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Giant Bombcast Game of the Year 2017: PLEASE STOP

Whoa whoa whoa man! Red Light! PLEASE. STOP.

The Giant Bombcast is the world's most beloved video game podcast, and now it's available in video form.

Dec. 27 2017

Cast: Jeff, Brad, Vinny, Alex, Ben, Dan, Jason, Abby

Posted by: Jan

Episode Notes:

We had 5 days of deliberations! That's a lot of podcasting! So we broke each day into 4 parts.

This video is Day 3, part 2 (of 4)

Want to see the rest? LINKS!

Best World

Best Wolfenstein II Moment or Sequence

Best Moment or Sequence

69 Comments

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abczyx

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Uh oh...

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Oscar Wojciechowski-Prill

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merry xmas

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hassun

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Edited By hassun

Will EA, the big winner of these awards so far, manage to do it again!?

Danny O'Dwyer made me realise something very important a while back:

Loot boxes have never made any game better for the player.

Search your feelings, you know it to be true.

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Rocketskates

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Edited By Rocketskates

The part they forget with Overwatch is all the regular new content and updates you're not paying for.

I don't even buy loot-boxes and I do sometimes feel guilty that I have over 600 hours play time (not to mention all the time I spend socialising in OW spaces) and all they have from me is $30. The system isn't perfect (duplicates could give you more,) but in terms of a game as a service with blind boxes, it's proof that it can be done correctly.

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bluntmcgee

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@rocketskates: Just to add: Overwatch does not give you duplicates in lootboxes anymore.

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Shiftygism

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Edited By Shiftygism

Here's a hot take for a "PLEASE STOP" entry...

How about Alex and Dan please stop labeling the core gameplay efforts of the 2K WWE games as being "bad" and that they "play like shit/fucking suck" when it's clear they just don't enjoy the simulation approach taken with them and want something more arcadey in nature.

They wouldn't shit on Madden because it's not Blitz, there's no excuse to do it in this situation.

I'll be the first to admit WWE games haven't had a decent overall package since 2K16, but the reason the series has remained popular is because of its amazing creation suite and the most realistic core wrestling gameplay ever seen which offers really awesome back and forth matches with all of the reversal and transitional animations added to the mix over the last few installments. Something neither Alex or Dan (or Jeff for that matter) are looking for....which is fine, but it doesn't mean it's "bad", or 2K/Yukes should "stop making them."

They definitely need a year off to iron out the kinks and rethink some of not so appealing elements of the series, but like they said....the WWE just won't allow it.

Comparing it to Fire Pro, is down right silly though. I fucking LOVE that series, but it's a completely different animal and with its own strengths and weaknesses.

Also...

- While the daily download limit on user uploaded content is lame, this year's Community Creations finally works like a dream with the changes made and the search function has been improved greatly.

- 2K had little input on 2K14, they just slapped their name on the work THQ had done that year.

- They cut the story creation mode as it was more trouble than it was worth online speaking, rarely produced anything worth playing, or that the WWE would approve of in the Women's Revolution era of the company.

- Regarding Abby's mention of cleavage being uploaded to the image gallery. Stuff like that is used to create custom attires by layering the appropriate pics. I can't vouch for that foot fetish stuff though.

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Rocketskates

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They figured out that you should at least have all the common unlocks before you start seeing repeats... but once you do, you still get plenty of duplicates. Since I have all the common items, my boxes tend to be a 30 currency drop. It's kind of a bummer, but since I play more during events I rarely notice it.

@rocketskates: Just to add: Overwatch does not give you duplicates in lootboxes anymore.

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bluntmcgee

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@rocketskates: Ah, interesting haven't noticed that. I just get a lot of player icons now.

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Gyoru

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20:18 sleepy brad

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KaoEclipse

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I think the idea of Games as a Service is best portrayed with Rainbow 6: Siege and For Honor. They are going to continuously add more content to that game, and you don't have to pay for it. It is something that keeps the game relevant as years pass. This is not loot boxes.

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NameRedacted

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Edited By NameRedacted

EA's market cap is still around $33 billion USD. It's trading pretty steadily for the past month around $105 USD (up from $81 USD this same time last year), so...

EA is a hogshit lagoon on fire, but they're doing just fine. It's still business as usual at EA, nothing will change.

