Harmonica Comments

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  • Strike Suit Zero dev reveals space combat game Fractured Space

  • Harmonica 22/10/2014

    I'm interested to see what route they go with this, as with all space combat games. If this game is all about huge lumbering ships and tactical decision making, and extremely fast paced decisive engagements, it could be something different.

    I'm still hankering for a developer to take a 'hard sci-fi' approach to it all, and really nail a game that does space combat as (theoretically) realistic as possible. As in, extreme long range engagements, massive focus on sensor arrays, remote installations, and less about dogfighting which will never be a thing ever. Space combat if it ever were a thing would be much like submarine combat where you're wanting to remain undetected until the moment you pull the trigger.
    Reply +2
  • Valve pulls game from Steam following dev's tweet threatening Gabe Newell

  • Harmonica 21/10/2014

    Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

    Good guy Valve cleaning up the industry one idiot at a time.
    Reply -1
  • Two discs "wasn't practical" for Halo: Master Chief Collection

  • Harmonica 20/10/2014

    @TheLastPixel The problem is not the packages it is the lack of proper broadband support in wide areas of many countries, including the UK, the US and countries across Europe. The average download speed in the UK for example is less than 8mbs even if many or all providers will 'offer' 8-50mbps. Reply +22
  • Harmonica 20/10/2014

    @skowhegan If it's possible for anyone its surely possible for 343 and the Halo franchise.

    This is the same series that rolled their own multiplayer interface back in the Xbox era, and (invented matchmaking and console chat and messaging in the process).
    Reply +6
  • Let's have more games that show rather than tell

  • Harmonica 16/10/2014

    @vijay_UK Shockingly I also remember carting the Civ II manual around when first getting to grips with the game.

    But even that thing pales in comparison to the Sim Earth 'bible' that basically taught the player everything they could need to know about the environment, biology, ecology, etc.. and then remembered there was a game part to it too and spent a few 100 pages on that.

    Never managed to play Sim Earth properly when I was a child but I would actually dig into that book on rainy days to read up on things.
    Reply 0
  • Harmonica 11/10/2014

    @Uncompetative If you're referring to EG in this comment (or Cartho is), didn't you read the glowing SoM review? They lauded it for its systems. In fact if I think back to that review I would sum it up with 'this game is fun because of its systems.'

    Really the fact that they're even writing this follow up piece with reference to SoM shows how much they enjoyed it and have been thinking about it recently. I am sure the developers are beaming.
    Reply +2
  • Harmonica 11/10/2014

    @jamesberg I am not sure that the playerbase that wants to study a game whilst playing is as small as you make out. In recent years there have been many complicated games that require 'on-the-job' study, and they are hugely popular (Dwarf Fortress or Dota, for example). I would argue that people want to play complex games where time invested in learning about the game actually gives them greater gameplay opportunities or allows them to better express themselves.

    I think this is more a case of developers not realising that these players exist and therefore not attempting to cater for them. Which, in a lot of cases given the style of game, is appropriate, but in other cases they could implement these kind of teaching mechanics inside the game world itself in any number of ways, and the game would benefit from it.

    For example, just imagine that SoM had an entirely optional guide the player could talk to, interact with, be led by, who talked them through mechanics in the game, whilst the player played the game alongside them (rather than continuously breaking them out of the experience with HUD elements and text dumps). Or imagine an RPG with a library that required the player to go to that library and pull out a few books to understand aspects of the game (essentially, something that TES games do very well, even though they don't always extend it to cover game mechanics). Two basic examples which a good developer could actually make into an interesting part of a game, but could be avoided at the same time if the player wanted to learn on their own.

    There are honestly so many ways that you can build a game where the player 'learns through doing' that really we should chastise developers for simplifying for the sake of avoiding this tuition.
    Reply +5
  • Civilization: Beyond Earth makes the space race a marathon effort

  • Harmonica 16/10/2014

    @sethmacias Belatedly - thanks, I'll give Pandora First a look :) Reply 0
  • Harmonica 11/10/2014

    AI still sounds dull, dumb and cheaty.

    Civ V - eventually - was a fun game despite its AI, but never because of it, and it was best played with human opponents (or human teams with AI), since the potential for strategic thinking was just much higher.

