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Penny Arcade - Comic - Hero Phase

DogDog Registered User, Administrator, Vanilla Staff admin

Hero Phase!

Penny Arcade - Comic - Hero Phase

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

Read the full story here

KoopahTroopahH3KnucklesAndy Joe

Posts

  • cynnicysmcynnicysm Registered User regular
    am i the only person who reads most two-words-with-three-syllables in the "cross-fire" voice? "skull magic! you get caught up in it! skull magic!" no? just me then...

  • OverkillengineOverkillengine Registered User regular
    I'd ask what Game Pass did to deserve mobile gaming cancer...



    But it's Game Pass. Never has a community ever prompted me to turn off crossplay so fast, when normally I am a proponent of such a feature.

  • GrendusGrendus Registered User regular
    I'd ask what Game Pass did to deserve mobile gaming cancer...



    But it's Game Pass. Never has a community ever prompted me to turn off crossplay so fast, when normally I am a proponent of such a feature.

    From what everyone is saying, Diablo Immortal is great until you hit the monetization phase. Then it resorts to the same cancerous bullshit as every other mobile game - punish the player with an endless grind, offer them a quick boost for juuuuust a little cash, use hidden modifiers (things like drop rate and rarity, for example) to make the game fun again, then slowly turn those back to torture mode until the player is conditioned like a pavlovian dog to pay them every time the game becomes painful. As an added bonus, there's enough pay-to-win that the whales will just buy their way to the top, while the guppies and minnows are slowly bled dry for whatever they're worth.

    Thing is, if they turned off the "pain mode" and just left the modifiers in "fun mode" all the time with cosmetic microtransactions, the game would still be profitable and it would be yet another feather in the cap of Gamepass' live service titles (which, to its credit, it does have a number of content rich and well supported GaaS games). Instead, this is a gangrenous wound in the already badly damaged reputation of Blizzard and the Diablo IP after the fiasco that was the real money trading house in Diablo 3.

  • KoopahTroopahKoopahTroopah The koopas, the troopas. Philadelphia, PARegistered User regular
    That second panel Gabe-Thanos is pure joy. I love it.

    OverkillengineHahnsoo1el_vicioJohnny17Andy JoefurlionPailryderMagicalGoats
  • DjiemDjiem Registered User regular
    edited June 2022
    Grendus wrote: »
    Instead, this is a gangrenous wound in the already badly damaged reputation of Blizzard

    The problem is: who cares about reputation when you're making insane amounts of money no matter what?

    The sad truth is that unethical, borderline illegal shit will always pay more than hard, ethical work.

    Djiem on
    dennisMoridin889H3KnucklesV1mTofystedethfurlionMagicalGoats
  • dennisdennis aka bingley Registered User regular
    Djiem wrote: »
    Grendus wrote: »
    Instead, this is a gangrenous wound in the already badly damaged reputation of Blizzard

    The problem is: who cares about reputation when you're making insane amounts of money no matter what?

    The sad truth is that unethical, borderline illegal shit will always pay more than hard, ethical work.

    Yeah, reputation is for the unfortunate saps who'll be working there or holding onto their stock in 10 years time.

  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    I'd ask what Game Pass did to deserve mobile gaming cancer...



    But it's Game Pass. Never has a community ever prompted me to turn off crossplay so fast, when normally I am a proponent of such a feature.

    How would you even say gamepass has a community versus just xbox in general? So is this just trying to say xbox is bad?

    I would like some money because these are artisanal nuggets of wisdom philistine.

    pleasepaypreacher.net
  • HevachHevach Registered User regular
    edited June 2022
    Bob Microsoft was killed in 1996 just before his first birthday. Also he was a dog.

    https://youtu.be/5teG6ou8mWU

    Hevach on
    H3KnucklesdennisMagicalGoats
  • Man in the MistsMan in the Mists Registered User regular
    Tycho is not wrong.

  • OverkillengineOverkillengine Registered User regular
    edited June 2022
    Preacher wrote: »
    I'd ask what Game Pass did to deserve mobile gaming cancer...



    But it's Game Pass. Never has a community ever prompted me to turn off crossplay so fast, when normally I am a proponent of such a feature.

    How would you even say gamepass has a community versus just xbox in general? So is this just trying to say xbox is bad?

