Four News Stories

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For SEO purposes, I should probably break these into separate posts, but I just don’t feel like it. But I’ve identified four big gaming news stories of late that I figured I should at least make a note of for posterity.

Raph Koster’s New Company. Don’t really care. It’s vaporware until proven otherwise. Mainly it makes me wonder about the future of Crowfall. Perhaps he’s only left because Crowfall is fully set on its course and there’s no more creative work to do. Personally I’ve been wondering lately if Crowfall will be the first MMO to start its servers, run for a while with weekly press releases and publicity and patches, and then sunset, all without ever launching.

Mike O’Brien’s New Company. Don’t really care. It’s vaporware until proven otherwise. I’m quite pleased he’s leaving ArenaNet, because I didn’t want to give them any more money after his rather blatant subservience to Reddit mobs last year.

Roy Cronacher’s New Company. I don’t know this person at all, so I don’t really care. It’s vaporware until proven otherwise. But with two full companies worth of developers leaving ArenaNet, it certainly makes one wonder about the future of Guild Wars 2. (That future will probably be: Monetizing the crap out of existing players, because that requires the least development manpower, while new content releases slow to a crawl.)

Activision-Blizzard. Not being a current Blizzard customer or a citizen of either China or Hong Kong, I don’t have a dog in this fight. I’m just standing on the sidelines and laughing and fuming about all the rampant hypocrisy and naivity of everyone who has suddenly discovered that China owns a lot of American businesses, a thing that has been known for decades and can easily be researched *before* buying games, if one truly cares about the plight of democracy in Asia. Games, and also every single electronic device that we all depend on daily. I HAS PC wrote a post echoing my sentiments in a far more measured tone than I could manage. I’m embarrassed about the preachy and childish “cancel culture” stuff coming out of the gaming community right now, as if cancelling a Blizzard subscription will have the slightest effect on world politics, or absolve one of the guilt of money spent on Chinese-owned companies in the past. There are only two good things I can think of that might come from this: 1) Spikes of ad revenue for news sites (capitalism!), and 2) Perhaps one or two more people (out of millions) might think a bit before blindly throwing cash at games to ride the latest hype train.

UPDATE:

I should amend this to clarify a little bit. These are acceptable, understandable reasons to unsubscribe: 1) I’m not having fun playing WoW anymore. 2) I’ve thought about it and I’m just not comfortable paying money to this corporation under these circumstances.

These are unacceptable, silly, childish reasons to unsubscribe: 1) I’m taking a stand against dictators and I’m going to speak truth to power and change the world! (Gimme a break.) 2) I’m totally against censorship! This cannot stand! (Censorship did not occur. Everyone heard the streamer player. Punishment is what happened.) 3) What Blizzard did to that streamer player was totally unethical and illegal and immoral and just mean! (It was none of those things, it was a clear violation of Blizzard’s rules. “Ignorance of the law is no excuse, etc.”)

UPDATE TO THE UPDATE 10/10:

I should probably also clarify that I personally don’t begrudge anyone for continuing to subscribe to Blizzard games, and if I were enjoying any Blizzard games right now, I probably would have kept doing so myself. My personal outrage in this situation is far less about the offense itself than the mindless “cancel culture” that I see playing out mainly on Twitter.

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