Not Greedy, Just Clueless

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zinho73:
His point has nothing to do with the drive to make money. The point is that Valve is much more interested in doing it without alienating their costumer base. I think it is a valid consideration.

And, essentially, do it with part of that "non-alienation" factoring in what the microtransactions provide: Absolutely no competitive or play-affecting advantage.

hellsop:

hentropy:
You don't get it. Businesses never do badly because of business practices, it's ALWAYS external factors. Like PIRACY and USED GAMES. This is the reason why EA is doing badly. PIRACY and USED GAMES. Until Congress kills torrents and Gamestop we're going to keep losing money. Steam does well because they came first and have trendy marketing. It just means we have to spend more money on marketers and time machines.

OTOH, Steam also kills PIRACY and USED GAMES... Or mostly, which is no worse than EA's services are likely to do.

There is no such thing as a used game on the modern PC market and Steam does nothing to combat piracy itself.

This article was extremely refreshing! Well-done, Shamus!
Certainly much better than hearing Jim lob ALL OF THE profanities at EA, which does get tiresome after the 3546135315546th time.

Shamus Young:

There's nothing wrong with Electronic Arts wanting to make money, it's the way they're trying to do it that's the problem.

The way they're doing it is still kind of greedy. It even seems to border on malice at points. I'm not sure if I buy into the "clueless" argument.

I'm also not entirely sure the McDonalds analogy works. When it comes to food, we pay for conveniences all the time. Dead Space 3 was all about convenience, with upgrades being purchasable in game with no money. Paying for delivery of a meal is a pretty common practice. Paying to get something faster is pretty standard. It's hard not to see other microtransactions as analogous to the sort of thing that a chain might sell you at the end, combo meal or otherwise.

Valve is less a combo meal and more one of those discount warehouses. Valve's model is more that of Wal-Mart, actually.

Also, while I'm hesitant to pull the "haters gonna hate" defense, EA gets a lot of crap for doing things exactly like everyone else. Now, part of that may be because of beloved despots like Gabe Newell (pbuh), but the fact is people didn't even complain when EA did the same thing with Mass Effect 3's multiplayer. And there's a lot of microtransactions that date back quite a ways. I can't even remember the first time I saw a "time saver" pack, but it dates back to the beginning of the generation.

Is it an issue that Warner Brothers does this? Activision? Was it a problem that THQ did it? It's not just EA v Valve. It's basically Valve v EA as the figurehead for all the wrongs of the collective. Loathe as I am to say anything that comes off as defending EA (especially since this would more be "two wrongs make a right," something I also don't endorse), I don't think EA's problem has anything to do with their competence.

Except, perhaps, their competence at PR. Newell's monopoly comes with an almost cuddly dictator and the likely false appeal of customer consideration, and other companies seem happy to do what EA does as EA does it and let EA be the lightning rod.

I, for one, have no problem with companies making money. Even a lot. EA's practices, which are really the big publishers' practices as a whole, do come off as greedy and even borderline malicious. These are not haphazard approach, but the sort of thing gaming has been coldly calculating since before video games were even a thing.

I do love me some shamus.

However, sir, you have made a grave mistake in your article.

People don't just love steam. People want to have sex with it. Its an apple-level of fanaticisim that is emerging.

I agree with your argument, it is definitely (also) about that.

But as always I have to take issue for comparing an entertainment industry product with comestible goods like food, because the two don't compare in many ways.
You should compare an entertainment industry product with other entertainment industry products like books, music or movies at least.

And NONE of these industries have as egregious practices as the gaming industry does. None of them could even measure up to the level of DRM and possible inconvenience that even the beloved Steam offers, less so other more hated services like Origin and Always-Online DRM. The music industry tried going against the consumer with all their might, but they lost big and are now dependent on the tech industry for sales and offer their music without DRM.
You don't see books (even Online books) selling separate chapters trying to argue something entirely daft like "this chapter wasn't part of the main story, it's extra, honest!" and movies do have Director's Cuts and Extras, but those usually come out a lot later on DVD/Blu-Ray and the Theatrical release is mostly the same everywhere you can go and watch a movie.

