* Posts by Greg J Preece

2505 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Reports: New Xbox could DOOM second-hand games market

Greg J Preece

Re: silly argument

I wonder why I've never seen a steamwatcher app to alert you when your preferred games get discounted?

Because Steam already does this. Add the games to your wishlist and they'll e-mail you when they go on sale.

Greg J Preece

I only wish that were true. Sorry, but every single physical copy in the shops will have either Steam, or some other form of restrictions management, many of which will either limit the install count or, like Steam/Steamworks, prevent resale entirely.

Actually, it is optional. Not all games on Steam use Steamworks for the physical disc release. They tend to do so if both releases are simultaneous, but there's no requirement for it.

Greg J Preece

Re: @Greg J Preece

I haven't heard of any case of "I sell games to be able to afford new games"

Then you are quite fantastically ignorant. This is the basis of entire companies. Using CeX as an example again, they don't just offer higher prices on exchange because they want to keep your custom; they do it because they know their customers are trading in on newer products.

You can go into any Game store in the land at the time of a major game release, and you'll find a poster that says the customer can get the game for free (or a quid, or something similar), if they trade in two recent games from a pre-determined list. That's the store knowing that its customer base trade in on new games, and trying to control the games that are traded in in that transaction in a way that benefits them most.

That you deny that this happens, let alone the scale at which it happens, speaks volumes. In fact, it's incredible to me. But then, you describe traders as parasites, and that they can't be regarded as good just because they benefit the consumer...

And this?

What it encourages are two things: no morals towards the developer and further purchasing of pre-owned games. Again, kids need to be taught patience and not wanting everything right now, especially if they can't afford it. Especially the kids in the US.

How dare you sit in your position of privilege and tell those with less that they should learn to accept it, or that anything that benefits them should be stopped because it's supposedly harmful to an industry they're trying to help fund. Not everyone can afford what you can, and excluding those people from the target demographic leads to exactly what I suggested at the end of my last post. Your attitude stinks of "it's OK for me, so I'm going to get high and mighty with those less privileged."

When I purchase a game, I have completed my "moral obligation" towards the developer. If I sell that game to someone else, perhaps the developer should have some fucking respect for my purchase?

Greg J Preece

Re: @M Gale

There are more reasons. If I understand the console market correctly, the console makers sell their products pretty underpriced, because they expect to get sales from the sales of games.

Then they can budget for it. They managed to make enough profit when second hand games were completely unrestricted, no? If Microsoft weren't making money from the Xbox, they wouldn't do it.

Secondly, I don't think reselling games is very healthy for the whole business... The only one profiting from that are currently the resellers - parasites.

Game traders are not parasites. They provide a useful service to the end customer, that of being able to get rid of property you no longer want, and optionally trade it in against something new. In the case of a store like CeX, that new thing might not even be a video game. If it were not beneficial to the end user, they wouldn't be able to make a business from it.

Also, by selling their pre-owned games at a lower (or much lower) price point than the new games, they enable those without much money to get into games and series that they couldn't otherwise afford to experience, which then encourages future purchasing. Now, let's think of a demographic that are very keen on video games, but might not be initially able to afford them new....hmmmmm......oh, right - kids!

From publisher's and developer's point of you, it's the same if you just pirate the game, is it not?

It absolutely is not, and your thinking is flawed to the point of insult. A pirate takes a copy of the game without payment, and if they hand it on, they do so again without payment (generally speaking).

In order for a pre-owned game to be sold, it had to be bought in the first place. Every pre-owned game on a store shelf represents a new purchase. And many of those games that are traded in are traded in order to be able to afford, get this, NEW GAMES!

The second hand market directly benefits the game industry, but the arrogance and greed of major publishers, coupled with folks who would dare equate reselling with theft, is leading to this exclusionary system that will either make video gaming the pasttime of the wealthy few, or crash the industry entirely, as it so thoroughly deserves.

