Weekly Wringer #90: The Awesomeness of Chrono Trigger

Following in the new tradition of the awesomeness of some of our favorite videogame legends, the Commodore today talks about Chrono Trigger. As you can imagine, there’s lots to discuss so grab a beverage and settle in! After sharing your thoughts on the greatest of the SNES classic, the Commodore weighs in with his insight into how this game just seems to be a cut above the rest. After that, it’s time to launch into a new conversation about playing old games on the newest upcoming consoles. It’s the Weekly Wringer!

MP3 Version available here: Weekly Wringer 90

Follow the Commodore on Twitter @ItsTheCommodore


  • Red Mage Red Mage
    Posted February 17, 2013 at 10:29 PM | Permalink

    Streaming backwards compatibility sounds AWFUL, if it is the sole option. However, if it’s a game I don’t own on disc and is priced appropriately, I’m open to the concept. However, in regards to backwards compatibility, ideally I want to simply be able to place my old PS3/2/1 discs in my PS4 and be able to play them as is. Sadly, due to economics and the generally greedy nature of gaming publishers, I know that is not going to happen and this dream is not the likely scenario.

    Let’s be honest, how is the streaming backwards compatibility going to work? It’s likely going to cost money (duh! Having to re-buy games on PSN that I already own on disc) to have streamed on my PS4. Personally, that’s not acceptable as the only option. If the PS4 has a disc drive, I’d expect it at least be able to be backwards compatible with PS2/1 via software emulation since the PS4 should be powerful enough to sufficiently emulate those systems via software.

    PS3? I don’t know. The PS4 will be likely be of very different architecture from the PS3 and might not be powerful enough to emulate the PS3 via software. Streaming, in that case makes sense. I think Sony knows it too which is why they purchased that streaming service company (name of the company eludes me at the moment) a few months back. I don’t own a PS3 or an extensive library of games for it, so this is not an issue to me. If I did I might be slightly annoyed but I do most gaming on the game’s native console. I play PS1 game on PS1, PS2 on PS2 Gamecube on Gamecube and so forth and use the other systems for their own games.

    In all likelihood, PS4’s streaming backwards compatibility is likely going to cost $$$. Maybe on 2/20 when Sony makes their likely PS4 unveil, they’ll announce that games (PS3 and PS1/2 classics( already purchased on PSN accounts will be able to be streamed for free on PS4 (Fat chance. But I am willing to eat those words. If you haven’t built up a significant collection of titles on disc, streaming backwards compatibility might not be bad but for those who haven’t embraced the digital era thus far, it might be hard to take.

    • Red Mage Red Mage
      Posted February 17, 2013 at 10:34 PM | Permalink

      Ugh. I could go on. There are so many other issues with streaming services like ISP bandwith caps that I don’t like but I’ll leave those problems to others to elaborate.

    • Red Mage Red Mage
      Posted March 1, 2013 at 7:37 PM | Permalink

      I didn’t watch the entire PS4 press conference but from what I read of the synopsis there won’t be any disc based backwards with the legacy consoles and it’s still up in the air if the PSN classics and minis will carry over to PS4. Great… disappointing to say the least since the revealed specs of the PS4 sound more than capable to effectively emulate PS1 and 2 via software emulation.

      Sounds like streaming or no BC at all which is no good. I’d like the option.

  • The Male White Mage The Male White Mage
    Posted February 17, 2013 at 10:50 PM | Permalink

    This is an easy answer for me which is no since I just got a PS3 for Christmas. That and I prefer playing games on the hardware they were made for.

    I had to look up about the PS4 streaming capability since this was the first I heard of it and I have to ask is this service going to be supported by other companies since the PlayStation Store currently have PSone and PS2 games but they are few in numbers.

  • Mr. K Mr. K
    Posted February 17, 2013 at 11:18 PM | Permalink

    I think the streaming is something that would make me less likely to buy a PS4. As much as I love Sony, I seem to be coming to a personal breaking point with a lot of companies these days. I’ve been through this in several Wringers before, but I get more and more distressed every day about the lack of physical ownership and the transitioning of property rights from the consumers and into the publishing corporations. It really scares me. I don’t fear the government, I fear business.

    Streaming previous gen games on the PS4 sounds like a terrible idea. What if you have a provider that throttles or limits your bandwidth? It is legal in the US, even though a lot of companies don’t do it. What if you live in a rural area where fiberoptic cable isn’t as prevalent?

    Hell, I live in a moderately-to-fairly-large sized city, and there are still times of the day where you can’t get a functional internet connection because of drag on the system.

    Then you get into the arena of what I believe it was us here at CotGW were discussing a year or so ago (or at least I think it was here, may have been Reddit), where Sony wants to stream advertising directly into the games you’re playing. You’re playing, the ad breaks the action, you watch it, then you’re rolled back a few frames to re-integrate yourself into the action. Streaming games will make that much easier.

    I still own a PSX and a PS2, in addition to my PS3. I no longer have the big gray boy PSX, but I have the little white one. While I know the PS2 and PS3 play PSX games, nine times out of 10, I still play PSX games on my PSX. I’m not entirely sure it’s out of some misplaced sense of nostalgia, but I still do. I guess I never quite jumped on board the reverse compatibility bandwagon.

    When I got robbed in 2010, and whoever did it took my fat body PS3 with the PS2 reverse compatibility, I knew my insurance company would replace my PS3, but I knew they’d require me to buy a brand new one. Which they did. While I never really use the function, it distressed me that I had to get one without the PS2 functionality. Mainly because it was a feature that was stripped away.

    Now companies want to strip away the feature of actually owning a physical medium that will work in your console? NO THANK YOU.

    I come to my final point. Commodore, back before you started doing the Weekly Wringer, you made a post about how Netflix streaming is taking up HALF of the total internet bandwidth available. What’s going to happen if we do this with games?

    • Mr. K Mr. K
      Posted February 17, 2013 at 11:27 PM | Permalink

      I sincerely believe that one day I’m going to load up my computer or a future gaming console and I’m going to get an update message for it. When the update finishes, the screen will go black and it will say “Please go buy the newest model to continue your experience.” And my equipment will never work again, no matter how much I tinker with it.

      Streaming things like games puts us one step closer to that decline.

      • Mog Mog
        Posted February 17, 2013 at 11:35 PM | Permalink

        Disks don’t last very long. They scratch and won’t play. Stupid lens gets dirty and the system is junk. My house burns down and old game companies give me back my old games? With something like Steam you just download them again. It’s awesome. Come check out my CD collection sometime. Listen to them skip. You’ll see why mp3 players are so popular.

