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STEAM | December II 2014 - A thread for people who don't like sale side posters.

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Lomax

Member
Companies doing the first sale after the winter sale have three choices:

1) Do the same discount as the winter sale, which seems pointless.
2) Do a larger discount than the winter sale, which pisses off winter purchasers.
3) Do a smaller discount than the winter sale, which makes the new deal seem silly and frustrates people who missed the previous deal.

Having no discount during the sale and then a special afterwards is probably the best for the consumer, except for the people that spent their full budget. But obviously the best for the company is to have a larger discount afterwards, as the previous purchases were already made and it might motivate new ones. But basically, no matter what, it's a lose/lose proposition.

We can surmise that there is an NDA for publishers about upcoming Steam sales (though plenty have hinted about upcoming deals a day or two before, we don't see announcements weeks in advance). We can also assume this weekend deal was in place well before the Winter sale started. Perhaps the best response for Carpe Fulger when people asked for a winter deal would have been to say "just wait until after the sale, we have something planned." But they put the games on sale due to demand and nothing more. And anyone who bought at the slightly higher price can feel good about themselves for supporting good games and the further translation of Japanese PC games.

Edit: We know there's a Humble Bundle coming on Sunday, which means there's 5-8 games that no doubt lots of people bought over the sale that will be available for next to nothing. We all know that's the truth of PC gaming now. Which is why the rule is always to pay what you are comfortable with paying when you are comfortable with it, because it will always be cheaper later, and often very soon.
 
oh shit! just realized the "new" guy posting is frost :O

is that the real heartless you? :p
 

BinaryPork2737

Unconfirmed Member
I'm just going to guess that most people don't want these anyway, so go nuts.

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alstein

Member
If anyone is interested in Elemental: Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes, keep in mind that both Endless Legend and Age of Wonders 3 are far less clunky and better designed that LH, and would be better purchases when they're inevitably on sale (again) in the future.

IIRC there's also another Elemental game in development by Stardock, which will probably wholly replace LH in the way it replaced Fallen Enchantress (which, in turn, replaced the original, Elemental: War of Magic.)


Who?
;) because sometimes a normal winky face isn't enough.

LH is worth it at $10 easily. It's a little clunky, but the AI isn't useless like it is in Endless Legend.

The LH DLC, the first two are worth it (Loot and Quest), the rest aren't.

As for the next Elemental game (Sorcerer King) , I've been playing that for a while- it's really a different experience- it's quite good. It's little like LH though, it's more like what you get when you cross a 4X with a roguelike or FTL.
 

jshackles

Gentlemen, we can rebuild it. We have the capability to make the world's first enhanced store. Steam will be that store. Better than it was before.
So in other words, if you buy a game and realize you're never going to install it, then you can get the refund within a couple of weeks, but if you start installing it you're SOL.

That's the best case scenario for consumers, but I still doubt even that will happen any time soon. I imagine that nothing here will change and it will be up to EU consumers to push their rights in a legal sense. Even then, I think Valve could argue that "adding the game to your digital library" is the same as "using" it, and you are thus not eligible for a refund. All they need to do is update their Steam Subscriber Agreement as such (that you agree that by adding the game to your library that you are consuming it digitally and that you waive your rights to legally be afforded a refund of this purchase) and we're right back where we are today.
 

Sendou

Member
AFAIK the new EU regulation is about digital purchases you didn't start downloading yet.

All they need to do is update their Steam Subscriber Agreement as such (that you agree that by adding the game to your library that you are consuming it digitally and that you waive your rights to legally be afforded a refund of this purchase) and we're right back where we are today.

That's not quite correct. You can't give away your rights like that.
 

Lomax

Member
Honestly the biggest "consumer protection" we need is the declaration that digital accounts are property and thus transferable. This would apply to everything from your iTunes music collection to your WoW account. Individual items in those accounts don't need to be transferable, but the idea that I can't legally give my accounts away, bequeath them, or otherwise transfer them is ridiculous in this day and age.

