411 Games Fact or Fiction 01.10.13: Sony, Devil May Cry Trailer, 2012 and More
Posted by Daniel Anderson on 01.10.2013
Will Aliens: Colonial Marines beat out Dead Space 3 in sales numbers next month? Will Sony's attempt to link games to user IDs will backfire? Was 2012 one of the worst years for video games? 411’s Chris Ferrell and Sean Garmer debate these topics and more in this week’s Fact or Fiction: Games!
Hello everyone and welcome to this week's edition of Fact or Fiction. As always, I am Daniel Anderson, and I hope everyone has had a good week. I am going to be "that person" for a second here and just gloat for a moment that an SEC team won yet another National Championship. S-E-C. S-E-C. Ok, I am done. Anyway, this week we have 411's (sadly departing) Chris Ferrell going up against Sean Garmer. Let's see what they have to say, shall we?
1.) With the recent legal issues surrounding THQ's bankruptcy, we are closer to seeing THQ split up piece by piece than before.
Chris Ferrell - Fact: At this point THQ really has no choice but to split up their popular titles. Rumors are going around right now that THQ is trying to spinoff the WWE titles.
Sean Garmer - Fact: An agreement has already been made for companies to offer "piecemeal" bids. Personally, I think this is the right way to do it because why should an Investment Firm get everything and then basically do the same thing? Just let the interested parties bid it out for what game property they want. I really hope Ubisoft goes after the Darksiders Franchise because they could do fantastic wonders with that series. I don't see EA signing a deal with WWE after they just locked up UFC not too long ago. WWE or UFC might even see it as a conflict of interest to be honest. So, it probably means we will see WWE at Warner Bros and that would certainly lead to intrigue as to what will happen with WWE Games going forward. I could see EA going after Saints Row pretty hard though.
Score: 1 for 1 - I think THQ is pretty much broken up at this point. Each studio will be sold off, and the properties they work on as well.
2.) Sony trying to tie games to user ids will backfire.
Chris Ferrell - Fiction:As much as the gaming industry hates it the used game market is hard to kill. Fans will probably blow up on the internet, but here's the catch. People will still keep playing Playstation games even if they are locked down to their accounts. There might be a dropoff in sales but on whole, people will eventually forget their anger. Oh, and conspiracy theory here, I bet that Microsoft and Nintendo are exploring similar strategies.
Sean Garmer - Fact: How would they expect this to succeed from anything other than a short term financial perspective? Most people, whether casual gamers or hardcore ones, know what Gamestop is. They also love what Gamestop provides, a way to get money or store credit back for games they no longer play. It still baffles me why the games industry as a whole, cannot just work out a deal with Gamestop and both sides can be happy. Tieing a game to a user id does not benefit your consumer at all because this also means you can't even take a game to a friend's house and play it with them there, unless you take your PS4. You might as well just make everything digital on the next generation, because that's essentially what you are doing. I understand people are losing their jobs because of certain games not selling enough but there is another side to the coin too.
I don't see this working at all because most gamers are not going to be ok with having to pay 60 bucks for every game they want to buy. It can take six months to a year sometimes for games to see one price cut at a normal store. The only way this can work is if they start releasing mid-tier games at lower prices, in the 30 to 40 dollar range because people might take a chance on a game if it's 20 to 30 bucks less. The games industry would see a backlash from this if everyone follows it. Not to mention, Gamestop will probably have to close down a bunch of their branches due to low sales. So, "yey games industry gets more profit, but screw the gamers pockets and Gamestop employees jobs." Yeah, that's stupid. Just work out a deal already people, come on!
Score: 1 for 2 - I don't think video game companies are thinking through what could happen if they hurt Gamestop. If Gamestop goes under, or closes a bunch of locations, certain games will be much harder to find, and sales of games over a year old will fall off even faster than they do now because they will not be as available to the common consumer.
3.) Xbox Live's recent issue with cloud saves show that a cloud only video game system would not work yet.
Chris Ferrell - Fact: The OnLive service which was entirely cloud based has also failed. The problem with cloud systems is twofold. First, when a cloud system fails its generally catastrophic. And second, the bandwidth requirements for cloud based gaming are going to be steep for a large part of the US population. The simple matter is that not all people have access to broadband internet and you sure as hell cannot play cloud-based games on dial up.
