THQ has no sympathy

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Gabe
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Gabe » Mon Aug 30, 2010 6:27 am

TMR wrote:That's only true if the second hand users are warned before purchase that they'll be charged not only for the program but for online play. Hands up who expects large warnings printed on the boxes so that buyers can make an informed decision...? [Cynically watches tumbleweeds roll past.]
I've seen stickers on pre-owned copies of Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age stating that you need to pay to get the additional content that originally applied to the first-hand purchaser, so sticks hand up.

It's no good for a company to have angry customers come back the next day ranting about things not working/being included, so I think it'll happen, yeah. And has been mentioned (IIRC) by one of the top-folks at Game or Gamestop (when talking about EA's Online Pass plans) they view it as an opportunity to sell codes at the same time as the games.

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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Gabe » Mon Aug 30, 2010 6:31 am

Freestyler wrote:My worry for the future can be summed up in a few points:
2. Secondary Concern: All Your Base Are Belong To Publisher. Publishers can't agree on anything, and are often run as Fiefdoms. I can't see Valve ever using Battlenet, neither will Microsoft ever use anyone other than themselves. So we'll have multiple accounts across multiple identities across multiple "Content Delivery Devices." (that we used to call consoles. :cry: )
How many Online Identities do we need to have for Christ's sake? Why are those Identities all handled differently by different Companies? Why am I bombarded by ever-changing and unreadable Terms & Conditions every time I want to play Tomb Raider 16: Lara's Revenge? Why would I need to have 40 different mutually-exclusive Friends Lists across all the Publishers?
This is actually a fair point; I think one of the big barriers to ever having a totally online-enabled userbase is the number of passwords/client software/etc you need to have. What's worse is where you have something auto-logged in and you forget the password because you haven't had to use it for so long.

I have to use about 10 different passwords each day purely at work, why must these companies complicate my life further when I'm trying to relax? Of course, a single online-identity won't happen anytime soon because there are too many vested interests in keeping things apart. Ah well.

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TMR
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by TMR » Mon Aug 30, 2010 8:49 am

Gabe wrote:
TMR wrote:That's only true if the second hand users are warned before purchase that they'll be charged not only for the program but for online play. Hands up who expects large warnings printed on the boxes so that buyers can make an informed decision...? [Cynically watches tumbleweeds roll past.]
I've seen stickers on pre-owned copies of Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age stating that you need to pay to get the additional content that originally applied to the first-hand purchaser, so sticks hand up.
"Printed on the boxes" doesn't equate to "stickers", apart from the fact that stickers can be removed, misapplied or forgotten entirely, i'm assuming those particular ones were applied by whoever was reselling the game so the original purchaser wouldn't have known and they're just as entitled to the knowledge since i'd assume it'll affect their selling on price.
Gabe wrote:It's no good for a company to have angry customers come back the next day ranting about things not working/being included, so I think it'll happen, yeah.
Ubisoft didn't warn anyone on the box about the Assassin's Creed 2 DRM if memory serves and it'd take a complete idiot to think that scheme wasn't going to p*ss off the punters in the first place - the publishers are... how can i put this politely? A tad out of touch with how the rest of the world think - that's how i explain the "minimum specifications" on the backs of game boxes at least!

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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Gabe » Mon Aug 30, 2010 9:08 am

TMR wrote:"Printed on the boxes" doesn't equate to "stickers", apart from the fact that stickers can be removed, misapplied or forgotten entirely, i'm assuming those particular ones were applied by whoever was reselling the game so the original purchaser wouldn't have known and they're just as entitled to the knowledge since i'd assume it'll affect their selling on price.
Well both games - printed on the sleeve - mention a one-time use code with a 'full retail purchase', and you'd have to be *very* optimistic to expect that still to apply on a pre-owned title - so this is covered. I only mentioned the stickers because they are more prominent that the actually-printed material. Besides, to be honest it isn't up to the publishers to promote that, is it? They don't want you buying second-hand in the first place, so don't market games as such.
TMR wrote:Ubisoft didn't warn anyone on the box about the Assassin's Creed 2 DRM if memory serves and it'd take a complete idiot to think that scheme wasn't going to p*ss off the punters in the first place - the publishers are... how can i put this politely? A tad out of touch with how the rest of the world think - that's how i explain the "minimum specifications" on the backs of game boxes at least!
Well that's the PC title, and we're talking primarily about console games here so it isn't strictly relevant - but I take your point. But DRM is a completely different kettle-of-fish, and with it being commonplace for many years now there is a level of expectation that there will be *some* DRM to annoy people whereas this is a fairly new concept for consoles. Doesn't make it right, but I don't think it is the same issue.

OT really, but does the box for the game not mention *anywhere* about the DRM (this is having to be always connected to play, isn't it)?

