User information for CrowFeather

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September 16, 2003
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31 Comments. 2 pages. Viewing page 2.
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Re: The purpose of Steam?
Sep 18, 2003, 17:32
Re: The purpose of Steam? Sep 18, 2003, 17:32
Sep 18, 2003, 17:32
"What bothers me about Steam is the only purpose that would seem to require a move to it is revenue generation, whether through ads,"

The ads are hardly even there.. (Only on download screens and the monitor screen that I've seen. And wouldn't you know it, both of which can be minimized.) Hell, even Blues News has ads, so what's your beef?

You mean to tell me it already has ads??? Ick.

I didn't pay for Blue'sNews, so I don't mind an ad or two. But I would be paying for Steam. (If it's bundled with something that costs money, it's not free.)


Ugly rumour. There is no spyware in Steam.

I know. Not yet, anyway. But Steam auto-updates itself. They could insert it at any time they (or whatever company aquired them) felt the need of some additional revenue.

"or a blatant monthly fee."

Entirly optional and UP TO YOU if you want to go the monthly fee route. Depending on how much content Valve and their partners put out, it could wind up being a BETTER deal even. (TF2, HL2 and CZ would wind up to be around 140 bucks.. a ten dollar fee a month for a year would be 120 a month. Of course that requires Valve to release stuff on time, but you get the idea..)

That's assuming Valve doesn't decide to charge for the games and a monthly service fee for Steam. Steam puts the parts in place to enable them to do that.

And the thing with Steam isn't that it's a Patch distributor, authenticator, server browser, game store/distributor, or an instant messanger. It's that it's ALL OF THESE THINGS rolled into one. You only need ONE program to use all of these.

I don't want all of these things rolled into one. I want them separate, so that I can avoid having the things I don't want.

And again, the monthly fee is OPTIONAL.

At the moment.

Seriously people.. There's plenty of OTHER things to complain about with Steam.. you don't need to bother making up conspiracy theories to slam Steam.. the program doesn't need any help.

Is something a conspiracy if it's right out in the open?

Thank you
Sep 18, 2003, 15:58
Thank you Sep 18, 2003, 15:58
Sep 18, 2003, 15:58
I don't know you. For perhaps a year or two, I have been visiting this site, getting the news I wanted, and never thinking about the man who spent his days reporting it.

Often we go through life without being aware of the people who labour at making our lives easier, more pleasant, or possible at all.

I cannot pray for you, since I do not believe in big invisible men in the sky. But I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your hard work, and to tell you that you have my sympathies.

I hope that they will lend you strength.

Re: wet panties
Sep 18, 2003, 15:41
Re: wet panties Sep 18, 2003, 15:41
Sep 18, 2003, 15:41
"I realise that a licensing agreement is very beneficial for you as a publisher, but that does not make it acceptable for you to violate consumer rights."

So, in fact, if Valve ever decided that in order to play multiplayer over Steam you'd HAVE to pay money for it, I'm pretty sure they would be in breach of approximately, what, 7 million or so consumer contracts?

Excellent point, and thank you for backing me up there, but I think that if it were to get to that point, Valve would already be in serious trouble even if they won.

What one is legally permitted to do is one thing. What it is wise to do is quite another.

Businesses live or die by the satisfaction of their customers. No business has ever, will ever, or can ever survive long after alienating its customer base. History is full of the bones of corporations whose officers forgot this lesson.

Re: The vidcard market
Sep 18, 2003, 15:31
Re: The vidcard market Sep 18, 2003, 15:31
Sep 18, 2003, 15:31
dependent not so much upon actual quality as upon preceived quality

Ah, but is the quality level you perceive not the actual quality level for you, and thus not the only one that matters?

Well, by "preceieved quality", I kinda meant "hype" , not "what stuff looks like when you buy it and install it", since once you get to that point, you've already spent your money, no?

The vidcard market
Sep 18, 2003, 00:16
The vidcard market Sep 18, 2003, 00:16
Sep 18, 2003, 00:16
Ya know, folks, reading all this, it occurrs to me that the success or failure of a GPU corp like NVIDIA, ATI, or (once upon a time) 3dfx is dependent not so much upon actual quality as upon preceived quality.
The internal workings of these things have become so complex that one really can't keep up with all the advances unless you have either (A) too much time, or (B) a job working with this sort of thing in some capacity. (And I say this from the standpoint of being darned good at both programing and VLSI design, if I do say so myself.)

