Welcome to a new edition of GameCop vs LameCop vs PsychoCop. It’s about time, huh?
If you’re unfamiliar with this feature, we discuss gaming issues and we switch roles each time. The GameCop has your best interests as gamers at heart, while the LameCop is just what he sounds like: kind of a lamewad. Meanwhile, PsychoCop is a crazed, complete troll of a dude.
In this week’s edition, we have a fair and reasonable debate about Activision and Infinity Ward, Assassin’s Creed II DRM and the statute of limitations on video game spoilers.
With the recent crop of storytelling games, spoilers are starting to become a bigger issue in video games. When is it OK to lift the veil off and talk openly about the ending of games?
The issue of spoilers is especially complicated when it comes to video games, especially with all of these recent titles coming out that focus on plot over or just as much as gameplay. While one doesn’t have to worry about spoilers in say God of War III (as Penny Arcade puts it: he kills everything, the end), you do have to be careful about the end of Mass Effect 2, Uncharted 2, who the Origami Killer is in Heavy Rain and what is the fate of the l’cie in Final Fantasy 13.
I honestly have no idea what the answer is here. For a movie, it’s easy to lift the statute of limitations off of spoilers because a movie can be knocked out in just one sitting, whereas games often take people a week or more to finish. It’s OK for us to talk about the death of Aeris in FF7, because enough time has passed. When will it be OK for us to talk about the Origami Killer? Personally, I think 6 months to a year is enough time to start openly discussing these things in games. I feel that if someone truly cares about a game’s story, it is up to them to knock it out as quickly as possible, before the discussion moves on without them.
AHH! Aeris dies? You didn’t say SPOILER ALERT!
This is a typical response from someone who has time to play video games. Hey, some us have meth labs to run, okay? I don’t always have time to trundle down to the game store, buy the newest crap and finish it in time to play next week’s crap.
Spoilers are spoilers because they SPOIL the enjoyment for people. I was originally in favor of lifting spoilers when the sequel comes out, but not every game gets a sequel. Then, I thought “Ten years ought to do it.” But with PSN, Virtual Console and XBLA, that doesn’t work either. So I say never lift spoilers. Because a game spoiled is soiled. Or something. SAMUS IS A GIRL!
Spoilers are nothing to a body that is host to Chronok the Time-Shaper! With this powerful deity possessing every fibre of my being, I can travel to any time period I wish, be it past or future! Watch now as I rend the very fabrics of reality to bring you spoilers from the year 2013!
Star Craft II still has not been completed, but rumors are abound that Jim Raynor and Kerrigan marry and produce a race of super babies to combat the Proto’Naga! In Mass Effect 3, Saren comes back from the dead and reveals that he is your father! Diablo 3 end with Master Chief kicking Mephisto in the junk! Plus we have jet packs, but only women can use them! 2012 was a bad year for men.
People are up in arms about Ubisoft’s new DRM scheme for Assassin’s Creed II that requires the user to be connected to the Internet to play the game. Fair/foul?
To tell you the truth, I would hate to be Ubisoft right now. Piracy is a huge problem in the game industry, and Ubi went straight for the most authoritarian of the possible solutions. This is one that not only encourages people who are inclined to pirate to do so, but also prevents paying customers from accessing their games when the server goes down. I have also heard of problems where authentication issues have arisen, stopping people from playing the games too.
One way or another, publishers need to combat piracy, and Ubisoft took a wild shot in the dark to try and curb this problem. Unfortunately, this has backfired completely, and Ubisoft’s own servers are under constant attack by hackers. I believe that companies have a right to protect their product, but this is going too far. On the other hand, if people wouldn’t pirate, this situation would have never come up. Until Ubisoft institutes a new DRM measure, this is a no-win scenario.
Are you kidding me, Mitch? Piracy and DRM is a black and white issue, and always has been. People deserve to have whatever they want, when they want it. I don’t feel like paying for it, but I also want to play it. How can there possibly be a win-win scenario that way?
Ubisoft needs to realize that it will always lose to pirates, so just let me have their game for free. It’s inevitable, so why even bother? I get that companies want to protect their IP, but in all honesty, it’s probably hurting their IP that I’m not getting to play it for free and tell everyone how awesome it is. Get with the program!
Both of you are playing right into the Templar’s hands! I have been using a modified version of the Animus that I constructed using a tube sock, a crock pot and a Virtual Boy and what I have found has been shocking: It turns out that everything in the game is real and the DRM is the Templar’s method of preventing the truth from being exposed!
They weren’t able to block it completely this time, but my ancestor, Tony Montana, was an Assassin and I have been going through his life using my genetic memories and he revealed to me that the DRM for Assassin’s Creed 3 is going to require a blood sample, an old CompuServe email account and one full page of either the U.S. Constitution or any cast member of the Jersey’s Shore high school diploma. I’ve already got my page!
For the last two weeks, we’ve been hearing lots about ActivionGate, in which Activision has let go of two of the heads of Infinity Ward. What are your guys thoughts on this?
It’s difficult to take sides without knowing all the facts, though my first inclination, like everyone else’s, is that Activision is an evil, greedy corporation that rewards hard work with a boot in the ass.
Which, after the announcement that multiple developers will be working on new Call of Duty games, some of which aren’t even FPS’s, seems to be the right reaction. Infinity Ward made a high-quality product and Activision made a lot of money off it. They seem determined to nuke the golden goose, at the expense of quality. Honestly, I just want to see Infinity Ward finish the story they started. I don’t plan on buying any Call of Duty game that doesn’t have the words, “Modern Warfare” in them.
I have bought every Call of Duty, even the ones by Treyarch which are the superior games in my opinion. Honestly, the guys from Infinity Ward got way too greedy, what with taking credit for creating Call of Duty and turning it into the mega franchise it is. Bobby Kotick was right to stamp down on IW and withhold their royalties to prevent the rest of the company from quitting in protest. Honestly, if Microsoft had done this to Bungie, we would be getting more Halo 3 map packs because those sell super well.
The more creative freedoms a developer has, the less inclined they are to make over-priced map packs to squeeze a bit more out of a game’s sales. I hate mapathy! Kotick 4 life!
Guys, you know what this means, right? You know what this means! We all know what this means! I think the possibility that makes the most sense here is that Activision wanted Infinity Ward to combine two of their biggest franchises into one super awesome powerhouse of a game. Are you ready for it?
Modern World of WarfareCraft.
Think about it. You cold run around as SoapMcWarlock, sniping dudes with your mana rifle and calling down killstreaks such as the Lich King, an epic flying mount or an army of the undead. Screw Infinity Ward for refusing to make this awesome amalgamation of an epic franchise that would crush the competition each and every year. If Modern Warfare was Hercules, Modern World of WarfareCraft is the Zeus. I’m pre-ordering this now!
So, there you have it for the newest edition of GameCop vs LameCop vs PsychoCop. Thoughts? Go!