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61 comments

  • BladedFalcon - November 4, 2013 9:24 a.m.

    Andy, I love you, but you're much of a nice guy. In any other industry, if you rushed a car that broke down within 15 minutes of driving it, no one would even think of saying "you should give the manufacturer a break!". If you buy something, you expect it to at least WORK, regardless of whether it's actually what you wanted or if it's good. Heck, games USED to be like this, before DLC, you either shipped a properly functioning game, or else it would be panned by everyone, justifiably so. So no, I don't think DICE deserves a break, just like Firaxis didn't either with the new Sim City, or Bethesda with Skyrim. If you rush out a game in order to meet deadlines and please your corporate superiors, instead of releasing it when it's actually done, then you DESERVE getting tons of shit for it... And actually, the fact that they KEEP doing this more and more says to me that people aren't being hard enough on them. I DO agree with you that people shouldn't be outright ASSHOLES when complaining though. The people that straight out insult or fling threats are actually just undermining the message, so yes, that should stop. But the actual complaints, or just outright refusing to pay a single buck more? that should happen MORE.
  • TCMU287 - November 4, 2013 9:59 a.m.

    I'm sorry, but this is the first post I've seen from you where you don't seem to know what you're talking about. First, BF4 is not broken, as you seem to imply. At least not for me. I've played about 12 hours since I bought it a few days ago and it's only crashed a few times. Now maybe for some that's somehow unacceptable, that games should never have problems. Or maybe you have worse problems than I, since all PCs are different and affected differently. But to say a game doesn't work even though it works at least 95% of the time is really unfair. But my main point is that you seem to think games only recently suffered these problems. That's untrue. Ever heard of KOTOR 2? By all accounts one of the best RPGs ever, and by all accounts nearly broken at release. In fact, fans just last year stomped out the bugs so that we can play the game as it was intended(and you should, it's fantastic). Similar things happened with the release of Planescape: Torment, Fallout 2, Baldur's Gate 2, Morrowind, and most RPGs from the late 90s/early 2000s. They were all buggy at release, and got loads of patches, both official and unofficial. But they're still considered some of the best games ever. So is a buggy release excusable? Maybe, if the game is good enough. But it's definitely universal, and definitely not a recent problem. Any game with a massive world like an rpg, or a large multiplayer, like battlefield, is going to have it's problems. Also Firaxis had nothing to do with Sim City, or any of the series. But that's probably just a typo.
  • BladedFalcon - November 4, 2013 10:45 a.m.

    Yeah it was, I didn't mean Firaxis, I meant Maxis, my bad XD Anyway, no disrespect to you at all, but just because you haven't had any issues with the game yet, doesn't mean they don't exist, and that people shouldn't complain about it. Heck, the fact alone that this article was written was because there has been big problems happening to more than enough people to make this a thing. My personal experience with my ps3 version of skyrim was mostly smooth, but I'm not gonna pretend that there was a huge problem going on for a lot other users. Also... You said these problems happened before... yet your only examples are PC games developed by obsidian entertainment or published by Bethesda, because they indeed have always been known to release buggy games. Everywhere else in the industry most games DID run fine, at least the good ones. For all the shit I may give Nintendo, their games to this date are almost always flawless in their quality control. And being big games doesn't excuse them for being broken or riddled with bugs. Take rockstar games from the PS2 era. Yes, they also had some issues, but not nearly as gamebreaking as bethesda bugs, and those games were also massive. Also, understand that I'm not saying a game should release with NO bugs or glitches. But it SHOULD release in a way that is mostly playable for the vast majority of people, otherwise it's a broken product. To put it in another way, if the game has issues that are only affect the presentation, or can be corrected by reloading a save, and don't happen ALL THE TIME? then that counts as tolerable enough for me. If the game has issues that freeze your game frequently, crash it, or straight up delete your progress? THAT is unacceptable, and shouldn't be tolerated.
  • ParagonT - November 4, 2013 1:06 p.m.

