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e-wrecked's blog

12:27 PM on 03.01.2010

Calling out EA, THQ and UBISOFT

I'm one of those people who got kicked in the balls by the PSN corrupting this weekend (on 2/28/10)
One thing I have learned, I will not trust either THQ or EA again, and it was brought to my attention through Sony either fucking something up or (but if it was they'd probably never admit it) someone slipped a virus through their system.
First things first, it's true. PSN won't sign in and the two PS3's here are not slims. Also, the clock reset everything (including saves that I thankfully, being a gamer, was smart enough to have all the saves that allow you to backed up on a portable hard drive). Yeah, so the saves on the PS3 all said I last played on 12/31/1999 which made me feel pretty Marty McFly.
It also corrupted some downloadable extras like some Batman maps (the extras you DL) and trophies have actually vanished entirely off my dash (but for me that's more a blessing than a curse, achievements and trophies are just Pavlov dog bullshit I don't need and would be cool with staying gone).
Really weird is that half my themes all became corrupted.
Not a huge deal, everything can be re-DLed with the extra levels and themes...except for the fact it's now 11:30 AM on Monday and PSN still has an error. Nothing is fixed.

Because of this (I'm going to call it a) virus, I learned that Saints Row 2, my save is no good without the extra DL content on my drive. They made the content in a way it became a part of the game world, they didn't make the save able to read without it. Which, had there even at the very least been a warning beforehand, I could have saved an old save to a hard drive on the remote chance of things like what is happening this weekend happening.
So in effect, you ever remove the bonus purchased DL missions of Saints Row 2 from your drive and internet is out, your save is useless and if you play it it'll have to be a new game.
You really have to feel bad for those who had internet back when they got the game and fell on hard times and could no longer afford broadband years later.
That's extremely shoddy treatment to the consumer making them dependent to keeping that DL on the drive if they ever plan to play the game again. You know, some of us do go back to playing a game they like after some time passes from when they first finished it.

Staying on the THQ published PS3 versions, Darksiders is unable to be played without PSN. I mean, we're not even talking online itself, because games can still download their updates, so broadband itself is connected, but PSN is messed up.
It tells you it's unable to register trophies, so you can't play and boots to the dashboard.
Which it should be pointed out I have a pretty large size library of PS3 games both 1st AND 3rd party, and none of them have this problem. THQ or the developer managed to put together a trophy system not on the disc (like 360 does), but in a way that if you are at a point without a PSN hook up you can not play your single player only offline game.
Darksiders trophy set up on PS3 is a complete spitting on of gamers that you don't even realize happened until the internet is out. And not spitting on all gamers, but the gamers who actually bought their game.
If you have any self-respect or sense of worth towards how these companies handle your purchased products or regard you, I'd urge anyone and everyone to hit up THQ with emails telling them to not lay out their games in such a method reliant to online in games that have no need of it or threaten to not buy their games.
Just rent, if you absolutely must play it. But give the renter the money, not THQ. Money is the only way a corporation will hear.

And EA did the same thing with trophies in Dante's Inferno. As long as their is no PSN EVERY TIME, (not the first time you play, but every time) it will be unable to load trophies (according to their screen) and not allow you to continue on your bought game on a disc that doesn't have online play (yet, since the DL stuff is coming which I sure as hell won't be buying now).
So take what I said to do with THQ, wash, rinse and repeat.

I doubt Sony is to blame on these games needing the PSN or being unplayable, only because no other games, including all the 1st parties, did this. An educated guess would be these two publishers simply don't know what they're doing and are too cheap to pay qualified engineers.
EA has already demonstrated fumbling in the recent past when not only do you have to belong to EA online to do some things, like the demo on Army Of Two back in January which actually kept giving an error over ten times in a row before working to simply signing me in to their servers that I already belonged to because of some past EA game, for the honor of playing their downloaded demo on my 360, but also on the 360 the Bioware servers used in EA's published game for Dragon's Age (which I play the 360 version) crashes or freezes because they needed to use servers to spy on how far along you are.
I could care less if they feel the need to watch me game, since it is just a game, but I do care when the system put in is causing my console to crash.

How do I know it's them? Because every time I play, I need to disconnect LIVE. When offline (strangely the opposite problem of PS3) the game runs fine, never stalls or freezes.
And it's not my console. Because only two games have freezing problems that I can think of that I played (And on 360 I also have a pretty large library) are Dragon's Age and Assassins Creed 2, and both in the same way.
Ubisoft's own spying servers over at AC2 cause that game to crash under exactly the same set up.
So anytime I played either of those two titles I need to go to the hassle to remember to disconnect the network in the settings and turn it back on when done playing.
Some might say that's a minor hassle. I say it's about more than what I need to do, but the fact I shouldn't need to do it.
I bought both their games on day one. I bought their products at 60 dollars each and all I ask is these corporations don't put in items that have nothing to do with play features and cause me the headache because they looked for ways to increase their marketing research.

Maybe no one will read this, there being so many words and all, but even if no other consumer does anything, any of you developers or publishers involved in the titles I spoke of, know this:
I am your dream target consumer. I buy dozens and dozens of titles on both PS3 and 360 (pretty equally spread) a year. I buy new and often on day one and don't rent. I'm your wet dream of how you wish all gamers could be as far as you making money.
But you mess with me, I remember and learn.
Shit, I actually wrote it down and keep a list of who did what. I'd rather be anal then get fucked. Wait....that came out wrong.

Okay, I must focus instead of thinking of anal now.

In all seriousness, these companies have already ensured they lost a day one paying customer to products they are involved with. I will rent their games and check if they continued to use this structure, and if so then sure, I'll play a rented copy that yields them no money, but I will not buy even at a later date.
All I truly wish from typing all this is for the average gamer, the one who isn't getting freebies for working at game sites, but the one's who have to go into stores and lay out their hard earned and increasingly scarce dollars, you are who I hope reads this and saves yourself from being burned and (dare to dream) hope that some day these corporations will realize they can't do anything they feel like and we'll just happily give them our money grateful for whatever they do throw our way.
You deserve better than that from products that cost so much. This might not be as important as war or starving people, but wrong is wrong and you should want to stand up against those treating you bad on any level, even with your entertainment.   read

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