In: Uncategorized by David LaMont30 Oct 2008
It’s a shame, in light of these impressive design elements, that the PlayStation 3 version is shockingly inferior to the others from a technical perspective. Although the Xbox 360 and PC versions display the occasional visual oddity and bland texture, these nitpicks are easy to overlook. Sadly, the jagged edges, washed-out lighting, and slightly diminished draw distance of the PS3 release aren’t so easy to dismiss. We also experienced a number of visual bugs on the PS3. Character faces disappeared several times, leaving only eyeballs and hair; limbs on robots went missing; some character models had an odd outline around them as if they were cel-shaded; and the day-to-night transition may cause odd streaks on the screen as you move the camera around. This version doesn’t even offer trophies, whereas the Xbox 360 and PC versions offer Xbox Live/Windows Live achievements.
For irony purposes, Giant Bomb offers
The 360 version is no slouch, though. It might not be quite as pretty as the PC version, but it still looks fine. The load times remain pretty reasonable. The PlayStation 3 version is below the 360 version, by comparison. The level of detail when you’re in the wasteland or other areas where you can see for great distances isn’t quite as good, the game seems to be a bit more aliased, and the frame rate isn’t as smooth. Plus, the PS3 version of the game doesn’t have any trophy support (yet), and the game actually freezes every time a status message, such as “so and so is online” or “DUDE HOW DID U GET FALLOUT 3 EARLY!!!!???” is on-screen. That’s bad enough to make you want to log out of the PlayStation Network before booting up the PS3 version of the game.
The versions are practically the same. I don’t know what merits vast inferiority, aside from Microsoft payoff money.
From Cooper Hawkes:
(Link not available)
There are a lot of villains in this one. First you have Bethesda, who in an effort to get the game out day and date cross-platform perhaps didn’t spend enough time to truly polish the PS3 version to shiny. Then you have the game review sites that, in an effort to drive traffic, throw out an obvious piece of flame bait so meaty that I’m shocked there’s any blood left on the floor. Finally you have the fanboys, who can never ever possibly conceive that there may actually be issues with a game on their “console of choice.”
The sad part is, this is nothing new or unique. This has been happening since the Atari versus Intellivision days, and I can’t help but wonder what the Risk versus Monopoly fights must have been like ten years prior.
Heck, the fact I’m commenting on it is basically fueling it, but it’s gone from “Isn’t that amusing?” to “Oh Christ, will you please get a fracking life!,” and I only have so much patience folks.
Since we have three villains I’ll break them down devil by devil, and I’ll start first with my favorite group:
I’ve got a secret to tell you, Microsoft isn’t paying Gamespot to give favorable reviews. There is no vast conspiracy on the part of Sony to gobble up companies and force them to do first-party for the PS3, and Reggie does not sacrifice goats to the pagan gods to make Microsoft and Sony lose. This is the biggest load of crap ever shoveled by someone who has the nerve to call themselves a fan of anything. It is nothing more than attempt to try and massage your own ego, to convince everyone that your decision to buy the console was a good one, and that obviously something’s wrong with everyone else for not seeing it your way.
It makes you look petty, and it certainly diminishes how people view your opinions. Throwing out some wacky conspiracy theory as to why two separate sites cite the same issues is shallow and easily spotted. The only person who feels better when they read it is you, and perhaps a small handful of others with like sensibilities.
I’ve another secret to tell you: Microsoft? Sony? Nintendo? Every single game publisher on the planet? They see you as dollar signs, nothing more. I have no doubt that a good majority of the men and women who bleed for years creating an amazing game really do it for the love, but whoever gave the project the thumbs up is in it for the money. So your little puppy-dog antics are quite amusing to them, but trust me when I tell you that they would sell you to the medical-testing lab if they thought they could squeeze 20 more bucks out of the deal.
I don’t think of fanboys as gamers, I think of them as wannabes. They wannabe cool kids, but they don’t realize that to be “cool” in gaming you have to be open to all forms of gaming from all sides. A true gamer is not niche-based, they are game-based. They are looking for the challenge, for something fresh and fun and innovative, and it doesn’t matter who “brings” it as long as it is “brung.”
