My Game Publisher Choices

Activision is hell, EA is purgatory, and Valve is Heaven. That is how I currently rank my preference of game publishers and below is my reason.

I love Valve because they reward people who mod their games, instead of suing or harassing them. They provide tools for modding and when they like your idea, they buy your game or give you a job or something. They don’t ask you to stop what you’re doing because they’ll be releasing something similar in the future (e.g. World of Starcraft). After a few years, they lower the cost of their game significantly. Would you believe, Call of Duty 1, 2, and United Offensive (an expansion for the CoD) still costs $20?

Another factor is that Valve focuses on PC games. Me, having only my PC for gaming love the attention that the company is giving for the PC.

Now, as for Electronic Arts, a lot of you might be surprised that someone actually liked EA over Activision by several notch. Usually, people who hates one of them, also hates the other one by a notch or two. Well, I would feel that way too if not for this two reason, one of which may not apply to some readers.

First reason is that they are now less strict with their DRM, compared to Activision, at least to the games that I actually care for. Battlefield Bad Company 2 only requires a serial number. Medal of Honor uses serial and EA account creation. Same with Dragon Age: Origins Ultimate Edition. I haven’t encountered an “Always Online” requirement on the games that I like.

Second reason, and perhaps more important is that in the Philippines, EA games that sells for $60 in the US, is sold at $30 only. I bought the Medal of Honor: Tier One Edition for roughly the equivalent of $30 in our local currency. This is how EA is fighting piracy in our country, make the games affordable, and not implement restrictive DRM.

There are still things that I hate about EA though. There’s the feeling that they released an incomplete game because they hope that you will buy the DLCs and expansions. There’s Medal of Honor whose single player was probably QA’ed by blind people. But those are forgivable issues.

So why do I hate Activision? Well, to put it simply, they fucked up all my old favorites. It started with Modern Warfare II where they claimed that it wasn’t a direct port from the console and yet can only name mouse and keyboard controls as the main difference between the two versions. There’s the no LAN feature of Starcraft II which I vowed never to play (even with a pirated copy) until they implement an official patch that allows LAN games. There’s the screwjob they made on old Infinity Ward people (though admittedly, EA might have done this with their acquisitions).

This brings me to my problem. Should I buy Diablo III?

Diablo I is the first modern game that I have played and enjoyed. I give more importance to its sequels than I would have given to any other Blizzard game. While I was easily turned off by Blizzard’s(?) move of removing the LAN feature in buying Starcraft II, I promise to give a bit more leeway with the screw-ups Activision is planning on Diablo III. I promised that I would weigh the good things, over the stupid things that they will feature.

Then they announced this two features. One is the auction house where player’s can buy items with real money. Okay, great! That’s one thing that I’m definitely going to hate since I live in a third world country where my salary won’t be able to match the salary of minimum wage earners in first world countries.

While I do not like this feature, it mostly affects multiplayer, something which I do not care as much as single-player. So at this point I am still okay with the game.

And then they announced that they will implement an always online requirement, even for single player! Yes, you have to be online even if you want to play alone.

Their reason? To prevent cheating in multi-player but I suspect it has more to do with fighting piracy.

And the people who used to bash Ubisoft’s always online feature in Assassin’s Creed 2? They’re okay with it. Just because it was implemented by “perfect” Blizzard, the detested “always online” feature is now okay.

Even with this, I am still set on buying the game though I’m getting less and less excited by its release. Hopefully, there will be no more stupid ‘feature’ added by Activision.


About Squared
House of Squared is written by that guy who knows more than the average Duterte supporter, which isn't saying much given that most of them are morons.

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