Your Corporate Shill is Showing (A response to Bill Maher)

It’s so weird to me to see how my opinion of what was once one of my favorite comedians shift so sharply in recent years.  It’s genuinely awe-inspiring.  Time was, this guy was the voice of a movement.  The left had this big comedian who had big name draw and could speak truth to power.  It was great stuff.  He could go after religion so sharply.  He fought against the regressive left and their ideas that Islam should be a protected class of people.  Or how political correctness is fucking over comedy.  He went up against titans.  But those days seem to be long gone.

Now, Bill Maher is all about shitting on the youth.  Shitting on the future of the Democrat Party.  Why?  Because they don’t want to accept corporatists.  Because they have standards and refuse to just accept these corporate tools who want to shovel more of the same when we are TIRED of this game.  A lot of people give people like me shit because I REFUSE to vote for a candidate I don’t believe in.  I won’t participate in lesser-of-two-evils voting.  That’s how we got Trump.  The orange monkey in office is 30 years of lesser-of-two-evils voting coming home to roost.

In his most recent New Rules segment, Maher decided to go after Millennials again by saying that we need to stop saying no to corporatist candidates.  We need to just accept a candidate, no matter how much of a tool they are.  After all, Kamala Harris isn’t so bad.  She’s a complete corporate drone who is against legalizing marijuana (how is Bill Maher on her side with that in mind?  He’s been one of the biggest proponents of legalization, so why is he suddenly in her corner?  Oh right, he’s a corporate shill too.  Never mind), but so what?  She’s been recorded at events for banks talking about beating the poor with a stick.  Whatever.

Or with Beto O’Rourke, he takes oil money.  So what?  He’s a Texan, after all!  Yeah, except we want a candidate who actually cares about the environment and the Green New Deal.  Maybe a candidate taking oil money, when they have a vested interest in continuing to fuck up the planet is a bad thing?  Just a thought.

Oh, and the bit about Elizabeth Warren with the Native American thing.  Yeah, that was pretty stupid, of her and Trump.  The whole thing made both of them look like idiots.  But that isn’t why people like me refuse to support her.  It’s because she’s said that she isn’t in support of universal healthcare or that she kissed Shillary’s ring before to try and cozy up to the establishment.  Makes me question her motives.

Then he actually had something nice to say about Bernie, going after that point that there was abuse allegations during his campaign with some of his staff.  Well, he didn’t know about that, and I am all for Bill defending him on it.  In fact, Bernie is my go-to so far.  Though, he hasn’t announced.  That is leaving me wondering what’s going on.  His silence with 2020 around the corner and the time being now that people are already starting to campaign is weird, to me.

I notice that Bill had nothing to say about Tulsi Gabbard.  Oh right, he’s nothing but a tool of the mainstream media, and they DESPISE that woman.  Why?  Because she’s against the military industrial complex and wants to bring our troops home.  She doesn’t believe in interventionist wars in the Middle East.  She wants to bring universal healthcare to this country and is all for the Green New Deal, which Maher’s corporate owners are against.  That woman embodies everything that Maher’s benefactors and now Maher himself stands against.  So naturally, when talking about the Democrat candidates, he has nothing to say about her.  That might make him too much like a liberal.  Something we all know that Maher isn’t.  No, now he’s a centrist corporate drone.  To come so far, only to fall.  Well done, Bill.

Finally, Maher shits on millennials again, taking the time to call them weak and saying that they have no real problems.  I find the strategy of shitting on those who are supposed to stand with you really interesting.  We’re seeing, more and more, that liberals are not just accepting the same old shit.  We want something new, and will give those who refuse to give it to us and fight against us the one-finger salute all the way to the polls.  Or rather, staying at home while they wonder where their base went.  You’d think the strategy would be to try and reason with the millennials, saying that it is frustrating that there are so few genuinely liberal candidates running, but that we should at least hold the line.  But nope!  Fuck millennials, because fuck Trump.  A strategy that I can virtually guarantee they are going to take with them to the campaign if a corporate Democrat wins again, and it won’t work.  They know it won’t work, so the media is doing everything they can in this Trump-mania Blitzkrieg that is desperate to get the millennials on their side.