Ignoring a game like Gears of War 2, Resistance 2 or Super Mario Galaxy because they’re not on your console is an outrage to me. I completely understand that, with the cost of software and accessories, owning a single console is the only economically viable way of going, but don’t belittle your own decision or show your insecurities by both needlessly and foolishly defending the console and, by proxy, your decision.
Criticism is the nature of all media, and it is obvious to me that fanboys are not equipped to handle it. If the above mentioned person had brought up ideas from his/her own observation of both versions of the games and declared the differences “inconsequential,” I would find that fair.
In short, keep the discussion grounded in reality, not in some delusional world where everyone is out to get your precious console using dirty tricks and back-end money.
It makes all gamers look like sniveling idiots.
I have nothing but the utmost respect for Jeff Gerstmann, so normally I’d be willing to give him the benefit of the doubt that he wasn’t consciously going for flame bait, but frankly, it’s hard to defend that benefit.
The problem is that anytime you run a comparison video or story, it tends to generate a ton of comments from the fanboys. Comments equal traffic, and traffic equals money. You can see the obvious attraction to add something like that.
There is something to be said about a valid compare and contrast between the two versions since there are a (limited) number of people with both consoles who want to know which one is better.
Well, I guess that would depend on your definition of “better,” wouldn’t it?
See if there were a bunch of obvious and game-crippling bugs in one version over another, that would be a legitimate point to bring up. If there were massive differences in game play elements between one and the other, that also would be a legitimate point to bring up. To talk about slight graphic differences or message interruptions that do not break the game itself is petty and does nothing more than just fan the flames you’re hoping for.
Yes, a message popping up and freezing the game is bad and does warrant mention, but do not contrast it with the other console as a means to generate controversy. A review should be based on your personal perception of the game, the game play mechanics, and the feel of it. That’s it — not graphics, not which is better on which system. It’s the game that matters.
Time to stop giving fuel to the crazed for financial benefit and to go back to what you guys do best, which is review games as honestly as possible.
The hits will come, trust me.
Bethesda, I also love you guys. Oblivion is such an amazingly huge game that you have scared me from playing it. That may not be the type of praise you’re looking for, but trust me, it’s meant well. A majority of gamers know and revere you as a developer and think of you not as console specific but as genuinely interested in pushing the RPG boundaries.
PS3 fans were overjoyed when Oblivion came to their console, more so when Fallout 3 was announced as day and date with the Xbox 360 version. I have no doubt that you all worked and toiled very hard on this game, and I hope your upcoming vacations are restful ones.
That being said, why the hell didn’t you iron this shit out before you released the game?
I understand that you had a schedule to keep, that there are myriad factors that some gamers cannot even comprehend to get a title out the door, but if your goal is to have a quality cross-platform title out the door day and date, then you need to make sure that all versions share the same quality.
It has been three years since the debut of the Xbox 360, two years since the PS3 — that’s more than enough time to get an understanding of the inner complexities of both systems and figure out your best method of tackling such an endeavor. Had you mirrored development from day one to the point of near redundancy, there wouldn’t be this issue at all.
If you are going to go cross-platform, then both versions need to be exactly the same in every way. If you want to make side deals for DLC, that’s your prerogative, but the initial game must be solid across both platforms with no discernable differences apparent. Couple these reviews with your intent to publish exclusive DLC to Xbox 360 and you give off the perception that the Xbox 360 is your console of choice. I know that’s not the message you want to give out, but that’s how it will appear to the reviews and the fanboys.
Please take better strides to ensure that there are no differences in console version, it will prevent the reviewers from putting up flame bait, and the fanboys from taking it.
In the end, does this damage the game? Not at all. The game is still being universally praised and is easily a top three for game of the year. Only those with the keenest of eyes will see the differences, but not me. I’ll be too busy playing the game to actually notice.
UPDATE 10/31/2008: For Murphys Law:
Actually Atari and Intellivision were nipping at each other during the early 80′s, this spilled over onto my school playground with people comparing Atari with Intellivision.First there was this commercial:
Atari responded with a commercial I couldn’t find, that pointed out the exclusives on Atari’s game console. Intellivision responded with this:
For the record, I had both, but you can see the beginnings of the console Fanboy in these commercials.
PS. If anyone has a link for the Atari “exclusive games” commercial that preceded the last Intellivision commercial, I would really appreciate if you linked me up!
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