Even better when there's a lot of them all complaining about the same thing - because then they don't feel so alone.
The latest thing for them to get on their bile horse about is No Man's Sky. You see, it has been revealed that it'll be a full-price game, and apparently that's far too expensive for what they've deemed an "indie" title.
Just to recap here, No Man's Sky is a PS4 and PC sci-fi explore 'em up - an "adventure survival game" in the words of its developer. It's set in an open, procedurally-generated universe, with some 18
quintillion planets to explore - many with unique lifeforms and plants.
What most are getting excited about isn't just the sheer size of the game, but the way you'll be able to fly to a planet, enter its atmosphere, land, get out of your spaceship, wander around... then get back in your spaceship and fly off somewhere else. It might be rubbish - I've not played it - but thus far everything about it looks great, even down to its distinctive art direction.
But this isn't enough for some. Noooo. "It's too expensive because it's an indie game," they sneer in their snivelling, entitled whines, while typically missing the entire point of everything ever.
You see, No Man's Sky is being developed and published by Guildford's Hello Games - a relatively small team.
They're independent, not affiliated with any big company. Even their website is sort of endearingly homespun - and all of that is what seems to be stoking the ires of the idiots.
It doesn't seem to register that Hello Games is clearly creating something with ambition - and potential longevity - that eclipses certain games created by teams numbering in the hundreds.
You can pre-order it right now on Amazon for £49.99 - the same price as most other big releases. And that, according to the bent logic of some gamers, is too expensive. No Man's Sky - an apparently original game - isn't worth that because it was made by some people in a shed in Guildford. Yet Call of Duty Black Ops III - a mostly unoriginal game created by hundreds of people, backed by a company with deep pockets - is.
Like... uh... what? In what universe does that make one iota of sense? So... something is worth more, the more people that have created it? So... you'd rather hand over your money to a huge corporation like Sony or Microsoft, than a small team?
"I can't buy this painting, sir - it was only painted by one man! I demand all my paintings and poems be created by hundreds of men and women, all working in unison - why should I hand over my hard-earned money to an individual!?"
And with that it all falls into place. It's the same thing we see time and time again with gamers on social media: jealousy. For some reason, these mess-ups find it more satisfying to attack individuals - or smaller groups of people - than companies.
Here's what I think is behind the whingeing about the price of No Man's Sky.
Because Hello Games isn't some vast, faceless, corporate entity... because there's some sort of human face representing them... there are those who look at the company and think "That could be me".
Except... it isn't you, because all you've ever done with your life is spend it seething about others, or trying to upset others. And you know that. You know you've squandered your potential, and it makes you bitter.
But because you have the emotional intelligence of a sphincter, instead of using that bitterness to change yourself, to improve your lot and strive for happiness, you project it externally and attack others that you feel have the life you would like. Or try to make somebody as miserable as you are. Or you try to control the world, because you feel so damn impotent.
We saw it happening with Gamergate - while there might've once been a case for debating ethics in games journalism, Gamergate got mired in the most repellent form of misogynistic straight white boy entitlement, while the social justice warrior side often defeated itself with the sort of knee-jerk political correctness that makes people turn against political correctness. It became - and still is - like most wars: two sides fighting each other, when they were really fighting their own fears.
A large percentage of those attacks on the GG side came from those who would've loved to be reviewing or making games for a living. They'd deny it of course, but they were jealous. Jealous of games journalists. Jealous that people they deemed to have little worth were working in the games industry. Jealous of the unknown. Just so damn angry and they weren't going to take it anymore, whatever it might've been.
It's just irritating now, these gaming storms-in-teacups that brew up every now and then. People getting annoyed about things, and expressing that annoyance, but never stopping to ask why it annoys them.
I'm not defending the price of games here: as I've stated elsewhere, it'd be nice if everything cost about a quid. But you can't blame Hello Games for pricing its massive, ambitious, original game in line with the rest of the market. In context, £49.99 is a fair price to pay for No Man's Sky.
Also, just so you know - if you're actually angry about that price, it's about the same as you'd pay for an hour of psychotherapy.
ARE GAMES TOO EXPENSIVE? - BY MR BIFFO
GAMING: THE ONLY SOCIETY THAT MAKES SENSE - BY MR BIFFO
HOW TO BE A GAMES JOURNALIST - BY MR BIFFO
This isn't a perfect fix, but I've managed to cut-and-paste the original comments from my phone's browser into the box below. Press reveal to read them.
