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Warner Bros. Halts Sales of AAA Batman PC Game Over Technical Problems 223

An anonymous reader writes: The Batman: Arkham series of video games has been quite popular over the past several years. But when the most recent iteration, Batman: Arkham Knight, was released a couple days ago, users who bought the PC version of the game found it suffered from crippling performance issues. Now, publisher Warner Bros. made an official statement in the community forums saying they were discontinuing sales of the PC version until quality issues can be sorted out. Gamers and journalists are using it as a rallying point to encourage people to stop preordering games, as it rewards studios for releasing broken content.
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Warner Bros. Halts Sales of AAA Batman PC Game Over Technical Problems

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  • Pre-ordering (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ArcadeMan ( 2766669 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:32AM (#49985225)

    Pre-ordering can be a bad thing because it allows big studios to release low-quality games, but at the same time it can be a good thing because it does help indies and small studios to pay for the development of their games.

    There's only one game that's on my list right now: Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime [asteroidbase.com]

    • Re:Pre-ordering (Score:5, Insightful)

      by TheCarp ( 96830 ) <sjc@nOsPAm.carpanet.net> on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:48AM (#49985371) Homepage

      Its funny but people who wait are the real winners. Wait until after the game is out and hits a sale. You get the game at a cheaper price AND you get the bug fixes that came out since then. The only thing it cost you, was waiting to play it a bit, and you get a better product for less. How is that not winning?

      But, as you say, with Indie games, small studios.... its a different story. Hell, I will pay for early access if I like a game, I don't even mind that its buggy because I know I chose that AND I know I am supporting an indie developer who might not otherwise even be able to produce the game.

      The big boys who can afford advertising campaigns and multiple major releases per year? Feel free to hold them to a high standard, they should be setting the standard not be rewarded resting on their laurels.

      • Winners? Pre-Ordering is almost always bad, but the one case where I view it as usually necessary is when I want a physical copy of a game that is in limited release. Nearly all NIS and Gust games are in limited release. Which isn't surprising because they have a small but dedicated fan base. If I wait and don't show up and get one of those limited copies I'll end up having to travel 100 miles to get a copy because I waited for the price drops. Buy digital will be your next claim, but the last time I missed
        • Why do you care about having a physical copy?
          • by Krojack ( 575051 )

            Collector's limited edition maybe?

            There are also those that feel like they may lose their game unless they have a physical copy. Personally I feel like companies that offer digital copies of anything should be required to always have a copy of what you paid for available for as long as you are alive. They should also never have the right to take it away. It's not like Blizzard has a right to come into my home and take back the Warcraft 2 install CDs I have after all.

          • Title was no longer available for digital purchase

            Why do you care about having a physical copy?

            Answered before you asked. In some cases, sellers of downloadable works have in the past ended redownload privileges even to paying customers without compensating them. Look at all the PlaysForSure music stores, for instance.

            Second, a lot of physical stores still sell physical copies cheaper than Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony, or Valve sells the downloadable version. It's like Amazon, where some print books are cheaper than the Kindle edition [andrewhy.de].

          • Cheaper, and the digital version of the Atleir series is spotty at best. I also like the Music tracks on the limited editions when they are available. Also I believe in the Right of First Sale, and like to lend my brothers the games when I'm done if they're interested. Can't really do that with digital legally, but with the physical copy I can legally sell, lend, or give away if I don't like it. Kinda stuck with it if the game is shown to be utter nonsense if it takes over two hours on steam to figure that
          • by awing0 ( 545366 )
            I regularly borrow, lend and trade games with real life friends in meat space.
          • You're new at this, right? Just imagine what happens if you do not have internet connection available at all times or the server where is the downloadable content goes down. Can you see now why it is necessary to have physical copies?
          • It depends on the game I think. If there's DRM, then there's no point, if the game maker discontinues the game then you're out of luck. But I have lots of older CDs and DVDs from companies long out of business and I can still install and replay them. A lot of gamers don't care about this, especially younger ones, since they don't understand about playing games when they're no longer fashionable.

            Also, physical games are cheaper much of the time! It seems illogical, but game publishers are loathe to reduc

      • How is that not winning?

        You're enabling awful business practices by publishers to push shit out the door.

        The only two games I'm seriously looking forward to are Metal Gear Solid V The Phantom Pain and Street Fighter V.

        Both of which I'm guessing won't have these problems. I don't know why Japanese devs aren't having these problems but western ones are.

        • The Japanese still have this concept of "pride" which seems rare in the West.

