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Podcast #2 Discussion Topic: Online/Downloadable Games

Poll Results (voting in this poll has ended)
What Role Do Downloadable Games Play in the Current Generation?
40% 2 votes
Xbox Live Arcade vs. Wii Virtual Console vs. Playstation Network
0% 0 votes
60% 3 votes
TOTAL 100% 5 votes
Podcast #2 Discussion Topic: Online/Downloadable Games – February 2, 2007 4:06 AM (edited 2/1/07 11:10 PM)
Talraen (2373 posts) Doesn't Play with Others
Rating: Not Rated
With the podcast scheduled to be recorded on Saturday (that's tomorrow by the time most of you read this), we need to finalize a topic. In the chat today it became pretty clear that the online/downloadable games topic was popular enough to do a podcast on, but too expansive to just leave as is. Therefore, I'm taking three subtopics and putting them to a vote here. I'm going to give a pretty detailed description of each, so read on so you know what it is you're voting for.

Note that there was support for an RMT podcast, but since that would require a very specific set of participants (i.e., MMO players) and is only tangentially related to the overall topic, I'm leaving it out of this poll. Rest assured, the RMT podcast will rear its head again in the future, just not this week.

What Role Do Downloadable Games Play in the Current Generation?
This is an analysis of downloadable games from a general perspective, looking at the advantages and disadvantages of them as a concept. Things like price, convenience, development time, the potential for indie games, and so on. Basically, anything that separates downloadable games from retail disc-media games. Note that this topic is not directly concerned with downloadable retail games (like Half-Life 2), though that sort of thing isn't specifically off-limits. (In other words, this is not a discussion of digital distribution, except insofar as that downloadable games are by definition digitally distributed.)

Xbox Live Arcade vs. Wii Virtual Console vs. Playstation Network
This is a direct comparison of the three services, touching on any way in which they differ. If this topic is chosen, I will put together a quick little comparison table that all podcast participants will have available, and we will try to follow some kind of structure (probably comparing one aspect at a time: content, pricing, etc.), because this topic could get out of hand really quickly. But hey, maybe that's not so bad. Although this topic relates directly to something only a few of us have actually used, beyond having someone who has used each service (I can do XBL and PSN, and if Matt's around he can do the VC), I don't think we really need people who have extensive experience with these services - they are, after all, console selling points, and the point of view of a consumer yet to be sold on them is perfectly valid.

Here I am referring more to downloadable expanded game content than cheap downloadable games - the latter is the purview of the first selection. Not that you can't mention them, since there are plenty of downloadable games that are cheaper than some microtransactions (GRAW has a $15 downloadable expansion pack, for instance). However, the idea here is more to talk about the concept of microtransactions and all they entail - anything from extra content to cheats to component-based downloads (like Lumines Live! on XBLA). We could even touch on some RMT concepts, like repeatable microtransactions for in-game content. This one is a bit more esoteric, but there's plenty to discuss.

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