    We asked for better AI in both Civ IV and Civ V (and, well, the majority of 4X games that have appeared over the past decade) and it looks like we're going to be left wanting again (there are some exceptions with credible AI but they're never fantastic).

    I really want a dev to actually do the right thing and harness the ridiculous CPU time at their disposal (especially in turn based games) to make a smarter, nuanced AI opponent, and not simply rely on the cheap stuff that AIs do well (managing large forces, and efficient unit production) to provide the player a challenge.

    The lure of AC-redux is strong but I'm not sure it's strong enough that I want to play this before a years worth of patches and a price reduction.
    Reply +1
  • Microsoft rolls out Xbox One October system update

  • Harmonica 16/10/2014

    MKV support is really nice and surprising.

    I do wonder if that extends to correctly handling subtitles inside MKVs, and multi part linked MKVs, and so on.

    edit: also 'my consoles p is bigger than your consoles p' etc etc
    Reply +2
  • Lindsay Lohan steps up Rockstar legal battle over GTA5 character

  • Harmonica 11/10/2014

    Funny and sad at the same time. Lohan was a talented young actress and the industry ate her up and spat her out again. It's not her fault but this is what happens. Reply 0
  • What the hell is Gamechurch?

  • Harmonica 11/10/2014

    They don't want anything except for you to subconsciously buy into their cult.

    No such thing as a free ride.

    They could be the nicest people on the planet, and they may well be the nicest people on the planet - but that doesn't change how you should think about organisations like this.
    Reply +3
  • Halo 2 map Warlock becomes Warlord in Halo: The Master Chief Collection

  • Harmonica 09/10/2014

    Lockout is the best map they ever made, and Zanzibar and Blood Gulch are worthy enough. Not sure about the others.

    Warlock/Wizard was only ever a good map in Halo 1, it was fraught with issues in Halo 2 (along with being included in the patch that opened the game up to hackers for months), its perrenial remake status is pretty bizarre as its very much a product of its era, and doesn't really suit where they took the game after Halo. Ascension was a great Double Team map but very few people actually played that (best mode!), I don't know if they even support it any more. Sanctuary was a mess of BR and sniper shootouts, not a lot else going on (although it was always fun blitzing CTF or bomb in 30 seconds with a good sniper on your team).

    The obvious omissions are Beaver Creek/Battle Creek and Ivory Tower/Reflection. Those along with Lockout are up there with the best multiplayer maps ever designed for any game.

    Not that it matters. I think Halo is a series which the veterans have long since departed, and I'm not sure the current teenaged generation really notices it amidst Call of Duty and Battlefield or Destiny.
    Reply 0
  • Disney removes Tiny Death Star without telling the developer

  • Harmonica 07/10/2014

    @octavedoctor This might be true if these games weren't making an absolute killing, which they are.

    Nah, this is just a case of classic Disney top-down mis-management, which has been the case across all their various media offshots for the past decade (always remember they are the company that decided to meddle with LOST, and basically neutered it down to the bland family drama it became).
    Reply 0
  • Civ 4 designer swaps culture for commodities in Offworld Trading Company

  • Harmonica 02/10/2014

    One of the games I'm most looking forward to. I like how they're going at things differently; strategy games shouldn't always be about fiddly unit micro management. It will be nice to be able to play a game that still requires planning, intuition and execution as traditional RTSs, only doing it predominantly through an interface, as opposed to frantically flying around the game with hotkeys. It's been interesting reading about that paring down process they've gone through during development (interview on RPS earlier this year goes into more detail about that). Reply +1
  • FIFA 15 bug turns fancy sim into playground football

  • Harmonica 25/09/2014

    This just reminded me of indoor football mode in one of the older FIFAs, and now I'm sad. Reply 0
  • Starbound dev reveals co-op pirate game Wayward Tide

  • Harmonica 10/09/2014

    Nailed the Monkey Island homage, which is enough for anyone to look at it, but hopefully the gameplay does enough to justify that on its own terms. Reply +1
  • Microsoft pledges to replace batch of noisy Xbox One consoles

  • Harmonica 10/09/2014

    This exact thing happened to me with my launch console last year. The problem happens during the firmware update, that's the real obvious sign something is wrong. It's obviously a batch issue.