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OHNOgc

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I'm glad blindboxes won this category, but I'm also glad WWE games made this list. Feels like it needed to be there a long time ago, and it finally made it. Too many years of the same stale crap and frequent regressions.

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flasaltine

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PLEASE STOP: Robbing Doom

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elite49

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I'm with Jeff that blindboxes even in Overwatch suck. I loved playing OW but the constant updates to that game and constantly getting items for characters I never once even chose made me just stop playing it altogether. I had every item for one character that I never spent a second with while the character I played the most had roughly 10 things unlocked. (This was all during the first few months)

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tr0n

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Edited By tr0n

Jim Sterling did a good video about the "it's just cosmetics" argument.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ce5CDrq4dGg

His point is that cosmetic stuff is actually part of the gameplay in a way and it's not just cosmetic as such. People care about it a lot, and that's why publishers and developers sell it as they do.

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Dr_Insane

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Edited By Dr_Insane

Well done crew, good list. Blind loot boxes are a predatory cancer even for just cosmetics. A system designed to frequently screw vulnerable people over in hopes of making them double down on their loss and spend more than they ever wanted to finally achieve the relief of getting what they originally wanted. If you're going to add cosmetic micro transactions to your game, let us at least buy or earn (at a decent rate) the skins we want directly, fin.

And FYI to any lootbox apologists, go look at financials over the years. These companies were still making record profits 2+ years ago before blind lootboxes took off, there's no excuse. Even FF15, a mediocre AAA game in dev hell for like a decade, that must have tallied up a ridiculous bill by it's release and should be a poster child for "AAA games are expensive to make", was already profitable day one from pre order and day 1 sales of the game alone, no blind lootboxes needed. https://www.technobuffalo.com/2017/02/07/final-fantasy-xv-became-profitable-after-a-single-day-on-the-market/

Games sell way more copies than they used to decades ago and have additional monetization from collectors/enhanced additions, expansions, season passes, non predatory DLC, merch/promotion deals etc. Those were fine. Profits have way outpaced increased dev costs without blind lootboxes for many years. So the excuse that "games are expensive to make so they need lootbox bullshit" is just a sad excuse and lie. That shit has been debunked. Most of the best and most successful games this year did not need blind lootboxes. Blind lootboxes have been nothing but pure greed and designing games to excite already rich shareholders rather than to excite gamers. Bobby Kotick's net worth is in the multi billions btw.

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Redhotchilimist

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Edited By Redhotchilimist

@tr0n said:

Jim Sterling did a good video about the "it's just cosmetics" argument.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ce5CDrq4dGg

His point is that cosmetic stuff is actually part of the gameplay in a way and it's not just cosmetic as such. People care about it a lot, and that's why publishers and developers sell it as they do.

He's absolutely right. Like yeah, you totally don't need any of that stuff. There's no benefit to it. But everyone wants stuff that looks cool. I'm not arguing that they shouldn't sell it, but they absolutely shouldn't sell random possibilities to maaaybe get what you want. Ben's argument about the company earning more money on it is a) Not my problem, and b) It's fucking Blizzard and EA and shit. They're the biggest companies around. They are not hurting for cash to do whatever they want. This isn't some poor indie dev wanting to scrounge up enough cash to keep on eating, it's greedy, extremely rich businessmen wanting to squeeze even more money out of their already super succesful games.

Edit: But also forced walking sections are super boring. It's like they don't want to do a cutscene, because they heard those were bad, but what they replace it with is just a cutscene with zero cinematography and no option to skip it.

Youtube delivers as always.

Loading Video...
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MeierTheRed

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I'm with Abby on the whole achievements/trophies thing on Switch i find it really nice there are no pop ups, and it's my one system where i have zero interactions with friends. Just feels nice.

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Grondoth

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Edited By Grondoth

Yes. Brad has turned on Dota.

Dota is the sickness that is at the heart of all this. Destroy it! Burn it! BURN IT!

The hand-wringing about "but games are too expensive to make" is... the lie is exposed. Look at all the profit the companies are making, it's not people trying to make up costs. It's greed. It's profit and rent seeking. They have no excuses, all is exposed.