          • I have noticed this as well. The culture of releasing proper, polished products seems to be still alive in Japan.
          • Much of the time this is not under the control of the game developer. Instead there's usually a game publisher pushing on the studio to release on time or else. The devs want to create a great game, the executives however want things released on time so that they can lay off the staff and move on. This is why EA competes with Comcast to be the most hated company.

        • How is that not winning?

          You're enabling awful business practices by publishers to push shit out the door.

          The only two games I'm seriously looking forward to are Metal Gear Solid V The Phantom Pain and Street Fighter V.

          Both of which I'm guessing won't have these problems. I don't know why Japanese devs aren't having these problems but western ones are.

          I'm looking forward to Fallout 4 and Uncharted A Thief's End.

          I've enjoyed the Fallout series plus this one is set in Boston, the area where I live. Pre-ordering is the only way that you can get special editions (i.e. the Pip-Boy edition being released this week). That being said, the Fallout games tend to have a lot of bugs on first release. Whether this is related to pre-ordering or not is still up in the air. I agree that there is likely more business pressure to release a game on time, no matter wha

          • by Cederic ( 9623 )

            Pre-ordering is the only way that you can get special editions (i.e. the Pip-Boy edition being released this week).

            If it's a physical special edition with a limited run of trinkets, statues or books that you want, sure.

            If it's a digital special edition with in-game artefacts designed to drive pre-sales and segment the player base, fuck you for supporting that piece of shit business model.

          • The pip-boy edition seems a bit iffy to me. There's a chance there will be some left over, but if not then that saves me $60 on a flimsy piece of plastic. The exclusive bobble heads from FO3 pre-order are available in the Bethesda store now I think (maybe not the lunchbox).

            I think the phone+pipboy won't work so well in practice. Ie, the phone turns off after being idle, you want to check your inventory so you have to power it on again, enter your PIN to unlock it (many companies require this if you use y

      • Perhaps the controversy is related to where to set the dividing line between "indie" and "big boys". If a studio is composed of veterans of the "big boys", is it indie? Or how much annual revenue makes a studio "big boys"?

        • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

          If they have access to venture capital or stock market funding, they're the big boys. The only reason for pre-ordering is to provide capital for the little guys who can't get it from somewhere else.

      • I typically wait until the Steam Black Friday sale to pick up old games for under $5 each.
      • That's a good plan for most games. Just like binging on entire seasons of TV shows on Netflix where you get to skip commercials and don't have to wait a week to see how a cliffhanger resolves.

        The downside is you aren't part of the conversation at the time of release. Like following sports, there is social currency value in playing at release time. For popular multi-player titles, waiting means you might miss out on the peak crowds, and the fun of discovering things on your own before all the walk-throughs

        • by TheCarp ( 96830 )

          All true, really....its a complicated relationship. Most people can only afford to buy so many full priced games. Hell, look at steam's own statistics on how many games bought on sale are even downloaded and played. Its funny what people value.

          I have pre-ordered. I need turn my head about 5 degrees from this screen to see a "God of War" special edition plastic molded chachky box (my wife's actually, but I have a some collectors edition city of heros swag in a box somewhere).... and over time just, come to v

        • by Cederic ( 9623 )

          Your friends may have moved on just as you're getting into a game and looking for a group.

          My friends are roughly my age, and we all earn enough to play new games without worrying about the cost.

          We're all also sensible enough to recognise that the cost isn't justified, so we're all running several months to several years behind the curve, and tend to migrate to the same games at about the same time.

          Sucks for online multiplayer games, works beautifully for co-op, isn't terribly relevant for single-player games. But we're all too old and slow for online FPS anyway.

          • by TheCarp ( 96830 )

            > My friends are roughly my age, and we all earn enough to play new games without worrying about the cost.
            > We're all also sensible enough to recognise that the cost isn't justified

            Yup. I don't need to save up for games, I can easily afford them at full price or pre-order. I just see it as a waste, especially when I look at how many games I bought and played for single digit hours.

            > Sucks for online multiplayer games, works beautifully for co-op, isn't terribly relevant for single-player games. But

            • by Cederic ( 9623 )

              I used to play all the battlefields that way, so not a massive difference for me.

              What I can't do now is play UT and be the first to react, aim and pull the trigger.

    • Bah, these indie games really make me throw my guts out. And my girlfriend hates them as well.

      Only Tad-like videos with "funny" Garageband background music are worse...

