spekkeh

Sea of Thieves will let you set your crew to private

spekkeh

2 weeks ago

Talk about a missed opportunity not to be able to set it to "privateer".
4 2

Why I don't understand YouTube: A middle-aged woman writes

spekkeh

3 weeks ago

@ithis singular: a brook.

A brook is like a stream. Or a creek. Might be similar to a spring, but obviously not a gully or a ditch, duh.
7 0

spekkeh

3 weeks ago

No, not the thing about how the literal translation of James Van Der Beek is "James Of The Creek." 
...



I'm Dutch and never even put two and two together.
16 0

Welcome to the new Eurogamer

spekkeh

1 month ago

Wow, erm, I hope I can still find the text between the advertisements.
(though it appears advertisement specific. The main page was all World of Tanks, this article is a lot easier on the eyes).

Not a big fan of the font though. Is it non-native? It looks kind of blurry.
14 0

Outer Wilds is a game about exploring a solar system stuck in an endless 20-minute time loop

spekkeh

1 month ago

First time I'm hearing about it. Sounds amazing!
2 0

Bravo Team review - an astonishingly bad VR shooter from a team that should know better

spekkeh

2 months ago

I like the idea of GIFs, but I also like to read EG on my commute while on a data plan. Why not webm?
11 3

Nintendo Labo lets you see through the Joy-Con's hidden camera

spekkeh

2 months ago

@TheStoneRoses

Hmmm HD Rumble in the bath. And if you use the red joycon you get a free colonoscopy.

Wait what.
5 0

spekkeh

2 months ago

The games are a LOT more involved than I initially thought, and I was already on board. Scanning the environment to make your own racing tracks is all kinds of genius (in before hundreds of conspicuously phallus shaped racing tracks). Like I wanted to get it for my kids, even though they're too young and would probably trash it, but now it seems I should actually keep the cardboard contraptions safe for longer because the games seem like proper fun too.
This is now my most hyped game. What a world.
19 0

Nintendo finally confirms the truth about Toad's head

spekkeh

2 months ago

Nintendo stock was -5% this morning.

Warren Buffhat was not amused.
2 0

Jelly Deals: £10 off a £50 spend at Amazon for one day only

spekkeh

3 months ago

Cool! I still need to get Yakuza 0 and Resident Evil 7.

Total of your order £49.99

SON OF A...
7 1

RollerCoaster Tycoon fans hit out at Atari over controversial Switch port crowdfunder

spekkeh

3 months ago

An investment with a clause that ostensibly makes it possible to funnel all the returns away to family members, prior debts and travel entertainment sure smells of a sound investment.
54 0

David Cage and Quantic Dream "shocked" by allegations of unhealthy studio culture

spekkeh

3 months ago

I think this lad culture is problematic and companies should strive to do better and be more inclusive. However, am I the only one who's a bit annoyed that the focus is always on some bad jokes and incidental off the cuff bigoted remarks, and everyone just shrugs at the standard 60 hour workweeks, workers being glared at if they leave before 11pm, lack of overtime pay and HR who doesn't listen to complaints? Media always seem to focus on the incidents rather than the actual structural working conditions, and therefore nothing ever changes (this lad culture is in turn because it takes a special kind of "man" to not want to be with his children during the week).
24 2

PUBG becomes Xbox One sensation surpassing 3 million players in a month

spekkeh

3 months ago

I think the pack in PUBGs should be counted sales as they usually do, but I still think players "and therefore sales" is weird. What about game sharing among multiple accounts?
15 5

Kinect was amazing - in a museum

spekkeh

4 months ago

I'm late to this article so probably nobody reads my comment but I want to say bang on Donlan.

Myself and a lot of my colleagues are actually really sad over the end of Kinect. Saw some tearful eulogies across my Facebook feed haha. It may have sucked for games, and I would never have got it for my house, but it was a great tool to prototype interesting new ideas for our students. It creates a little theater stage in everyday locations ripe for ephemeral moments of performance play. And because it was easy to develop for (after openframeworks) it was a real, ah, game changer.

