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TOPIC: Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights"

Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341106

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Via Evil Avatar.
Plymouth, MI – August 29, 2008 – Stardock announced today the Gamer’s Bill of Rights: a statement of principles that it hopes will encourage the PC game industry to adopt standards that are more supportive of PC gamers. The document contains 10 specific “rights” that video game enthusiasts can expect from Stardock as an independent developer and publisher that it hopes that other publishers will embrace. The Bill of Rights is featured on Stardock’s website (www.stardock.com) and is on prominent display in Stardock’s booth (1142) at the Penny Arcade Expo.“As an industry, we need to begin setting some basic, common sense standards that reward PC gamers for purchasing our games,” stated Brad Wardell, president and CEO of Stardock Corporation. “The console market effectively already has something like this in that its games have to go through the platform maker such as Nintendo, Microsoft, or Sony. But on the PC, publishers can release games that are scarcely completed, poorly supported, and full of intrusive copy protection and then be stuck on it.”Chris Taylor, CEO and founder of Gas Powered Games stated, “This is an awesome framework for the industry to aspire to, and ultimately so that we can provide our customers with the gaming experience that they have wanted for years, and really deserve.”As an example of The Gamer’s Bill of Rights in action, Stardock instituted a policy of allowing users to return copies of The Political Machine purchased at retail to Stardock for a full refund if they found that their PC wasn’t sufficient to run the game adequately.“The PC market loses out on a lot of sales because a significant percentage of our market has PCs that may or may not be adequate to run our games. Without the ability to return games to the publisher for a refund, many potential buyers simply pass on games they might otherwise have bought due to the risk of not being certain a game will work on their PC. The average consumer doesn’t know what ‘pixel shader 2.0 support’ means, for instance,” said Wardell.According to Stardock, the objective of the Gamer’s Bill of Rights is to increase the confidence of consumers of the quality of PC games which in turn will lead to more sales and a better gaming experience.The Gamer’s Bill of Rights:
  • 1. Gamers shall have the right to return games that don’t work with their computers for a full refund.
  • 2. Gamers shall have the right to demand that games be released in a finished state.
  • 3. Gamers shall have the right to expect meaningful updates after a game’s release.
  • 4. Gamers shall have the right to demand that download managers and updaters not force themselves to run or be forced to load in order to play a game.
  • 5. Gamers shall have the right to expect that the minimum requirements for a game will mean that the game will play adequately on that computer.
  • 6. Gamers shall have the right to expect that games won’t install hidden drivers or other potentially harmful software without their consent.
  • 7. Gamers shall have the right to re-download the latest versions of the games they own at any time.
  • 8. Gamers shall have the right to not be treated as potential criminals by developers or publishers.
  • 9. Gamers shall have the right to demand that a single-player game not force them to be connected to the Internet every time they wish to play.
  • 10. Gamers shall have the right that games which are installed to the hard drive shall not require a CD/DVD to remain in the drive to play.
It's a noble idea. What I think is sad is that most of these were already being done by publishers and developers 8 years ago, then they went ass-backwards.Fortschritte, fortschritte!
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341108

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Stardock is so awesome. I just wish they were bigger so they had some more influence. Maybe impulse will help with that...
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341171

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Alright where do I sign to ratify these?
Co-host of Cat & Fox on AllGames.com!

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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341175

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More PC developers need to get together like this and make a united set of regulations for most PC releases. At least for all semi-big games. I like the open market feel to PC gaming, so having all of these requirements for every Diner Dash or indie title that makes it out would be a little much, but most of it is just requiring developers to be less intrusive so all across the board this would make things a million times better.With EA's massive LSD trip induced happy lapse of "innovation over pumping the same shit out all the time", you'd think they'd jump on the chance to make a big comment towards making PC gaming better and better.
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341581

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1. Gamers shall have the right to return games that don’t work with their computers for a full refund.
Its a pain in the ass having to worry about specs, and I'm sure there have been cases, like Christmas presents, of someone buying a game they couldn't play. But for the most part this would be a license to steal.
# 2. Gamers shall have the right to demand that games be released in a finished state.
Ambiguous. Some games just suck know matter how 'finished' they are. And pc gaming's big appeal to both developers and players is patching and DLC.
# 3. Gamers shall have the right to expect meaningful updates after a game’s release.
So a game is supposed to be finished, but then its supposed to be updated. Que? Maybe if a dev promises a bug patch and fails to deliver promptly or not at all.
4. Gamers shall have the right to demand that download managers and updaters not force themselves to run or be forced to load in order to play a game
First, this is just contradicting points two and three. Second, I'd rather have a download manager then run around looking for a zip file to DL just to unzip it and figure out what folders everything goes in. Third, most of the involuntary DLs I see are for online games and that's in place to keep everyone on the same even playing field.
5. Gamers shall have the right to expect that the minimum requirements for a game will mean that the game will play adequately on that computer.
This one seems fair, but minimum and adequate can mean a million different things depending on the game and hardware someones running. And 20 fps for one person might be unacceptable for someone else.
6. Gamers shall have the right to expect that games won’t install hidden drivers or other potentially harmful software without their consent.
Fair, but I haven't seen this in a long time. Then it was only an ad after the game was shut down, or maybe an anti-hacking device like Blizzards Warden software. Truly malicious software, yeah fuck em.
7. Gamers shall have the right to re-download the latest versions of the games they own at any time.
Honestly, this seems more a privilege then a right. Cool that some companies will let us, but they can just as easily tell us to take better care of our shit. If I drop my favorite book in the john, I cant bring it to Barnes and Noble and get a refund.
8. Gamers shall have the right to not be treated as potential criminals by developers or publishers.
As a gamer I have no problem saying gamers are the biggest fucking thieves on the face of the planet. Guy with 200 gigs of stolen music, movies, Photoshop, and porn on his HD? Prolly a gamer too, and if you can steal one piece of digital material, you can prolly steal a bunch of pc titles too. Sorry, shoe fits and we have to wear it. I'd be pissed to if I spent a couple of years developing a game, and people were cracking it a day after it hits the shelves.
9. Gamers shall have the right to demand that a single-player game not force them to be connected to the Internet every time they wish to play.
Pain in the ass, but as long as people continue to copy that floppy, devs have to find ways to keep it in check.
10. Gamers shall have the right that games which are installed to the hard drive shall not require a CD/DVD to remain in the drive to play.
I hate it, on certain games my drive gets louder then a jet taking off, but as long as people continue to copy that floppy, devs have to find ways to keep it in check.Innovation: Devs need it. Enough with the sequels, enough with the fast food fp's. Come up with more creative ideas instead of shitty retreads, and $50 games that take three hours to beat. I don't condone piracy, and think its part of the reason PC gaming and gaming as a whole is kindofa suckfest these days. But it mirrors the music industry, people would rather DL a game now than fork over twenty bucks for an album that is filled with three songs and fifteen shitty skits ( Hai2u Method Man). But if people are just downloading games like Bioshock or whatever, because they just don't feel like paying for it, then ya, that blows.It would be cool if some set of Guidelines existed in pc gaming. A game with rating of 5 could be played on systems also rated 5 or something along those lines. It would be difficult and I think most PC manufacturers would oppose the idea of having their system rated lower then another, but it would be so much better then the guessing game there is now. And devs need to stop making these fucking games like Crysis and Doom 3 that you need a time travel machine into the future just to play. :rolleyes:
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341588

