyn View Post

 

Though wait a second?  You're selling PUBG cosmetics for how much on Steam?

Yeah, holy shit. Guess I should start actually opening my old TF2 crates.

 

And if only there were a way to cash out your Steam Wallet.

post #40 of 293

PUBG has almost paid for itself, but I've been playing a while. I don't tend to do the collecting/trading thing, just don't care about virtual stuff, but enough people do. And I get the occasional 1 to 2 dollar item.

 

I'm still awful at the game.

post #41 of 293

and we have yet another controversy today...

 

 

...at this point, I'm with Jim - paying full price for a triple a game has begun to feel like signing up to be essentially fucked with by nefarious, greedy suits. The predatory attitude that is seemingly becoming the new normal in the industry feels more akin to casinos and online gambling than it does to any equivalent entertainment medium. I channeled my addictive personality into games at a very early age and it's the reason I'm one of the few male members of my extended clan not to have a problem with cards or slots or the ponies or betting on sporting matches. I got that rush from video games instead. Gaming saved me from a potentially miserable existence, so to see the very thing I used games to get away from entering into the fabric of the industry like this is fucking depressing I must say.

post #42 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by flint View Post
 

PUBG has almost paid for itself, but I've been playing a while. I don't tend to do the collecting/trading thing, just don't care about virtual stuff, but enough people do. And I get the occasional 1 to 2 dollar item.

 

I'm still awful at the game.

Oh yeah, I suck at that game.  But I've only played maybe 6 or 7 matches.  I just can't do more than 2 at a time.  It's just deflating to get in this huge map.  Find some guns.  Try to get to the play zone.  Sneak.  Hide.  Then out of nowhere someone runs up and shoots you in the back.  Game Over.  Yeah, yeah, yeah.  get gud. I know.

post #43 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalyn View Post
 

Oh yeah, I suck at that game.  But I've only played maybe 6 or 7 matches.  I just can't do more than 2 at a time.  It's just deflating to get in this huge map.  Find some guns.  Try to get to the play zone.  Sneak.  Hide.  Then out of nowhere someone runs up and shoots you in the back.  Game Over.  Yeah, yeah, yeah.  get gud. I know.

 

Hey, I'm not ashamed to say I get more kills just parachuting out of the plane at the end of the ride and killing the idle players than I do PLAYING the match. :)

 

Followed closely by lying down in a bathroom with a shotgun pointed at the door.

post #44 of 293
Thread Starter 

One of the EA Developers for Star Wars Battlefront 2 has said that "terms like Pay-To-Win and stuff like that are hard to dodge". You've got to admire the honesty of a guy whose game is accused of something and he's basically shrugged and said "Well, you might be right...."

post #45 of 293

So...

 

Are we seeing the collapse of the AAA game?

post #46 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ska Oreo View Post
 

So...

 

Are we seeing the collapse of the AAA game?

 

Maybe. There will be class action lawsuits by parents who've been sent bankrupt by little Johnny's loot box addiction and access to Mum or Dad's credit card, which will cause governments to step in and start legislating that loot boxes are gambling and games with them will need to be rated 18+. From there I see gated DLC, microtransaction stores and overly expensive season passes becoming even more anti-consumer than they even are now and some big publishers may even just say "fuck it" and start charging $80-100 for their titles instead. At that point it'll be interesting to see how the consumer base responds. Thing is, there will always be whales, always be dickheads with more money than sense who can keep the industry afloat for a few more years, but it really does feel like the triple a publishers have moved into the "let's strangle the golden goose" phase of their existence.

 

Do I think we'll have an old school crash to the point that EA go and bury thousands of copies of their next Star Wars loot box fuckfest in the New Mexico desert? Probably not, but this current "center" cannot hold. Something is going to have to change either from within, or enforced from without.The publishers greed will be their undoing at this point, but what the industry would look like after a "crash" is anyone's guess. Maybe we'll be left with one or two big players who suck up all the competition or maybe the landscape will look utterly alien in fifteen years or so. Either way if this keeps going as it is, it won't last forever.

post #47 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ska Oreo View Post
 

So...

 

Are we seeing the collapse of the AAA game?

 

The market is shifting. Big-budget games aren't going anywhere, but I do think we're going to see fewer and fewer $60 retail games going forward. It has become harder and harder for a new IP to break through at that price point, leaving us with our current situation where nearly every profitable $60 game is the 3rd or 8th game in a series. There is very little originality or creativity in the $60 catalog.

 

Combine that with how desperately publishers of hugely successful series are pushing microtransactions, and I could easily see the $60 price point being rejected by consumers. If I want to get my ass kicked by someone with more dollars than sense, I can do that for free.

 

Personally, I'm down to 1-2 $60 purchases a year. The rest of my gaming money is spent on smaller titles and the occasional month or two renting a year or two's worth of missed $60 titles. At the younger end of the gaming spectrum, my teenaged cousins spend most of their time playing free games. 

 

I'm not sure there's a long-term place in the market for $60 titles, and viewing the stagnation of creativity at that price point, I'm not sure that's a bad thing.

post #48 of 293
Thread Starter 

Am I right that Nintendo has avoided all of this lootbox/microtransaction nonsense? I tend to see their Spatoon brought up as a counterpoint to those who claim greedy publishers like Blizzard and EA need lootboxes in their games to keep servers running.

post #49 of 293

Games are becoming easier and easier to write with the various toolkits, so you can develop more complex games with fewer staff. Stuff like PUBG, shonky as it is, shows the potential a small team can make earning. Divinity, the potential with crowdfunding.

 

Yeah, AAA is going to struggle I think, maybe three years or so. As long as we don't get a tirade of nonsense retro platformers as the only thing I can play, I'm more than happy with that.

 

The biggest problem with indie games is the quality of the acting/voiceovers/motion capture. It limits stories in that regard. Building a full world, such as Horizon or Creed does, is going to be impossible with a tiny dev team, as it's not the tools but the sheer work required to texture and model such a thing that is needed.

post #50 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by flint View Post

The biggest problem with indie games is the quality of the acting/voiceovers/motion capture. It limits stories in that regard. Building a full world, such as Horizon or Creed does, is going to be impossible with a tiny dev team, as it's not the tools but the sheer work required to texture and model such a thing that is needed.
Which is why it makes far more sense to scale back to the point where such things aren't needed, which is what a lot of indie games do. Nobody needed voice acting, mo-cap, hundred-thousand-polygon models, or dozens of gigabytes of textures to get invested in Chrono Trigger.
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