Also, Hexcells is just as brilliant as everyone said.

Are any of the other games in the Carpe Fulgur Collection any good? I've only heard good things about Recettear.

Try the demos. Each one is quite different. Neither is nearly as universally appealing as Recettear, but a lot of people like each of them on their own merits. Neither really grabbed me though.
 

Stumpokapow

listen to the mad man
Honestly people complaining about sales get to have that complaint exactly once. After that it's time to realize that ANYTHING can be cheaper at any point and if that's going to be a significant life stressor then stop buying things. Games are sold on a business model of aggressive price stratification--if you're willing to pay more, you will pay more. If you're not, you won't.
 

alr1ght

bish gets all the credit :)

Last AGDQ bundles was ($25 minimum), so don't get too excited.
Gunpoint
Noitu Love 2 Devolution
Bleed
Electronic Super Joy
Guacamelee! Gold Edition
Psychonauts
Dustforce
The Basement Collection
Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams - Rise of the Owlverlord
 

jshackles

Gentlemen, we can rebuild it. We have the capability to make the world's first enhanced store. Steam will be that store. Better than it was before.
That's not quite correct. You can't give away your rights like that.

It depends on your jurisdiction I guess whether things like this would hold up legally, but big companies (especially big gaming companies) do this sort of thing all the time. For example, when Ubisoft offered a free game for Assassin's Creed Unity season pass purchasers it came with a legal clause stating that you couldn't sue Ubisoft on accounts of non-merchantability and such. If you want the free game, you agree to the legal terms. Signing up for PSN, you waive your rights to sue Sony in a class-action suit.

The same is true with Valve. Each time you make a purchase on Steam, you tick a box stating that you agree to the Steam Subscriber Agreement - they even tell you the last time it was updated so you know if it's been changed. They could very easily place a clause such as this in that agreement and (in the United States at least) it would be legal for them to do so. Whether that legalese holds up in an EU court is up to them to decide. Most purchases being less than $100 USD means this would likely have to be a class-action suit.

If Valve were to allow refunds for games as long as they hadn't been downloaded, they would need to place A LOT more protection in on their side. For example, what if you use Account 1 to make a purchase, and Account 1 has Steam Family Sharing with Account 2. Account 2 downloads the game and plays it. Then Account 1 files a refund claim as they "haven't ever downloaded it". Is Steam legally obligated to issue the refund? It's a slippery slope, because if the issue really gets pressed in the EU courts you guys could see things like Steam Family Sharing (or even Steam in general if it becomes unprofitable for them) go away as a result.
 
Made some Lords of the Fallen webms... they're processing and I'll post them in a bit... but I'm wondering what the hell is up with the fuchsia type color patterning on the lower edge... so strange.
Here's the short one where I was amused by the sort of required backstab when I met this enemy type:
http://robotbrush.com/corrosivefros....01.2015 - 23.59.20.51.DVR.mp4.converted.webm
Hrrrm... the fuchsia artifacting didn't transfer to that webm... strange.
hah, you tried casually to get behind him but it ain't easy like most mobs in dark souls.
Here's the back half of my run in with the "Commander" boss of Lords of the Fallen:
http://robotbrush.com/corrosivefros....01.2015 - 23.55.10.48.DVR.mp4.converted.webm
ok. here i can clearly see compared to DS LOF is way slower. from the dodges to even the time attack animations last. and as before, quickly rolling to get behind the back looks much harder than in DS.
also the boss is kinda tame in design compared to DS' ones.
visually it looks pretty good.
The guy who makes the Pixelvision skin just announced that he's stopping development permanently. Sucks because it's my favorite skin.
thanks for posting. was going vanilla for some time now but this really looks nice.
 

autoduelist

Member
I'd love to hear some tips, especially on what is worth it in the early levels. Am I better off going for upgrades and minimal turrets or building food machines to level up the team?