So is it really any wonder that ATI gave Valve a fat sack of cash? And that Valve subsequently said that the new NVIDIA cards sucked? Or that NVIDIA was investigated by the SEC (Although, I must confess, I am ignorant as too the details of that.) Or that GPU companies have a habit of engaging in quite undignified displays of one-upsmanship?

I think we should take all of this was a grain of salt. It doesn't matter, at least to me, whose top-of-the-line card is slightly faster, because spending twice as much to get 10% more frames per second that you monitor cannot display and your eyes cannot see, is futile.

What *I* care about is what's going to give me decent performance on the current crop of games, for the least amount of my hard-earned dollars. When I notice that the new titles are starting to chug, I read few reviews, and buy whatever seems to fit the bill at the time.

Perhaps we ought to be grateful that this game of king-of-the-video-card-hill is pushing the amount of resources that game companies can draw on to make their stuff look great, but, all the same, it's not something that most of us need to worry about unless we enjoy doing so.

This comment was edited on Sep 18, 00:16.
The purpose of Steam?
Sep 17, 2003, 16:42
The purpose of Steam? Sep 17, 2003, 16:42
Sep 17, 2003, 16:42
What bothers me about Steam is the only purpose that would seem to require a move to it is revenue generation, whether through ads, spyware, or a blatant monthly fee.

What else would require a system like Steam?

Patch distribution? No, gamers have repeatedly demonstrated that they do not mind downlaoding patches themselves.

Authentication? No, WON works just fine.

Server browsing? Certainly not. There are many, many fine pieces of server browsing software out there.

Direct sale of games over the 'net? No. All you need for that is a web form to take credit card numbers, and plenty of bandwidth. The downloaded file need'nt be warez-able, either; just embed half of a key pair in it as the download starts, and keep the other half yourself. Instant authetication scheme, uniquely IDs each downloaded copy.

What's left?

It looks to me like somebody has had a good long look at the massive numbers of online CounterStrike players, multiplied them by $10 per month, and begun to drool.

Re: Mirror
Sep 17, 2003, 16:13
Re: Mirror Sep 17, 2003, 16:13
Sep 17, 2003, 16:13
(Note: Would you please have mercy on my eyes and separate quoted text from your own text somehow?)

I deny that you bought the CS 1.5 / HL GUI and WON system rather than the EULA right to the game content.

Some other people have made EULA-related remarks as well. While the EULA is not totally insignificant, there is something important going on here that you may not be aware of.

The EULA does not constitute the sales contract between you and the software vendor. It is not a statement of what rights you do or not have. It is just something the company wrote, usually for two purposes:

1. To demonstrate an ongoing effort to maintain their copyrights. (Otherwise they would lose them.)

2. To give them something to point at in court if they are sued for various reasons (their software damages something, has a security flaw, etc ).

While #2 does carry some legal weight, courts have struck down EULAs and 'shrink-wrap' licenses repeatedly when they violated the implict sales contract, state or federal law, or just plain common sense.

The same is also true of waivers and agreements that other businesses might try to make you sign.

Please, people, as a general rule, don't let sellers intimidate you into thinking you have "signed away" your rights. You cannot "sign away" a right, and most of these "agreements" are not worth the paper they are (or are not) printed on.

You can be melodramatic all you want but Steam (when it works ) enables you to access exactly the same games through a different launcher.

And I would not make an issue of this, save that said launcher is malware.

But I do have a right to make an issue of it. When I purchased CounterStrike, Sierra/Valve and I made an agreement. I agreed to pay them X amount of money, and they agreed to give me in return a product that would perform as advertised. (That EULA may contradict that, but it's not allowed to. That's black-letter law.)

Hmmmm I'd love to know where you found out enough about me to label me a nihilisitc corporate apologist

I don't recall having said that, although in this specific instance you do seem to be attempting to defend a particularly virulent piece of nonsense. I don't know, and do not alledge, that you make a habit of this.

