Sunday, November 1

A gamer's rant: We're getting pimped

You know, gamers are the most passionate group of individuals. Some will defend their console of choice vigorously, and others even start petitions to make sure their voices are heard on a particular issue. Many are too busy to get involved too deep, but that's not to say they're aloof of the situations plaguing the industry.

Today, while reading through some comments, I stumbled upon a very long post by a member of our readership. His issue was with publishers, developers, and console makers. According to him, they're taking advantage of gamers financially, trying to squeeze out every last penny from us. He even created characters in his post. We thought you'd find this interesting. The topic was about EA predicting the end of disc based games in less than ten years. Read on.

Original Post:

EA sports boss Peter Moore predicted that the disc based games don't have ten more years of life left in them.

"Look at the platform we're on, it's a burning platform," Moore said at the 5th play Digital Media Conference, according to IGN, "as a concept, do you stay on the platform and face certain death, or do you jump in the water and face probable death? Most of you would choose probable death, so you start moving toward a hybrid model of digital distribution."

"As an industry, I still think we may be as many a decade away from saying goodbye to physical discs," Moore continued. "The important question is what does the next console look like? Does it actually have a hard disk drive?"

I don't know about you Mr. Moore, but I sure do hope the next wave of consoles have hard disk drives, I'm a collector, I like to touch and feel stuff. I like to see Uncharted 2, and Halo 3: ODST sitting on my shelf, as I ever so often dust them off and go for a "spin."

Do you think it's a good idea to do away with discs altogether? Share your thoughts.

That was the original post, now here's his rant:

This is a bad idea on many fronts...

1) What if I want to sell my game? You can't because its now useless as a re-sellable product.

2) What if I want to loan it to a friend? You can't because protection rights will prevent it if they haven't already done that. So you're game is basically locked to your console. If your friend doesn't have the game you want to play, you'll have to bring your hard drive, re-download it, or something similar... from the way these guys are talking you might have to walk to your friends home with your console too.

3) Not having a physical product is nice to revisit those retro games that weren't originally released on your modern console (i.e. XBox's San Andreas ported to XBox360 as a download). But like Ernice said, I want to see my collection if I'm collector of great games.

4) I like the option to download a game, but I'm not interested in a DOWNLOAD ONLY world of games. Look at the new PSP GO, it represents the direction that Executives are thinking. Unfortunately for them, I can predict that the PSP GO will FLIP FLOP & FIZZLE. Personally, a hybrid device (which SONY already has in the original PSP) that can handle physical media and downloads is a much better option.


5) I truly despise the planned prostitution of the gaming community by console designers. If PSP GO gains traction (which I expect it won't) that will be the green light for other consoles to jump off the fence and pimp the remaining gamers.

What do I mean?

We already subscribe to electricity, internet, and an online-gaming account. But with their proposed intentions we're suppose to go buy a console that requires games we can't touch, can't sell, and can't loan to or from a friend.

What should that mean to you? Well in business terms, what it's saying is this...

BUSINESS MAN #1: We need a way to fight the economic crunch the increase sales to get that Christmas bonus looking right.

BUSINESS MAN #2: Hmmm, I know. Let's pimp the gaming community! We'll be digital pimps!

BUSINESS MAN #1: Digital pimps, is that legal?

BUSINESS MAN #2: Sure is, check this out! First, we remove legacy compatibility for older games and accessories so gamers have to buy games for or latest console. Booyah!

BUSINESS MAN #1: Yeah, yeah! Sounding good.

BUSINESS MAN #2: But wait, that's not all! Next, we phase out the physical disc and go all digital-download!

BUSINESS MAN #1: hmmm, but won't the gamers be pissed they can't get their hands on the game?

BUSINESS MAN #2: Dude, they're already downloading them these days, and since we control what the console can do we just make it all digital and the gamers don't have a choice but to get the download instead of the disc. Mo Money, Mo Money!

