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LONG BLOG

Why Activision might be the most evil company in the market.

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So EA might get the credit for being the digital Devil incarnate but then again again to quote a line from the Constantine Film
"The sins of the father can only be surpassed by the sins of the son"

Now Activision has always played the "We are the ethical nice" company card they aren't and while EA might be making some very stupid decisions such as making pay to win games, security holes letting hackers into other peoples XBL accounts via EA accounts (Don't ask) and of course pumping out DLC and trying to get people to pay for the most insane stuff its Activision who are leading the way in screwing over people. Its Activision who have for a while lead the way.

So lets take a walk down the past and see why Activision manages to trump EA for the title of most evil company.

Milk it Dry guys
Who other than Activision could have such a brutal record of releasing sequel after so often.
Tony Hawk and guitar hero to mention a few and now with yearly COD releases. Now no doubt someone will say "But its a company their goal is to make money" True but considering they are using a game engine that's as old as the original source engine its them doing the bare minimum to release the game.
A game which here in the UK is now up to an RRP of £55 ($80 ish) considering the game hasn't had an engine overhaul the money is being spent of basically explosions.
Yet Activision claim "the game costs so much to make we have to charge this price"
Yes Activision you have to set the RRP as £55 despite making that nice $1 billion profit off MW3 alone.



The Lies

Ok this links into the previous point in Activision saying they have to charge for things to cover costs.
With COD 4 we had "Oh we have to charge 1200 MSP due to the cost of making the map packs and the game"
"We're making COD Elite for the Fans"
Yes the fans who were asked a cool £35 extra for elite.

deliberately abusing their fans

Ok now EA did this with Mass Effect 3 Day 1 DLC yet Activision have managed to make it an art form already what with the yearly big expansion packs for its game but recently the so called true fans.
Imagine if you will if the Mass effect 3 day 1 DLC had crippled the game, the story featured an un avoidable part where the whole crew was brutally killed off. that's the level Activision have managed by, so soon after the 2nd DLC the first two going on the xbox deals of the week for half price meaning even if people pay full price for for the next two map packs it will still work out cheaper in terms of microsoft points.




I really think those people trying to play MW2 and sitting going "oh Activision will fix this game soon enough they can't possibly leave it full of hackers" really must be the most optimistic people in the world, if only we could harness that somehow.

Trying to Sabotage others.

Here's one for you did you hear the one about where Activision tried to Sue Valve for $1 million ?
You haven't well they did.
Now stick with me as this gets weird and business talky.
This actually relates to an old case of Vivendi vs Valve due to Vivendi using Sierra to distribute version of Half-life to internet cafes for which valve had given no permission for its software to be used in a pay to play distribution system being used.
Valve got damages of $2,391,932 to be payed over the years to them from Vivendi

Activision then Acquired Vivendi.

Activision claimed they would uphold the previous court ruling and pay the remainder.
They didn't so Valve sued.
However Activision then filed to sue Valve for $1 million claiming they had not only payed it but payed $1million more than was due. This was thrown out of the court when it was discovered Activision had in reality only payed $1,967,796 of the due damages



Ok so you didn't hadn't heard the one about Activision suing Valve have you heard the one about them trying to sue Double Fine because this is a great one. Activision cancelled their game.
Yes you read that right Activision canned a game then tried to sue the developers when they took it else where.
All over a certain game.



So surely Hacktivision weren't being petty right ?
Well Wrong.
According to Tim Schafer they didn't know Brutal Legend was cancelled until Activision left it off the list of upcoming games it was publishing.
Activision stated they believed they were still in talks with Double Fine when Double fine made a deal with EA to publisher Brutal Legend (where Double fine Kept the IP rights). Activision claimed it had invested $15 million already in it and wanted it back.
no one knows the details but it was settled out of court.

Notice that Valve went to EA to publish and so did Double Fine proving they are the lesser evil really if companies are far more willing to work with EA, the deals even seeing Double fine and Valve keeping the IP rights.

OK so you might call that small fry. but here's a nice little quote that really shows Activision trying its best to undermine other companies.
"They're showing the game running on PC, what's wrong aren't they confident about running it on consoles"
That was about BF 3 yet the moment EA hit back saying how they were going to take down COD Activision seemingly took the approach of a wounded animal and cried about how to paraphrase here "The Big Nasty EA were being mean to us"



The Crazy Ideas

Now while Valve have crazy ideas like giving people the community like free stuff in DOTA 2 while punishing those who are total gits Activision has some very crazy ideas of its own most of which have snuck out in interviews.
"Consumers get so much value from COD multiplayer, its harming us and we should find a way to charge them for the time beyond a certain point they play multiplayer"
No really there was and maybe still is a plan to charge people for COD time, a way to charge people like a time based subscription fee to play COD online beyond a certain number of matches. That's right getting people to pay to use P2P systems for gaming, what idiot would do that ?


yes they really did try a games for windows live subscription. Hence why steam is held in such high regard to stepping up against them.

This added to Activision pressuring Ms for a share of the XBL subscription fee claiming "the only reason people play on 360 so much is COD"

Also lets not forget their PC gaming contributions as of late with P2P only play and no dedicated servers. Only to add dedicated servers to the next game that weren't for ranked play. Oh yeh and that nice incident of sueing people who managed to make a way for people to play on servers on MW2 because "They didn't implement a system to prevent fake versions of the game being used to play online" something that oddly people found Activision themselves hadn't done due to the game being P2P not server based entirely.


So while EA might be the considered the most evil company about for taking its own development teams out quietly behind the old shed and putting a metaphorical bullet into them before they can make the likes of Dungeon Keeper 3. At least they aren't Activision who milk them till they drop then try to avoid paying them like with Respawn and even try to sue them for daring to leave.

I put it to you the reader that Activision is actually the most evil company in gaming and its only due to a better spin team than EA that people haven't really noticed yet.

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About Dwarvenhobbleone of us since 8:33 AM on 06.19.2012

A qualified Environmental Chemist who happens to live in a fairly dense city with no real environment or chemistry industry.

I review indie games on another blog and you'll see them pop up here if I think the review is a good or interesting one (along with a shameless bit of self promotion)

I also operate another blog reviewing films and I mean t pick that back up when I can.

I've been gaming since the SNES days. I've been in the pro scene before for tribes 2 but hate the present pro scenes and have no interest in going back into it.

I tend to get into quite a few Betas and love ones without NDA as it means I can write about them. I have even beta tested an xbox 360 game in my time (and no not a normal public Beta one )

In gaming I'm normally the guy looking at the shelf below the AAA titles first to see if there are any great hidden gems.

My gaming drug of choice: Timesplitters in any flavour (Why won't you make Timesplitters 4 Crytek, why ????? I need my fix of insanity )
Xbox LIVE:hobblejp
Steam ID:dwavenhobble


 

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