Tag Archives: Video game industry

Australian Saints Row Incompatible With Other Copies

The Saints Row 4 saga continues with the publishing team behind the game Volution Inc. releasing an announcement on the official SR4 Facebook page today.

For the game to be classified in Australia, an optional mission had to be removed to conform to the rules of the classification board. Because this mission is no longer in the game, the Australian version of the game isn’t compatible with other copies. In other words, Australians can’t play co-op mode with their international friends.

While we are very proud of all our different missions, we do feel that Saints Row IV on the whole remains largely the same without this single optional mission, and we also feel that you deserve to know what you are getting in Australia. Due to the changes we were forced to make, this version is different than the version rated by rating boards like the ESRB, USK, and PEGI, which is why it will be incompatible with those versions in co-op.

Australian gamers have taken to the Internet to voice their outrage with many saying they’ll cancel pre-orders through Steam or at their local game shop and look to buy the game overseas to make sure they have fair access to the co-op campaign mode of Saints Row 4.

Late last week the game was given an MA15+ rating in Australia, allowing people 15 years and over access to the adult video game. Gamers are asking why they campaigned so hard for an R18+ rating when games that have been rated R18+ by other boards are censored and given inappropriate ratings here in Australia. People at the development company were upset to hear that the game had been given an MA15+ rating as they feel their game isn’t appropriate for anyone under the age of 18 years.

Personally, the whole thing is turning into a joke. I’m incredibly disappointed that Australian fans who buy the Australian version of the game won’t be able to play with their friends, that the Australian Classification Board gave this game an MA15+ rating when it’s clearly intended for adults and that the whole issue has become so drawn out. Australia, we really need to grow up.

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“Your Feedback Matters” – Microsoft Listen To Criticism and Change Everything.

Hardware developers have no respect for sleeping schedules I tell ya….

Today, Microsoft announced that it would remove the dreaded DRM and used-game policies that everyone has been so anxious about. Previously, your Xbox One would need to check in to the Xbox servers once every 24-hours to verify files. Microsoft tried to calm the waters by saying that the files that would be transferred were so small you could tether your phone to your Xbox for this check-in. Alas, the masses had spoken and they didn’t want to be anywhere near this DRM.

The used game policy was just as confusing and frustrating for consumers (even I’m still trying to get my head around the ex-policy). And that’s partly Microsoft’s fault, they weren’t very clear in explaining how trading and lending games. But they’re now changing the policy so that used games are handled the same way they’re handled on your Xbox 360; whether that’s a good or bad thing.

What’s new? The Xbox One is now region free which is something I’ve wanted for years. For too long have we been punished in Australia for our location and thus, we get games about a month behind the world (which the exception of one or two games to keep the unruly masses at bay) so now, you don’t have to wait. I’m a sucker for pre-order shinies so I might still have to wait, but at least I’ve got the choice to get a game in advance.

There’s an article on Gizmodo that outlines the ways that this change could really suck for the customer. It’s a really good read. I’d suggest going in with an open mind and seeing how it changes your mind on things.

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SEGA Bids Farewell to its Australian Development House

According to both Gamasutra and Kotaku AU, SEGA is closing down the Australian arm of its development studio later this year.

After last year’s staff layoffs, this closure may come as no surprise to some watching the market closely. While the media release doesn’t say how many employees will be affected, this recent closure adds to the worrying trend of Australian development houses. Team Bondi closed its doors in 2011 after the controversy that struck with the Triple-A game, “L.A. Noire.”

Not only this, but this is the second development house to be killed off by their parent company this week.

Disney representatives announced that it would be shifting LucasArts to a new licensing format instead of a internal development studio. LucasArts were responsible for Psychonauts and Grim Fandango and had been working on Star Wars: 1313, which had great interest from gamers.

Whatever games these development house had in store for us will either be sold to other developers or left to linger in the world of “what if?”

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NRA Hypocrisy

A big thing that hit the gaming news world this week was that the National Rifle Association (NRA) in America had released a game app on to Apple’s iOS system that used a variety of weapons in a shooting range. The game was rated for ages 4+ and up.

This app release comes weeks after the NRA condemned the video game industry over violent video games, which it blames the Sandy Hook tragedy. The NRA thinks that because Adam Lanza (the accused shooter) was a fan of Call of Duty that was enough to blame video games for his actions. Continue reading

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