      I guess I'm a bit cranky today. >:[

    • The reason I pre order all games is due to the pre order DLC and bonuses, which I then promptly sell on eBay omn launch day for $10 or $15, making the game cost less. Hell, sometimes the sale of the pre order bonuses covers the entire cost of the game.

    • It's generally a poor idea to pre-order because you have no idea what the game will really be like. Even a fan of a series of games should wait to learn more details first. It locks you into one vendor for example, or locks you into a higher price than may exist later, and so forth. I'm annoyed that I have one game from Steam that I could have gotten cheaper and easier to use from GOG, because I didn't realize it would be available elsewhere.

      It seems very strange when most games are supplied digitally on

  • by waspleg ( 316038 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:34AM (#49985229) Journal

    The rage on Steam over this is truly epic. If you're a fan of schadenfreude check out the forums for it. People have blamed everyone but the Pope thus far.

    • ID Software's Rage was an epic fail on my Radeon 7970 video card, the opening gameplay chugging at 2fps. I got the game three years after it came out at a Steam Black Friday sale for $2.50, and ID still haven't fixed there AMD support (or lack thereof) for this video card. I wasn't too upset that I couldn't play the game on a video card that exceeded the minimum specs for the price I paid. (I would be royally pissed if I got the game at $60 and it didn't work.) This year I got a Nvidia 720 video card and th
    • by gweihir ( 88907 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @12:27PM (#49986205)

      I preordered on steam, I played for an hour, I asked for and got a full refund. Steam may have something to do with this move by WB.

  • by sinij ( 911942 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:36AM (#49985253)
    Last I read, only 30-something percent of kickstarter projects deliver anything. Now, pre-ordering is being exploited to a much larger degree. Assassin's Creed, Batman... these are not small indy titles. Meanwhile these studios exploiting developers in a sweatshop-like conditions (e.g. EA spouse) to unprecedented degree.

    If this was clothing company - you'd have people boycotting the brand. Why this case should be any different?
    • by Paco103 ( 758133 )

      I would say there's one BIG difference.
      The employee working at EA is doing so for a considerable salary. His wife may not feel the money is worth his sacrifices (and I agree, but to each their own). Because of that, he has a choice, and can easily move to a different job, even if he does have to take a pay cut, and have a good quality of life.

      The employee at the clothing company may be 12, may be a single mother with no skills, etc, and the job is held over them as a means of survival. They may NOT have a c

      • by sinij ( 911942 )
        This is faulty logic. So you are saying that job is not held over US tech worker in the same way? Sure, thanks to social programs maintained by the government it is unlikely that EA spouses' children would go hungry, but other than that the consequences of job loss are comparable.

        You work crazy hours while getting set non-market wage is not any different if your are cranking fake purses somewhere in Asia or fake content (DLC) somewhere in US.
    • by gweihir ( 88907 )

      Kickstarter for games usually breaks even at about 50% delivery of something good. Anybody smart understands that. I have been lucky so far and got 80% with the missing 20% still possible successes. To expect 100% on something like Kickstarter is pure insanity. And there is a reason you only pay something like 50% of what a finished game costs (where you still could be buying a lemon).

      The difference is that Kickstarter allows successful creation of good games that would never have found publishers. Of cours

      • Did you buy into clang?

        https://www.kickstarter.com/pr... [kickstarter.com]

        When Stevenson failed to deliver, he started paying our refunds. I was so shocked, I refused to apply for one as a support to him for doing the right thing.

        • by gweihir ( 88907 )

          I did not. But this shows one thing: On Kickstarter, reputation is everything. That means everyone going to kickstarter with a good reputation (like Brian Fargo or Neal Stephenson) will want to make damned sure said reputation stays intact even with a failed project.

          I really think kickstarter is the future for anybody that wants quality, as in story, gameplay, fun. And if there is the occasional failure, I will not hold that against the makers _if_ they can either provide a good explanation or refund. That

  • Broken Content (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sixsixtysix ( 1110135 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:37AM (#49985267)
    Anyone else notice that since the last generation of consoles got the ability to patch games, they've been buggier upon release?
    • I dnt'o rlaely ees wyh yud'o yas tsogmehin kiel tath.

      Sent from my Xbox One.

    • Re:Broken Content (Score:5, Insightful)

      by maugle ( 1369813 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:50AM (#49985409)
      Yep, back before consoles could be expected to have local storage and a persistent Internet connection, the inability to patch games after release made QA a critically important part of development. Now the balance has shifted to rushing the game out ASAP, and only devoting resources to fixing bugs if the early buyers complain loudly enough to dissuade other potential customers.

