Not fashion. Not fashion at all.

24 05 2009

So, I decided not to use this blog as a fashion-only blog anymore. Most of my thoughts aren’t about fashion, and I think my blog should express who I am and not just what I’m wearing. This said, I’ll talk about music, movies, politics, games, humor, TV and whatever comes to mind, as well as fashion.

I’ve been playing The Sims 3. Not, it hasn’t been released yet, but I downloaded the torrent. I’m not gonna try to justify myself about this, and I’m definitely not saying I only did it because I was pissed at EA, as I’m a downloader. Most of the stuff I watch, listen to or play are downloaded, because I think culture shouldn’t be a luxury. Think about this: My house costs my parents 800€/month. That’s 13 games at 60€. Most people in this country work their asses off to bring home 400€/month. That’s 7 games. The price of 7 games needs to be enough for them and their children live, eat, dress themselves, go to school, buy meds and everything else. 13 games pays for the ceiling above my head. There are people in Africa earning 1€/day for exhaustive work that would be violent even for forceful, well fed animals. That’s 1/60 of a fuckin’ game. I don’t believe that the DVD itself, the box, the printing services, the going gold and all that stuff costs more than 10€ per game, especially big games like The Sims, Halo, World of Warcraft and stuff like that. I would be willing to pay twice that value, considering the fact that everyone behind it should be payed a fair amount of money for working months or years on a game and that the production company still needs some profit. That’s 20€ per game, and everybody would be happy, gaming would still be a BIG industry, they could still swim in money. Following the same logics, I would say 7,5/10€ per music CD and 15€ per DVD movie would be more than fair, and i would be happy to pay it. Anyway, I would still demand a hell of a good game/cd/dvd, with no bugs, no pauses, good quality… Which brings me to what I want to talk about, Sims 3 and EA.

So, there’s this little thing called Sim Store, which, basically, is a website where we’ll pay 1€ for an item that should’ve been included in the base game, which already costs us 59,99€ (or 69,99€ if, like me, you’re planning on buying the collector’s edition). A game that you’ve been waiting on for months, because it’s been delayed from February to June, because EA wanted to do such a big thing of its release (and also because it was buggy as hell. Which, judging by the pirated version – it’s probably a beta, but a very close version to the final one – it still is). The deal you’re making to EA is: you buy the game, from which they’ve removed the best content to be sold later, for a lot of money. Then, you get home, you install it and you go and download the free content that comes with the game (this, of course, if you have internet access). At this point, you realize that it’s not free, because YOU PAYED FOR THE FUCKIN’ GAME. They just want you to know the website, because that’s where they’ll be selling the best content for a “friendly price”. And guess what! You get 10€ to spend there! Now, 10€ won’t pay all the content they took from the game, so you’ll still have to pay for thing that we’re meant to be included. But hey, at leasts they give you some of it! Oh, how kind of them! It’s like when thay started selling the individual items from the Stuff Packs on the store! You could spend 15€ in 60 items, if you bought the whole stuff, or you could spend 20€ in 30 items or so. Oh, wait, it’s worse, because now you don’t get the choice!

My point is: At the end of the day, if they insist on trying to sell what they took from us like it’s right, I’ll support the people who download the game instead of buying it. After all, I bet the money they’ll make whith the stupid store will cover the damage. Of course, if they had launched the game in the right date, marketed it from the beggining, kept it whole and not tried to be smarter than the gamers, they would still make that money. Maybe even more, if they would’ve been clever enough to open the store a few months after the release, when the craving for customizable content started. And they wouldn’t have pissed their loyal customers. As I said at the beggining of the post, I’m a downloader. But I never downloaded a Sims game which I hadn’t bought before (I downloaded it after, because I was stupid enough to lend most of my collection to someone who didn’t give it back). I never felt the need, because, apart from the price, I was happy with Maxis, and then EA (ok, I wasn’t happy with EA. But I wasn’t pissed also). Now, I think they’ve reached a limit. Maybe they’ll atract new customers doing what they did. Call me old-fashioned, but in their position, I would prefer to keep the old ones.

These are my PIRATE sims, kissing passionately like PIRATES.

These are my PIRATE sims, kissing passionately like PIRATES.

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One response

25 05 2009
Anonymous

“the DVD itself, the box, the printing services, the going gold and all that stuff costs ”

There’s WAY more behind the cost of a PC game than just those factors. You have staff – in which case, doesn’t EA have some 20,000+ staff members? I know Blizzard has thousands. That’s a hell of a lot of monthly wages that they have to cover. And wages depend on skillsets, not just what someone completely outside the industry thinks is fair…

There’s the cost of offices, everything that’s inside them and all the resources (electricity, etc) that they consume. The the running of the websites, the MANY servers that it takes to run it and goodness knows how much bandwidth they consume.

Different parts of the worlds have different economies, so you can’t compare Africa to Europe, America or even other less well off countries. While I agree with some parts (such as taking content out of a game to then make you pay extra), I find it hard to agree with you when you’re reasons for the price of the game are so far off it’s not funny. Especially when you’re still living under your parents roof and have no real world experience…

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