Maher, you haven’t had to worry about anything that millennials do for 40 years.  You’re an old partisan hack who shits on the people who are saddled with mountains of debt because everyone told us when we were young to get degrees, and who are about to inherit a planet that is fucking dying.  But please, shit on us a little more.  I’m sure that is going to get even more millennials to come to your banners.  I’m sure that the Democrats are going to win big by telling their base to fuck off.  I’m sure that they are going to rally the country with another corporate tool.  Let’s try that again and see what happens.

“Have I ever told you the definition of insanity?” – Vas Montenegro, Far Cry 3

Peace out,

Maverick

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Judge Says Cops Have No Legal Obligation to “Protect and Serve”

For those of you who didn’t know, I’ve been following the aftermath of the school shooting in Parkland with some interest.  In that story, there was the cowardly deputy Scot Peterson who stood outside and did NOTHING while 16 children were killed by a gunman.  I find this man to be such a disgusting human being, but here’s the thing – I don’t find him to be an anomaly.  I think that that loser is representative of cops.  There are SO many stories of cops killing people’s pets, attacking people and then trying to plant evidence on them (like the cop who shot a man several times in the back as he was running away and tried to plant his taser on him, then got filmed doing it) and robbing people that they know can’t fight back in court.

It seems, now, that the courts have also backed up my opinion.  How’s that?  Well, get a load of this.  According to Judge Beth Bloom, the cops who refused to do ANYTHING while children were being gunned down were well within their rights.  Here’s a neat little tidbit from the article that just blew my fucking mind –

“Neither the Constitution, nor state law, impose a general duty upon police officers or other governmental officials to protect individual persons from harm — even when they know the harm will occur,” said Darren L. Hutchinson, a professor and associate dean at the University of Florida School of Law. “Police can watch someone attack you, refuse to intervene and not violate the Constitution.”

There are no words.  No words at all.  It’s unbelievable.  So the cops can, legally, stand outside like gutless cowards and they didn’t do anything wrong?!  Are you fucking kidding me?!  So all the schools that employ security are just paying really expensive decorations?  Is that what I’m to take away from all this?!  Because that sure as hell is how it reads.  An actual federal judge just codified this!  There’s now legal precedence saying that cops don’t have to do what their vaunted slogan say – protect and serve.

So what are cops obligated to do?  Well, they can kill your pets.  They can do unlawful search and seizures.  They can steal from you.  They can sexually assault you and have an internal review system protect them.  They can straight-up murder you and also have an internal review system to protect them.  Does that sound like hyperbole?  Well, it would be, except we’ve seen ALL of those things happen!

What’s the takeaway from this?  I guess it’s that if you are a student and your school comes under attack – run!  The security has no legal obligation to protect you, and there’s no good reason to expect that they will.  None.  We’ve seen four gutless cowards in Parkland, one of whom was posted there for this very reason do nothing.  I don’t think it’s smart to assume other cops are any better in this regard.

I feel so bad for all the families whose children were taken from them because of gutless cowards with badges who didn’t do a goddamn thing.  And we now know that in the future, when this happens again (because it fucking will.  This country doesn’t do jack-shit to change anything so it is gonna happen again), not to expect security personnel to be more than window-dressing that the school districts pay money that could go to hiring more teachers.  And it makes that teacher who gave his life to save as many children as he could by taking bullets that much more of a hero.  Because all he could give to those kids was his life, and he did it.

Guess expecting that level of diligence from police really is asking too fucking much.

Until next time, a quote,

“Courage of the heart is very rare.  The stone has a power when it’s there.” – Nicodemus, The Secret of NIMH

Peace out,

Maverick

MAPs and the Piggy-Backing of LGBT by Pedophiles

Have you heard of MAPs?  I hadn’t either, until Shoe0nHead did a video about them.  This is a disgusting subculture that I wish I hadn’t been exposed to, but now I have.  A MAP is a Minor Attracted Person.  It’s a PC term created by and for pedophiles so they don’t have to be called pedophiles, which rightfully has a negative connotation.  The new goal of pedophiles is to get themselves included in the LGBT movement and to try and get liberals onboard their “tolerance” wagon.  I find this morally reprehensible, and think this is a disgusting tactic by people who do not and will not EVER be accepted by society.  For good fucking reason.

Here’s an ugly fact of the LGBT movement.  For the longest time, one of the big conservative talking points was that they want to have sex with children.  That a gay man is just a pedophile who wants to have sex with your children.  That was the insult that was used by those who hated gay people (almost exclusively men.  Even in the Bible, as gay women aren’t mentioned, we know that they found lesbians hot.  Gotta love Christian bigotry) to help turn the general public against them.  There are old Christian videos that you can find telling people that a gay man is a secret pedophile and that your children are in danger.  The Bible Reloaded (back when they were good) did a Chick Tract video about one such that addressed this in a horribly demeaning way.  The historical argument trying to connect homosexuality to pedophilia is a tragic part of our history that hopefully can be forgotten.

