In response to "Global Growing Pains" from The Escapist Forum: Actually, marketing and economics can still be reasons to region lock titles. A publisher may want to focus on major regions at a time without worrying that they could be cannibalising their sales in the other regions. They may want to see how a title performs in one region before spending money launching it elsewhere. The reasons you give (and accept) for Nintendo holding back their launch in different regions are still valid today.
But yes, it sucks to be the consumer due to regionalisation of titles. Especially if it is a niche title that isn't going to be launched in your region, or is going to have a good long delay before appearing.
There's a massive topic on the Steam Powered forums that's full of people (Especially Australians) lamenting how games they want won't be released in their regions (Or, in some cases, how they could pick up a game in one of their local stores or on D2D - but not on Steam). Region locking is obviously one of the reasons why people pirate games.
In response to "Achilles' Phat Lewtz" from The Escapist Forum: You left out that the Greeks often engaged in friendly PvP in between battles ;)
Interesting comparison, and highly appealing to my inner elitist literature geek. Also nice that it makes MMO players look more educated, or at least on the same level as the rest of the world. We all want the epic lootz, our loot is just shinier and have cooler names. And it's y'know... fictional.
All I could think of was the inevitable comparison to Helen being the "e-ho who launched a thousand guild drama posters". heh.
Nice read. I studied Classical Greek in high school as my second language (don't ask) and found the Iliad to be very relevant to what you're talking about. There's a lot to be said about the perception of excellence, but also of the idea of heroism achievements as well. Achievement systems in MMOs, such as the robust system in WAR's Tome of Knowledge or WoW's upcoming achievements idea, are at the core of the appeal of getting that "phat lewt". The gear you have is not just a marker of excellence, it's also the visual marker of your progression of achievement in your game of choice. PvE raiding in WoW, with its tiered sets, appeals to this need better than any MMO so far, regardless of your opinion of the game.
To the Greeks, conquering Troy became more than just a matter of regaining Agamemmnon's honor. It became a goal to an end, a way to tell the world "we did this", or in better terms for the article, "we pwnz0red u in PvP, QQ more nubs" XD