    They did replace it within a week, along with some games, and I haven't had any issues since. Quality control not great but MS customer service is usually excellent.
    Reply 0
  • Editor's blog: I'm leaving Eurogamer later this year

  • Harmonica 09/09/2014

    Better than Halo. Reply 0
  • Google refunding $19m to those whose kids bought in-app purchases

  • Harmonica 06/09/2014

    Please Google, you have money, pay for all these stupid peoples' mistakes.

    'It can't be OUR fault! Quick, sue someone!'

    Whatever happened to people taking some responsibility. If I were in their position I would treat losing the money as a learning experience. But these people will never learn.
    Reply -5
  • Dinosaur adventure The Stomping Land removed from sale on Steam Early Access

  • Harmonica 04/09/2014

    I'm not convinced it's dead, but it doesn't look good. That said, the game has always had glacial development because it's a tiny team working on it, and next to no updates aside from the weeks around the Early Access launch.

    Game only cost about 7 if you were savvy about it. Kick money to the developers, see what pans out. Everyone was hoping for a new BC. The early access launch was very messy, bleeding edge stuff, unfortunately. The idea of the game is solid, but perhaps too much for them to achieve.
    Reply 0
  • Why we need more developers like Zoe Quinn

  • Harmonica 30/08/2014

    No, games don't NEED to do anything.

    Let the developers hone their particular vision as best they can. Every player can individually decide whether it has merit to them, or not.

    If a developer wants to make a game about player empowerment, let them make that game, and good luck to them. Likewise any other goal a dev might have...
    Reply +66
  • Twitch vows: we won't bring audio recognition to live streams

  • Harmonica 08/08/2014

    Appreciate them rectifying some mistakes this soon, but at this point I still can see Twitch being effectively dead a year from now. Once the wind begins to blow in the other direction there's no force that can stop a userbase migrating to better more progressive services. Twitch was once that service but not any more.

    Let's remember Twitch is about broadcasting games and that they're still planning on muting VODs that simply contain game music is ridiculous. At that point you have to ask what the point is.

    They're conflating two things here, few would argue that in-game music can't be copyrighted, but at the same time, plenty of composers, developers and publishers do not have a problem with streamers playing their games and making videos. It's clear there needs to be a second 'whitelist' database which ignores music from games that the copyright holders/creators have designated as such.

    Additionally, I think it's pretty obvious that the future of this area should lie in separating out audio channels of the streamer and whatever music they are choosing to play. Adopt whatever flavour of the month music service they like and allow streamers to overlay music that way. When it comes to archiving broadcasts, if the music is not allowed, the music channel gets muted but the stream remains intact. Pretty obvious, no?

    Until then the service is on extremely shaky ground, and the fact that the DMCA is getting their grubby paws all over gaming related content is something people should indeed be upset about.
    Reply +1
  • Official custom game support for Dota 2 impresses modders

  • Harmonica 07/08/2014

    @Sciazs "VAMPIRISM PLS! PLSSSS"

    I'm with you there. This is the mod I most want to see 'ported' to Dota 2. I'm not sure my lua skills will do it justice right now but I'm sure someone will be along to create it soon enough (hell they probably already started work!).
    Reply 0
  • FIFA 15 has all 20 Premier League stadiums

  • Harmonica 07/08/2014

    This is legitimately great news, so tired of those prefab generic stadiums popping up every year.

    But I expect that the game will once again require the same routine of going through and hand-editing every team to actually play football in a style and tactic resembling that club. FIFA can actually present pretty amazing games of football if you take the time to do all this editing - it's a shame that the actual team working on the game don't bother (for example there's the perennial problem in their engine of having wingbacks and defenders that do absolutely zero during a game except hold a position - unless you put them on high attacking setups. Now all of a sudden they make great overlapping runs.)
    Reply +1
  • Somewhere in the multiverse exists a timeline where Mr Do! is as iconic as Mario

  • Harmonica 03/08/2014

    Of course a fantastic article about gaming joys from yesteryear would be invaded by copyright puritans in the comments section.

    Get a grip, honestly. If you made games like that you'd give your teeth to have people reminiscing about it 30 years later - let alone playing it.
    Reply +1
  • Rust dev angers fans by announcing new prototype Riftlight

  • Harmonica 28/07/2014

    The creators/showrunners of a single HBO show are by and large only working on that single show. That's how all encompassing those projects are. I can only imagine it should be the same for game devs, especially smaller indies.

