Harmonica Comments

Page 1 of 23

  • 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
  • Why Xbox One's ambitious media strategy failed

  • Harmonica 17/05/2014

    Not even a year into its lifecycle... I think this article is a tad premature given how all recent consoles have evolved over time. Reply -1
  • Minecraft maker Notch clarifies "Mojang to disband in 10 years" reports

  • Harmonica 09/05/2014

    @Perjoss It was promising but got absolutely crushed by Hearthstone when that went into beta. Victim of circumstance. Reply 0
  • Harmonica 09/05/2014

    "Some took this to indicate Mojang may only have 10 years left"

    Some people need to re-take reading comprehension classes.
    Reply +1
  • The fall of Towns

  • Harmonica 09/05/2014

    @null I don't think Castle Story has been given up, but development has been absolutely glacial - at least in terms of what has been added to the version that backers have access to on Steam. Essentially zero meaningful updates since it was added to Steam a very long time ago.

    The devs are doing stuff but none of that seems to get added to the available version. I used to read their blogs fairly regularly but for sanity's sake had to file Castle Story under vaporware until there's a major change. It's a shame. It looked like a promising spin on the sandbox/management genre.

    Actually - the best thing that has come out of Castle Story getting funded is them tipping people off to Sang-Froid, which is a lovely game.
    Reply 0
  • Harmonica 09/05/2014

    I don't really have a problem with the development team's behaviour, they put their time in, and their misfortune was launching before Early Access. Even on Early Access peoples' expectations as far as in-development games go are ridiculous.

    It's possible SMP's experience is what lead Valve to developing that platform later.

    And really, let's be honest, Towns was always a DF clone, it didn't really bring much more to the table than aping the basic features. From the video Dwelvers sadly looks to be doing the same for DK.
    Reply +1
  • Nintendo refuses to allow same-sex relationships in Tomodachi Life

  • Harmonica 08/05/2014

    Nintendo in still kind of being the bad guy shocker...

    Really no excuses for a 'playful' lifestyle game to not represent all possible outlooks of those playing the game. As the article says, by not going the extra mile, by assuming that one size can fit all, they're just betraying their lack of awareness/social exposure.

    Once again we can point to indie games like Stardew Valley whose devs realise, from the outset, that even in a virtual world, allowing the player to represent themselves is absolutely vital - even if in that case, being a one person outfit, it adds a non-trivial amount of time to develop that content.
    Reply -1
  • Fancy more pirating after AC4? Here's Steam Early Access title Caribbean!

  • Harmonica 01/05/2014

    Looks good but that's a moderately large price for a M&B mod, so it will have to go some to justify it. Would seem more fair if there weren't absolutely huge mods for that game that are free. Reply +1
  • Free-to-play Xbox 360 battler Happy Wars headed to Steam

  • Harmonica 25/04/2014

    Thanks Eurogamer for this news which is completely irrelevent to Europe. Reply 0
  • Entering the Avatar Machine, VR's next big step

  • Harmonica 21/04/2014

    Interesting article, but anyone who has played games for the majority of life would have long reached the same conclusion. It's one of those things where scientists set themselves on the path to proving the absolutely bleeding obvious, and everyone says 'yeah, that's nice, what next?' I'm happy that they're now on the 'what's next' part, which surely has positive contributions to make to medicine, art, gaming etc.

    Have to disagree with the opening paragraph here, though:
    "No matter how immersed you become...your mind stays firmly on the sofa, fully aware that your hands are holding a controller."

    This is not true, for exactly the same reasons as the article goes onto explore. People are easily detached from their real physical self. Only some low level part of them is 'aware' (of the controller, sofa), the rest is fully attached to the avatar in the videogame. To all intents and purposes that avatar is now 'them', someone else is holding the controller. If you're conscious about real world things while playing games, those are very different games to the most popular types of immersive games.

    I imagine that the more esoteric strategy games don't offer the same amount of detachment for the player, since they're not so much embodying an avatar on the screen, as a viewpoint in the void between game and player. Would be interesting to think about where the action-RTS games such as Dota position the player, given that they are (mostly) controlling a single avatar, but from a godlike perspective.
    Reply +2
  • EA's MOBA Dawngate is in open beta

  • Harmonica 09/04/2014

    @dr_lha MOBA is the term Riot invented to describe the genre of games that LoL fits into, Multiplayer Online Battle Arena. Which is basically analagous to 'ARTS' (action RTS), the genre that Dota popularised (though a lot of people won't be happy drawing a straight comparison).

    Basically tower defense, creeps, lanes, pushing, heroes, all that good stuff.
    Reply +2
  • Harmonica 09/04/2014

    The game looks a lot better in reality than the trailer suggests. I thought the graphics were going to be really zany and outdated but they're not bad, and the game has a style which is sort of in between Smite and Dota.

    It's fun enough to play, but not sure it is bringing anything new to the party yet. The hero design at least is better than other recent new MOBA attempts, but the map feels a little generic in the recent tradition of LoL clones.