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Its a pain in the ass having to worry about specs, and I'm sure there have been cases, like Christmas presents, of someone buying a game they couldn't play. But for the most part this would be a license to steal.
Yeah someone could abuse it. So what? People can also abuse the return/refund system at walmart. In fact a lot of people do that. Companies shouldn't treat their honest and paying customers like criminals.
So a game is supposed to be finished, but then its supposed to be updated. Que? Maybe if a dev promises a bug patch and fails to deliver promptly or not at all.
Stardock is well known for delivering big, free updates to their games. Especially with galciv 2. But you only get them if you have a serial number(which isnt required for installation or play) it's their way of getting people who pirate the game to actually buy the game.
First, this is just contradicting points two and three. Second, I'd rather have a download manager then run around looking for a zip file to DL just to unzip it and figure out what folders everything goes in. Third, most of the involuntary DLs I see are for online games and that's in place to keep everyone on the same even playing field.
It doesn't contradict any of the points. Stardock is big on people being able to play the game whenever they want and wherever they want. You shouldn't be forced to download something to play a game that isn't online only like Team fortress 2 or an MMO.
Honestly, this seems more a privilege then a right. Cool that some companies will let us, but they can just as easily tell us to take better care of our shit. If I drop my favorite book in the john, I cant bring it to Barnes and Noble and get a refund.
It SHOULD be a right. Blizzard is taking the same approach. Hell, if you own a physical copy of a blizzard game, but you lost the discs or they're broken, or you just want a digital copy, you can download the game from blizzards store for free if you have the serial number. I'm glad that some PC developers are treating their customers right.
As a gamer I have no problem saying gamers are the biggest fucking thieves on the face of the planet. Guy with 200 gigs of stolen music, movies, Photoshop, and porn on his HD? Prolly a gamer too, and if you can steal one piece of digital material, you can prolly steal a bunch of pc titles too. Sorry, shoe fits and we have to wear it. I'd be pissed to if I spent a couple of years developing a game, and people were cracking it a day after it hits the shelves.
So what? If I paid for the game then they shouldn't treat ME like I stole it. DRM does nothing. It does absolutely nothing but hurt the people who paid for the game. With stardock games you can play them without a CD or a serial number because they have no copy protection. Yeah that makes it 'easier' to pirate, but that doesn't matter because either way those people would illegally download the game. If they do they might be more likely to purchase a game because of the free updates that Stardock puts out.
Pain in the ass, but as long as people continue to copy that floppy, devs have to find ways to keep it in check.
Don't defend asshole companies who have shitty DRM like that.
I hate it, on certain games my drive gets louder then a jet taking off, but as long as people continue to copy that floppy, devs have to find ways to keep it in check.
So you're saying that having the game check for a disc in the drive actually helps stop piracy? Bullshit. It hurts people like us who buy the game and don't want to download a no cd crack. it doesn't stop anyone who downloads it from thepiratebay.I completely agree with Stardock. I've agreed with their DRM/copy protection policy ever since I first heard about it when galciv 2 was released.Sorry if there any grammatical errors...I'm tired and don't feel like checking what I typed. When I'm tired i have a tendency to make weird ass grammatical errors.
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341597

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Oh Nutman, you spoony bard. I wish Arandar was unbanned, then you could really have a chance to flex that big old debate brain of yours. Then again, if Arandar had posted in this thread it would turned into an argument about how much he hates gummi bears or some shit.Since this is Stardocks policy, yeah that's pretty sweet of em. But as a general view of gamers rights it looks like a big cryfest to me. I hate having to deal with anti piracy methods like everyone else, especially since I haven't pirated anything since the Napster Summer of Love, but its bad apples spoiling it for everyone else.
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341624

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I only did the point-by-point quote+reply because thats what you did. ;)
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Stardock's "Gamer's Bill of Rights" 11 years 2 months ago #341642

I only pirate games that I want to make sure they run well (especially okay if the game has multiplayer, ala Crysis. You can't pirate the game and play the multiplayer, so that made me buy it), or to get a copy of a game that I've broken/lost (MP, MP2, UT).
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