Tag Archives: rant

Online…OnLive…Please, no!

A quick counterpoint to “The future is online video delivered game experiences”, or even “Has to be logged into to an online service to authenticate”.

Online is not ubiquitous, nor is it a service like a phone network, nor is it reliable. It costs the customers money if there are active caps (Games can be upwards of 10GB. Better make sure you spread out reinstalls or deletions).

For video on demand versions like OnLive, the constant streaming will be interrupted, choppy, and only really available local to the right server, which means having server farms basically in your city for the latency problems to be removed.

For the “Has to be logged in to an online service to authenticate”, I’m looking at YOU Game For Windows Live and Dawn of War 2, there are a ton of times when the internet is unavailable. Making it mandatory for saves to be linked to an account on a PC is rather silly, even more so that you need to specially make the account offline by being online first to get offline functionality (which keeps it offline…or something…egad it’s so badly made!)

Even Steam doesn’t get off lightly – look, fine, make games choose to patch themselves, but having a huge patch released which slowly drip feeds even though you want to play the singleplayer is ridiculous.

The services for singleplayer are going to require the kind of service that ISP’s can never hope to provide, and I for one will soon dread it. That and not being able to sell on games, sigh. Or archive them (or their patches), or install anything offline, or play anything offline (say goodbye to portable laptop gaming or LAN parties).

It’s seriously getting silly, urg…I don’t want to be tied down to such a single point of failure for singleplayer, just do not want! 🙁 I hate to imagine what It’ll be like if the services are shut down – I guess Bioshock will be stuck not installing, and no more patches for Dawn of War 2, if I can even get it to run in the first place. Sigh. The current deals are all very one sided, for shame.

The Problem With Account Names

Mini rant incoming! Microsoft are, quite frankly, pathetic. Unlike Steam, which allows you to set your friend name independent of your account name (which might as well be an email account, since it doesn’t automatically create any URL’s or display it anywhere), Microsoft’s Live system has the audacity to make the front end name displayed to people exactly the same as your login name.

Then charges 800 points, £6.85, to change it to something else.

Sucks if you want clan names. Also it’s limited to 13 characters (what an arbitrary amount). My Steam account name “Finaldeath” is taken, so fair enough, I’m now Awesomestrong on that, and stuck as it, unless I want to pony up cash to change it. Shame I never joined the service however many years ago when it started, so I could choose my normal nickname or a decent variant on it.

I wonder how many original non-postfix-number names are out there. 13 character’s isn’t a lot to work with. I just think they’re idiots for not allowing you to change your friend’s name frankly, it’s such a small thing and yet they really annoyed me doing it this way.