Err, Biffo, the fact that the "defending" side of gamergate is social justice kind of puts lie to the idea that the "attacking" side had anything to do with ethics in games journalism, doesn't it? Unless there's some secret connection between progressive politics and games reviewing that I'm missing.
Except that Gamergate quickly went from being about journalistic ethics to giving misogynists a platform to attack any female involved in the games industry or those who represent a feminist perspective.
It was a hashtag, genius. By your logic, if we take every comment on a hashtag as representative of a movement, the #blacklivesmatter hashtag quickly went from being about racial equality and representation to racist and genocidal threats.
Not everything on the internet has to be black and white. Biffo did a fairly decent job of holding both sides into account without attempting to spin or demonize anyone as "the ebil mu soggy knees neck beard" etc etc - there were equally shitty things flying between the two "parties" and it looks incredibly foolish to be blinkered to one side of these.
4/3/2016 15:50:09 @Fat Sow
Biffo like most people doesn't do a particularly good job of discussing the issue. That doesn't mean that he deliberately does a "bad job", indeed I found myself feeling quite sympathetic when Michael Koretzky of the SPJ explained how people covering the issue can make innocent errors.
It is difficult when all you have to go on is propaganda and hyperbole from the parties involved (guaranteed biased) and that isn't backed by evidence or statistics. Facts are very thin on the ground. Neutral information is almost non-existent given that most information comes from the media and the media are one of the parties involved in the dispute with some very serious allegations levelled at them.
The best if not only "fact" we have to go on is the WAM! study.
According to the Women Action Media! study that was conducted in partnership with Twitter, only 0.66% of Gamergate related accounts were involved in "harassment".
I don't know the definition of "harassment" used in the study. It could mean "death threats", it could mean "someone disagreed with me". Sarkeesian for example (according to her UN speech) defines "harassment" as someone calling her a "liar" when she tells lies.
We also don't know the motives behind anonymous accounts either. We have seen false flag attacks such as Brianna Wu's comical attempt at harassing herself on Steam when she accidentally posted using her real developer account instead of her burner account.
Finally we don't know how many unique individuals are behind those accounts. One obsessive unemployed guy can easily send death threats on 50 accounts.
Anyway to date those are the closest we have to "facts" and even they are questionable for the aforementioned reasons. Not to mention those carrying out the study were far from neutral.
With all that in mind I'd suggest that the real figure is less than 0.66% but I am happy to accept the 0.66% for the purpose of argument.
I'd say defining any movement by something that 0.66% of followers may or may not have done, would in the eyes of most reasonable people be defined as a "smear".
If 0.66% of an ethnic minority group have served time in prison, I am sure we wouldn't brand the entire group as criminals.
To pass judgement based on such limited information is not helpful. Indeed when you know nothing it is probably better to say nothing as the probability of making inaccurate statements about a highly inflammatory subject is extremely high.
It is a pity that Biffo had to inject it into this discussion. A discussion that really boils down to too many soft subjects being taught in schools/colleges these days and Economics not being mandatory at GCSE level. People clearly don't understand how free markets work these days.
It was a misogynist attack platform from the very beginning.
I like to ride around on my misogynist attack platform. It's got "feminazi rockets" on.
5/3/2016 09:36:54I hear the latest GG Joe figure uses one against the evil Nobra.
4/3/2016 12:07:23Im very excited about this and will happily pay 50 notes for it.
As for gamergate - i chose to ignore it all, i despised both sides equally in the end. I played games quietly instead.
Ive just pre-ordered it in fact.
TAKE THAT WHINGERS
It's not worth £50 until it's proven to be good.
4/3/2016 12:52:05Is it only worth £45 until someone else says they like it?
This is a day one purchase for me. Everything I've seen so far looks excellent. The finished game may be crap but I'm willing to find out for myself. Price is subjective too. I thought Virtua Racing on the Mega Drive was expensive at £70 but I never once thought about the price tag once I started playing it and this offers far more than that game did.
I can't remember the last time I paid this much for a game of any sort. I am cheap and out of date and mostly buy old games. But no Man's Sky looks more worthy of £40 than Manly Man War Shooter 8 or Assasin's Creed 38 or whatever.
For £49.99 you could get at least 8 gourmet scotch eggs from a farmers' market. Does No man's sky offer a simulated version of this? No is my guess.