      Though I prefer the way Yahtzee put it: "You couldn't get away with releasing a buggy game in the cartridge and cassette days; you'd be trampled under the company Brontosaurus."
      • Yahtzee is one of the few people in the gaming press that I agree with on most things.
      • It also helps that games in the cartridge days were a LOT smaller and less complex than games today (by several orders of magnitude). I imagine that doing QA on a 64k game, with a staff of three developers, was a shit-ton lot easier than trying to do QA on a 50GB open-world title spanning an area of hundreds of square miles, with thousands and thousands of NPC's and sidequests, items, and complex combat and crafting systems.

        So yeah. Super Mario Brothers 3 is easy enough to QA so you can release a perfect ga

        • So yeah. Super Mario Brothers 3 is easy enough to QA so you can release a perfect game.

          Super Mario Bros. was 40K but still shipped with the minus world glitch. You'd be surprised at how many glitches Nintendo left in Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros. 3. Read this thread [nesdev.com] about a hack of Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros. 2: For Super Players (an initially Japan-only mission pack sequel to SMB1 that uses the SMB1 engine) that removes well over a dozen glitches in the game, including many depicted in this montage [youtube.com].

    • Re:Broken Content (Score:4, Informative)

      by Tukz ( 664339 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @11:06AM (#49985527) Journal

      Console version is fine actually, it's the crappy PC Ports that's suffering.

      • Which is unforgivable since consoles are PCs are more alike than ever. It should be much easier in this generation to port between systems
      • yeah, for this game, but console games, in general, have been rushed with more bugs than in the era of non-patchableness.
    • Yes, and I don't care for that one bit. Though with previous consoles, PC Gamer "masterrace" types claimed that the ability to patch was an advantage.

      It can be, but it doesn't turn out that way due to laziness or being rushed.

  • And here everyone was praising the new console's hardware platform being more PC like as a good thing. We all thought it was going to make porting these made for console games so much easier. Guess we didn't account for laziness, incompetence and being cheap.
  • is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome.
    Yet, folks continue to pre-order then act all shocked and offended when the title is buggy and near unplayable upon release. :|

    I don't get it. What goes through the heads of folks who keep pre-ordering this crap ? " No nonononono. . . THIS time will be different. Really ! "
    I wonder if anyone who actually pre-ordered this thing would realize their being the poster child of naivete the industry craves so much.

  • by RogueyWon ( 735973 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @10:56AM (#49985459) Journal

    I pre-ordered this on Steam a couple of days before launch. As of right now, it is sat on 1h50m playtime and I'm not touching it again until either we have news on when a major patch is expected or we start to get close to two weeks after release.


    Because of Steam's new refund policy. If you have less than 2 hours playtime on a game and it is less than 2 weeks since release (or less than 2 weeks since your purchase, if you purchased it post-release), you are eligible for a refund. The game in its current state is a very sorry sight indeed.

    My personal experiences with it haven't been as bad as some. I have an i7 3820 @ 3.66ghz, an Nvidia 980 and 16gb of nice fast RAM. I also, crucially, have a 500gb SSD that I use for my OS and for drive speed sensitive games (as well as some big old traditional drives for everything else). Running from the SSD and with an .ini tweak to remove the 30fps cap (yes, a 30fps cap in a PC game in this day and age), I can manage a not-terrible level of performance. Framerates with all settings maxed in 1080p flicker between 35 fps and 70 fps, depending on what's happening on screen, though the wide variations do produce some ugly artefacts.

    When I first installed the game to one of my traditional drives, performance was appalling. While framerates when stood still doing nothing were the same, taking almost any action in-game, from moving around to entering a vehicle or changing areas, would produce large framerate drops, hideous stuttering, broken textures and texture pop-in. This game has some serious issues with data streaming from storage drives.

    The game is also ugly to look at. Ok, ok, I'm being a bit harsh there. As a bare-bones PC port of a late-cycle 360 or PS3 game, it would have looked ok. But compared with PC versions of recent efforts like Shadows of Mordor, Grand Theft Auto 5 and The Witcher 3, this looks terrible. Bear in mind that all of the above run at higher and steadier framerates with all settings maxed on my PC. In Arkham Knight, NPCs movements are repetitive and robotic, textures are low-resolution (the game will only allow "low" or "medium" detail textures to be selected, implying higher detail textures were removed at the last moment) and basic visual effects from the console versions are missing.