Dungeon of the Endless tips, spoiler tagged so as not to burden the thread EDIT - crap, I forgot this site doesn't roll up spoilers into one line unclicked, oh well:

To just answer your question, focus on resources. Only build turrets if absolutely essential. Leveling up characters is the 'third' thing I worry about -- 1) surviving/establishing/industry focus, 2) science focus, then 3) food focus. More on this below.

1. Focus on upping resource production early on. In my opinion, if the first level crystal does not allow you to upgrade science, food, or industry (in order of my preference) just restart. Sometimes you'll get the opportunity to skip from lvl 1 to 3 for something like 65 crystals -- do it at all costs if you can - it saves you the cost of the level 2 machine, which is huge early on.

2. On level 1, first build a industry generator. Then science. Then food. You'll need the industry to build other generators. You'll need the science to buy upgrades and ensure you get enough for the artifact upgrade (46 or 65 science, depending). Food is for leveling up, but I don't worry about too much - though if you have a character with the 'Operator' skill at level 3, I level him up to 3 asap (usually at the end of level 1) before worrying about my door opener/combat unit. I generally keep this the order until I feel safe enough to focus production (discussed later).

3. Operators take 1 turn to get ready, then up production. So... put them in a choke point and never move them, preferably after you open your first door in a given level.

4. Later on, floors get huge. In my opinion, you should open in one direction only from your starting block, until you have both: 1) a defensible position, and 2) enough dust to power a room. Now, you can open another direction from your starting point with your warrior, and power the room so you don't get attacked from behind your front line. Now go back and open more doors on the 'defended' corridor, until you earn enough dust to power a room -- go back to the other non-defended corridor (or another door connected to base), open and power. This way you can keep pushing forward - you never want to open a door next to your crystal without power to light the room. Once you exhaust rooms in your defended corridor, you have also lit up some rooms in other directions that you can now add defenses to, and all giant 'mobs' from unlit rooms will spawn into the first killzone and be torn apart w/o much supervision.

5. By killzone, I mean unmanned rooms... preferably long ones with 4 or so minor modules. For levels under 8 or 9, one or two rooms with 2 Neurostuns (slow enemies) and two Tear Gas should rip apart almost anything. In my opinion, beyond resource production Neurostuns are the most important -- they bring enemies to a crawl, giving both time to react to other situations as well as damaging them tons with minors in the same room.

6. Eventually you'll find you need to also defend rooms. Dust Field Gens (2 stacked) give a huge boost to your defense (and thus life). Tear Gas does over time damage, but more importantly lowers enemy defense. So two of them would be nice -- later on replace one with a KIP maybe, if you have the science to max it out.

7. No matter how well prepared you are, later levels are HARD. Even outlets for major modules are rare, meaning it's hard to produce anything even with your crazy level 4 science thing since you have nowhere to put it. Dust is also rare, meaning it's hard to set up defenses.

8. Keep in mind pricing. If you're going to level up your science generator for 100 science, be sure you think you'll actually earn more than 100 in the long run. Looking back, I'm not sure if the ones that cost 100 are ever worth it unless you luck into a huge level that is set up really nice for massive production.

9. Minors I love: Neurostun (essential), Dust Field Gens, Tear gas, Kip. You may find success with others, but that is a focused set that buffs your defense, debuffs theirs, and does serious damage in both manned and unmanned rooms. (obviously no need for DFGs in unmanned killzone rooms.

10. Early on, try to leave a level with at least 20-50 industry so you can start building right away. On level 1, I only build prisoner prods if I absolutely have to. On level 2, you'll probably have to, but still try to save as much as you can. Later you'll want at least 100 so you can also build minors right away.

11. Starting level 2, I really try to focus on science. You can often find 1-3 artifacts on any given floor, so with tons of science and a bit of luck finding them early, you can build a pile of upgrades on a single level by having all 3 producing at the same time -- and remember, opening the last door will finish all currently making something. Excess science will fuel your KIP one you research that (it doesn't use it up, just powers it) so it's never a bad thing.