As such it's a bit strange that Microsoft wants to court creatives, and here they have something that gets embraced by them, and then they kill it. I guess money always talks louder.

By the way, this probably sounds like elitist snobbery (because it is), but Donlan talking casually about Chris Milk is why Eurogamer is a cut above all the other gaming websites.
1 0

Eurogamer readers' top 50 games of 2017

spekkeh

4 months ago

1. BotW
2. Mario Odyssey
5. Nier Automata

15 2

Eurogamer's games of 2017: The big debate

spekkeh

4 months ago

Also Re: Edith Finch. I know there are a couple of young dads among the editors of Eurogamer. Was I the only one bothered by

having to kill multiple young kids? I can imagine you wanting to make them part of the narrative, but having to push on yourself on the swing or the bathtub kind of rubbed me the wrong way. Felt a bit exploitative. Still a great game mind. Just not very nice for young parents like me (obviously not all games have to be nice so I'm slightly conflicted here.)
3 2

spekkeh

4 months ago

@Spetzomancer That seems a bit dramatic. Based on what even? You'll always have individuals you agree more or less with.
4 1

spekkeh

4 months ago

@Rack


It feels like it would have been REALLY easy to throw in a couple dozen things worth discovering into Breath of the Wild which would have dramatically improved the feeling of exploration.

They did the hard part of making a vast world to explore with interesting systems and then didn't spend a tiny bit of time on rewarding it
Rewards are the least interesting thing about games though. (Unless you're a gamification expert who doesn't play any games.) It's the process itself that should be intrinsically rewarding, not some extrinsic doodad at the end. Even then, in Breath of the Wild you can set out to discover stables, towers, special horses, environmental puzzles (circular peninsula, eventide, rain area, shadow domain, etc etc), memories, Kass, lynel and other big monster trophies for the balloon guy, hidden towns (lurelin, tarry), giant fairies, horse God, tribute to Iwata, race tracks (mountain, desert), mountaineering caches, monster nests, divine beasts, a plethora of little town quests, hidden temples, Dragon sites, natural springs, that Guardian den, master sword and Hylian shield, Yiga clan and yes 120 shrines and 900 korok seeds.
Saying you only get some korok seed is either being disingenuous, or you've fallen so far down the rabbit hole of craving monetizable bars that get filled, that it's probably a good idea to play some more Zelda and just, as Oli put it, "be present". Try to set your own goals.


Also, I know it's a pub conversation more or less verbatim, and I know I suck at those too, but am I the only one that's slightly disappointed that Oli and Tapsell weren't able to elucidate what's more innovative about Zelda than being like Far Cry discovering physics?
34 3

spekkeh

4 months ago

The voting is blind, and I would never give away anyone's votes, but Wes your list was a fucking travesty. And that's the reason it's so high.
I knew it! I knew it!



WESLEEEEY
34 1

Eurogamer's Top 50 Games of 2017: 20-11

spekkeh

4 months ago

Now this is a list of excellent games finally. That leaves for the top ten Edith Finch, Destiny 2 (GOTY list stealth Destiny article), Hellblade, PUBG, (Cuphead maybe?,) and, what I can only assume, slaytendo. Which is funny considering Eurogamer was one of the frontrunners of the Nintendoomed wave back in February.
17 3

Eurogamer's Top 50 Games of 2017: 30-21

spekkeh

4 months ago

#36 Nier Automata
#26 Mass Effect Andromeda


79 1

Eurogamer's Top 50 Games of 2017: 40-31

spekkeh

4 months ago

I could maybe handle Persona, but Nier Automata on #36 you done goofed up now EG. Okay so I hated most of the gameplay and just rushed through it on easy from route B onwards, but boy does it end up something special. Don't sleep on it people.

