Log in Register

Login to your account

Username *
Password *
Remember Me

Create an account

Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.
The Best RPG Characters To Hang Out With
K2 component

Editorial: The Aliens Colonial Marines Lawsuit Is Wrong

Write on: Wed, 08 May 2013 by  in PC Games 129735 comments Read 106390

Aliens: Colonial Marines will likely be remembered as one of the biggest disappointments of this generation of gaming. Sega and developer Gearbox have rightly been vilified for the game's poor quality and their failure to deliver on the promises they made to fans. However, the class action lawsuit that has been filed against the companies is misguided and deserves to fail.

 Yesterday, the website Polygon reported that a California class action lawsuit had been filed against Sega and Gearbox Software. It alleges that the companies engaged in false advertising and that demos that were shown of the game at various events were not representative of the finished product (you can read more details on the suit here).

 All of this is, to a degree, true. The finished product that Sega and Gearbox delivered was shoddy, and was reviewed poorly by nearly every major video game publication and website, including Game Informer. Its PlayStation 3 Metacritic rating currently stands at a paltry 43. However, this suit is reckless and misguided. If successful, it could threaten the game industry's future.

 Here's the thing: this suit is attempting to seek legal restitution for a game's perceived lack of quality. The key word in that sentence is "perceived." Now, in this case, the prevailing opinion is overwhelming: Aliens: Colonial Marines is a bad game. But on what basis? Whose opinion? What's the legal definition of a "bad game"?

 The fact is that there is no reasonable way to quantify the quality of a game. What's a good game to me might not be a good game to you. I've been reviewing games at Game Informer for years, but I'm always struck by the emails and letters I receive about games that I have given very negative scores. There are games that I literally couldn't have imagined anyone enjoying, yet I'll receive a passionate email from a fan telling me the ways in which I failed to review it "correctly."

 Every gamer has different metrics for what makes a game enjoyable. To make matters more complicated, one person's metrics often change from game to game. One of my colleagues, Joe Juba, recently told me that one of his favorite games of his generation is Deadly Premonition. But even he admits that the game is far from polished, and severely lacking in many technical respects. However, in that case, Joe's love of the game's quirky characters and odd sensibilities outweigh its faults. It's likely that there are people out there who enjoyed playing Aliens: Colonial Marines, as poorly done as it is.

 For this reason, I expect that this suit will gain little traction in the court system. If games are truly an art form, then any work of art is open to the individual's own opinions and values. Aliens: Colonial Marines fails in many respects, but how can a court determine its quality on any set criteria? It's impossible.

 

The suit also charges of false advertising and the claim that early demos of the game shown were misleading. Frankly, that's true. For a major press event or convention, developers work hard to show the game in the best light, usually polishing a certain level or gameplay sequence to perfection for the purposes of demonstration. By nature, it's an idealized view of the game. Sometimes, the end product does not match what was suggested by the demo. Other times, features that were originally in the game design prove too technically challenging and are cut wholesale. In addition, there's the question of whether press demos of a game even constitute "advertising" in the first place.

 

As the press, we try to evaluate the demos that we see and, hopefully, give consumers an accurate opinion of how good the game may turn out to be. But it's not an exact science - and it's also not fair to judge a complex product like a video game before it's done. I've seen it with my own eyes. Prior to the release of the original Uncharted, Naughty Dog showed a demo of the game at E3 that was, frankly, a bit of a mess. Many of the reports out of E3 reflected these concerns. However, Naughty Dog spent those next months wisely and delivered a very polished and entertaining game. Conversely, I've seen games that looked amazing two years from release that never came together.

 

To be truly informed before launch, consumers must read reviews, which is the only real way of knowing about the end quality of the finished product without playing it themselves. In the case of Aliens: Colonial Marines, the critical consensus was clear: the game is terrible. Judging by the sales numbers, the reviews did their job of informing consumers that this game wasn't worth buying.

 

The suit says that, by withholding review copies of games and embargoing reviews until the day of release, Sega and Gearbox sought to mislead gamers who preordered the game. Again, in some respects, the litigants are not wrong. However, as the press, we have no legal right to receive review code ahead of time. In fact, publishers send out review code to the press as a courtesy. They could easily require us - and sometimes do in the case of particular games - to go out and buy retail copies on launch day. This means that reviews won't hit until as late as a week after launch. It's not a great situation. But, make no mistake; Sega isn't required to give us copies of their games.