BUSINESS MAN #1: Music to my ears because you know we'll cut out the fees to distribute DISC's and save money while maintaining the same cost to the gamers. YES! And you already heard about that mail man stealing all our stuff the other day so we won't be seeing that either. SWEET!

BUSINESS MAN #2: I know, I got the best ideas. Sony's PSP GO ripped off my idea big time. But a least we got the name, we're "Digital Pimps" and we're here to prostitute all gamers.

BUSINESS MAN #1: And if anyone asks, we'll say we're doing it for security purposes and for our ease of use... like how the government does with us when they want to make drastic changes we don't necessarily need or want.



Is this true? Or is Erskin hallucinating? Share your thoughts.

11/02/09 Ernice Gilbert


  1. A business perspective
    One of the counters to shifting game distribution to a digital only format is the customers’ ability to re-sell the game. While this has become a common practice with companies like Gamestop and even Best Buy it completely ignores the original maker of the game. From their perspective they are losing money every time a person buys a used game. Why because the person who bought a used copy of the game should have bought a new copy. If the original price was too high they could wait until the game came down in price. From the game developers perspective they are losing big money because of the used game market. And let’s face it game developers are not in the business simply because they like games. Personally, I like to sell my games when I’m done with them and use the credits to purchase another new game. But I can see why the game industry would want to prevent that from occurring.
    The second major complaint against digital distribution is very similar to the 1st. It revolves around the loss of ability to loan a game to a friend. Again, from the game developer’s perspective, if the friend wants to play the game they should buy a copy and not borrow it. Every games loaned to a friend is a lost game sale. While loaning a friend a copy of Halo 3 or selling it to a used game dealer benefits the individual gamer is does not help the game developer or publisher in the slightest way.
    While I prefer the ownership of the physical game disc, I can see that digital distribution is coming and that in my opinion it is less than 10 years away….

  2. I think he has a point, these mega companies are behind the almighty dollar.

    But can you blame them? No, that's the reason they're in business

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  4. I believe that Mr. Anonymous is absolutely right about what viewpoint developers have, and they're right to feel that way because it costs them money to produce games and entertaining media.

    With that said, I really don't care about the viewpoint of the developers. I might be more sympathetic if I were in the developers shoes, but I'm not. They don't pay me, my friends, my family, or perfect strangers to care about their viewpoint.

    That is the conflict of our interests and the reason our support for their viewpoint is bleek... and vice-versa.

    However, maybe we can find common ground where the developer doesn't feel the need to pimp gamers and the gamer doesn't feel pimped.

    Suggestion #1: Join the "buy-back for cheap" & "sell for more-than-cheap" Pre-Owned Game Market to profit where smaller retail stores repeatedly take profits on the front-end after its been sold at retail cost.

    Suggestion #2: Profit Sharing is a great incentive to offer gamers for recommending a store bought game. Or recommending friends to use (your new) Pre-Owned Game Market to sell back old games and buy Pre-Owned Games.

    With these 2 suggestions in place, developers would not only capitalize on the retail sales but also on the aftermarket Pre-Own sales.

    Obviously, the gamers have games from many developers which presents a challenge.

    Solution: Developers should form a developers team that profits as a team on the "After-Retail sales market".

    I'm confident there will be resistance to this idea by many developers about teaming up. But look at it this way, developers currently have zero success in this area and if they could profit even the slightest bit it would help their overall bottom-line.

    That said, gamers would absolutely love their initiative to better serve the needs of the gaming community.

    How do I know? Every gamer would own practically every game they could get their hands on if it didn't cost so much money and if they could share in the profits with incentives on the front or back-end.


    I agree with Mr. Anonymous, but my personal belief is that gamers are Unanimous in their belief that gamers give more for less and an all digital media form is a Pimpers Paradise.

    Will they take my suggestions? Who knows. Until I see a different direction that serves a common goal between developers console makers and gamers... Just get the powder ready, and stand in line for your chance to get Pimp Slapped at the cash register.