Category: Digitized


Fuck me.

Why was it decided that Lost Swords would be singleplayer only?

The reason that we went singleplayer…well, originally, we were thinking about having a multiplayer option, but because we’re going with a pay-to-win model, we were worried that by having online multiplayer, for all the new users that would be coming in experiencing the game for the first time, they might be immediately deterred by fighting against opponents who had superior equipment and gear—and we didn’t want to have that kind of negative impact on new players.

In the singleplayer experience, having a pay-to-win structure won’t impede the player’s experience with the game.

What’s sad is that they’re blatantly calling it a Pay-To-Win model. And are aware that no one likes this business model. Yet they’re going along with it anyway, confident that it will succeed.

A fighting game necessitates multiplayer. It is the purest form of competitive multiplayer. Removing the multiplayer, more or less, removes the main reason people play fighting games.

The problem of Soul Calibur since Soul Blade was that the games treated themselves more like RPGs than actual fighting games. Players would find themselves customizing their characters/weapons/what not more so than actually fighting. Soul Calibur 4 became more about stats and equipment rather than skill and execution, mainly because the fighting in Soul Calibur isn’t really good. Even then, it’s still fun to bash your opponents in brutal ways.

Namco’s proposition to exclude multiplayer from a fighting game is insane for a multitude of reasons, but their stated proposal is to not alienate anyone from their desired business model. Pay-to-Win is unpopular for good reason. Having to purchase digital items with real money to gain a statistical advantage in a video game causes divides and balance issues. Cutting out the multiplayer only masks the problem. That you are banking on the players to be addicted enough to pay money to get further and further into the game. But who wants to play a single player fighting game? One that you have to “Pay to Win” against an AI opponent? Fighting the AI is simply not fun. Artificial opponents are, no matter what the programming, prone to one-dimensional patterns where they perform the same moves over and over and might lose or win too much depending on the programming. Essentially, this would admit that Namco’s AI programming is terrible and that Soul Calibur can’t be a game measured by it’s fighting mechanics, but more so it’s RPG elements.

This is beyond the threshold of insanity. But what is most concerning is how comfortable they are with calling it what it is. As though they don’t fear losing money off of Lost Swords. It really shows just how confident Japanese developers are in digital considering almost all of the big J devs profits are coming from digital releases. After all, Tekken Revolution was clearly getting more users than Tag 2 was.

With SoulCalibur: Lost Swords, who are you trying to target? Traditional SoulCalibur fans or brand new players?

It might be a little bit of a cop-out answer, but we are trying to target everyone—old fans and new players alike. We definitely value our player base and we want to maintain the quality of the SoulCalibur franchise, but at the same time, this game is definitely catered towards an audience who will experience the franchise for the first time.

He says this while acknowledging the existence of an installment that killed the series and removed fan favorites and changed move inputs for no good reason, rushing production so that the game would not have to compete with Tekken Tag Tournament 2, and just being more animu than it needed to be.

No need to elaborate on how hollow his words are. But it’s worth noting that Namco wishes for audience substitution, much like many Japanese developers today. It seems to be incredibly widespread across the country. Yeah sure, it’s been a good 20 years, but geez.

Can you talk about the difference between western and eastern free-to-play or mobile markets?

In regards to moving to free-to-play, in regards to the user base, the Japanese audience is very cooperative, and we’re very happy about that. The reason for going free-to-play wasn’t so much about the business model itself, but the idea that we wanted to expand the market to the more casual user, and we thought that the free-to-play mold would fit that model better.

This is a telling statement that really shows Namco’s contempt for people who do not agree to their way, and seems to paint a nasty picture of Japanese developers in general, namely Sega. But what’s more is that if Japanese audiences are easily lapping it up, that doesn’t bode well for the rest of world. We don’t like everything the Japanese is accepting of, but if Japanese developers are gonna keep assuming that w/e works in Japan will work everywhere else, they’re going to be globally irrelevant as the years go on. They might be already considering all the games they desire to produce now is exclusively appealing to the Japanese. There’s nothing coming out of Japan that has global appeal anymore.