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killbot
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by killbot » Mon Aug 30, 2010 11:15 am

Gabe wrote:
TMR wrote:That's only true if the second hand users are warned before purchase that they'll be charged not only for the program but for online play. Hands up who expects large warnings printed on the boxes so that buyers can make an informed decision...? [Cynically watches tumbleweeds roll past.]
I've seen stickers on pre-owned copies of Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age stating that you need to pay to get the additional content that originally applied to the first-hand purchaser, so sticks hand up.

It's no good for a company to have angry customers come back the next day ranting about things not working/being included, so I think it'll happen, yeah. And has been mentioned (IIRC) by one of the top-folks at Game or Gamestop (when talking about EA's Online Pass plans) they view it as an opportunity to sell codes at the same time as the games.
Of course, this should be accompanied by a lowering of the price of the second hand game. I can easily foresee Game, for example, selling a new copy of Game A for £40, whilst charging £37 for a second hand copy and £5 for the code to make the second hand copy work. Yes, they're that stupid.
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TMR
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by TMR » Mon Aug 30, 2010 11:32 am

Gabe wrote:Besides, to be honest it isn't up to the publishers to promote that, is it? They don't want you buying second-hand in the first place, so don't market games as such.
Pointing out that the second hand sale value is reduced and an extra payment is required would be in their best interests, it should push customers towards the first hand copies and lower the odds of someone trying to trade in since the buy in price will probably be lower (it won't be a complete copy, i'm sure the second hand merchants'll lock onto that one like a laser-guided weapon). And personally, i'd say that if they're trying to change the playing field in this way it's down to them to explain what has been done to potential customers before purchase, yes.
Gabe wrote:Well that's the PC title, and we're talking primarily about console games here so it isn't strictly relevant
i was offering an example of how Ubisoft (who publish PC and console games) are out of touch with what their customers think, it's merely the first one that sprang to mind. A random console-based example would be XBLA games that require the internet connection to be up in order to run, something i didn't discover until our broadband went down and i fancied a couple of goes of Geometry Wars: RE2 whilst i waited for the service to be restored; i seem to remember that one being warned about, but it's buried away rather than prominent.
Gabe wrote:But DRM is a completely different kettle-of-fish, and with it being commonplace for many years now there is a level of expectation that there will be *some* DRM to annoy people whereas this is a fairly new concept for consoles. Doesn't make it right, but I don't think it is the same issue.
Technically, the one use account we're talking about could be filed under DRM as well at least in concept, it's enforcing the digital rights of the publisher to not let more than one person use the paid for account. And again, it's moving the goalposts so doing so without warning consumers isn't going to do your business much good in the long run.

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Freestyler
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Freestyler » Mon Aug 30, 2010 3:10 pm

Here's another thing many of us haven't considered about the New / Pre-Owned market: AVAILABILITY.

Let's take a title completely at random: Batman: Arkham Asylum.

Now, most people will concur this is a top-flight game. It's "worth" it's £39.99 or whatever. People bought it. I don't blame them! :lol:
The issue is purely about myself. I didn't buy it at release. Hell, I don't even own it yet. But I do want it.

What happens if the retailer has removed it from the shelves six months down the line to make room for other titles? It might not happen with Triple A titles so quickly, but it happens all the time to other games. What happens if I can't get hold of a "Brand New" copy in 2 years time? With a gutted Pre-owned market all it leaves me is searching the Internet. What happens if they run out of stock? What happens if I have no internet connection? Publishers won't print titles forever, just as Retailers won't stock titles forever. As it is they only really cater to the first month of a games' release, since that's when it does the majority of its sales. After that it's usually on the Pre-Owned shelves, since the regular shelves have been cleared for the new releases.

Am I being expected (in the future) to buy a Pre-owned version and then buy another "Code" to unlock the game? Will the Pre-Owned + Code = Retail Price? Am I expected to be happy with second hand product that would cost me the same potentially as the product brand new? (which is now impossible to find brand new as they're no longer stocking it?)

Games Software isn't like the Mobile Phone Industry. We don't continually buy and swap handsets every three months. Some of us want to buy games that were released last year! Unheard of in the mobile market I know. :roll:
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killbot
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by killbot » Mon Aug 30, 2010 3:46 pm

Freestyler wrote:Here's another thing many of us haven't considered about the New / Pre-Owned market: AVAILABILITY.

Let's take a title completely at random: Batman: Arkham Asylum.

Now, most people will concur this is a top-flight game. It's "worth" it's £39.99 or whatever. People bought it. I don't blame them! :lol:
The issue is purely about myself. I didn't buy it at release. Hell, I don't even own it yet. But I do want it.

