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Old 05-29-2010, 02:44 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Now I'm a pretty big Blizzard fanboy, but...

This hurt a bit to read.
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Old 05-29-2010, 04:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I dont get it. Why is it bad?

The first games machine I had was a Sinclair +2 in about 1990, and I remember playing Activision games on that. Are they supposed to be bad guys or somnething?
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Old 05-29-2010, 04:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I'm not surprised, that's pretty much what I've known and been saying the last year or two (not so well of course.)

SF its 'bad' more because of the image blizz has projected onto their company. They used to be all about quality and customer service. They'd lose money to put out a better game. etc. Well a lot of people still think of them that way and haven't realized they've changed, and somewhat betrayed their trust by adopting a different business model.

I'm not explaining it real well, so I wouldn't pick this post as a point to disagree with if someone was so inclined. Maybe Joz can explain it better.

Last edited by Zeraph; 05-29-2010 at 04:51 PM..
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Old 05-29-2010, 04:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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SF: Nothing against Activision itself, just the business practices Blizzard has been following since the merger.

Blizzard always used to be this very friendly company to me; I still love their games, but I realize now that they've grown to the point where it really is just about the money to them. Look at all the ways they treated their employees, etc.

@Zeraph: Aye. Not so much betrayed my trust, as they have every right to do this. It has absolutely made me revise my image of them, though.
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Old 05-29-2010, 09:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Wow, I had no idea about any of this - I've kind of been out of the gaming loop since going back to grad school. This sucks. I used to love Blizzard because of its commitment to excellence - they produced new games at a glacial pace in order to ensure top notch quality. Not only was it admirable, but it proved highly successful for them. Too bad they're now run by a giant douchebag who gives speeches deriding his customer base as "guys who don't have a date on a Friday night" and wants to put in-game advertising into SC2. Fuck him, I hope he gets raped by a zergling.
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Old 05-29-2010, 11:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Honestly I've been compiling a list of signs "Gamer's Revelations" style for a while now, ever since Jack Thompson publically defended Mass Effect. I think this is just one in a long line of wierdness that started around the time the first xbox was released.
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Old 06-01-2010, 10:27 AM   #7 (permalink)
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can anyone tl;dr this for me?
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Old 06-01-2010, 10:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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No need to pick on Blizzard, the whole gaming industry has jumped on this money milking bandwagon, why else do you think they generate more revenue than movies?
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Old 06-01-2010, 10:31 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I think the most nutshell way of putting it is that people are criticizing Blizzard's customer service and value-added services for being monetized at the whim of its parent company, Activision.
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Old 06-02-2010, 10:47 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I think you could take any individual or company and cherry pick a selection of facts, accompany it with out of context quotations and make that entity look awful. I've been playing blizzard games for a long time, and all I can say is that no one is putting a better game product on the market right now. WoW is the undisputed king of MMOs for a reason and SC2 is amazing. Their merger with Activision may have led to a bit more money-mongering, but hey, they're a business. When pop up adds start showing up inside the WoW gameworld, I'll start worrying.
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Old 06-03-2010, 07:38 PM   #11 (permalink)
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That feels to me like a bit of a copout on looking at this. Sure, it's possible to make most anyone look bad - but that doesn't mean this list doesn't have a lot of very valid points.

Granted, a lot of his quotes were obviously not meant for public ears
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Old 06-03-2010, 07:52 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I see nothing wrong with them adding pay for services. A lot of the services are amazing features, really. I wish they were in the game when I played WoW.
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Old 06-10-2010, 06:28 AM   #13 (permalink)
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My fear, and I'm sure it's one shared by many, is the direction that Activision will ultimately push Blizzard via pressure to perform to shareholders. Will they turn Blizzard into another soulless title-churning machine with the ultimate result being their demise? That's a fear all of us have. Sure, they might exist as a company and still put out games, but they might not be the same quality or caliber that were the foundation that made Blizzard what it is today.