Hands down the best god damn article on this site. Thank you for a wonderful read. Now if only we could get EA, Activision etc to read it and actually understand...

You know when you did the combo meal analogy all I could wonder is why don't companies offer DLC for free when you buy a new game. Then I thought... oh wait Valve already does that (or did that) with Team Fortress 2. You bought the game and then they kept expanding on it for free. You basically felt like you got the best value in the world. And once that system started to dwindle they switched it to F2P with hats.

Why don't more companies do stuff like this? From my limited knowledge of games sells the best way for a developer and publisher to get money is when you buy a game new. They get more of the profit and if you buy it from their service (Origin, Steam and the like) they get a much bigger share. So why not offer any existing and future DLC free when you buy new from their service? And whenever new DLC comes out for a game just drop the price of a game by just a small fraction so people think they are getting a better deal.

It seems like people would buy the thing in droves when it first comes out on your service. And then every time a new DLC pack would come out you would experience a small bump in sales.

I don't know how well this would work, but it seems a better idea then selling everything piecemeal. I mean I love Bioware games but I NEVER buy them new anymore. I wait until the price drops by a whole lot so that I can use that extra money to buy the DLC. And even then I rarely buy all the DLC. So it used to be I would buy a Bioware game for 60 bucks. But now EA is lucky if I pay them 30 bucks to play a Bioware game.

albino boo:

rembrandtqeinstein:
A huge difference is that Valve is a private company and EA is public.

Public companies only care about major shareholders, employees and customers are far down the list of concern. In an ideal world decisions that harm customers and employees would punish the shareholders by decreasing the stock price. In reality stock price is mostly coupled to quarterly earning reports so anything that increases the number on the reports is fair game regardless of the long term consequences.

With a private company usually the founder is in charge and it is "his baby". Until the dollar signs take over his brain he actually has some integrity about his decisions and cares about his reputation.

About the only "good" public company I can think of is Costco but that will probably change now that the founder retired from CEO. Hopefully he will keep tabs on his successor and has influence over policy decisions.

Really, lets examine this closely. TF2 has microtransactions and did so before it went F2P. Even after TF2 went F2P valve does not provide servers, what do you think their margins are on those microtransactions? Valve is just as ruthless but less transparent.

I wouldn't say they're less transparent, I'd say they're better about keeping their needs out of the way of players' experiences. As the article said, the perception of being satisfied/ripped off is a powerful thing; with EA&others on one hand you have always-online DRM, and/or hidden malware-like measures such as securom, that are only 'out of the way' until the moment they decide to pop up, wreck your machine, disable your antivirus, etc. With Valve on the other side, the controls and measures are upfront but unintrusive, while using the limited-window sales to give an incentive to impulse buy in exchange for amazing prices.

hentropy:
You don't get it. Businesses never do badly because of business practices, it's ALWAYS external factors. Like PIRACY and USED GAMES. This is the reason why EA is doing badly. PIRACY and USED GAMES. Until Congress kills torrents and Gamestop we're going to keep losing money. Steam does well because they came first and have trendy marketing. It just means we have to spend more money on marketers and time machines.

I was literally seconds from launching a bile-spewing raging response at this before it finally clicked this was a joke >_<. Been reading too much EA-spammer/apologist rhetoric recently I guess.
Then again, I should have known better something was up the second I saw your avatar.

zinho73:

His point has nothing to do with the drive to make money. The point is that Valve is much more interested in doing it without alienating their costumer base. I think it is a valid consideration.

They have done exactly the same thing as EA. They sold a game with microtransactions that enabled you to gets items at quicker pace than you could have done by scraping unwanted items and crafting.