Horizon on 31 seems a tad lowish, but I can imagine it being a result of nobody wanting to go to bat for it. It would be in the lower half of my top ten too, so if that's extrapolated over some ten editors, 31 is not too bad.
7 13

The year in apocalypse

spekkeh

4 months ago

I'm generally really tired of the post apocalyptic trope, but two of my three favorite games of the year essentially revolve around that, Breath of the Wild and Nier Automata. I guess there's still a lot that can be done with it, or maybe it's a case of it's not what it's about, but it is more how it is about it. Horizon Zero Dawn was very good as well of course, though for the nice story and awesome setting it did feel a bit more like going through the motions. Still would have been near the top of the list in any other year.

Edit: maybe it's also the kind of emotions that are designed to be engendered in the setting. Both Zelda and Nier tackle complex feelings of melancholy and personal redemption (albeit more positive and nihilistic respectively), which not many games do, whereas Horizon like most games employs slightly simpler emotions like anger, courage, victory (admittedly in a more rounded story however).
2 0

Eurogamer readers' top 50 games of 2017 voting

spekkeh

4 months ago

The top 3 is easy for me, though not perhaps the order.

BotW, Nier Automata and Mario Odyssey stood apart for me in a year that was already stacked with great games. Maybe the best year ever? A contender for 1998's throne at least.

After that it gets more murky. Ultimately I went with Splatoon 2 and Life is Strange, because I feel like noone else would, and they deserve recognition. But I could easily have swapped them out with Horizon, Uncharted, Mario+Rabbids and many more.
4 0

spekkeh

4 months ago

Aw jeez how did I miss this last week. Now I only have two more hours to vote and I didn't even get to play Hellblade and Edith Finch, ack.
2 0

It is impossible to be annoyed while playing Hoops mode in Arms

spekkeh

5 months ago

I too thought this. Then I played Hoops against Ribbon Girl. Now it is by far the most annoying experience ever.
4 0

"Initial" Star Wars Battlefront 2 loot box-related changes go live

spekkeh

5 months ago

Title should have been "EA finetunes predatory practices to squeeze out more money from gullible people" cause that's all this is.

The interesting thing is that apparently Disney is okay with all of this in front of The Last Jedi after all. And who can blame them. Outside of fan posturing it seems this game is selling fantastic anyway.
29 3

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 review

spekkeh

5 months ago

(abload didn't work, reuploaded elsewhere)

Switch first year be like

20 1

The Switch's special year is set to end as it began, with another 100 hour classic

spekkeh

5 months ago

@sid-6581 lol! I think that sarcasm went over some people's heads.
3 2

After Star Wars Battlefront 2, EA changes Need for Speed Payback loot crates, progression

spekkeh

5 months ago

Tweaking lootcrates is not a U-turn, it's business as usual.

People are more aware of being fleeced right now, making buyers apprehensive. So they tweak the payout to be more generous to sustain selling them, then afterwards when the buyers are coddled back to sleep, you can turn down the payout chance again.
9 0

How to fix Star Wars Battlefront 2

spekkeh

5 months ago

Loot boxes are largely ignored in other full-priced and predominantly multiplayer games Overwatch and Call of Duty: WW2 - beyond being historically disrespectful - because they contain only cosmetic items to alter character or weapon appearance. They're there and you'll open them and you'll want them, but you won't, and this is crucial, need them.
I don't think I necessarily agree with this dichotomy. There are different player types who may approach a community driven game like Overwatch or Battlefield for different purposes.



Yes pay to win mechanics means a competitively driven player may feel the need to pay in order to remain competitive. But likewise, a player that is driven by fantasy may feel the need to pay, in order to be able to live the fantasy of being Darth Vader. Likewise, an achievement driven player may feel the need to buy a lot of lootboxes to acquire all of the characters.

Saying cosmetics are okay, but pay to win isn't, just feels like you are saying "it's okay to fleece one group, just not the other".

The game mechanics may be a bit more involved in the way it caters to competitive players, but customization, character select, etc. are also game mechanics, and their inclusion means you also attract different player motivation types.