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hassun

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Edited By hassun

Ben and Dan defending shitty blind/loot box practices:

No Caption Provided

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Jimbot

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I'm glad Jeff came around the cosmetic loot box shit. In the beginning I felt the same way as he did but when I kept reading twitter (and Jim Sterling brings this up a lot) about how these things exploit people with addictive personalities and how they feel like they need to buy these SUPER DUPER LIMITED TIME SKINS because the loot boxes aren't giving them any, it really pushed through to me that these things are all fucking trash.

I don't feel that need, but if someone does and they cave in to use real money to get that skin they really want then it's the antithesis of what games should be about. It's rotten. Growing up, I always enjoyed games and it was an escape and I felt good playing them. People who play games these days deserve to feel that way too, regardless of how the market is changing. Ben brings up a good point that all the new content is free, but there are better ways of doing it and ways that won't exploit actual problems people have.

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Chicken008

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Vinny wrong about the Switch parental controls. There's definitely a password system.

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LoktarOgar

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Hey yo, you can easily set it so that pressing the Share button on the Dual Shock 4 takes a screenshot. I don't know why it's not the default, but still, just sayin'.

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NameRedacted

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@hassun said:

Ben and Dan defending shitty blind/loot box practices:

No Caption Provided

No Joke. These are multi-billion dollar corporations beholden to millionaire / billionaire shareholders, not Indy devs trying to scrape together enough money for food, heat, and rent (to say nothing of healthcare or a savings). This is "players as payers" BS and the purest form of greed.

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SpaceBacon

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I realize I'm in the minority but I love what they did with the Switch a lot. There's no extra bullshit, just video games. The menus are very streamlined to the point of minimalism and they are FAST, even the eShop loads in like 3 seconds. The Wii U had so much garbage in the main menu along with background noise, store took forever to load, downloads took forever to start etc. Also the wi-fi was kinda shit, Switch wi-fi supports 5 GHz.

Friend codes are, for sure, a stupid thing to have but going "Ugh I can't be bothered to type in your code so I will NEVER add ANYONE seems like an overraction. Maybe it's just that I'm used to typing in some rather complex usernames in other services that can't really be remembered and need to be written down somewhere before adding. It feels more like the duders wouldn't use the Switch for multiplayer games (with friends) anyway so they can get away with ignoring friend codes.

That being said I think there are some very fair points here for someone who prefers something like Steam, personally I'm not looking for that on the Switch since I have it elsewhere. I don't even want voice chat in games, I just want to play a game and not have any intrusions in the menus and such. The only thing that really bothers me is that charging for online doesn't seem like a cool move if they are barebones.

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jonc151

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Alright I need to know if I'm going mental. Look at the white cables on the table and the white edge of the macbooks and tell me if they are jittering in the video.

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KgKris

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Edited By KgKris

KINGDOM HEARTACHE LOL

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Irishranger

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5:22

Oh, boy, here we go again...

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stordoff

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Edited By stordoff

@danryckert: It has the best screenshot tool in consoles

It's also exactly how I have my PS4 set up, except the Switch doesn't do PNGs (they are poorly/overly compressed JPGs) and doesn't do video.

@ybbaaabby: FWIW, there are third party adaptors for TV-out without needing the dock (e.g. the Coov SH350).

@meierthered said:

I'm with Abby on the whole achievements/trophies thing on Switch i find it really nice there are no pop ups

Is that any different to just having a "Don't show achievement notifications" toggle? I'm not sure that makes the lack of a feature a good thing.

@chicken008 said:

Vinny wrong about the Switch parental controls. There's definitely a password system.

AFAIK, the only way to password lock your account is to abuse the parental control options, and even then you can only do it through the app (which I can't use due to not having a Android/iOS device). It's a bad solution.

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Dagbiker

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I don't think Nintendo is trying to not solve problems. I think Nintendo is trying to do something unique with everything. They want to be able to point to the very unique way they solved the voice problem, or the parental controls.

But it just ends up with them trying to reinvent the wheal. and its never better then the original wheal.

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nfugitt

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2K/Yukes absolutely deserves a PLEASE STOP after nearly 20 years of middling to awful games. Imagine releasing 18 games and only 3 of them are any good, and now are getting progressively worse.

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Onemanarmyy

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I thought that me & Brad were likeminded individuals, but during all these 'what is this definition' talks i start to feel like only Jeff knows what's up. Lootboxes are a tool used in GaaS. It's not the same as GaaS. Giving pop ups to buy stuff isn't inherently the same as GaaS, You can keep the ads outside of the game and still be able to sell them.

