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Comment Re:Software patch might overcome this patent (Score 2) 211

So if Form 1 software is tweaked not to do this, then it would not infringe. At the same time, by the filing of the lawsuit, 3D Systems may have done irreperable harm to Form 1. Counter suit anyone?

You are suggesting that they remove the part that they are being sued for, which pretty much indicates that the plaintiff was correct. Then they countersue because the plaintiff's totally valid patent suit did them irreparable harm? Sounds foolproof!

Comment Re:Absolutely amazed by this decision (Score 1) 385

You couldn't afford $5 or $10? How cheap were these used games??

What's wrong with Steam? Just that it's basically a rental instead of a purchase? That's pretty much how I consider it. I concede that Steam doesn't really "sell" games. They can take my whole library away at a whim. And maybe like twice a year (gaming every day), Steam won't load because of interent problems or whatever.

But the thing is, I only paid a few bucks for each game. That seems a fair compromise to me.

Comment Re:Absolutely amazed by this decision (Score 1) 385

Valve is in a great position regarding this. You can already gift games to other players; They just need to enable gifting of currently owned games and Bob's your mother's brother. Hell, it may occur that Steam gets more subscribers as games are gifted to people who aren't currently subscribed. Licenses held in escrow until someone creates an account to redeem them? PayPal does that with money already.

This will never happen. If Valve suddenly let everyone trade games, it would have a terrible effect on sales.

Trading physical objects is a bit of pain. Trading Steam games will make it super easy for complete strangers to swap games quickly. It'll take like 24 hours for a gigantic "lending library" to appear. With my huge library of games, I'd have little problem getting anything I want in the future by trading. I guess that'd be awesome?

Well, no, it wouldn't. I actually like giving the developers of a game some money. I don't like giving them $60 for 6 hours of gameplay though. But Valve has already solved this problem. You can get AAA games for less than $10 easily through their sales.

Everyone wins in the current system. You can get games cheaply and the developers get paid. The lack of trading is completely mitigated by the huge drop in price on games in the last 10 years. A law/judgement allowing free trading will absolutely destroy what has pretty much been a new Golden Age for PC gaming.

Also, if that happened, it would guarentee that all future games will be tied to online servers, which is something I really hate.

Comment Re:If they kill the used game market, (Score 1) 351

Oh yeah, also, historically speaking, we're paying much less for a new game than we used to be. Ditto consoles.

That's nice, but it really doesn't have anything to do with it. Why do I care what I paid for games in the past? What I care about now is how much money I have to spare on entertainment now, and comparing how much a gaming costs versus some other entertainment.

For me, gaming is fantastic because, at least on PC, it's so extremely cheap. They definitely aren't going to pull in any PC gamers if they find a way to keep the prices in the $60 range for longer.

It doesn't matter how much it cost in the past or how much it cost to make. The only thing that matters is what people are willing to pay for it now.

Comment Re:Oh the hyperbole ... (Score 1) 351

I'm not so poor that paying $10 to see a movie I'm excited about is a problem, nor am I so poor or easily amused that I value my entertainment at $1 an hour.

I could pay $1/hour for my entertainment, but since I have the option not to, I don't. I actually keep a detailed spreadsheet, so I know that I actually pay about $.30/hour overall (for games).

I've never bought a game at $60, but I'm primarily a PC gamer. I paid $40 for Skyrim, but spent 120 hours on it so far. Several indie games cost less than $10 but I've got insane hours out of (Minecraft, Dwarf Fortress*, A Valley Without Wind, Crusader Kings, etc.).

And I don't feel like I'm hurting the developers; I'm supporting them! I spent like $300+ on games last year. I really don't see how $60 is needed even for a AAA game when you can get huge numbers of sales at $20.

Anyway, the reason people don't want to pay $60 is that the market is moving away from that. That doesn't mean you only get $1/$5 crappy iOS games. You get a wide range of games at a good price and everyone wins. *I gave Tarn Adams $30 for DF last year, and will probably give more this year.