        • Red Mage Red Mage
          Posted February 18, 2013 at 12:09 AM | Permalink

          If one treats their games and systems properly, scratching is not an issue. Nearly every single disc based game I purchased new looks as pristine as the day I bought it.

          Granted, discs generally are easily scratched if owners are careless. However, with new disc technologies Blu-Ray scratching is much less of an issue due to the advancements in scratch resistant technologies. Any second-hand blu-ray movies, I’ve seen look absolutely pristine and flawless, I can’t say that is the case with DVD.

          Of course, there’s the issue of disc rot. Yes eventually all the disc based games we buy will eventually rot and become unusable. However, the expected life expectancy of DVD’s is 30-100+ years and blu-ray is even longer. Games I currently own on disc are likely to last longer than the time I’m likely to still care about them and possibly my lifetime. Is that going to be the case with games I purchased on Steam or PSN? That should be an interesting case study. What will last and be available to gamers longer: a physical copy of a dvd/blu-ray game or a digital download. My bet the game purchased on disc will still be usable in 20 years while the game digitally downloaded won’t be re-downloadable on the original service it was purchased on.

          Digital downloads does have some current benefits in SOME instances. With Steam, if your PC breaks, you can CURRENTLY re-download those games to a new PC. However, if the case with Nintendo, if your Wii or 3DS breaks or you sell your console, you lose your games completely. In that case, the digital download is no better than owning the game on disc or cart.

        • Mr. K Mr. K
          Posted February 18, 2013 at 12:36 AM | Permalink

          If your discs are scratched, that has more to do with you than it does your CDs themselves. Maybe you should take better care of your belongings.

          Steam is one of the most dangerous trends in gaming. Gabe Newell may be a good guy, but he’s one heart attack away from that company’s entire philosophy changing. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t own ANY of those games you’ve paid for and downloaded. You’re leasing them. One corporate policy change later and you have no clue what your usage rights to them will be. Ever see the South Park episode about reading Apple’s license agreement? Do you even know what your rights to Steam games are, or if your rights can be amended?

          I can’t remember when it was, but last year, one of the Wringers was about this being the lost generation of gaming, because there’s nowhere near as much physical medium to prove it happened. Anything happens to that data and it’s gone forever.

          I ran across a copy of the FF8 demo that came with Brave Fencer Musashi a month ago, it was released more than 10 years ago. A buddy of mine played the Just Cause 2 demo on Steam for months before the full version was released. On launch day, he was locked out of the demo and was never able to play it again. I can still play my FF8 demo.

          So yeah, I’m on my second SNES when I could have just downloaded the same games via Wii’s virtual console. And yeah, one of these days my discs will rot, but by the time that happens, chances are I will be too old to care.

          • meinerHeld meinerHeld
            Posted February 18, 2013 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

            That last sentence made my heart sink.

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 18, 2013 at 8:52 PM | Permalink

            I have movies (have some kids and try to keep games pristine) that have never gone anywhere but from case to player and back. They don’t work. That 100 year life expectancy crap is such a load. They used to say CDs would last forever. Never skip like stupid records. They lie. There are studies that say it may be as few as 5-10 years and frankly that seems about right to me.

            This “I don’t really own the game!” “I’ll not be able to redownload it!” stuff is all so much paranoia. You don’t “own” any game. You have an account with Nintendo. You can redownload anything.

            But lets say Steam or Nintendo close down tommarrow. It’s like you’ve never been to coolroms or the million other rom sites. It’s like you’ve never downloaded an old computer game and seen the lengths people will go to allow them to be played on new systems. That’s the beauty of the internet. Someone will always have it and/or hack it. I’ve had this same conversation a million different times with a million different people. You’re paranoid. People have been storing their pictures online for decades now.

            That aside. “The things you own end up owning you.”

          • Posted February 18, 2013 at 10:31 PM | Permalink

            “The things you own end up owning you.” – Nailed it.

          • Red Mage Red Mage
            Posted February 19, 2013 at 12:23 AM | Permalink

            I own Sega-CD games that are over 20 years old and haven’t degraded. I have PS1 and Saturn games that are nearly as old and are perfectly fine. My PS2 launch games that are over 10 years old now are also fine. The 5 to 10 year expectancy you posted is likely the low end for discs stored in the harshest of conditions or more even more probable the life expectancy re-writable disc media like cdr-w which are much more volatile. Unless one lives in the tropics with no A/C or climate control in their housing or store their games outside in a shed or something, disc rot should not be an issue. Maybe you’re just really unlucky but disc rot is not an issue I’ve come across nor have any of my other gamer friends have experienced. Nor from what I can tell from spending countless ours on retro game forums, it’s not a widespread issue, yet.

            The games you download on a Nintendo console are tied to one console only. There’s really isn’t an “account” system with Nintendo. If you decided to sell your wii and then decided to buy a new console a few years down the line, you could not recover/re-download any games purchased on the old console.

            Maybe you are ok with going to Coolrom or Home of the Underdogs in the future play future console and PC games. Yes the games will be preserved online in some extent for example on the previously mentioned sites. However, some of us would like to be able to legally play these games as opposed to be forced to technically break copyright laws to re-experience games that will no longer be available or accessible through legal means.

          • Mr. K Mr. K
            Posted February 19, 2013 at 8:00 AM | Permalink

            Two things, Mog:

            1. You’re blaming your children for something that is your own fault: not taking care of your movies and games.

            2. If you didn’t want to put up with that, you should not have had children.

            In 1988, I got $100 from my grandparents for Christmas. In January 1989, I bought three CDs with that money. They were the very first purchase I ever made. My family thought it was time for me to finally handle money in a transaction. I still own those three CDs. I’m looking at them right now. All three still work, not a scratch on them and have outlasted three CD players.

            I still own a Betamax. Our family had a lot of home movies on them. Betamax and cartridges still work. At least far better than any of the crappy $40 VCRs I bought over the years. It’s never been repaired, nor has it ever eaten a cassette.

            When I was in college, I ordered a copy of the first Final Fantasy orchestrated album from eBay. An album that was produced in 1986. It was used from someone in Hong Kong. It made the month long trip here in standard freight conditions and had zero problems. I have no clue what the previous owner’s philosophy of owning things was, so I can’t speak to it, but that CD still works– a CD that has been around for almost 25 years.

            It all has to do with the level of care you give. Sorry your stuff doesn’t work, but don’t paint us all with the same brush.

            Also, if what I said is paranoid, I can’t even imagine what true paranoia is to someone like you.

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 19, 2013 at 1:51 PM | Permalink

            It’s a delicate balance between piracy protection and customer service and Nintendo does pretty well imo.

