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Penny Arcade - Comic - Survivor’s Guilt

DogDog Registered User, Administrator, Vanilla Staff admin
edited January 14 in The Penny Arcade Hub

imagePenny Arcade - Comic - Survivor’s Guilt

Videogaming-related online strip by Mike Krahulik and Jerry Holkins. Includes news and commentary.

Read the full story here


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Posts

  • Dark080matterDark080matter CrateriaRegistered User regular
    So Activision is a raging house fire and NetEase's independent investment in Bungie is... the ambulance? I look forward to this Tycho post because whenever this Inside Baseball stuff spills out into public headlines there is always an interesting revelation or two to be had, but it invariably just makes me even more curious about the other 99% of the story that we don't see.

  • BucketmanBucketman Call me SkraggRegistered User regular
    I feel like Blizzard has long been engulfed in the flames. Many of their top and long running people have left and they have merged fully with Activision

    ThawmusSorce
  • LucascraftLucascraft Registered User regular
    So Activision is a raging house fire and NetEase's independent investment in Bungie is... the ambulance? I look forward to this Tycho post because whenever this Inside Baseball stuff spills out into public headlines there is always an interesting revelation or two to be had, but it invariably just makes me even more curious about the other 99% of the story that we don't see.

    I think you're massively reading into this comic way deeper than you are meant to.

    The concept here is super simple. Bungie got out. Blizzard is still trapped inside. That's all there is to it. There's no secret information, there's no hidden agenda or anything like that.

    The headline last week was that Bungie gained their independence from Activision, and they ran with that as a joke.

    Anything with NetEase's involvement or anything else for that matter is entirely irrelevant here. It's a simple joke. The fire is Activision, and Bungie got free to safety, and Blizzard is still trapped inside.

    ThawmusObiFettdennisBucketmanbowenNightslyrBobbleMenasorforty3clipseMoridin889Man in the MistsAldoZilla360cB557QuidAegerikimeH3Knuckles
  • MercadeMercade Registered User regular
    As a 25-year Blizzard patron, I sincerely hope, as unlikely as it is, that they’ll similarly wrest free from Activision and the old guard will come back and run like a games-first studio again.


    BucketmanSmrtnikMonkey Ball Warrior
  • dennisdennis Registered User regular
    The fire represents money. And the buildings.

    Dark080matter
  • KaitensatsumaKaitensatsuma Registered User regular
    edited January 14
    Somehow I think this is less "Survivor's Guilt" and more something like this...

    gr1abify530r.jpg

    Kaitensatsuma on
    Dark080matterThawmusZilla360
  • Skull2185Skull2185 Registered User regular
    Going to be interesting to see how much of Activision's involvement actually contributed to the state Destiny is in. I don't think Activision has had too much influence over Blizzard, either. They seem to be largely autonomous, with their Activision overlords content to just latch onto Blizz's underbelly and leech that revenue.

    Whatever state Blizzard is in now probably would've happened regardless of Activision. Then again, I don't play WoW, so I don't really have any kind of beef with them other than wanting Diablo 4 (which is on the way)

    Immortal looks sweet to me as well, so I'm optimistic about that one until it proves to be the offensive kind of mobile game.

    Everyone has a price. Throw enough gold around and someone will risk disintegration.
    Dark080mattercB557
  • EspantaPajaroEspantaPajaro Registered User regular
    Bucketman wrote: »
    I feel like Blizzard has long been engulfed in the flames. Many of their top and long running people have left and they have merged fully with Activision

    Yeah blizzard is now very much the “this is fine” meme.

  • KaitensatsumaKaitensatsuma Registered User regular
    Skull2185 wrote: »
    Going to be interesting to see how much of Activision's involvement actually contributed to the state Destiny is in. I don't think Activision has had too much influence over Blizzard, either.

    With Bungie, well at least the old Bungie, it seemed like Activision was trying to milk the cow on a more than reasonable basis.