    I purchased Rust, aware of it being early days, but expecting it to go somewhere. It was fun but I like the concept and I want to see it become an expansive game. If he ends up shoving it out the door completely unfinished I hope there is a backlash and people sour to early supporting of Facepunch projects. Trust is absolutely golden. Don't abuse it.

    And think long and hard about how these things come across. People are invested in Rust. They don't really want to hear about yet another pipedream.
    Reply +3
  • Valve adds thumbstick to latest Steam controller prototype

  • Harmonica 24/07/2014

    The trouble with the touch pads remains the same, there are certain completely essential stick movements that can't be replicated on the touch pad, and they also mean a loss of fidelity.

    The main one being, the fact that sticks recenter (more or less, depending on how old your pad is...), so you can always instantly get your thumb located on the stick to make a motion, or you always know exactly where the stick is in physical space after it has been moved because your thumb is on it (and because you just pushed it like so). These pads don't behave like that. This produces some really odd behaviour when you want to 'reaquire' where you think the 'stick' position is, but end up not pressing in the right place (because there is no stick, and there's no way of precisely pressing the right place), resulting in jerky motions and general imprecisness.

    Thus, this will just end up being a gimmick pad for a minority of their home-brew apps, or for devs porting things from tablets.

    Valve have this problem with reinventing the wheel for the sake of reinvention. We allow it, because half the time it leads them to doing really cool things, but this controller increasingly looking like a wasted exercise. Nobody will bother with it for 99% of games. The console manufacturers have spent millions refining the gamepad over the past decades leading to what we have now. Your flavour of modern gamepad is essentially a perfect control device for what we're doing with games right now.
    Reply +1
  • Xenonauts review

  • Harmonica 23/07/2014

    @varkdm Very belatedly - are you aware of OpenTTD? It's Transport Tycoon (Deluxe) rebuilt from the ground up. Once they nailed recreating the original they added in support for all kinds of mods of various complexity. Even the AI will give you a run for your money, but multiplayer is where it's at. Games can run for WEEKS on long-term servers, and you can manage your networks (which are greatly expanded) to the nth degree. Reply 0
  • Harmonica 04/07/2014

    Do people really consider those graphics to be poor? The technical quality of the art is superb, and producing these kind of assets is extremely time consuming (on the main reasons the development was so drawn out in the end). It's clinical, sure, but as befitting the era. Reply 0
  • Harmonica 03/07/2014

    Fair review but as a fan of the original series, and someone who spent many nights shivering with tension on those critical night missions a long time ago, it recaptures all of that - and more. It had a bumpy ride through development but honestly it has turned out a solid game, and I'm very happy to have supported it early on.

    Review didn't really touch on the tactics that you can pour into playing the game, on the base management globe view level, or the battle maps themselves. This is what people were crying out for and didn't really get in the otherwise decent XCOM game: the ability to fine tune your planning and tactics and go different routes. Tank and heavy weapons? Rapid response scout team? Traditional army setup? Beserkers filled with explosives? Patient sniper team? You can make all of these work. The dev team has taken the approach of 'don't reinvent the wheel' with the classic mechanics (time units and so on), but the tweaks they have made have improved the combat a lot. And on the globe view - base placement, setup, research order, and all that. This all matters way more than XCOM. I'd say the AI - though not mindblowing - is just as good as the XCOM game if not better simply due to the more complex map design.

    Just play out your first night mission and listen to those noises. It's very dark out there and you're all alone and it's all going to go horribly wrong - maybe.

    As for lack of map variation - this is one of the great strengths of this title over the orignals, all the unofficial remakes, and the recent XCOM game. The editor is extremely powerful and will no doubt fill your hard drive with hundreds of variants (all of which, really, produce their own limitless variants), so if you take the time to download them, or map packs, or produce your own (it's fun!) you can cure one of the biggest nagging problems with the series' formula.

    Can't really recommend this strongly enough to strategy fans.
    Reply +7
  • UK changing approach to illegal torrents

  • Harmonica 22/07/2014

    @KingFunkIII It's trivial for content producers to make available their media on day of release to anyone around the world. The only reasons it doesn't happen, and we see huge delays of content arriving in legal formats, are commercial reasons. They want to milk people for money so they don't do release day parity and they overcharge.

