Ouya! E-Sports!

posted in: Game News 0

Ouya company is up for sale

Remember the Ouya? I do. It was such a hot Kickstarter with the promise of cheap quality games. Instead of spending $79.99 for Call of Duty: Black Ops III, I could have discovered other quality games for a small fraction of the price.

It was such a non-story for me that I didn’t even bother sharing it on this site. I didn’t buy it.

I didn’t buy their promise or their pitch. The economy of it all just didn’t make sense for me. Why would anyone create a game specifically designed around the controller when there were millions of touch screen Android devices? What was stopping this machine from being hacked and have all the games pirated to hell and back? What if I did enjoy Call of Duty titles? Where can I find that experience in the Android space?

They promoted the use of emulators early on before people accused them of advocating piracy but that’s what the Ouya is popular for now. It’s a cheap way to play Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis and other older titles on your HDTV.

E-Sports on ESPN

E-Sports is a terrible term; let’s just call it what it is: competitive gaming.

I’m not fond of watching competitive games. I won’t get into the reasons why but I will advocate for showing competitive game competitions on ESPN. They’re not above it. They’ve shown poker, spelling bees and other competitions on their many channels already. I’m glad someone up in ESPN’s programming team is trying new things.

The negative reactions from people were to be expected and the same goes with the negative reactions to those negative reactions. I just wish the gaming press weren’t so touchy about it. Be the bigger man.

Google I/O? More like Snoozer I/O, amirite?

posted in: Technology News 0

google-logoBoth Apple’s WWDC and Google I/O are developer conferences but the latter is significantly more boring to the consumer. I felt Apple did an admirable job selling the future of iOS. Google? They need some work.

The features of Android L sound interesting but you wouldn’t be able to tell from their simple website. I would love for them to expand and detail each of those features. Apple goes gaga over the simplest features which is ridiculous at times but I feel Google should borrow a few things from Apple’s playbook.

As for those Google Android L watches? The LG and Samsung watches look too bulky. The Moto 360 looks more appealing with its traditional circular face but it too looks bulky. I’m very curious what Apple’s offering will look like. If it’s anything like these Android offerings, it’ll be a while before you see me wear one of those monstrosities.

Apple paid for PvZ2 timed exclusivity?

posted in: Game News 0

ea-logo.pngElectronic Art’s and Popcap’s Plants vs. Zombies 2 made its North American debut on iOS a month or so ago. It launched with a bit of a fervour over its F2P implementation, managed to rack up over 25 million downloads under two weeks and that’s about it. Barely anyone questioned why there wasn’t any other version yet, we all assumed it would arrive later in due time.

I assumed the delay was to assure the game was compatible across as many Android devices as possible, I didn’t even think of the possibility of moneyhatting.

Well it turns out Electronic Arts was paid a “truckload of money” by Apple. This would be the first significant example of timed exclusivity by way of financial compensation in the mobile space.

Apple — of course — denies such allegations but Electronic Arts has no reason to lie about such things. A “truckload of money” maybe an over simplification of “marketing agreement” but the fact of the matter is, Apple is taking games on its platforms extremely seriously.

The “natural” delay that existed between iOS and Android releases of games and apps is dwindling. As tools and middleware improve, the only thing to stop or delay an app from appearing on a competitor’s platform is financial compensation. And if you were a platform holder who was looking to keep a platform as attractive as possible, worthwhile exclusives are one way to achieve that. And selecting the sequel to one of the most beloved mobile games like Plants vs Zombies isn’t a bad place to start.

Now if only we could get a quantifiable definition of “truckload”.

P.S – I should write up a review for Plants vs Zombies 2.

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