Greg J Preece

Alternate article title: "Public requirement for a second-hand games market could DOOM new Xbox."

Internet cafés declared 'illegal businesses' in Ohio

Greg J Preece

"These 500 illegal, unregulated, corner gambling parlors have been making tens of millions of dollars by swindling their poor, elderly, and vulnerable slot players," Cuyahoga County prosecutor Timothy McGinty said in a statement.

Because nobody wealthy or under 60 gambles. Ever. Not once. No sir.

What's more, Senator Hughes said some Ohio internet cafés had been linked to money laundering, fraud, drug sales, and even human trafficking.

....By Senator Hughes, in order to get the thing passed.

Is the next-gen console war already One?

Greg J Preece

Re: Xbox One

Just look at the PS3 / Xbox 360 - the PS3 was claimed to have 50% more CPU power, but the Xbox has the best graphics in most cases....

Not sure where you're getting that from. I've never seen anything on the 360 that comes close to some of the PS3 exclusives. In fact, there are several games I can name that aren't on the 360 simply because it couldn't cope - the inFamous series, for one. It's not an exclusive because they have some kind of deal with Sony; it's because the X-box can't handle the game. Sucker Punch even said so.

'Leccy car biz baron Elon Musk: Thanks for the $500m, taxpayers...

Greg J Preece

Re: Note that difference *loan* (with interest) versus old car maker (2nd or 3rd) bailout.

Actually, I read it as a Libertarian "I've got mine; fuck you," anti-government, anti-tax-that doesn't-benefit-me-right-now screed.

I'm not sure you've fully grasped this "libertarian" bit.

Apple cored: Samsung sells 10 million Galaxy S4 in a month

Greg J Preece

Re: Fanboi Mania - difficult to understand, from either camp

I, personally, find it a little bit off-putting knowing that I currently possess the 1st, 2nd or 3rd best selling phone on the market. Kind of makes me feel like a brainless sheep.....

Ah, so you're a hipster. :-p

I get your point though, and I do agree. I always buy whatever hardware I think is best, and sod the brand. If some fanboy then wants to tell me why I'm wrong, I can justify the purchase with something demonstrable, rather than just saying "nu uh, mine's cooler."

Sure, my current phone is Android, but I bought that one because it's supposed to be getting Ubuntu....at some point. And I really wanted an evolved N900, but keyboards and a low-level OS are apparently now illegal or something. Buy whatever you think is best for you.

That said, if you then turn around as a fanboy and say extremely stupid things to me (like the person last night who tried to tell me that smartphones didn't exist before the iPhone), then I'm going to call you on your crap. ;-)

Review: Samsung Galaxy S4

Greg J Preece

The line that impressed me most was the one regarding lack of heat buildup. My recent Nexus 4 purchase has underwhelmed me, if I'm honest, and I still regard my S3 as the better phone. One of the Nexus' party tricks is heating up to surprising levels from just about any screen usage longer than a few minutes. It's just not on. That the reviewer was able to game for a considerable time without heat is impressive.

Microsoft reveals Xbox One, the console that can read your heartbeat

Greg J Preece

Re: No second-hand games

Why? Virtually every console game released now has a "this game requires 4 fuckloads of hard drive storage" message on the back or similiar, and then you get the inevitable stream of patches that take the beta-level shit you've bought and plug some showstopping bugs.

Errr, which console are you playing on? In my entire time with a PS3 I think I've installed what, 2 games?

Greg J Preece

I watched the livestream, and the presentation was awful. A bunch of suits spouting corporate bullshit and desperately trying to engage with "da yoof" by constantly name-dropping things they'd heard of.

"You can see here I've been listening to some Deadmau5."

"I like Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones."

Etc, etc. Patronising arses.

First they talked about TV, and all the ways to watch TV, etc, etc. They seemed to have some kind of obsession with sports and Then they rabbited on about the hardware. Finally, after half an hour they decided to talk games, and what was the first thing they did? They announced a partnership with EA! Of all the people you bring to a product launch, you bring the most hated company in America??