The reason the outcry is here, is because people implicitly hold Star Wars to a higher standard than Call of Duty, and because EA has been particularly abrasive in the way it permeates everything. Not, or at least it shouldn't, because there is a inherent difference in the application itself.
12 9

Arms 4.0 releases tomorrow, and will introduce a new character

spekkeh

5 months ago

But how can they release new characters five months out without stuffing lootboxes up our nose, surely this is the only way to pay for it and not fracture the player base 🤔.
33 1

EA's response to Star Wars: Battlefront 2 hero unlock fury isn't going down well

spekkeh

5 months ago

So another interesting thing is that for the review event, unlocking heroes costs 10k credits, whereas in the final consumer version, it would cost 60k credits:

https://www.resetera.com/threads/battlefront-iis-review-copies-needed-a-lower-amount-to-unlock-heroes.5735/
53 1

Call of Duty: WW2's loot box microtransaction currency goes live next week

spekkeh

6 months ago

Ah yes. The reviews have been written, the gamers have become invested, now it's time to fleece the bejeebus out of everyone.



Somehow even more topical ten years later.
3 0

Ex-NeoGAF members band together to create new forum, ResetEra

spekkeh

6 months ago

Sucks I got perma'd from GAF earlier this year for being sarcastic without specifically mentioning I was being sarcastic (some mods had a pretty, er, literal way of approaching posts). Now I can't get on either. I guess I'll have to hope they don't wait too long with introducing a registration function.
3 4

Super Mario Galaxy, the Nintendo game that landed from another star

spekkeh

6 months ago

Super Mario Galaxy 2 might put up the sterner challenge and may well be the better game, but I'll take its predecessor any day for the coherence of its own particular dream world


Aside from lacking the coherent world and fairytale story, I find that Super Mario Galaxy 2's focus on challenge (or conversely SMG's relative lack thereof) actually subtly shifts the experience of the game to a different tradition.

The main experience (aesthetic as Robin Hunicke would call it) of Galaxy 1 is that of sensory exploration and self-expression. The game was essentially easy enough that you could freewheel through many of the challenges in the acrobatic way you saw fit. Galaxy 2's focus on challenging levels put it more in the obstacle course tradition of 2D Mario's, that was further developed in 3D World. Part of why we remember Mario Galaxy 1 for its creative brilliance is that there are precious few self-expression platformers.

Still, while my preference lies with the first, I consider both games about as perfectly designed (if you can say something like that) as games go. About half my courses consist of analyzing Mario Galaxy levels. Here's hoping starting from tomorrow I can finally update the lecture slides.
12 1

Monument Valley designers' next game Florence is about first love

spekkeh

6 months ago

Sounds utterly fantastic. Here's hoping an Android version is on the books somewhere not too far down the line.
3 0

Nintendo reveals Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, its next free-to-play mobile game

spekkeh

6 months ago

Played the Australian version for a bit. Yeah it's really pretty and charming. Aside from that it has that whole clicker bar filling microtransactions stuff that I can't stand in modern gaming, so I don't know how long I'll keep playing. Maybe it opens up if you have friends playing it so you check out each other's campsites.

At least my Nintendo shares will do well because this is going to rake in cash.
3 0

"I've seen people literally spend $15,000 on Mass Effect multiplayer cards"

spekkeh

6 months ago

@PoundTheMound

disclaimer: according to some definitions I'm a millennial myself.

But you can still see it to this day, mostly in family owned companies. You grow up to have pride in this thing your family produces and then you take over.
There are of course, fewer and fewer family businesses.

I'm not an economics professor obviously so I have no idea how correct it is, but I read a critique about the economic crisis of 2008, which stated that starting from somewhere around the seventies, the Harvard Business School approach became in vogue. This propounded that management is a profession, something that you could study for, and that it didn't really matter what it was you managed. Previously managers would bubble up from the workforce, so there was a strong relationship between the manager and knowledge on the thing that was being made, but more and more it became a virtue to not have the foggiest about the thing your workers are doing, as long as you maximized the personnel cost to the profit margins. It's management by way of bean counting, instead of intrinsic drives of creating the best possible product.

