Should Games Arbitrarily Withhold Content?

Yahtzee Croshaw

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Should Games Arbitrarily Withhold Content?

Is it acceptable for a game to arbitrarily withhold content from its paying customers?

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Kenjitsuka

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"It raises the question (another rhetorical one, so sit down)"
Awwwwww :(

But you're a GoT fan: yay!!!!
Another thing I have in common with my idol (and a billion others): swoon! :p
 

InsanityRequiem

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It's dependent on context and how that content is unlocked. You have to pay more to unlock it? Oh hell no, that's bad policy. If it's unlocked dependent on how far players reaches in a game, or how far you yourself reach? Depends on what is needed to be done.
 

Thanatos2k

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Is it acceptable for a game to arbitrarily withhold content from its paying customers?
Yes. Withholding content until the player demonstrates some measure of skill? Sure. Withholding content until the player demonstrates some measure of progress within the game? Sure. Withholding content such that you reward the player later? Sure. Withholding content until a certain amount of time has passed? Usually bad.

Withholding content until the player gives you more money? No. Never.
 
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darkalter2000 said:
now you are just gonna throw down Game of Thrones spoilers in the middle of run on sentences? Great strategy. For an asshole.
I thought the same thing. I mean, I'm surprised that it's even aired in Australia, let alone that Yahtzee feels it's OK to stick in a spoiler for an episode about a week old. It's a good line, but kind of a dick move.

OT: When I hear about that model for Splatoon, it doesn't make me think about people coming back day after day to play new maps. It makes me think of someone who picks up the game, plays a couple matches, and does that for a few days until the realise there's nothing else on offer and the stuff they enjoyed is cycled out until tomorrow. Then tomorrow they have a late night at work, and it's not until they get into bed that they realise they wanted to play those maps, and resolve to come back in three days. Then they forget to do that, and it teaches them not to come back to the game.

It's weird to see a company that sees how passionately people react to entertainment on demand, to notice that companies like Valve and Netflix can milk people for years by giving them a ton of variety and the freedom to engage with the parts they want on the schedule they want, and decide, "That's stupid, people want more restrictions."
 

Bedinsis

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I don't watch game of thrones, I await the novels to come out. I'm sincerely pissed off about the causal mention of a spoiler which I assume informs what will happen in the novels.

Don't answer that by the way, viewers, any more information I'll treat as potential spoilers and hence ignore.
 

Darth_Payn

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Now I forget the opening question this column started on. Dammit, I had something for that!
Anyway, I don't mind expansion packs for a game, because it means more of a game I liked. I like more game content being unlocked as I progress by playing, not giving more money for it.

captcha: neckbeard
I think the spam filter is deliberately antagonizing us.
 

Maze1125

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Thanatos2k said:
Withholding content until the player gives you more money? No. Never.
Yeah, I hate expansion packs. How dare a company work for months on content and then expect me to pay for it...
The bastards!
 

InsanityRequiem

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Maze1125 said:
Thanatos2k said:
Withholding content until the player gives you more money? No. Never.
Yeah, I hate expansion packs. How dare a company work for months on content and then expect me to pay for it...
The bastards!
There's a difference between content on the disc that is unable to be accessed without paying an extra $5-15 for it, and the release of extra content at a later date, usually 6 months to a year at the least.
 

CaitSeith

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Who are you to dictate how someone can enjoy your product after the money and the disk have changed hands?
Well, at the end of the day it's the developers who ultimately program the rules in their games. The rules existed long before the disk touched your hands. But it's in the consumer's hands to choose the game that has the rules they like the most. And if you already paid the game, well, that's what refunds are for. You can also resell the disk.

PS captcha: no brainer
 

Grumpy Ginger

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It does seem a bit of a dick move to arbitrarily close of certain areas of of content but in Splatoons case I have a completely unresearched and spurious theory why they did so. Namely to stop the congregation of all players to a single map and everybody developing strategies that only work on that map. It has happens in plenty of other games Halo's blood gulch is a pretty good example. Instead players are forced to play on different maps at different times so they have to learn all of them and the strategies you need to win in each.
 

Yahtzee Croshaw

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Who are you to dictate how someone can enjoy your product after the money and the disk have changed hands? Because there are plenty of creators in the world who have tried, even before the age of online post-sale tampering. The mediocre authors, directors and game designers who answer criticism of their work by declaring that the critic "didn't get it" or "weren't reading/watching/playing it the right way". And you know what we call people like that? Absolute cunts.
Pot calling the kettle black, aren't we Croshaw? I'm more under the impression that Nintendo was trying to do something artistic with this feature and tie the game's urban themes into the gameplay given that when the stages change or a new update is added, it's presented in the form of a news broadcast presented by the game's two pop idols and whatnot. It just didn't work is all.