At least, that’s what I would say.  It is more than a little disgusting that now the child-fuckers are trying to get their name attached to this movement.  You’d think that they would find it maybe a little tactless, given the historical connotation and how there are plenty of people who still use that argument to this day.  But wait, they want to have sexual relations with children.  I don’t expect tact from these people.  I expect nothing even approaching decency from them.  Not one little bit.  Do I sound prejudiced?  I suppose I do.

Well, here’s the thing – I am prejudiced.  I have nothing but loathing and contempt for pedophiles.  If you’re the kind of person who has sex with children or wants to have sex with children, I hate you.  I think you are disgusting.  I have never and will never encourage violence against anyone, but if you decide that your disgusting life isn’t worth living anymore, I won’t feel bad.  So many people in my life have been touched by sexual assault as children.  A former girly-mate was exploited by her skating coach and fondled, repeatedly.  Another girly-mate was raped, for years, by a family member as a small child.  A dude-mate I know was sexually assaulted by a bishop, and his family didn’t believe him when he told them.  One of my dearest friends had their first sexual contact when an adult forced them to blow him.  So yeah, my sympathy for people who want to have sex with children does not exist.  Period.  It isn’t here, or there, or anywhere.  Ever.

But I guess this plan of theirs is partially working.  There are people on the regressive left that I see coming out and defending them, and calling anyone who thinks that pedophiles are disgusting human beings Nazis.  What’s more, I saw one guy say that because in antiquity, people had sex with minors, that should validate it today.  Yeah, and there were slaves in antiquity too.  But this country had a big war about how that was wrong.  Morons.  It blows my mind.  Though, these are the same people who defend Islam, even though its text-based misogyny is all over the place, in addition to radical Muslim cultures.  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

Not much more to say, really.  I just love that pedophiles are starting a PR war for their cause, and it seems in part that some sects of far-left culture are willing to step up to the plate.  But thankfully, the LGBT community that I know isn’t having it.  I’m glad.  These people have had to deal with enough without a bunch of disgusting perverts trying to get in on their action.  I consider myself a very open person.  I try to see all kinds of points of view.  But I will NEVER consider a pedophile a good person.  Not today, not tomorrow, not ever.  Wanting to have sex with children is exactly where I draw the line.  It’s where any decent person would.

For all the pedophiles who keep your urges in check and have never harmed a kid, congratulations.  Not being sarcastic, I am legit proud.  But if you think I will be your ally to promote “tolerance” of your disgusting urges, check that at the door.  Not EVER.

Until next time, a quote,

“I’m fed up with this world!” – Johnny, The Room

Peace out,

Maverick

Bad PR 120: EA, Battlefield V, and Not Learning From History

There’s a golden lesson to be learned in PR – don’t make the same mistakes that others in the field have done.  It’s not hard.  So many people don’t learn this lesson, and it baffles me every time.  You’d think, in the age of online connectivity, learning from the mistakes that others have made would be easy.  You can see, in real time and archived, the history of the Internet and the horrible decisions other companies have made.  Which brings me to EA, and their absolute ignorance of history and them choosing to die on a hill that we’ve seen others die on.  I speak of course of their tripling-down on the historical inaccuracies in Battlefield V and deciding to make this a big gender issue.

Don’t know what I’m talking about?  Well, in the big reveal trailer for their now-tanking latest entry in the Battlefield franchise, ostensibly set in WWII, we see a British female soldier, with a prosthetic arm.  For a franchise that touts itself as historically accurate, this caught a lot of people’s attention.  Not to mention the male soldier with a katana on his back.  That was just stupid.  When it was pointed out to EA that this is historical fiction at its worst, they didn’t take it well.

The now-former EA CEO told people that if they don’t like that, “don’t buy it.”  Guess they should have given people other advice, because the game is doing so bad that they have cut it by 50% after only two weeks of it being out.  Ouch.  The disrespect for their fans didn’t end there.  Instead of just admitting that they totally are fucking over history here, EA decided that they would double-down on this, saying that it is totally historically accurate, and those who don’t believe that are “ignorant.”

