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Civ5 - shipping with Steamworks * plus Digital Deluxe Edition

Discussion in 'News Updates' started by V. Soma, May 6, 2010.

  1. Nick Danger

    Nick Danger Steam should be optional

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    The future of Civ?

    It's a fairly long article, with references, that shows the mindset of Activision's CEO Robert A. Kotick regarding games and how to treat gamers.

    And yes, Take-Two Interactive Software isn't Activision, but acquisitions do occur. Both EA (tried a hostile takeover of Take-Two in 2008 and failed) and Activision are possibilities. From Feb 2008: Returning to EA's buyout proposal of Take-Two, Kotick said that the Grand Theft Auto publisher didn't meet Activision's acquisition standards. "On the Take-Two front, we have had a well-stated criteria on what we are interested in in an acquisition. We need a history of profitability, good management, proprietary technology or franchise, history of multimillion-unit sellers, they would have to be nondilutive and operating margin credos. For us, Take-Two didn't fulfill those requirements."

    So back in Feb 2008 Take-Two had been considered and rejected for acquisition -- will the changes being made to Civ5 (forced steam, $10 DLC at release for merely 1 civ, etc.) change that?

    Even without a takeover, is what we're seeing now with Civ5 the early stages of what Activision has done to Starcraft 2 and its other titles?

    Among the many interesting quotes in the first link:

    "November 6, 2008: One can see actual changes in the corporate policy relatively early, Activision Blizzard drops titles like Brütal Legend, Ghostbusters, Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena, WET and a few others, because they do not fit the new business model. Shortly after that, SIERRA Entertainment also gets shut down with an impending sale of the company remaining."

    Kotick regarding this:

    With respect to the franchises that don’t have the potential to be exploited every year across every platform, with clear sequel potential that can meet our objectives of, over time, becoming $100 million-plus franchises, that’s a strategy that has worked very well for us.

    Penny Arcade's take

    If Civ doesn't already meet Kotick's criteria (yearly multi-platform "exploitables", demonstrated sequel potential, $100M+(?) franchise) some of the changes to Civ5 seems designed to get it there -- forced Steam, DLC at release, etc.

    The good news is that meeting the 'Kotick criteria' would keep Civ from meeting the fate of being dropped like Brütal Legend, Ghostbusters, Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena, WET, etc., and Firaxis meeting SIERRA's fate. The bad news is Civ getting the 'Kotick treatment'.

    Time will tell whether this is paranoia ;) or prescience... :(
     
  2. moopoo

    moopoo King

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    holy crap. that is... sickening.

    Thankfully it doesn't apply to Civ5 (I sincerely doubt 2k want to take the fun out of making games :)), but it did make me laugh a little when he mentioned regarding battle.net "that even when living under the same roof and another person only wanting to try the game or play with you casually, they still have to own a full second copy of the game + all Add-On keys to be able to do this." Steam, anyone?
     
  3. Rub'Rum

    Rub'Rum Hates acronyms

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    One of the worst plagues of modern PC gaming (you could even say console gaming as they seem to like to limit multiplayer to online (e.g. GTA 4, no couch coop)).

    Although in the case of Battle.net, that only applied if you wanted to play these games on the network with your friend. You could still play Diablo 2 or Starcraft with your friends in the same house with one copy, you just had to go for LAN and direct connection to IP and exchange CDs. These days though even that becomes tough. Gotta go through loops and stuff.
     
  4. Arakhor

    Arakhor Dremora Courtier Moderator

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    People get greedy and the more power they have, the greedier they get. I long despair of modern games - if Bethesda and Paradox go the same way, I'm never buying computer games again :(
     
  5. myturn

    myturn Chieftain

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    Nice work Nick.
    Penny Arcade nails it well. At least manages to put smile on my face.
    To me, this panel came in mind when i first heard about Steam implementation in Civ5.
    Spoiler :
    (from Transmetropolitan by Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson)

    :coffee:Well... I won't.
     
