July 18th, 2009

I am so glad that these Civony/Evony people are finally getting called out. Their shady ads featuring stolen art assets are everywhere. I can only hope they haven’t tricked many people into playing, but I know that mammary glands are powerful things.

This is a big one, and I will admit that I skimmed a bit, but there’s some interesting stuff here. Particularly, the acknowledgment that the general perception of the PC gaming market’s health is largely due to a lack of marketing and representation; that’s interesting coming from a PC manufacturer, not to mention a founder of the PC Gaming Alliance. Next up: much respect to Chris Remo for not letting the comment about $1,500 – $2,500 being what somebody needs to spend on a gaming PC slip by. The notion that a person needs to spend more than $700 to play any game is one that is hurting the platform. Finally, I very much like the idea of Steam being pre-installed on Dell and Alienware systems. I’m no fan of crapware, but if they’re injecting new machines with a bunch of it anyway, they may as well throw in something great like Steam.

This just tickled me.

July 16th, 2009

The PC is treated as a second-rate game platform. This is evidenced most strongly both by game publishers’ treatment of the PC versions of their multi-platform games as well as how the games press covers PC games whether they be multi-platform or exclusive. For roughly the last six years the PC has been perceived as being a dying platform. While some players have definitely shifted from PC to video game consoles during this same time frame, things aren’t that bad; the PC platform’s biggest problem is still the perception that gamers, game makers, and game journalists have of it. This problem, left to fester, has begun to have distinct effects on the way PC games are treated.

Publishers, when they even make a PC version of their game, don’t treat it as well as they do the console versions. Development of the PC version of multi-platform games is often outsourced to a third party, and the quality of the product suffers as a result. But it isn’t always a problem of outsourcing; sometimes developers are simply told to focus their foremost efforts on the console versions. Marketing of the PC version also takes a hit; it is not uncommon for the PC version of a game to be released weeks to months after the console versions. Rarely will the PC version even be mentioned in magazine and comic book ads, much less television adverts; it will just be tossed out and left up to word of mouth and the virtually non-existent retail spaces to sell it to people.
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