            CWAGAHOF May 20, 2010 2:19 PM in response to: ONE-OF-THREE
            Re: Wii Virtual Console and the Inability to Move Games “Everything turned out OK! It appears that there was a little confusion with one of the customer service reps I talked to concerning transferring wii shop info. All I had to do was fax in a police report to verify that my Wii had been stolen and they got things done right away. Wheww!!”

            I’ve bought lots of used games. Even with games the kids have played alot and thus left lying around or stacked 3 high in a case, they’re still in better shape then 99 out of every 100 games I’ve bought used. I’m forced to assume I take better care then most. We’re talking averages here. Not all CDs/DVDs are created equal. I’m happy for you most of your stuff still works. I don’t believe it’s typical. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but those betamax cassettes will probably outlive most of your disks. My VHS tapes have faired better than my DVDs.

            We’ve had the copyright conversation before I’m sure. A company that doesn’t exist can’t hold a copyright. They do still exist and you want the games? Someone will be selling them. See the list on Wii’s VC? It’s pretty expansive. I know they have old arcade beat um ups on xbox (that you can play online too. How cool is that?). Why wouldn’t someone take advantage of you wanting old games in the future? Why do you assume people will be selling new CD/DVD players in the future (you have to admit those don’t last. Red Mage is especially lucky having a Sega CD system that works.)? Seems alot easier than replicating old tech to just make software that plays the data. That’s why they do that instead. It’s not a big deal. “God is change.”

            But let’s get at the real root of the problem. You want that Babe Ruth rookie card you can display. I can understand that. Your collection looks impressive I’m sure. Have you tried Beanie babies? Those you can cuddle with at night. ^^

          • Mr. K Mr. K
            Posted February 19, 2013 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

            Wait, you think this is about vanity? That I want physical copies to show off my epeen? Are you kidding me? My games and movies stay in sealed weatherproof cases and come out when I want to use them and go right back in when they aren’t.

            This is about consumer rights and protection. Nintendo will sell you out for a single dime more in profit. The virtual console is DANGEROUS, because if Nintendo feels like it, they can brick your Wii on some trumped up piracy charges and you will have zero access to anything you’ve LEASED from them. Let’s step back from that a moment. What happens when Nintendo stops hosting the Wii store? I guarantee you the things you paid for will no longer work.

            Remember Asheron’s Call? When new content stopped, the servers were immediately closed, and all the progress people had made on their characters was gone. Forever. Now, since then, the came has made a comeback, but that data is still gone, vanished into the ether.

            Now, it may have been Turbine’s decision, but there were people who would have continued to play the game and gladly paid the fee. Just to keep the servers online.

            You cannot trust a corporation. They will sell you out, even if the potential for profit is nominal.

            But go on, worship Nintendo, like you seem to want to do. “Our father, who art Nintendo, Miyamoto be thy name.”

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 1:20 AM | Permalink

            Not at all. Like that show Hoarders. Not saying it’s that extreme or unhealthy with you, but it’s the same basic emotion or predilection or whatever you’d call it. This need to hold on to things. Fill a void in your life or a stability when you feel unstable. Same reason people collect stamps. I mean come on. They’re stamps. Just listen to yourself. “Sealed weatherproof cases”. You don’t see my point?

            You talk about profit. What would it profit Nintendo to have their customers hate them? No company that sells anything wants that. “Brick your Wii” like that and they’re dead. If they’re dead then there is no one to stop anyone from distibuting their stuff anyway.

            I’ve seen mmo’s die. Who cares? Obviously not enough people or they wouldn’t have. It’s not like you can’t still play the games if so inclined. You could always start a private server. I’ve had to replay many games when memory cards wiped. Not a big deal. Apples and oranges anyway. Maintaining a download site and maintaining an mmo are not even in the same league.

            I dumped Nintendo so fast for ps1 and 2. Remember? “God is change.” Nintendo could decide it hates customers, everyone could stop wanting old games, and the internet could cease to exist. Miyamoto could be secretly building a doomsday device that destroys us all. I just don’t find it likely is all.

          • DTX180
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 2:09 AM | Permalink

            Eh, I don’t know if I have the right to inject my opinion after seeing you two go back and forth, but I kinda wanted to say a few things.

            1) I think there is a difference between being a collector and being a “hoarder”. Many hoarders don’t keep the stuff they’ve hoarded over the years in any organized way. They just have it. This is a long debate though. I do think there are many game, movie, music, etc collectors that might get upset when they have to get rid of something, or that they can’t buy something at a specific moment. But to say somebody who collects stamps and says “i mean come on” about it is fairly ill informed. If you are collecting within reasonable financial means, then go for it. Just because you don’t see any fun in it doesn’t mean others can’t.

            2) It would take a lot at this point for nintendo’s customers to “hate them”. I think that should be noted. Blizzard is a perfect example. How long had people been tossing around that “blizzard has never released a bad game” crap that basically allowed blizzard to sell millions of copies of meh WoW expansions and the joke that is Diablo 3 (SC2 wasn’t anything amazing also)? Diablo 3 might finally be the straw that breaks the back, but blizzard still made a ton of cash on it because it was preordered so much.

            A lot of the major companies are “riding their reputation” a bit right now, and people still buy stuff. I blame the midnight release and how every game and their mother has some “midnight launch social event”. These things I think are rapidly contributing to the rise of indie titles. Hell to me the best games last year (and the only games I’ll still talk about 5+ years from now) were FTL and Torchlight II.

            3) With that said, I think people need to weigh their options. Gaming is clearly becoming a service rather than a good. But gamers also seem to be becoming less informed in the industry too. Even though the market might not suit your desires, you have to at some point realize that the majority of people don’t care that these licenses you purchase on steam are only licenses.

            Meh, its late. Just some thoughts for you two.

          • Mr. K Mr. K
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

            Damn. Gaming is a service now and not a commodity.

            You really summed up my entire argument there. I think this is what scares me. Being beholden to a service provider.

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

            DTX “…there is a difference between being a collector and being a “hoarder”.”

            Of course. It’s the difference between a person that has a beer every once in a while and an alcoholic. A hoarder takes it to unhealthy levels. Same base reason though is all I’m saying. Stamps was just an example of something I would find to be collected just for collections sake. My great-grandmother collects sugar packets if that offends less.

            MR. K “Gaming is a service now and not a commodity…this is what scares me…”

            I don’t think you have to worry. Supply and demand. Long as there are people like you that want to “own” things there will likely be someone willing to provide for you. You might want to get used to the idea of a different delivery/storage method though. Data is transfered much easier over the internet and stored much more conveniently on a hard drive. I prefered carts to CD/DVDs. I dealt. Would have missed out on alot of great gaming not getting a ps1.

          • DTX180
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 7:15 PM | Permalink

            Eh, I can actually see where he’s coming from. The whole “Long as there are certain people out there, you will be ok” isn’t entirely true with technology. It goes where things are most efficient and cheap for the companies.

