Game Ranter Banter: Poor Business Practices, March's Bad Releases, OMGPOP
This week's been yet another interesting one for gamers. Once again the Mass Effect 3 ending controversy continues, as BioWare announced new (and free!) DLC to "fix" the ending and adds to the game's multiplayer. And their parent company EA's been through a lot as well, having been branded the worst company in America, while fighting off a bombardment of anti-gay letters. It can be pretty hectic, but at the end of the week there's one source of clarity: the Game Ranter Banter.
This week our writers discuss Mass Effect 3's new ending, anti-consumer practices businesses seem to love, the OMGPOP scenario, crossovers we'd like to see in the vein of MariO and the strange lack of quality in March's video game releases. Let's begin.
Online Fail (By Rob Keyes)
When it comes to news regarding online passes, most of the feedback from Game Rant readers is understandably negative. Players can buy a used game (or even new, a year after release) and EA can simply shut down servers a month later. So, what happens when you purchase games three years old? Does that online pass to unlock the full game's content remain $10? Should single-player games require an online pass (like Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning)? Should all developers take parts of the game's story out and charge by problematic piece (see: Batman: Arkham City)?
It's a sticky situation, much like the on-disc DLC Capcom loves implementing as a money-grab. The precedent is being set and now, publishers and developers have increased incentive to remove/block features and charge for them separately.
Fortunately, players are learning and seeing that many of the games re-release in "full" later. Just look at Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3. After that and the Street Fighter X Tekken debacle, the fanbase knows that they're being punished as early adopters... and that's backwards.
March Madness (By Dwayne Holder)
The month of March was a pretty awful one for gaming. We saw multiple high profile games release to dismal reviews, and we're not even including Mass Effect 3 user Metacritic score. Some of these titles include Blades of Time, Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City and Ninja Gaiden 3 -- a game that had awesome incarnations before it.
These are all games from developers who have made good games in the past. It makes me wonder if the developers were under a lot of pressure to get these out rushed — something that is very possible. Why is it that all these poorly made games released at the same time? It's enough to make a gamer depressed.
Were these titles rushed for some quick money before the next generation of consoles release? I'm fearful that this may be a continuing trend in the industry, and with rumors of the PS4 (aka the Orbis) not playing used games, I fear that we as gamers will be stuck with bad purchases in the next generation.
Crossing Over (By Tyler Schirado)
The fellas at StabYourself teased a new online 6-person multiplayer feature for their Super Mario Bros. meets Portal crossover game, MariO. Chaotic and cutthroat, this got me thinking of other cool crossovers that would only come in dreams. Like Super Smash Bros. or the potential new Sony Smash Bros. Clone, crossovers have the potential to be full of win and absolutely fun. Why not cross a super big action franchise with a puzzle game or a sports game into an RPG. The possibilities are endless.
In my mind, one of the ideas that I thought would be awesome would be a Mega Man RPG. I know there was some lame online version from ages ago, but a true console version of this game would be pretty cool. There's tons of potential and I think it could earn the respect of gamers who are fans of the Mega Man series while capturing the attention of RPG fanatics.
Ranters, what crossovers could you see potential in?
Pop Goes the Porter (By Jacob Siegal)
OMGPOP's Draw Something is the latest iOS success story. It continues to break records and steal hearts with its simplicity and ease of use. In fact, it became such a smash hit that casual gaming powerhouse Zynga decided to drop a few hundred million dollars in order to acquire Draw Something creator OMGPOP.
One employee decided to move on instead of joining the Zynga ranks. A developer himself, his views just didn't mesh with Zynga's, so he tipped his hat and walked out. That should have been the end of that story, but then OMGPOP CEO Dan Porter took to Twitter to attack the employee, referring to him as weak and selfish.
This immature behavior was not only entirely unwarranted - it has only been a few months since the Paul Christoforo outburst. It is sometimes hard to tell if these are genuinely hateful people, or if they are just clamoring for publicity. Either way, it needs to be looked down upon, and it needs to stop.
Mission Accomplished (By Anthony Taormina)
After weeks of petitions, cupcakes, and charity donations, BioWare finally announced story DLC for Mass Effect 3 that would add to the game's ending(s). It was only a matter of time before some type of announcement was made, but I, for one, was hoping that this DLC, while free, would never come.
Though Mass Effect 3 might feature a disappointing conclusion, BioWare altering it post-backlash compromises their vision for the entire series. They had a clear-cut idea of where they wanted to take things, and that's what fans got whether they liked it or not.
To change the ending in any way shape or form, even if it doesn't include additional gameplay, undermines the artistic vision of BioWare. There's a difference between being dissatisfied with the content and being dissatisfied with the quality, and Mass Effect fans clearly don't understand what they are and are not entitled to.
That's all for this week's Game Ranter Banter.
As always, let us know what you think of this week's news in the comments, or on Twitter @GameRant and Facebook.com/GameRant and if you have specific topics you'd like any of the team to cover, don't hesitate to ask.