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Comment: Re:Let it out as open source - DONT let it die (Score 2, Informative) 162

by Manic Panic (#27028111) Attached to: <em>Tabula Rasa</em> Going Out With A Bang

While not entirely LEGAL per se [ok, more, not at all legal] if you google "private Ragnarok Online server" you'll find a few top 100 sites. Several of these servers do manage a decent up rate considering they aren't backed by a huge company.

Its open source atleast in the software they use to make the games run on their own server..

Comment: Re:AKA (Score 1) 354

by Manic Panic (#26188503) Attached to: EA Is Now Officially On Steam, <em>Spore</em> Loses SecuROM

I'd actually sent Valve this exact question.

more specifically I asked them:
{
What happens if the Steam servers and services are no longer available [for example, you shut them down for business]

What happens to the games I have purchased and my ability to play them? Will they cease to be playable? All the games I own and play on the PC are on steam, and should this ever happen [say, 20 years down the line, I decide I want to boot up Dawn of War 2 or Portal and play it]
}
their answer was:
{
Hello

Thank you for contacting Steam Support.

Should such an event occur, we will provide all necessary information at that time.
}

So... yeah. Fun times.

Comment: Re:netcraft confirms it: (Score 2, Interesting) 81

by Manic Panic (#26157875) Attached to: Video Game Trends In 2008

Another problem with a shift to the console that's been getting a lot of press lately is the issue of used game sales.

While the problem of intrusive and or disruptive DRMs leaves players when they shift to the console, developers are being forced to take greater notice of the fact that consoles see a LOT of used game sales, which sees no profit what so ever going to them. Its never been uncommon for people to just wait for a game to go onto the used rack and get it rather than get it new. [it just requires some patience and they get it cheaper, and don't miss any content either way]

Another facet of the console is that you can rent games quite cheaply. Granted, I think this isn't as big a loss to developers as a license of sorts must be purchased to rent the games out, costing a good deal more than the game normally would). This does however, have the impact of letting people try before they buy, giving more than any demo could hope to.

With the tendency of games now to provide short play times while continuing to cost quite alot, these games see a higher turn around, going back onto the used games racks quicker and quicker after release, sold by gamers in order to recoup some of the cost of that game (perhaps to buy a game that hopefully lasts longer than a day or so). Whereas, on the PC, finding used games is rare and generally done between gamers rather than a game store (and non-existent if you consider buying online from sources such as Steam, while seeing an increase in profits when you cut shipping and packaging costs for the distributor)

The idea of having a one use download for the original purchaser, such as the map pack for gears of war, is just one way developers are trying to fight off the growing used games business. A better sounding solution though, is if someone plans to make a game, they work on ensuring the game can be played for more than a day or two. This would naturally see a longer time before games start hitting that used rack. Whether this is through replay-ability, length of story, online content, unending/sandbox content, or episodic content. Perhaps even a mix of the above.

Using quick solutions like a secuROM or forcing people to buy new by restricting the extended content to a one shot code will just upset people. Unless you go out and make sure everyone knows that if they don't buy your game new (it ought to be fun trying to spin something like that into something positive), they won't get all the content, people are going to buy your game used and get pretty upset when they find their missing their final boss or other half of the story. Their intent to buy used anyways may have been a loss to your profits overall, but the next time you put out a game, they won't want it used or new based on the last experience with your companies product.

Comment: Re:netcraft confirms it: (Score 1) 81

by Manic Panic (#26157629) Attached to: Video Game Trends In 2008

Well, one of the issues with the same hardware argument is that, if there is buggy hardware, and everyone gets it, you get for example, what we had with the red ring of death plague a few years back.

With PCs and Laptops you have something that at least helps mitigate possibly crippling quality issues. Where as with an Xbox360, generally, it was made under one brand. If that console has some technical or quality issue, well, everyone was getting it. With say, a pre-built laptop or desktop, you could mitigate the chances of widespread hardware failures because if you got it from Dell, HP, Toshiba or what ever brand you prefer, chances are they aren't getting their parts from the same sources.

A PC you build at home gives you an even better chance of avoiding this issue since you can look for a good quality component based on past experience. Unfortunately [because I'm gonna hit the Xbox again since its so easy] if something was buggy in the Xbox 360, you either simply did not get the Xbox 360, risked the red ring of death, or waited until they released a fixed version. [Which apparently has been truly addressed in the Arcade version, getting a new motherboard among other things]

If we could say, purchase a particular kind of console from a wider variety of brands, then this would not be an issue, but its unfortunately still controlled by a single source of production.

As far as keeping a laptop on hand, if we're going to count them then I should say I have three screens, as I keep my laptop next to my desktop when I'm at home. Granted, I don't get to sit in a couch, but that's mostly because of how small my room is unfortunately. (if an Xbox 360 came with a bigger room I would definitely be all over that however :) .)

Comment: Re:netcraft confirms it: (Score 2, Interesting) 81

by Manic Panic (#26156937) Attached to: Video Game Trends In 2008

About all I know for my part is, as long as I am working on a PC, use a PC and have a PC in my house, I will want a game to play on it.

Plus, consoles such as the Xbox 360 continues to lack a straightforward way to upgrade its graphics card, processor, memory, and run two screens with a browser on one side, and a game on the other. (I like to read while I respawn, what can I say?)

And once you can do all those things, why not just call it a computer that hooks up to your TV and uses a controller instead of mouse and keyboard as its standard input device...?
Because really, I'm seeing less and less difference between a PC and a Console with every new generation that comes out.

Even the Wii with its unique controller isn't so strange, which is really more a wireless mouse with an accelerometer and a few more buttons than usual.

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