Sean Garmer - Fact: I think it would be too risky to make a cloud only system right now. So many bugs and errors happen with these things. Imagine if the cloud servers went down and everyone lost their saves on all of their games, there would be a ton of people wanting a refund on their system. Sure, it makes things really easy to store, but is this going to make the system any less expensive? Maybe in a future generation this could work, but I think Microsoft and Sony don't even need to broach this subject because errors on the Cloud could wind up another Red Ring debacle. We know how impatient gamers are when Xbox Live goes down, I can only imagine this would happen a lot more with the Cloud. Let's not forget, if the Cloud goes down, gamers can't even play a game until it's back online again.
Score: 2 for 3 - I do not see a cloud gaming system succeed right now. The technology still isn't there, and there are too many things that could go wrong. Maybe sometime in the future, but not soon.
4.) Colonial Marines will outsell Dead Space 3 in February 2013.
Sean Garmer - Fiction: I think even with some of the changes they might have done to Dead Space 3 it will sell better. Dead Space is the more known title and it has quite a following at that. I'm thinking of getting Dead Space 3, but I could care less about Colonial Marines. I'm just gonna say Dead Space 3, if I'm wrong, oh well.
Chris Ferrell - Fact: I think this is primarily because Colonial Marines will be available on all the current consoles. That and I have a hunch on this one.
Score: 2 for 4 - I think Colonial Marines will be a 2013 GOTY candidate come end of the year. It has great developers and good name recognition. I have high hopes for this game, and it might be the game to get my PC only gaming friend to get a console.
5.) You enjoyed the new Devil May Cry CG trailer.
Sean Garmer - Fact: I'm actually quite impressed by this game so far. I didn't think a "reboot" of sorts without Dante would work, but this is shaping up to be good. Since I really didn't get to play the original games I am sort of interested in this one and the CG Trailer helped a great deal.
Chris Ferrell - Fiction: I'm not a big DMC fan. The series hasn't appealed to me. While the trailer looked good, it wasn't enough to make me say "I have to play this game."
Score: 2 for 5 - I enjoyed the trailer more than I thought I would. It surprised me after watching it that I considered getting the game. I am not going to say it is a must buy for me, but it is something I will consider after checking out some reviews from friends.
6.) You agree that 2012 was one of the worst years for game releases, at least according to Metacritic.
Sean Garmer - Fact: I say that from a creative perspective mainly because you still had some awesome games come out this year, but almost everything was a sequel. For every Journey, Fez, or even Walking Dead, you have another five sequel games. I miss the days when gaming wasn't all about profit like the film industry and you got fresh games each year. Don't get me wrong, I am still excited by games as every year goes by, but it just saddens me to see the highest sellers always be the same franchises each year.
Chris Ferrell - Fiction: There was some great games that game out this year. Just off the top of my head Dishonored and The Walking Dead were tons of fun. Despite my reservations with the last ten minutes of the game Mass Effect 3 was incredibly fun and I still play the game to this day. No, it wasn't a bad years for games, I just think people were more critical. Score: 2 for 6 - I think people were more critical this year than before. This is the year that we saw a bunch of people vote down a game's score just because they did not agree with the ending. There were a lot of sequels, but to me, that isn't necessarily a bad thing if they are well made. I think 2012 will be seen as an average year for games in a few years.
Bonus Question: Between Dead Space 3, Colonial Marines, and Bioshock Infinite, which game will have the longest life and why?
Sean Garmer - I'm gonna say Bioshock Infinite because out of the three, Bioshock has the most anticipation and the highest potential to deliver a tremendous experience for the player. People have been waiting on Bioshock for a while and unless it just downright sucks, gamers will be playing this for quite a while.
Chris Ferrell - Gut feeling here, I will go with Bioshock Infinite. There was tons of hype behind the trailers at E3 two years ago and for the most part Bioshock is a well liked series. At least in my case it will be the game I play most out of the three options.
That wraps up this week's edition of Fact or Fiction. Chris and Sean went 2 for 6, starting off well and then disagreeing on every question after the break. I hope everyone has a good week, and until then, happy gaming.