MoltenSilver:

I wouldn't say they're less transparent, I'd say they're better about keeping their needs out of the way of players' experiences. As the article said, the perception of being satisfied/ripped off is a powerful thing; with EA&others on one hand you have always-online DRM, and/or hidden malware-like measures such as securom, that are only 'out of the way' until the moment they decide to pop up, wreck your machine, disable your antivirus, etc. With Valve on the other side, the controls and measures are upfront but unintrusive, while using the limited-window sales to give an incentive to impulse buy in exchange for amazing prices.

I was referring to that fact that EA have to publish there figures but Valve as an LLC doesn't have to. Also Steam and origin work in exactly the same fashion, the only difference is that origin has less social network features.

yes. I loved the value meal comparison, it's very apt.
And the entire article was just fantastic.

I'm so happy to see this series of articles revived. Please never leave again. D=

Here's hoping some folks at EA (and Sony and Microsoft and etc. etc. etc.) drop by and take your article to their next executive retreat.

Well done, sir!

That analogy with the fast food restaurant leaves a bit to be desired; EA would introduce Napkins with their new kind of Food which is a combination of Spaghetti and tacos.
And with EA, i'd fear that they would devise new way to make it more and more difficult to eat their food without dousing my entire shirt in sauce in order to sell more napkins.
And i'd probably be right.

So EA isn't extragreedy and despises the Customerbase, they're merely inept. And have been for two decades now.
At this Point, what does it matter?
The Probability that you buy a Product from EA and find something in it that might be rather unfortunately implementet or whatever you want to call it is very high.
Most product from EA will have something rather undesireable in it. People should get tired of this enduring ineptitude, if it isn't a deep hatred for their customers.

Buying games from EA isn't a very good Investment. Regardless of the Reasons you think EA has for doing what they're doing, you should stop keeping them afloat.

I still think it's greed, or rather, the quest for absolute control over their information.
But it's also "cluelessness" in the sense that if they weren't chasing absolute control, they could make more money and secure more trust from their paying customers.

Consider the goals from the publisher's side of things: EA (and Blizzard) is trying to train the market into accepting Always-Online DRM, just as Steam trained users to accept Online-DRM before them.

The rest of the groundwork is laid already...price-gouging DLC on a drip-line, near-free self-advertisement on a closed system, even the threat of loss to encourage users to stay attached to the system. The one remaining key to total-control is getting the market to accept Always-Online DRM.

I could do a whole treatise on the matter of control, and how consumers have been ceding control (both practically and legally) to publishers in the last decade, but I'll just leave it at that.

It's true: any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.

I think several people in this thread are missing the point. When EA nickle and dime you you feel cheated, because EA makes no attempt to disguise their contempt for their customers. On the other hand, when Valve nickle and dime you, you feel like you have received a series of bargains because Valve's publicity is not run by a bunch of drooling morons.

Atmos Duality:

I could do a whole treatise on the matter of control, and how consumers have been ceding control (both practically and legally) to publishers in the last decade, but I'll just leave it at that.

Well, you did make me interested... But the fact that steam is easily put up with by most people is probably telling enough.

Still, I'd kind of like to hear a bit more about how 'consumers have been ceding control (both practically and legally) to publishers in the last decade.'

This is true so much.
I actually really like the new season pass model.
Dlc's sucks, but it's something that won't go away and while i pay for something that i actually don't get right away, what i do get and like is the feeling of having the complete game, no matter what the developer is going to make in dlc in the future, i will always have the complete game.
Although it's not really important nowadays, because i never buy AAA games on release anymore.60 bucks for 8 hours of fun is just not worth it.

Well this is little solace.

This just means our foe is Wheatley rather than SHODAN.

Arguably malice would be preferable, you can make a deal with the devil to avoid mutually assured destruction, but an idiot will drive the flaming train right off the cliff at full speed, adamant that they are doing the right thing even as they plunge everyone to their doom.

hentropy:
Steam does well because they came first and have trendy marketing.

