As I watch the news and ponder my own life the question arose yesterday. If I do not expect perfection in my own life why would I expect it in a video game? The answer is I do not. The next thing that came to the surface was do I expect too much from triple A titles and is failure of some launches of triple a titles something that is okay.
When I am on my phone and download a free to play game I have limited expectations. Since my investment is zero the quality of the game has yet to be assessed. As I began to play the game I asses its value in the quality of the game, and its true value in how it engages me and whether that translates into me spending money in there micro transactions system. Some games in the genre are awesome, while most fail for me personally, but are still appraised at the correct value. Since there is no upfront investment, the value of the game is subjective in the same manner that the quality of the game is subjective. This leads to some games that from my subjective perspective think are of poor quality to be of high value to to others and the exchange of money is proportional because the transactions are fair and transparent.
Moving to the large concept of Console and PC games; specifically Triple A titles and there difference iin the upfront cost. Now the value of the game is stated in this instance at the start. The price of the game is clear. Unless the publisher or creator has been misleading in the nature of content of the game or in the presence and/or volume of in game purchases. The quality is what is now being reviewed. If the content of the game is simply not to the liking of the reviewer I would deem that subjective. If in turn the quality of the game is poor due to bad programming, poor game mechanics, system integration issues, Deceptive Micro Transaction structures, A large absence of content that was advertised, and other technical issues this would be an objective perspective.
I do not expect games to fail in quality. I also in turn expect some games to not appeal to me. That does not make the games that are unappealing a failure. It simply is a media product that I do not like. I think many people that are in the community of Fallout 76 and other contested titles have confused these two separate albeit similar points. The issue with a larger game like Anthem or fallout 76 is that they are produced and marketed as a premium product. When they do not deliver on the promise they have attached to the price tag there can be no margin allowed for sub par delivery. When Skyrim released it was not perfect. It had its issues as is always the case with any video game. The overall product that was delivered during the Skyrim release was a completed, polished, well created game. It was exactly what it was marketed to be and players accepted the limited amount of bugs and enjoyed the game. Fast forward several years later the same company and publisher release Fallout 76 to a very similar grouping of players that had been blown away with Skyrim. Players could not have had a more different reaction to Fallout 76.
With this simple side by side comparison that is as close to apples to apples as you can get clarifies the point that IP loyalty, Branding, Marketing, and a Company’s history will not make up for selling a poor quality to horrendously broken game to consumers.
Circling back to my initial question; should we expect Triple A games to potentially fail. I have to say yes. The track record of the industry is clear over the last decade. The introduction of the Mobile game consumer has changed the developer/publishers relationship and perspective on the market and what performance means. True gaming in my opinion will almost always take place on a device that has greater capabilities then a touch screen interface. As a member of that community I feel I owe it to myself to be selective. I should not support games that are poor. I should not support publishers with any degree of Faith that have a track record of being less the honest. The Fallout from the most recent Bethesda Game studios release will make me wait to purchase the upcoming Elder scrolls 6 until after launch and reviews can be released that give the honest picture. This is a sad realization to make after years of enjoying and trusting the work of Bethesda. I leave the question to you. Has you trust in Developers and Publishers been eroded?