Early Sunday, a surprising and still yet-to-be-approved merger between Activision and Vivendi Games was announced. Vivendi Games (which owns Blizzard Entertainment, the creators of the uncannily popular World of Warcraft) will buy a majority stake in Activision to create a new company, Activision Blizzard. Providing regulators …
we were looking
last night me and my buddy were looking at activisions game portfolio - up until about 2000 the list is full of new names and is dynamic and interesting. Post 2000 it's all tony hawks, movie rip offs and other boring titles.
Same with "EA"
Do you remember games like attack sub and seawolf? Electronic Arts made those... shocking eh?
Well we can look forward to Call Of Warcraft and World of Tony Hawkes from the new company whilst EA work on NEVERWINTERPOTTER and Fifa Mass Referee and the Battlefield Effect.
O well looks like I wont be buying many new games for anothed 6 or so years again.
World of Guitar Hero?
Raid Kara for you epic self-tuning Gibson?
With the possble exception of Wing Commnder VI, hasthere been anything worth buying since Elite? The hours of fun I used to have with Lenslok...
Sad but true ...
@AC: You're right.
The bigger a games company gets, the less willing it becomes to innovate, and starts lying to itself that what customers REALLY want is last year's game with new graphics and another new annoying game mechanic (usually removing LAN options and enforcing multiplayer through centralized laggy servers). Worse, they support and spread this lie by churning out the same crap year on year, until there's almost NO CHOICE for a consumer apart from their drivel.
The problem is that they throw increasingly big budgets at a game, most of which ends up in marketing and product placement, NOT in actual software development.
It's gotten so bad that marketing (well,management decides; marketing just has near-full control of the choices presented to them) not only decides what gets developed, but also when it's going to be released, regardless of what state it's in (waiting till the "gold" release of a game isn't just about saving money anymore, it's usually the first version that runs without too many crashes and major bugs) - and then charge an outrageous price for it.
Yes, I've seen this up close; smaller game companies are beginning to emulate their bigger counterparts believing that "release early, patch often" will actually enhance their reputation .... of course, the contrary is true but they're so stuck in the lie they probably couldn't change if they wanted to.
I'm not going to cry about Blizzard - they're getting exactly what they deserve, and should have gotten it long ago; they're no more than a name with a famous past, and little future other than to churn more content for their "star" title.
What a fate for what once was one of the most innovative game studios.
Best wishes for their marriage
Vivendi+Activision? Well I hope that the Vivendi partner can persuade Activision to rejig their technical support services.
Had a problem recently that knocked out my all my Medal of Honor (EA)and Call Of Duty (Activision) installations - something to do with Macrovision protection. The EA support were pretty responsive and did manage to solve the problem, (with some input from their tech support forums). Activision, on the other hand, sent me a "we have received your problem details, now look at our FAQs" email and that was the extent of the "help". :(
(If anyone's interested the problem was found to be due to the "System Mechanic 7" utility from iolo - who also seem to have a totally useless/non-responsive tech support helldesk)
Blizzard+InfinityWard is an interesting combination. Does this mean that Call Of Duty 5 will forgo the guns, grenades and rocket launchers in favour of swords, bows and cannon? It's just a thought! ;)
Of course ... Its called Civilization IV ..
Games worth buying ....
"Of course ... Its called Civilization IV .."
Or Age of Mythology ... (Civ4 and AoM are the last games I bought, oddly enough)
Activision+Blizzard = a shareholders wet dream, but endless purgatory to people who value games that are remotely original.
Games worth buying
SUPREME COMMANDER PERHAPS ?
How long I have waited for a Total Annihilation sequel...
Oh, and Baldur's Gate 1/2 too, give us a sequel.
french kiss of death
I'm not antifrench or anything but having worked in the games industry for over 10 years I've seen one alarming trend. If you get bought by a french games company you're likely to get f%$ked. Infogrames buying Ocean, Titus buying Interplay, Inforgrames buying Shiny (who are recovering slowly) ...
you bought civ IV? Civ has been a pile of dung since Call to power. I bought Civ 3 thinking it would be great but reverting to the depressing Civ 2 combat engine (2 units happily defending a city against 24 units at times and crippling of artillery) resulted in me literally throwing the game out of the window. Deleting it and never again playing a civ game.
Alpha Centauri and Ctp2 are the games for me, and a bit of playing with xconq.
Games worth buying
Hmmm you could try the X series - sort of picks up the same angle as Elite (if you switch off the storyline); it's not bad although gets a little pointless when you're hoiking around massive freighters and swimming in cash... then again, so did Elite if you ever reached Elite.
Total War (from Rome onwards - the original Shogun was good, but I didn't really rate the first Medieval apart from the Viking Invasion expansion).
Civ 4 as mentioned by someone else (1 and 2 were good as well - didn't get on with 3).
Half-life and HL2 - for bringing something new to the FPS genre (Doom3 feels really limited when you can only walk into chairs, not pick them up and throw them).
Neverwinter Nights & NWN2 - good stories, quite shiny - the MMOG community could learn from the character advancement system in NWN... oh they did, sorta, DDO.
Final Fantasy VII (onwards) on Playstation... top stories, very shiny!
At the moment though I'm bouncing between Team Fortress 2 mod (HL2) and a game based on Bioware's Aurora Engine (that also runs NWN2) called "The Witcher" - now there's a game that was NEVER intended for kids...
Vivendi already owned the majority of Activision for a long while and is now just choosing to merge Blizzard and Activision together.
Nice. But how much is the repair bill on that thing?
games to buy (or wait for) from blizzard
seriously amazed no-one has mentioned Starcraft, and the massively anticipated Starcraft 2.
Forget the sloth that is WoW, Starcraft is the future (and no bows and arrows to be seen) and utterly original. Just look at Korea and the SC fanatacism over there, man, those guys know how to game. (see youtube for some crazy starcraft tournament vids)
Pah Starcraft 2 (and sequels in general)
So Blizzard is reinventing their own dog-chewed C&C clone. So utterly **original**
What's up next ? The utterly thrilling "new and improved" Diablo 3 ? (cue cynical laughter here)
I can hardly wait - to knock it into the shitpile with all the other sequelized games out there. A game can be original only once. After that it's just adding eyecandy for the Release Of The Year. But nobody minds, because it'll be Full HD (or whatever) with Realworld(tm) Physics, Utterly Real GRaphics (tm) with Superbass(tm) Sound Engine all that shit.
Funny how nobody seems to care how a game *plays* - it's all "how it looks" and "how it sounds" and "what the glossy website promises" - what's beneath the carefully crafted exterior doesn't matter; likely it's the same old, tired game with one or two new (overhyped) bits tossed in to mask that fact.
Prepare to be disappointed.
But again, nobody cares, Because It's Blizzard, It Must Be Good.
pah counter retort
I understand your obvious disappointment, I'm not saying Starcraft 2 will play awesome as i haven't personally had opportunity to play it (no-one has); but to be honest, if it sticks with the playability of the previous, thats all it needs. I've seen previews, and yes it looks very pretty, but there are a hell of a lot of new features going in, and its those that most are anticipating. So what if its re-inventing, if it works, stay with it. I don't hear anyone moaning about the current market's darling of the hour (Nintendo) constantly churning out the same guff (Mario) with added features and pretty new sets.