What happens if the retailer has removed it from the shelves six months down the line to make room for other titles? It might not happen with Triple A titles so quickly, but it happens all the time to other games. What happens if I can't get hold of a "Brand New" copy in 2 years time? With a gutted Pre-owned market all it leaves me is searching the Internet. What happens if they run out of stock? What happens if I have no internet connection? Publishers won't print titles forever, just as Retailers won't stock titles forever. As it is they only really cater to the first month of a games' release, since that's when it does the majority of its sales. After that it's usually on the Pre-Owned shelves, since the regular shelves have been cleared for the new releases.

Am I being expected (in the future) to buy a Pre-owned version and then buy another "Code" to unlock the game? Will the Pre-Owned + Code = Retail Price? Am I expected to be happy with second hand product that would cost me the same potentially as the product brand new? (which is now impossible to find brand new as they're no longer stocking it?)

Games Software isn't like the Mobile Phone Industry. We don't continually buy and swap handsets every three months. Some of us want to buy games that were released last year! Unheard of in the mobile market I know. :roll:
Absolutely. It's unlikely to happen with big-name titles like Batman (which will probably do the budget rounds and be available for a couple of years yet) but with quirky, low-print run Japanese titles like Muramasa or Sin & Punishment 2... in a years or two's time, second-hand is going to be the only way to play those games. Sadly, THQ wants to engender a situation where used copies gather dust on the shelves of people who have already bought and completed them while others who would dearly love to play them but missed out when they were new will never have a chance of owning them.
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Fightersmegamix
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Fightersmegamix » Mon Aug 30, 2010 4:24 pm

I went in gamestation today for the first time in ages, the top ten games on each format could be bought new, almost everything else was second hand. I don't really blame publishers for using codes for online access, retailers are taking the p*ss.

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thevulture
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by thevulture » Mon Aug 30, 2010 4:38 pm

Auctually, Batman is a pretty good example, It`s had a second release, This time the S.E with 3D goggles etc etc version, so yeah, what if you were after the original version, (Had NO interest in the 3D side, or it would`nt work for you, eye issues etc), i`d wager the retailer had got shot of the STD.Edition, in favour of the new release, once that`d had it`s run, shelf needed for 'Mega-over hyped title:mind Boggling edition'.So chances of finding the original?Slim.Just how long does a game stay on a shelf at a retailer before being replaced? Just what is going to be cleared to make way for Move/Kinnect packs? then the 3DS and so on?.PSP games at retail? Very slimpickings these days, shelf space given to others.My local indie? Minimal PC, NO 360 stuff, just PS2,PS3, Wii, DS.Another just set up?No NEW games, just 2nd hand-Shelves creaking under wieght of 2nd hand PS2 stuff.

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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Freestyler » Tue Aug 31, 2010 3:07 am

My own local shops have almost gutted their PC. PS2, GC and Xbox pre-owned stock, simply to make room for the pre-owned Xbox 360, DS and PS3 titles. There's simply too many of them and not enough room. So something had to give, and sadly it was the "old gen" stuff. Hell, there isn't even any Dreamcast stuff! Literally none.

In the main city centres there are Cex and larger Gamestations which do cater for the "Vintage Market" :lol: we all know and love, but even then they have shelves and shelves of PS2 / Xbox games on sale for as little as 50p. Hardly coining it in are they? :cry:

I know the Retailer used to get a massive cut of a game's sale, but apparently it's tailed off quite rapidly. I remember a mate of mine who managed the local GAME store telling me he'd had no choice sometimes in what he stocked, simply because "Head Office" had made some deal somewhere or other and every store got the same roll-out. Which they had better sell OR ELSE! Being forced to upsell a load of tat on unsuspecting customers (in the form of un-splittable console bundles) was an aspect of work he said he found particularly distasteful, but since that's where the majority of their bottom line came from....



Oh, for the Nostalgia freaks amongst us: Microsoft already tried the whole Software As A Service thing in the Corporate world with it's licensing of Microsoft Office. It ended badly. :lol:
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killbot
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by killbot » Tue Aug 31, 2010 10:50 am

In tribute to this thread I went out this afternoon and bought a second-hand THQ game (de Blob). How do you like them apples, Unnamed THQ Creative Director?!??!
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by the_hawk » Tue Aug 31, 2010 11:09 am

:lol: I might do the same, you can pick it up for about a fiver these days & it's supposed to be a decent game.

Any other THQ games I should look out for 2nd hand/avoid buying brand new?
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by JetSetWilly » Tue Aug 31, 2010 12:34 pm

the_hawk wrote::lol: I might do the same, you can pick it up for about a fiver these days & it's supposed to be a decent game.

Any other THQ games I should look out for 2nd hand/avoid buying brand new?
DON'T get Metro 2033. It's boring and really awful (like most of THq's output). Saying that, De Blob does look really good. Might have to be a holiday purchase :D
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Freestyler
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Re: THQ has no sympathy

Post by Freestyler » Tue Aug 31, 2010 3:19 pm

I wonder if I can grass you all to THQ and get some free online codes...?
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