Former design director for Epic Games, Cliff ‘Cliffy B’ Bleszzzzinski, has written a typically candid blog on used games and the Xbox One u-turn. In it he admits that “Microsoft tried to and ultimately couldn’t have it both ways.” Cliff had some 140 character opinions on used games that evidently caused him enough backlash to want to expand at length, and concluded by saying that Steam is amazing and PCs, mobile and tablets will be the future.
On his blog Clifford Unchained (should we call him Clifford? I always have a nervous breakdown with people’s nicknames and whether to use them), the man whose last name I have the most trouble spelling ever, and will probably never be able to spell, Cliff… Blezzinszki, gives some context to his thoughts on how much he feels the used games market has hurt him personally, with much reference to Gamestop – particularly a leaflet that was handed out at the Gears 3 launch that suggested consumers should trade in soon after buying. “We had done a lot of work to keep the disc in tray, but those retail practices are deliberately set up to create a revolving door of game trade in,” he says.
Cliff Blessinki then goes on to evangelize Steam as being a better way to do things than Microsoft had suggested with the Xbox One. “I’ll admit, the once every 24 hour check was pretty silly. Customers can smell from a mile away when you’re treating them like children, peeking your head into their bedroom on a regular basis in an attempt to catch them doing something.
“Here’s the thing about Steam. It doesn’t FORCE you to be online. The ecosystem of Steam is so brilliant, from the community, to the summer sales, to the indie games, that you WANT to get online,” Blazinsski says.
Though Steam is creepy and does look over you shoulder, it does give you the option of offline play (even if sometimes my personal Steam account refuses to let me do that due to updates sometimes) and it’s built on a community participation that’s always been much better structured than anything on consoles.
Bles – CLIFF then goes on to say:
“My money is on the PC, mobile and tablets for the near future. I wandered around E3 looking at (too many) fantastic games shaking my head and worrying about how many are going to be deemed a failure due to the fact that yes, it may have sold 4 million copies, but it cost too much to make and market, so it was a wash. (Do your homework, several very high profile games have had this issue and no, I’m not going to call them out here.)”
Cliff’s awesome: he may have rash outbursts of opinions, but he’s always having them in public, and being candid and entertaining about it. If only Peter Mollynew blogged regularly. I would read that. I bet it would have chickens.