    So your defense is that because a few other games have had a crappy release that it makes it okay? Alrighty then...... That makes perfect sense.
  • PhantomPineapple - November 4, 2013 10:10 a.m.

    I'm pretty sure the "corporate superiors" decide when the game ships in the end. Blame them. A game has a definite budget so it has a deadline. You meet deadlines or you don't and the game loses funding. You can't just move the release date farther and farther back. And if you don't please your superiors your jobless and can't feed your family. It's a freaking balancing act. Here's a better way to think about your car analogy. Cars breakdown at some point. It will happen eventually. Cars start in a good condition and get worse. And then you spend money to fix it. Typically games start of okay and get better. And you don't spend money to fix it. That PS3 thing with Skyrim was terrible though.
  • BladedFalcon - November 4, 2013 10:51 a.m.

    Oh, I know it's the corporate superior's fault, and I totally blame them, that's why I refuse to buy games that have their company brand in it. Also, your analogy is flawed because the life expectancy of a car is far greater than one of a game, and a good car should be able to run fine for years before showing significant problems if you maintain it well, also, a car is expected to be used for years, if not decades. Most games however, while they COULD last and give you years of playtime should you want to, most people tend to play them for weeks, months at most. I know there are exceptions, but what I mean is. The excuse of "it'll get better... eventually" doesn't really hold water because most people want to play a game NOW. And it used to be fine to be that way up until this generation. We haven't grown more demanding, publishers and developers have grown more sloppy, and that to me is what shouldn't stand.
  • ParagonT - November 4, 2013 1:08 p.m.

    That analogy has nothing to do with what the problem is.
  • ParagonT - November 4, 2013 1:04 p.m.

    Amen.
  • chavbuster1 - November 4, 2013 9:14 a.m.

    I'm waiting to play this on PS4 and haven't played this yet. I have one question... Can anyone tell me if this has Rent-a-Server?
  • larkan - November 4, 2013 8:47 a.m.

    "However, the more cynical elements online have started using it as a stick to beat developers, making wild assumptions that studios piss out games quickly under the assumption that they can ‘fix it post-release’. To tar every studio with this same brush is ludicrous, even if there is an occasional grain of truth to the matter." So basically, when they rush broken games out so they can patch them later to say, beat a competitor to the punch (COD), we shouldn't be calling them out on that? Bullshit. There is more than an "occasional" grain of truth, we have a fucking SILO of grain to reference here. Developers are lazy thanks to the ever growing power of the internet. If you don't believe that, then I feel sorry for you as a person for having your head so far up your ass you can't see the obvious truth.
  • Exegete - November 4, 2013 9:27 a.m.

    While I don't agree with the tone of your argument, the actual argument itself does hold some water. There is a difference, in my opinion, between obscure bugs and main bugs. Its a given that someone is going to find a bug doing something that no one predicted a player would do. Its going to happen. But there are several bugs, a few of which I have experience, that occure during a normal play through of the campaign. It's not as though these were hidden. I've encountered several of these in online gameplay as well, and while none of them have been game breaking, there is a distinct feel that they aren't exactly... hidden. It seems like even the 100 testers they had would have found them. It's hard not to make assumptions then that they shoved the game out the door with a bit more speed than they would have done otherwise because of CoD release. It's a competitive world, and getting your product out onto shelves before you main competitor is a big deal. Lets not pretend that had NO influence on their decisions, although we can debate about how much.
  • GR_AndyHartup - November 4, 2013 12:30 p.m.

    You know, I thought it was dark in here...
  • ParagonT - November 4, 2013 1:09 p.m.

    Amen to that. What I was about to say.
  • Doctalen - November 4, 2013 8:09 a.m.

