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Eh? What?

Member Since 23 Jan 2004
Offline Last Active May 19 2019 10:12 PM
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#14151676 CAGcast #585: The GCU Cycle

Posted by player66 on 05 April 2019 - 05:23 PM

I was surprised to hear the cast's response to news of mental health breakdowns for a few staff members working at EA on Anthem. 

 

Back in 2004 I worked at Maxis post-EA acquisition, but pre-relocation to Redwood Shores (HQ) as part of a 40+ person QA staff. During our crunch on a console Sims title we worked 14 hour days on average, 7 days a week for over six weeks straight.  In the final days of certification testing pre-gold master we didn't leave the office except maybe for a pair of 30-60 minute lunch breaks over the course of 48 hours.  Dinners were provided, as were snacks, but the combined pressure of the hours and the repetition of our work tasks was very stressful for a few members of our team, two of whom had major breakdowns.

 

One of our team members was picked up by BART police (light train public transit) 35 miles away in San Francisco during a work day. He was incoherent and unable to communicate with them and they found the QA Manager's business card in his wallet. His family had to pick him up and get him help. Another team member also had to seek professional care during this "crunch" and was fired for taking time off of his job. When these two appalling incidents were reported to the QA director at the studio she told the staff that she wasn't willing to change our schedules and if any of us had a problem with it we would be quickly replaced as "testers are a dime a dozen."

 

I think I would have been skeptical about extreme workplace stress in the video game industry until I had experienced a small sample of it first hand. Some of the people I worked with back then never left their jobs at EA and while they've worked up to more senior positions inside of the company, this kind of atmosphere didn't deter them from the company or the industry as a whole.

 

EA Spouse was published right around the time we were going through the worst of our crunch days and reading the post a few of us had hopes that there would be major institutional changes made as a result. I stayed there for two more title releases, both of which were post-relocation and while the hours were somewhat more reasonable 12 hour days and adjusted schedules so no one had to work a 7 day week, there were still 48-72 hour workdays during cert. I left the video game industry and never looked back. No other job I've had since has been so dismissive of mental health or workplace safety as it relates to reasonable work hours, time off and reasonable and clearly communicated team goals.

 

I was glad to hear you guys turn the corner a bit and try to empathise for the team members who experienced the breakdowns on Anthem as the conversation continued. Thanks for the entertainment and the laughs on a weekly basis. Love the show.




#14074926 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Josef on 03 November 2018 - 05:08 AM

Just wanted to give everyone a heads up that starting with this order I was charged an incorrect tax amount on my order.  I live in PA and would normally be charged a 6% sales tax, which is what my prior few orders have been charged.  But starting with this order I was also charged an Allegheny County sales tax of an additional 1%.  The thing is I don't even live near 100 miles of Allegheny County.  Reading the LRG forums it appears that other PA residents have been incorrectly charged this tax and even someone from Illinois said they were charged Cook County and Chicago Municipal tax despite not living in those tax jurisdictions.

 

If you are getting charged sales tax on your orders I would suggest reviewing your order summary to make sure you are being charged the correct amount (should be located under the shipping charge).

 

I opened a help desk ticket where they should be able to rectify this overcharge.




#14052772 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Madzane on 14 September 2018 - 05:08 PM

Annnnnnnd Salt is booted down to a limit of 1 for the next wave.


#14041290 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Richard Kain on 20 August 2018 - 07:45 PM

Yeah, an 90% of use "retro" graphics. Part of me thinks there are more "retro"-styled indie games than there are actual retro games. 

 

I'd just like to address this one here.

 

I often hear complaints regarding "retro" graphics. (that is to say, simple art or pixel-based art) I realize the poster, Vinny, is not necessarily complaining, but simply commenting on the seeming proliferation of these graphical styles.

 

Obviously, there are far more actual retro games than there are retro-styled modern games. We have some twenty years of gaming history to draw on for examples, and that adds up to a sizable number of releases. It may sometimes seem like there is less of a disparity, but this is usually due to a lack of exposure and knowledge of older titles, as opposed to an over-abundance of modern retro graphic titles. The internet has plenty of tools for record keeping, but the on-line community has a surprisingly short memory. And video games are a notorious medium for having troubles with historical record-keeping, and preserving older works. A lot of the past gets forgotten, and even less seems to stick in the public consciousness as represented by on-line communities.

 

And at the same time, it is true that there are plenty of modern retro-themed titles. I'm not going to deny that. But I also don't have a problem with this. I have a bit of experience working on graphics, and even some experience dappling in in-game graphics. And one thing I can say for certain is that producing those graphics takes a lot of freaking time. Like, A LOT of time. In terms of man-hours, it is incredibly costly. And this is just a base-line. It isn't even taking the quality of the art or the natural talents of the artist into consideration. Even a highly talented and naturally efficient artist would still be putting a lot of time and effort into creating game graphics. And the more sophisticated and detailed the art assets are, the more time they take to produce. Modern high-quality, normal-mapped, high-fidelity art assets are insanely expensive to produce.