Steam wasn't the first to offer games they sell for download and they in fact have NO marketing.

They have no TV ads, no magazine ads, no internet banner ads, no pre-roll ads.

They depend almost entirely on their reputation spreading by word of mouth. They have a website where they promote things and fun youtube videos but you have to seek them out. Their "meet the team" videos entirely depended on everyone who would watch them to track them down.

Steam didn't buy their reputation from a marketing firm to be artificially created...

... they earned it.

Thunderous Cacophony:

We (the gaming culture) don't exactly help with the launch-window issue; We will heap scorn on anything that doesn't meet a deadline, even if such a deadline is laughably unrealistic.

Except that if anyone in the gaming industry (be it a company or a fan) should have learned anything by now, it's that scorn from gamers doesn't mean jack squat. Gamers will bitch to no ends about something they heard a new game is going to do, then make it a best seller when it comes out anyway. EA could have delayed Sim City for months if they needed to, it would have had minimal impact on their initial sales. In fact, arguably it would have helped their sales, since I'm sure that there are tons of people who specifically aren't buying Sim City because of the server issues. It's six of one, half a dozen of the other. They stand to lose customers either way, but they opted for the option that will make it harder to win them back in the future.

Reading this made a whole bunch of stuff click in my brain. Thanks, Shamus!

Amaror:

I actually really like the new season pass model.

But then it's painfully obvious that the whole game is going to cost you $120 ($60 + $60) and the last half is for the smallest little things.

Games generally cost less than movies to make, so WHY DO PUBLISHERS WANT TO CHARGE x15 AS MUCH!!?!?

It's like a person who sells water from a well trying to convince ten-in-a-thousand to pay $100 for a measly glass of water while another 1000 go thirsty, rather than just charging $1 each to the 1100.

It's madness when Publishers have an infinite supply of product, they can make as many copies of their game as they like.

$60 base price may not have increased much over the years. But when you got a $60 game it was expected to be a major purchase, now single-player games are usually so short with little to no replay value. Very few have any multiplayer that will hold the critical number of people to have a sustainable community. Once the number of players dips below a certain level, then those who are still playing find it harder and harder to get a match... so less play it... making it harder to get a match.

The price is wrong. Steam sale prices, those are right. Gog's multibuy deals, those are right.

Thunderous Cacophony:

We (the gaming culture) don't exactly help with the launch-window issue; We will heap scorn on anything that doesn't meet a deadline, even if such a deadline is laughably unrealistic.

Bioshock Infinite had been in development since 2007... even then the fans were understanding that they kept delaying it.

All the jokes about Half Life 3's delays are that... jokes. Generally the fans-base is supportive of the time and effort Valve put into things.

What they are mad at is when a game is delayed by years and is still terrible and the developers listened to none of the warnings.

lacktheknack:
Reading this made a whole bunch of stuff click in my brain. Thanks, Shamus!

This is exactly how I feel.

I feel like I knew this all along, but I couldn't put the words into place.

Thank you, Shamus. This is why I named my dog after you :)

RatherDull:

lacktheknack:
Reading this made a whole bunch of stuff click in my brain. Thanks, Shamus!

This is exactly how I feel.

I feel like I knew this all along, but I couldn't put the words into place.

Thank you, Shamus. This is why I named my dog after you :)

You know what's really creepy? My dog's name is Seamus (pronounced the same way).

I detect conspiracy.

So what you are saying is that we should place a DRM-type scheme on food. Dude, that is GENIUS!

About customers feeling like they've saved money on bundles: Honestly, you have serious problems if you are spending money on stuff you have no intention of playing. There is a case where there maybe one or two games from a bundle that you just don't care about. However, I see people here claiming to have dozens of games that they have not played.

Again, there is a point when you are older and have a career where you have more money than time, and it takes getting used to, but that isn't the case with most people, it seems.

