My column last Friday was about why I think Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick is bad at his job. It’s one of the longest columns I’ve run, and I could probably say a lot more if I thought it was worthwhile. The company is filled with dysfunction that can be easily observed simply by reading headlines. Which means things most likely look a lot worse inside.
Of course, you can’t mention the man’s name without having people yell the word “greed”. Greed in this case being internet shorthand for “wants to make more money”. I cringe whenever I see this line of thinking, because it misses the point entirely.
There are two fast food restaurants in town: Valve Pizza and Activison Burgers. Valve keeps their place immaculate. The cashiers are all smiles. They’re always giving out coupons.
Right across the street, Activision Burgers offers about the same quality food for the same price. Inside, they have a beat-up dining area where half the tables are missing salt & pepper shakers. There’s a lone surly cashier at the front counter. They charge for individual ketchup packets, the bathroom door is coin-operated, the drinks are mostly ice, and they don’t have free refills on soft drinks.
Now, is the problem with Activision Burgers “greed”? I don’t think so. Sure, they cut costs and nickel & dime you in an attempt to make money. But Valve is trying to make money too. The just understand that spending a little extra on trivial stuff like salt shakers and sweeping the floor can make more money down the road. Both of these stores are “greedy”. One of them is just one-dimensional and short sighted.
The product of fandom run unchecked, this novel began as a short story and grew into something of a cult hit.
Crysis 2 has basically the same plot as Half-Life 2. So why is one a classic and the other simply obnoxious and tiresome?
Final Fantasy X
A game about the ghost of an underwater football player who travels through time to save the world from a tick that controls kaiju satan. Really.
There's a wonderful way to balance difficulty in RPGs, and designers try to prevent it. For some reason.
The Gradient of Plot Holes
Most stories have plot holes. The failure isn't that they exist, it's when you notice them while immersed in the story.