Lazy Saturdays #05 – Not So Lazy

Well, for a change, this particular Saturday has been anything but lazy. Why? Because I worked from 7 a.m. till noon. It was all overtime, too, which is very nice. Waking up at 6 a.m.? Not so nice. But, I’ve been doing it for the last two weeks. Last night I passed out at seven fucking p.m. No, I’m not kidding. I was exhausted. Why was I exhausted? Because I can’t adjust to this early morning bullshit, that’s why. I’m a NIGHT person, goddammit.

But, while I might prefer the hours of my previous job, my current job doesn’t make me hate my life on a regular basis. So. I suppose it’s a good tradeoff.

Anyway, um, yeah. It’s still Alan Wake week. I actually haven’t managed to play much more of the game. (Working 47 hours in a week tends to limit one’s playtime.) But, I’m hoping to get some more time in today, and I have tomorrow completely off, so you’ll hear some more about it for sure. And who knows, maybe Ethan will find the time to write more about it than an obligatory paragraph at the end of Scatter Storming.

Well, while I have your attention, can I interest you in some links?

Freakin’ Sweet: original BioShock pitch posted online for the reading pleasure of allnow this is just really fucking cool. If you have any interest in BioShock, and even if you don’t, you should hit the link above. Eight years after Irrational Games pitched the idea of BioShock, the nine-page document has been made available to the public. Instead of explaining to you how cool that is, I suggest you hit the link and see for yourself.

Well, actually, I will explain how cool it is. I’ve never actually seen or read a videogame pitch before, so it was definitely an interesting look into what it takes to get a publisher to back your project. Also, given the ambitious nature of BioShock both as a game and a concept, it’s obviously quite interesting to see how all the many ideas behind the game originated. Some of them remained intact, many of them changed, and some of them actually ended up in BioShock 2, as it were.

Anyway. Seriously. Click the link. It’s the most interesting thing you’ll read this weekend.

Rockstar: If you buy our games for your kids, you’re a “terrible parent”I’m not sure why this strikes me as odd, but… it just does. While speaking to the BBC about the recently-released Red Dead Redemption, Rockstar’s Lazlow Jones had this to say about the violent and/or questionable content that’s become a trademark of Rockstar’s software:

Our games are not designed for young people. If you’re a parent and buy one of our games for your child you’re a terrible parent. We design games for adults because we’re adults. There’s a lot of kids games out there that we’re not interested in playing. Just like you enjoy watching movies and TV shows with adult themes and language and violence that’s the kind of thing we seek to produce.

Well, the dude hits the nail on the head, I can’t deny that. But to me, there’s just something distinctly suck-up-ish about a Rockstar rep blasting parents who purchase violent games for their children; especially given the rather colorful, controversial past the company has had. (Hot Coffee, anyone?) Still, though, he’s totally right. Parents who buy that stuff for their 6-year-olds are the reason we have the controversy in the first place.

I stole this from Gizmodo because I thought it was funny.

AT&T jacks up early termination fees, offers stupid explanation – I’m positive that there’s more to this than meets the eye. Don’t know what I’m implying? Well, give me a moment.

AT&T, the sole provider (currently) of the iPhone in North America, is raising the early service termination fee for smartphones from $175 to a whopping $325. Nope, that’s not a typo; they really are giving their customers 150 more reasons to stay with them. (At least for the initial two years.)

So, if you were hoping to get out of that expensive iPhone contract sometime soon, you might wanna think again. However, if you’re the owner of an AT&T feature phone or messaging phone, your ETF just got lowered by $25. What could the reason be for all this? Here’s AT&T’s explanation:

The idea is, and we think that it’s fair approach, that if you spend less on a device, your early termination fee should be less. If you spend more, your early termination fee should be more.

Okay, while I agree that entirely arbitrary termination fees should be done away with, this does not explain why AT&T decided that it should cost an extra hundred-and-fifty-fucking dollars.

So. Since they won’t explain it, I will.

It’s quite simple. For some time now, it’s been rumored that Verizon, AT&T’s biggest competitor, is working on an iPhone deal with Apple. It’s a rumor that hasn’t been squashed (which is a de facto confirmation in my eyes) and if it’s true, it means that AT&T’s about to lose the lucrative exclusivity they’ve enjoyed for three years now.