    Hardly. There is a considerable difference in the quality of team mate one gets from Game Pass vs vanilla console crossplay. I've experienced both. (Game Pass covers PC too btw) It's more a commentary on the commitment to learning how to play a game varying wildly when it comes to someone having to actually buy the game vs it just being something in the bundle they are checking out that day. Rando Calrissian on a dollar tour is objectively not a fun team mate to get to the point I learned to just shut off crossplay to filter out the Game Pass crowd (again, which can be either PC or Xbox) in Back4Blood for example. Literally worse than bots.

    And before this gets taken for elitist gatekeeping, my expectations of teammates are pretty low, especially when it comes to automated matchmaking and its expected imperfections.

    Overkillengine on
  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    But again how do you know its gamepass players they aren't like tagged specifically in games as being the lowly gamepass user?

    I would like some money because these are artisanal nuggets of wisdom philistine.

    pleasepaypreacher.net
  • OverkillengineOverkillengine Registered User regular
    edited June 2022
    In Back 4 Blood specifically, Game Pass users are tagged with an Xbox icon whether or not they are on PC or console using it, and they afaik shared a matchmaking pool too. Again, I give two shits about the hardware platform. I've done crossplay in games pre Game Pass era and it was not this kind of shitshow.

    (additional fun fact - game pass users in party chat were audible to the rest of the team even though they thought their comms were private - and the one amusing thing about that was listening to them trashtalk the rest of their team when they were the ones constantly getting downed or running out of ammo even when getting fed the latter)

    And yes, before you get on a high horse, I am aware I am also filtering out decent players by disabling crossplay. The issue is that it is still worth it due to the frequency of the matchmaking experience being a dumpster fire with crossplay on, or at least it was back during the initial release, and turning it off resulted in an immediate improvement in my gameplay experience. I chalk it up to a massive number of Game Pass users being, for lack of a better description, tourists. And while I am hardly super srs bsns xxx_noscope_420_tryhard_carlos_hathcock_xxx gamer dude, it gets old real fast being subjected to gaggles of jackasses that refuse to learn basic concepts like try not to shoot birds or alarm doors or try to stay together or don't fight hordes in the open if you have a choice, and none of which are hardware platform related.

    And of course I know one of the predictable response I'll get to these observations is that I could step up and try to teach them.


    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!! Sure, and everyone sang Kumbaya and clapped and became Albert Einstein.

    Please. I've gamed for decades now. I'll just turn the portal (crossplay) to hell (Game Pass) off and oddly enough have to deal with far less demons, it's a simpler and more effective use of my time.

    Overkillengine on
  • SirBillSirBill Denver, CORegistered User regular
    Not sure if this is where we comment on the comic text, but I have also been wondering for a while what long-term effects things like Game Pass will have on gaming companies, and the games they put out... is there even such a thing as a smash hit in such a world, just because you had higher downloads than other games? It seems like it would really smooth out the revenue curves and help out companies not producing top tier games while slowly eroding quality from the best games.

  • HevachHevach Registered User regular
    edited June 2022
    SirBill wrote: »
    Not sure if this is where we comment on the comic text, but I have also been wondering for a while what long-term effects things like Game Pass will have on gaming companies, and the games they put out... is there even such a thing as a smash hit in such a world, just because you had higher downloads than other games? It seems like it would really smooth out the revenue curves and help out companies not producing top tier games while slowly eroding quality from the best games.

    Something like Game Pass gives a third party developer or publisher putting games on it some future guarantee at the cost of present potential. A developer whose prior game had high downloads and showed a substantial sign up/return spike on release may not see more money as they would with a strictly Steam or EGS release, but they will command a better deal to put their next game on the service, meaning if that game is a flop they at least managed to sell some of that risk to Microsoft and can still afford to make a third.

    For Microsoft itself it's a more straightforward tradeoff in terms of first party games. They forego some of the notoriously fickle and unpredictable revenue spikes of new releases for a more predictable and stable monthly cash flow. This blunts the effect of both hits and flops as well as bridging the gap during release droughts, which can align unfortunately with quarterly investor reports to make it look like revenue collapsed when it's really business as usual.

    Hevach on
  • RatherDashing89RatherDashing89 Registered User regular
    edited June 2022
    It's not going to play out exactly the same, but we might get some hints from how streaming services have impacted TV and movies, since that shift has pretty much already happened entirely.

