• Announcements

    • khawk

      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Talroth

This is the future of video games? No wonder I've been buying so many board games lately.

112 posts in this topic

Yes, my compaint is the [b]NEEDLESS[/b] requirement to be in [i]constant[/i] connection with their servers.

 

There was NO reason that I should not have been able to play that game by myself, enjoying 90% of it, while I waited for them to bring the servers back online so I could do even more.

 

 

I now have hard limits on how many cities I can have? (Didn't see a way to import/export, regardless of how much memory I have on MY computer, I'm limited on their end?)

 

 

The industry is working hard to create a sense of mistrust against itself, and encouraging people to explore other hobbies. My generation grew up with video games, and now I'm many of us [i]losing interest[/i]. A group of guys I played countless hours of games at LAN parities with now get together to play boardgames.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Exactly, my issue isnt with requiring a connection now... it is what happens once EA turns off the server once the product reaches end of life.

I have heard exactly that same sentiment expressed about thousands of products since the mid 1990s.

When I was in school, I hear my professors talk about the same thing. They weren't complaining about SaaS. They were complaining about service bureaus, such as IBM, that had exclusivity requirements. They also complained about vendor lock-in, code escrow, and what happens when a product reaches its end of life.




Your argument is certainly valid, just understand that it is not new, nor is it exclusive to this one product.

That argument has been around since the beginning. As far as I can tell, that same argument will continue to be valid until the very end.


This argument is also one of the key features behind the F/OSS movement --- If you do not have the source code and the source data, you ultimately have nothing. Edited by frob
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yes, it certainly is not a new issue overall but because people did not complain about closed-source software, it has now progressed to the online activation of closed source software. Soon the users will have even less freedom (They might only be able to play on a certain day of the week for example lol).

Personally I boycott anything with DRM (Steam, Windows, iOS Development tools, Builder Xcessory PRO, etc...), but this is not enough because others simply are not doing the same. This means that not only does nothing change (and things get progressively worse) but it prevents correct (perhaps open-source) software from being developed because of the intense competition within the industry.

Luckily I never really liked SimCity, and I now prefer developing games to playing them... but I would be pretty upset if my favorite software stopped working.

Though as an aside and to show that I also have reservations with FOSS... Since Gnome for Linux is so badly written, unportable and impossible to maintain yourself... it might as well have online activation because it will be broken loong before the servers are taken down.

But there is no money in games anymore... The money is in *preventing* players from playing games. Edited by Karsten_
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, my compaint is the NEEDLESS requirement to be in constant connection with their servers.

I think it could have been handled better. I'm just saying I don't think it's an unreasonable requirement going forward given the world we live in. Really the largest reason it's a problem is because they fucked it up, not because it exists.

The industry is working hard to create a sense of mistrust against itself, and encouraging people to explore other hobbies. My generation grew up with video games, and now I'm many of us losing interest.

Eh. The world changes. This feels vaguely like a golden age fallacy. I mean lans are/were fun, but now I can have 3/4s of a lan experience every night without having to ever move my computer.

A group of guys I played countless hours of games at LAN parities with now get together to play boardgames.

That's good because it's a great time to be in board games. Between a general increase in quality and kickstarter making a crap load of board games viable it's quite honestly one of the best times to be in board games since I've been playing them.

For anyone interested in getting into them, Tabletop is a great web series that will give you good overviews of board games that might interest you.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The OP brings up a great point about modern gaming that I think the video game industry is deaf to.  It seems that there are many more people giving up on video games for board games than is noticed simply because those people are NOT playing video games and, obviously, NOT complaining.  Granted, there are a lot of new video gamers coming up in this new era that see the current state of things as "normal".  Much money is being made off of them and they are not yet jaded.  However, the rise in popularity of board games has been huge in recent years.  Many of these people were video gamers to begin with but prefer to be face-to-face rather than deal with the endless stream of obscenities from the prepubescent masses.

 

I don't like playing online.  I never have.  Lately, however, it seems that major titles must have a strong multi-player element.  As a result, I don't buy video games anymore aside from the occasional mobile game.  My gaming budget isn't small either.  My expenditures in video games for the past year have been almost zip.  On the other hand, my wife and I have spent about $3000 in that same time frame on board games and expansions.  This isn't an unusual amount for a board game hobbyist either.  There's more money being lost here than AAA publishers realize.

