Submitted by VGI 1000d ago | opinion piece

Cliffy B Defends Microtransactions. Is Wrong

The former Gears of War developer, Cliff Bleszinski, has taken to Tumblr to defend microtransactions. In the post, Bleszinski puts forward the argument that microtransactions are a valid business model, that he believes those of us moaning are “the vocal minority”, and that “If you don’t like, don’t buy it.” (Cliffy B, Culture, Industry)

jaggernaut25  +   1000d ago
I agree with every word of this 100%. Your fingers weaved my threads of thought into beautiful words.
CyberCam  +   1000d ago
You guys that agree, should also read this rebuttal to Cliffy B's statement.

It's not me, but it's makes a lot of sense, I found it in the list of responses on his original post.
#1.1 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
brish  +   1000d ago
"If you don’t like, don’t buy it."
- Cliffy

I wonder if Cliffy knows the game industry is shrinking right now because people are buying fewer games.
3-4-5  +   1000d ago
How would he know he's too busy making Gears of Brown 4.
The_Infected  +   1000d ago
I agree 100% with everything in this article also.
#2 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(2) | Disagree(10) | Report | Reply
Chris_Hyde  +   1000d ago
This hits the nail on the head for me.

We all appreciate that people are in it for the money. But just because developers push a different method of us paying for our entertainment doesn't mean we should just accept it. It's right to question it if it feels morally wrong.

Sure there will always be people who will pay for these things anyway - of course there is, that's why people like EA are proposing this method - but it doesn't mean we should just sit idly by and let them do it if we disagree with it.
rezzah  +   1000d ago
I've stated this before but will say it again, things we pay for will be things that could just have easily been obtained through completion of the game. Or one can "find all intel" and unlock the same thing you pay $3 for.

It can, and already has in some cases, will get worse when the story is targeted. Asura's Wrath is a big example of this, to actually know the ending of this game requires $5. In total if you wish to know the entire story of Asura, it costs about $15.

They sell the games at full price ($60) yet make additions that add up to $10 or more.

Why not just sell the game at the price of $70 or $80? Because overall you are not buying the full game, just the limited version that you think is the entire experience.

There are transactions that make sense to me. One is basically an early access to equipment that can be later obtained. Either way the player will obtain the item, the choice is to have it now at a cost or to wait. The other option is equipment packs. For example packs of items and or experience points are given for a cost.

The micro-transactions should not create a psychological affect of "I must buy this or the game will be incomplete". Because then your choices will be forced, even if it isn't blatant.
Wizziokid  +   1000d ago
I've said it before and I'll say it again, Microtransactions are perfectly fine as long as they don't give players a gameplay advantage.
DragonKnight  +   1000d ago
That's the thing though, Dead Space 3 did just that. Instead of players having to work for the good weapons, EA gave them the option to buy them with no work. So you'll have people who are playing the game legitimately, and then you'll have a noob at the beginning of the game with the best possible weapon. EA isn't above that kind of thing.
DarthJay  +   1000d ago
What does that matter to you? It's not PvP. Why would anyone care how someone else plays a non-competitive game?
#4.1.1 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(9) | Disagree(2) | Report
4logpc  +   1000d ago
my question to you would be, why does somebody playing the game different make it wrong? They spent their money, and they are free to play the game however they like.
aLucidMind  +   1000d ago
Who cares if the person is doing that in SINGLE player? That doesn't make them a noob or that they're playing illegitimately, that just means they're in it for the story. Thinking otherwise is nothing short of being egocentric.

What matters is if they were offering all abilities, weapons, etc for PvP multiplayer (with exception of whether that particular person isn't auto-leveled to the level where you unlock the final ability/weapon). When they're level 1 and have access to the best weapons and abilities in the game because they bought them rather than earning them by leveling up, that's when it is illegitimate because you'll be forcing other players to buy the same things you did so they can level up enough to unlock what they already unlocked by buying.
DragonKnight  +   1000d ago
*facepalm* Look at the 3 narrow minded people replying to me. The example is not the rule, it's an example. I could have gone through the 4000 character limit with other examples, Dead Space 3 is just the most recent, most prevalent example that is the catalyst for this. Seriously people, expand your thinking instead of getting offended because someone spoke out against your preconceived notions about a game.
creatchee  +   1000d ago
What you're saying has nothing to do with preconceived notions or anything like that. What the repliers were asking was how does somebody else's experience with a game affect yours in any way whatsoever unless it's a multiplayer thing? Does the existence of a shortcut infuriate you even if you have no intention of taking it?