*sigh*, it’s like reading news about mad men who came up with a new scheme to get money that no one likes, but they’re so sure of it because 5 year olds fall for it. I guess I’ll put Soul Calibur in the “dead franchise” category. It’s been butchered for the last 3 entires thanks to the Tekken whores and the unnecessary changes have ruined the games for the worst. And now this!?

I think I just threw up a little bit in my mouth. F2P and the causualization of games is ruining my hobby.

This is F2P done horribly wrong. An online model like League of Legends would have been much better, where you are just buying characters and skins. I’m sure this game forces you to grind for “gold” to buy necessary items if you don’t pay money.

This makes free players bored/mad because they have to grind, and it makes paying players mad because they are being nickeled and dimed so they can match the artificially increasing difficult ramp.

Fantastic. I hope they come out with a new Samurai Shodown. Probably not.

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No, I’m not a dev.

I know this post won’t be featured on anything considering the “SINFUL THOUGTS” I posted earlier will more than likely deter everyone, but regardless, I’m a little disturbed why we can’t just use the term “REAL Multiplayer” to describe Local.

I don’t know why developers would need to explain why they continue using Local Multiplayer. It’s not an element of gaming that should ever be abolished, which seems to be the implication of the article.

To put it bluntly, to me, Online Gaming has no appeal to me. Mostly because the people you end up playing with/against.. happen to be fuckwits. Hardcore gamers are the most likely opponents you deal with in Online gaming sessions, and if message boards and some blogs are any indication, they aren’t very desirable people to be around.

Or the more accepted version because it’s “funny”

The internet brings out the absolute worst behaviors in people. Given the almighty power of anonymity, the Hardcore are free to show people their asses with no regard for any silly concepts such as “sportsmanships”. “Courtesy” and “Consideration”. Or anything pertaining to the phrase “play nice”. “That’s for pussies”. In all seriousness, Online gaming is nothing more than a mini-alpha male environment comprised of people who more or less go into some NatGeo behavioral pattern of comparing sizes. If Xbox Live alone isn’t enough, you can check out games like Grand Chase where the community will be more than happy to bemoan you just for having crappier gear.

So why not just invite “friends only”? No one should have to go through the trouble of filtering in and out specific screen names just to have a grief-free gaming experience. And half the time, all it will amount to is joining up in a forum, making a thread, and specifically asking certain players for help in a video game. This, I feel,  trivializes the appeal of online coop into some “community” self-help service where detached players must beg message boards for in-game help. It takes away the “soul” of the coop experience. Having an actual friend or sibling along to tackle a game together.

And even then, playing with people online feels incredibly detached. Half the time, you’re basically watching several more characters join you in a quest to do w/e it takes to win. They might as well be AI controlled characters. Playing Dragon’s Crown truly gives you that detached feeling of how an Online game usually goes. Players will have no sense of true coordination and will simply do their own thing to get through hoards of enemies and/or rival teams. You don’t know what goes on in the minds of the other players, you simply see them failing worse than you or doing a helluva lot better than you at destroying enemies or you. Nothing screams detached more than the prospect of Online gaming allowing you to play with gamers from all around the world right in your living room. What’s the difference between that and playing against someone 5 states away from you? The latency? Probably. Players might have the options of posting up their flags to give the indication that they speak an authentic language, but you still get the same type of game time where you see random characters running around doing their own stuff. The excitement of playing with people globally is diminished by their lacking presence to give you an indication that you are playing people globally. At the end of the day, you’re really just playing alone pretending that you are playing with people.

A big problem with this is due to the lack of communication. Since most games adopt a “type your response in” kind of communication set for people too cheap to buy a microphone, you’d literally have to stop playing the game just to talk the people you’re playing with. It’s a hindrance for sure. But then the usual response is of course to buy a microphone. I don’t know why I have to purchase the ability to talk to people, especially since most of them are the aforementioned bastards that many would rather have no business with.