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vhold

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Edited By vhold

Alex's impassioned monologue about wrestling games at 21 minutes 30 seconds is the impassioned GiantBomb monologue of the year.

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bloody_skirmish

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The part they forget with Overwatch is all the regular new content and updates you're not paying for.

I don't even buy loot-boxes and I do sometimes feel guilty that I have over 600 hours play time (not to mention all the time I spend socialising in OW spaces) and all they have from me is $30. The system isn't perfect (duplicates could give you more,) but in terms of a game as a service with blind boxes, it's proof that it can be done correctly.

Truth. And, @jeff ... If you could buy individual skins in Overwatch in a way that does not require people to play Overwatch a year and a half later, people would buy the sick skins, and shut the game off. This keeps people playing Overwatch.

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Onemanarmyy

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Edited By Onemanarmyy

Here's the thing about 70$ games. You really think devs would rather get 10$ more out of every customer instead of keeping lootboxes? I think the data out there tells you that lootboxes let's you extract waaaayyyy more money out of your users than 10$. Also, please remind Brad that you can just buy specific dota items via the steamstore.

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Shiftygism

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@nfugitt:

SD2, SYM, HCTP, SVR06, SVR07, WWE'13, 2K14, 2K16 were all good to great entries.

As was Wrestlemania XIX, and Day of Reckoning 1&2 also developed by Yukes.

The current core gameplay despite some slowdown and reversal issues is the best its ever been, if only they could build a decent game around it as both Universe and MySuperstar are seemingly lost causes.

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MerxWorx01

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Regarding Alex , Jeff and Vinny's take on EA's messaging regarding the shutting down of the the Visceral Product. It sounds fucking insane that they would rather have a nice neat PR friendly, boiler-plate statement about it being binned. The statement as I read it wasn't some kind of limp wrist attempt at point the blame at the markets or communities. It was a veiled and carefully worded attempt to let people know without out righting saying that the project was getting gutted because the higher ups were getting turgid for a piece of the microtransaction pie before they are fired, made to disappear and never be heard from again. It was a attempt to convey what's happening within the studio with out burning a million bridges. I absolutely think it's wrong of them to want something like that to be quietly brushed away because of how negative it sounds. In fact I would say that expanding upon it and wanting to know more is a better follow up to this versus wishing the messenger be more measured with his PR speak.

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vhold

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Edited By vhold
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DystopiaX

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@vhold said:

I think "Skinner Box" or "Operant conditioning chamber" should have been the name of one of these things, because that's the nasty thing going on.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operant_conditioning_chamber

Would have liked something in there about how lootboxes are also gross because they prey upon addictive personalities as well. I've heard stories on here and twitter and elsewhere that are from people who basically talked about how they spent hundreds of dollars a day because they were addicted, knew they were addicted, and were basically unable to stop until they had to force themselves to stop playing the game they were dumping so much money into. Hearing those stories was definitely the point where I swapped from "lootboxing gameplay elements is bad" to "all lootboxes are bad".

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Eribuster

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Good stuff. As a happy Nintendo Switch owner, it was righteous to hear them calling out Nintendo for being bad Nintendo. Sadly, I expect we'll see this repeat next year when the Nintendo Switch paid online service rolls out and is terrible.

Lastly, Loot Boxes are Bad Civilization.

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larmer

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Edited By larmer

I feel like they are so clueless on the WWE games. Dan has mentioned it in the past, but people really really like those games. They aren't just buying it because it's the WWE game. They really like Yuke's wrestling games. Wrestling games before Smackdown were really bad. I really don't understand this idea they have that Yuke's has always been terrible. Their formula and design may be getting worse as they change and remove features, but when Yuke's released the first Smackdown it was a wrestling game that dialed it in just right and it was a major hit. That is why Yuke's has been developing the mainline WWE game ever since. They struck the right balance when so many other developers have either failed or had middling success. Maybe the GB guys never liked the Yuke's games, but that is the history. They can talk all they want about WWF No Mercy being the last great WWE game but there's a reason Yuke's is still making the wrestling while the developer of No Mercy is now making this.