EA announced more EA sports titles, and we were all supposed to care. Microsoft talked Forza, Halo, Call of Duty, and I nearly fell asleep. CoD looked excellent on a technical level, but then CoD is always excellent in some respect. The storyline looked like bollocks though.

Here's a thing to ask yourself: Was there a single second of actual gameplay footage anywhere in that 90 minute presentation? Anywhere? Call of Duty came bloody close, and I thought for a second I actually saw some, then I realised there was no HUD. Every single thing relating to games was pre-rendered, and I'm certain that the stuff on the big screen was simulated, even the Skype call (seriously, you didn't notice the perfect timing and scripted lines?). We haven't seen this thing in action, at all.

It was a bloody disgrace. The machine looks OK as a set top box, but as a console I saw no reason to buy it when the PS4 presentation did a far better job of positioning the machine as a games machine, which it is. The PS4 presentation basically went through a list of every single one of the PS3's flaws and said how they would be fixed, which is how you bloody do it! The Microsoft guys were almost embarrassed to admit it was a games machine.

Greg J Preece

Re: No second-hand games

Details are still hazy on this. Microsoft say it doesn't need an always-on connection, but it does need a connection, which I presume is for activating products against your account. Also, all games apparently have to be installed when you buy them, which could really piss people off.

Gay marriage? We'll put a stop to that 'human bug', says Nintendo

Greg J Preece

Re: Sims games should be assumed to be for innocents

Gay people living together isn't marriage. Never has been.

There's no reason to deprive them of legal privileges, but it isn't marriage.


Sorry, bald assertions carry absolutely no weight with me.

Greg J Preece

Re: Same Sex Marrage

In a letter delivered to Downing Street, 34 past and present local Conservative Party chairmen urged the PM to drop the same-sex marriage bill."

So...no MPs then? And "past and present" implies that a number of these people have retired, and aren't even active in politics.

Greg J Preece

Re: Same Sex Marrage

I see what you did there, and you can have an upvote for it.

Greg J Preece

Re: Sims games should be assumed to be for innocents

Sims games should be assumed to be for innocents, so why is this bad press?

So straight marriage is cute and innocent, and we can shoehorn wedding plotlines into every little girl's show ever, but gay marriage is some big dark evil we should shield children from the knowledge of?

Get fucked.

It! Started! With! A! GIF!... Yahoo! Actually! Buys! Tumblr! for! $1bn!

Greg J Preece

The minute you said "empower creators", you fucked it up. No-one in the real world talks like that. It's corporate horseshit.

Nvidia opens pre-orders for handheld Shield console three days early

Greg J Preece

Re: article should mention battery life

I have to admit, if that's even remotely accurate, it's bloody impressive.

Greg J Preece

The games on the Android store are improving (mainly because of indie PC ports to the system rather than mobile games improving as a genre), but they're still not as good as a traditional mobile lineup for me. I really do like the design of this thing (though I'm not sure about the positioning of those analogs), but I can't justify spending way more I would on a Vita on something that only plays Android games.

Android device? Ooohhhh, you mean a Samsung phone

Greg J Preece

Re: Samsung took over the Nokia market

They produce great hardware relatively cheap. That's at least why I sometimes buy Samsung. Nothing less nothing more.

The one company I tend to go for because of their hardware is, weirdly (or maybe not), Sony. Their software sucks bricks, but the hardware is usually top notch stuff. From my Playstations to my e-reader to my MP3 players of yesteryear, they've almost always proven to be excellent on a hardware front, with software that comes nowhere near the same quality.

With the exception of the XMB. I like that thing! Yes, I am aware I am the only person in the universe who does.

Greg J Preece

Re: Design?

Sure, the games move you - but what you *feel* is the controller...and if the controller feels right it will help your immersion.