Throw in an extra penny and you could have 125 Saino's scotch eggs.
Can No Mans Sky compete with 125 delicious treats with a little less meats? What a joke. I just pre-ordered it so I can cancel my pre-order. I'll be in Sainsburys.
Super Bad Advice
Given the size of the game, it probably works out to 0.00000000000001p per planet. Compare that with the £49.99 for the single planet featured in Call of Duty (and - get this - it's the SAME planet they've featured in all the previous CoD games!), and it's quite obviously a ridiculous bargain.
P. Dan Tick
According to my detailed research (the Amazon.co.uk listing) there are approximately 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 planets available in this game, which works out at roughly 2.7 picopence per planet, a significant increase on your estimate of 10 femtopence.
They must think we're made of money!
It's clearly not to expensive - You can get a gobble off a scabby crack head for £5 or you can pay £100 to have a lovely nosh off an Eastern European lady who looks like a supermodel - both will last about the same time... To use an analogy
Shit even if you go out for a few pints these days you can spend £40 in a couple of hours - this games play times should be at least twice that of AAA titles on console - Us PC Gamers do not like paying console prices for game sure - but wait, wait 2 months and get it for £20 yeah? and shut up
Anyone remember if there was any sort of similar uproar over The Witness' pricing?
I guess most people were expecting the game to be 15-20 quid, I'm not surprised the asking price is up there with AAA game prices as the game itself seems very ambitious. I'm reluctant to pre-order as I worry the game will suffer the same problems as Elite: Frontier did, once you've seen several star systems you've seen them all. I need to see some solid extended footage of the game until I decide to buy it or not.
Now then, Gamergate or whatever it's called, I have tried several times to understand this 'thing' and everytime I end up more and more confused and just give up and play some games instead. I need a Reddit ELI5 on this GG stuff, I would do a search but meh.
I've been stupidly excited about this game since the end of 2013 - the excitement faded a little towards the end of last year due to excitement fatigue (I think they'd have been better saving the announcement until nearer completion).
Now I'm all hyped again. I know I will pre-order despite having been burned by such foolishness before, but not yet. It's still 3 months, 2 weeks, 6 days and 2 hours until the release date and it'd be daft to blow my wad (of cash) so soon. Judging by the Steam best sellers list (it is currently in position 5) - some people haven't managed to restrain themselves...
I've pre-ordered the limited edition. I'm a sucker for those.
It does look good...
I'll admit when I first read about No Man's Sky as a procedurally generated sandbox game created by a small development studio, and saw some static screenshots, it reminded me of a fancy looking Minecraft. This brought with it the notion that it would have a typically indie price tag. So £50 was a surprise.
Now that I've seen the videos it looks very impressive and has the same high level of refinement as any other AAA game. The release price seems totally justified.
Kelvin Green link
So... you'd rather hand over your money to a huge corporation like Sony or Microsoft, than a small team?"
Sadly, I suspect a lot of people do think this way.
How many people will actually pay £50 though? Surely it'll be £40 at the most if you shop around. I think the mistake here was that they pitched it as an independent title and peoples expectations were soiled as such. This has lead to a shock factor of 10 epic warped proportions.
I must live in a strange little bubble, I don't know anyone who pays more than £30-35 for a game.
When I say independent I mean "indie" with all it's connotations.
I'm paying £69.99 for the limited edition but I like to collect games and not just play them.
To be fair, I'll spend £70+ on the Fire Emblem Fates LE, so I should probably shut my stupid face.
I don't really engage with social media; avoid twitter, facebook etc. and only rarely make comments like this. Hence, one of the trends I really dislike of recent years is the way that social media crap has permeated other facets of the media, even beyond the internet.
The current focus on identity politics particularly annoys me. In my experience, race, gender, sexuality and religion haven't factored into my professional or personal relationships at all (I'm 27 to put that into context). Using a phrase like "misogynistic straight white boy" seems hypocritical, you’re pointing the finger at misogyny whilst using the label of straight white male, or gamer for that matter, as a pejorative. The problem isn’t with any particular demographic, the problem is that it’s all juvenile nonsense to begin with. It’s literally people calling other people names on twitter and doing anything but dismissing it as such, gives it a legitimacy it doesn’t deserve.
It isn’t limited to gaming media. I find it disheartening anytime a hashtag or twitterstorm enters the mainstream because, generally, it means that a bunch of mean spirited, attention whores are dictating part of the wider public discourse. And with identity politics, it always works towards divisiveness, towards resurrecting social tensions that, I thought, were gone before my time.