I fear the idea of trying to monetize so much of their business model. I won't say this is an Activision only thing either. Everyone wants a subscription business model. It provides far more revenue over time - look at WoW. With the added "bonus" features you can pay one-time fees for in WoW, they have the single largest video game revenue stream in the world on ONE TITLE. This isn't like selling 100 million copies of Guitar Hero worldwide or something. This means, they have a persistent revenue stream that has lasted over 6 years now - and it's only grown. If they can do this same thing with Starcraft 2, you know they will.

Now, they know the RTS market isn't ready for a subscription model yet. At least here in the states. However, I see them pushing down the path of creating a paid model for entering tournaments by locking them down to only being able to run on Battle.net. If you want to create a custom tournament, or league, I'm guessing they will offer those things in the future as "fee-based services" similar to how you can buy a character transfer on WoW.

I'm just worried about what this will do to their community over time. The biggest question though is : Will pressure from Activision cause them to ultimately betray all their fans and do something that kills them as a company? I really hope it never comes to that.
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Old 06-10-2010, 07:24 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I see nothing wrong with them adding pay for services. A lot of the services are amazing features, really. I wish they were in the game when I played WoW.
I remember when I was tired of looking at my character thinking, "I'd like to change my hairstyle, I'd pay $10 to do that."

A lot of these monetizations are not just thoughtless money grabs. Many of them are based on something that wasn't available when gaming was in it's infancy... the internet connection: blogs, forums, chats, and other direct feedback. They took information from the best players and consumers and listened to them. Are they still doing that? I'm not 100% sure, but I cannot today think of ANY single company that is shareholder driven that holds to their founding principles.
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Old 06-10-2010, 08:13 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I would say that most monetizations aren't likely to be money grabs. In this day and age of doing business, especially as far as digital content (i.e. gaming) is concerned, most marketers, designers, executives, etc., know that in order to charge money for something, you must give something of value.

Back in the day, when rpgs were barely online at all, if someone predicted that we'd happily pay $50 for a game and then a $15 monthly subscription fee to play it, in addition to another $50 here and there for "sequels" (expansions), just about everyone would have freaked out ("No fucking way!"). That is, unless you explained to them what that game entails. If back in 1990, if someone explained to you just what WoW is today and what's involved in playing it—every aspect of it—it would likely have blown your fucking mind—even with just the graphics, let alone the size of the world and how it operates: "Dude, it'll be like playing a cartoon!"

WoW is the perfect example because of its success, of course. And the business models coming down the pipeline are hypersensitive to the WoW model. Because it works. Really fucking well.

That said, future models will look at providing products, services, and experiences based on "what people are willing to pay for." It's not going to be a case of "So! How can we get these chumps to pay for what they're already getting for free?" Activision would have to be really, really stupid to go along that line.

Think about it: What are you actually getting for $15 every month? What does that pay for? What will that amount pay for in the future? It's not 100% profit.
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Last edited by Baraka_Guru; 06-10-2010 at 08:16 AM..
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Old 06-10-2010, 08:19 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Baraka_Guru View Post
I would say that most monetizations aren't likely to be money grabs. In this day and age of doing business, especially as far as digital content (i.e. gaming) is concerned, most marketers, designers, executives, etc., know that in order to charge money for something, you must give something of value.

Back in the day, when rpgs were barely online at all, if someone predicted that we'd happily pay $50 for a game and then a $15 monthly subscription fee to play it, in addition to another $50 here and there for "sequels" (expansions), just about everyone would have freaked out ("No fucking way!"). That is, unless you explained to them what that game entails. If back in 1990, if someone explained to you just what WoW is today and what's involved in playing it—every aspect of it—it would likely have blown your fucking mind—even with just the graphics, let alone the size of the world and how it operates: "Dude, it'll be like playing a cartoon!"

WoW is the perfect example because of its success, of course. And the business models coming down the pipeline are hypersensitive to the WoW model. Because it works. Really fucking well.

