Editor's Corner: It Is Your Destiny to Pay For Things Before You Get Them
Posted on Tuesday, August 12 @ 18:30:00 PST by Daniel Bischoff
Activision and Bungiesent word today that GameStop has reported Destiny as the most preordered "new IP in history" with a new competitive multiplayer trailer to complement the news. With the title on hand at gamescom 2014 and potentially another beta between now and launch in September, it's no wonder the game gets another Editor's Corner topic.
We already covered the extensive budget and marketing effort to the tune of six figures and while the beta felt entertaining, responsive, and as coined by no one yet because how could anyone make these comparisons... but just-like-Halo. That's OK! That's the point. I actually like Halo's grenades, melee, and various firepower so the fact that Bungie has made grenades into magic abilities and shotguns into laser rifles works for me.
While there were relatively few missions to go out on in the early test, more often than not I felt like I had something to do even if I wasn't pleased that so much energy could be poured into a single shooter video game. Still, Bungie has a pedigree and a history for entertaining gameplay.
While news of these preorder numbers often drive sales even further up the wall, everyone should take a second to think about whether or not they really need to run out to buy a product before they've actually received it or when weeks wait between this pre-purchase and the actual release. People could learn from the actual, physical, mental, retail experience of exchanging money for something they want if they take the time to understand it and the reality of it all.
If you head to your local GameStop and walk through the front door you'll find an employee, possibly two. You might buy a video game, you might not, but if you go to the counter you'll likely be asked to preorder something and if you do you can pay the entire game off at the register months, possibly years before release.
Doing so gives you this sense that you're even more entitled to an opinion it's impossible for you to have formed already, especially given the way you've bought and paid to have one. I'd like to hear it so share it in the comments below if you'd like.
Anyway, when you leave GameStop and you have your little folded up receipt that you just paid $60 for I think it gives away something that used to be so satisfying. I said it at E3 2014 when I purposefully did not play Sunset Overdrive (and explained why). We work for what little we truly want in our lives. Most of what we need could be available freely and without much struggle between men, women, or the creatures that live in all of our environments and then we make it into one by wanting things more than we need to.
All of life makes its way to us and the same is true of Destiny's September 9th launch date. What could possibly make that worse at this point? More trailers? More promotion? More hands-on impressions? I'm incredibly impressed when I speak with kids who are playing video games and they can talk about a game at length, at detail, with patience. It tells me that the medium does a great deal to help people of all ages and backgrounds, though I think a lot of consumers should carry that receipt with a mind for investment.
Making video games a family-focused activity will help both the medium and some of the more violent themes relatable. Often, I play video games and get sucked into the narrative or the more nuanced activities that bring the world alive around you. Still, without context most of video gaming seems focused on violence, vectors (hello first-person shooter market), and competition.
I think a lot can be said about video gaming's ability to jump start discussions, especially considering the inherent ability to impart a sense of responsibility in the simple inclusion of activity as a measure of time compared to a passive activity like watching TV or listening to music.
You could say that gaming's effect on the brain increases the potential for reflex control or other reactive and intuitive abilities we all share as humans, but I would make the argument that even more should be done to get gamers to emote when playing a piece of interactive software.
Narratives need to be stronger, with more of an emphasis on the human condition as opposed to the condition of someone so far and distant from our every day lives. I would say that procedurally generating things around the player would lead to better experiences except that most of what I've seen in that has been limited to less than thrilling possibilities where much of what you do is repeated endlessly.
Still, the rhythm of daily life lends itself to both games and repetitive tasks. More people should convince people at their office to play games where they share time spent on a daily basis and in that way dig deeper into games. It could totally bypass the need to pay for something else in advance.
Next time you walk into the store with or without a kid, with or without the intention of preordering, think about it and consider whether or not you want to pay the entire game off well before launch when there could be delays.
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