Jimquisition: Buyer Beware

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Buyer Beware

Caveat Emptor is the "get out of an argument free" card for people who want to defend shoddy business practices. It's friggin' bollocks, though.

Watch Video

Another Good one Jim, Keep up the Good Work and have a good day

Grange Hill?! That takes me back.

Well if that new theme is for making one man laugh I'll admit that I joined in, making it two.

Anyway, yes I agree, especially because most of the consumers won't be people who will visit sites like The Escapist. They'll just believe what the advert tells them because companies aren't supposed to outright lie about their product.

As a quiz nose and a stupid fucking dickhead* I find it annoying that you have to post videos to clarify previous ones because people don't get the message.

*Reference to Dismal Jesters, in-case anyone's wondering/getting angry

Wait, Jim, didn't you mock Mass Effect fans when they expected what they were promised back with Mass Effect 3?

That doesn't sound like something a consumer advocate should do.

Love the 80s-style opening and closing beds.

Thank god for Jim!

I don't understand the point of the song replacement or if it tied into the rest of the episode in some way, but I totally enjoyed it!

Yep. These corporations have us by the short hairs. It shouldn't be that way and the only real thing we can do is be aware of what we're buying. Go! Go! Libertarian paradise. :p

josh4president:
Wait, Jim, didn't you mock Mass Effect fans when they expected what they were promised back with Mass Effect 3?

That doesn't sound like something a consumer advocate should do.

What, precisely, were they "promised"?

Did you buy the rights to use that for one video? Can't imagine it's public domain.

Is this really anymore prevalent today than it was in the past?

Remember - we had E.T: The Extra Terrestrial for the Atari back in the 1980s. There has always been shovelware and outright broken games pushed onto the market. Sure, the absolute number of examples may be higher today, but that's likely because of the sheer volume of games released today.

I'd like to see some evidence that this is a "bigger problem than ever" as claimed in the video. As in, are a bigger percentage of games real eased in 2014 broken or seriously flawed, compared to previous decades? My gut feeling is that isn't the case, as games generally seem to work a lot more reliably and be more user-friendly than they were in the 80s, 90s and 2000s. There was shit that got released in previous eras that you just couldn't get away with today. Remember when you often has to troubleshoot your computer, and screw around with drivers and hacks, just to get some games to run at all?

Then there's the issue of online media - gamers have access to so many more channels of information these days with the internet. Back in the day we only had word of mouth and games magazines that were even more in the pocket of the industry than they are now. It was way harder to find answers to your problems, or balanced reviews. The average person now has a wealth of information at their fingertips which once required you to be a member of a club, or log onto obscure BBSes to obtain.

No Jim. No. I am sorry but I cannot agree with this at all...

We need the old music back.

OT: While I am a strong believer in personal responsibility and that people should pay attention to what they buy, given the sort of things we have seen in the last few years, you are completely right in saying that it's not the consumers fault entirely.

EA being sneaky with their feedback for Dungeon Keeper to make the game look more highly rated than it is.
Alien Colonial Marines with it's falsified advertisements.
Games being released without previously promised features.

While in some ways "You shouldn't pre-order games" is valid, we shouldn't be in such a situation where such things are necessary. We shouldn't be worried about whether or not the game we buy is what we were promised, because anything other than that is not something that should even be allowed in the first place.

The industry cares about money more than anything else, and that in itself (why I am not happy with it) is not wrong. But that doesn't mean they should be allowed to get it from deception, misleading customers or making it difficult to come across all of the facts.

jdarksun:

josh4president:
Wait, Jim, didn't you mock Mass Effect fans when they expected what they were promised back with Mass Effect 3?

That doesn't sound like something a consumer advocate should do.

What, precisely, were they "promised"?

Not all of them were promises, but I feel there were enough obvious falsehoods regarding the ending in those interviews for people to consider the endings to be broken promises.

Especially these ones:

"There are many different endings. We wouldn't do it any other way. How could you go through all three campaigns playing as your Shepard and then be forced into a bespoke ending that everyone gets? But I can't say any more than that..."

Interviewer:
[Regarding the numerous possible endings of Mass Effect 2] "Is that
same type of complexity built into the ending of Mass Effect 3?"

Hudson:
"Yeah, and I'd say much more so, because we have the ability to build
the endings out in a way that we don't have to worry about eventually
tying them back together somewhere. This story arc is coming to an end
with this game. That means the endings can be a lot more different. At
this point we're taking into account so many decisions that you've made
as a player and reflecting a lot of that stuff. It's not even in any way
like the traditional game endings, where you can say how many endings
there are or whether you got ending A, B, or C.....The endings have a
lot more sophistication and variety in them."

"There is a huge set of consequences that start stacking up as you approach the end-game. And even in terms of the ending itself, it continues to break down to some very large decisions. So it's not like a classic game
ending where everything is linear and you make a choice between a few things - it really does layer in many, many different choices, up to the final moments, where it's going to be different for everyone who plays it."