 

As for "online single-player", I'm not going to "whine".  Much like "video game violence" and "games as art", I'm ignoring it completely. ;-)

Edited by coderx75
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Would be very amusing if video games turned out to be a single generation fad... kinda like shoulder pads in the 80's.

But more and more I am going back to the old DOS games (via vbox or dosbox). I dont class this as being nostalgic either because some of these games I had never played but am still really enjoying. Edited by Karsten_
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My problem with this issue is Not one of infrastructure and the server problems, but rather one of game design.

 

What does the server get me?

 

Cloud storage of my cities.

Interaction with friends.

A community feedback system where my game play is theoritcally enhanced as aspects are now drive by other players, and not merely the same computer generated data as it has always been.

I won't buy the game, the last new game I got was Armed Assault II demo, if I recall correctly.

 

But this whole thing looks hell annoying. I mean, this is not America. Even with UPC, which is a pretty cool provider in Hungary, the net is down sometimes. I'm very happy that I have stable net for almost a year now. Even in Finland, paradise of internet it was down sometimes.

The idea of constant internet connection for a SINGLE PLAYER GAME is a total outrage.

 

I have a computer. Net is up: I lurk on forums, watch youtube, I can do other educational activities etc. Net is down: oh, I can play something. Wait. No.

 

 

Anyway, back on the quote:

Cloud storage of my cities. - WTF is that for? I can build fucking Coruscant or what?

Interaction with friends. - WTF is that for? Aren't we already have all sorts of fucking possibilities to do that?

A community feedback system... - well maybe I get that. (well, not really. Does it mean some extra widgets in the game?)

Edited by szecs
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Like I said we're reaching a point where there are fewer and fewer situations in which you will find yourself without internet access.

 

Until then, all of us losers with no stable internet should shut the fuck up.

Your whole post was a total bullfuck.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I don't want to sound offensive but it is the slightly naive statements like those from way2lazy2care that do allow publishers to get away with this kind of crap. Especially when these sorts of gamers will be the ones sitting around complaining when they can no longer play their games.

But this has all been discussed before, it wont change. I think this is killing the "AAA" industry but this could be good for the indies.

After all, no-one will have internet after the apocalypse... the next one ;) Edited by Karsten_
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites



Because Steam(mostly) does it right. I don't really mind DRM per se, I just hate crappy, bugged out DRM. Which is to say of DRM. I don't consider Steam to be more inconvenient than "please insert disc to play". If most DRM looked like Steam, I don't think there would be a lot of hate for it.

 
I think steam is more convenient than "please insert disc to play", or even DRM free games from for example gog.com simply because steam makes accessing my games from any computer, anywhere, easy and the DRM doesn't get in my way. (I've never even noticed it).
 
It is 2013 now so i don't have a huge problem with the always online requirement itself (I am always online anyway), but if i pay for a product and/or service i do expect it to be delivered at the date and time promised to me, there are no excuses, there is no such thing as an unexpected initial rush, with digital distribution you know exactly how many copies you've sold and you can stop sales in any region at any time. Blizzard failed with D3, EA failed with SimCity and i don't even care if Ubisoft fails or not anymore (I don't buy their games because of their past DRM fuckups and both EA and Blizzard has to be careful or i'll stop buying their games aswell).
 
If EA wishes to go down the always online route they need to commit to it, servers need to be up and running and can't be taken down just because a game is getting old, To get my money they will have to prove that they can deliver, not just on launchday but also 10+ years after launch.


Just out of curiousity, what does steam do that's functionally different from Origin? I mean, I've had no problems with Origin. I've had problems with SimCity, but Origin performs almost identically to Steam. Origin/Steam are just delivery mechanisms. I don't see why they are relevant to a game's servers being down. There are plenty of games on steam that have bad launch days. We are starting to conflate issues, and the general negative EA bias is starting to show.


I don't know if anything is different really, the DRM part of steam is not used by all games on steam, (But it is used by Valves games and a few others), games that use the steamworks DRM cannot be launched unless steam is running and unless steam is in offline mode they will require an internet connection to start. (You can disconnect while playing though unless the game has additional DRM aswell (Ubisoft likes to pull shit like that and add further restrictions on games bought through steam)

DRM free games on steam can be launched without launching steam (by going into the game directory and launching it from there).