            I knew a few people who still used VCRs and VHS tapes to record things in 2005/2006/2007, or to watch their movies. Mostly senior citizens that I worked for in my early college days, but younger folks too (for recording, not so much movies). Now, what exactly comes out on VHS? Can you even buy blank VHS tapes? Maybe the market exists, but isn’t justifiable because its so small?

            I could definitely see a day where no more physical copies of video games are around. Frankly, I’ll be a bit concerned if EVERY game I buy is similar to WoW, or Steam licenses. What if steam goes under one day? All things end. In 1993 if I told you Sega would be out of the hardware industry within a decade you woulda laughed. The genesis was in the middle of selling 45ish million units (a ton back then). Nintendo and Sony are in pretty bad financial times right now, I could see either one of them one day going to gaming software only.

          • The Male White Mage The Male White Mage
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 8:12 PM | Permalink

            I was going to step into this earlier but was looking up info so DTX180 summed it up better and shorter than I would of about it being a service.

            However I will still add most people don’t read the Term and Conditions when paying for digital downloads which is where a problem lays.

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 20, 2013 at 11:46 PM | Permalink

            I’m not saying CD/DVD whatever disks will always exist. I don’t think they will. (though you can still buy blank tapes. Least I bought a bunch a few years ago.) That doesn’t mean games won’t be available for purchase. Your fears are unfounded.

            Take Daggerfall for example. Go download it for free right now from Bethesda’s site. (seriously if you havn’t played it it’s pretty good. Do the patch though.) Say the company no longer exists. Well then there is no one to stop anyone from distributing it. You owned it? Need a new copy? So get one. Your copy of CronoCross burns and try getting a new one for free. That’s what everthing being digital means.

            Lots of people freaked out about banks and everything being digital. It’s not a big deal. Why do people use banks? Because you keep your money under your matress? It’s liable to get stolen. Your house could burn down and it’s gone.

            This “Term and Conditions” stuff. You never “owned” any game. DRM and license agreements existed before the popularity of digital download. Owning every last part of a game was never on the table. You owned the rights to play it. Nothing more. With digital download. You own the right to play it. Nothing more. SFW.

          • DTX180
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 1:53 AM | Permalink

            Somebody will own the rights to Crono Cross, even if its not squeenix. If bethesda goes under, I’d be willing to bet another company will have the rights to daggerfall. And with copyright laws so screwed up right now (life plus 80 years i believe is the norm now….which is a straight up joke), I could see a lot of things

            The internet, like everything else, is always changing. For all we know the way to access said data could be lost. Its not that impossible to conceptualize.

            The bank analogy is somewhat poor in this case. People were freaking out because the internet was an unknown. But your money was there. If you wanted to, you could withdraw your money. However now we have seen pieces of the internet be lost. Think of all the data that was lost with geocities. Or thousands of message boards where posts weren’t archived, just wiped from storage. It seems insignificant to a large scale game, but the concept is there.

            I think were gonna disagree on this all week. I think the state of the video game industry is honestly a great small scale metaphor for the entire US economy. The US economy has been moving from a good to a service based economy since post WW2, and especially since the tech revolution of the 1980s. The question is, how sustainable is a service based economy? How sustainable is gaming based on a service? When no goods are transferred, is there even a purpose of many of these services?

          • The Male White Mage The Male White Mage
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 3:11 AM | Permalink

            Exactly Mog, you own the right to use it. However the difference between the license agreement of a physical copy and a digital copy is that I can give away my physical copy, which is where a problem lays since people still think that with digital downloads you can do the same.

          • The Bowtie Guy The Bowtie Guy
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 6:18 AM | Permalink

            Like it or not, digital copies (and yes, this does imply ROMs and emulators) are much easier to preserve. I don’t like to use emulators, but I don’t have a vendetta either, like you seem to. Question the legality and authenticity if you will – it’s perfectly valid to do so – but which is better? Use a digital copy or lose the game to history? For reference, my favorite game of all time is Deus Ex. I would not have played it in the first place were it not for digital copies. I am now playing through System Shock 2. There is no way in hell that I would have gotten my hands on a copy were it not for the recent re-release on GOG. The simple fact is that while digital copies may feel less “authentic” to some, they are much easier to release and thus a more stable method of preservation.

          • DTX180
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 8:34 AM | Permalink

            Oh i mean, I love GOG. I think thats a great digital distribution service, and I highly recommend it. Its just its the only company I know that handles digital distribution that way.

            If every company handled digital distribution that way, I’d probably be 100% on board

          • DTX180
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

            To add (they need a edit button….), I’m not sure I agree that digital copies are easier to preserve. Due to legality and the issues that arise.

            I don’t think we have copyright laws that really allow digital preservation to be effective. When a work has a copyright law of life of the author plus 80 years, can we really effectively preserve these games? You can’t just say “and yes, this does imply roms and emulators” like that because you are now saying “its ok, digital copies allow preservation, although it could land you in jail. At least doing so right now could, but that could change!”. To me planning your stance and argument around something that is currently and has always been illegal….shows the complexities and potential ineffectiveness of digital preservation.

            I also think your story about Deus Ex and System Shock 2 are anecdotal, and that plenty of people could play old games through other means. I mean, we did so before digital distribution. What attracted you to Deus Ex was how convenient it was right to get right now. Things like steam are extremely convenient….for the time being. The question is, will have so much time have passed that we won’t care when steam goes under. Be it 6 months or 50 years.

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 8:44 PM | Permalink

            DTX “If every company handled digital distribution that way, I’d probably be 100% on board.”

            I don’t see why more companies wouldn’t do it like GOG when you vastly prefer it. That’s how business works. You like the way they do business you buy from them and they do well.

            Roms aren’t illegal and games were alot harder to come by. Any idea how much Roo spent on that prototype Mother? Who is the evil entity that will buy up every license, spend the money to prosecute offenders, and at the same time not offer the games for sale should you lose your digital copy like you easily lose a physical one (when you can also make backup copies. Why roms are legal.)?

          • The Bowtie Guy The Bowtie Guy
            Posted February 21, 2013 at 10:49 PM | Permalink

            GOG is a bastion of ethical digital distribution. I really do wish more people did things like GOG. I buy from GOG whenever I can – screw Steam’s social networking when I can get games DRM free.

            Again, I don’t really like emulators that much, but I think that their existence is justified. Were it not for them, I would not have played some of my favorite SNES games (Shin Megami Tensei II, Live-A-Live, Dragon Quest III Remake). Also, there’s now an audience for older games that probably wouldn’t even know of their existence. There’s a whole new audience experiencing the classics of yonder because of them. Thus, I can certainly understand hostility towards emulation, but it shouldn’t be outright vilified.

