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  1. #61
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    Valve is an industry darling because Valve practically runs the industry.
    Then tell them to stop the goddamn regional pricing nonsense! In all seriousness they don't run the industry, whether practically or not. If they did, arguably things would be better (even if we'd be living in GabeN's walled garden of digital amusements). But they don't. They're the industry darlings because they hold massive sales and made Half Life, as well as maintain a generally friendly and approachable presence with the community. Except in cases like this.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    People want to burn Origin because it's EA.
    Fixed that for you, because that was the principle complaint - it's from EA and it's not Steam.

  2. #62
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Then tell them to stop the goddamn regional pricing nonsense!
    And lose Russia?

    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    In all seriousness they don't run the industry, whether practically or not. If they did, arguably things would be better (even if we'd be living in GabeN's walled garden of digital amusements).
    It's a garden, for sure, but it isn't walled. That said, Steam has a plurality of all PC gaming distribution. That sounds to me like they have the industry wrapped around their finger. You can already see the results of their influence: A resurgence of non-AAA developers who are working to revitalize non-manshoot genres (albeit under a heavy dose of hipsterism and faux-retro flair). As to how they got that way, you make it sound like a "bread and circuses" thing where we're all fooled into complacency. No, they're the leader because they offer the best service, hands down.

    We need people to hold their feet to the fire, but this sort of snobbery is at present unfounded.

    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Fixed that for you, because that was the principle complaint - it's from EA and it's not Steam.
    For fuck's sake, it's because there is nothing Origin does that Steam doesn't do and often does better. Guess what? I bought the flagship products for Origin. I own Mass Effect 3 and Battlefield 3. I briefly owned Syndicate. But all Origin has done for me was add a layer of bullshit when I already have one, thank you.

    So yeah, it's EA, and y'know what? EA sucks.
    Last edited by Nalano; 15-02-2013 at 02:53 AM.
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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  3. #63
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    And lose Russia?
    PR vodka for everyone! Start your enemas!

    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    It's a garden, for sure, but it isn't walled. That said, Steam has a plurality of all PC gaming distribution. That sounds to me like they have the industry wrapped around their finger.
    Whenever I make a similar point I get shouted down that Valve/Steam isn't controlling anything and isn't cornering the market and blah blah no get out. The wall is lower than it has been with the introduction of Greenlight but Valve are still the gatekeepers and despite what they've been saying I don't think they'll ever relinquish that role.

    That said, I do agree in part that Valve have a significant portion of the industry wrapped around their finger, by virtue of being the PC distribution platform of choice to the point where we have cries of "No Steam, no sale!" while making DRM not only acceptable, but endorsed. But I don't think it works in quite the way you propose here.

    Not sure what your snobbery comment is about, clearly my response is somewhat tongue-in-cheek and despite my criticisms of Valve I do still think Steam is one of the best things to happen in gaming for a long time, but it's still Valve's show which they run as they please.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    So yeah, it's EA, and y'know what? EA sucks.
    When Steam first came out the same arguments were raised, and Steam was terrible for many years after it first showed up. Valve forced us all onto the platform by closing down WON. EA starts their own platform, does the same thing, and people act like it's the most horrible thing in the world. Go figure.

  4. #64
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Whenever I make a similar point I get shouted down that Valve/Steam isn't controlling anything and isn't cornering the market and blah blah no get out. The wall is lower than it has been with the introduction of Greenlight but Valve are still the gatekeepers and despite what they've been saying I don't think they'll ever relinquish that role.
    They're gatekeepers to Steam, for sure, and the No Steam No Sale folks are also snobs, indeed, but getting past Valve's QA team is shitloads easier than getting past the wall of traditional publishers - for starters, it costs less - and a net boon for gaming overall.

    Steam DRM is hailed as a necessary evil, as it's largely kept the really nasty shit off our collective backs, Ubisoft notwithstanding. I, for one, remember shit that knocked out drivers for CD burners and bluescreened your PC.