  6. milan

    milan Chieftain

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    Since you mentioned it, Starcraft 2 will have no LAN, no cross server play, you'll even have to pay extra for custom maps :eek:. Activision Blizzard is even trying to take over the Korean Starcraft e-sport scene at the moment and the SC pro-scene may be on the verge of destruction because of that - after August there will be no progaming SC matches unless the tournament organizers pay royalties to Blizzard :( source. And guess who is in charge of the company - Bobby Kotick :sad:

    Here's the complete list of crap that will come with Starcraft2, it's appalling and very similar to the concerns many of us have about Civ+Steam: here (note how this guy's thread is conveniently locked by the battle.net moderators)
    Spoiler :



    Our beloved game companies from the past are no more. Now they've turned into power-hungry bloodsucking corporations greedy for money and total control over gamers. And what is more concerning is that their marketing strategies actually succeed in brainwashing quite large portion of the gamers to continue doing it.. :(

    A few months back I was excited about the release of the sequels to my two favorite games - Civ and Starcraft, and as it turns out at the moment I'll have to boycott both of them because of the companies' greed for power and control. Where's the gaming world heading to, I'm sick to my stomach :sad:
     
  7. Drakarska

    Drakarska Epic Dadness

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    It's also nice to see that EA is going to charge you an additional $10 to play online if you buy a game used (Game Stop, Game Store, etc), and yes, that is on top of the monthly fee you pay to suscribe. Interesting parralels we seem to have beginning to shape up.
     
  8. moopoo

    moopoo King

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    God, gaming's going to hell. Kinda puts steam into perspective, but at the same time, the restrictions steam place would have been unthinkable just a couple of years ago. I've lost count of how many my friends (myself included) have bought Age of Empires 2 after playing it at a LAN.
     
  9. Magma

    Magma Prince

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    Difference between the two: Battle.net do not install useless applications, you simply get a download program through your Battle.net account so you can download the game. You can delete that when you are done downloading. Kaboom.
     
  10. Magma

    Magma Prince

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    This is only if the one who actually made the map and put time and effort into it wants money for it. Thus you could make a map and if it gets popular you could discuss with Blizzard how to earn some from it.

    As for the E-Sports area, well, it is either Blizzard or some other company earning money from it. Personally I would rather support the - without doubt - best company making computer games.
     
  11. Jean Nicollet

    Jean Nicollet Chieftain

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    I bought Orange Box and installed it on my Gateway in 2008. I already had Steam installed from playing HL. Well, after installing and registering in Steam, it said my graphics was too old. (My computer was 7 years old). So, I saved my money and got a womping new game computer in Jan 2010. Guess what: when I tried to install again on my new computer, it said Orange Box was already installed elsewhere. I went thru tech support on Steam, (took 2 weeks for them to reply) and got nowhere even though I was able to give them all information they requested. They insisted I take digital pictures of the activation card and send it to them via e-mail. I don't have a digital camera and I don't live anywhere close to a Kinko (or look a like) to do it. Their last suggestion was that I check with my friends to see if I could borrow their camera. What kind of customer service is that? I still can't play the game I bought. So, NO- I will not buy ANY product using Steam again!
     
  12. Rub'Rum

    Rub'Rum Hates acronyms

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    Compared to most brick-wall type customer service I get in every day life, that seems like pretty good customer service actually. At least they're suggesting things that you could do that would be acceptable to them as opposed to just stone-walling you.

    I still don't understand how the actual problem surfaced in the first place but anyway.
     
  13. Arakhor

    Arakhor Dremora Courtier Moderator

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    So, not stonewalling you is good customer service? That just sounds like not being no customer service.
     
