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An Open Letter to Game Developers:

I have become increasingly aware of the lack of local multiplayer in games. It's becoming more and more rare, and it has come to the point where even when it is included it's severely limited or poorly implemented, becoming especially evident in shooters. It's not like this is a new idea, this has been around forever. I'm certain you know what you are doing, and you are simply choosing not to do it, and this is the source of my complaint. Maybe I'm wrong, as this is an open letter I shall leave it to the DToid community to weigh in and inform me how amazingly insightful or woefully incorrect I am.

Let me first say this: I get it. It's good business to have everyone who's going to play a game buy a copy, it means that every game that is played earns you a profit. This is obvious and desirable, though it seems to me a rather limited view. I propose instead that the free advertising gained from some first hand experience with a title and an endorsement of the game from one or more of your friends will more than likely help to boost sales, and if every person that owns it shares it with a friend then you may have a better time if selling copies. However, I am not a statistician or market analyst, and as such will freely admit that I may be sorely mistaken on the topic. I understand the basic rationale behind such a move, I just don't see how the benefits outweigh the losses of such a plan.

Back to the point: Many recent hits have not had any form of multiplayer, but some of these cannot be counted because they were single player games: There was no place in the story of the game for a second player. That's fine. Some have had multiplayer, with split-screen local. Occasionally time this is limited to two players. It's called Left 4 Dead, the number of players is in the title, why cut us off at two? Occasionally this is poorly implemented. I don't know how many people were able to play Fable 2 with a henchman after it was discovered you were required to share a screen. I know I had a hard time of it. Sometimes it will even be omitted entirely. Examples of this include Bioshock 2 and, amazingly to me, the recent Transformers game. The campaign is meant to be played by three people. I live with eight. Surely I shouldn't need to invest upwards of five hundred dollars to play a game with two of these people? Multiplayer has been around almost as long as games have, excising it now seems like a desperate grasp at a fistful of dollars.

That was the long form. The short form uses a number of words I'd rather not; as a wise man once said: "Profanity is the crutch of the inarticulate bastard."
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About Undeedone of us since 5:47 PM on 08.31.2009

I am a people, I am a college student, I am a gamer. I am also rather new at this blogging bit, and decided that Monthly Musings seemed like a not bad way to acclimate to writing things that people will read. I'll add more as it's relevant.
Xbox LIVE:Undeed
PSN ID:Senzig


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