On top of that, it’s common knowledge that Verizon’s 3G coverage is a hell of a lot more reliable than AT&T’s. Also, people just like Verizon more, generally speaking. (I’m too lazy to go dig up info on actual market shares.) So, if and when Verizon lands this deal, I guarantee you that there will be a) a lot of new iPhone users, and b) a lot of people jumping ship.

Starting to see where I’m going with this?

If not, here it is: I think AT&T is raising the ETF on their smartphones because Verizon is very close to landing the aforementioned deal with Apple, and they’re afraid of people terminating contracts and jumping ship. So, they’re very aggressively discouraging it.

Good things do come to those who wait, I suppose. And ridiculous termination fees come to those who don’t. Remember that.

Killzone 3 is coming… in 3D, no lesswe knew Killzone 3 was coming, just not when. And…well, I guess we still don’t know when. But, we know for sure that it’s coming, because the latest issue of GamePro says so. Subscribers already have the issue in their grubby little hands, and it’s packed with details on the game. Now, I don’t know or care much about Killzone, but the juiciest details seem to be:

-The game will be playable in 3D

-The game will have jetpacks. Awesome jetpacks, too, not the lame jetpacks you see in “other games.”

-The game will… be like Inglourious Basterds? What?

Anyway. Hit the link above for a long, easy-to-read list concerning the game’s new features, courtesy of VG247. And while you’re at it, maybe check out this other VG247 for an additional fun fact:¬†apparently Guerilla Games has been working with Naughty Dog, the creators of Uncharted, to build Killzone 3’s graphics engine. Given the fact that Uncharted 2 is far and away the best-looking console game ever made, that can only be a good thing.

Well, I’m dangerously close to my 1000 word limit, so I guess we’d better wrap this up.

Actually, I don’t have a 1000 word limit. I just wanna wrap this up.

-Riddles

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5 Responses to “Lazy Saturdays #05 – Not So Lazy”

  1. SiliconNooB says:

    -Pfffft 3D …

    -Is it legal to up the cancellation fee when consumers have already signed a contract? That sounds illegal.

    -I don’t think there’s anything inconsistent about Lazlo’s position, you’re just wrong. And what about Hot Coffee? There was never a legitimate way to access that content, you needed to hack the game. It was non-used content which they hadn’t removed from the disc, like all the extra content that you can get from hacking KOTOR II.

  2. SiliconNooB says:

    Sounds like they’re looking at improving the story and culture of KZ3’s gameworld, which frankly the series needs as the characters were drab and the story throw-away, leaving you little reason for doing whatever the game asks of you.

  3. SiliconNooB says:

    Have you seen Ubi’s plan to lock game content to second-hand sales? They can get fucked! http://kotaku.com/5542204/the-week-in-review-the-10-solution

  4. evilpaul says:

    AT&T has a reputation for bad 3G service probably because their service is so popular in many major cities with everyone playing w/ their iPhones. Personally, I’d suggest people buying smartphones to do some research and probably buy an unlocked phone that works with their carrier of choice. You’ll spend $600 instead of $150, but apparently you don’t get screwed with a crazy long contract and ridiculous “termination fees.”

    DLC, used games….ugh.

    PC games have been pretty widely pirated the entirety of PC game history. Console game have (barring current gen handhelds) been much less so. This is mostly due to consoles having harder to crack copy protection mechanisms and being closed platforms. They’ve also mostly been including CD keys to install them for, well, practically forever. You usually can’t sell them used. Consequently, you can’t really buy them used much.

    With current gen consoles having HDD install requirements pretty often I don’t see why they can’t just stick CD keys on them and let you install and play them w/o the fucking disc. Online play, which is what most people I know who play games are all about, would only be possible w/ a legit key. Modern Warfare 2 didn’t sell a bajillion copies because of its 6 hour campaign.

    DLC could be pretty awesome, but is just being used to nickel and dime (is it really the right term when talking about 3x $15 purchases on top of $60?) gamers. Unlock codes for shit that’s on the disc you paid $60 for are bullshit. It’s gotten about as stupid as declaring your game as the first part of an “epic trilogy.”

  5. Ethos says:

    In North America, you ass?
    Rogers and Bell provide iPhone service in Canada, which is part of North America.

    Ass.

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