Sim City is an EA game, it is EA that fucked up and you were the one who brought up origin, i never mentioned it, Steam was brought up because it got critizised for requiring a connection to start games in the past not as a comparison to origin. Edited by SimonForsman
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Until then, all of us losers with no stable internet should shut the fuck up.
Your whole post was a total bullfuck.

This is why it's hard for me to take these arguments seriously. Heaven forbid we actually try to have a polite discussion.

I never once said it wasn't shitty. I said the internet is becoming pervasive and it's totally shortsighted to expect games or any piece of technology not to adapt to that.
 

I don't want to sound offensive but it is the slightly naive statements like those from way2lazy2care

What about my statements was naive? That internet access is becoming an expectation rather than a luxury? Enlighten me.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

becoming != has become

does it really need explanation? Adopting to something that's not achieved yet?

 

Sorry for being a prick, but your post and some of your other posts annoy me, because you seem to have the ignorant "american" style, you doesn't seem to be aware that other parts of the world also exist (and obviously game studios are like that too).

 

Okay, if I'm not in the USA than why I want to play with recent computer games anyway?

 

Plus you seem to always act like the Devil's advocate (and not doing it that well...).

Edited by szecs
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

becoming != has become

We're nearing the point where the internet can be thought of similarly. As there are fewer and fewer places where one can be expected not to have internet connections there are fewer and fewer reasons not to require them.

Okay, if I'm not in the USA than why I want to play with recent computer games anyway?
 
Plus you seem to always act like the Devil's advocate (and not doing it that well...).

I don't live in the US. The US isn't exactly the pinnacle of internet quality either.

http://www.sbs.ox.ac.uk/newsandevents/releases/Pages/CiscoBQS.aspx
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Until then, all of us losers with no stable internet should shut the fuck up.
Your whole post was a total bullfuck.

This is why it's hard for me to take these arguments seriously. Heaven forbid we actually try to have a polite discussion.

I never once said it wasn't shitty. I said the internet is becoming pervasive and it's totally shortsighted to expect games or any piece of technology not to adapt to that.
 

>I don't want to sound offensive but it is the slightly naive statements like those from way2lazy2care

What about my statements was naive? That internet access is becoming an expectation rather than a luxury? Enlighten me.

 

 

Adapt to it? Sure, make use of more networking functions, encourage more social interactions, etc. But when a game is still 90% or more single player with no need, want, or desire to interact over a network, then what sense is there in 100% requiring you to have internet access [i]ALL THE BLOODY TIME?[/i]

 

And the naive bit about your statement is the fact that there are many reasons one might not have internet access, or access to the games servers, but still want to play the game they have legally purchased.

 

Lets list a few:

1. EA's servers are down for whatever reason.

2. My internet is down due to technical issues, and I want to play a game while I wait for a tech to come out and climb the pole and fix it for the fifth time this year.

3. Maybe I've lost my job, so I cut non-essentials at home, but still want to play a game I legally own and have already paid for...

4. Working up north with limited sat-based internet reserved for official data only. (Been there, done that, minor frost bite was enjoyed by all. Getting an internet connect far above the treeline can be surprisingly annoying)

 

 

Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against semi-regular 'check-ins' on a resonable basis, and I have nothing against games heavily focused on their multiplayer (such as MMOs). What I have a problem with is games that are basically single player expecting me to only ever play while connected to their server, simply because some bean counter is paranoid that I might not have paid for their game I bought from them.

 

Hell, given that apparently there are reversed engineered WOW servers out there, it wouldn't surprise me if someone will eventually come up with their own SimCity Server client. And guess which one I will be more interested in using: The company's official server, or my own private one?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the naive bit about your statement is the fact that there are many reasons one might not have internet access, or access to the games servers, but still want to play the game they have legally purchased.

I am aware, which is why I agreed with you in my previous posts.
 

Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against semi-regular 'check-ins' on a resonable basis

Just on this, to my knowledge this is how it works now. You need to be online to log in, then you need to be online to accept trade from the world market or switch cities I think. I haven't lost connection during a game, but I've seen coworkers lose connection and continue playing.