What Valve is doing is just silly. Even if they had a clear-cut legal and moral right to do it (they don't), annoying your customers is a bad business move, and lately, I see annoyed people. They're all around us.

Valve's best move, at this point, would be to release small patches that tie their games into the new ID system without the need for Steam, thus making Steam totally optional. If it truely is superior and nifty and good for users (instead of malware, or the thin edge of a paid-monthly-subscription wedge), then users will voluntarily migrate to it.

The fact that it has *not* been made totally optional makes me profoundly suspicious of Valve's motives.

Re: wet panties
Sep 17, 2003, 01:17
Re: wet panties Sep 17, 2003, 01:17
Sep 17, 2003, 01:17
nice post. why don't you make it longer next time.

I apologize for the excessive length. I had rather a lot to say.

Re: wet panties
Sep 17, 2003, 01:02
Re: wet panties Sep 17, 2003, 01:02
Sep 17, 2003, 01:02
Let us ignore, for a moment, your use of characterizations, straw-man arguments, and ad-hominem attacks, and address whatever content may be left in your self-described "rant":

Valve admitted they screwed up and underestimated the demand and didn't have enough servers up. They also said they're going to try to fix this asap. What more do you want?

I want the option not to use Steam at all. I am the customer. Give me what I want.

Of course there are still issues that I'd like addressed like any other discerning gamer - eg. additional gui feedback, better handling of mods, better responsiveness to timeouts, and local casting support ..... but this shrill 'wet-panties' whinging is just nauseating.

More nauseating than childish ad hominem? Or about the same?

They are a company like any other trying to make money

Why is it that whenever a company is criticized for doing something dirt-stupid, underhanded, or both, some joker always says "They're just trying to make money!", as if this goal were somehow more noble than the quest for a cancer cure. I know they're trying to make money. I take exception to the manner in which they go about it.

and set up a new method of software distribution, authentication and cheating control that hopefully ends up benefiting everyone

Bravo for trying. Maybe they'll eventually succeed. But if it were really good for me as well as for them, wouldn't it be sufficient to make it optional?

As for people saying that they're going to pirate it because of this - grow up! Valve has an EULA with you.

Indeed. Which they are about to violate.

They don't owe you the use of their 5 year free WON service

And there is where you are wrong. They most certainly do. They sold me a product. They owe me that it will perform as advertised for as long as I care to use it. If they cannot deliver, then whose fault is that?

Certainly not mine.

Aditionally, WON is most certainly NOT free. I paid for it when I paid for CounterStrike. Is it too expensive to keep running those authentication servers? Too bad. Shoulda charged me more. Not my fault if their planning was poor.

they don't owe you the specific old CS launching GUI

Yes, they do. That was what they sold, and that was what I bought. Now if they wish to implement an alternative that I like, I am unlikely to complain or make an issue of it. But that is up to me, not them.

and they certainly don't owe you an alternative to steam if you're too stupid to get it to work.

Well, I haven't noticed myself drooling lately. (Nor foaming, for that matter, which is more than can be said for some.) In fact, whether I can get it to work or not is not the issue. I don't want to get it to work. I don't want it.

Is that sufficently clear?

*OMG they owe me a CD teh phuck3rs!* PLEASE.

Yes in-deedy. I am childish enough to believe that if I pay for something, I should get what I paid for. Why am I so inconsiderate of the rights of corporations to change what they sold me after I bought it? I must have been raised improperly.

Besides HL2 retail will be offline non-steam version until you choose to activate it.

That statement had not escaped my attention. However, it is not relevent to what is being done to HL multiplayer, and to CounterStrike.

Really, people, this whole thing reminds of nothing more than that Monty Python sketch:
Cut to a smart dinner party. There are two couples in evening dress at the table. Candles burning on the polished wood, a fire burning in the grate. Muted music and sophisticated lighting.)

Hostess (R. Davies): We had the most marvellous holiday. It was absolutely fantastic.

Host (M. Palin): Absolutely wonderful.

Hostess: Michael, you tell them about it.

Host: No, darling, you tell them.

Hostess: You do it so much better.