    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    When Steam first came out the same arguments were raised, and Steam was terrible for many years after it first showed up. Valve forced us all onto the platform by closing down WON. EA starts their own platform, does the same thing, and people act like it's the most horrible thing in the world. Go figure.
    Being the first has its perks. As is being the best. When I suffer an install from Time Warner, I don't want to also suffer an install from Cablevision just to get three extra channels.
    Last edited by Nalano; 15-02-2013 at 03:20 AM.
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  5. #65
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    They're gatekeepers to Steam, for sure, and the No Steam No Sale folks are also snobs, indeed, but getting past Valve's QA team is shitloads easier than getting past the wall of traditional publishers - for starters, it costs less - and a net boon for gaming overall.
    That's true of course, but by "traditional publishers" do you just mean distribution deals, or "help fund my game" because Valve don't do the latter... they just buy out your team to make more hats! *runs*

    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    I, for one, remember shit that knocked out drivers for CD burners and bluescreened your PC.
    Yes, same here. And Steam is one of the least intrusive forms of DRM around. But it's still DRM.
    Last edited by soldant; 15-02-2013 at 03:54 AM. Reason: Roar! - id Software.

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post


    Fixed that for you, because that was the principle complaint - it's from EA and it's not Steam.
    You are proof that rebranding works.

    Origin has been around for a LOOOOOOONG time, it was called EADM.

    I have several bad experiences with EADM and their customer support, some of us just hate origin because it's shit.
    Them trying to bribe people into liking it with a few free games isn't going to change that.

    Also when people say 'no steam, no sale' it's almost always in the context of 'I don't want to deal with Uplay/origin.
    DRM-less games are still much preferable to steamworks, Uplay and origin are not.
    Last edited by Finicky; 16-02-2013 at 06:02 AM.

  7. #67
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus mashakos's Avatar
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    interview with jeri ellsworth:
    http://www.twitch.tv/jenesee/b/328895114

    can't think of a good reason why she was let go, other than maybe Valve has completed reference designs and is sticking to farming out the designs to partners...
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  8. #68
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mashakos View Post
    can't think of a good reason why she was let go, other than maybe Valve has completed reference designs and is sticking to farming out the designs to partners...
    I can think of one - they had no place for her. Valve isn't a charity, they can't employ people just for the hell of it and hoping that they'll be useful later on.

  9. #69
    Lesser Hivemind Node ado's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    I can think of one - they had no place for her. Valve isn't a charity, they can't employ people just for the hell of it and hoping that they'll be useful later on.
    Yep, Gabe has said time and time again that people have trouble adapting, and that in this open company structure it takes time to figure out who's a good fit and who is not. I find it quite ridiculous that people are making a big fuss over this issue. They're big names? So is everyone else at Valve when you think about it.
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  10. #70
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Zephro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    When Steam first came out the same arguments were raised, and Steam was terrible for many years after it first showed up. Valve forced us all onto the platform by closing down WON. EA starts their own platform, does the same thing, and people act like it's the most horrible thing in the world. Go figure.
    Well the law in technology circles is that it doesn't matter who did it first it's whoever does it best at the time. If you do something badly but you're the only one doing it, then you win. If you turn up late and do something the same as or just slightly worse than what's already on the market people won't shift.

    Origin can only win in this situation if it provides something "better" than steam. Just doing it the same with a restricted catalog and higher prices means they'll never get market penetration. Not that I'm saying EA are evil, they're just stupid.

  11. #71
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ado View Post
    Yep, Gabe has said time and time again that people have trouble adapting, and that in this open company structure it takes time to figure out who's a good fit and who is not. I find it quite ridiculous that people are making a big fuss over this issue. They're big names? So is everyone else at Valve when you think about it.
    Soldant's talking about specialized skillsets being retained when there's no projects that require them.

    You're talking about individuals failing to cope with corporate culture.

    These are not the same thing.
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  12. #72
    Lesser Hivemind Node ado's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    Soldant's talking about specialized skillsets being retained when there's no projects that require them.

    You're talking about individuals failing to cope with corporate culture.

    These are not the same thing.
    And? That somehow makes his or my comment less valid?

    The truth is we do not know why these people where laid off and there is a good chance we will never know. What soldant is saying, and what I am agreeing with, is that these people did not work out for Valve as a company and that they cannot employ people out of charity.
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  13. #73
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ado View Post
    And? That somehow makes his or my comment less valid?
    One puts the blame on the employee, the other does not.