 

If successful, this suit opens up game publishers to all sorts of frivolous and damaging lawsuits. Not every game you buy is going to be great, but that doesn't give you the right to seek damages. As a consumer, you should stay vigilant, stay informed, and be skeptical of the claims that publishers make. If you're concerned that a game might not be as good as advertised, wait until the reviews go online before you make your purchasing decision.

 

I suspect that this suit is in part a result of the desire of gamers for Sega and Gearbox to be punished for their sins against the Aliens franchise. But don't worry, they have already been punished by the highest court in video games: the marketplace. I'm sure the millions that Sega lost on this game will make it a lesson the publisher won't soon forget.

Last modified on Saturday, 25 May 2013 02:01
Super User

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Cras nulla lectus, aliquam a tempor ut, malesuada vel augue. Suspendisse tempor pellentesque accumsan. Aliquam sed risus mauris, sed placerat risus. Nunc ac pharetra ligula. 

Website: www.bowthemes.com

129735 comments

  • Chase Chase commented on Feb 25, 2018 Comment Link

    Will I have to work shifts? http://peepgamecomix.com/can-i-buy-amoxicillin-over-the-counter-in-the-uk-7f64.pdf amoxicillin to buy in uk Those signs of improvement helped offset results at marineunit MacGregor - a maker of hatch covers and cranes for ships -whose sales forecast for this year was cut to 800 million eurosfrom 850 million after some customers deferred orders.
    http://proteo.hu/clindamycin-used-to-treat-sore-throat-d6d3.pdf#tail cleocin 600 mg ampul “I thought it was special that Andy got a chance to pitch; he did a great job,” Jeter said. “Those guys are like brothers to me, so it’s pretty emotional at times knowing I’m not playing any more this year, I’ve played my last game with those two, but it was great. I thought what the fans did for him was just as good as what they did for Mo.”
    http://www.renate-europe.net/phentaslim-bodybuilding-ace7.pdf#wireless phentaslim customer reviews Though grieving quietly alongside his family, the screen and stage actress reportedly took over much of the planning for Monteith’s memorial after the news broke. Her rep issued a statement asking for privacy at the time, and for two weeks Michele was understandably neither seen nor heard from. 
    http://www.palace.se/mazzogran-reviews-cf6b.pdf#injured mazzogran 50 mg "The Versace brand has an enormous potential. Our advisorsare selecting an investor that will buy a minority stake througha capital hike. We are not selling. Being small is neither goodnor convenient. We must grow," she was quoted as saying byItalian business daily Il Sole 24 Ore.
    http://mylifeismymessage.net/cheap-trendy-shirts-for-juniors-9bb3.pdf#guess trend micro mobile security personal edition activation key It is more common in whites and those of Jewish descent. It is important to receive treatment for ulcerative colitis. If left untreated, it can increase the risk of more serious complications in the long run.

  • Albert Albert commented on Feb 25, 2018 Comment Link

    Stolen credit card http://peepgamecomix.com/buy-vigora-uk-7f64.pdf vigora hundred
    Larry Platt, a partner at K&L Gates law firm in Washington, said the financial services industry has been acting under the assumption that the bureau's rules would stand, so it would not be rattled by Cordray's confirmation.
    http://mylifeismymessage.net/viagra-online-bestellen-test-9bb3.pdf viagra brez recepta cena Last summer, satellite operator DirecTV's 20 millioncustomers were unable to receive Viacom's cablenetworks, including Nickelodeon and MTV, for 10 days after thosecompanies failed to strike a new deal.
    http://peepgamecomix.com/para-que-se-usa-ciprofloxacin-500-mg-7f64.pdf ciprofloxacino 500 mg uso veterinario Yahoo also shared details of Alibaba's first-quarter performance. The company founded by English schoolteacher Jack Ma increased revenue 71 percent to $1.4 billion in the quarter and almost tripled net income, to $669 million.
    http://www.prioritydesigns.com/buy-priligy-30mg-f690.pdf priligy online uk This large surge pushed way more water onto streets than might be expected in Manhattan, for example. The peak water level (the surge plus the tide) at the Battery, Manhattan's southern tip, was 14 feet (4.28 meters) above the average low tide level, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration figures cited in the paper.
    http://proteo.hu/clindamycin-used-to-treat-sore-throat-d6d3.pdf clindamycin hcl 450 mg
    "The meeting meant an awful lot to myself and to my family because we now have an element of closure. It doesnt bring us whole closure, but it does bring us about 90% of the closure were looking for.

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter the (*) required information where indicated. HTML code is not allowed.