Not to say this is exclusive to online settings, but ratio-wise… yeah. The best the local cats have to deal with are children and teenagers.

There also the financial prospect which… I’m sure most well-off people will disregard. You pay for the console, you pay for the pricey ass games, you pay for the internet subscription, you might pay for the in-game subscriptions if need be, you pay for the microphone for in-game communication, and you’re off to play a game where you can barely connect half the friggin time. Most areas within the US have shit internet or NO internet at all to work with. When people raised hell about Xbone possibly being “always online”, everyone had mentioned that not everyone in the country had equal access to the internet on a regular basis, or at all even. Why use all the resources when I could invite some folks over and only use the electricity? Especially as much energy the Piss Station uses?

Everyone I’ve contacted in some way knows I have shit internet. And when I move at the end of the month, I won’t have ANY internet available, so if I wanted someone around to tackle a game with… or have someone’s ass to kick, I would need to get out of the house/apartment to find folks with the same idiotic interests that I have.

And in particular regards to fighting games, I would prefer this because I would know for sure if I’m gettin my ass whipped legitimately. You know how everyone complains about bad netcode for every fighting game available? Because for some reason, the games struggle to maintain a consistent connection between you and the player 5 states away, and this comes at the expense of overall playability. Controls will have these very noticable delays between the initial input and the actions on screen. It’s rare to find a lag free match in which you could perform well in a game based around fast reaction times. Not to mention the glitchyness of a game with bad latency. Players could see if other players are “warping” around the room, or if the game seems to “pause” midplay. It’s a completely different experience when you go from smooth ass local… into bugged up online. The horror stories I’ve had from trying MK9 and PSASBR online, maaaaan.

This kinda looks fun. 😛

I’m aware as people get older, playing games with other people around you becomes that much harder as there becomes less time for leisurely activities in order to feed families or keep your house/apartment in order. So if you had the desire to play a game, you damn sure don’t want to play it alone. Playing games alone isn’t that fun. Anyone can attest to that. People who play games alone are more likely to do so as a means of relieving stress or to curb boredom. But if you’re really into a game and you’re at an age where everyone is too old to be “invited” for a game, yeah, online seems like a benefit (or even having family over with some hyper active kids you can show off to). Otherwise, it’s not so much a staple, but an adult’s alternative to getting social gaming. And it’s not a real multiplayer experience. It’s more of a crutch. You know… you’re old and shit you had access to (like friends with interests in games) start becoming rare, then you get to one of those “age crisis’s” and… dammit, I’m rambling. Kinda sounds depressing in a way.

The appeal of Local Gaming stems from the fact that Gaming has always been a social activity. People are social creatures. They don’t want to give up their ability to be around people just because it’s a digital space. All the teenage freaks online… that’s another story. I’d blame that on the public school of how kids are dragged to institutions surrounded by complete strangers with too much pent up energy being forced to take tests not because they need their skills to be evaluated, but so the schools can pound their chests at how much better their teachers are…. but that is irrelevant.

….Seriously, Play Brawl and tell me if Online made a difference for that game. 😛

Physical games are still preferred.

This looks smexy

I could see the demand for digital increasing simply because digital games happen to be of higher quality than the current crop of physical media we get today. Shit, one look at Capcom’s catalog would tell you their digital Duck Tales game is a helluva lot better than their RE6 mantra. Even SF2HD is hotter than SF4. Sega? Definitely digital. Namco? Tag 2 doing worse than Revolution is strange enough as it is.

Even then, there is a strong desire to keep physical copies of what people buy. The sense of ownership (people like owning crap), the ability to let people “borrow” a game, actual refunds outside of EA, and a reduced chance of burning out Sony’s piece of shit harddrives. So if the physical games are gonna be the same long drawn out pieces of hollywood pandering bullshit like the Last of Us, Heavy Rain, Animu driven bullocks like Skyward Sword, Tales of Xillia, or any game that sends people running toward that damn Madden franchise, the demand for digital is only going to get bigger. Especially since the “core gamer” population is decreasing.