 

Most indie developers use retro-themed art as a necessity, not as an aesthetic choice. Simpler art is less costly to produce, and less costly to animate. (animation is a HUGE time-sink) Small teams or individuals simply don't have the budget to produce Call-of-Duty levels of detailed graphics. Many of them are driven to such art styles out of desperation, as opposed to active choice.




#14040452 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Darshminder on 17 August 2018 - 10:21 PM

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#14019359 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Olengie on 01 July 2018 - 05:30 PM

 

Turns out LRG was short on Metronomicon for their hold orders and had to buy them on Ebay. 




#14018911 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Olengie on 30 June 2018 - 03:56 AM

07/06: "Night Trap" (Switch), "Observer" (PS4), "Magicka 2" (PS4) & "Everspace" (PS4)
07/13: "Exile's End" (PS4/Vita)
07/20: "Thumper" (PS4/Switch) & "Hue" (PS4/Vita)
 
This is the rest of the Summer titles. Which will presumably come in August.
 
PS4/Vita:
Iconoclasts
Phantom Breaker Battlegrounds Overdrive (w/DLC for PS4 and expected to cost 5 dollars more than DLC-less Vita version)
Salt and Sanctuary (Aug 24)
Senran Kagura Bon Appetit
Rabi-Ribi (“aiming for August” as of last account by LRG)

 

Switch:
West of Loathing (Aug 3)
Yooka-Laylee (Aug 17, this date not confirmed, just my assumption based on pattern of Switch releases and it is confirmed for August)
Golf Story (September)
 
From their discord.



#14017025 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by nitrosmob on 26 June 2018 - 12:16 PM

I know I wont convince anyone, but I honestly didn't like Xenon Valkyrie too much. The graphics are to the extreme of pixelly, and honestly it's just not super fun compared to other rogue like/metroid-vania type games. It's extremely repetitive too, and honestly the better game similar to it is Risk of Rain. Just my 2 cents, but I know I wont be buying it.




#14011408 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Olengie on 14 June 2018 - 08:22 AM

We need Sewer Shark

How about Street Sharks instead. Much more jawesome.




#14007176 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by ihadmail on 08 June 2018 - 02:46 PM

I missed Super Hydorah standard edition.  I simply forgot about it until about 10:10, and when I checked it was gone.  How quickly did it sell out?

I think right around 2 minutes. It was the first to go.




#13976991 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by chrislaustin on 06 April 2018 - 12:04 PM

I know many here have been waiting on Rabi-Ribi, so it's looks like it's getting close.........

 




#13974304 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by chrislaustin on 31 March 2018 - 07:08 PM

I just checked, and the Momodora soundtrack bundle was available again, but the Add to Cart button was replaced by a red Pre-Order button.  I tried to order a copy, and I was able to go through the check-out process fine, and I got a confirmation e-mail, too.

 

And now I went back on the site and it says the bundle is sold out again.  I guess there was a cancelled order that freed up at least one copy?

Yeah, that happens from time to time, so long as the order went thru, you should be OK.




#13927815 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by Olengie on 16 January 2018 - 09:10 PM

I can understand not taking on too much and needing to thin the herd a bit, but I hope they are still going to put out Cosmic Star Heroine and Rabi Ribi.

Of course. They're just not going to cancel games from the Sekai Project x Limited Run Games partnership. Only way for that to happen is Sekai Project cancelling it themselves for not getting any shit done

 

They're still working on the Vita ver. of CSH. Once that is done, the PS4/Vita release will soon come after, whenever that is.




#13927768 Limited Run Games Thread - The Switch is on!

Posted by spoderman on 16 January 2018 - 07:20 PM

I can understand not taking on too much and needing to thin the herd a bit, but I hope they are still going to put out Cosmic Star Heroine and Rabi Ribi.

I'm sure they will, those two are very popular. At the rate they're releasing Rabi Ribi at I might just wait for a physical Switch release though.


#13927781 PSN Weekly Deals - 4/10: Rockstar Sale! $20 Owlboy, $14 Aegis D...

Posted by chriscolbert on 16 January 2018 - 07:52 PM

My stats page says I only saved $10.70, which I'm not sure is right. I'm pretty sure I jumped on more sales than that. It also said I played 51 different games - I'd love to see a list of what they thought I played, because that doesn't sound right either. My most played game according to them was Danganronpa Trigger Happy Havoc at 49 hours. :shock:

In reading the small print, it does say they are only factoring in the difference between PS+ and non-PS+ prices when giving the total, because mine said $62.30 and it also seemed small. But then I realized the bulk of the savings aren't through PS+ and it made more sense.

You might have already known that but I figured I'd mention it just in case lol