I can see where you're coming from better here. For me, the perfect feel for a controller is none at all. If it's well designed and laid out, it should become instinctive, invisible. When I play an FPS with mouse and keyboard, these days it's instinct. The control set works well enough that I simply *think* to look to the right, and the process inbetween is (at the time) seamless.

It's the same with a mobile device, or a computer, or any other electronics I use. It should provide a good base set of tools, a solid set of hardware, and then get the hell out of the way. My love of the N900 wasn't based on it being slick (though it was, in its own way), but more on the sheer brilliance of the available toolset that let me get on and do really cool things with minimum effort.

We're probably coming at the same thing from different angles, but with me devices are 100% about functionality. Looks, feel, and "soul" come waaaaay down the list. ;-)

Greg J Preece

For Apple, Samsung and everyone else, the sales figures bear no relation whatsoever to the quality of the actual device. It's the boom and bust cycle of an industry that's come to be dominated by fashion rather than actual technology or usefulness. It's faddish, shallow trendiness and nothing more or less.

Greg J Preece

Re: Design?

they are crammed full of the nicest things but they do not move or involve me at all. Soulless.


You need to be moved by a phone now? They need to be anthropomorphic? It's a device! It's supposed to provide you with the best hardware possible, and the content you visit through it is supposed to affect you. My Playstation doesn't "move" me*, but the games I play on it might.

*See what I did there, eh, eh, eh?

Google platform cloud now takes PHP apps

Greg J Preece

Re: Seriously, PHP?

Ah, yes, Python. That infuriating language they taught me in University, where I had to import a module just to get proper error messages. Web development in it was so joyful, and yet when I left Uni, it was my PHP knowledge that actually got me a job.

Funny, that.

Apple: ebook price fixing? Nooo, nothing to do with us, no siree

Greg J Preece

Although they've made the argument that stopping Amazon's climb to a potential monopoly is good for competition

Conveniently ignoring iTunes, I'm assuming.

Firefox 21 ships with performance-profiling Health Report

Greg J Preece

Then turn it off?

At least they're being up-front about it, unlike some Chocolate-flavoured browsers. You can easily turn it off, and how many apps that phone home have a big option for you to view the data being sent back?

Android is a mess and needs sprucing up, admits chief

Greg J Preece

Actually, I agree. I have two Android phones (because one of them is waiting for Ubuntu Phone to be ready) and a Windows Phone 7 one, and I will freely admit that the UI on Windows is the best by light years. Honestly, I just don't get why people give the new Windows Phone so much shit. Functionally the original wasn't up to scratch, but if you recall, at a functional level the original iPhone was straight-up retarded. You can slate Metro on a laptop all you like and I'll likely agree, but Windows Phone is crazy fast, great looking and easy to use.

Greg J Preece

Re: Yep, I agree

I have both a Nexus 4 and a Galaxy S3, and if I'm honest, I prefer the S3. The battery lasts longer, it's not slower to any amount that matters, I can open the back of the bloody thing, it has an SD card slot, they both run Android 4, and the screen on the S3 is gorgeous. Plus, the Samsung meddling on the S3 is fairly minimal really.

'Hotmail, since you changed to Outlook, you've been a massive pr**k'

Greg J Preece

Re: Hotmail veteran

There's an Outlook app for Android now, and I've got to be honest, it works way better than the old Hotmail one. For example, swiping left for the folder list and clicking it is much simpler than the old menu > folder list > add folder to sync bollocks that plagued the old app.

'Quantum network? We've had one for years,' says Los Alamos

Greg J Preece

It's not a perfect system. While it's relatively scalable within a locale, the hub and spoke system has inherent disadvantages on very large scales, and the authors acknowledge that if the hub is compromised in any way, the messages are insecure.

So I imagine it's also a bit insecure if the hub were managed by, say, a government authority?

Apple's next OS X said to be targeted at 'power users'

Greg J Preece

Re: forced obsolescence, Apple douchebaggery

And what does that have to do with how easy its is to sell a used Mac? You nevre addressed All you did was tell us how you do real work and how special a snowflake you are.

