Jimquisition: Shadiness of Mordor

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Shadiness of Mordor

The Eye of Sauron is watching, forever watching, and he wants to make sure your YouTube videos are "on message."

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Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

Seeing this contract thing is just.. Weird. Never even knew reviewers and lets players had contracts. I thought they just played games.

Oh well, at least the game is good.

hermes200:
Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

Was wondering about that as well. Seems strange.

Shady, sketchy and completely unnecessary. Cheesus H. Christmas, I deeply dislike this sort of stuff from companies. Urgh.

Ya I saw the TB vid on the game and that bit about the contract was shady as hell...

I wonder what caused the self-doubt in the company that led to making this over-restrictive contract in the first place? I know that when approaching launch day producers can get anxious but this is hysterical. I haven't being following Shadow of Mordor in the weeks preceding to launch so I wonder if there was any significant events that happened prior to release that may have caused this.

Did you seriously just say "that makes it ripe for exploitation from old companies who want to make everyone conform to the old ways"? Because ... aaaaah, forget it.

The sponsored deal was horsepoop, people responsible need to be punished by their boss over this and let's hope this never happens again.

Too bad this had to be a negative video about the publishers. This game was quite simply, amazing, and I am disappointed in the practices they tried to pull.

Roofstone:

hermes200:
Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

Was wondering about that as well. Seems strange.

Probably the same reason it's not called Lord of the Rings: Shadow of Mordor, in that the game actually isn't considered canon and is thus "separate" from the mythos.

Or something like that.

Edit: The devs wanted to avoid confusion that it had anything to do with the movies or books.

This is insane! I say the TB video of Shadow of Mordor and didn't properly take in just how overbearing they were being.

If I'd heard about this before buying the game then I definitely wouldn't have bought it. Hearing about this level of control over a particular product is just so suspicious that I'd be pretty certain the game would be awful... but the game is good, so what the hell was this for?

It's like walking through an airport shouting "I'm not a suicide bomber, honest!".

hermes200:
Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

They probably don't want some Tolkien fanatic make a video with every point in the story contradicting the books or something.

Anyway as Jim said, this is a pretty good game and didn't need such measures.

I do wonder how much video games people who make these contracts play though.
Hell, with all the uproar to get better ethics in game journalism that has been the talk lately, this is a pretty stupid move.

Dear Jim,

I was expecting you to talk about the stupidity of Shadow of Mordor's system requirements for "Ultra" (inferior to C3 and Metro LL) settings.
Their lying about the game needing 6GB of VRAM OR their incompetence that it requires it in the first place. Only to help AMD/Nvidia sell more GPUs...

Because it is a game that says it need 6 GB of VRAM, yet even on Ultra settings it does not compare favourably agains games like Crysis 3 and Metro Last Light Redux that dont need more then 2 or 3.

And how Wolfenstein lied as well, saying you need a DX11 (Opengl 4+) GPU yet was coded on OpenGL 3.2.
(http://www.hardocp.com/article/2014/05/21/wolfenstein_new_order_performance_review#.VDK-w_mSydg)

Not saying this wasn't an interesting and good video, because it was and I appreciate it. I liked it Jim. It IS a serious ISSUE IMHO.

But Bullshit LIES/Marketing/coding incompetence needs exposure too.

*PS: The game is on other settings quite well optimized. And is DAMN good. I am not saying it is a bad game.*

Having heard about this, it makes me doubt the validity of the previous coverage I'd seen of this game. It may be legitimately good, it might not be. Given that there's language that essentially says "make sure you mention this and keep it good (or else)", I have no way of knowing with certainty just how much of a reviewer's opinion is his/her own and how much of it is done to appease their contract. I want this industry to succeed, but I don't want it done with Stepford Wives-esque complacency. "Everything's fine, dear. Here, have another AAA game..."

WarHamster40K:
Having heard about this, it makes me doubt the validity of the previous coverage I'd seen of this game. It may be legitimately good, it might not be. Given that there's language that essentially says "make sure you mention this and keep it good (or else)", I have no way of knowing with certainty just how much of a reviewer's opinion is his/her own and how much of it is done to appease their contract. I want this industry to succeed, but I don't want it done with Stepford Wives-esque complacency. "Everything's fine, dear. Here, have another AAA game..."

