owsf2000: (Default)
Looks like Bethesda is at it again with paid mod systems. I agree with various people in the comments about how any kind of paid mod system is going to just destroy the modding community as a whole.

The current attempt is at least trying to avoid the obvious problems of their Steam workshop attempt of a year or so ago where you immediately had people submitting other people's mods as their own. It's also apparently not going to try to stop free mods from happening - although like any company we can see that stance changing once they get a taste of the money.

But as I was thinking over this, I realized that this is just the next step down that slope of shit the video game industry has been taking for the last decade. The whole idea of cranking out games faster and cheaper with a higher price tag - with massive side effects.

1. Not doing proper QA/Beta testing - why do that when they can have the gamers themselves do the beta testing, or the bulk of it, after the game is released and patch it up (potentially) after the fact.

2. Cutting content, sometimes significant content, out of the game to sell as DLC later on. Sometimes as unlock codes for stuff already done. Other times (And more common now) with the dev teams just explicitly planning on the content to be done after a release date is set.

3. Cutting back on packaging with physical releases - gone are the days of the manual. Nowadays if a manual is included a company will even toot that as SPECIAL BONUS!

... It's early, I don't really feel like listing ALL the shit that's been happening right now, but you can get the idea. Basically games aren't actually sold complete anymore.

But really these paid mod systems are just the latest advancement on these cutbacks on paid labor.

After all, these things are basically nothing more than DLC. DLC the devs no longer have to plan for or write themselves. But they can take a chunk of the price tag for having someone else do it with a minimum of QA done on top.

As time goes on, if it catches on, you can expect games to come out more and more bare bones with the explicit intent that modders will willingly finish the game for shit pay after the companies take their share. (This particular attempt will have Bethesda taking a 30% cut. But as companies continue with this practice you can expect to see that percentage go up and up, bit by bit, until finally modders just stop applying to be slave labor. And then it'll go down a couple percentage points and everyone will thank the publisher gods for their kindhearted gesture to only request 85% of the profits instead of 90. :)
owsf2000: (default)
You remember the recent release of Metal Gear Solid V? Where the PC physical disc was actually just a disc with a steam installer on it with a free coupon for the download version of the game?

You know, the whole epic fail of them not realizing (And come on they have to be trying REAL hard not to get this) exactly what the group of customers that prefer and expect (or even only consider buying) a disc version?

Well, on a walk today I passed some game stores and in them I saw... Minecraft: Story Mode for sale as a disc!

Wait a sec... isn't only the first of five chapters even done?

Why yes. And that's exactly what you get with the disc - plus a DLC coupon for the remaining chapters whenever they get done.

I hate this. I really, really do.

Within 2 years, if people actually buy this piece of shit in droves, this will start to become the norm for physical releases - where the physical release will essentially be nothing more than the alpha (maybe beta if we're lucky!) version of the game, along with a DLC coupon to download the rest of the game later in the year/nextyear/whenever/hopefully when it's actually completed.

Which of course means "when we get to a particular part and we decide to cut you off and make you rebuy expansion packs and misc DLC that we don't want included with the inserted code we gave you with the buggy literally half finished product."

This is essentially exactly what I predicted they'd do with physical releases (Actually a bit worse than my prediction!) where the disc wouldn't even contain the full game anymore.

Actually my prediction was that they'd have the entire game on the disc, but it all locked out into a demo mode until you put in your little DLC coupon code. With this, the majority of the game (a full EIGHTY PERCENT) isn't even completed before they started selling it for full price. So I guess they've jumped over a step.

My link above is for the Xbone version, but there's similar disc versions for the PS3, 360, and I think PS4. (Can't remember seeing the PS4 version at the store, but saw the other two.)

So yeah. Death of physical media. By the end of this console generation it'll become standard practice, and when it comes time for a new console to replace what's on the go you'll have people going "why bother with physical discs. they never have the full game anyway. digital all the way!"

Just so we're clear, I won't be buying this lame ass disc version. I'll probably boycott the "game of the year version" they might release in a year's time - which will simply be the full game, minus DLC.

And just because this dick move pisses me off, I'm not buying it on steam either, I don't give a shit if it goes on a 95% flash sale. (And this means I'm not buying it digitally on the consoles either. :P)

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