Around this same time, staffing departments were being relabeled to human resources, to reflect the way management was thinking. It seems like someone hacked the wikipedia of human resources, and it's been up for at least a couple of days, so look at the 'history' subsection for a laugh:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_resources
5 1

spekkeh

6 months ago

@rafaeleconomides
It's nice and comfy to remember the good old days, hell I do it a lot lately online, but his point still stands. Mindless consuming is as much to blame for all this as the companies themselves. Companies won't sell what you don't want to buy.
Sure but there are also tons of companies who could sell more if they included addictive substances and extortion techniques, but choose not to. Not because of the law, but because they want to be able to look themselves in the mirror. Call it noble, call it naive, but some companies are still run by people.
57 4

spekkeh

6 months ago

@Bertie I feel it somehow crumbled apart right after the doctors left. Like EA bided it's time until all authority figures left to rebrand it into its own image.

I have absolutely nothing to back up this slightly slanderous hypothesis though. Maybe something to look into?
22 1

spekkeh

6 months ago

@GAmbrose
I'd personally blame the idiots spending the money, not the publishers. At the end of the day, EA are a business, not a charity and will naturally try and maximise profits.
Probably crazytalk for the average millennial, but there was a time companies were actually proud of the product they put out. When managers didn't hop between companies like locusts and staffing departments were there for the interest of the staff and not to squeeze every drop out of human resources.

Good on Heir to smell the coffee and bail. EA seems ripe for another worst company in the world award.

(edit: I should probably mention that I know a number of very good people at EA, so this is mostly directed to the bean counters)
93 6

How video game difficulty became a cultural battleground

spekkeh

6 months ago

@Malek86
Fair enough, but as said even in the dedicated crowd lots of people enjoyed it. Wii still sold some sixty million to the core gamers. You can see it in the indie boom. (and you think it was people that never played a game before that flocked to walking simulator mods like Dear Esther? nah fam, that's the dedicated crowd.) You can see it in these so-called dumbed down games like Mass Effect 2 that scored a significantly higher metacritic than Mass Effect 1. The majority wasn't very silent, it was voting with its wallet.
4 0

spekkeh

6 months ago

@Malek86
but it's not hard to remember that mostly everyone - and I mean players and journalists alike - used to decry the lowered difficulty ("dumbing down"?) of AAA games. I don't remember almost anyone who actually disagreed.
You have a bit of a skewed perspective if you think the period that the game industry exploded in the mainstream for becoming accessible, apparently 'nobody' actually liked it. This was also the time the indie boom happened, because AAA had in fact become needlessly complex with layers upon layers of game systems; so parts of the core too moved to simpler games. It's undeniable most people liked the dumbing down, you just stuck to an echo chamber.
6 2

spekkeh

6 months ago

I really like these researched longform articles EG has been putting out lately. This one has a few glaring anachronisms (a 2006 game cannot follow up 2008's Dear Esther; I also doubt mid-90s Japanese arcade developers invented the coddling difficulty descriptions when home release Wolfenstein 3D had these in 92 already ('can I play daddy' as the easy setting), Doom one year later also came with 6 difficulty levels), but I'm okay with some artistic liberties.

Some thoughts on the topic though.

While I'm a 100% in favor of the notion that games should not try to cater to everyone, this is primarily because some player types are diametrically opposed and so the game dynamics one person appreciates, the other annoys. Satisfying everyone in that case (games like Assassin's Creed and modern Dragon Age are wont to do this), results in satisfying noone. I find that difficulty is too easily conflated with this notion however, and I don't think it particularly holds up to scrutiny. Difficulty is something different from game aesthetics.

For one, difficulty is wholly in the eye of the beholder. And so when Simon says that game designers painstakingly balance a game to create an optimal difficulty level... there's really no such thing. The question should be asked, optimal for whom? Game designers are designers, they are not artists (even though they might want to be, it's at least not in their job description), they are always designing for a user. In this case perhaps a bracket of player skill levels they consider their audience. While it's absolutely their prerogative to target just a select few gamers, is it really so bad to approach a bigger audience by setting different brackets? Football is a top sport designed for competition. But that there are B-level amateurs playing football in no way diminishes the stature of the premier league. It only further enables it.