I love that video game publisher can’t do research that a bachelor’s degree journalism grad can do.  A little history – there were women assisting the military in Britain, but there were NO women on the frontlines of British forces.  None.  There were women serving in World War II, but it wasn’t in Britain.  It was in Russia.  Stalin is a horrible person, but his philosophy was on point – if they can hold a gun, they can fight.  He took total war tactics to the next level, and had every single person capable of holding a weapon fight.  The history of women in the Russian military is fascinating, believe it or not.  Given how many in the regressive left love themselves some Marx, I’m genuinely shocked that they aren’t more made about this too.  Oh, that’s right, so long as women do stuff in gaming, the SJW crowd is happy.  Even though, as we’ve SEEN, they don’t buy these games anyway.  Love it in principle?

Again, the Internet saw fit to destroy their historical ignorance, but it seems that EA just can’t stop this madness.  In a photo from a press event, they showed off the Battlefield V logo surrounded by gender comments that they drudged up, tripling-down that this is historical ignorance on the part of those who are against it.  The person in charge of development apparently was given the idea to go this female route by their little kid, who plays a girl in Fortnite, and wanted there to be one in Battlefield too.  Given how the left LOVES to make story about little “woke” children, all of which are complete bullshit, I’m reticent to believe this is true.  However, let’s take this at face value – it’s still stupid.

I know you all probably haven’t thought about this in forever, but anyone remember the marketing behind the TERRIBLE 2016 remake of Ghostbusters?  When people naturally reacted negatively to that cinematic abortion, more specifically the release trailer, Sony decided to make it all about the gender issue.  That was the cornerstone of the marketing.  Anyone remember how that all turned out?  The movie sucked and everyone hated it.  It was box office suicide.  Paul Feig, the director, harassed and ridiculed fans of the original to no end.  It was a PR disaster, to the point that no sequel has been green-lit.  I don’t feel bad about that.  That movie sucked and I’m glad it’s dead.

Making gender the center of the battleground in EA’s latest financial suicide note is strange, to me.  We can document that the social justice people that they are trying to appeal to don’t play these games.  They don’t.  So why try and make this market to them?  It won’t appeal to hardcore fans, when you spit the face of history and make that the cornerstone of your reveal.  It destroys suspension of disbelief.  Not to mention that stupid katana on a British soldier.  That doesn’t get enough coverage in the historical butt-fucking this game did to a real historical event.

I think I’ve figured out why EA and DICE did this.  See, games journalism is overrun with SJWs.  It’s just a fact.  The media is such a social justice blitzkrieg, outside of YouTube.  With all the endless coverage to one side of the fence that you see everywhere, it’s not hard to see why someone would think that these people have the pulse of the gaming crowd.  It doesn’t help that these people come after their own audience of gamers in defense of corporations now.  For the uninitiated gamer, these are their news outlets too.  So they see this kind of coverage and think they’re on to something.  Which means, after years of games media yelling about women and minorities and whatever in gaming, big companies have decided to shoe-horn in “woke” characters wherever.  EA is already hemorrhaging money after the Battlefront 2 debacle.  Their stock prices crashed.  They crashed after this too.  Investors are starting to see that the gaming crowd is not happy with EA.

Which brings us, finally, to the PR lesson.  It’s this – don’t fuck with your audience!  Learn from your mistakes and move on.  EA could easily have just let this go and taken the hit, maybe marketing the multiplayer aspect or something of Battlefield V and not bring this up.  But nope!  This is the hill they’re choosing to die on.  Just like Ghostbusters (2016) did.  And make no bones about it, they’re gonna die on this hill.  It’s only a matter of time.  The women and social justice types they’re trying to reach don’t play games like this, and the crowd who does is not impressed.  So why choose to take failure and turn it into more failure?  This is the most asinine thing I think I’ve ever seen a multi-billion dollar company do.  It literally makes no sense to me.

Don’t spit in your audience’s face and then yell at them for being mad at you.  Especially when you REALLY need to start building audience confidence, and you have another big title launching soon.  I’m talking about Anthem.  A game with a troubled story already and fears that this will be microtransaction, EA gambling nirvana.  This is a bad time for you to attack your audience.