It would be cool if you could store regions locally just so you could switch cities and do regional trade though.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As long as people keep purchasing these games then it won't change, simple as that. smile.png

People moan and whine and behave, but why would the publishers care? All they care about is sales. They couldn't care less what you think if you still buy their trash.
I bought D3 assuming they learned something from WoW, and man.. I'm never doing that again. Don't get me started on D3 (I played it for 1 month or so, while D2 lasted years and years..) but I won't ever buy a game that requires an online connection again unless it's a purely multiplayer game.

Early adopter and we should "accept" launch issues is just BS. I shouldn't have to accept anything for a singleplayer game. I was going to make a metaphor but I suppose it wouldn't help.

Their loss!

Edited by SymLinked
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the naive bit about your statement is the fact that there are many reasons one might not have internet access, or access to the games servers, but still want to play the game they have legally purchased.

I am aware, which is why I agreed with you in my previous posts.
 

>Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against semi-regular 'check-ins' on a resonable basis

Just on this, to my knowledge this is how it works now. You need to be online to log in, then you need to be online to accept trade from the world market or switch cities I think. I haven't lost connection during a game, but I've seen coworkers lose connection and continue playing.

It would be cool if you could store regions locally just so you could switch cities and do regional trade though.

 

If you remain offline long enough, you get kicked.

You can have data corruption due to exiting after playing while offline. I became out of sync, and then EA decided to overwrite part of my data later when their system detected something was weird.

You can't play if the servers aren't up to log in

You can't play if you have no internet access on which to log in at the time.

 

I have used lots of software with 'phone-home' security functions, and generally I can go a week or more without being impacted by my lack of a connection.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don’t understand why companies like EA continue to use these draconian DRM schemes that just drive away potential customers. The game will be pirated, all the DRM does is slow down the pirates in the short term, and make piracy even more appealing in the long run because people won’t be stopped from playing a pirated version if they have a bad internet connection or when EA’s servers are down.

 

There’s a definite trend of attempting to fight piracy by turning games into an always online service that the customer pays for the privilege of using, rather than a product that he actually owns. (although being a "service" makes you wonder why people will pay for a service that doesn’t even work) In a singleplayer game, this is completely unacceptable and customers ought to boycott any game that does it. Another big problem, even besides not being able to play is the potential side effects these anti-piracy measures are having on gameplay. Are the very small map sizes and pseudo-multiplayer “social” elements there because of the DRM’s limitations, because if they are I would argue that the core gamplay is suffering because of it. Even without the always online DRM, I still wouldn’t have bought the game because of what I consider to be its “dumbed down” gameplay.

 

It’s also concerning, but not unexpected that EA would have several packs of day 1 DLC, which really should have been included in the actual game.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s also concerning, but not unexpected that EA would have several packs of day 1 DLC, which really should have been included in the actual game.

This one always makes me laugh.

 

 

For some reason if a company sells DLC on opening day many customers feel it is their divinely ordained right that it should have been included in the base price.

 

The extra DLC is the superheros and supervillans stuff.

 

SimCity has never had that kind of component.  I've logged about 10 hours of gameplay on it so far and the game feels complete without any superhero stuff.  I can imagine it may make life easier in the event of a disaster.  Maybe if I took one of the opportunities like the fireworks display or the block party the superhero would help clean up the mess?

 

It is upselling, nothing more or less than that.

 

DLC is not usually important stuff they left out.  Usually it is fun bits of content that can be added to an already complete game experience.

 

Again, this is absolutely not unique to games.  "Would you like fries and a drink with that?", "Would you like that in the Extra Jumbo size?" "Would you like the disc with bonus features and deleted scenes?".

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem comes from the mass which doesn't care about the industry and buys products even if they have crappy "features" like that, and also from players which think "you have to adapt/follow".

 

It's bad to think this way, because producers can do whatever they want, screw everything and it will still become "the standard" just like little DLC.

 

Don't get me wrong : DLC are not bad in themselves. But nowadays they are quite a lot of games with little ( and expensive DLC ). For example DmC has now 3 DLC and 1 which add a new character : Vergil. And I want to precise that Devil May Cry 3, you had an extra character if you finish the game. Yes it's also Vergil and that was free. And if this type of things happens, it's precisely because crappy DLC work and so why producer shouldn't do them to earn more money ?