    People in this thread are very caught up in the idea that these people were fired rather than laid off. Soldant was giving an example as to how this is a relatively benign restructuring, and as such does not reflect badly on Valve - "how could they get rid of such an important talented employee?" - or the recently laid-off - "what did they do to get the boot?"
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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  14. #74
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus mashakos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    I can think of one - they had no place for her.
    you have basically repeated what I said O.o
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  15. #75
    Lesser Hivemind Node ado's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    One puts the blame on the employee, the other does not.
    Maybe, but it could very well be the case that some if not all of those individuals didn't manage to cope with or adapt to Valve's flat corporate structure.
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  16. #76
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ado View Post
    Maybe, but it could very well be the case that some if not all of those individuals didn't manage to cope with or adapt to Valve's flat corporate structure.
    99% of employees have to cope with whatever happens to keep them fed and indoors. Hothouse flowers often go by another term: The unemployable.
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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  17. #77
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mashakos View Post
    you have basically repeated what I said O.o
    Sorry. It'll happen again. :P
    But really you answered your own question with the most likely answer repeated many times in this thread... so why ask? :)

    Quote Originally Posted by ado View Post
    Yep, Gabe has said time and time again that people have trouble adapting, and that in this open company structure it takes time to figure out who's a good fit and who is not.
    I think it's all a load of nonsense, to be honest. The entire Valve corporate culture seems somewhat flimsy to me, because clearly there's still some control to be able to turn around and say "Sorry, we don't have any place for you" or "You screwed up by eating Gabe's chocolates, pack up your shit and get out." The entire "trouble adapting" thing seems a bit ridiculous to me. Not that I'm criticising (well, maybe I am but I don't mean to do so) because Valve do get things done (eventually... many years late... or sometimes not at all for all we know) to a high standard, so something works. But I'm becoming less interested in what Gabe has to say, particularly with what Valve is up to. It seems like a load of weasel words lately.

    Quote Originally Posted by ado View Post
    I find it quite ridiculous that people are making a big fuss over this issue. They're big names? So is everyone else at Valve when you think about it.
    I don't necessarily think that people are making a fuss over someone getting dismissed, because it's Valve (and Valve can't do anything wrong apparently) and because people understand that these things happen. It seems likely that the employees dismissed were about as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike which were hired when the motorbike was actually a car. Nothing wrong with that. What some of us (including myself) wonder about is why it has to be some big secret that Valve dismissed them. They don't necessarily have to give a reason, but when someone has very obviously been dismissed and Gabe turns around and says "YOU SAW NOTHING" it seems a bit odd. No, they're not under any obligation to tell us. But for a dev/company that prides itself on community interaction it's a strange move. Valve can be so good at community interactions and also so laughably inept.

  18. #78
    Lesser Hivemind Node internetonsetadd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    What some of us (including myself) wonder about is why it has to be some big secret that Valve dismissed them. They don't necessarily have to give a reason, but when someone has very obviously been dismissed and Gabe turns around and says "YOU SAW NOTHING" it seems a bit odd. No, they're not under any obligation to tell us. But for a dev/company that prides itself on community interaction it's a strange move. Valve can be so good at community interactions and also so laughably inept.
    While the relatively large number makes it somewhat unlikely, if Valve were unhappy with the staff they laid off, saying so publicly would obviously be a terrible idea. If the reason was strategic, disclosing it to their enemies wouldn't be too bright either.

    A standard policy of not addressing specific "personnel matters" generally seems like a reasonable and prudent thing to do. Burning a whole swath of former employees by declaring their projects failures wouldn't have been the classiest move seeing as they all need to find new jobs.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm curious as hell. I'd really like Ellsworth to spill all her bitter feelings.

  19. #79
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    But for a dev/company that prides itself on community interaction
    I dunno what Valve you're talking about, because this one does not interact with the community directly.
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  20. #80
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by internetonsetadd View Post
    While the relatively large number makes it somewhat unlikely, etc (give us a reason)
    I'm not necessarily saying they need to give us a reason (I actually mentioned that) but to not even acknowledge that they left on any terms is ridiculous.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    I dunno what Valve you're talking about, because this one does not interact with the community directly.
    They do. I have an email around here somewhere from Robin Walker which I got from around the time when the Medic update came out and they accidentally reset all my achievements (when someone found console commands to unlock them). I sent one back saying thank you even though they'd never read it. Robin replied and said they printed it and stuck it on a wall. Don't know if that last bit happened but they definitely do interact with the community quite a bit and like to talk to people.

    Except about business, where they're as opaque as a lead wall, and sometimes about their failures. Which again isn't always a bad thing, but in a case like this when we know people have left Valve for whatever reason issuing a statement which is basically saying "No, we're just going to ignore this, we're not going to say if anyone left or not" is a bit silly.

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