    As a Dota player the controls are a little fussy, even after switching things from smart casting to (sort of) click->cast style control there are some oddities in how abilities are used. I also miss my screen grab. But at least you can move the map to the correct corner of the screen!

    edit: I will add that there are some minor things on the UXE front that are quite nice. Ability to pick a role before the game, which grants different bonuses appropriately, is interesting. And after the match, there is the chance to select players who you feel improved the game experience, which is a nice touch for potentially pushing people towards good behaviour.
    Reply +2
  • Cut the Rope dev hopes to cancel King's "candy" trademark

  • Harmonica 27/03/2014

    @Elias289 85% of 4 billion is also quite a lot. Reply -1
  • UK video game tax breaks approved

  • Harmonica 27/03/2014

    I'm not sure it's entirely culturally beneficial if we end up receiving a raft of twee Anglophile nonsense purely because the finance is slanted in that direction. Legislature really has no place stipulating what the content of creative works should be. Laughable.

    And as for restoring the UK to a great developer nation, pretty sure our chief export is still videogames and our videogames still sell absolute bucketloads globally (especially if you rope in things like GTA - which you probably shouldn't).
    Reply -2
  • Respawn locks Titanfall cheaters into "the Wimbledon of aimbot contests"

  • Harmonica 27/03/2014

    @arcam But the players themselves are permanently tainted, and all their friends if they have any will also know they are a cheater. Getting people to realise that cheating is shameful and that people won't want to play with them is the main purpose.

    And if people want to purchase another copy of the game on a new account (assuming it doesn't attach to their IP), then I am sure EA have no problem with that.
    Reply +16
  • First Sacred 3 gameplay video

  • Harmonica 19/03/2014

    Sacred 2 was honestly brilliant, worlds away from the disappointment of D3 and it came out years before. I'm pretty excited about this.

    "more colourful - more cheery" sums it up well, which isn't a bad thing. The map design was vivid and adventurous, and there was a lot of humour in the writing. The best part though was the actual leveling process, which in proper rpg tradition offered pretty powerful builds which you could ruin if you didn't think your skill choices through first. It was sort of doing what Path of Exile does - but much better and with less passive grinding.
    Reply 0
  • Asymmetrical competitive roguelike Crawl looks bloody, brilliant

  • Harmonica 05/03/2014

    @sarcasticjones It's not easy to do good pixel art, and if it's cheap it's only because the artists themselves are nice people who will work for peanuts. Reply +3
  • Harmonica 05/03/2014

    Sounds amazing, and counter-coop games are a relatively rarity, so I can't wait to try this.

    Only disappointment is that it's local only, which is unfortunately a bit of a limitation too far (especially on PC). Netcode really is an absolute must.
    Reply 0
  • Warner Bros. working on Minecraft movie

  • Harmonica 01/03/2014

    A live action film taking the core gameplay and translating it literally to reality on the screen, would certainly be something. A group of miners and builders surving a hostile landscape and competing with rival factions for the great riches deep, deep, down, etc etc.

    You'd need quite a talent at the helm to ensure it wasn't entirely risible though.

    I'm sure Hollywood is thinking more along the lines of a souped up CGI version of the game, with colourful whacky characters, etc etc.
    Reply 0
  • Has Microsoft fixed the Xbox One scaler?

  • Harmonica 17/02/2014

    I really wish they would fix the terrible gamma issues on Killer Instinct. Best exclusive launch title of the two platforms, potentially a great title for the fighting game genre (if it continues to be supported and enhanced), and it's currently languishing with overly dark visuals - on top of the already highly stylised in-game contrast.

    Also, I agree with a lot of posters here, whilst sharpening textures or the overall image after the fact is generally something you'd want to avoid, in place of sharper, cleaner original graphics, you can upscale or process images in a way that enhances the gameplay, without image loss. Upscale enhancement is not a dirty word in this era (has not been since custom Home Media Centers took off in a big way) and it can bring huge performance gains. What we see with the updated image is an actual loss of fidelity that may make it harder (and/or uncomfortable) to play certain titles.

    Not entirely impressed that the console continues to be a work in progress, but with the TitanFall beta generally seeming pretty underwhelming I think they have longer now to get it right before better games come along (I own the console, I pretty much bought it for TitanFall but now am looking to other titles further into the future).
    Reply 0
  • Prison Architect alpha review

  • Harmonica 13/02/2014

    This is one the few early-access games that has genuinely improved month on month (and improved a lot). It's Introversion so I have no doubt that in time it will be a compelling classic in the vein of their previous games. Reply +1
  • Court favours Valve in not allowing digital content resells

  • Harmonica 07/02/2014

    It remains one of the few things still blotting Valve's copybook as distributor demigods.

    They've hinted at going in the direction of resales in the past, they might have been forced into it had Microsoft's proposed digital re-distro thing taken off in a big way. The account sharing feature (that nobody uses) was probably them testing the water.

    I'm not too pessimistic, they've shown a lot of love for community trading and marketplaces; I think that Steam will move in this direction EVENTUALLY.
    Reply +10
  • A fantastic voyage: The making of Microcosm

  • Harmonica 02/02/2014

    Hmmm, I think I'd probably give more plaudits to Myst. That was considered the CD drive seller at the time. Reply 0