          • Mog Mog
            Posted February 22, 2013 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

            THE BOWTIE GUY“…DRM free.”

            I read this really interesting article about DRM. One company that used alot of DRM, released a game as kindof a test study. Didn’t put any form of DRM on it at all. Told consumers they were trusting them to pay for it. Must have gone well. They havn’t released a game with DRM since. Other games. I think one of the Assasin Creeds was used as an example. Was released on multiple sites. So a version without DRM and a version with. Vast majority of pirated versions they found were versions with the DRM cracked and not copies of the DRM free version. My personal issue is with security and the door it invites hackers to use with a constant need to verify purchase. Want something to vilify and it should be overly intrusive DRM and not very legal backup copies of games. Evidence seems to suggest most people aren’t thieves and will purchase at reasonable prices when given the opportunity. Music makes a good example. Some sites you have a membership. Some you buy each song or album. Both ways do well. Pirate music sites obviously aren’t a huge problem.

  • Mog Mog
    Posted February 17, 2013 at 11:29 PM | Permalink

    The only reason I ever even considered PS3 was so I could play Marvel vs. Capcom 2 online. I really like downloading old Nintendo/snes/n64 games on the Wii/WiiU. Downloading ps2 games I would really dig. PS3 games I could kindof care less about though. Reason I never bought a ps3. Never had that like “must have” game. xbox had a few exclusives I feel sorry for having missed. PS3 had what? Journey? One hour long indy game doesn’t seem like a huge selling point, but I guess it would be somewhat.

    To sum up. PS2 games = huge selling point. PS3 games? Meh.

  • Posted February 18, 2013 at 12:54 AM | Permalink

    LOL Well this is crazy, but I only JUST got PS3 recently – for Ni no Kuni. I specifically bought a 60 gig model because of its backward compatibility with PS2 games. I seriously don’t understand why PS3 consoles don’t ALL have backward compatibility. I can’t understand why a PS3 can’t emulate its earlier iterations other than forcing you to buy the game again via the PSN.

    I mean, I totally get why a Game Cube isn’t backwards compatible with N64, they’re wildly different formats. But why -in this digital age – isn’t there some code or proof of purchase you can enter so those older games can be played regardless of console? You bought it but now you can’t play it?

    Look, I completely respect that the companies want to make money. But the PS 1-3 pretty much use the same controller. It completely baffles me that the backward compatibility thing – which was a major selling point when jumping from PS1 to PS2 – is now generally being squashed.

    And please forgive me if I don’t fully grasp this week’s question, I’ve stayed fairly far from new console news. As you can see I am very ‘up to date’ on things having just bought a PS3. Truly what sold me on it was there was A SINGLE GAME I could not live without playing. And it was console exclusive or I’d be playing it on Steam or a 360 right now. Seriously? I was very tempted to go with a 360 because the console exclusives didn’t seem that different. But like I chose a PS1 over an N64 because of Final Fantasy – Like I chose PS2 over Xbox because it had FFX, I chose a PS3 for an RPG. Backward compatibility helped sell me the PS2 because it has a damn fine PS1 library.

    I can’t say the PS4 will have that advantage. I don’t know of very many “MUST OWN” PS3 exclusive titles that I’d even want to play into the PS4 epoch. They’re either one and done, or also available on Steam. And you know what? I have a 360 controller for those :D.

    “Streaming” PS3 games also sounds… um…. well… Eh? I’m not sure I like or dislike the idea. All I know is that property is changing. My Steam games belong to me because of my account. If the PSN does the same thing with the PS4 then we might have a deal. And then that opens the whole can of worms about used games – can I, can’t I?

    • Red Mage Red Mage
      Posted February 18, 2013 at 7:10 AM | Permalink

      The newer PS3 models can only play PS2 games released as PS2 classics on PSN because apparently the games have to some of their code re-built to run on PS3.

      The oldest PS3 models actually had the PS2 Emotion Engine and Graphics Synthesizer chips inside the system to allow for backwards compatibility, part of the reason why Sony was bleeding money with every PS3 sold. They first cut out the Emotion Engine in later models and then eventually Graphics Synthesizer as well to cut manufacturing costs on the PS3. When they completely removed those chips, backwards compatibility was removed at the same time.

  • DTX180
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 2:19 AM | Permalink

    It doesn’t have much of an effect on me. I think both digital downloading and physical copies have positives and negatives. I kinda agree with Mr. K, and that the way companies are handling digital distribution is very dangerous, and most gamers don’t seem to know what they are getting into.

    With that said, I’m gonna say something that might cause people to hate my post, but keep in mind this is coming from a huge retro gamer….

    I think backwards compatibility is starting to see large diminishing returns, and the PS4 should just focus on PS4 games. How much of an increase in price of consoles comes from technology for backwards compatibility? Would streaming PS3 games be a cheap alternative? We all know the PS3 had a ton of backwards compatibility issues, and the (what seems like) 20 different models of PS3 units.

    So if streaming is a cheaper alternative and can keep the PS4 cost lower, then I’m cool with it. I suppose people who don’t want tons of console units around their TV put more precedent on backwards compatibility, but its not a big deal to me. I will say I’m a tad biased with not caring because I still own my PS1, PS2 (although they are boxed up somewhere) and have a PS3 from the MGS4 bundle which was compatible with PS1 and PS2 games. But PS2s are about $40 on ebay now, and the PS3 will probably get to under $150ish when the PS4 has been saturated in the market. Backwards compatibility isn’t as big of a selling point to me anymore.

    Now maybe if there was a way to convert my physical copies to digital so I could have a set of both…..

  • SmokePants
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

    We’re going to know on Wednesday (Feb 20th) a lot more when Sony unveils the PS4. I will say that streaming is the only way backward compatibility with PS3 games can work. Two reasons: 1) the Cell architecture was a financial failure and a liability for developers and they won’t be carrying it forward in the PS4. And 2) the PS3 security was cracked. Any hacker can sign his own code and run it on an unmodified PS3 and, if they allowed backward compatibility, PS4. So, I’ve known for two years that BC would be impossible for PS4, unless they did something foolhardy like porting everything over or…. streaming PS3 games over the internet.

    I don’t think that’s actually going to happen. It might be something they are flirting with after their acquisition of Gaikai, but the technical and practical challenges seem insurmountable. If it does happen, it’s probably not going to be at launch and it’s probably not going to be every game (maybe just PSN games), and they’re probably hoping like Hell that it’s a feature that everyone wants, but no one actually uses.