Although almost everybody who reads these then pulls the "Oh, but all developers do this before games come out. It doesn't count."

That's what fucking quality control departments exist for!

Nailed it.

Though, for all the talk about how consumer trust isn't infinite, I can't help but wonder where these "buyer beware" types are even coming from. Maybe those people really do have infinite patience for shovelware.

josh4president:
Wait, Jim, didn't you mock Mass Effect fans when they expected what they were promised back with Mass Effect 3?

I mocked aspects of it, and sympathized with other aspects of it. See my "Entitlement" episode for my views on that.

I am a consumer advocate, but that does not mean I think gamers are 100% correct at all times.

(And I also admitted I was wrong on *some* of the aspects surrounding ME3. It surprises me you have such a long-term memory, but only for outdated sections of an event)

...sorry, did I miss why the Record Breakers theme was being used?

Wow people actually disagreed with you about Steam quality control and and spouted buyer beware. Seriously I am surprised no sarcasm here. I agree with you that its' not the customers fault about 95%. I do think that the consumer had the opportunity long ago and still kind of do by simply making good on their threats to boycott. I Stopped buying games from Steam long ago because I wasn't happy with the way they were doing things. I haven't bought anything from Actervision since 2004 and Crysis was the last thing I bought from EA.

Call me a hipster but I mostly buy from indies or AA studios. There are mostly two reason, one is that AAA have kind lost appeal for me and second is because I have lost trust in the studios that produce them. If more people did this I'm sure the quality game development would change. Great video as always Jim.

Aardvaarkman:
Is this really anymore prevalent today than it was in the past?

Remember - we had E.T: The Extra Terrestrial for the Atari back in the 1980s. There has always been shovelware and outright broken games pushed onto the market. Sure, the absolute number of examples may be higher today, but that's likely because of the sheer volume of games released today.

I'd like to see some evidence that this is a "bigger problem than ever" as claimed in the video. As in, are a bigger percentage of games real eased in 2014 broken or seriously flawed, compared to previous decades? My gut feeling is that isn't the case, as games generally seem to work a lot more reliably and be more user-friendly than they were in the 80s, 90s and 2000s. There was shit that got released in previous eras that you just couldn't get away with today. Remember when you often has to troubleshoot your computer, and screw around with drivers and hacks, just to get some games to run at all?

Yeah, and it was the total lack of quality control that resulted in America's great video game crash. Heaps upon heaps of overblown, outdated, and simply broken games for consoles brought the games industry to its knees. The entire reason Nintendo's Seal of Quality was so lauded was not because all games with that seal were great, but rather because that seal guaranteed that the game would work on the console.

OT: I do overall agree with this Jimquisition. Though I do not think another Video Game Crash is on the horizon, there will be a huge backlash against this lack of quality control and it won't be pretty to the industry as a whole.

Pallindromemordnillap:
...sorry, did I miss why the Record Breakers theme was being used?

Well, it sure as shit ain't the Record Breakers theme, for one.

The new intro and outro music makes me think Jim is going to appear in a sweater vest to talk to us about treating our fellow employees with respect. You know, one of those old corporate training videos.

xaszatm:

Yeah, and it was the total lack of quality control that resulted in America's great video game crash.

Perhaps partly, but I think it was mostly to do with the rise of the home computer. Why buy a dedicated console, when home computer systems had games that were just as good, but also had other useful functions for business and education?

Also, the economy in general was in a pretty rough patch at the time, and the ratio of disposable income to the cost of electronic devices was very different then that it is today.

I can definitely sympathize on a few levels with the people who do say things like buyer beware and: If you made an uninformed decision you "deserve" whatever consequences and shit you get for showing such a lack of responsibility with your own resources.

In not just video games but with all things you SHOULD beware, that goes for all commodoties.
Its healthy for a consumer in the long rong to actively seek out information that they can base certain choices on, because companies all over the world will stretch the truth on what their product does or doesnt do and yes while that is utterly disgusting practices that we've somehow just become apathetic towards with a "thats just how it is", its still something i believe can be changed and that you for now still have to adapt somewhat by being a responsible consumer in anything you do.

On the other hand just like this video points out: You shouldnt need to always at all times have to tread through a minefield or dig through a pile of dung just to find a hidden gem or the genuinely trustworthy and good companies and products that are upfront and transparent with their practices and who has the interest of the costumer as their primary priority, providing all the necessary information upfront to the consumer and being honest with their products or services.

Steam is in dire need of quality control and so are a lot of other things, you shouldnt need to become a brittish cynic in order to see that undeniable fact.

On a last note i believe the responsibility falls partially on both parties, not equally though, but enough so that one side definitely can do something about this kind of disgusting lack of quality control going on, every bubble will burst eventually but we can speed that process up severely as consumers, even though we shouldnt need to because this is a problem created by the industry in the first place but being held up by uninformed costumers so the sad truth is: Vote with your wallet.