    I have doubts that's necessarily true with Blizzard. Been sitting on their laurels with WoW for much longer than it was reasonable, and haven't made much of note besides since then...Not to say they were necessarily a *bad* thing, I'd prefer occasional but good games over yearly asset flips like we're seeing elsewhere in the industry, but even MMORPGs need to eventually evolve.

  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    *chefs kiss*

    Aldo
  • Dark080matterDark080matter CrateriaRegistered User regular
    edited January 14
    Lucascraft wrote: »
    ]I think you're massively reading into this comic way deeper than you are meant to.

    Oh you're certainly right, it's a great joke to make on the news and it's not meant to be read too deep. But overanalyzing subtext is a rich literary tradition, and I'm trying to do my part.

    And since we're here anyway why not have the conversation at the very least? Bungie is effectively taking on a new job as a self-publisher which is, to be frank, rather a lot. They still need capital. Given the proximity of the news of their departure with the news they had a source of investor funding, they made the move in the full knowledge of having a different support network.

    I'm just curious how much of this story we'll get to see now and how much is going to come out in five years in the Adam McKay comedic docu-drama.

    Dark080matter on
  • Skull2185Skull2185 Registered User regular
    Skull2185 wrote: »
    Going to be interesting to see how much of Activision's involvement actually contributed to the state Destiny is in. I don't think Activision has had too much influence over Blizzard, either.

    With Bungie, well at least the old Bungie, it seemed like Activision was trying to milk the cow on a more than reasonable basis.

    I have doubts that's necessarily true with Blizzard. Been sitting on their laurels with WoW for much longer than it was reasonable, and haven't made much of note besides since then...Not to say they were necessarily a *bad* thing, I'd prefer occasional but good games over yearly asset flips like we're seeing elsewhere in the industry, but even MMORPGs need to eventually evolve.

    ???

    Blizzard has released numerous games since WoW in 2004, and all of them are the games others desperately try to emulate.

    Hearthstone is the online CCG

    Overwatch is the hero-shooter behemoth that all the online games want to be. Well that and Fortnite, both games the previous FPS titan Call of Duty have emulated in the newest game.

    HotS was a bit of a dud I guess, but it's the only MOBA I personally find to be enjoyable.

    Also Diablo 3, despite it's poor PC launch, has become one of the greatest arpg's ever

    Even WoW has apparently been updated and evolved through expansions that have generally been well received until this most recent one (I think)

    Everyone has a price. Throw enough gold around and someone will risk disintegration.
    TofystedethDark080matterBobbleYoungFreyforty3clipseMan in the MistsBucketmanThawmuscB557SorcekimeH3Knuckles
  • LinktmLinktm Registered User regular
    I haven't laughed at a strip like this in a LONG time.

    Warlock82fortyNightslyrBucketmanH3Knuckles
  • dennisdennis Registered User regular
    edited January 14
    Bungie is effectively taking on a new job as a self-publisher which is, to be frank, rather a lot.

    According to wikipedia, Bungie published its own games before Halo. Granted, that would have been at a much different level than they were at with Halo and have been at the last 18 years.

    dennis on
    H3Knuckles
  • DarkeSwordDarkeSword Registered User regular
    Linktm wrote: »
    I haven't laughed at a strip like this in a LONG time.

    Me too. This is an instant favorite.

    Warlock82forty
  • Warlock82Warlock82 Never pet a burning dog Registered User regular
    Yeah the punchline here was perfect

    Switch: 2143-7130-1359 | 3DS: 4983-4927-6699 | Steam: warlock82 | PSN: Warlock2282
    forty3clipseNightslyrMoridin889BucketmanThawmusZilla360H3Knuckles
  • Dark080matterDark080matter CrateriaRegistered User regular
    edited January 14
    dennis wrote: »
    Bungie is effectively taking on a new job as a self-publisher which is, to be frank, rather a lot.

    According to wikipedia, Bungie published its own games before Halo. Granted, that would have been at a much different level than they were at with Halo and have been at the last 18 years.