12. Once I have a nice swell of science, on a later level I switch over to heavy food production. We're talking it's the absolute main focus -- (once you're in late levels it's hard to produce anything). Once I have everyone to level 7 or 8, I focused on getting my door opener to level 15. Scamper is an awesome door opener skill for getting through 5 unlit rooms back to your defenses, though I beat the game without it.

13. At some point, it's in your best interest to stop looking at the combat on screen, and instead look at your 4 character panel up in the top right. This way you'll see everyone taking damage at the same time, and won't miss some mob spawn killing some character you weren't focusing on.

14. On later levels (9-12) you may find yourself unable to light rooms or build production. Find the exit, cross your fingers, and run. I had to do this twice to win. I'm sure with luckier runs I'd have been able to get more out of those levels, but you need to know when to cut and run.

15. Shops are expensive. Only buy the best stuff if you really need it and the cost doesn't wreck your build plans.

16. Character death isn't the end. I lost 2 on my winning run, including one I'd invested a lot into (stupid death too, he earned stuff for enemy kills so I moved him into a killzone room with lots of almost dead enemies and they tore him to pieces before I could evac or heal him.. insta death).

17. I won with one door opener, and 3 operators. The operators just needed to operate and survive, so I amped their defense with minors where necessary, and used my door opener and killzone rooms to survive. My door opener would often have to run from combat zone to combat zone, saving the day, while my ops all stayed still. A good operator also has buff skills - armchair general or paramedic are nice. The chef has an amazing Damage over Time for all enemies on floor too.

18. There are very, very, very mean monsters later on. I'll leave you to discover them.

19. You'll want around 30 food in reserve on level 2+ to recruit. I spend my first food on leveling up an operator, then save food till I can hire. I'm not usually focusing on food production at this point, just ensuring I can make an operator and hire.

That was way longer than I meant it to be, but I got into it. If I skipped something obvious and you have a question, feel free to PM me.
 

Lomax

Member
but it's not like a lot of devs have been emulating Valve all these years, right?

No, probably not. But think about the position all the ex-devs are in. If Valve is the "perfect place to work" and you didn't make it there, it implies there's something wrong with you. Thus being a former Valve employee in a way carries a certain amount of taint to it. I think us here in this thread have a unique perspective on all this because we've heard jshackles tales of Valve and how we all think they should hire him, but I'd imagine to most of the pc gaming community not in this thread, a lot of this stuff about Valve is news to them.

Everyone and their dog wants to work for Valve because of the Handbook, tho.

Yep, and the handbook and methodology is so venerated that Valve won't even make minor concessions, and we all see how much Steam suffers as a result. And it's easy to imagine much of their other development is suffering as well. Objectively, the fact that Half Life 3 hasn't been released or even properly discussed means something is amiss internally.
 
LH is worth it at $10 easily. It's a little clunky, but the AI isn't useless like it is in Endless Legend.

The LH DLC, the first two are worth it (Loot and Quest), the rest aren't.

As for the next Elemental game (Sorcerer King) , I've been playing that for a while- it's really a different experience- it's quite good. It's little like LH though, it's more like what you get when you cross a 4X with a roguelike or FTL.

Skeleton race DLC isn't worth it? Madness.


Is Sorcerer King the next Elemental game? I was under impression it was a side project or something, with a proper LH sequel/expandalone coming down the road.

I suppose I should stop guessing and just try to look it up or something.
 
It's harmful in the respect that if Valve is held up as the "ideal" for a game developer, and no one is questioning it, other companies will emulate their setup. And what these guys are saying is that not only is the Valve setup not ideal, it's actually harmful to good development.

Everyone and their dog wants to work for Valve because of the Handbook, tho.