Unfortunately, we can’t expect much when the “biggest game of the launch years” is some shit called Watch Dogs. Thugs with a Batman complex FTW.

That said, why does everyone keep yapping about Steam so much?

Microsoft selling Kinect-less xbones.

Well, they’re definitely throwing us some bones now. It’s ironic that after all the anti-consumer remarks about how people “don’t like not diggin Xbone” could fuck right off, they’re actually taking…. baby steps in a direction to please their audiences. Even then, their real feelings haven’t changed.

To be clear, as we introduce this new Xbox One console option, Kinect remains an important part of our vision,” said Spencer. “Many of you are using Kinect for Xbox One every day. In fact, more than 80 percent of you are actively using Kinect, with an average of 120 voice commands per month on each console.

It’s amazing how manufacturers are trying their best to blow off any supposed assumptions about their “new direction”. Nintendo with the 2DS saying “We still want to make your eyes bleed”. Even then, they’re showing that they are willing to compromise if it meant breaking that bread.

Nintendo, on the other hand, is going on the path of wasting money on software to “show the value of a touch screen”. If they failed to show it with the DS beyond menu navigation, trying to force the innovation in damn near every genre isn’t going to cut it. Has the touch screen been useful for any game beyond mobile crap and RPGs?

Yurugu’s influence is strong.

Sega Sammy reported a mild drop in profits in the last fiscal year compared to its previous year and poor sales of packaged games in its consumer business segment, spurring the company to pour more resources into launching mobile and free-to-play games in the coming year.

The company reported that sales of boxed games like Total War: Rome II and Football Manager 2014 were disappointing, but took pains to highlight the favorable performance of digital games like Phantasy Star Online 2 and mobile games like Chain Chronicle.

To that end the company plans to launch 43 new digital games in the coming fiscal year, 30 of which will be free-to-play titles. The company will also be working to convert properties that have traditionally been sold as packaged games to digital products.

Look at this fantastic nonsense. 30 F2P games in a year. 

You know the similarity between Sega and Capcom? Both their retail games have been underwhelming on all fronts, especially Sega. Have they managed to sell ANY retail games since 2005? Lack of quality and awareness be damned. With the exception of maybe the vocaloid nonsense, I can’t see Sega having any good times at the best buy. But the quick fix solution is to go digital now. According to the whole word, digital sales are spiking upwards, reaching the heavens and soaring above the world.

Course, when you look at Sega’s output in comparison to their retail releases…

Even with it’s bullshit “No Dpad” gameplay

To…

Their digital output is genuinely better than their retail games. And that usually seems to be the case. Digital games take after more “Arcadey” games than retail titles (with the exception of those shitty F2p Namco fighters) than their literal computer brethren, so seeing as they get more attention is obvious.

F2P, however, is a business model that has come under fire for numerous occassions, mostly because the insidious methods publishers have used to get you to pony up. As I’ve stated from my experiences with F2P MMOs, usually if you go free, you are fucked for the majority of the game. You will be severely underpowered for everything, and you will never get to experience a majority of the game’s perks without paying (Or Ntreev is such a bastard company that it certainly seems that way). I remember playing Dungeon Fighter and never having as much frustration as I did with Grand Chase, not to mention the community wasn’t a bunch of fuckwits that wanted to show off it’s stats.

Sega isn’t a company I would trust with any kind of F2P model or MMO models in general (and before anyone asks, no I don’t play Phantasy Star over the internet). Considering they’ve had one digital/mobile game (Kingdom Conquest?) where they only gave one region their most godly equipment while everyone else got screwed. “Good luck with that PVP environment, Baka Gaijin“!

Personal experiences aside, I can’t see how they plan to manage 30 different F2P games all at once. Sure, they’ve bought an assload of developers out, but outside of the PSO2 team and the Total War devs, pulling this off without a hitch seems fallible.