Given that you can't even spell "Greg", I'm going to assume you can't bloody read either. It isn't about how hard it is to sell a Mac; it's about having to sell the Mac in the first place to get the latest OS when it's an artificial lockout by Apple, and how saying that they hold their value better is weak fanboy justification for that.

I need the latest Mac OS X, regrettably, for work. I can't be ditching my machine and getting a new one every time Apple feel like forcing me to do so. My "real work" point was to illustrate that I can't use the consumer-oriented methods of moving across, and I shouldn't have to either. The Windows OS you deride so easily doesn't make me do this, and neither does Linux.

Would you like that in crayon?

Greg J Preece

Re: forced obsolescence, Apple douchebaggery

Macbook Airs from 2008 are going for around £3-400 on Ebay. That's almost halfway to a new Macbook Air. I know because I just sold one - and there's others going for a similar price.

Except that those original 2008 Macbook Airs sold for thick end of twice the price of the current 11 inch baby ones. Nice try at twisting the numbers, there. What was that about recouping half the cost again? Can you hear me through the reality distortion bubble?

Greg J Preece

Re: forced obsolescence, Apple douchebaggery

How is that hassle? selling your house is hassle, selling a computer isn't.


I know you're an Apple user, but some of us actually do stuff with our machines. I'm a programmer. My machine triple boots, and there's a development environment in each. I've got an extensive number of programs, configurations, customisations and such going on to make that machine usable for what I do. Do you have any notion of how long it takes me to fully set up a new machine? It is not the half hour some people in here are claiming.

Greg J Preece

Re: People moaning about the cost of Apple hardware

People moan about the price of Apple desktop hardware but like anything if you look after it it will last you and provide years of service. You might well call me a mug for buying expensive Apple kit but I'm not on the upgrade treadmill, my boxes get used until they finally die a natural death after long and productive lives

YMMV, naturally. My custom-built desktop lasted me 7 years, and even then it didn't die - I was forced to get rid of what was still a fast, excellent machine. At work, the highest rates of failure/return that we experience come from Apple devices. I'm dead serious! I wouldn't have thought it either, but we've got two hard drive failures, a broken screen, two dead iPhones (plus two smashed ones), and a Macbook that I kept alive for six months through sheer force of will.

Greg J Preece

In my opinion, Dolphin is the best file manager I've used. It's got pretty comprehensive functionality and can be extended/customised to suit (much like the rest of KDE), but if you're a basic user then its standard LAF is easy to grasp. Behaviour is consistent and logical, as are the shortcut keys used to access additional functionality. I'm so used to having all that functionality available that when I use a different (read: inferior) OS like Windows or Mac OS, I get really frustrated at how the companies making them bolt on new whizzy visuals with every release, but never pay any attention to the basic tools that make the system usable.

And of those inferior file managers, Finder is easily the worst. I despise it, and yet it forms the basic file manager of a system that your average punter considers to be the most usable. Probably because marketing bods said so. It's like every time I saw that "world's most advanced smartphone" tag next to the older iPhones. Just because the advert claims that, does not make it so.

Greg J Preece

Re: Could really poke a finger in Microsoft's eye...

Whoops, did I not follow the established "Windows 8 is shit, no exceptions" narrative? Or did I just piss off a few fanbois?

Greg J Preece

Re: Could really poke a finger in Microsoft's eye...

Judging by my own experience and that of everyone I know who has tried, Win 8 is not for the heavy duty content creator, worker, programmer, etc.

Putting aside that I generally use Linux for all my programming, coding on Windows 8 is no harder than it was on 7.

Greg J Preece

Re: forced obsolescence, Apple douchebaggery

It's pretty cost effective to upgrade a Mac by selling it and buying a new one. Unlike the market for used PCs, the market for used Macs is pretty active. It's not uncommon for people to pay half retail for a Mac that's 4-5 years old. I've done this several times.