    Excellent points but for the most part you are preaching to the converted. First lets assume that battlefield 4 will be as successful as any call of duty or even GTA. That's nearly 24 million players (I know it's only been a week but sush). Now let's assume these bugs affect one million players. That's just a tad over four percent. For a series of bugs only affecting 4% of the population that seems like a damn good job. I've ran across the account of software developer who I'll paraphrase since I cannot remember his/her username but only that it was posted in the xcom forums on the 2k site. Doing hundreds or potentially thousands of man hours and labor costs to fix a problem for a small percentage of total population is a money drain. Sure these people might be vocal for a while but it's also likely the very same people who are bitching about these problems don't read reviews or look for quality assurance beforehand, they simply catch the hype train till the next stop anyways. Now if these bugs were more widespread than the hypothetical population and percentage of said population then my argument gets shot to shit. But hey you can only so so much on speculation alone.
  • DEMONTHESE2211 - November 4, 2013 7:23 a.m.

    Unless it is obviously neglect on the part of the developers I have never understood why people expect these things to be perfect or demand some sort of gift for the smallest inconvenience. These are hugely complex programs and if a bug has a 1 in a million chance of showing up and you have 3 million players then its going to happen 3 times; of course bugs are far more likely than that. It seems to me that the ability to fix bugs post-release has caused a sense of entitlement that our games must come out perfect because if you are even a month later than release most games have all the major problems fixed. Not to say that it never undeserved scorn but most of the time I think it is.
  • BladedFalcon - November 4, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    Because games usually DID ship out in a mostly functional way most of the time in the past? Back when you didn't have the crutch of DLC or patches, everyone made a much bigger effort in making sure the game worked right. But nowadays, they feel they can be sloppier or have shit quality control, because they can just patch it later. Again, imagine if this happened for any other product you bought, wouldn't you be pissed?
  • GR_AndyHartup - November 4, 2013 12:29 p.m.

    You know me, BF - always the optimist! Ok... Bugs have always been a factor, as I say in the article. They only appear more frequent now because games are more complex, and it's easier to hear about them via all our lovely social media networks. Here's a list of horrific bugs in old and new games: http://www.bucketbros.com/text/worst-videogame-bugs.html Before patches we just dealt with bugs. Now, we don't have to. In that way, gamers have never had it so good. Yes, in a perfect world, games would work perfectly from the start. Like cars. After a few weeks, games usually do work perfectly (like new cars), but unlike cars, they continue to work - in theory - forever. I wish I could say the same for my car. As for just rushing to meet deadline - I've never, ever met a developer who had the attitude of 'let's just get it finished to meet the marketing schedule'. These guys take so much pride in their work, even the ones making games that (they know will) score 1 or 2 stars on Radar. I do conceded that some corners are occasionally cut to meet unrealistic deadlines imposed by publishers, but no-one ever thinks 'Hey, we can be sloppy with this one because we can fix it in a week or two'.
  • ParagonT - November 4, 2013 1:13 p.m.

    Im entitled to a working game. Thats is not present here. And there is a vast difference between a "few bugs" and a freaking mountain of bugs with some preventing you from even playing the damn thing, some even deleting game data consistently. I guess your right though...... we should just know our place. How dare we want a working product and one that functions. How dare we want a game that has been properly play-tested and pruned for bugs. How dare we pay 60 dollars and ask for such things? Jesus Christ, be sure to swallow and wipe after your finished under EA's desk.
  • tomasspipass - November 4, 2013 5:41 a.m.