Until next time, a quote,

“You might as well aim high.  Why shoot yourself in the foot when you can shoot yourself in the head?” – William Shatner

Peace out,

Maverick

Where’s the Appreciation for Narrative Growth? (a response to David Jaffe)

In a recent Twitch stream, the God of War developer David Jaffe had part of it where he went after modern AAA games, and how all of them play the same.  His example was the Uncharted franchise, and how the first game plays exactly the same as the last.  This was used as a launching point about how AAA gaming is dying, and they just don’t know it yet.  Gotta say, this was grinding my gears a little.  Why?  Because there is something that always gets lost in the ruckus of this – the story.  Why is there no appreciation for narrative growth in gaming?

Look, I will be the first to admit that he has a point about AAA gaming having a lot of sameness.  There are a lot of them that play just like the others, and if I had the money to play lots of different games a year, maybe this would bug me more.  But since I have been a very poor gamer for all my adult life, I only get games when I think I can afford them, and as such get the games I want as opposed to the games that are out.  However this is just to explain where I’m coming from, it’s not an argument.

Here’s why I game, David – the story.  It’s why I read books, watch movies, and to a much lesser extent TV shows.  I want a narrative that engages me.  Either it makes me think or feel or any combination of the two.  I want to get wrapped up in the world and the characters that I am with on this journey.  It’s why I am so in love with the story of Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us.  The gameplay in it isn’t especially complicated.  That’s one thing a lot of reviewers hammered it for.  Everyone loves the story, but says the gameplay is mediocre.  I disagree, but that’s not the point.  It’s all about the story I’m being told.

A YouTube personality I follow once said that the story in a video game is like the story in porn.  That sentiment REALLY bothered me.  Um, no!  Yeah, because the scene in The Last of Us where Joel is carrying Ellie out of the hospital and saying things that he said to his daughter to her was just like a porn I saw where Alex Chance was stuffing her pussy with a massive dildo, right?  Or in Journey, where our nameless character reaches the summit of the mountain and the swelling music helps this last bit of his journey that seems to be an analogue for reaching heaven.  That’s just like porn too, right?  Or when Luke makes the decision to give his life to save the world, and Tear telling him she loves him in Tales of the Abyss, pure pornography, right?!

I’ve been noticing over the last few years that there are more games being made where the narrative is the centerpiece and the rest is built around it.  The games where the gameplay elements are simplistic because it’s trying to keep you focused on the narrative, but still be engaging enough to let you feel like you’re doing something.  The Internet hates that.  I’m in a minority because I love some of them.  Not all, mind you.  Some are stupid, pretentious bullshit, but there are others that I can mesh with very well.

The point is this – let’s take a look at the Uncharted franchise.  In the first game, you see Nate as a younger, quippier, more modern Indiana Jones.  There is his mentor/father figure, Sully, who you see go from just being his pal to being the person he trusts more than anyone.  There is Elena, who goes from the reporter trying not to let her story get away, to his wife that he lied to and has to make amends.  The franchise tells a complete narrative of these characters and by the end there is a nice arc to wrap the whole thing up in a bow.  The last game even introduces a new character into the mix and he fits in nicely with them too.  The gameplay elements do remain similar, but is there nothing to at least respect about how the narrative grows?

Jaffe strikes me as someone who has the YouTuber’s perspective on this.  I have come to the realization that I am in an EXTREME minority with how I view things.  But part of me wonders how much of a minority I am in.

All that being said, I’d like to touch on what Jaffe said about AAA gaming dying.  Nah, dude.  It’s not.  The greed of some companies is definitely hurting it.  The microtransaction rage is bubbling to the surface and more and more gamers are giving companies the finger and looking elsewhere because they’re tired of being treated like they don’t exist.  There is going to come a day when the greed of some of the major companies is going to sink them, and they will only have themselves to blame.  But the industry is going to survive.  With so many companies rising with good content and the willingness to take chances, like CD Projekt Red, this industry is going to survive.  It will take a hit, and AAA gaming will be hurting for a while, but it will come back.  I’m glad of that.

So, what do you all think?  Am I the only pretentious faggot who likes a good narrative and seeing a narrative grow over a series?  Let me know in the Comments.