It's OK that Apple force you to buy unnecessary new hardware, because that hardware isn't quite as exorbitantly expensive if you manage to sell your existing hardware after you've forked out for the new one?

And unlike other OSs, it's stupid easy to transfer your stuff from one Mac to the other. Just clone your drive to an external one or whatever, point a fresh copy of OS X at it, and after about half an hour you won't be able to tell the difference between your new Mac and the old one.

Oh sweet! So it'll transfer my development environment, and my servers, and my VMs, and my Kubuntu partition, and my Windows one?

No? Then perhaps upgrades are a better idea.

Greg J Preece

Holy crap, are they actually going to improve the core functionality of OSX, rather than adding on more and more iOS gimmicks? The next version might actually be worth the upgrade price!

Just adding tabs isn't enough for Finder, though. That just gives you two panels of the worst base file manager of any operating system. And yes, OSX users, I am including Windows Explorer.

Is this the first ever web page? If not, CERN would like to know

Greg J Preece

Re: Um....duh....

<html> tags? Bloody luxury! I'd take a look at the source code for that page. It's not even as advanced as that.

Greg J Preece

You think Yorkshire is rural any more?

You're from London, aren't you?

Greg J Preece

Sometimes I wonder if "progress", really is.

Sometimes I get irritated when people get all wistful about the "good old days"...

Pirates scoff at games dev sim's in-game piracy lesson

Greg J Preece

Perhaps it didn't sell so well because the developer was so obnoxious?

Microsoft to unveil new Xbox console on May 21

Greg J Preece

Re: Exactly WHO do used game sales benefit?

You buy a MP game, it takes up server space, the previous owner also takes up server space, this costs the game publisher.

Exactly how does a person who no longer owns the game "take up space"? They're not going to be using bandwith, CPU resources, etc because they no longer have the game. You're not seriously referring to their profile/account, are you? Are you?? Because that's on the order of kilobytes, and isn't even necessary in the first place unless you're the kind of arse that requires accounts for constant online validation.

Did I have an account when I played the first Tribes game? Did I bollocks.

Opera sues designer for leaking trade secrets to Mozilla

Greg J Preece

So these are ideas that he punted, Opera rejected, and then years later Mozilla accepted? And these are somehow Opera "trade secrets", despite them rejecting the ideas as useful?


PEAK iPHONE? Apple mobe growth slumps to ‘lowest in its history’

Greg J Preece

Re: @RogerThat - Sweet Jesus, dude...

You didn't read my post properly. You need to read my post properly.

Greg J Preece

Re: @RogerThat - Sweet Jesus, dude...

Ha. With deliciously twisted logic great customer service gets transformed into a cynical ploy to reduce workload by getting rid of any customers with a complaint as quickly as possible.

If you're the kind of person that does so little with their smartphone that simply throwing your existing one away and getting a new one is "great customer service", you might be missing the point. (Or you might just be an iPhone user.)

Laptop got an issue? Just throw it away, get a brand new one! That's the responsible thing to do! You won't have to spend days setting everything up again, will you? No chance at all of data loss, ho no. And when the manufacturer reconditions the machine they just took off you, you can totally trust them with the hard drive, right?

Yeah....there' a reason why when I ask for something to be fixed, I want it fixed. And that's to say nothing of the potential environmental repercussions of simply chucking stuff out. A place I know threw out two projectors this week because they were "broken." It took a multimeter, a soldering iron and ten minutes to give us two working projectors.

Peak txt: 1.5 billion more chat app msgs sent than SMSes a day

Greg J Preece

So what about RCS?

Or Joyn, or whatever you want to call it. From what I understand, it's now in public trials on the continent, and even networks in the US are finally cottoning on and getting set up for it. It's not as advanced as any single IM network you could point to, but it does all the important stuff, and at a firmware level. Could it claw back that market share for the networks?

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