    Actually the options right now for a lot of US shows are to wait a year, at which point you have to pay something like 40-50 for a 13 episode season. So not only are you being pushed out of the cultural bubble as far as watching things go, you're then being overcharged (even relative to maintaining subscription to watch the shows near the actual release).

    So, yes, content producers push people into piracy and this hopefully is a first step on the path to awareness as to how people want to buy and view their content.

    If HBO for example created a worldwide subscription streaming/download service for their content at prices comparable to Netflix or their own cable channel in America, they would be drowning in money. But they don't, for reasons of laziness or simply in bed too much with TV distributors around the world.
    Reply 0
  • Harmonica 22/07/2014

    @Sunsprie I think it is much less about feeling guilty and more about feeling good about supporting content producers if that's what people choose to do. Ie, less stick and more carrot which is completely entwined with this initiative. Reply 0
  • Harmonica 22/07/2014

    This is an incredibly positive thing. I almost can't believe that it's happening given the parties involved, and the government we live under, but hats off to them.

    This is exactly the approach that is needed.

    Now, can I suggest the next thing that needs to happen is for the media producers themselves to provide the access to their products in the formats that people want. That means any format of media for music, mp3, mp4, aac, flac, etc etc, at various bitrates; and for TV shows or films, that means various resolutions and formats from 3gp through low resolution flash video, to 720p, 1080p and higher h264 video in mp4, mkv or other containers, at the correct framerate (24/23.976fps or 29.976fps for US content, 25fps for a majority of 'live' UK content etc) and at a reasonable price.

    When these things happen they will see a huge upsurge in people buying these things.

    They will see through things like this that the internet is not something that needs to be draconianly legislated upon and governed, it can be a platform which is good to producers and customers alike.
    Reply 0
  • Google Play removing "free" label for F2P games with in-app purchases

  • Harmonica 21/07/2014

    To the extent that this might lead people to investigate the game a little more prior to downloading, it's a good thing, but I think the general public is wising up and we're past the point where anyone can claim to be surprised that a little innocent app has cost them x hundred down the line - or to not monitor the apps their younger children might be playing.

    If anything, the removal of this label just means that the developers can no longer be a convenient scapegoat for the weak-willed. I mean, really, what's this about? The worst of these IAP-laded games might be stingy with their gameplay and conniving with the way they ask people to spend, but that's about the worst of their ills. Don't like it, don't give them their money. Close the app. Move on. People just need to learn to manage their play time, which means knowing what games are worthy of their attention and patronage.

    This is of course something trad gamers have long since learnt, and I think the public needs to go through the same teething process.
    Reply -2
  • Kickstarter-funded Yogventures canned, backers given Steam key for another game instead

  • Harmonica 18/07/2014

    @stevengsaunders That he spent that kind of money alone says enough, really. I'm sympathetic to the guy, but that's not a smart decision.

    Honestly though, they still received a lot of money, and devs who work for peanuts have produced, well, actual products (but also vastly superior games).
    Reply +1
  • Harmonica 18/07/2014

    Neither Yogscast or Winterkewl come out of this looking great, but if you let things like this put you off Kickstarter or backing games early as a whole, that is a shame. The devs that do it right justify the process. I've backed a few dozen games on Kickstarter and elsewhere during their development and the overwhelming majority have either completed or are well on their way to being completed. I don't feel disappointed with the quality of any of them, and investing early is what allows these games to exist. The indie boom time that we're experiencing would not be a thing without this investing climate.

    All it takes is a little investigation prior to backing a project to feel happy at that point that the project is in good hands and has a reasonable chance of turning into something. Are the devs credible? Are their goals realistic given the money they are asking for? Are they people you want to support with your money? etc etc. If you make what you feel is a good decision at the time, that's what matters.
    Reply 0
  • Starcraft, Guild Wars and State of Decay designer reveals MOBA Gigantic

  • Harmonica 16/07/2014

    @Physically_Insane Yeah there's absolutely no money and no interest in this genre of gaming, except for that rinky dink $10m tournament that's going on right now.

    They got no clue!

    Even with the absolutely bare minimum of committment the genre is a money pot, and with actual passion and innovation from a developer there is huge potential for new games. We've had, what, over two decades of FPSs and they're still making them. We'd had two or three single proper professional mobas in Dota 2, LoL and HoN, plenty of straight up clones that add nothing new, and a few that show hints of potential without really doing much (yet).