About EA, it is unfortunate that the business leaders of the day seem completely inept at what they are doing. It's not just in the games industry. I remember reading a magazine article where the author seemed puzzled that these Yale grads seem to be having difficulty grasping simple business practices. They buy out their competition, nullifying their way to draw money from them. They support policies that leave consumers with less, and yet act utterly shocked that they are unable to make a profit.

hickwarrior:

Well, you did make me interested... But the fact that steam is easily put up with by most people is probably telling enough.

Still, I'd kind of like to hear a bit more about how 'consumers have been ceding control (both practically and legally) to publishers in the last decade.'

I did have a much larger post typed up, but opted for a summary-comment when I realized how long it was.
(That, and most of it was rather tangential to the topic at hand anyway.)

This isn't the first time AAA Publishers have had to train the market to accept something that isn't necessarily beneficial (or in some cases, malevolent) to consumers.

That's my take on the subject as I understand it, and why I don't see as the result of mere cluelessness, but a lengthy plan with great risk involved.

I think that if the market becomes too polarized in Supply or Demand's favor, it destabilizes on account of trust (or lack thereof) and collapses. I am not a devout doomsayer predicting the next "Gaming Crash", but if there were a reason for such a thing to occur again, it will unquestionably be due to distrust causing the collapse of the AAA publishers.

Right now, as a paying customer who does not pirate, I find it increasingly difficult to trust these companies at all.

AAA publishers are pushing ahead, trying to reach that "holy grail" of service-centrality before the rest of the market starts (rightly) rejecting them outright.

This is admittedly a shot in the dark, but I think that's their real motivator, and why we keep seeing these head-slappingly stupid money-grabs and control-schemes being established DESPITE these same companies losing ground year after year.

Treblaine:
Games generally cost less than movies to make, so WHY DO PUBLISHERS WANT TO CHARGE x15 AS MUCH!!?!?

It's about how the cost of production is covered by the consumer. Not only are there more people who enjoy movies, but it's possible to see a lot more of them. You can watch hundreds of movies a year, so they can make a lot of money at low prices. But games, even today, take more time to get through, so you can only really justify a couple of dozen purchases a year, so the games industry must charge more per purchase. Steam sales trick people into buying games they'll rarely/never play, but even then I doubt many people buy a game a day, while it's quite possible to see a movie every day.

The more I think about it, the more this makes sense. I seriously doubt that EA was MWAHAHA-ing in some Bond villain lair, plotting to pull the rug out from under us with SimCity's launch. Why would they? They've had so many PR nightmares in the last year, I've lost count. It feels like some bean counters decided to take a chance and save money on servers rather then make sure they had plenty of extra server space, just in case.

Too much focus on quick results for the shareholders and not enough on building a loyal customer base.

Bad Jim:

Treblaine:
Games generally cost less than movies to make, so WHY DO PUBLISHERS WANT TO CHARGE x15 AS MUCH!!?!?

It's about how the cost of production is covered by the consumer. Not only are there more people who enjoy movies, but it's possible to see a lot more of them. You can watch hundreds of movies a year, so they can make a lot of money at low prices. But games, even today, take more time to get through, so you can only really justify a couple of dozen purchases a year, so the games industry must charge more per purchase. Steam sales trick people into buying games they'll rarely/never play, but even then I doubt many people buy a game a day, while it's quite possible to see a movie every day.

Oooh, so you are saying games simply won't sell in higher numbers and they HAVE to go for $60... hmm. That's obviously wrong and I can't possibly see how you'd think that, or even if you really do think that but you are saying that just to fool others.

It's obvious this isn't the case looking at the "tie-ratio" for consoles and how pathetically low. Tie ratio is how many games are bought on average for each console. Guess how many? For Xbox 360... Ten. The Xbox 360 has been on sale for almost 8 years and on average each console owner has on average bought only 10 new games. TEN! In 8 years!

http://www.vgchartz.com/analysis/platform_totals/Tie-Ratio/Global/

There are 52 weeks in the year, all but the longest games can be played through in a week. The few that take longer are offset by those that can be completed on a Sunday afternoon. The average Xbox 360 user has not been limited to only 10 games by not having the time in the day to play more, they have been limited by the price.