 

(I had also to precise that there is a free DLC for DmC which is the Bloody Palace, but it was also available and free in Devil May Cry 3 so ....)

 

 

That's remind me the fact that EA want to make micro transactions available for every game, and the problem will be the same : if it will work (and it will work if everyone thinks this way) micro transaction will part of more and more games for a long time just like little DLC and internet connection.

Edited by Rakilonn
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s also concerning, but not unexpected that EA would have several packs of day 1 DLC, which really should have been included in the actual game.

This one always makes me laugh.

 

 

For some reason if a company sells DLC on opening day many customers feel it is their divinely ordained right that it should have been included in the base price.

 

The extra DLC is the superheros and supervillans stuff.

 

SimCity has never had that kind of component.  I've logged about 10 hours of gameplay on it so far and the game feels complete without any superhero stuff.  I can imagine it may make life easier in the event of a disaster.  Maybe if I took one of the opportunities like the fireworks display or the block party the superhero would help clean up the mess?

 

It is upselling, nothing more or less than that.

 

DLC is not usually important stuff they left out.  Usually it is fun bits of content that can be added to an already complete game experience.

 

Again, this is absolutely not unique to games.  "Would you like fries and a drink with that?", "Would you like that in the Extra Jumbo size?" "Would you like the disc with bonus features and deleted scenes?".

Also there's a unique park which apparently provides actual bonuses to your city, as well as the British, French, and German skins for buildings, and these types of multiple skins used to be included for free in Sim City games, along with editors for making your own building skins. The problem with day one DLC is that the publisher is removing content from the original game and requiring an additional purchase to unlock it. If you don't care about the extra stuff that's fine, but the people who do want it now have to pay much more than it's worth because it is DLC and not built into the normal price. Additionally, selling content DLC like this is undoubtedly one of the main reasons why there is no modding support in the new Sim City, again a strong argument about why this kind of DLC is bad for the consumer.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ugh, let's not have this devolve into another DLC thread. Before moving on I'll mention that if the game isn't working properly on release day then there is not much justification for having spent time creating DLC available at launch rather than, you know, having the game function.

 

Back on topic, I can't stand a requirement that I be online to play a single-player game. It adds no benefits to me as a player (I don't care about having achievements in an online showcase to show off to others), introduces a lot of potential problems (as have been noted above), and adds ongoing maintenance costs to the game which divert sales revenues away from actual game development.

 

There's something to be said for a connection requirement for DRM, but one of the most consistent things I hear about this is that DRM is that it protects sales during a crucial, brief post-release period (I hear around two weeks). With such a short period, every day's delay or postponed/ruined play session due to server side problems or anything else beyond the game-buyer's control become far less excusable: the publisher protects sales income by deploying a less than functional product to consumers who are following the rules. No one really knows how many sales are lost to piracy anyhow, but EA has lost yet another sale to me as a direct result of this scheme.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And this is the trend developers are pushing for? To piss me off enough that I declare to hell with their product, and have called up a friend to see if she and her roommate wants to play Carcassonne The City with me?

 

Just Electronic Arts.  There used to be a game developer called "Hasboro Interactive" and we boycotted them and now they are gone.

Edited by Shannon Barber
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's good because it's a great time to be in board games. Between a general increase in quality and kickstarter making a crap load of board games viable it's quite honestly one of the best times to be in board games since I've been playing them.

For anyone interested in getting into them, Tabletop is a great web series that will give you good overviews of board games that might interest you.

Haha... I was going to post it here too.

 

About the DRM discussion.... It is quite frustating I know, but there is always one hacker group that will break our software.

Those big corporations know that and they should have learned by now that making the DRM Wall wider and taller doesn't work.

They are blocking the legitimate customers and letting pirates go through.

 

This is not recent though. Even owning games like Diablo2 and AgeOfEmpires2, I had to download a crack version to play with NoCD.

More than a decade has passed, technology evolved a bunch and still: Diablo3 was cracked (even before release); Max Payne 3 was cracked; SimCity will be cracked.

Edited by kuramayoko10
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Amazon has pulled the physical copies from their store. Undoubtedly they want to avoid the hassle of having their return policy being used massively. This has turned out to be quite a disaster. Some speculate that EA has become the current mess that it is under the present leadership of Gibeau and Riccitello.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0