Tag Archives: Steam

The Necessary Decentralization Of Steam

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I’ve already done a couple posts about the way Valve handles what it lets onto Steam and how it manages the store, but Valve seems to want people to know some major changes are coming. I’m also still trying to figure out how I even view Steam as a store and a platform at this point. Continue reading

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The Only 5 Good Reasons To Choose Console Gaming Over PC

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A few interesting announcements have come about in PC gaming this week. Namco announced two of its upcoming games which previously bolstered the PS4’s library of exclusives in my view — Ni No Kuni II and Ace Combat 7, are now headed to PC. A smaller announcement of interest is that MSI at CES announced an upgraded version of its Trident PC-in-a-console-box. I think this is as good a time as any to try to sort through the reasons a lot of people still pick console gaming over PC gaming despite how much the differences between the two sides of gaming have shifted in recent years.

I’m not really writing this to say console gamers are wrong or that PC is objectively better. What I want to lay out is that there are legitimate reasons to choose a console as your primary platform over PC, and then there are outright myths made of a combination of outdated information and a bit of undue fear. I want to at least begin to separate the two. Continue reading

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Is The Xbox App More Of What Microsoft Should Be Doing?

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Maybe I’m really late on this one, but I haven’t really seen anybody talk much about the Xbox app in Windows 10. I only recently started using it a lot, and to be honest I’ve started booting up all my games through it more often than through the Steam client. Continue reading

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Is Steam More Of A Platform Or A Store?

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A recent episode of The Jimquisition has levied more criticism at the way Valve currently lets just about anything onto Steam these days. Last year I put up a blog post about why I think Steam’s shovelware probably deserves to be there, but since then a bit more information has become available about the effect Valve’s shift in curation has had. Continue reading

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Are PC Game Discs In North America Really Dead?

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I’ve made a couple posts in the past year or so complaining about the state of physical PC games in North America. Most people seem assume it completely died out years ago, or are on the opposite end of the spectrum and get surprised by recent revelations like Titanfall 2 on PC no longer being shipped on a physical disc. I think I can at least clarify most of the current status of North American physical PC game distribution for anyone still trying to shop for PC games at a store. I’ve been paying fairly close attention to it for the last several years. Continue reading

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ArmA III: Dynamic Recon Ops Has Been Improving

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Since I wrote about it in July, the ArmA III mod “Dynamic Recon Ops” continues to develop, adding features and squashing bugs. It was already really fun then, but now has become a far more functional and content-rich sandbox within ArmA’s existing sandbox. Continue reading

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New Backlog Rules

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I think most people who deliberately dedicate any significant income to video games at this point has a backlog, whether it’s just a dozen PlayStation games or 2000 games on Steam. We’ve probably all got our strategies for dealing with it or just trying to ignore it as it grows behind our backs. I think I’ve started to develop some new rules for attacking the backlog which will hopefully speed things up while making sure I still get enjoyment out of games. Continue reading

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How Often Are Games Actually Lost To DRM?

Since the last time I talked about DRM here we’ve had more time to see the effects of Denuvo. Instead of going through all the usual DRM talking points like sales or quality of services for paying customers versus pirates, I’m gonna focus on one thing: the perceived affect of DRM on the future preservation of games. The whole thing begs the question: do important games actually often become “lost to time” because of DRM making them inaccessible? Continue reading

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Was Bundling The Best Way To Distribute Demos?

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In the past few weeks a couple of high-profile demos have appeared for DOOM and the remake of System Shock. This is understandably getting some people nostalgic about game demos and contemplating their almost total disappearance from the big publisher scene.

I believe I’ve gone over the business reasons why demos are a lot less common these days. If I haven’t, just watch this video basically explaining that there are few situations where a demo is actually a net positive for sales. I still don’t 100 percent agree with that but it makes a good excuse for publishers.

Kotaku’s Patrick Klepek recently put up an article decrying how rare demos have become these days and in response someone tweeted a June 16th article about what’s happening to demos. The one from a couple weeks ago brings up a point I’d like to talk about: demo discs, or the old way of distributing demos, which when you think about it may have been more effective at advertising some games. Continue reading

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Steam Machines: What Actually Defines Success or Failure?

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The recent numbers Valve released for sales of the Steam Controller seem to include those that came with Steam Machines, which means from that one can infer total Steam Machine sales to be somewhere under half a million in seven months. It’s pretty easy to call that an abject failure of the Steam Machine initiative, but I have a question to ask about that:

A failure compared to what?

One of the biggest issues with Steam Machines has been public perception of the idea. I think a lot of people have shown a huge misunderstanding of what Valve’s intentions even were with Steam Machines. Maybe part of that is on Valve since its messaging with them was never crystal clear or very loud. In any case, I always thought comparing Steam Machines to consoles in terms of numbers and even audience to be a grave mistake. Continue reading

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