Comment Re:Worked for the PC game market (Score 1) 351

Unfortunately, the consumer suffers. But what's new, huh?

How has the consumer sufferred under Steam?

Before Steam, even like 20 years ago, my "price point" for a game was around $20. I knew that once the price (used or new) dropped below that, I had a window to grab the game before it dissapeared from the store.

My price point is now well under $10 for a AAA game. Go on a PC gaming website forum like RockPaperShotgun and ask how many games people have. You'll see a thread filled with, "More than I have time to play." Steam has streamlined the whole process and delivered huge price cuts on all levels of gaming (indie to AAA). Steam also has some great competition from GOG, Gamersgate, even GameStop Downloads, so they're not a monopoly either.

As long as the developers play along, I only have to worry about Steam's DRM. I'd prefer none, but Steam's not bad. I can install my games on whichever computer I want.

Sure, I can't sell my old games, but I really don't care. I really don't want to bother trying to get $1 on a trade-in for a game I spent $5 on. I wouldn't buy used with prices like that either. I really don't mind directly supporting the game makers, especially since I buy so much indie stuff.

Comment Re:hardware limits (Score 1) 309

And you were somehow able to get these games of "baseball" started within minutes of getting home every day?

Nothing about using an XBox stops someone from managing to get everyone together to play ball, but it does make it really easy to quickly get together with absolutely no effort. How is that bad?

Comment Sims 3 aka My Pet Fireman (Score 2, Funny) 397

I've been playing the Sims 3, which has been out for quite awhile now. There are several expansion packs for it. It is an extremely popular PC franchise with a large rabid community. Despite all that, the game is still buggy.

My first playthrough featured a loss of two hours when I hit "Error Code 16". Basically you can't save your game. Game save bugs are amongst the worst types of bugs.

I have a pet fireman. One of my Sims wanted to "be in a fire". So I had him start grilling some hot dogs and then sit down nearby to play some chess. Cue fire and ridiculous Sims jumping around. The Fireman shows up in a little red firepickuptruck and puts out the fire. Then he stands there. You can't interact with him. I thought he was stuck on the grill that burned, but I moved that out of the way. Even once in awhile he will stumble and look sheepish.

One day while a Sim was watching TV I randomly clicked on the fireman. "Join: Watch TV" was there! I clicked and the fireman moved! Hooray! Problem solved. Except now he is permanently on my couch. That was worse, so I used the same technique to move him back out to the lawn. You can't talk to him, but he will join you in activities.

Having a pet fireman is fine. There's always a chess opponent nearby. He never seems to get hungry/dirty. However, his truck is a problem. First, the garish light is always on. Luckily, no sounds. The big problem is that it blocks the street. Any time a car comes to pick someone up they park really far away.

Anyway, you'd think they'd fix this stuff after several expansions. Actually, the Word Adventures expansion apparently created the "Error Code 16" problem, even for players who didn't buy the expansion.

Comment Re:I think gamer interest largely drove the shift (Score 1) 362

Starcraft wasn't a success because of its single-player missions, the new single-player missions weren't what sold most copies of the Starcraft: Brood War expansion.

That's not necesarily true. You might find this interesting. I think it is quite possible that less than half of people who bought Starcraft (ie, gave Blizzard money) actually played the multiplayer (at least within the first few years of it's release). Of course the multiplayer is what kept the game alive for so long, especially in Korea. I imagine a good RTS like Company of Heroes has a similar number of single players as Demigod did (only 23% even attempted it).

People assume that FPSs and RTSs are mostly played for the multiplayer, but this really isn't true. I think the average PC gamer will run from Starcraft II multiplayer. The campaign is definitely something that consumers are interested in. If you don't want to invest a lot of time, SCII multiplayer is going to be pretty scary. Who wants to spend hours every night getting pounded on by SC veterans? OTOH, how about having some fun pounding on on the PC player?

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