    I own 3 PS3 games and play(ed) them on someone else’s PS3. So, I’m not exactly invested in that platform. I will admit that knowing that BC wasn’t going to happen for years now has kept me from adding to my paltry collection. The next Xbox may not have backward compatibility, either, but it at least has a shot at it. But I really place value on buying games on Steam where I know I’ll be able to play almost everything for as long as I own a Windows PC.

    I should note that I own over 100 steam games and have only played about 25 of them. So, at least for me, the idea of BC being something that people want but don’t actually use bears out. It’s just nice to know I can, even if I don’t.

    Getting back to the question, a streaming solution for backward compatibility would not interest me, even if it were for a platform in which I was invested. I don’t believe such a service will actually launch. If it launches, I don’t believe it’s going to give me a responsive experience. And if it gives me a responsive experience, it’s only a matter of time before they discontinue the service to save money.

  • Markies
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 11:49 AM | Permalink

    Absolutely not!

    To be completely fair and honest, I have resigned myself as a complete retro gamer. The latest console I currently own is a PS2 and I have no interest in owning a Wii/PS3/360. So, for me to jump a generation does not interest me at all nor the ability to stream games from the PS3.

    I have had this discussion with my gamer friends as we are mostly retro gamers, but they have dipped their toes in the modern consoles by owning some Wii’s & a DS. I loathe the idea of streaming or digital content. I have heard way too many stories of people’s consoles dying and then loosing all of their games. I hate buying anything digital be it games, music or movies. I want the physical copy of that medium in my hands. I want to know that I can pop them in years from now and still be able to play them.

    I will say though that I bought my PS2 for the reason to play PS1 & PS2 games on them. At the beginning, I was interested in doing that with the PS3, but the quality of those games on the system is just terrible. So, at one time backwards compatibility was a great idea. Now, not so much.

    No thank you from this retro gamer!

  • meinerHeld meinerHeld
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 1:24 PM | Permalink

    Wow Red Mage, your comments completely derailed what I was going to say, and turned me back to the broader reality. Thanks. Allow me to explain.

    I was going to write something along the lines of a “take your medicine, cartridge fanboys (I’m one), get out of the past and realize that the internet has made things better for everyone, gamers included.” But I overlooked the details, and the devil’s in the details. Namely, most publicly traded corporations (a ridiculous idea on its face, imo) are not here to serve us. Motive is all-important when we consider any move by a company (and by anyone), and publicly traded companies, by the professions of most, are here to serve those who own stock in their company. What ever happened to “I want to give people enjoyment by making something entertaining, fun, thought-provoking, and occasionally profound?” Love of money–that’s what happened.

    And here we have yet another attempt by a company to try and own every bit of an experience they were once just a player in. Or actually, we have at least two attempts: the back-streaming, and the rumored and patented idea to tie a disc to a single user.

    Ugh. But hey, as long as these companies keep allowing development of beautiful and awesome new games, and as long as we’re not forced to be double- and triple-charged, I’ll continue to buy. Unless something else tickles my fancy more. And no one’s forcing us to re-buy a game we already own on the virtual console. And none of these other schemes are coming to fruition…yet. So maybe somebody up there is watching out for us after all. And who knows–maybe they’ll open up back-compatibility to discs. At this point, nothing is set in stone…or in silicon.

  • Cobaltium
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    No. I would have bought a PS3 if it had backwards compatibility (since I had a PS2) and then maybe I would have, but having the ability to stream a console’s games that I never had has no impact on me.

    I’d like to switch it to the idea of backwards compatibility in general. Its absolutely a brand loyalty device. Of course I’m going to buy a Wii U because it has Wii support and the same thing with the PS2 being compatibile with the original PS. I like being able to enjoy the newer games, putting older consoles in storage until I have to break them out when they lose support for said console (So I broke out my gamecube because the Wii U doesn’t have support for it anymore). That’s almost a nice thing though, because taking out my gamecube from storage was AWESOME. It felt great, and like I had re-discovered a new friend. All of a sudden, I’m replaying a bunch of Gamecube games (Metroid Prime and Sunshine come to mind) that I never felt like playing when the Wii was the console I was playing them on. Backwards compatibility should be standard nowadays, there’s no reason for it not to be! I bought an Xbox 360 and a Wii last generation, but I would have replaced the 360 for the PS3 if I had been able to play Jak & Daxter, NFL Street 2, and all my other PS2 games on the PS3 (I’m a two current generation console guy…especially with the similarities between PS3 & 360 in terms of AAA games). I stay loyal if companies are willing to make my old investments seem new, whether thats taking new consoles out of boxes with the ability to play old games, or taking old friends back out into the light.

  • Posted February 18, 2013 at 8:33 PM | Permalink

    I am sick of streaming now. I do not like having to be online so often, especially with single player games. I not need to announce what I am doing to others, I simply want to play my game. But that is not the main issue.

    Think about those times while watching Netflix and you are enjoying a movie and the internet flickers just a little bit, then you have to wait for your movie to reload, or exit to the menu and start anew. Now think about playing a game like Dark Souls or Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2, you finally after 100 tries lay the finishing blow on a boss with your partner and are just waiting for it to save and it flickers, progress is now lost. Seeing as how demanding this would be for people with limited internet use, I could see this happening often and people would lay a tactical strike upon their console. It is one thing if it is your fault buggering up, but when the console does it, that is reason to lose it haha. I have played/owned hundreds of PS3 games, I will just keep the console and turn it on when I want to play them.

    I love Sony, they have some of the best games ever created in their respective genre: Shadow of the Colossus, Symphony of the Night, Suikoden II, Fatal Frame II, etc. But I can not defend them as of late, I fear that this is the end of days for them after all of these goofy mistakes they have made. I hope it does not happen, Sony seems to always be willing to take some major risks with their exclusive software and I admire that; but it could happen.

    I think streaming backwards compatibility is just one of the nails in the coffin. It looks like I am going to be ending my support of new consoles unless some drastic changes are made. The WiiU is not even coming close to its potential, the new Sony console does not seem to have much going for it and the new Microsoft console is not going to be anything special as it will just be the play it safe console for shooters.

    I am interested to know if people here are going to be buying (or have bought) these new consoles and what they think of the future of gaming. I believe the potential for great things is here, but no one is truly utilizing it.

    • Mog Mog
      Posted February 18, 2013 at 10:02 PM | Permalink

      I have a WiiU and not an issue at all what you’re talking about. Nothing forces you to be online. I don’t have to be online to play the games I’ve downloaded even. Oh and two screens for two local players is pretty damn cool even if that’s all they ever use it for.

      • Posted February 18, 2013 at 10:28 PM | Permalink

        Sorry I should have clarified my statement. Not all games do this, but certain ones require you to be online even while playing alone or in single player. Like when my internet was being repaired and I put in my Super Meat Boy CD and tried to play, but since I could not connect to steam (in spite of the disc being in and the game installed), I could not play.