One thing you VERY RARELY hear is:

"no I'm not going to get this awesome new game that I can easily afford, as I still am swamped from all the other $60 games I've bought".

Never heard that. What I hear over and over again is:

"Yeah it looks interesting and I'd play it, but I'm going to wait till it's cheaper, pre-owned or something. Or till I have some money."

image

I didn't make this, I found it.

You don't find memes complaining about how games are too long and they are limited from playing more games from how long each one is.

How many people do you know visit the cinema more often than they go home?

Their PC or games console is in their home and they can play it any time. Games may be longer but it's far more convenient to get through the hours in a game on a home console or PC than at the movies, and this is for new releases, new games you can play at home right away, cinema releases take many months to get a home release.

Steam sales trick people into buying games they'll rarely/never play

Trick?!?! I'm fed up of people posting such blatantly derailing nonsense, it should be a bannable offence.

There is not trickery at all, and you know that, everything is clear and there are no illusions and you know that full well and said it anyway.

For one, I will always have these games, I don't have to play them now. And I almost certainly won't play them if I have not yet finished prequels in the series. There is satisfaction alone in owning these games free to play them any time I want and that "voted with my wallet" on that game. That I will pay for it, but pay a fair price.

I tend to disagree because what EA is doing is removing things from products, or using the products themselves as platforms to sell you things. The microtransaction system added into Dead Space for example wasn't the equivilent of just adding another charge, it was creating an entire game mechanic based around making the experience less ideal
unless you paid them additional money. If your a really good gamer, you might be able to get by without paying EA a dime, but for a lot of gamers they will wind up being undergeared or suffering from bad desicians in choosing what to make and upgrade, unless they exploit a glitch to "grind" money amounting to potentially hours of wasted busywork to progress, or pay EA to move on. The idea being that someone who already paid $60 is going to want to finish the game they already paid for (especially since they can't get a refund) and doesn't want to spend hours grinding, so they will pay money in order to progress in the game. EA's own people "slipped" recently in flat out saying that they intended to put these kinds of microtransactions into all of their games, to keep people paying for a product they already bought. EA backpedaled on this (not that anyone was buying it) but the damage was done, and we peaked behind the curtain.

See, with Valve it can be argued they are "Greedy" as well, but at the end of the day they are giving you complete products for less money than you would pay otherwise. Sure they are exploiting impulse buyers, but they aren't selling you a product that is simply a gateway to try and get you to pay more money for what should be basic functionality.

Also, the thing is with EA's "problems" is that they do not seem to be genuinely failing so much as not being able to meet their own self-imposed expectations for success. Like most big corperations they engage in layoffs and other behaviors rather than actually dealing with lower profits. What's more a lot of their failures are the direct result of some of their greedier plans backfiring on them, mismanaging their brands, or just flat out creating crappy products.

To be honest I think a lot of EA's problems are also that it just flat out upset too many of it's customers, especially the "core gamers" they were reliant on, whom they figured were so game obsessed they would tolerate anything they did in pursueing the casual audience and still be there as a safety net. It's just your seeing the effects of this over time as people drop away a few at a time and it adds up, rather than due to some great boycott happening all at once.

I'll also say that EA's problems have also been customer service related, EA simply treats people like crap at the best of times, and then wonders why people hate them. It's a big part of why when someone "slips" and makes an annoucement to the public that should have only been made to people in the industry, it's hammered even worse than usual, because not only does it reinforce the worst sentimnents about EA, but because they have genuinely POed people to want to jump on them for how they were treated.