Until next time, a quote,

“Great stories happen to those who can tell them.” – Ira Glass

Peace out,

Maverick

Gaming News Panders to Big Business, Demonizes Gamers

A lot of things have been happening recently that have gotten the attention of gaming companies and because it damages their capacity to rake in a fuck-ton of money on the back of microtransactions.  Naturally, when big gaming is hurt, they have their bitch-boy media in quickly to defend them.  This should come as a surprise to nobody.  We’ve seen, time and time again, the gaming news publications are bought and paid for by gaming companies.  We saw it with review scores and how the utterly corrupt outlets like IGN, Gamespot, and Kotaku will give favorable reviews to almost any AAA game, regardless of quality.  How Fallout 76 wasn’t able to get this treatment boggles the mind.  Maybe some rational part of gaming news realized that if they gave that game a favorable review, their audience would laugh them off-stage.

Not that they should care.  Games media being corrupt is nothing new.  Despite what every mainstream outlet says, #GamerGate uncovered a TON of collusion and corruption in the industry.  The synchronized “Gamers are Dead” articles, the synchronized articles demonizing Christina Hoff Sommers for her take on the controversy, and the endless series of personal and unprofessional relationships between developers and games media, they are corrupt to the core and it’s known to everyone who isn’t a total sheep.

So it comes as no surprise to me that all the recent controversies of big gaming engaging is unpopular shit has mainstream games media jumping to their defense without a second thought.  Like when Activision/Blizzard announced Diablo Immortal at Blizzcon when people were expecting a real game, and then subsequently talked down to their fans.  What has followed since then has been a dumpster fire that makes them look worse and worse, with information coming out that they are going to sell ALL of their IPs up the river to mobile, and how the new Diablo game is just a reskin of another game the mobile developer has done.  The side-by-side comparisons are too obvious to ignore, despite Blizzard saying up and down that that isn’t true.

Naturally, the “journalists” in games media came rushing out to defend Blizzard, demonizing the fans and called them “entitled.”  Well, hot on the heels of that little bit of corrupt protection through “objective” journalism, we have Ubisoft getting some flak as well for their announcement of censoring Rainbow Six: Siege in order to meet the criteria for Chinese censorship.  A tactic that would set a dangerous precedent, if followed through – that video games will have their creativity crushed in order to appeal to a market in a country with strict laws about what is appropriate to show.  The fan backlash was immediate and heated, to the point that Ubisoft walked back that announcement.

As is to be expected, games media ran to the company’s defense, with one of the most baffling defenses I have ever seen.  The author of an article said that Ubisoft should be encouraged in this endeavor, in addition to their announcement of the inclusion of loot boxes, which happened this year as well.  Why?  Because they are a big company and should be able to make as much money as possible!  What a “pro-consumer” thing to say.  “Don’t yell at the corporations!  That hurts their feelings!  They need lots of money!

It’s so weird to me that games media has turned on their audience so hard.  Article after article after article for years following #GamerGate telling gamers that they should feel bad for having opinions.  Isn’t companies listening to the feedback of their customers a good thing?  In an age where gaming companies are continually ignoring backlash in order to sell out and make a shit-ton of money at the cost of their product, the fact that SOME companies are actually listening to feedback and taking it to heart should be a good thing.  Granted, Blizzard can’t seem to put out their dumpster fire and only make it worse, but they at least pitifully ATTEMPTED to address the controversy.

I’ve seen so many “pro-consumer” publications and even YouTube personalities just become corporate shills.  It’s why I don’t watch Angry Joe anymore, or Jim Sterling.  Well, in Jim’s case, it was when he supported Ben Kuchera when he said that doxxing is a good thing and he has every right to do it.  He sold out to the SJW community a LONG time ago.  You have Angry Joe yelling at consumers for being mad about the blatant historical inaccuracy of Battlefield V, though that game got much more substantive criticism later, like the fact that it was rushed out unfinished with the online component being a complete mess.  Still, seeing someone who I always thought was at least partially on the side of the consumer kissing EA’s ass all because of political ideological allegiance is frustrating.

These people should be championing consumers speaking out when something bothers them, and encouraging companies to at least listen to what they have to say.  They don’t have to agree or kowtow to us, but at least hear where people are coming from and take it into consideration.  What’s the problem with that?  Oh right, it hurts the feelings of multi-billion dollar companies and they might earn a few million dollars less than they otherwise would have.  Oh, and have to work a little harder into not making their mainline games worse and instead make a localized version for China.  Yeah, I feel so bad for them.  The poor babies.

