16 October 2009

Sound and Fury

Another disappointment this week. Assassin's Creed was originally slated for this month for the PC. So I saved my 60.00 and went off to the store to see if this machine can handle it. It is not out. It is now due out in March of next year.

So instead I spent 35.00 and reassessed my desire for the game. Of course now it will be bigger, better and require more hardware. And that is the state of gaming. Gone are the days of companies that came out with great games like Thief, Eye of the Beholder and Lands of Lore. Beautiful graphics, great story and good game play. Instead everything must be online, interactive and require more hardware, different o/s's and twenty tweaks. I sit here with games I would love to play but in this economy cannot justify upgrading the machine just to play a game. What starts out as a 60.00 purchase becomes 260.00 or more by the time you get the latest graphics cards, sound cards, and RAM needed for this generation of games. Games that in my opinion are no more exciting than those mentioned previously that ran on less of a machine.(2MB ram, 486 processor or less and 1MB or more hd space.)

Why? Perhaps that should be the big change made in the industry. Set machine specs before the project starts and hold the developers to them. Set them so they run on a machine that is one back from the state of the art. Why? Because delays in the production of a product point to issues in the industry which means low profits. Low profits mean people are not buying games. If the industry is losing money perhaps they need to poll their player base and not rely on the propaganda put forth by marketing sites and what they claim. Sure I would love a 7,000.00 machine just for games, but honestly it was a chore getting a 600.00 one.

Yes I am one voice. One buyer one gamer. But I plan what I will buy and save for it. So do others. When it turns out I cannot run it on the equipment I have, I move on. Even Guild Wars seems to have made changes to the old game so that now some areas lock and freeze due to graphics issues, areas I made it through before on this machine on dial up even. Overlord for the Wii pushed the limits of the machine. That still blows my mind. It was MADE for a console with very definite specs, yet there were still points when the graphics overwhelmed the machine.

So if anyone in the industry truly listens, which I am doubting more and more. Here is a suggestion. Go to the gaming sites incognito. READ and I mean READ the forums regarding installation and issues with games. See what people truly complain about. Look at what they are really running for a machine. Not what they want, not what they drool over, but rather what they have now.

Delays are acceptable if it results in a good game that anyone can run on their system. Delays are fine if the game is worth it. But tell your marketing group to lose the hype. We are tired of all the sound and fury about airware. Too much hype leads to disappointment and disappointment leads to money going elsewhere.

Oh and on what did I spend my 35.00? 2 games - Trine for the PC and a used copy of Baroque for the Wii. Sorry guys someone else got the money I had planned for Assassin's Creed, because they had the games in the store for systems I have.