    Yeah for sure, I guess what I meant to say was that it is "rather a lot for the scale and complexity of modern triple-A product releases."

    Dark080matter on
  • TofystedethTofystedeth veni, veneri, vamoosi Registered User regular
    Skull2185 wrote: »
    Skull2185 wrote: »
    Going to be interesting to see how much of Activision's involvement actually contributed to the state Destiny is in. I don't think Activision has had too much influence over Blizzard, either.

    With Bungie, well at least the old Bungie, it seemed like Activision was trying to milk the cow on a more than reasonable basis.

    I have doubts that's necessarily true with Blizzard. Been sitting on their laurels with WoW for much longer than it was reasonable, and haven't made much of note besides since then...Not to say they were necessarily a *bad* thing, I'd prefer occasional but good games over yearly asset flips like we're seeing elsewhere in the industry, but even MMORPGs need to eventually evolve.

    ???

    Blizzard has released numerous games since WoW in 2004, and all of them are the games others desperately try to emulate.

    Hearthstone is the online CCG

    Overwatch is the hero-shooter behemoth that all the online games want to be. Well that and Fortnite, both games the previous FPS titan Call of Duty have emulated in the newest game.

    HotS was a bit of a dud I guess, but it's the only MOBA I personally find to be enjoyable.

    Also Diablo 3, despite it's poor PC launch, has become one of the greatest arpg's ever

    Even WoW has apparently been updated and evolved through expansions that have generally been well received until this most recent one (I think)

    I think we can all agree blizzard hasn't brought their A game since Rock'n'Roll Racing.

    steam_sig.png
    Dark080matterNightslyrkimeH3Knuckles
  • RatherDashing89RatherDashing89 Registered User regular
    edited January 14
    Blizzard as we once knew it probably died long ago and Activision has been wearing their skin like a mask. It remains to be seen whether Bungie has any creativity left (and whether they will choose to use it, or instead opt to take what they learned at Activision and proceed to make slightly smaller cash grabs on their own).

    If there do go the white hat route, I certainly believe they can do it. Hellblade was a perfect example of the fact that AA is possible and that studios who have some games under their belt can put out a product without a massive publisher.


    EDIT: Upon reflection, I shouldn't have intimated that BlizzActiBungee don't have creativity. That's the one good thing the company does still seem to have retained. Blizzard and Bungee games at least (not so much CoD, imo) are still good games buried under the aggressive monetezation. Still, I don't think you could extract Blizzard-That-Was from what we know as Blizzard today.

    RatherDashing89 on
    Dark080matterZilla360
  • v2miccav2micca Registered User regular

    I get the basic premise of the comic, but I think people are giving Bungie way too much credit here. Without Activision mandating regular releases, we will hopefully see the end of half-baked garbage DLC like Curse of Osiris and Warmind. But, I suspect that Activision has been less of a driving force behind some of Bungie's more controversial moves than people think. And it does feel like the deal with Netease is being down played. Netease is not the kind of company you get into bed with if your goal is improving the customer experience.

    fortyH3Knuckles
  • BriareosHCRBriareosHCR Registered User new member
    Maybe, just *maybe*, this leads to Bungie bringing the Marathon trilogy to modern day game engines. c:

  • Johnny17Johnny17 Registered User regular
    The strip would be more poignant with a bleeding anus.

  • lionheartssjlionheartssj Bartertown Chief Merchant BartertownRegistered User regular
    My understanding of the Activision Blizzard merger was that Blizzard still operates fairly autonomously (from Activision). So their actions aren't necessarily a result of Activision's edict.

    cB557fortyH3Knuckles
  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    I think back to Bungie splitting from Microsoft, as well. It really seems like Bungie just wants to be the rebellious teenager, always running away from home and shouting "You're not my real dad!"

    What is this I don't even.
    MarcinMNH3Knuckles
  • LucascraftLucascraft Registered User regular
    More likely they need money to fund their games, and companies like Microsoft and Activision are willing to pay the bills because Bungie has a reputation for making fun video games. So Bungie gets their money, realizes being under the thumb of a major publisher sucks, so they get out. But then they need money again and the cycle repeats.

