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buffer-overflowed's Journal: Games - Hey there 9

Journal by buffer-overflowed

Preface to this: I've have yet to be wrong about anything regarding video games. Even going into the N64 I had bad feelings(back when FFVII was displayed on the "project reality" even), I bought it anyway, and in retrospect it didn't disappoint, but at the time, man, yea it really did disappoint.

The next generation. Sony is dead. They're irrelevant. They'll sell consoles to their die hard idiot fanboys and that's about it. Those people will in turn be burnt, hard, and learn the lesson of SEGA and the lesson of the N64. Past success with 3rd parties does not guarantee future success with third parties. This is not to mention the incoming lawsuit that they'll lose in regards to the motion-sensing functionality. Which they failed to license from any of the parties that have patents on it(Logitech, Thomson, Nintendo, Microsoft to name 4). Just like rumble, they'll lose.

This E3 keeps reminding me, over and over again of the N64 launch. I bought the N64 because of the SNES. I didn't buy the saturn because SEGA had an allergy to money and a need to keep putting out half-supported addons, but I digress. The playstation came along and took away all the 3rd party titles. Why?

It was cheaper. Business, pure and simple.

I still remember the analyst predictions that Sony would fail because they had no first party development. They were right, but they were a few years off. First and 2nd party development has been what has kept Nintendo alive in the console sphere. It's what's made them a profit year after year, quarter after quarter(bar one). Sony can't survive like that. They mainly make knock-offs. Buying a Playstation for it's first party titles is like buying a Sorny instead of a Sony WEGA in 1995. You do it because it's cheap and almost as good.

This next generation, it sure ain't cheap. HDTVs are expensive. The consoles(apart from Nintendo's we presume) are expensive. The games are more expensive. The cost of HD gaming goes up to nigh-PC levels. And we're talking buying a brand new video card when it first comes out levels here. I know of a few psychos who do so, but that's no where near mainstream. I can live w/o the extra 30 specks of blood coming out of the guys back when I shoot him in the chest for a few years to save $300.

But wait... I can write off PC upgrades on my taxes and get the most for them. I know of many companies that'll reimburse you for PC expendatures, like colleges, once every few years. A PC these days can be effectively free. Worst case, you can get up to 30% off(effectively, via adjustment) if you have a quasi-shady accountant(AKA a KICK-ASS accountant) and work in a field somewhat related to computing. So, what's the freakin' advantage performance-wise if it's not cheap!?

But I digress, massively.

The point of this was to gather the legion. And we are legion. We saw the trailer for the fuckin' Wizard and went to see it because it showed previews of the third game in a series. I recently saw the trailer to Super Smash Brothers Brawl and it was not only better than some of the sex I've had, the afterglow lasted far longer. You think I'm joking, I'm not.

This E3 has been like an ex-smoker taking the habit up again. An instant rush of memories and endorphins. Every time I've enjoyed a game over the years with friends, all of those moments, all came rushing back to me. Nintendo always "wins" E3, but they haven't had me this hopped up since the 80s.

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Games - Hey there

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  • I'd read about the history [wikipedia.org] of the n64 before, but never from wikipedia until two days ago. Assuming it's correct, I'm surprised to learn how hard it was to program for in several respects.

    The lesson of SEGA you're trying to apply to Sony isn't comparable though. Sega burned developers twice with the 32X and Saturn. The Dreamcast was an awesome machine, but at that point most developers were quite satisfied to make large ROI with the PSX and PS2. The PS3 is hard to develop for, but I don't think it's Sat
    • It's not just the lesson of SEGA, it's the lesson of the N64.

      If your competition makes the 3rd parties more profit, they will defect. That's why the PSP is dying and will die, and that's why the PS3 will die.

      You are godly game developer Z. I approach you with a deal to develop for platform X. It'll cost you $Y million, you'll need to sell Z hundreds of thousands of units to break even. In the case of the PSP you won't. They haven't had a million selling title yet, hence the rapid ports of "killer title
      • I am godly game developer Z. If I can make my game for both the PS3 and 360 and make more profit than if I'd only done one console, that's what I'll do. Porting doesn't cost as much so I need to sell fewer boxes on the second platform. Additionally, if there happens to be a lack of games on the smaller platform, (n64, gamecube, dreamcast) consumer demand for my game will increase and I'll sell more boxes.

        Unless of course Sony or MS has given me incentives to not develop for their rival.

        About the $600, I'
      • The $600 price tag is largly due to the Blu-Ray DVD. Early street reports have standalone Blu-Ray players starting at $1200. Sony's going to eat a loss on these puppies to get their technology out there. I've been arguing this over on my car forums for months now with all the M$ fanboys.

        The 360 offers me nothing right now. I'm past the FPS stage of my life. I enjoy in depth RPG's like Final Fantasy (which is supposed to be ported to the 360, but no one knows for sure yet). I enjoy great racing titles
        • Blu-ray is a format with nothing out for it yet, and I've yet to be convinced that I need an upgrade over DVD-9, much less that particular competing format. It looks a little better, so what? DVD offered numerous advantages over VHS, extras, no degradation, no rewinding, and a higher quality output. I updated my movie collection mainly because it wouldn't degrade and I never had to rewind. All HD-DVD and Blu-ray offer over DVD is a higher resolution output and DRM.

          I'm not alone in this.

          So tacking in a blu-r
  • Their apathy to 3rd party-only development for the gamecube and all else is staggering. Really... do we need to have a Mario-flavored version of every 3rd party hit out there (e.g. the GC DDR)? The business model they seem to have acquired is that of trying to be gaming's Pixar. The problem is that Pixar is a movie company and not a gaming one. Pixar makes a few things and then can leverage the shit out of them, because that's the way the movie industry is horizontally integrated (with DVDs and video ga
    • While self-inflicted gunshot to the head sounds better, Sega actually kept shooting itself in the feet with various sized bullets. Looked like bloody swiss cheese by 1999. The 32X was a favorite project of some dumbass executive at Sega Of Japan who forced it's completion. Sega Of America meanwhile repeatedly refused to import some the best games available for the Saturn. Those are the biggest mistakes I'd say.

      Alternatively, Sega's biggest blunder could be designing the Genesis so it could only do a max
    • I wouldn't call it apathy, they're just pretty much opposed to paying for exclusive content. They tend more towards giving development and creative resources to 3rd parties they partner with, even going so far as allowing their branded characters to make cameos in games and sending Miyamoto out to talk with a design team and offer his input. It's not the best model for exclusives, but it seems to be turning things around a bit in this next-generation.

      But its like an old-timers club with a closed membershi
      • *don't mind me if this doesn't make any sense. I'm just back from drinking in Ballmer and it's late*

        I think aesthetic had a lot to do with the GC not being picked up too: it looked like a kid's toy. Not futuristic, not Ikea-esque but like something only a child would have. And that hurt. Like a lot of UI, it only really hurts you when it sticks out. Sure, the Xbox looked retarded but it was just like an Alienware box flipped on its side. Not too hard to ignore. But the GC with the little discs and t

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