This framing of top sports gaming perhaps becomes more problematic when you relate it to the Olympics. Because what then should your opinion of the Paralympics be? Is it something to be derided? Should the IOC stick to only the few people born with talent, genetics, and full bodies? (I'm sure some people do and there's overlap with the git gud crowd.) In my opinion, just because the Paralympics and Game Accessibility are new phenomena, doesn't mean the old ways were somehow better. Just because you got gud doesn't mean you need to be a dick to lesser or disabled players.
8 1

What the UK can learn from the Far East's battle with loot boxes

spekkeh

6 months ago

@Naetharu that's a pretty benign way to depict it even. It's like a kid buying panini or magic cards... if that kid was being followed around by ten data scientists and psychologists, who are monitoring everything the kid is doing, and the moment it starts crying offer it a special 50% discount on the confidence booster pack, limited to the next three minutes, which gives you a nice endorphine release in flashy particle and sound effects and even a small chance of getting even with your bullies. Surely if you're a parent you'd want to kick these creepy stalkers asses. At the least you would not let them into your home, as the game companies are doing.

People who think a whizzbang loot crate in an intelligent digital assessment system is the same as a pack of cards you can buy in a store are hopelessly naive as to how far we've progressed (or are progressing towards).

And being transparent like in China is not going to help much. Smart and non compulsive people know that with a slot machine the house always wins. But variable reward scheduling works because your mind wants to make sense of random chance, so you start making overconfident faulty inferences. If you have win chances, some people will only want to control (game) the system more. I lost six times, so the seventh time will surely give me a legendary. The only way this stuff goes away is if we treat it like chocolate cigarettes. Ban it or make it 18+.
6 0

Are loot boxes gambling?

spekkeh

6 months ago

@Norlo

No I'd be okay with lower production values though.

Our budgets are too high so we simply have to resort to predatory tactics to trick mentally weak people out of their cash.

When was this every okay? What the hell are you implying?

Yes nicotine is addictive but we have no other option otherwise Philip Morris will turn less profit and has to fire some people.

Oh okay if you put it like that carry on?!?!
9 0

spekkeh

6 months ago

Thank you Eurogamer for interviewing actual scientists on the subject. For some reason most gaming websites seem content on just interviewing the ESRB, a self-regulatory agency of the games industry itself, who says no our lawyers say we're fine, and then call it a day. Probably hella relieved that they don't have to take any of their beloved publishers to task.

Yes this is the same variable reward scheduling that reinforces you to lose your money as gambling. It *is* gambling and any legal talk that would claim otherwise is a convenient technicality.

It does share similarities with tradeable card games though. If tradeable card games could increase motivation to buy them based on goal setting, personality profiling and adaptive deprivation, if tradeable card games had the potential to infinitely string you along, if tradeable card games didn't actually transfer ownership to you so that thirty years later they still hold value and not get wiped with the next server update, etc. etc. So clearly it's very little like tradeable card games, the EU and PEGI do not know what they're dealing with or are in cahoots with the companies, and the legislation is terribly outdated.

Also

The games sector also takes its responsibility to players, particularly children, seriously
F-- you. No it doesn't and neither do you.
12 0

Star Wars Battlefront 2 has a loot crate problem

spekkeh

6 months ago

This is not even pay to win. Pay to win means you have some degree of certainty over the outcome. It's not even a progression system, a progression system also presupposes a direction, not a random chance. If it's like the article states it's a pure slot machine. A slot machine that you have to pay $60 for to get access to.

If I was a designer forced to implement this I may well cry myself to sleep every night.

not really I'd be out the door faster than the suits could wave a bonus at.

Not that devs get bonuses of course, only suits do


@FuzzyDucky

If this remains as-is the review should be an automatic "Avoid", simple as.
Cosigned.
19 1

You can now appear offline in Battle.net

spekkeh

7 months ago

Stealth Destiny article
27 0
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