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I'm not sure I do recognize this for what it is. What, precisely, are the growing pains? Are you saying, as Porpentine is, that Adam's article should not have been published? Are you simply apologizing because those whole spate of articles has inevitably offended people? I'm all for transparency and mea culpas, but I'm legitimately not sure what your conclusion is here, or what lessons have been learned.
1 year, 2 months ago on A Note On The Site
@JacobDangerGermain @LogicalDash Uh...what? Are you implying that autistic people should be barred from expressing opinions, or something? If you feel that way, you should probably stop reading Nightmare Mode.
1 year, 3 months ago on You Know What's Gross? We Often Play Nice Guys™ In Games With Romance Options
@ChristianBrimo As have I! One of my prouder achievements in life is that my ottava rima describing the opening of Grim Fandango was heartily endorsed by Richard Wilbur :)
1 year, 3 months ago on Play is excavation: the search for game poetry
Hulk beat me to it. Any reader familiar with his body of work would know that Hulk is one of the more sensitive writers on the internet, and while his comments section attracts a lot of trolls he himself is always sincere. Also, he's a master of analytic rigor (among other things, it's his job). Obviously there's plenty of room for disagreement on this point, but your editorial makes it sounds like Hulk did some sort of thoughtless hatchet job, and the man is anything but thoughtless.
1 year, 6 months ago on BREAKING: Hulk doesn't just smash...Now he trolls too!
@andre.boillot In that sense, it is sort of like WOW; a game designed to be accessible to casual players but which, at the end of the day, requires a very detailed and sophisticated understanding to "optimize" your character and play-style; the kind of stuff you probably won't learn over the course of play. It's the age of the gaming wiki, that's for sure.
1 year, 10 months ago on "Unlocks" and the gamification of gaming
@Shane O Reilly I get what you're saying there. Honestly, I'm tempted to add in a correction, but I hate anything that seems like revisionism; these comments should be enough! And yeah, I really should have focused on the jets/helis more here; in my review I wrote about my frustration that you had to "unlock" IR flares, making new players a sitting dick in aircraft.It's a little weird. I'm making incorrect assumptions, but they're assumptions that the game implicitly supports (even aside from EA's marketing). And it may just be they way we think about unlocks; we always assume they're better, and the early going (in which some "basic" abilities are locked, like the assault's revive paddles) supports that impression. Of course, part of the problem is that by dealing with "real world" weapons and a pseudo-realistic combat system, the differences can be subtle even if the perceptions of their power are not. It will be interesting to see how Planetside 2 and Mechwarrior Online, with their sci-fi settings, can further differentiate the weapons and make the differences/strengths more apparent.I appreciate the reddit links! I'll definitely check them out.
@Shane O Reilly It's also worth nothing that the mentioned EA ads were explicitly stating that the "playing field wasn't level" if you hadn't unlocked the later weapons!
@andre.boillot Thanks for the feedback!My response to Shane below covers most of this. If what you say is true (and I have no reason to doubt it!) it's an interesting decision on DICE's part to not make that clear; I suspect they WANT you to think the later weapons are better in order to compel you to play. I know I haven't leveled up my M16 or AK-74!
@Shane O Reilly Hey Shane,
Thanks for the feedback. I'll take your word for the relative balance of BF3's unlocks, and this did actually present me with an interesting journalistic quandary when writing this piece. On one hand, the fancier guns often *seemed* more powerful, but I realized this may have just been psychological trickey, the confidence gained when I looted a weapon I had yet to unlock and just assumed it was better. As noted in the article, I'm a casual BF3 player and am not familiar with the tournament scene.I did a quick search, and the few guides I looked at initially were almost as useless as the in-game resources; GameFAQs, too, had nothing decent. This is not in itself an excuse for mistakes, but one thing I was trying to do with this piece was present the view of a more typical player. The assumptions I make about the unlocks are the assumptions that most any player will make; as Andre notes below, few will go digging through dedicated forums to find the general consensus on "most verstatile weapons," and the fact that I never loot M16A3s or M4A1s on public servers is testament to the fact that most other players aren't aware of it.
The question then becomes: Did EA/DICE intentionally obfuscate the abilities of the guns by leaving out detailed information/stats from Battlelog? Or were they just lazy/incompetent? Frankly, I'm guessing the former, given that they were hardly lazy or incompetent in other areas of the game's design. If so, then that's really all that matters; the *perception* that these unlocks are better is all that is needed for the dynamics to take effect and my points to be valid.
In short: while I certainly understand your frustration with my incorrect perceptions, I'd stand by including them in the article. The history section is supposed to be objective, and I'm going to be embarassed if anyone digs up glaring errors in that. But the intro is my subjective experience of the game; and the actual competitive balance of the guns doesn't really factor into it.