Short-Takes: 1/24/14

Dead Rising 3 Patch is 13 GBs, Raises Questions About Gaming's Future

Simon Wu: 

The article raises concerns about broadband data caps in relation to this issue. While the net neutrality debate has once again brought this concern front and center, ultimately, I think competition from Google Fiber and municipal initiatives will force the ISPs back on that front. Rather, my issue with this is one that I've held for a long time: the hard drive space is far too low. Granted, we will most certainly need to measure this against patches for other games, as well as further patches for this particular title. But we already know that the HDD only holds 362 GB of content from the get-go, and that each game must be installed. Sizes average around 30 GB, and this patch is 13 GB. With DLC, that will easily be 50 GB per game. So much for that huge digital library accessible instantly on demand. 

Max Gruber: 

It is a valid concern about how updates are done. The update alone is enough to be considered a full title. The average update file is between 5MBs to 600MBs large, but this just takes the cake. As Simon mentioned, broadband data caps raise a very troubling problem with the future of gaming, especially given the recent ruling from a Federal Court that the FCC can have favoring sites have faster download speeds over others. If gaming is in this "blacklist" of services that are capped, I think the whole idea of streaming game content and other services will fall completely flat on its face. 

There has been a lot of back and forth about whether we can count Nintendo out of this race for good. I think it is now safe and clear to make the call. After all, they themselves are moving on, so we should too. It is absolutely devastating to forecast that your revised sales figures for the entire YEAR will be less than what each of your competitors will sell in a few weeks. I looked back to an earlier interview with Satoru Iwata, and he insisted that the Wii U's price and differentiation would help it sell. The lightning that struck once was the gimmick, but it was also the charming simplicity of the remote. Now, it seems like they want to evolve the tablet controller to be a DS surrogate connected to a base station. If they're smart, they will make the DS the controller, to reduce cost and help realize the dream of simply walking away from the TV and continuing the game on the go. 

Max Gruber: 

I don't have much to say for Nintendo, but I'm not convinced that this new console will do justice for them. At this point, they'll be either a year or two behind the PS4 and Xbox One, and possibly the Steam Machines. At that point, very few people will be interested in Nintendo's console, as everyone will be occupied with their respective consoles. 


Disney Abandons Star Wars 1313 Trademark 

Simon Wu: 

I was more interested to note that Battlefront might be affected by some of the problems Battlefield 4 is having. Then I got afraid. Very afraid. Of EA doing what they do and releasing a broken Battlefront early. As for 1313 itself, it is possible that EA didn't like where Lucasarts was taking it, which are details we will probably never know about unless it gets leaked. It maybe also didn't fit in line with an existing product offering that one of their subsidiaries would be a good fit for. Disney would probably prefer to stick with properties like Battlefront, which have proven and extremely supportive fanbases, and also to stay close to the lightsaber hero Jedi that drive the franchise, rather than a gritty narrative story about bounty hunters in the dregs of Coruscant. 

Max Gruber: 

Why Disney? WHY!!? 


PlayStation 4 Error Corrupting Save Files 

Simon Wu: 

Hey, everyone remember the famed E74 error on the 360? While I don't think it's as bad as the 360's frankly legendary launch error issues at this point, it is a very serious problem that's targeting the crowd that has probably been most supportive of the PS4 at this point: the enthusiasts. And everyone knows that there is nothing enthusiasts hate more than losing progress in their game. It's enough to make people stop playing, and we're also early enough in the launch cycle that returns are not out of the question.

One big tidbit of information from this that Simon is glossing over, these errors are mostly happening with the early adopters, like the ones that got it from the Taco Bell sweepstakes. But, as small as that looks, it's still disconcerting that these errors are happening. Obviously it isn't nearly as infamous as the RRoD, but it's still something to consider looking forward with the PS4. Thankfully, I haven't run into this error, and I don't think it'll ever happen. The only thing that worries me is if either of these devices are prone to a RRoD-like error, where the device is rendered utterly useless after a long period of time with a high failure rate. If that's the case, I'll scared to even hold onto my PS4 for the next year or so.