That is the saddest part. The game genuinely IS good enough to deserve a lot of the praise I saw. Shitty tactics like this undermine the goodwill that a game is quite capable of earning on its own. In some ways, I'm more saddened by a good game having its qualities doubted than I am by a bad game being lied about to make it look good. It's just a waste of natural credit.

Yeah, it was totally weird to me that they did that, because I was watching the gameplay footage and I thought, "That looks like a really good, fluid combat system. Why the hell were they afraid reviewers were going to be mean to it?" I mean, hell, this video, just watching its footage, was enough to make me interested in giving it a look that I wasn't before, even without Jim's thumbs-up at the end.

Great. Can't trust video game journalists. Can't trust YouTubers, Can't trust video game companies. The sadness of the business today.

I'm not sure what to think of that game yet. I haven't seen enough indicators of how it actually plays. However, knowing about this contract has made me decide to not buy it on principle.

Controversy is a good thing for media

It's just a PR team. This is one facet of a massive machine -- developers teams some times world and publishers -- trying to make this project work. This is a new industry: the wild west, and that should by understood by people who make this industry their actual livelihood. Hence Adam Sessler's very fitting tweet.

Having found that most of this industry media is not only gullible but liberal as well, it's not shocking to see their shock at this sort of practice.

But the media will not always be honest. And honest media personalities -- Yahtzee and JimQuisition -- will always be a too cynical to help this industry in a meaningful way.

Shadow of Mordor game is ridiculously fun -- people are pouring more hours into than that new console MMO.

I lot of this contract gobbledygook flew well over my head, but Jim did give me a new swear word to use. It'll be extra funny to say when I sneeze.

BlueJoneleth:

hermes200:
Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

They probably don't want some Tolkien fanatic make a video with every point in the story contradicting the books or something...

I don't know. After all, the "positive attitude" about the game pretty much guarantees that the game will not be call on unflattering lights (at least, by the people that did sign up the contract)

This seems like they are trying to distance the game from the rest of the franchise, which sounds weird considering the game is actually pretty good and they still have movies coming out within the franchise. Anything that could raise interest by association should be welcomed (unless they thought the game was going to be so poorly received that it would tarnish their movies branch).

Everything in this game licencing sounds weird, like how there are a ton of references to obscure items of Tolkien's lore, but they had to recreate all enemies as Uruks, Graugs and Caragors because Orcs, Trolls and Wargs were taken, apparently...

They actually tried to cut ties with the LOTR/Hobbit films but had "Him" in it. Is he a different copyright or something?

Geez Jim, why not just marry TB already... can I be a bridesmaid?

OT: I hear the game is really good, my brother says the combats quick and punchy (stabby) while the nemesis system is generally interesting but fuck that we have an audience to alienate, LETS GO PEOPLE!!!

This shit isn't exactly new either: google EA ronku.

I trust a man like Total Biscuit to stay honest, but I'm pretty sure these schemes wouldn't exist without atleast some takers.
Youtubers and traditional game reviewers are just advertisers to me, until I can find out enough about them that encourages trust.

UberThetan:

Roofstone:

hermes200:
Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

Was wondering about that as well. Seems strange.

Probably the same reason it's not called Lord of the Rings: Shadow of Mordor, in that the game actually isn't considered canon and is thus "separate" from the mythos.

Or something like that.

Edit: The devs wanted to avoid confusion that it had anything to do with the movies or books.

Which is absolutely bizarre. Gollum as he appears in the films - and even voiced by an Andy Serkis sound-a-like - is the game. Hell, they even establish that this takes place not to long before Fellowship.

Wow! There is a different between shady dealings and this BS. What kind of corporate scumbag thought this up? I can understand something like that if the game was total ass. But if it was a good or possibly a great game, you only end up shooting yourself in the foot with this dirty deed. No matter what you do from that point forward, a lot of people are going to judge your output with a more critical eye and there might be a game that doesn't deserve it.