    The positive take is that stories can be told in whatever length is most appropriate, instead of cramming it into a movie or stretching it into a serial that has to end on a cliffhanger every week to keep people coming back.

    The negative take is that no individual show has to make its own money back, so shows might be made just to have more "content" rather than making a quality product. Red Letter Media talked about this in their recent Kenobi video, the idea that streaming services are more like keeping a buffet table full: it doesn't have to be good, just continue to keep the content treadmill full so subscriptions don't lapse.

    I could see this being both good and bad for game quality. Though I don't think it's going to completely override other factors impacting quality. AAA will continue to use microtransactions as their primary revenue stream whether the game is purchased or included in Game Pass. Indie devs will continue to make the games they want, though this might give them a bit more wiggle room to recover from less popular titles. And the AA devs in between will continue to be torn in both directions as to whether they want to be indie darlings or play with the big boys (and the baggage that comes with).

    RatherDashing89 on
  • LttlefootLttlefoot Registered User regular
    Are there any gamepass exclusives, or is everything on there available to buy outright?

  • Emperor MegamanEmperor Megaman Registered User regular
    That Thanos Gabe is perfect.

    Golden Yak
  • dennisdennis aka bingley Registered User regular
  • DjiemDjiem Registered User regular
    edited July 2022
    dennis wrote: »

    Diablo Immortal will make more money than all other Diablos combined, and then "real gamers" will keep wondering why game companies don't seem to care about their "image."

    Djiem on
    dennisV1mfurlion
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    edited July 2022
    Djiem wrote: »
    dennis wrote: »

    Diablo Immortal will make more money than all other Diablos combined, and then "real gamers" will keep wondering why game companies don't seem to care about their "image."

    $1.6M/day (the $49M Diablo Immortal earned divided by 30 days) is the equivalent of World of Warcraft having 3.3M active subscribers. WoW peaked at 12M subscribers. Which is $5.9M/day. So, Diablo Immortal is doing ok, but not success redefining for Blizzard yet. It is better than WoW is currently doing I hear, so that is good for them. It's also equivalent to selling 816,000 $60 games. The internet tells me Diablo III sold 30M copies. They sold 3.5M in the first 24 hours. And that had micro-transactions via the auction house too, so for awhile it was making even more money. So I don't think this is quite the slam dunk it sounds like at first. But if they can keep those people locked in for 3 years, they will be ahead of Diablo III (not counting the expansion).

    YoungFrey on
    H3Knuckles
  • dennisdennis aka bingley Registered User regular
    Small corrections. WoW actually got up to 46M (in terms of active monthly subs) in 2017. If you got the 12M (in 2010) from wikipedia, it's a bit out of date. Of course, there's the question of how many of those are paying subscribers. In 2011, they released the Starter Edition that let you play for free up to level 20.

    I don't think anyone would compare DI to WoW. WoW was a beast. It existed in a different world of competition for online games.

    Of course, DI probably didn't cost anywhere near as much to develop and run as WoW did/does. We're talking about hundreds of millions a year just to keep it going. I think DI is probably going to be a lot cheaper to keep running as a cash printing machine.

    YoungFrey
  • YoungFreyYoungFrey Registered User regular
    edited July 2022
    dennis wrote: »
    Small corrections. WoW actually got up to 46M (in terms of active monthly subs) in 2017. If you got the 12M (in 2010) from wikipedia, it's a bit out of date. Of course, there's the question of how many of those are paying subscribers. In 2011, they released the Starter Edition that let you play for free up to level 20.

    I don't think anyone would compare DI to WoW. WoW was a beast. It existed in a different world of competition for online games.

    Of course, DI probably didn't cost anywhere near as much to develop and run as WoW did/does. We're talking about hundreds of millions a year just to keep it going. I think DI is probably going to be a lot cheaper to keep running as a cash printing machine.

    I saw the 46M number, but discounted it because I knew it didn't translate directly into $15/month. And with the steady decline after Lich King, I figured it was safe to assume that no number boost would actually put them over 12M paying subscribers/month.

    And while I totally agree on the cost/upkeep I think that may also lead to less prolonged interest in Diablo Immortal. One reason World of Warcraft was so addictive was it was huge.

    YoungFrey on
    dennis
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