To be fair, I think your take on issues like this are level-headed but that’s still an, understandably, angry article you’ve written. It just seems that if you engage with this crap, you get a bit of crap on you. And me too. I’m complaining about the use of a trivial few words. It’s ridiculous really. But that’s the nature of social media, it is ridiculous. It’s all he said, she said and it’s all impersonal and it’s all permanent.
There's a Carol Burnett show sketch on 'political correctness' where a sketch about an Italian woman telling her Jewish neighbor about her husband being deported is sterilized and censored first to make both women white Christians out of fear of portraying a group poorly then they decide having a husband deported (now to Topeka, Kansas since she's no longer Italian) is too tough. She tries Sister only to realize that may offend nuns and settles on her dog being deported.
Which offends the dog lovers (of course this is scripted but it makes a point).
The sketch is sterilized to "Hello Mrs. Smith" / "Goodnight Mrs. Johnson." only for the director to bring up that 'Goodnight' might be seen by some people as "too smutty".
https://youtu.be/1PdjyisZJ0c (If you just want to watch it)
I don't know the air date of the sketch for 40 years later we're having the same arguments with new buzzwords so clearly the sterilization of media has not helped. Tokenism is offensive but heterogeneous groups are not - no one looks at a group of Hispanic women and dares to ask "why are none of them Asian?" but a group of white men isn't diverse enough for some reason.
I think No Man's Sky won't be what people are trying to build it up to be - it'll be more repetitive and samey than people expect and you'll eventually get the usual whinging about having to "grind" X, Y and Z.
But I think the exploration/survival aspect will make it stand out from the Elite/Star Citizen focus on combat and trading. I'm hoping for great things, regardless of whether it lives up to any of the hype.
It won't stay £50 for long, anyway, that's just a price to cream money off the early adopters who have to have everything first. Give it a couple of months and GOG and Steam will be discounting the fuck out of it.
Fifty knicker (knicker being the hot new slang for money; see The Knicker's The Kicker, Totnes rapper Giddy P.'s latest track about economic deprivation in his hometown) does seem a bit much though. I wouldn't be surprised to see people offering their opinions on that, or whingeing, if you prefer. Whingeing - and whingeing about whingeing - is pretty much entirely what the internet is for.
And watching music videos about the desirability of accumulating more knicker, obv.
Based on what I can see about the game it looks well worth the full $59.99 USD price. I remember paying that for much less from AAA companies.
I suspect these people complaining are the hipsters of the gaming world who claimed that indie games were better, but really they just couldn't afford AAA titles. Sort of like people who insist that thrift shop furniture has a "story" which somehow makes it better than new furniture, when in reality it is just cheaper and they just don't want to admit they can't afford something to keep up their own self-image.
Having not had a lot of money growing up it doesn't bother me but for a game like that... honestly what price tag were they expecting? Maybe you COULD do it $10 cheaper... but we all know the reality is that two months after launch (if not sooner) it will be half-price.
4/3/2016 22:35:19Want a discount?
Move to Canada, where it costs the equivalent of £41 and not £50. Although any gains you make might be offset by some other sundry moving expenses.
Suck it. Looks class, I'll be paying for the bugger on Day One.
Agree about the price point and hypocrisy about what a indie game should cost- did as many people complain about The Order 1666's run time as No Mans SKy? Probably not, seeing as people want to play NMS.
But Biffo, I saw GG unfold from ground zero, when it was just a wicked whisper about someone sleeping with a game journo, which turned out to be a blog, trying to ruin an ex's life for leaving the (physically and mentally abusive) writer. The "ethics" thing was just a smokescreen for everyone with an ax to grind against whichever games writer, because they weren't condemming a game dev for choosing who they sleep with. From my view, GG had fuck all to with video games.
This probably isn't an appropriate place to discuss this, but I feel I probably should respond to your post to give an alternative point of view.
The blog in question was written by a victim of what appeared to be an abusive relationship, and who happened to be male. Obviously there's a degree of he said/she said going on, and it's difficult to know what exactly happened, but the blog did include a fair amount of evidence, and details that have been confirmed by other sources. It just seems that the media are out to destroy this guy because of some kind of social stigma around men being victims of emotional abuse. How can straight white men be the victims of anything?