Tag: unbranding the sheep

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Perils Of What We Call “Journalism”

    Over the past eight years, I have made the move from someone who occasionally writes about video games on my personal blog, to someone who’s run a large-scale fan site, to someone who wrote for a decent site, to someone who helped build up another site, to someone who is now paid to write about […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: Missing The Forest For The Trees

    UK site gamesindustry.biz recently released a story about how gaming industry analyst Michael Patcher broke the seal on EA’s next step in Project Ten Dollar, by stating that the company is going to charge for premium DLC before release. Picture the demo for Battlefield: Bad Company 2 and imagine it costs money, and you essentially […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Enablers

    As a pro-consumer columnist, reporting on Activision makes me a lot of different feelings, usually at the same time. There is shock that a company can be so brazen about the fact that the ONLY thing they care about is profit, and anything else be damned. There is revulsion that a carpetbagger like Robert Kotick […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: Building a House On The Corpses of Indie Developers

    I use Apple products often. I own an iPhone, mainly because the alternative – the Blackberry – doesn’t really appeal to me. The fact that I already had AT&T as my wireless provider greased the skids. Therefore, I run iTunes on my PC, mainly because it’s mandatory for me to sync my iPhone, but also […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep – Why I Almost Pulled The SOCOM Review

    Last Friday, I reviewed the new PSP game SOCOM: U.S. Navy Seals Fireteam Bravo 3. I gave it a fairly positive write-up, and had no problems getting into the online component of the game, even if there was a sparse number of people due to my review going up before the game’s release. With that […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: Big Trouble in Little Japan

    We consistently harp on how the American video game industry is affected by various forces within it. Most of the time, we only care about how specific releases are affected, if American jobs are affected, or if American release dates are affected. It’s not often we really look into the Japanese game industry unless it’s […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Neverending DRM Dance

    Ubisoft is the latest company to cause a stink among gamers with their announcement that starting with The Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom beta, they are instituting a new DRM policy that requires a perpetual connection to internet for any of their games. Ironically, as the music industry decides to gradually back away from […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Cost of Innovation vs. The Reward of Convention

    If you asked two different types of people about Electronic Arts’ CEO John Riccitiello, you would get two different answers. One group – gamers, or at least those that look past the yearly Madden release – would speak highly of him. Since taking over in 2007, he mended the damaged relationship between the company and […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Digital Conundrum

    With their latest 360 update, Microsoft has added the ability to download actual 360 titles to players’ hard drives. This is a significant step for Microsoft, who before this was only offering original XBox games and their XBLA and “Indie” game lineup to be downloaded. Unfortunately, like every step a company the size of Microsoft […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: If An MMO Falls In The Forest And No One’s Logged In…

    A look at the failure or near-failure of some high-profile MMOs, and what players can do to avoid wasting their money on the next Hellgate: London

  • Unbranding the Sheep: If You Wear a Bullseye, Expect To Get Shot

    I saw an interesting article Monday on Kotaku that basically proved everything I’ve been saying about DRM right: it was a piece showing the top 10 most torrented video games, courtesy of TorrentFreak. I found it interesting because it shows exactly where piracy stands in this industry.

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Sheep Are Revolting! Viva la BAAAAAAvolution!

    I wrote an article way back in May about the SecuROM DRM that’s included in Mass Effect and Spore, how damaging it was to paying consumers, their PCs, and how disingenuous it was to call it copy protection when 1) it’s profiting off of legitimate users, and 2) the DRM was cracked, re-cracked, then cracked […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: In Praise of… .Squeenix!? (UPDATED)

    Friday, Square Enix announced their intention for a friendly takeover of Tecmo, at a price of about 920Â¥, a 30% premium of their current stock price.

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The ESA’s Loss of Good Faith

    Something came across the news yesterday that caught my attention: the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) hired a man by the name of Michael Gallagher to be their new General Council. Regular, everyday gamers don’t know who that is or why it’s relevant, but if you read between the lines, this could be a very bad […]

  • Unbranding the Sheep: The Beatings Will Continue Until Our Stock Price Improves

    In my last article, I gave a hypothetical situation of what could happen if the providers of DRM for today’s downloadable games and content just all of a sudden stopped supporting their system.

  • Unbranding the Sheep: Screw The Rules! We Have Money!

    If you don’t directly follow the IT newsletters and RSS feeds, you might have missed a little tidbit about Microsoft shutting down their DRM key servers on August 31st for MSN Music files figuring they were no longer needed with the Zune setup.

  • Unbranding The Sheep: Ben Franklin Kills Mike Newell In Cold Blood

    It’s fair to say that, to the naked eye, the video game industry has never been stronger. Between three regular consoles to play, all with their own online sevices that enable people to buy new and old games in their underwear without leaving the comfort of their own bedroom/living room/parents’ basement (as if we, as a people, needed LESS human interaction), two handheld consoles, a robust PC gaming market that handles both the hardcore freaks and the more casual, Popcap trained gamer, and add in the fact that every one of the above mentioned has great games almost literally overflowing from it, and there’s almost too much choice for the average gamer. The bins at local game stores are brimming with quality titles, from the newest games to the under $10 bargain bins, and if you can’t find something that suits your fancy – whatever it may be – then you simply do not like video games. Due to all of this, the games industry has gone mainstream. What used to be something that was solely the realm of kids and basement dwellers is now accepted on a level with more contemporary movies and music. Instead of movies using video games as a way to extend a license, it’s gone the other way around, with mixed results (though the results are more favourable if someone goes back in time about 15 years and takes and throws Uwe Boll into a meat grinder), as companies grow, franchises become worldwide commodities, and just havng the right name on a box is enough to make multi millions of dollars. The video gaming industry has become just as high stakes as the rest of the entertainment sector, and due to this, the money is abundant. The money is so abundant, as a matter of fact, that it’s virtually killing everything that make video games in themselves – as an entertainment medium and not a commodity – great. In fact, the parallels between now and 1983-1984 in terms of where the industry is going are startling.

  • Unbranding the Sheep: Paid Emulators vs. Established Emulators

    One of the main advantages of the recently released Nintendo Wii is the Virtual Console. This beautiful invention allows players – for anywhere from $5 to $10 USD – to download picture perfect copies of older games from the Nintendo Entertainment System to the Nintendo 64, with even some old PC Engine and Genesis/Mega Drive […]