    My experiences put me at the better end of the scale. I have a powerful PC with a single-Nvidia-GPU setup. Weaker PCs, or even more powerful PCs with multi-GPU setups or AMD cards seem to have things much worse. I've only experienced one crash to desktop - but that's as many crashes in under 2 hours of play as I've experienced in almost 30 hours of play in The Witcher 3.

    A few wider points about this; while this game is particularly brutal in terms of its drive speed requirements, it is part of a broader picture that drive speed is starting to matter as much as CPU and GPU speed for PC gamers in terms of actual in-game performance (rather than just load-times). Watch_Dogs, Far Cry 4 and Dragon Age: Inquisition all suffered from in-game stuttering issues when running from a traditional drive - though not to anything like the same extent as Arkham Knight. An SSD large enough for games as well as the OS is becoming non-optional for serious PC gamers.

    Second, this is the first real stress-test of Steam's refund system. To their credit, Valve seem to be honouring Arkham Knight refund requests without any qualms. And it's surely no coincidence that the first "broken" PC port to go out after the refund system was introduced has led to such a dramatic reaction by the publisher.

    • by gweihir ( 88907 )

      I pre-ordered months ago, but got a full refund at 1.5h played, no questions asked.

      • Yes, pre-orders are refundable up to 2 weeks after launch day. The clock doesn't start ticking when you place your pre-order.

        • by gweihir ( 88907 )

          Good to know, thanks! That makes pre-ordering much more sensible on Steam. I have to admit that I only pre-ordered in a moment of weakness.

  • by MobyDisk ( 75490 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @11:08AM (#49985543) Homepage

    The other Batman games suffered major issues at launch too. For example, Batman: Arkham Origins was impossible to complete at launch due to a bug. There was a river where the grapple would never connect so you couldn't get across. It took several patches before it worked reliably for everyone.

    • yes but now we have the refund system and that's what happened people who got this broken pc release got to test steams refund. so when they had to do mass refunds there like oops maybe we should have fixed this crap before release. all i got to say is good.
  • Sure I understand preordering once - but when that game doesn't meet the hype (and they never do), why would you do that again?

    • yea preordering digital content what are they going to do sell out lol.
    • A few places that sell downloads in the UK were offering the game for around £18 if you pre-ordered. Considering the RRP is £39.99. The prices then shoot up post launch.

      The price is not going to get that low again for 6 months or so, so pre-ordering isn't that dumb.
  • So, um, guys? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @11:43AM (#49985805) Journal
    Does anyone have some kind of coherent explanation, aside from Norton Antivirus, as to how you would (on AAA budget, handling a popular franchise that is also the video game presence of a very popular character) manage to release a game on both XBone and PS4; but have it suffer crippling performance issues on the PC, reported by both AMD and Nvidia users?

    I realize that PCs are quirky beasts; but they are quirky beasts architecturally very similar to(typically more powerful than, for any vaguely serious gaming system) both contemporary consoles, and even some software/dev overlap with the Xbox; and somehow other people have managed to get a game to release and have it either be horribly broken everywhere, mostly working everywhere, or at least horribly broken for 'GCN 1.0 GPUs with drivers before Catalyst 10.x' or some other well defined group of deviants.

    How does this happen?
    • Re:So, um, guys? (Score:5, Informative)

      by rebelwarlock ( 1319465 ) on Thursday June 25, 2015 @12:02PM (#49985959)
      They outsourced the PC port to a group of twelve people and gave them two months. I wish that was a joke.
      • So Warner Brothers either has management that hasn't learned that the only thing more expensive than doing the job correctly is totally fucking it up; or some raving lunatic who thinks that he has finally cracked the miracle of 100% efficient software development?

        That's quite a brain trust. You'd think that they'd be either more bankrupt or smarter by now.
      • yep its laziness and corporate shill deadlines im happy this time it came back to bite them in the ass with steams new policy's.
    • Re:So, um, guys? (Score:4, Informative)

      by CronoCloud ( 590650 ) <cronocloudauron@NOSPam.gmail.com> on Thursday June 25, 2015 @03:59PM (#49988945)

      I realize that PCs are quirky beasts; but they are quirky beasts architecturally very similar to(typically more powerful than, for any vaguely serious gaming system) both contemporary consoles
      How does this happen?

      You are thinking like a PC gamer and thinking about ONLY the CPU and GPU when you compare the PC to the current gen consoles. Machines aren't just CPU's and GPU's, they have internal busses, I/O, RAM. Those matter.

      And when it comes to those things, consoles are still specialized beasts.

