Beginning of the Last?

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The Last Version of Windows

Windows 10 will be the last version of Windows and I’m not surprised. Apple has been stuck on OS X for well over a decade and have been iterating and refining that version over time. Microsoft is just finally getting on board with the whole “operating system as a service” thing.

Now instead of waiting for tentpole releases in 3 years time, Microsoft will roll out updates to functionality on a regular basis. From a consumer perspective, it’ll be nice knowing that Windows Updates will now be more than just a security updates and bug fixes.

But what about for enterprise clients? Giant IT departments won’t be as keen on regular functionality updates. Will Microsoft utilize a different release schedule? Will it be up to IT departments to decide which updates to install? Linux distributions have frequent updates as well but they usually have a long term support branch that favors stability. It will be interesting to see how Microsoft handles all of this.

Another Assassin’s Creed Unveiled

Unsurprisingly, there’s another Assassin’s Creed game coming this year. This time Ubisoft is continuing the hot trend and bringing us to Victorian London. Unlike Windows, this doesn’t seem like it’s going to end any time soon and I doubt I’ll be picking one up any time soon either.

I skimmed through the 9 minute walkthrough but didn’t see anything of note. It looks gorgeous and I enjoy the cutscenes but the gameplay sends a shudder through me like the thought of eating a cockroach.

 

Savestate: Assassin’s Sales

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Assassin's Creed Unity Bug

Ubisoft compensates for Assassin’s Creed: Unity

It may have landed on fire and smelling of fecal matter but I have to give a tiny bit of credit to Ubisoft for trying to make amends. However, the cynical side of me wonders why anyone would want to play more of a game that they dislike.

I think season pass owners would have preferred the option for a full refund. Trading a $30 season pass for the likes of Far Cry 4 is a great deal but what if you’re not a fan of Far Cry 4 or the rest of the offered titles? Or what happens if you already own all those titles?

It’s an effort but not as thoughtful as it could have been.

Re: Black Friday 2014

The sales have begun early on Thursday which meant I was spending a fair bit of time picking, posting and considering deals.

It’s been crazy this year and not because of any jaw dropping deals. So far, it’s just been a lot of decent deals.

Thought of the Week

Where would Manchester City be without Sergio Aguero?

Savestate: AAA Sky Falls

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Assassin's Creed Unity Glitch

AAA games faltering

DRIVECLUB, Halo: Master Chief Collection and Assassin’s Creed: Unity are still suffering from technical issues. They have networking issues, graphical glitches, performance drops and sometimes a combination of all the above. And these are just the high profile titles that have severe issues. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare has its own controversy over dedicated servers but it’s being overshadowed.

Instead of dwelling on what is happening, I want to know why this is happening. The easy answer is to blame aggressive publishers that want to make holidays. But we’ve seen plenty of publishers make those timelines in the past.

What’s changed for this year?

Although we’re technically a year into the newest generation of consoles, we’re still not out of the woods yet with regards to console transition issues. Seven years ago, the first Assassin’s Creed debuted to horrible framerate issues and bugs as well.

In the case of DRIVECLUB, you can chalk this up to inexperience with networking. For the folks at 343 Industries, I can’t imagine it’s easy to get four titles humming along nicely (even if they’re remasters).

These are just excuses that I’m making up for these developers. They’re not going to tell us why these games are broken but they’ll continue to ask for forgiveness and patience while you wait.

Consumers are paying money for working products and if they can’t deliver a working product within the launch window, they should be eligible for refunds. It might be tough to convince a retailer to take back an opened game, but those who’ve purchased titles from Sony or Microsoft’s digital stores should receive a refund if they so desire.

Also, thank goodness for built-in recording and screenshot functionality.

Mario Kart 8 DLC Pack #1

Over at Nintendo’s little island of fun awaits Mario Kart 8’s first DLC pack. I bought it the dual pack and look forward to trying the new content. I just don’t know if it’s going to be sooner or later.

Random Thought of the Week

I’m addicted to Florida Natural Fruit Snacks.

Savestate: Driving Parity

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Assassin's Creed Unity

Re: DRIVECLUB Reviews

Is anyone surprised by the relatively lukewarm reception to DRIVECLUB? Outside of visuals, it didn’t look particularly compelling. Simulation fans aren’t pleased with the decision to stick to 30FPS and it didn’t look crazy enough for the arcade racing aficionados. If they were going to straddle the line of simulation and arcade racing like Project Gotham Racing, they didn’t nail the style or personality.

The PlayStation Plus version of the game was delayed because paying customers cannot even get online without issues. It’s understandable but perhaps they should have delayed it in the first place.

I cannot wait for this console generation to pick up speed and more games to release because if this were year three or four of the generation, all this fervor over DRIVECLUB and Destiny would be washed away by day two of launch.

Re: Assassin’s Creed: Unity Parity

“We decided to lock them at the same specs to avoid all the debates and stuff”

Senior Producer Vincent Pontbriand to VideoGamer.com

There’s nothing inherently wrong with parity. It’s nice to know that developers will try to get all versions of a game to run at a particular specification. But when a developer says that they’re forcing parity to “avoid all the debates and stuff” and co-marketting dollars shifted from one manufacturer to another, there’s a whiff of bullshit that’s tough to ignore. We don’t know if the PlayStation 4 needed to run at 900p30 as well but I do know if there was a technical reason, they shouldn’t have said otherwise.

We’re in a unique situation here with this console generation. The lead platform is usually the console with the largest install base and slightly weaker hardware. The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 2 were the usual lead platforms during the last two generations. The PlayStation 4 broke that pattern. It’s a step more powerful than the Xbox One and not in an obscure way like with the PlayStation 3 and its Cell.

With all the games running better on the PlayStation 4 already and the fact that it has superior hardware, I don’t blame people for questioning Ubisoft’s motives.

Random Thought

Tenga Eggs aren’t what I thought they were.

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