When I was a kid, nobody bitched about other gamers using The Konami Code.
e-p-ayeaH  +   1000d ago
Uncharted 3 F2P multiplayer does the exact same thing

you have to pay for weapons, maps, taunts , skins, etc.

But thats F2P so it makes sense.
#4.1.6 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(1) | Report
DragonKnight  +   1000d ago
And again, Dead Space 3 was just the most recent and relevant console game example of this microtransaction. Would it be less displeasing for me to choose a different game so as not to offend against the love for Dead Space 3?
Old McGroin  +   1000d ago
"Microtransactions are perfectly fine as long as they don't give players a gameplay advantage."

Agreed but I would also add "as long as they don't become a requirement to progress further within the main campaign of a game".
Walker  +   1000d ago
For the first time I agree with Cliffy B !
zerocrossing  +   1000d ago
Of course that Cliffy B would defend micro transactions, he's a developer after all.

I have no problem with the idea of micro transactions, but they are abused way to much by the pubs/devs, If I buy a full priced retail game I want the full bloody game, I don't want to have to make multiple additional payments just to get the content that was intentionally held back to be sold later.

I wouldn't mind so much if we still had the choice to unlock things through skill like we did back in the day, allowing people to choose to unlock through effort or purchase DLC would be a better business model IMO, but that obliviously only works if the content is actually on the disc.

If some people are happy with micro transactions that's fine, but I shouldn't be feeling like I have to buy DLC to get the full experience I should of been getting from the the full priced retail version.
Crazay  +   1000d ago
The new Molyneux...So he's going to be a loudmouth who promises things of grandeur and disappoints repeatedly? Well he's part way there already so I guess that's a valid statement.
Blastoise  +   1000d ago
"If you don’t like, don’t buy it."

You know, I really hate this reasoning. It's annoying because usually this is stuff cut from the game. Micro transactions in a game that already costs £40/$60? WHY?!

Yeah damn right I don't like and I won't buy it either

Also, what's with this guy recently? It's like he's trying to be the biggest douche on twitter
#8 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(8) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
Mouktouk  +   1000d ago
If you don't like this article, don't comment it !

(I totally agree with you)
DragonKnight  +   1000d ago
Well what do you know. The Bill O'Reilly of VGI.com actually got something right for a change since his FOX News worthy DmC piece. I guess there's a first time for everything.

Yes, I completely agree with everything this article says and I once again say with impunity that Cliffy B. should shut his mouth. He's not making games, his cover system for Gears was ripped off from older games, and he's in no position to tell gamers what to do.

Microtransactions the way EA does them is pure greed. Plain and simple. Microtransactions are nothing new, they've been around on PC forever. The difference is written in the article. EA doesn't ADD content with them, they simply UNLOCK content with them. That's B.S. EA has helped to usher in the worst business practices for this gen and I really hope we gamers can band together and stop these things from continuing in the next gen.
VGI  +   1000d ago
Does this mean we're friends now? Wanna come round mine for a beer or is it still too soon? It's too soon, isn't it? Ah. I'm always too forward...
DragonKnight  +   1000d ago
Nah, the last time someone went 'round yours for a beer the showed up naked in front of a school speaking in tongues and ever since then developed a pathological fear of bald men an insincere grins. To see him in the institution today is the most saddening thing one can experience and chills the very soul. Plus, I don't drink.
VGI  +   1000d ago
Best. Response. EVER!
Chris_Hyde  +   1000d ago
My favourite part was the "Plus, I don't drink"
VGI  +   1000d ago
Which is all the more funnier considering neither do I.
Roccetarius  +   1000d ago
When $60+ games start having Microtransactions, we have a problem. I just simply won't support games that does this.

EA is one of the publishers trying to turn retail games into Smartphone and Tablet games. Read some of the interviews with the devs from Dead Space 3, it's disgusting.
baraka007  +   1000d ago
Very good article and a very good compare of EA and Bethesda. Both have the same end goals and it's how they achieve them that's the issue here. No one is trying to say that good games that cost a lot to make don't deserve to make more cash.
4logpc  +   1000d ago
Look its simple. It is a choice.There is nothing in any title that has a price tag on it, to my knowledge, that requires you to spend money to complete a game. Who are you to say that spending money for double XP, or skins for guns in Gears of War 3 doens't prolong the game and give it more play time? Maybe it doesn't to you, but to others it could. What if I love Call of Duty and the thing that keeps me playing is the leveling system. I could care less about map packs, I simply just want to level up. Spending two bucks to give me double XP for a week would be worth it.