    They've barely scratched the surface of what is possible within this style of game. Any gamer worth their salt would be absolutely gagging to see what will happen if game designers get really inventive with the pre-existing rules.

    I know it's hip to be square but gamers bemoaning MOBAs (or whatever you want to call them) are their own worst enemy. Would you really rather they just stick to 'cookie-cutter war FPS' or 'Tolkienesque fantasy MMO'? MOBAs remaing a breath of fresh air and are still absolutely something new that we can get excited about. We just need devs to be confident enough to mix things up more.
    Reply +1
  • Harmonica 16/07/2014

    There's more than enough room for another game in the genre providing it puts its own original spin on things. The art style is fantastic and fresh enough, let's see if that translates to the gameplay itself. Reply 0
  • Maia creator ponders two "game two" concepts, but which will he make?

  • Harmonica 11/07/2014

    Simon is a good guy so I know he's just talking about future projects for reasons of discussion rather than cutting Maia development short. Maia itself continues to evolve fairly rapidly, and he's right - it's at the point where it's close to being playable in the medium-long term rather than just as a (very cool) tech demo. Reply +1
  • Dota 2 mod turns the MOBA into an isometric Mario Kart

  • Harmonica 08/07/2014

    Honestly I'd appreciate if they actually added, y'know, carts (even just putting the seige catapult model below the heroes would suffice for now!). And the heroes should actually be able to use their abilities during the race. Seems a bit lacklustre so far.

    Either way, I'm glad custom mods are starting to become a thing in the build up for it actually being added to Dota 2 as a proper mode (later this year probably). Line Defense is already a fun mod.
    Reply +1
  • Survival sim Gods Will Be Watching release date set this month

  • Harmonica 03/07/2014

    Slightly stomach churning, but that's not always a bad thing. Can't wait to play it. Reply +1
  • Distant Worlds: Universe review

  • Harmonica 30/06/2014

    Well, DW is a decent game, but these boutique prices aren't really appropriate within the indie market. Matrix Games have a habit of charging this way. It's just pretty miserly. This game has been around for 3 or 4 years now. Kind of weird it's only just getting a review. I've seen it available for much less than those prices, though.

    That said, progression in this genre is kind of glacial, so there's not really been much to really push things forward in the intervening years. Endless Space and Stardrive are more recent, slightly more polished games that added some new elements, without being particularly revolutionary. Both of which came out long after Distant Worlds and they are available for a song on Steam.

    Personally I have more pinned on the likes of Aurora 2, if/when it arrives.

    Aurora itself is still to my mind the game that does the best job of simulating the absolute vastness of time and space alongside the potential of future technologies. To compare to Distant Worlds, if you might spend a year or two setting up a new planet or army in that game, in Aurora, simply locating, traveling too, and engineering a planet to be hospitable could take decades, but will probably take upwards of hundreds of years. If you like spreadsheet games, long-form strategy and space it's amazing (oh, and it costs you 0).
    Reply 0
  • Ending the Minecraft fantasy

  • Harmonica 24/06/2014

    @TheDepressed "Do you really believe that if someone has made what you deem 'enough' money from their work then they shouldn't be allowed to get any more?"

    Sorry for belated response here.

    I think that ultimately the market decides what enough is. So by that logic, devs can re-release their game over and over on more platforms, or update it over years, or remaster the content. Whatever they like. People will buy it or they won't. I might not agree that porting their game instead of making new games is the best use of their time, but I wouldn't want to stop them.

    But I think going after Youtube users or streamers is stepping over the line in terms of where they expect their income to come from. All those users have already paid them for their game (leaving aside the piracy issue), but to ask for a cut of monetised gaming videos is like charging for a second continuous license for the same game.

    What makes this behavious less defensible in my eyes is that all these users putting the gameplay out there are actually doing the job of publicising the devs game for them. They make game sales happen. Youtube is my first port of call if I want to see a game in action, played out by a handful of gamers, before I make a buying decision. If they are adding their own commentry or whatever to make the game even more entertaining, that's just even better (from a sales perspective).

    This is the reason why popular content producers get games thrown at them. They convert views to game sales at a ridiculous rate.