Add to this EA's somewhat deceptive marketing techniques, and there are other issues as well. To give one example, I recently got talked into trying ToR again recently due to some of the things I said about it. I figured since they went FTP I'd pay to unlock the account features once with a big pile of cash and get the equivilent of a lifetime subscription (which I have for other games) and bounce in and out because I figure with the upcoming Star Wars movies and such the game isn't going to be going anywhere despite it's lukewarm reception. I spent a fairly generous sum of money, only to actually start playing the game and learn that what I set out to do isn't possible because of the things you simply can't pay to unlock, and that even after paying a decent chunk of change you basically run around and have the game periodically say "hahaha, you freeloader scumbag, we're not going to give you full exps, or let you select all the quest rewards because you don't pay a monthly fee" which is ironic because after what I paid there really aren't many benefits left to subscribing other than that.... but really that isn't the point, so much as the constant attempts to remind me that despite the money I sunk into the game they don't give a crap, they still demand moar money, and can't even have the courtasy to shut the hell up in reminding me that I'm not a subscriber. Other games might still try and sell you things, but really ToR is the only one I've personally played that literally intergrates reminders about how much you suck into their central game engine.

Not to mention in doing unlocks I wasted money because for some reason the option to do "global account wide unlock" didn't show up at first (honestly) sound I wound up paying for a single character, and then for an account-wide unlock at a higher price at least once. Error, or intentional, I have no idea. But I'll tell you EA's game is the only one I've ever had an issue like that with.

That said, I will say that they did clean up the game nicely since when I played after launch, it runs much better now and some of the little tweaks and additions do show.

... also as a side note for anyone still developing MMOs, I'm a big fan of lifetime subscriptions when availible. I get that $60 isn't enough to maintain a game infrastructure and additions for years on end. However I vastly prefer to drop one big allotment of money all at once and then not worry about it, to either a subscription model or a forced "piecemeal" microtransaction system. I'm just saying.

look at the model EA have set up. if i get a dragon age game or mass effect game there is bioware social to go to if you want to get the dlc and handle that side. if you want to get the micro transactions for sims 3 you go to the sims 3 store all of this ontop of purchasing the base game somewhere else or through origin but dont worry you need to install origin as well.

now take steams model. i purchase the base game, it installs, it auto updates so i dont need to worry about patches, i get notified of dlc, etc when they are available for sale which are purchased the same as the base game and auto install.

there is no hassle with the steam model when it works properly and everything is in the same place

My God. I can't believe I'm actually typing this but.

I kinda agree with something Shamus Young wrote.

*shudder* I feel dirty.

Dexter111:
I agree with your argument, it is definitely (also) about that.

But as always I have to take issue for comparing an entertainment industry product with comestible goods like food, because the two don't compare in many ways.
You should compare an entertainment industry product with other entertainment industry products like books, music or movies at least.

And NONE of these industries have as egregious practices as the gaming industry does. None of them could even measure up to the level of DRM and possible inconvenience that even the beloved Steam offers, less so other more hated services like Origin and Always-Online DRM. The music industry tried going against the consumer with all their might, but they lost big and are now dependent on the tech industry for sales and offer their music without DRM.
You don't see books (even Online books) selling separate chapters trying to argue something entirely daft like "this chapter wasn't part of the main story, it's extra, honest!" and movies do have Director's Cuts and Extras, but those usually come out a lot later on DVD/Blu-Ray and the Theatrical release is mostly the same everywhere you can go and watch a movie.

The problem with comparing the game industry to literally ANY other entertainment industry is that games are (or have the potential to be) completely nonlinear. Of course we don't see people releasing DLC for books, books are a linear medium! Shoving a random chapter into A Game of Thrones where Ned Stark goes off to fight the Targaryens can't work because each chapter of a book builds on the previous in a way that games often do, but don't have to. Games can be expanded upon, even when the game has a definite ending (See also: the Mass Effect 3 DLC. That game sure as hell ends, but there's still room to explore the universe the dev team crafted before it does.)

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