All About Syphadeus
So Diablo 3 came out yesterday - a moment long anticipated by many a gamer. Only it didn't properly release yesterday did it? Everybody who cares about the game knows about the server problems it's had. Not only that, but a certain game bug that makes the title unplayable if you're a particular character class and decide to equip a shield.
Frankly this situation stinks. Even if it's all sorted now, it still stinks.
I went onto the Blizzard site to see how much this game cost to download it £44.99 - that's like $70 dollars and a heck of a lot more than what games usually cost to buy from a store or online. That's more than a new console game costs to buy in a store and as many know, console games have a big extra disc printing cost associated with them that the console manufacturer slaps on. That's why PC titles are usually cheaper.
What's worse is that to purchase a physical disc and have this posted to me from Amazon it's £32.99 which is a hell of a lot cheaper. This is Blizzard being very greedy and not even having the product to show for it on release day.
If you're going to rip people off the least you can do is spend some money on servers so that your unwitting punters can actually enjoy the product that they've paid over the odds for. People seem to keep jumping to their defence and rationalising the server problem by citing previous releases which have had the exact same problem. How is that an excuse? If it's happened before aren't you meant to learn from the problems so they're not repeated? You don't take your customer's money and then expect them to know better because you crapped out last time.
So, after over a year since the first (and only) piece of DLC for Mass Effect was released, this week finally saw a tease of information over at Bioware Towers' Twitter. This information had been long in the coming. Not to mention the bevy of rabid PC fans still waiting for a PC patch to get their copy to work without crashing every few minutes - the last word of which was in January this year.
So, I admit, I was rather excited. Until things started to go wrong that is. BioWare's community forum has been rather busy of late, mostly with people complaining about this lack of information. It got worse when the Community Manager Chris Preistley hinted that what he'd put on Twitter wasn't "an announcement of an announcement" and that it was merely a hunch.
Well, it turned out to be something of a red herring. He's officially apologised and confirmed that not only is there no information to be released at this point but that "there won't be any for a while". How horribly disappointing. This is a major faux pas on BioWare's part. Coupled with a complete media blackout on DLC and PC patches for the best part of six months it goes to show that BW handles games with panache and community management with about as much flair as a dead chimp in a dinner jacket. Chris Priestley is practically infamous in that community for being the man everyone loves to hate. I dare say he's the Doug Lombardi of BioWare when it comes to putting his foot in it.
Of course, I don't claim to be an expert in community management or PR but there are some things in life that are just there to be avoided. Being suggestive about information in view of starving fans, only to thoroughly fail in delivery being one of them.
Oh well... best get back to working toward a level 60 Shepard.
I was really looking forward to getting my mitts on Ghostbusters for the 360. I did kind of wonder why a lot of the online retailers were posting the UK release date as the end of October though...
Until just now, when I learned that SCEE has a timed exclusivity deal in Europe so that it's a PS3/PS2 exclusive here until Autumn. What a massive slap in the face that is! It seems really shifty too. I know from reading reviews that the 360 touts the PS3 iteration in the visual department, albeit only very slightly.
But really... Ghostbusters? Is this what Sony thinks it's going to take to get more people to buy a PS3? A game that I'm stoked about for sure, but one that hardly espouses the so-called exclusive benefits of the platform. Yeah, it's received ok-ish reviews, which most hardcore gamers know is a miracle for a movie-license game, but I'm pretty sure it's not going to break any sales records. That's a certainty now that it's exclusive to Sony's overpriced jewel.
I want a PS3. But I want one so I can watch Blu-ray videos and so that I can play games like Killzone, Uncharted and INFamous - not because I want to play Ghostbusters, which is rightfully a multi-platform game. Sony has soured this release for Europe by doing this. They need to pull their fingers out and lower the price, instead of pinching multi-platform games at the last second for a bit of extra kudos. This move is less about servicing their fans and more about throwing sand into the eyes of the competition.
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