    I find it interesting in the gaming community were it appears to me some developers get hated on for this issue, where others are more defended and there is less outrage. More love less hate please across the board :D I don't think the developers of sim city, after the years spent putting the game together where happy to see their beloved series lose so much reputation and it is likely that the drm decision was fuelled by good intention and also out of the hands of most people that worked on that game. GTA Online, it confuses me somewhat that rockstar are giving free in game currency to players, I understand people had lost characters, but giving in game currency could create inbalances in the game. The amount of time that passed between GTA online being released and the lost character bug being fixed was what two weeks? As people are likely to be playing GTA online for the next couple of years, two weeks seems a short period, that lost characters can be quickly replaced. I understand Rockstar, or any developer, does not want to disgruntle and lose fans but giving so much ingame currency could potentially break the game or at least make it easier? GTA online was only annouced a couple of months prior to GTA5 being released, no one knew about their online plans, and what they have created is massive in scope, so I don't see why people should get so mad about an online service that was much bigger than anyone had anticipated. Every mmo/big online game has an unstable launch and even the big single player games (Skyrim). It is impossible to weed out every bug in such big games, so shouldnt it be accepted to have a grace period of the first month/two months of a games release for the developers to implement fixes. There is no really effective alternate way developers can fix these issues, a game could be held back another year to thoroughly test and fix bugs, and when it launches to the millions of consumers, bugs will still be found. Gamers just need to accept this is part of the life cycle of a game, and know that good developers who are passionate about their games will continue to support, fix and improve to make even better experiences. At what point does it become unacceptable.. the ps3 skyrim lag issue that was an issue in oblivion i would say is in the realms of unacceptable. I've kind of lost track of what I was trying to say.. anyway, looking forward to playing Battlefield 4 on PS4, won't be until after christmas due to lack of funds though =/
  • ParagonT - November 4, 2013 7:08 p.m.

    These are not "little bugs". These are consoles freezing, game data lost, and missing functionality. Trying to defend a launch because other games have bugs (ones not even close to as bad as these are) is ridiculous and is a broad sweeping statement. I guess you should be happy about a car that you bought not working because other manufacturers cars sometimes don't start, or you should be happy your computer doesn't work because other computers have problems. Where is the line drawn? The fact of it is that they SOLD you the game. So you are entitled to everything they promote and a functioning game. Just because some people decide to throw a fit about one launch more than another doesn't make it an issue of the consumer, its still all about the game. Trying to turn the blame onto the consumer or tell them they should just "get used to it" is pretty much just giving a free pass to any service or product maker, which is not how the world works.
  • tomasspipass - November 5, 2013 4:08 a.m.

    I wholeheartedly agree with what you say Paragon, however there's no clear answer to this issue at the moment. Due to constraints by publishers and financers put on the developers. Also that creating games is a business and for the business to survive requires profit to be made. The gaming industry is incredibly competitive, many studios have been closed down this generation. With the unacceptable bugs in battlefield 4 it is apparent that bug fixing/polishing was rushed to meet the targeted release to coincide with the next gen console launches, or not necessarily rushed, but instead no additional development time granted. Battlefield 4 is perhaps the biggest, most next-gen game to come out at launch and this year, if it was instead held back until spring would it still make such an impact when games such as titanfall and destiny are due out ? would it sell as much? would battlefield 4 not being in the launch line up mean less consoles were sold at launch? I don't agree with EA on microtransactions, their influence on dead space 3, and sim city's launch was an absolute mess. As a developer I would be devastated to see my game flop so badly. From an outsiders perspective it does seem EA and profit is the root cause of their games going wrong. That said, the competitive nature of the industry, although bad in some ways (games getting released prior to bugs being fixed, games wasting resources to shoe horn in game modes in a me too approach, oversaturation of popular games) can and does push the industry forward (xbox one v ps4, call of duty:ghosts v batteflied 4). Though I think EA should allow their developers more free reign. I'm certainly not blaming the consumer. As to whether we should get used to it, that's tricky. No ,I agree we should'nt have to get used to it and we should speak up if there are problems with the products we buy. I undstand that the scope and complexity of games makes finding and fixing bugs ever more difficult, and that a line has to be drawn somewhere otherwise a game will never be released, in this case it sounds like battlefield 4 was released to early. To be honest this article and the comments are making me realise I have become apathetic to this issue and that this is the wrong stance to take if we as gamers and consumers want the industry to take note that we don't want to buy broken games. It all just seems to come down to profits and the problems of a monetary society, which is the cause of a lot of todays problems. I've taken an article about bugs in gaming to the problems of a monetary society, i think it's time I got out of the house..

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