Until next time, a quote,

“You know what this is?  It’s the world’s smallest violin playing just for the waitresses.” – Mr Pink, Reservoir Dogs

Peace out,

Maverick

Bad PR 119: Blizzard, Mobile Gaming, and Making Things Worse

You know what I love?  A good dumpster fire.  Not literally, of course.  Those smell bad and aren’t nice to look at, but just watching something beautiful burn in their own hubris is so fucking beautiful to watch.  We’ve seen it happen over and over.  There was the fire every step of the way during the development of Mighty No. 9.  There was the Yooka-Laylee voice acting fiasco.  Don’t even get me started on the beautiful destruction of games journalism during #GamerGate.  Now, we have the saga of Blizzard and their mobile gaming.

For those who didn’t know, all of this started a week or so ago at Blizzcon when they announced a new Diablo game.  Now, this is an event for PC gamers, because that is their core audience.  They hinted at a new Diablo game announcement before this event, but tried to walk that back because some part of them must have realized this could blow up in their face.  If only they had that foresight when they ended the big press conference event by showing off that the new Diablo game was for mobile platforms.  The way the room suddenly went silent was deafening.  Even the announcer could feel it, and you can tell that he was sweating pinballs.

Things got worse at a Q&A panel where one person asked if this whole thing was a “late April Fools Joke” and when asked if there was any way any of this was coming to PC, they got booed when they said no and then subsequently attacking their audience.  But it didn’t stop there!  The company who makes this has already made games that are basically Diablo knock-offs, and people were noticing how this new game looked like a reskin of the old one.  To which Blizzard doubled down on it not only being a good idea and the future of gaming, but not a reskin.

Following this, Activision’s stocks took a nose-dive.  They lost billions in stock value in a day.  Which leads me to today.  Seeming seeing the writing on the wall, and not wanting to lose more money, Blizzard decided to triple-down on mobile gaming being the future by saying that not only are they going mobile with Diablo, but they are going that way with ALL of their IPs.  Everything is gonna be mobile now.  They said that because of this, they have more projects going than ever before and they are going to make a huge profit.  This kind of speak sound kinda funny to you?  Like it isn’t gamers they are talking to?  Yeah, sounded that way for me too.

Because it isn’t gamers they are talking to.  It’s investors.  Activision Blizzard saw the massive decline in their stock and have run to assure investors that everything is great and that this backlash is nothing to be concerned about.  In doing this, they showed that not only are they focusing all their IPs on mobile titles, but they are putting their best talent to work doing this.  Needless to say, the backlash has been deafening.

How a company can be this out of touch with their audience just blows my fucking mind.  It really does.  Any corporate venture knows that investors are great, but if there is no demand for your product, their stocks are worth just as little.  But then, perhaps there is some logic to this.  After all, they are probably right that these products are going to make a shit-ton of money.  Mobile gaming is big, especially over in Asia.  China has become not only a mecca for Hollywood to make money, but also mobile gaming companies, as people will sink hundreds of millions into microtransactions.  This market has mass appeal in Asia.  Which makes the setting for this announcement for more fitting.

So perhaps Blizzard isn’t out of touch with their audience.  They have just written off that if they ignore western audience and focus on eastern, they lose nothing.  Perhaps there was financial calculus being done by the company at how much they could destroy with this dumpster fire and still coming out clean on the other side.  These games will make a fuck-ton of money.  They know that before they even do it.  It will be microtransaction heaven, which will make even more.  In these countries, people will pay.  So what does Blizzard stand to lose?

Still, it is nice to see Blizzard do more of a scorched-earth response to audience backlash than Konami.  I mean wow.  It’s more than a little impressive.  To give your PC audience the finger not once, not twice, but three times!  They could have come out and made a video to assuage their PC gaming community who was made them big.  At a time when they are making new characters for Overwatch while the game is filled with bugs that need fixing desperately, they continually show more and more tone-deafness to their core audience.  It blows my mind.

The PR lesson is this – if you are going to take this kind of tactic with your audience, the consumers who buy your products, you better know for certain that you are going to get a return for your investment in the long run, because not only is customer loyalty a huge part of corporate success, but so is brand recognition.  If people know your company as one thing, and you are selling that thing up the river to be a different thing to pander to a different community, you better know that this is going to work before you get started.  Otherwise, it will be event after event where games journalism (the bane of all gaming) will kiss your ass, while the audience dries up more and more.

Good luck, Blizzard,

Until next time, a quote,

“Forgive me, I don’t know the local custom, but where I come from, when you hear a prayer, you say ‘Amen.’  Because that’s what you just heard – a prayer.” – Lawrence Garfield, Other People’s Money

Peace out,

Maverick