No, probably not. But think about the position all the ex-devs are in. If Valve is the "perfect place to work" and you didn't make it there, it implies there's something wrong with you. Thus being a former Valve employee in a way carries a certain amount of taint to it. I think us here in this thread have a unique perspective on all this because we've heard jshackles tales of Valve and how we all think they should hire him, but I'd imagine to most of the pc gaming community not in this thread, a lot of this stuff about Valve is news to them.


Yep, and the handbook and methodology is so venerated that Valve won't even make minor concessions, and we all see how much Steam suffers as a result. And it's easy to imagine much of their other development is suffering as well. Objectively, the fact that Half Life 3 hasn't been released or even properly discussed means something is amiss internally.

I see. Valid points.

Yeah, Steam has been suffering because of this shit. Honestly, if doing away completely with this structure would give me better service....then so be it!
 

fallout

Member
Yep, and the handbook and methodology is so venerated that Valve won't even make minor concessions, and we all see how much Steam suffers as a result. And it's easy to imagine much of their other development is suffering as well. Objectively, the fact that Half Life 3 hasn't been released or even properly discussed means something is amiss internally.
That's not objective at all. I want Half Life 3, but it ultimately really depends on how much Valve as a whole values Half Life 3.
 
welp


i never thought i'd be playing games like Shadowrun Returns......i heard the Expansion is even better so thank god i bought that too

mannnn i'm hooked

could've bought XCOM: Enemy Within or Unknown then ;_;

brings me back to the days of me playing a certain mech game back in ps1 with the same type of gameplay
 
What even are the sales data of half life franchise over left 4 dead?

Both main HL games sold over 10m (not sure if this is only PC though), L4D franchise sold over 12m?

But for Valve it's not the sold copies that count, but the potential staying power and player commitment. Concurrent player numbers. Continuous revenue stream. HL3 will never reach numbers like even TF2.
 

Volotaire

Member
The fact that we're getting L4D3 first speaks volumes how much they value it.

Left 4 Dead has much more potential for competitive gameplay elements (Versus which is the main game for a lot of veteran L4D players) and cosmetic microtransactions and new virtual monetary markets.
 
Persistent social multiplayer community monetization efforts are not viable in the Half-Life universe, so we'll never see another until it fits that formula exactly.
 
I really hope and want to believe Valve aren't having trouble transmuting it to fit their current model and that's why the silence and long dev tine. They just don't feel like working on it, but when they do, it will be proper HL and not some online shit. It's not like this is reassuring, but it's a much better scenario than the other. lol :(
 

fallout

Member
Persistent social multiplayer community monetization efforts are not viable in the Half-Life universe, so we'll never see another until it fits that formula exactly.
It'd be interesting to see if they could pull off a Half Life that focused on community generated single player narrative content. It would have to be limited in such a way that it didn't break the overall story and there are ton of other challenges with it, but it could result in some really amazing stuff.
 

Lomax

Member
That's not objective at all. I want Half Life 3, but it ultimately really depends on how much Valve as a whole values Half Life 3.

It is objective. To ignore their biggest property reeks of mismanagement. Are we to believe that no one working for Valve now wants to make Half Life 3? If that's true, hire people that do. You could have a dream team working on HL3 in a heartbeat.

Persistent social multiplayer community monetization efforts are not viable in the Half-Life universe, so we'll never see another until it fits that formula exactly.

To assume this is to assume that either the handbook is a lie, or that they have managed to drive off all employees who still want to do traditional development. Neither is a particularly reassuring thought.
 

Saty

Member
I really hope and want to believe Valve aren't having trouble transmuting it to fit their current model and that's why the silence and long dev tine. They just don't feel like working on it, but when they do, it will be proper HL and not some online shit. It's not like this is reassuring, but it's a much better scenario than the other. lol :(

Yes, but giving out a clear status report on where the next HL game stands at the moment has nothing to do with whatever company culture they have. I can't call it anything other than stupidity.
 
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