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No PC Ghost Recon: Future Soldier

Though plans for a PC edition of Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier was previously confirmed by Ubisoft, PC Gamer has word that the next installment in the Ghost Recon series is for consoles only, and that PC gamers will get Ghost Recon Online instead, which is apparently Ubisoft's new approach to PC piracy following their almost universally despised always-on DRM. Here's word from Ghost Recon Online producer Sébastien Arnoult:

We are giving away most of the content for free because there’s no barrier to entry. To the users that are traditionally playing the game by getting it through Pirate Bay, we said, ‘Okay, go ahead guys. This is what you’re asking for. We’ve listened to you – we’re giving you this experience. It’s easy to download, there’s no DRM that will pollute your experience.’

We’re adapting the offer to the PC market. I don’t like to compare PC and Xbox boxed products because they have a model on that platform that is clearly meant to be €60’s worth of super-Hollywood content. On PC, we’re adapting our model to the demand.

“When we started Ghost Recon Online we were thinking about Ghost Recon: Future Solider; having something ported in the classical way without any deep development, because we know that 95% of our consumers will pirate the game. So we said okay, we have to change our mind.

We have to adapt, we have to embrace this instead of pushing it away. That’s the main reflection behind Ghost Recon Online and the choice we’ve made to go in this direction.

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155. Re: No PC Ghost Recon: Future Soldier Nov 25, 2011, 18:22 ASeven
shponglefan wrote on Nov 25, 2011, 16:39:
a) Prices are generall lower than in the past and in some cases vastly lower;

As was said, fallacy of the worst kind. Even taking into account inflation and money devaluation over time, no, games weren't that vastly lower. They were about 20-25% lower comparing consumer purchase power to then and to nowadays.

shponglefan wrote on Nov 25, 2011, 16:39:
b) Quality gaming exists in abundance; while there is a ton of crap shovelware out there, it's not at all comparable to the 1978 situation;

Uuuh, it's exactly like 78. Publishers are pushing a lot of games per month (Just look at the past two months) and you only have to see the forums and the NPD numbers, amongst others, to see people are indeed buying less games. From the past 3 years, only about 8 or 9 months of the whole 36 showed an increase in sales, the rest was a decrease. And I mean software only, if we take hardware into account, namely consoles, the picture's more dire. The forums are also a good indication, console and PC alike, that people are getting fed up with the quality of games. Also, there's a major, vast migration going into other platforms, like mobile, and publishers are not adapting into it.

So yes, exactly like the 78 situation. Too many games released, not enough quality and more importantly, we're in a recession, closing on a full-blown depression. People have and do spend money on far more important and vital things. Add to this the prices of games escalating like it hasn't happened in a long time and you can see the whole picture. People will spend their money in less games because they cannot buy all games even if they wanted, they need to buy more important goods other than luxury and with the recession people are saving more and spending less. And the publishers are blind to all that and keep on hanging to a vastly obsolete business model. And I'm not even touching on the escalating development costs of games which, again, is exactly like 78. See ET in Wikipedia as the prime example of the folly of 78.

shponglefan wrote on Nov 25, 2011, 16:39:
c) New technology continues to allow for new avenues for gaming (like cell phones;

See above. There is indeed a vast migration into mobile platforms. Problem for the publishers, the price of a mobile game is about 80% cheaper or more than a full blown game. Publishers, spending millions in game development, are still not adapting to the mobile market, plus they are very resistant to changing their business model. That is not good for the industry in the medium and long term.

shponglefan wrote on Nov 25, 2011, 16:39:
d) Digital distribution eliminates the need for manufacturing/inventory costs, thus eliminating a huge chunk of costs and associate risks.

But digital distribution is still only used in a huge scale on the PC, and the PC, apart from the indies, is not the focus of the publishers, another major mistake. As such, publishers either ignore the benefits of digital distribution or implement terrible ideas like digital copies being as expensive or even more expensive than physical copies. It does eliminate a huge chunk of distribution costs for publishers but only if the console universe also adapts to it, and even so with their culture of second hand games I doubt the console gamers will adapt to this anytime soon.

shponglefan wrote on Nov 25, 2011, 16:39:
So no, this is not the same as the lead-up to the prior crash. Not by a long shot.

I disagree. In fact I lived through 78 and I can tell you, today is very, very much like 78.
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