Comparing it to games that are free to play is pointless. When I play something like Dead Space 3, if I want I could buy a weapon that might help me out a bit, but there is nothing that will save me hours and hours of time for a few bucks. Games like DCUO can be played without paying a dime, but it will take you MANY more hours to play through all the content and unlock all there is to offer. its an unfair comparison. By your logic, Guild Wars 2 is the biggest thief on the planet. Pay to buy the game, and it has micro transactions.

I have to agree with Cliff. If you dont like, dont buy it. There are people out there that enjoy micro transactions. Just because you think there isn't doesn't make it wrong.
Captain Qwark 9  +   1000d ago
"Take Gears of War for example: The cover system in Gears is often replicated but never duplicated. One could argue it’s one of the greatest innovations of the current generation and it was fronted by Bleszinski."

maybe not the focus of the article but hilarious nonetheless. that cover system sucks. i have no idea why it got popular but it was done better by rainbow six vegas the same month the original gears launched. the cover system in that was infinitely better. it was also done better in the newest ghost recon.........try again
Lvl_up_gamer  +   1000d ago
I disagree.

Rainbow six was a FPS that would change to a TPS when using the cover system.

If you are going to compare FPS that has a cover system, you should compare it to Killzone. Rainbow did have an awesome cover system and it's been too long between Rainbow six vegas 2 and the new Rainbow six.

As for the newest ghost recon, I found the cover system unreliable. Would stick when I didn't want too and found it a pain to pull myself off. But that is just me.

I still think Gears cover system is the best this gen so far.
KrimsonKody  +   1000d ago
In my opinion;
I'm kind of in-between the whole microtransaction thing, & I'll explain why.

I agree, that if you are already shelling out the full retail price of the game ($60), you should indeed get the full content that the game offers. If they offer microtransactions later, then hey, that's their choice, & it's your choice as to if it's worth your purchase. Maybe it will add/enhance the already experience or maybe not. But what this means is, the material that you get (or got) for your $60 is all that the developers feel you should get. If you want more, they charge you for more. Not to mention that it takes more work & time to create decent DLC.

Now, on the other side;
I do agree that some developers abuse this ability.
It's fine if the DLC gives you extra gameplay (Fallout, GTA, Castlevania, etc.)
But not when the DLC only gives you what REALLY could've fit on disc, like different color palettes, characterz outfits...& omg, did you guys see the DLC for Playstation All-Stars Royale?
Good grief!

Me, personally, I carefully pick & choose what's worth my purchase. That simple.
Yeah, many of us may not agree with how the developers 'treat' us long time supporters, but it is a business & it is what it is. It's up to developers to "take it back" & say "you know what, we should lock all this content within the game & make players find it & unlock it", but at the same time, if they can scrap it & sell it in pieces, SOMEBODY will buy it, & that's more money for them.
#14 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
jXales  +   1000d ago
My problem with this whole debacle is the way it's handled.
Games are somewhat like movies.
You purchase a media experience!

I have yet to buy a movie that charges me for subtitles, deleted scenes, alternative languages.
I would feel robbed if a movie enters finishing climax and asks for 3$ for the last five minutes or even getting unanswered questions in the script. That's bullshit!

I buy a game I expect the full experience, they want more money make a game worth 50 hours of full gameplay and release as a trilogy each having its own complete experience part of a whole.. Fine
Product placements done as in movies Ok just not overdone and intrusive.
But buying 90% of an experience is like paying for a skydive and when you pull the chute out it asks for an additional 50$ to release the chute. I call it as I see it. BS!
hazelamy  +   1000d ago
cliffy, FUCK OFF, please. ^_^
e-p-ayeaH  +   1000d ago
This only justifies for free to play games in my opinion.
clevernickname  +   1000d ago
The problem with micro-transactions, as pointed out on several different articles and blogs on the subject, is that in a $60 game you have no idea exactly how in-game purchases or lack thereof will affect your outcome and enjoyment of the game until you purchase the game.

The other issue with in-game purchases is that game studios now have no incentive to offer the best and fullest game experience for your $60. There is a financial incentive to only offer what they think is the bare minimum amount of game content they can get away with and then charge for additional content that, in years past, would have been part of the core game experience.

It all adds up to a game industry that will self implode from its own greed.
#18 (Edited 1000d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
CaulkSlap  +   1000d ago
If the content is locked on the disc, that microtransaction amounts to theft in my eyes. Most people will be entirely unaware. Even holding anything back for later DLC that was already complete is at the very least extremely immoral.

Bethesda went from the original example of bad DLC with the infamous Oblivion horse armor, to releasing the best and most complete expansion pack DLCs. This is what DLC should be. Not 200 damned skins and avatars and wallpapers cluttering up everything.

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