Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Why do Games have Limited or No Split-Screen?

If you've been paying attention, than you'll have noticed that a lot of games lately that offer Co-Op experiences are lacking in the Split-Screen Department. Well, as you probably guessed, the reason for this is money.

Publishers are telling the Developers to exclude Split-Screen Gameplay ("Couch Co-Op" as I like to call it) from their games if they have Co-Op. The reason for this is, again as usual, very stupid. They believe that by doing so it will force Gamers to purchase an additional copy to play with their friends, thus increasing their sales.

That explains the Consoles, but when games have Split-Screen on a Console game and they then port it to the PC and remove the Split-Screen, the reason they do this is because they believe it will curb piracy.

That is quite possibly the dumbest excuse I have ever heard, and I didn't believe it at first until I was told directly by my friend that runs a smaller development company.

Gaming is headed down even further, and I will continue repeating what I always say: BOYCOTT THESE HORRIBLE PUBLISHERS.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Yakuza Collection & Reviewers

Hey all, I'm going to be adding some random posts to my blog to fill the gaps in time between my BIG posts. Mostly they'll just be stupid stuff that nobody cares about but it might interest some people and it also helps keep the place alive.

Today I finally found "Yakuza 2" for the PS2. For those who don't know, Yakuza 2 is one of, if not the, rarest game(s) for the PS2. Most people won't agree but it's getting almost impossible to find this game, and if you can find it it's usually expensive; typically in the $40-$70 range.

I was able to pick this game up at GameStop for $16 today in mint condition with the Insert and Manual and Case completely intact, something that's very rare at GameStop's nowadays.

With this purchase I now own Yakuza 1, 2, 3 & 4. I have yet to purchase "Yakuza: Dead Souls" but I don't think I consider that really a part of the Franchise as a whole but rather a sort of spin-off, though for a complete collection I must purchase it, but I don't really think it's worth the $39.99+ that it retails for now, so I'm waiting for it to get back down.

I was able to pickup the 4 games for the following prices (before taxes of course):

Yakuza 1: $3.99
Yakuza 2: $15.49
Yakuza 3: $15.00
Yakuza 4: $20.00

Not bad considering I got all 4 of them for the price of a single new game and all of them are in very good condition. I've included some pictures below to show you.

I'm happy I was finally able to complete the "Quadrilogy" and once I have "Dead Souls" I'll finally be complete :).


I've been talking to a few people about becoming Game Reviewers over at my "True Reviews" blog. So far most have been stale and shown little interest, so here I am again letting everyone and anyone who cares know that I am looking for people who would like to write reviews at the "True Reviews" blog.

This is a Volunteer position, but what it will do is give you a medium in which to improve your writing skills (should they need improving) as well as the opportunity to get your name known and be more involved in the Gaming Community.

You don't have to have a huge Game collection or the latest-and-greatest of anything to be a part of it. I'm looking to fill the reviews site up with Games, Accessories, Systems and more from every year of Video Games: NES/SNES/Genesis/Xbox/Playstation 1, 2, 3/Gamecube/Gameboy/ etc. etc.

So if you're interested in joining up then shoot me an email on my contact page. If you don't want to scroll down or can't seem to find it, my email is here:


Hope you all enjoyed the post (for what it's worth) and check back often for more updates into the Gaming World.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

My Interview with a Q&A Specialist & Game Designer

Hello all,

I had the pleasure of meeting with a fellow Video Game Enthusiast as well as a Quality Assurance Specialist and Game Designer who has worked for EA and other companies doing work in Game Design and Writing, the same field I am in.

The following is the Interview that I had with him regarding the Industry, his thoughts and experiences in it, as well as much more.

"Mike" refers to me and what my questions were and "Anthony K." is the person I interviewed.


Mike: "What are some of your Favorite Hobbies?"
Anthony K."Hobbies, hahaha... that's a bit hard to say, since I'm a bit of a know it all and like to dabble in many things! My most often tapped into Hobby is writing.
It's very rare to find me not busy writing a story, whether for the games I am designing, or for one of my various stories I have on the go! Gaming is also another large Hobby of mine, though that has dwindled in the last few years as less and less quality titles have appeared, sadly."

Mike: "How did you get into the line of work of being a Quality Assurance (QA) Specialist?"