        My problem with the WiiU is that it has games which are on other consoles with better controllers, or games which after the gimmick effect has dwindled, aren’t very good. I played all of the games in Nintendo Land and got bored even with a friends by my side. I hope the WiiU changes its pace, like putting an intuitive and fluid Fatal Frame (or something like that) game on it which gives reason for that clunky controller.

        For the time being I think it is just neat, but does not offer much substance. I really am not trying to be pessimistic, I want every game and console to be a booming success. I love when everyone is happy and companies are producing quality work. I just don’t see where the 400 dollars went at this point in time.

        My fault for not clarifying, I hope I didn’t dig myself further down. Thanks for the reply!

        • Mog Mog
          Posted February 19, 2013 at 4:11 PM | Permalink

          DRM is a seperate issue and one that is on the individual game publishers. I’m totally on board with hating on DRM. Some DRM is really intrusive, open to abuse, frustrating for legit users, and been proven unnecesary. Let’s hope the publishers that do this sort of thing will see their sales suffer and change their policies. I think they will. I remember having to look through the instruction book for a code each time to play some computer games. Was annoying, easily cracked and is now gone.

          I have a pro controller and is nice, but I don’t mind the gamepad used as a normal controller either. I can understand your feelings though. Like my daughter who is a little young for Mario. She really likes helping on the gamepad. Two adults playing this way would make the game hella too easy though. Nintendoland is much the same. Definately geared towards families with varied aged children as opposed to groups of adults imo. Where it’s a nice controller for adults or older kids is for example Warriors: Orochi. Usually playing 2 player with the Dynasty Warrior games they split the screen and hinder your view quite a bit. It’s pretty cool each getting your own screen. Also nice is playing while someone else is using the tv. Would be cool if more used the controller more inventively, but I’m ok with it as is I guess is my feeling. I do have a family with younger children and can see where the games currently cater more to my situation than others for sure though.

  • The Bowtie Guy The Bowtie Guy
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 10:29 PM | Permalink

    I have a PS3 and won’t get rid of it, so any sort of appeal PS3 backwards compatibility has is completely lost on me. Streaming backwards compatibility is a negative to me, actually. Instead, I will just ramble about why I will not buy a PS4.

    The rumors about the DRM are rather unsettling. No used games? Constant internet connection? Commercials that force you to yell “MCDONALDS” to get back to your game? Augh. Most of these probably won’t happen, but there’s a hint of truth to every rumor, and the fact that these exist does indicate that the PS4 will have some sort of intensive DRM. A game being on a console should be enough DRM in the first place. Piracy rates on consoles are really quite low, and the addition of more and more DRM is simply Quixotic.

    Streaming video games is actually a rather stupid idea at this point. Livestreamed video quality is bad enough as it is, but when you need to send commands, too, it’s just ridiculous. It would feel like a very solid step backwards. Not even something like Ni No Kuni could convince me to buy a steaming console.

    The way things are going, I’m probably going to just build a PC and game with that. DRM is bad on the PC, but at least I can customize it and do what I want with it.

    Also, as a grammar freak, I have to say that you shouldn’t have put an apostrophe in that sentence.

    • Mog Mog
      Posted February 19, 2013 at 4:53 PM | Permalink

      Like I just posted. That sort of DRM is just dumb as hell. Dangerous and unnecessary. Not likely a trend though. Take Microsoft Office for example. It doesn’t need to verify online each time you use it. Some game companies are just being stupid noobs.

      • The Bowtie Guy The Bowtie Guy
        Posted February 21, 2013 at 12:23 AM | Permalink

        And this is why I’m hoping for another crash. In terms of business, the video game industry is stuck in an early twentieth century capitalist mentality – entitles, disrespectful of customers, and just too big to allow. This state of affairs cannot last. I sincerely hope it doesn’t, really.

  • RetroGamerTy
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 7:21 PM | Permalink

    I will be honest, I am excited for the PS4 but I am also not a PS3 owner. I feel that I have missed out but with the price of a PS3 still at $200 at GameStop and not too much cheaper without there being some serious problems with it on ebay, I have not experienced the gameplay of the PS3 has the rest of you more seasoned veterans to the console. Personally though, backwards compatibility to me seems important, especially for those of us who may purchase the PS4 as our first PlayStation console in general and would like to experience the games exclusive to PS3. I personally have been a Nintendo exclusive owner until a year ago but I have always loved hooking the Gamecube controllers into my Nintendo Wii and playing the nostalgic games from my childhood. And even now, putting Wii games into my WiiU makes me feel brought back. Without backwards compatibility with the original discs, I simply do not feel comfortable with it. I do not own an Xbox360 either but from all of the “red light of death” I hear among the 360 owners, I am not too interested in a console that is going to be based mainly on its servers and not truly playable without full time connectivity. Call me old fashioned (even though I am only 19), but I like to hold the discs in my hands and know I own it. DRM is not comfortable to me because although the Internet is powerful and evolving everyday, that does not mean everything will be peaches and cream on it. It also makes me feel as if I am having to purchase the games that I already own a second time which also turns me away. As MOG stated, it is stupid, dangerous and unnecessary and my new version of Microsoft Office with SkyDrive is the perfect example. SkyDrive uses the Cloud now and I love it but it is also cool that I can work offline which is my case at certain times. Now compare that to the Chromebook which you have no real hard drive and must be connected to the Internet 24/7 in order to use its services. I know I am on a tangent, but it feels the same to me. I am not much of one to write an essay for a Daily Wringer question every week but I will say that I 100% will stick to my guns and use my WiiU for this generation entirely if PS4 turns out to be a bust on its features and how it will be utilized as according to the current rumors floating around.

  • Zork86
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 9:18 PM | Permalink

    I’m back, I didn’t care to comment on a lot of the topics previously or just had nothing to add since the Symphony of the Night discussion. I’ve still not played Chrono Trigger so I can’t comment on it. Before anyone says anything, I grew up a Sega/PC kid. Didn’t have Nintendo systems until the Gamecube and didn’t know there was a copy of Chrono Trigger available on the PS1 until a few years ago. I have it now, and just like all the other games I’ve accumulated I will eventually get around to playing it!

    As for this news of the PS4 streaming PS3 games and what not. It doesn’t really affect me in terms of whether or not I’d purchase it. I have a perfectly operational PS3 (slim) that hasn’t given me any issues whatsoever. The PS2 (fat) I bought in 2002 still works fine. Really, I don’t even know why they can’t just make the system’s hardware able to play the older games. I understand the PS3’s architecture is pretty complex but you’re telling me the PS3’s successor can’t play it’s games through hardware or emulation?