      Lets take the PS2. There were PC gamers claiming their GeForce 3 was better, their CPU faster, etc etc. That may have been true, but the PS2 wasn't an ordinary PC, it had specialized RAM and specialized internal busses. It could do things that a PC of that era simply could not do.

      http://archive.arstechnica.com... [arstechnica.com]

      http://archive.arstechnica.com... [arstechnica.com]

      Watch the vector unit demos. They're running entirely on the vector unit in 16K of RAM, no CPU involved.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

      IIRC, somebody came up with a Zlib implementation that ran entirely on a PS2 vector unit.

      The PS3 is similar, fast Rambus RAM, SPU's, and fast internal busses. IIRC somebody smarter than me referred to it as "taking the multiprocessin ideas introduced with the PS2, further"

      The PS4 is more "normal", but still has specialized RAM and internal busses. You simply can't buy a PC with GDDR5 main ram. Imagine if you had a PC with ALL of it's RAM as fast as the RAM on the video card. That would be nice, wouldn't it? But that can't happen, the PC is limited by PCIe.

      The PS4 isn't.

      http://www.gamasutra.com/view/... [gamasutra.com]

      It can move data around in ways a PC simply can not do. It also doesn't have to deal with the problem that is Windows. Windows is a general purpose OS, even when it runs games.

      The PS4 runs BSD, while it is also a general purpose OS, there's no need on the PS4 to keep "desktop computer services" running. The PS4 doesn't have to keep a print spool up, have a java updater constantly running, . It doesn't have to worry about the "needs" of an Office suite, or SMB shares, or Norton/Kaspersky/AVG, or any of the other things a PC does. It runs games. It can do other things as well but it's design focus is on games more than anything else.

      • That's all fine, but then why does performance of a high-end PC shit all over the consoles in every other game released except for this one. Bonus points when you can explain that AND also explain the poor quality graphics of this game compared to other games which appear to run better on both the console and far better on the PC.

        A more likely explanation is that the studio has staffed their engine optimisation department with dyslexics and gave them the wrong manuals.

  • Sorry if I missed the study, but what makes this all because of preorders? I've been playing buggy games for decades, plenty of which I didn't preorder, many of which weren't even expected to be huge hits, why is everyone so sure that preorders are why developers aren't fixing games? I'm not saying they definitely have nothing to do with it, but as someone who preorders a game about once every year or two, I'm genuinely curious what evidence there is that my actions are damaging the games. And for anyone th

    • A very large part of it is companies putting embargos on game reviewers; so while in the past we might have seen a review about a new Batman game coming out that plays like absolute shit and the buyer deciding to wait, now the developers push out extra skins or bonus weapons or whatever it takes to get that first pile of cash to them before people read any reviews. So instead of holding the game back for another couple months for polish, the developers decide "well... good enough I guess" and dump the turd

  • It makes no sense on the PC in any case because the primary point of preordering is to make sure you get a copy on launch. Well, if you're doing a digitial download then you're going to get a copy regardless which is how most PC games work at this point anyway.

    Now for little companies that don't have publishing contracts? Pre-orders are fine. I pre order games from those guys all the time and have so far not been burned once. I know people get burned but I've been lucky.

    I've pre-ordered everything from inex

  • The gaming industry should have to face fines for releasing games this badly coded. And its very clear the gamers are a bunch of cowards, afraid to miss out on a preorder special gun that is no more powerful they any in the game released on opening day. But even still thats not the problem the problem is fix it later created by the whole software industry, Linux included. No one has clean hands IMO for this problem but for gamers as serious as they take themselves to not stick together is ..sad and funny.
  • I clearly remember seeing two days before the release that the PC could be had for $35-$40. Could it be these sellers had inside knowledge and purposely sold this broken product before word got out? If so, wouldn't this be something the Feds could look into?
  • This story wants to be a rallying cry for the sentiment to not pre-order games, but this was, what, the fourth game in the Batman: Arkham series, right? And it looks like it's on UE3 like the others, and it was done by the same studio that did two of the previous three games.

    Pre-ordering can be dangerous, sure, but I think people were reasonable to perhaps assume that this game wouldn't have huge issues, and even if one or more of the previous games had issues surely whatever it was (cape physics?) could have been worked out by now.

    I know things change between games and a $60 purchase is not cheap but telling people they're stupid for pre-ordering the fourth game in a series with most of the same elements in place is like telling people who are at the opening night of a movie that's a sequel to another movie they liked that they're being stupid for not waiting for reviews. Sure, the new movie might suck but is it unreasonable to think it probably won't?

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (10) Sorry, but that's too useful.