Corrupt the World – Vidjagame Apocalypse 308

With GDC in full swing this week, the core VGA cast assembles for a look at games that let you make their worlds visibly worse, twisting the landscape through your own misdeeds, apathy, or sheer force of personality. We then spend a lot of time talking about Google’s Stadia announcement, Cadence of Hyrule, the Oculus Rift S, and your favorite videogame re-creations of real-world landmarks.

Question of the Week: What’s your take on game streaming, the way Google/Stadia presented it? Is it something you’re interested in? What’s been your experience with other game-streaming services?


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Theme song by Matthew Joseph Payne. Break song is Rats by Ghost. Haunting and beautiful New Releases Theme by David B. Cooper.


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11 thoughts on “Corrupt the World – Vidjagame Apocalypse 308

  1. It’s been said many times, and so obvious many times. Streaming is the future, and it’s now if you look at other countries. But the United States with its terrible internet, weren’t you guys complaining about Comcast when the Tyler Wilde Memorial Studio was in San Francisco (tech capital of the country)? So, I don’t know why Google and Walmart are hellbent on releasing such a service here in America when any European Union country would be more receptive.

  2. I think streaming services for games are a bad idea. Most don’t have the connection good enough to make itwork . Personally could never get good enough internet for it to work with only version I have tried in the past, Playstation Now. I prefer to own the actual games (or at least be able to download them to your system like Game Pass).

  3. QotW: I don’t have faith in game streaming, hell I barely have faith in digital only (remember when that was touted as the future?). Between not every area having access to high speed, and the ludicrous data caps the major ISPs impose, streaming is destined to fail. I thought Google’s GDC reveal was laughable at best, they’ll abandon this project sooner than later, like they do many of their projects. Remember Google+? Buzz? Video? Reader? Google’s basically the Fox of tech with all the shit they try then cancel. Anyway, streaming won’t be viable until we get our shit straight and the damn ISPs lift the caps at a reasonable price (haha, like they would ever do that).

    1. Matt, you failed to mention it’s Contra (arcade). So there’s still speculation if we wil get Contra (NES). It’s never been released digitally. The last time it’s been available was as a bonus in the DS Contra 4

  4. I can barely get remote play to work on my vita in the same room. Forget this noise

  5. renting is not the same as streaming
    videogame licenses specifically state that taking their game and charging people for pay for play will end with an angry letter from a lawyer, paying for temporary access to a copy of the game and paying for someone running the actual software are 2 different things and there are game licenses that specifically state “we will sue the fuck out of you if you set up a console with a tv and start charging people $10 an hour to play our game without our permission”

    Streaming undoubtedly is the future of distribution (doing it in 4k is dumb to me, I dont see the advantage of spending that much more in resources over slightly better 1280p), and google is probably going to dump it in a few years like everything else google tries like google+ or google glass, the question is whether or not game developers actually utilize this to their advantage to drive down the cost of access, actual development and advertisement, active playtesting data and active development is a thousand times easier and a thousand times cheaper with something like this, but knowing AAA studios behavior they will most likely start turning this into a multi billion dollar trashfire that somehow hemorrhages profitability and spend all its time making it more expensive and more of a pain in the ass than dealing with a CD that can get scratched or downloding 100 gb files

    “virgin pods” isnt a thing but it needs to be


    Anyway enough about me QOTW:
    Personally I’d be really excited about the idea of stream based gaming IF good internet access becomes something totally nation wide, coming from experience I currently live in a house that isn’t even serviceable at all for internet so the most I can do is run off my 15gb of hot spot on my phone and the speeds don’t even make that worth it (mainly for keeping my ps4 updated). The thought of the industry switching entirely to a stream based digital only platform is literally a nightmare to gamers in areas such as mine

  7. I watched a whole 100% stealth / 100% non-lethal Dishonored walkthrough recently, and I don’t think knocking people out raises your chaos level, because this guy definitely chokes plenty of guards. But yeah, letting the environment (water, rats, walls of light, etc.) kill people for you does count at killing them.

    I can relate to Chris not being able to stick with this game. I love the world building, I love watching people play it, but I find it frustrating to play myself. I *want* to be stealthy, but the first person perspective and lack of mini map make it really hard for a casual-ish gamer such as myself to stay unseen for long (unlike in Assassin’s Creed, where I could hide like a boss). Maybe I would enjoy it more if embraced the “brutal murderer” playstyle from the beginning.

  8. Surprised you guys didn’t go into GTA San Andreas and its massive riot segment in Lost Santos! I would have included it because CJ’s actions (your actions) get Tenpenny off the hook, which sparks the riots.

    Quick story, I was too young to know about the ’92 LA Riots when I played San Andreas, so I didn’t know it was based off real events. One day when I was playing it on my original Xbox, my grandfather walked in and told him about it. That’s when he told me the story of when he first settled in South Central LA as an immigrant: after the riots and before the OJ Simpson trial.

    Really drove home the “rags to slightly better rags” theme.

    I know it wasn’t the QotW, but I had to share. Great podcast!

  9. I think streaming games is a lot more of a complicated discussion than streaming movie/tv. People use netflix/streaming services mostly because cable is too expensive and ads are annoying. I also think movies are more of a disposable entertainment source than games are.

    Most people who aren’t movie collectors only really buy movies they love or movies they constantly rewatch and most movies are pretty short compared to modern games (not to mention way cheaper) so people are more prone to just checking them out on a whim. Games require a lot more investment. They usually take several to dozens of hours to beat so people generally don’t have time to consume them in one setting or with the frequency they do movies and tv shows. You can’t sit down and finish a game while you’re eating dinner. This time issue also makes feeling like you’re getting your money’s worth out of a paid subscription a lot harder and in a world where everyone’s trying to get you to pay for another subscription, value is very important.

    Apart from all that there’s a sort of collector’s vibe built into the hobby too. Some people will trade in all their old games and put that towards the newest releases that catch their eye but there are plenty of other people who don’t. I also don’t think it’d be as profitable. The industry makes tons of money off preorders and selling big special edition versions with art books, collectibles, soundtracks, etc. (admittedly of sometimes dubious quality) and streaming gets rid of all that. Even if you target the PC crowd, the one part of the gaming market where digital distribution actually killed physical distribution like everyone said that it would, you lose mod support and to a lot of people that’s a huge deal breaker. Digital distribution makes up a big chunk of gaming sales but I think that has more to do with the convenience of not having to go to a store than a preference of owning physical copies over digital ones (except for maybe portable gaming where having all your games on your console is perhaps preferable). The only reason I think physical games on PC went away was because of steam and the fact that pc gaming always had a long history of piracy and filesharing baked into the culture of it in a way that console gaming just didn’t have.

    I think there’s a space for game streaming services to exist (I mean people somewhere out there someone’s keeping gamefly in business) but I don’t see it replacing physical games on console. I imagine streaming could find better success in places like Korea, China, or Japan where personal living space is at a premium and minimizing clutter is huge. Korean internet is also way faster than ours so they’re better posed to take advantage of it than America is. A bit of lag might not matter in some games, but that’s a big problem for a lot of online games (especially shooters or RTS titles) and our internet just isn’t up to snuff. You might get good enough speeds for streaming games in big cities but if you live out in the country or if you have to worry about data caps? Forget about it. I admire that google’s making the attempt, but I think it’s gonna fall flat.

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