  14. Jean Nicollet

    Jean Nicollet Chieftain

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    I still don't understand how the actual problem surfaced in the first place but anyway.
    When I bought the new computer, I had to install the game on it. I went through all the loops with Steam, including passwords, activation codes, etc. I even had my receipt from Best Buy. That was not enough. They want a full color copy, not photo-copy of the activation card in the game box. I do not have the device for this. I wouldn't know how to do it if I did! So, I am left with the choice of buying more techology, driving a long distance, or not playing the game. Oh, I forgot! My friend said I should just buy another game since it was only 10.00. I know- I'm being stubborn! But it's the principle of the thing. I already bought the game and they will not allow me to play it.

    So, keep in mind that just because you bought a game, that requires Steam, doesn't mean you actually own it-they can still prevent you from playing.
     
  15. Rub'Rum

    Rub'Rum Hates acronyms

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    Maybe I don't understand what "stone-walling" means then. I just imagined being stone-walled as trying to get service from a company and feeling like you're talking to a stone-wall, or a brick-wall, which is not what happened in this case. Being stone-walled would be a bad thing in my definition. Maybe my original post (first sentence) was confusing. I dunno. Not anglophone.

    I guess you could say that Steam seems to have a customer service (they tried to fix his problem by proposing stuff), as opposed to people just coming to the conclusion they can't do anything for you within seconds of talking with you. Maybe my standards are really low for customer service, but that's just my general experience in every day life really.
     
  16. Arakhor

    Arakhor Dremora Courtier Moderator

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    You used the correct word there, but I was just pointing out that not very helpful customer service is not the brick wall that alleged service operators can be.
     
  17. myturn

    myturn Chieftain

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    I will give you another example of not stone-walling you:
    You just have to learn how to live without water and food and you will save a lot of money you can use to buy game every single time you want to install it. I've heard that there is a man in india who can teach you that...
     
  18. Arakhor

    Arakhor Dremora Courtier Moderator

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    And that's just unhelpful :)
     
  19. Nick Danger

    Nick Danger Steam should be optional

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    It's been almost 3 weeks, has Valve provided you with the answers?

    And if "...what Steam can collect for you (as you do, it's publicly available what they can collect!)..." as you said, why can't we get a link to it (or however it's publically available) instead of you having to ask Valve?

    And is this really "...pretty specific..." details? We just want to know what information is collected and what things steam/steamworks does on/to our computers. We're not asking how the specifics of how this is done (programming stuff, etc.), just what is done.

    Thanks!
     
  20. myturn

    myturn Chieftain

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    Noo, how can you say that?
    It seems to me like it could be done much faster and you would depend solely on your dedication to the cause.

    But seriously, I would like to see that parts in the EULA or manual (if it has any legal relevance) where support is defined as “go take a picture of your activation card and...” I’m pretty sure that would be summed up in some fine print line that goes ‘Steam reserves all rights to change any term of this agreement…’ or something like that.

    I’ve had similar experience before (my brother did and not with Steam but these license agreements are all pretty much alike), and guess how it ended? After my brother did everything they asked and sent all pictures they wanted (twice), they’ve never replied! And this was bet-at-home online service which is as we’ve learned one of the best online gambling services today (and we have seen add at Manchester Utd. stadium, heh). After that, we’ve learned that they are also extremely hard on payout. (luckily he just did 5 euros investment and after couple games had about 60 which he wanted to withdraw, and that never happened btw)

    So have no doubt that they will cover their ass well and that if they want to force something on you, well, I’m pretty sure that they can legally do that because of you agreed to it.

    Hell, just googled ‘steam eula’ and found this (dated but still) pearl…

    Update to Valve Steam EULA We can take your game AND your Money
    "2. In the case of a one-time purchase of a product license (e.g., purchase of a single game) from Valve, Valve may choose to terminate or cancel your Subscription in its entirety or may terminate or cancel only a portion of the Subscription (e.g., access to the software via Steam) and Valve may, but is not obligated to, provide access (for a limited period of time) to the download of a stand-alone version of the software and content associated with such one-time purchase."

    "It's not because they can do it that they will." -blissful commenter
    Spoiler :
    RTFM
     

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