Games journalism 2019 - Everything is streaming

I love Eurogamer’s idea of revising “Double-A” games as a weekly column:

The Double-A Team is a new feature series honouring the unpretentious, mid-budget, gimmicky commercial action games that no-one seems to make any more.

Double-A man doesn’t reload. When he runs out of bullets, he throws his gun away and picks up a new one. Double-A man shoots with the A button, not the right trigger. Double-A man can’t jump, but he can dive in slow motion. When he discovers his father’s corpse, Double-A man doesn’t cry, he thinks about revenge in a growling noir voiceover. Double-A man hangs out in back alleys, construction sites, prisons and seedy nightclubs. Double-A man says to the scantily clad girl, “For God’s sake, put on some clothes.” Double-A man’s dog is a weapon.

As soon as Christian Donlan invoked Double-A man in his recent piece on Red Faction: Guerilla, we knew we wanted to return this forgotten, mostly extinct species of game: commercial games with simple hooks, middling budgets and modest ambitions, big enough to be mass market but small enough to be a bit trashy or weird. They’re a kind of gaming we just don’t get any more, and as dumb as they could be, we miss them. And what better place to start than with Namco’s 2002 action potboiler, Dead to Rights?

Awesome… wtg ESA…

Little in this video is new news, but it’s a sad take on the gaming industry.

This is good stuff.

It’s weird that Steven Wright has resorted to writing about videogames to make ends meet. Interesting article, though.

Disco Elysium wishlisted.

Though when you think about it, it isn’t really that far of a stretch.

“The sooner you fall behind, the more time you’ll have to catch up.”

The struggling retail chain GameStop laid off over a hundred employees today, both at its corporate headquarters in Grapevine, Texas and at other offices including its subsidiary Game Informer magazine in Minnesota, where nearly half of the editorial staff lost their jobs in a surprise cut.

Some great folks lost their jobs today. I wish I was in a position to do more for them :( :( :(

Yeah, very saddened by the news. Game Informer has become one of my favorite outlets in the last couple years.

Yeah, it really improved after 2013 or so ;)

More seriously, the more I think about this the more it burns my ass. GI puts out a consistently good-to-great product for PEANUTS – seriously, I can’t tell you how nonexistent that budget is, or at least was – while GS leadership has been comically inept for 20 years running.

I mean, almost literally every single strategic decision has been a full-on disaster. Impulse, for starters. Trying so hard to force mobile hardware. Putting every single egg in the loyalty basket and praying that would change the fundamental realities of a market becoming increasingly hostile to their core business model. Ugh. Fuck them. ThinkGeek I guess actually made them some money, so there’s that.

So congratulations, GameStop. You managed to save some pennies by forcing layoffs from a successful vertical because you have completely and utterly failed to navigate the OBVIOUS TO LITERALLY EVERYONE decades-long metamorphosis of software retail.

Spin off GI to someone who gives a shit already.

This is how it works unfortunately. Computer Games Magazine might still be around today if not for and their spamming exploits.

Who’s going to buy a videogames magazine other than Future right now? Especially if it doesn’t have GS as a distribution channel.

Also, the Gamestop chain’s management was terrible before they bought Electronics Boutique, and unfortunately that management was installed as the new management and the people who ran EB (which was very successful) didn’t stick around. You can essentially blame Babbages/Software Etc. for the trajectory of all things Gamestop. They ruined Funcoland and EB, both stores that were a lot more friendly with customers and better focused on discount pricing.

They were never going to be able to get beyond the margins they were getting by selling used copies of recent releases for $55. Everything else must have felt like a waste of time and effort in comparison. Kept them from building any business model that was not based on screwing gamers for all they could get at the moment.

Once they can’t do that anymore, they aren’t built to do anything else. Nothing else can justify all of those retail storefronts.

Oh boy.

The conventional model has always been to treat students as a sort of blank slate, using education and information to inform them and teach from point zero. The combination of Gamergate hubs like subreddit KotakuInAction and unchecked alt-right personalities preaching harmful ideologies have changed that. An educator’s job is no longer just about teaching, but helping students unlearn false or even harmful information they’ve picked up from the internet.

That’s nothing new. Science teachers have had to deal with religious kids since the beginning, when God created the heaven and the Earth. Schools should be prepared to handle this problem by now.

The article goes into a lot more, but the feeling is that this is different because unlike previous indoctrination waves, GG started very young for some kids, and is constantly reinforceable thanks to social media ubiquity. A religious objection in the old days was teachable because in most cases a kid in college was breaking away from parents and the community they grew up in. You had a chance of educating against it. With kids that grow up on a steady diet of Gamergate, anything you teach is instantly torn down by a million YT videos or Twitter telling them otherwise. Weaponized online harassment featuring heavily in that.

None of that is unique to GG. It’s just the dividing point between before and now.