Anthony K.: "I had gotten a call from an agency (not related to EA) after posting a QA 'profile' on I believe it was Monster.ca after being encouraged to do so by a friend I knew and had heard about my interest in getting into QA with a Gaming Company. 
About 2 weeks later, I received a call to show up at a Hotel in Burnaby for an interview. The Interview itself did not really feel like they were testing me for quality at all, more so seeing if I had two braincells that functioned; it was that simple. After that I was told when to come in, given my numbers and such, and began working the following week.

Mike: "How long were you a Quality Assurance (QA) Specialist at EA?"

Anthony K.: "Well, officially, as in having a job specifically titled Quality Assuarance tester, it was only a brief 3 weeks before I quit the position due to... 'circumstances' in the work place."

Mike: "How would you best describe the Working Conditions doing 'QA' at EA?"

Anthony K.: "...as an employee there? Tolerable. As a human being? Miserable. As a Gamer? Without a doubt, a nightmare. We were not 'people' we were not a 'team'. We were robots there to mindlessly follow our given orders, and nothing else. 
The facility you were in could be compared to a gymnasium, with rows of tables lined up, with a television/controller/chair at each 'station'. You were lined up like... Robots in a factory. There was no involvement, no 'team', just do your job, that's it. The over-all Atmosphere as well, was... unpleasant." 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Thoughts on EA, Absence and Ramblings

Hey all, long time no see.

Sorry I haven't been on, I just finished with my publisher to release my third book and I'm working on more projects (games) so I'm real excited about that.

Anyways, I want to talk a minute about EA and their recent announcement that they're planning 100% all digital.

I don't want to say it, but, I told you so.

I have been in this industry for over 10 years, I have made contacts, friends, enemies and I have been in the board rooms and at the desks. From teams of 10 people making games where everybody shared every part of the game, to dedicated teams working on particular aspects of a AAA game, I know.

You need to start listening to what I've said and understand what it means for the future of gaming. Most people will see this and just think "no things won't be bad, stop being an idiot" well, guess what, it is that bad. The Gaming Industry has changed and it will never be the way it was again; but, that doesn't mean it's over.

I'm sure you've read all the articles about all of the executives and CEO's and heads of companies coming out and saying many things, such as digital gaming is the future or we need innovation, etc. etc.

I will tell you all the truth about why they're all saying this. As usual, they're forced to. The publishers are demanding that they support whatever they want or they won't publish for them and be able to get a mass-released game. It's not easy distributing your game to millions of people across the world; just look at the average sales of an Independent Game vs. a Mass-Released game by a Publisher.

Publishers such as EA and Activision (which is really Vivendi, the Mass Media Conglomerate) are Greedy as fuck and they want to control the gaming market the same way Microsoft controls PC's with Windows. Microsoft/Sony/Nintendo are cooperating with EA/Activision to a certain extent, and just how far those companies will go together depends on how the Gaming Community reacts to what they're doing.

I've been telling you over and over what their ultimate plan is now, and every week you see more articles telling you things I've already told you yet people still won't stand up and believe. The Gaming Industry is going to turn into nothing. People like Jean-Bernard Levy (Chairman of Vivendi/Activision-Blizzard), Robert Kotick (CEO & President of Activision-Blizzard) and others are Media Moguls and they are taking over and running these Gaming businesses into the ground in the name of profits.

Now, as you've all heard in the news, the board (including Jean-Bernard) are thinking about unloading Activision-Blizzard from Vivendi. Well, that can be good news or bad news. Their controlling stake in the company (Roughly 61%) can either be sold to a single entity or divided up, but either way the new majority holder (if they choose to unload it) could be a lot better or a lot worse.

This type of "management" is also happening over at EA, though Activision-Blizzard is actually trailing EA because EA came up with these ideas first (as I said in my other posts) so Activision-Blizzard aren't quite as bad as EA yet, but that's not for the lack of trying.

Gamers need to stand up and NOT SUPPORT these companies. DO NOT BUY A SINGLE EA OR ACTIVISION GAME EVER. If we do this, we will send a message to those companies that they cannot own our rights. Small developers and their teams, including myself, are being destroyed by this Greed. The higher-ups are controlling everything and doing everything the way they want. If you don't go with them, you don't have a job, it's as simple as that.

Stand up, tell them you'll fight back and don't support these Greedy Bastards. If you think this is being taken too far and over the limit, just sit and think for a minute about how you'd feel if there never was another video game coming out that was worth playing. All you have to play for the rest of your life are the games you have now. Think about it.

Gaming is a part of many lives, some more than others, but either way it's important.