    For an indie dev, to go after one of your best sources of revenue, is just idiotic, and strikes me as fundamentally mean-spririted and lazy. Fish makes a lot of being forced out of the gaming industry but the truth is he must have lost his creative passion, but he wants to blame it on others. So be it.
    Reply 0
  • Harmonica 21/06/2014

    @TheDepressed Your examples are not analogous to the content put out on YouTube.

    If you broadcast a movie at home on a projector you're not adding anything to the content, and the content exists in an unmutable form.

    If you record a voiceover, you're adding something of your own, but the words have not changed. You're in a grayer area than showing movies on a big screen, but owing to the older and established laws regarding fiction and screenplays you're probably still going to fall foul of some copyright law if you attempt to sell that performance.

    What's the unmutable content of games media? The assets of the game environment, cut scenes, and so on. If you recorded all the cut scenes from your favourite game and monetised them on YouTube you arguably should fall foul of copyright law because you're not adding anything original to the content.

    But that's where the comparisons end. The rest of everything shown on a playthrough on YouTube is fairly obviously user-authored and entirely original. Nobody else could create that particular playthrough. Add in voice overs and cameras and you're in safe territory.

    ...Until this all goes to court and we see just who the money-grubbing elements of the industry are.

    When Fish speaks, it's out of self-interest. He perceives himself as having lost out, as having been victimised, in the way Fez was produced and released, and all his commentry on games stems from this perspective. No doubt he would love to grab more money for something he made years ago just like all the cronies in the music and publishing industries.

    Just put this in perspective: sucessful indies in this era are making more than enough money to cover the costs of 1) the game they just made 2) the costs associated with making another game. Why should they be allowed to have a second bite of the cherry? That's just incredibly bad form.
    Reply +5
  • Harmonica 21/06/2014

    @TheDepressed No it's completely unrelated to what Phil Fish said the other day, because Phil Fish does not create the things that are being monetised. Reply +2
  • Harmonica 21/06/2014

    This was only as much of a business decision as it was a decision made in the best interests of the players. If server ops cannot afford $100, they shouldn't be running a server. And if they can't think up a way to charge for entry, on a popular server, or to accept donations (which would easily cover costs), they're probably not very bright and they should let others take over.

    Monetising servers was a free-ride, they had it easy for absolutely ages, but they were the bad guys and it's good they are now forced to change their attitudes. The best servers I have ever played on were free and donation based and they had all the community support and fancy gubbins that any of those p2p servers had - they just didn't rip off their playerbase.

    As usual, Notch and Minecraft devs heads are firmly screwed on and they're treading the right line, but they get a lot of grief for it because gamers are fucking stupid as a rule.
    Reply +15
  • Bungie confident Destiny will run smoothly at launch

  • Harmonica 24/06/2014

    History has proven that games publishers are all too happy to have their games go down for days or weeks, rather than over-provide just for that initial onslaught. This is Activision. All publicity is good publicity when it comes to game launches.

    If anyone can do it, Bungie can - but outside of hugely staggered entry times for everyone wanting to play it day one, I'm not sure how they will pull it off. Simply throwing more backend at the problem doesn't solve things. All the millions of users can't fit down the pipe at once.
    Reply +1
  • Hyperkin Retron 5 review

  • Harmonica 08/06/2014

    I'm tempted by this only for the space saving since managing a dozen old consoles is a bit of a chore. And it would be nice to have a reason to start buying carts again, since old hardware has a tendency of dying out a year or two after you aquire it.

    However, in practice in the past few years I've been using a SCART to HDMI converter to use the majority of my old consoles and they look great, the controllers are great, and you get that buzz of authenticity from it being the real deal. Good upscaling adapters like that only cost about 30, too. Yeah, it's not quite perfect like playing it 1:1 on a CRT back in the day, but I would wager it's a more accurate representation than software emulation, which always has tendency to look too clean (you will do very well to scale an image pixel perfect using an emulator).

    Hows about some comparison shots of the real consoles versus the upscaled output... or is it really THAT good that there's no difference?
    Reply 0
  • Get 66% off FIFA World Cup at GAME if you're called Geoff Hurst

  • Harmonica 03/06/2014

    @imagonnawin It got a news story onto EG didn't it? That's your publicity. It's not just about selling to people with a footballing name... Reply 0