(The doorbell rings.)

Host: Excuse me a moment.

(The host goes and answers the door of the flat, which opens straight into the dining room. Standing at the door is a large grubby man carrying a tin bath on his shoulder. There are flies buzzing around him. He walks straight in.)

Man (J. Cleese): Dung, sir.

Host: What?

Man: We've got your dung.

Host: What dung?

Man: Your dung. Three hundredweight of heavy droppings. Where do you want it? ('he looks round for a likely place)

Host: I didn't order any dung.

Man: Yes you did, sir. You ordered it through the Book of the Month Club.

Host: Book of the Month Club?

Man: That's right, sir. You get 'Gone with the Wind', 'Les Miserables' by Victor Hugo, 'The French Lieutenant's Woman' and with every third book you get dung.

Host: I didn't know that when I signed the form.

Man: Well, no, no. It wasn't on the form - they found it wasn't good for business. Anyway, we've got three hundredweight of dung in the van. Where do you want it?

Host: Well, I don't think we do. We've no garden.

Man: Well, it'll all fit in here - it's top-class excrement.

Host: You can't put it in here, we've having a dinner party!

Man: 'Salright. I'll put it on the telly.

(He brings it into the dining room. The guests ignore him.)

Host: Darling... there's a man here with our Book of the Month Club dung.

Hostess: We've no room, dear.

Man: Well, how many rooms have you got, then?

Host: Well, there's only this room, the bedroom, a spare room.

Man: Oh well, I'll tell you what, move everything into the main bedroom, then you can use the spare room as a dung room.

(The doorbell goes and there standing at the door which hasn't been closed is a gas board official with a dead Indian over his shoulders.)

Host: Yes.

Gas Man (G. Chapman): Dead Indian.

Host: What?

Gas Man: Have you recendy bought a new cooker, sir?

Host: Yes.

Gas Man: Ah well, this is your free dead Indian, as advertised...

Host: I didn't see that in the adverts...

Gas Man: No, it's in the very small print, you see, sir, so as not to affect the sales.

Re: No subject
Sep 16, 2003, 20:04
Re: No subject Sep 16, 2003, 20:04
Sep 16, 2003, 20:04
The people that want to play counterstrike or whatever cant you just download steam, install it, Make an account with your CD-Key, then uninstall steam. Get the standalone release of 1.6 and use as normal? Never have to use steam again.

No, alas, we cannot. Steam must be running to play CS 1.6 online. And we cannot play 1.5 at all once the WON authentication servers are shut down.

Re: Deus Ex
Sep 16, 2003, 15:05
Re: Deus Ex Sep 16, 2003, 15:05
Sep 16, 2003, 15:05
Some of you guys are pretty pissy. You didn't HAVE to download Steam on the day it was released

That's not the point. We're mad that we have to download it at all.

You don't HAVE to have anything extra in your Steam folders, you can delete any cache you want and keep any games you don't want not up to date.

Yes, but we have to have Steam, don't we?

Maybe Valve can make the UI a little bit more explicit about this stuff, that'd be a valid complaint, but you're talking about this like they've taken your HL install CD and cracked it into pieces or something.

In effect, they have. In two weeks, I can no longer play CounterStrike, because I will not install Steam.

So essentially what they are saying is: "Install Steam, or we will smash your CD into little tiny pieces with this hammer."

If you don't have a problem with that, I suggest that you re-examine your attitudes about what corporations should and shouldn't be allowed to do to you.

If you don't want Steam, don't use Steam.

I paid for retail CounterStrike. I want CounterStrike.

I was planning to buy Half-Life 2. I want Half-Life 2.

I do not want Steam.

Is there any way that I can have the first two without the third? No. Valve has decided what they will allow me to have.

And you wonder why I am angry about this?

Well, I for one, will have none of the above. I'll wait for the warez version of HL2 single-player. I normally don't do that to software companies, because they've worked hard and deserve to be paid.

But in this case, I figure that Valve owes me for my nice shiny CounterStrike CD that they have effectively smashed with a hammer.

This comment was edited on Sep 16, 15:09.
31 Comments. 2 pages. Viewing page 2.
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