I don't consider this a deal breaker in Splatoon's case because the gameplay is centered more around inking the ground than just "kill everything that moves" and so forth and in the former's case, there's not really much point in learning your layout too much since camping usually backfires.
 

FPLOON

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WHOA, YAHTZEE! SPOILERS!! I did not know that Splatoon had that many maps going on right now... Glob! Way to ruin the surprise...

OT: Well, given how Splatton does their map-matching as well as the one time I got a chance to play it (and became part of the winning team as a result), I find it to better than how it is in MW2 and MW3... Seriously, both those games have over 10 maps and, yet, my and my friends always choose the Terminal... If those games did what Splatoon was doing, we would, at least, be trying out the other maps in the process...

Other than that, in general, as long as it doesn't impede the game's "story", I can't personally complain about it because I just wait until the GOTY/Definitive editions to come out, anyway...
 

snekadid

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This is the problem I had with helldivers. Yes, its a fun game and getting destroyed and coming back from that is always fun, but the fact you are forced to play a limited number of maps, and all against a single of the 3 enemy races for prolonged periods of time is garbage. I understand, you're going for a warfront theme and i'd be fine if there was a special mode that had that as the play mode, but its the only mode and it means I was stuck fighting a single race, unable to fight anything else for a freaking week with no chance or option to switch to a different experience. it turned a game I could of seen myself enjoying into a painful grind.
 

Candescence

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Grumpy Ginger said:
It does seem a bit of a dick move to arbitrarily close of certain areas of of content but in Splatoons case I have a completely unresearched and spurious theory why they did so. Namely to stop the congregation of all players to a single map and everybody developing strategies that only work on that map. It has happens in plenty of other games Halo's blood gulch is a pretty good example. Instead players are forced to play on different maps at different times so they have to learn all of them and the strategies you need to win in each.
I'm inclined to agree that this is probably the case. Though, I'm not one of those insane types who plays online games for hours on end, so the map cycling isn't really an issue for me, since I don't get tired of that stuff.

That, and the rotation is every four hours, not a day, as Yazhtee implies.
 

Thanatos2k

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Maze1125 said:
Thanatos2k said:
Withholding content until the player gives you more money? No. Never.
Yeah, I hate expansion packs. How dare a company work for months on content and then expect me to pay for it...
The bastards!
Expansion packs made after the game has come out are basically new games. Not withheld content. I mean, you know that, right?
 

Steve the Pocket

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Yahtzee Croshaw said:
Maybe I feel threatened by this new age of amorphous games because I'm a game reviewer and my job hinges on commonality. I need to be able to reference things in the games I talk about that the audience can recognize, so that we can all share a jolly good laugh at its expense. But increasingly I find I am only able to review a single state in which the game temporarily exists, and which it will no longer exist in by the time a new viewer catches up and watches the review years, months, or weeks down the line.
That having been said, would this be a good time to suggest that you spend the next lull between release seasons revisiting a game you already reviewed that has since had a lot of new content added, like Team Fortress 2 (which you only barely touched on the first time around but have spent a lot of other videos and columns talking up as some sort of ideal of online gaming - not that I disagree) or Minecraft?
 

Coruptin

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darkalter2000 said:
now you are just gonna throw down Game of Thrones spoilers in the middle of run on sentences? Great strategy. For an asshole.
Bedinsis said:
I don't watch game of thrones, I await the novels to come out. I'm sincerely pissed off about the causal mention of a spoiler which I assume informs what will happen in the novels.

Don't answer that by the way, viewers, any more information I'll treat as potential spoilers and hence ignore.
Spoilers enhance enjoyment.

 

Maze1125

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Thanatos2k said:
Maze1125 said:
Thanatos2k said:
Withholding content until the player gives you more money? No. Never.
Yeah, I hate expansion packs. How dare a company work for months on content and then expect me to pay for it...
The bastards!
Expansion packs made after the game has come out are basically new games. Not withheld content. I mean, you know that, right?
Yes they are withheld content. Factually so.
It is content. Fact.
They refuse to give it to you until you give them money. Fact.

Therefore, it is, 100%, without a doubt, content that is withheld until the player gives them more money.

Which you said should never happen.
 

Yahtzee Croshaw

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Maze1125 said:
Thanatos2k said:
Maze1125 said:
Thanatos2k said:
Withholding content until the player gives you more money? No. Never.
Yeah, I hate expansion packs. How dare a company work for months on content and then expect me to pay for it...
The bastards!
Expansion packs made after the game has come out are basically new games. Not withheld content. I mean, you know that, right?
Yes they are withheld content. Factually so.
It is content. Fact.
They refuse to give it to you until you give them money. Fact.

Therefore, it is, 100%, without a doubt, content that is withheld until the player gives them more money.

Which you said should never happen.
If that's the case, then all games in their entirety are withheld content.

Well, except free to play games, but they have their own more specific version of withheld content.