Nintendo presents: New Style Boutique 3 – Styling Star
Nintendo presents: New Style Boutique 3 – Styling Star

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larmer

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Edited By larmer

Lets get into the realism of the situation with game finances. Here it is: Sell the game at full price. This should be enough. If reports are accurate that the first Battlefront sold 14 million units those sales alone excluding DLC should be enough profit. I don't know how they can sell that many units and decide that the sequel needed lootboxes to replace season pass revenue. Just sell 14+ million copies again. Why is that not enough? The only conclusion I can come to is that they're greedy. There's no way that thing is so expensive to make that 14 million sales doesn't make it worthwhile.

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jedikv

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Edited By jedikv

@bloody_skirmish: @rocketskates:

Nah, Jeff is on point. As he mentioned in best old game. Respawn has also managed to add new content to Titanfall 2 without leveraging the insidious nature of blind boxes. All paid items are cosmetic and you just buy what you want with real money like any other product. There's no excuse for blizzard. It offers no benefits to the player (to paraphrase Danny O)

Blind boxes in general are pretty toxic in their actual purpose. There's a reason why Blizzard is willing to move heaven and earth to get around Chinese laws to disclose drop rates.

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matthewgm

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The first time the loot box / random unlocks concept ruined something for me was Lost Planet 2.

I could have endured a lot of the changes, but locking out a lot of the weapons that specifically counter different strategies behind a random drop was very frustrating.

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Shiftygism

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Edited By Shiftygism

@kingbonesaw

"Shitty" compared to what? The Smackdown legacy series is the only somewhat realistic option for wrestling fans, and no one in this day and age is going to be able to come in and make a dent on the progress (albeit slow progress) Yukes has made over the last two decades of development. Especially now under the 2K banner, as the last few years with them has improved the flow of the matches and core gameplay tremendously. Which is what I take issue with, the core gameplay aspect, not the games themselves as they've got a whole mess of problems outside of that and their always amazing creation suite.

Why the hell should they stop when the only things holding them back from perfection is developing better AI, scripted events that flow naturally in the match, and better pacing to represent the ever changing indy style they've been trying to incorporate into the mix for awhile now. It's fucking insulting to the large audience that enjoys and supports their efforts in those respects as we understand what they've been up against over the years because of the yearly release cycle imposed on them, and why wrestling games, more than any other genre, has been the slowest to evolve because of it. If Alex and Dan want something else, fine....but they should be honest about it and not use their platform to spew crap that just isn't true all because it's not the style of game they prefer.

Also, they continually fail to realize these are a more you put in, the more you're rewarded type of game. Wrestling is performance art, there has to be some form of awareness and willingness to put together a decent match flow, and if all you're experiencing is running around spamming the same moves and strikes treating it like a common fighter, then yeah...of course you're not gonna be aware of how deep the gameplay actually is and how closely it can recreate the televised product. Because when it's played how it was intended, that shit looks and feels incredible.

(from my forum post...)

None of them enjoy the slow methodical back and forth nature of the simulation focused gameplay, that's why they think it plays like shit, it doesn't fit their strict definition of what a wrestling game should be.

This is evident from the things they have said over the years and seeing Dan not having the patience to even attempt to engage the action as it's supposed to be stubbornly standing around spamming kicks in a proverbial head shaking act of defiance failing to realize the current system is most rewarding to those that actually play smart and don't treat them like some stupid button masher while Alex gives flat-out incorrect instructions of how a new method of play controls claiming it's "bad" when it's actually the most rewarding and layered wrestling system there's ever been and one of the few things Yukes/2K continues to get right with the series.

When Dan points out a completely optional grappling system added this year which allows more freedom in the ring is a step back over the last installment he enjoyed which suffered gameplay wise thanks to the arcade nature of its sped up strikes, it's clear he's not a fan of the genre. He wants an arcade wrestling game, and that's fine....but not acknowledging that and acting as if it's the game's fault for not being what he wants all while taking the tired black or white stance he does way too often is incredibly annoying and devalues his opinion from a critical standpoint.

As I said, you're not gonna bitch about Madden not being Blitz.

For Alex though, there's obviously a little more going on as he's using the opportunity to champion the little guy in Fire Pro World.....which should be, but not in this manner. It's gotta be exactly how they want it or it's dogcrap. There's no grey area at all, and that shit's lame.