    H3Knuckles
  • v2miccav2micca Registered User regular
    My understanding of the Activision Blizzard merger was that Blizzard still operates fairly autonomously (from Activision). So their actions aren't necessarily a result of Activision's edict.

    That was the original arrangement. Activision has altered the deal, pray they don't alter it further.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Lucascraft wrote: »
    More likely they need money to fund their games, and companies like Microsoft and Activision are willing to pay the bills because Bungie has a reputation for making fun video games. So Bungie gets their money, realizes being under the thumb of a major publisher sucks, so they get out. But then they need money again and the cycle repeats.

    Yeah, that's kind of what I said. Wanting all the pros and none of the cons that come with maturity.

    What is this I don't even.
  • RatherDashing89RatherDashing89 Registered User regular
    I don't know how any of this works, but is it possible this was always on the table? I mean, everyone seems to interpret this as a messy, combative break with Bungee taking their ball and going home. But I think it could be healthy for companies to work together for a while, share resources and creativity, and then separate. Considering the alternative seems to be the developer either being subsumed entirely by the developer, or being shuttered as a scapegoat for a dying or "not profitable enough" IP.

    Dark080matterH3Knuckles
  • Dark080matterDark080matter CrateriaRegistered User regular
    I don't know how any of this works, but is it possible this was always on the table? I mean, everyone seems to interpret this as a messy, combative break with Bungee taking their ball and going home. But I think it could be healthy for companies to work together for a while, share resources and creativity, and then separate. Considering the alternative seems to be the developer either being subsumed entirely by the developer, or being shuttered as a scapegoat for a dying or "not profitable enough" IP.

    A wise man once said that everything in the universe has a beginning, a middle, and an end. That goes for relationships, companies, and company relationships too, one must imagine. Trying to pretend otherwise, that something with observable characteristics might be made immortal, is a fairly common human delusion.

  • KredKred Registered User regular
    Skull2185 wrote: »

    Even WoW has apparently been updated and evolved through expansions that have generally been well received until this most recent one (I think)

    WoW has indeed evolved quite a bit. If you had stopped playing after Wrath, for example, and jumped back in now it would be almost unrecognizable. Xpacs have been all over the place in overall reception. IMO it would go like this.

    1. Burning Crusade - really good, kind of the foundation of the whole game.
    2. Wrath of the Lich King - Excellent, best xpac by a mile.
    3. Cataclysm - Forgettable
    4. Mists of Pandaria - Pretty good, depends a lot on whether you like the Pandaran race or not.
    5. Warlords of Draenor - Ugh, just, no. Quite bad.
    6. Legion - Reasonably good. Maybe just lowered expectations at this point, but I enjoyed it.
    7. Battle for Azeroth - The content itself is ok, but many new mechanics and features are not working well. Very buggy, even now.

    Every change they make is bitched about endlessly of course, but there are still plenty of players. Other MMOs are happy to have a 200k or so players, and many in that range are still profitable. WoW peaked in Wrath with 12 million players. They stopped reporting numbers a while back, but even the most pessimistic estimates put them at 2 - 3 million right now. Even in decline WoW is still in a totally different league.

    That said, as a long time player I can definitely see Activision's influence. Personally I think WoW will go F2P in the near future. It's almost there now. They changed how the free trial worked slowly over time, and without fanfare. But now there is no purchase to make up front, you can simply download the client, pay $15 for a month of access, and you can play everything except the current xpac. That's up to level 110, and 6 expansions worth of content. If you took your time, exploring each xpac fully, that is a LOT of content. Play the auction house a bit, make enough gold and you can pay for your sub with in game gold.

    Anyway, I don't know how much of Blizzard's current troubles are due to Activision meddling, but they are definitely in trouble. Unfortunately a lot of the people that built the company and drove much of their success are now gone.

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