What is this music? Why? GO BACK

Anyway awesome episode. Ya buyer beware can shove it, I guess I should have been Buyer Beware when I Bought RE4 HD ultimate on steam. I'm suppose to beware " Hey prebuy this stuff and get extra bonuses, Beware that an ALMOST 10 YEAR OLD GAME that has been ported to hell and back, and even ALREADY has a working version on pc would be UNPLAYABLE! How am I suppose to BEWARE When steam lets makers DELETE TOPICS about the game being unplayable, Why do I boot the game up and test it out before posting this a month and a half later and still find the damn game UNPLAYABLE dropping to like 5 frames per second during cutsences and in gameplay when anything other then leon is moving on the god damn screen.

I don't even care that much about the game, I wanted it because hell I'd have a nostalgia trip with it sometime and might as well buy it when it's coming with bonus stuff. But ya buyer beware now buying things from capcom, and hell steam better clean up the act soon before buyer beware buying anything from them if I can't even get a straight answer of "WILL THIS GAME EVEN RUN?"

Aardvaarkman:

xaszatm:

Yeah, and it was the total lack of quality control that resulted in America's great video game crash.

Perhaps partly, but I think it was mostly to do with the rise of the home computer. Why buy a dedicated console, when home computer systems had games that were just as good, but also had other useful functions for business and education?

Erm...the same reason people buy dedicated consoles for gaming today? Simple installation, plugs into the TV, guarantees to some degree that the software will work with the hardware, and exclusive titles. That's just quick, off-the-top-of-my-head reasons.

I don't like change! Old music back, please! I can't handle happy music sandwiching a pissed-off guy in a suit.

Ya, buyer beware is bullshit. I could only be so aware of Battlefield 4 when all the reviews and EA saying that the game will probably be fixed soon. Five months later... and nope, still broken.

No, it's not a get out of jail free card.

Games can be shit and the companies that produce them will get verbal abuse, but researching your games before you buy, is still sound advice, unless you like to play shit.

It's not like righteous indignation will solve anything by itself.

Wrong spot, sorry

For those who aren't Brits who grew up in the 90's, The music was the theme music for this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grange_Hill

One question still remains, who did you make laugh Jim?

Oh Jim! Grange Hill!!! That takes me back. But whatever next... Byker Grove! >_>

Between Grange Hill here, and the Crystal Maze on Matt Lees' show, I feel like I've travelled back in time about 20 years.

As for the episode itself I agree. As someone who tries to keep himself informed on gaming stuff, I don't mock those who don't but instead try to inform them myself, particularly when it comes to purchasing decisions.

And now Body Break! With Jim Sterling and Miniature Fantasy Willem DaFoe! Remember see thru bullshit, and have fun!

(I don't really know what the song is, bu that's where my mind went)

[quote i/]Then there's the issue of online media - gamers have access to so many more channels of information these days with the internet. Back in the day we only had word of mouth and games magazines that were even more in the pocket of the industry than they are now. It was way harder to find answers to your problems, or balanced reviews. The average person now has a wealth of information at their fingertips which once required you to be a member of a club, or log onto obscure BBSes to obtain.[quote i/]

The point is, that the Industry mounding Dinosaur Shit in my way to having fun should not be acceptable on the basis that shovel technology has vastly improved. Essentially when I go to purchase a video game, my reaction should not be:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWHqLJHss9U

Well, if the entire Mass Effect fan base had read the leaked script prior to the release, they would have all know how crappy the entire story was, especially the ending, and very few would have bothered buying the game. I know a handful of people who did this.

Maybe this is what these people mean. We should start hacking into developer's computers systems to find out what they are making exactly before we make a purchase.

Like Quicklessacross, I do think customers should do at least some research before paying for products, especially given how easy it is in this day and age. Then again considering how crappy and corrupt these reviews tend to be in the video game industry generally your right something has to change. I do agree though that the plethora of out right broken titles is a problem for developers and really they shouldn't be sold on third party sites.

ETA: I do think you need to fix the lighting, it looks like your shooting a poor production Jihad video in there.

Can we start putting in requests for CBBC theme music to be used as intro/outro music?

Because the Roobard & Custard theme would be kind of fitting, I think.

Honestly, I've spent more time in the past week researching games I considered buying than I did actually playing the games I did buy. It's depressing the number of games (on Steam) that are broken, incomplete, contain additional DRM, require additional account registration, or are 10+ years old and do not support Win7-64bit.

If Steam reinstated some sort of "Quality Control" (or call it whatever) that would simply categorize "new" releases into separate queues (new releases, re-releases, Early Access, self-published, etc), that would at least be a start.

Addendum: I've no opinion on the new intro music one way or the other. The core content of the video was still excellent.

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