Thanks for bringing this up, Jim, and kudos to Totalbiscuit for speaking up as well.

A good episode as always. On a somewhat related note I am waiting to get this until I am done with Hyrule Warriors. 7 more Rank 3 weapons to go!

(Agitha can die in a fire, she's so bad DX)

It's pretty shitty, but I feel you are dancing around the real issue here - reviewers shouldn't rely on free or pre-release copies of games. Reviewers should be buying retail copies at release like everybody else.

You're just playing their game by going down this "first to review" path of bullshit.

hermes200:
Weird that they specified not wanting references to the movies or the books... Its from the same WB, after all.

The reason is the same reason why "Lord of the Rings" is not in the game title, instead just a reference to 'Middle Earth'. It has been vetted by critics that WB felt very strongly that any ties to the existing media would make Mordor look like a bad movie tie-in or cash grab. After having spent over a decade making debatably-mediocre movie tie-in LotR games, they are really tired of their games being known as such. Any spoken phrase linking Shadows of Mordor to [insert generic LotR movie game here] would have "Tainted" players opinions.

Good thing they went the censorship route, because that never taints peoples feelings /sarcasm.

And I'm watching this as SoM is downloading. Typical.

I waited until the positive reviews started flooding in before preordering, feeling safe in the knowledge that it was a good game, which by all accounts it really is. I saw this thing blow up on Twitter last week and felt like cancelling my order on principle but the sodding thing had already dispatched. (Useless courier sent it to the wrong address which is why I only just received it.)

I feel that there should be a more organised front to combat this bullshit. I bought this to replace my yearly Assassins Creed fix on account of Ubisoft being kinda cunts lately, but this is much worse than Ubisoft's shit. At least the other main publishers usually work well with YouTubers but this, whilst probably legal, is very fucking immoral. I don't really like using the B-word as it's vastly overused, but is this an appropriate time to talk about boycotts?

At least TotalBiscuit got code and it's great that he managed to stick to his principles, but he's also a YouTube titan who could easily get half a million views on making a video on why WB are being dicks so they don't really have a choice. I doubt many other critics could manage the same thing.

It's pathetic really. All they needed was to make a game that worked and fanboys like myself would have lapped it up. No need for this fuckery.

Jim, do you think that the actions of the Publisher are heinous enough to warrant not purchasing this game out of principle. I saw your game play on your youtube channel and the game looked really good but after hearing this the whole thing leaves a bad taste in my mouth

So Jim how about plans to have early access to comment on your videos? Here are some rules based on this brilliant sponsored deal:
1. Tweet 7 times how you love the Jimquisition with the tag #Jimquisition4Ever
2. Make a livestream of you watching the video early.
3. Mention how funny the joke at 3:33 is.
4. Tell your livestream audience how distinct and unique's Jim's personality is.
5. Your early comment on the escapist thread must be approved 96 hours by Jim personally.
6. The comment must end with the phrase: "Thank God for Jim!"

So please PM Jim if you want to discuss this totally not shady sponsored Jimquistion deal.

Thank God for Jim!

Okay, I knew it was shady, but I had no idea it was that shady. Particularly stupid, considering how good the game is and you should all buy it.*

*This post is part of a paid brand deal with Warner Bros.
Not really

Now I am conflicted. The game is great, hell I never watched any let's plays or anything like that but I got it on release, and found it a blast. Why does WB feel the need to control video content so stringently and not just let the developer's effort shine through on its own? Is this insecurity, or general assholery?

I feel like I shouldn't have bought it since this was pretty shady of the publisher, but then I'd feel guilty for ignoring a good developer.

"A really good game"? Meh, mediocre for me at least. Combat is fun but gets repetitive fast and plot is not exactly breaking any new grounds. Also game kind of feels rushed and ends in a very painful sequel hook. And if you have read read the books and other lore you may lose some hairs to the degree which they take liberties with Tolkien universe. Lastly, it is a prequel. An Unforgivable sin.

While all above can be subjective, if what Jim describes is company policy, I'd say avoid the game like the plague.

Shame on anyone who agreed to deals like this. That's personal integrity out the window.

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