Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Activision Rant

I can’t help but feel disgust for Activision lately. Every couple of months or so, my trust is just shaken by them, and most of it revolves around Call of Duty. There’s no denying that Modern Warfare has changed the way multiplayer is played, not only for first person shooters, but all multiplayer. The perk system is excellent; a player gains “levels” through a numbered rank, and rewards of new guns and class modifiers. It keeps the player interested in multiplayer longer than the previous multiplayer iterations, because they’re constantly being rewarded and thus want to keep playing. It brings longevity to the game, and certainly brings a bang for the buck value. Modern Warfare 2 is the height of the series right now, it just plays fluently and certainly feels how a first person shooter should…when it works.

The multiplayer of Modern Warfare 2 is broken. It sounds extreme I know, but it’s true. Every couple of weeks there’s a new glitch that just utterly breaks the game to the point of unplayability. First, there was the ridiculous Javelin glitch, which made people into suicide bombers. Second, there was the Infinite Ammo glitch, which was actually quite fun, but it messed up the stat boards. Then, there was the Unlimited Care Package Glitch.

I understand that every game has glitches, but I can’t help but feel that some of these glitches could have been avoided if there was a beta for the multiplayer. I don’t know if it was Infinity Ward or Activision that dropped the ball, but I’m sure Activision had a hand in it since they treat the IP as a holy artifact.

This is really where Activision gets ridiculous and disgusts me.
"I was disappointed not to see any sort of aggressive price cutting," Kotick said. "Of all the things that the hardware companies need to be doing right now, it's recognizing the difficulties of the economy and pricing their hardware appropriately."
Activision’s CEO, Bobby Kotick, wants console hardware prices to come down because of the economy so that they’re priced appropriately. However, two months later, he then turns around and wants to raise software prices! He’s getting his software price raise through downloadable content as I see it, because Activision is charging $15 for their new Modern Warfare 2 Stimulus Package. Sure it contains 5 new maps for multiplayer, but 2 of them are imported over from Modern Warfare 1, and they don’t even work properly. Bobby, you want hardware to be priced appropriately, well how about pricing your software appropriately!

I’m just done with Activision, they’ve become what the old Electronic Arts was, money grubbing whores. I won’t be buying anymore Activision games. Unfortunately, this won’t really hurt Activision’s wallet, because Modern Warfare 2 is such a juggernaut and one of the best selling games of all time. What really worries me though is that one of my favorite developers, Blizzard Entertainment, is now a partner of Activision. By continuing support for Blizzard by buying their games, I’m also supporting Activision in the long run, which really sucks.
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