That said, future models will look at providing products, services, and experiences based on "what people are willing to pay for." It's not going to be a case of "So! How can we get these chumps to pay for what they're already getting for free?" Activision would have to be really, really stupid to go along that line.

Think about it: What are you actually getting for $15 every month? What does that pay for? What will that amount pay for in the future? It's not 100% profit.
Back that far in the day $15 was the cost of your dial up ISP and you were not going to pay $15 just for a game, not ONE game! Which is why AOL did so well back then too, they had LOTS of games.
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Old 06-10-2010, 09:51 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Activision has ruined the Guitar Hero and Call of Duty franchises, purely because they are chasing $$$. Sure, both are still doing well, but both are on the decline. I don't expect either to be around for that much longer. Blizzard, despite their devoted following, would do well to heed that example.
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Old 06-11-2010, 04:06 AM   #18 (permalink)
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What??? CoD is declining???? You've got to be kidding me.

I played COD:MW for the FIRST time when it came out. It was so amazing to me that I then purchased the rest of the games from the franchise. Whne COD:MW2 came out, I immediately purchased the game.

I'm a bargain gamer, I don't care if I get it when it comes out or 6 months later, but both of these I was compelled to get them when they came out. I don't see how the franchise is in decline.

Sometimes, like Guitar Hero, what more is there left to do or create? Maybe the game itself it on it's own already played out. I know it was to me played out when Viacom tried to purchase the company before Activision did. And if you want a company example that milks something for all it's worth...
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Old 06-11-2010, 12:57 PM   #19 (permalink)
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What??? CoD is declining???? You've got to be kidding me.

I played COD:MW for the FIRST time when it came out. It was so amazing to me that I then purchased the rest of the games from the franchise. Whne COD:MW2 came out, I immediately purchased the game.
Maybe he means in quality. MW2 was terrible.
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Old 06-11-2010, 01:06 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Maybe he means in quality. MW2 was terrible.
Why was it terrible? Are you referring to multiplayer?

Because I found the single player game play just as good if not better than the first MW.
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Old 06-11-2010, 01:32 PM   #21 (permalink)
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COD is solidly being eclipsed by BF and soon will be by MoH as well. In terms of quality and sales. Sure, the FPS market is huge, so CoD will have its slice of the pie in the short term, but the high level of competition also means that it needs to retain a devoted following, which it is losing.

And Rock Band is showing that the genre is not played out.
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Old 06-11-2010, 02:19 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Rock Band isn't Guitar Hero, and again, competition breeds better games. My statement was that maybe Guitar Hero as a franchise itself is played out, not the genre.

This holds true for the COD/BF/MOH franchises. They each add, subtract, or enhance the genre in some fashion.
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:01 PM   #23 (permalink)
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CoD adds nothing to the genre, apart from playing time. It hasn't since MW. That is my point.
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Old 06-11-2010, 11:09 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Sorry, I don't buy that.

Every franchise game out there has always been small minor adds to the game, so while you don't think that anything was added to MW to MW2, I think that there was. Two player Coop to me was a nice touch with places and spaces that I cannot play solo. Also, it allowed for me to play with my friend across the continent.

Very different than MW and an addition to the franchise. Not every game has to evolve the genre.

I don't PvP so it's not attractive to me to play multiplayer capture maps.

So I'm not following your point.
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Old 06-12-2010, 07:34 AM   #25 (permalink)
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The only thing wrong with MW2 is how they neutered the PC version. The gameplay itself was great IMO though I do think the maps were better in MW1.
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Old 06-12-2010, 12:00 PM   #26 (permalink)
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The single player was ridiculous. They were so full of themselves after MW. I beat the game in 5 and a half hours on the hardest difficulty. thats lunacy.

No wonder most of the infinity ward guys left.
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Old 06-13-2010, 01:04 AM   #27 (permalink)
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I recall that most of the top IW guys left because Activision fired them - they weren't churning out the $$$ fast enough, I reckon.
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