    If I have anything to say about the streaming it’s two things.

    1) If it’s a matter of cost, is it really more cost effective to keep servers up that stream these games on demand on top of maintenance, upgrades or what have you rather than to integrate this feature into the hardware somehow which over time will probably be cheaper and cheaper to do.

    2) Streaming games and streaming movies or TV shows are two very different things. I don’t think our infrastructure would be ready for something that demanding. When streaming media like this webshow or an episode of a TV show or a movie, it’s static content, it’s already been recorded and nothing is changing. A video game has constant input, a framerate to keep up, and I can’t even begin to imagine what it would be like to play a game with online multiplayer while it’s being streamed. There’s no way all of that can be kept up on.

    If anyone wants to call me out on my ignorance on the intricacies of streaming, by all means do so. I never claimed I knew what I was talking about, this is just what I think will happen. But at the end of the day, when it comes to this topic I just have to ask this question.

    Who asked for this? Was there some kind of demand for a feature like this?

    As far as I can tell, no, there wasn’t. I think by and large most people would prefer to just be able to buy their game digitally and play it or just have the hardware play your old games. I know that this announcement doesn’t do anything for me at all.

    • The Bowtie Guy The Bowtie Guy
      Posted February 21, 2013 at 12:30 AM | Permalink

      It’s a lot more complicated than “JUST THROW IN BACKWARDS COMPATIBILITY.” To be backwards compatible, you a device to either have a certain architecture or be able to emulate it. PS3 emulation is nonexistent and PS2 emulation is a mess, even Sony’s own PS2 classics service (it seems to randomly delete saves and classic releases have been outright canceled due to compatibility), and actual backwards compatibility would just be too expensive (remember the FIVE NINETY NINE U. S. DOLLARS fiasco?). I suppose there is a certain logic to streaming backwards compatibility in that it avoids all these problems. However, I would have actually preferred no backwards compatibility. The implications that come with streaming backwards compatibility are incredibly horrifying – if streaming games becomes standard, what about preservation? What about user modifications? What do we do when the servers drop? What about BASIC CONSUMER PROTECTION LAWS?
      Of course, he who yells loudest is heard most, and I’m sure that all my worst fears will come to pass within the next decade unless we see another crash sometime soon.

      • Zork86
        Posted February 21, 2013 at 6:43 PM | Permalink

        I know it’s more complicated than that, but they should probably plan around the idea of it rather than move ahead to make the most complex and powerful architecture you can then say “Oh, what about Backwards compatibility?”, it’s funny how all this worked out for the PS2 and the Wii perfectly but the 360 and PS3 is bogged down in it’s own complexity.

        • Legion
          Posted February 28, 2013 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

          Sony is trying to rectify this, which is why they are moving to an x86 architecture with PS4 instead of custom hardware as was done in all the other PlayStations. Going forward, if there’s a PS5, it will be simple to play PS4 games on it. The problem is moving to x86 makes backwards compatibility (BC) with PS3 near impossible. Embedding PS3 hardware into the PS4 for BC would inflate the cost of the console a lot. They’d either price themselves out of the market or take a loss on each console sale. Given Sony’s current financial situation I don’t think they can afford the loss.

  • Lewel
    Posted February 21, 2013 at 3:25 PM | Permalink

    For me, I really don’t have much love for it. I’m a collector as well as a gamer; I love to own physical copies of my games and I like the idea of being able to put in a disc and play whenever I so choose.

    My issues with it:

    1) What if my internet goes down, how am I suppose to be able to play my games? I can’t? I have lived in a variety of areas, some of which have great lines and some have udder crap. What if I lived in student housing or a dorm? I would hate for my gaming experience to be dependent on my ISP, which is monopolized by certain companies in my area.

    2) What if Sony does in fact go under? What will be the first thing to go? Exactly. Call me paranoid, but Sony hasn’t particularly been successful since the PS2 and hasn’t really been able to get much off the ground; the move flopped (though I will admit it’s fun light gun hardware), the vita looks to be a flop, and what happens if the PS4 flops? I personally think that this is the deciding point for Sony’s future.

    The good:

    1) Though Gaikai isn’t particularly required, I do like the idea of full libraries for the previous consoles becoming available. The idea of being able to download some of the more rare, obscure, or never heard of titles intrigues me; having the capability to purchase lets say, Suikoden 2 for a reasonable price. This is also assuming all these publishing companies are on board with this and every game actually becomes available. I certainly won’t hold my breath.

    To sum up, I think this is just a bandaid for Sony’s backwards compatibility issue, which is a major complaint about the current PS3. In reality, the hardware (to my understanding) is exceedingly expensive to make next gen consoles have the capability to be fully backwards compatible. If this keeps the price of the PS4 down, I’m all for it, just as long as Sony continues to release the bulk of their new games in physical form. As a Playstation fanboy, I’m excited for the PS4 and the capabilities of the system, but I also have no intentions of ever touching this feature.

  • TreuloseTomate TreuloseTomate
    Posted February 22, 2013 at 8:33 AM | Permalink

    It should only be called backward compatibility, if I can put a PS3 game disc into the PS4 and play the game like that. It’s the same issue I’ve had with the Wii’s virtual console. You can play all old Nintendo games, sounds great on paper. But only if you are willing to buy old games you already own. I know you are paying for the service to play old games without having to have the old consoles connected to the TV, but you have to pay that for every game.
    I don’t know how exactly the streaming is supposed to work on the PS4, but if you have to be online in order to play a PS3 game, that’s just horrible and doesn’t make the PS4 more appealing to me. Another potential problem is, like with the Wii’s virtual console, that only a few PS3 games might be available at lauch, if any. And the rest of them will get slowly released over time. How do I know when the games I’m interested in are going to be released? How much will they cost? Maybe it’s better buy them for the PS3 instead.

  • Askew_Taboo Askew_Taboo
    Posted February 23, 2013 at 12:08 AM | Permalink

    I am not averse to physical copies of media disappearing. I’ve primarily been a PC gamer this generation and the majority of my games have been acquiesced digitally. Music has already been basically universally accepted as being purely digital. I think gamers are going through what my Dad did when Itunes entered the scene. My Dad collected CD’s and owns a huge assortment of them. He, like gamers now, was averse to this idea of digitally acquiring media. Now he uses Itunes and YouTube for his musical needs as everyone else does.

    Following the footsteps of music and movies it only makes sense that publishers and developers would want to bring gaming to the streaming limelight. I find the idea of streaming games to be incredibly enticing. It sounds amazing having a version of YouTube whose primary function is to play games. Unfortunately, I don’t believe we have the capabilities to have game streaming be very reliable, yet. It’d be amazing if ISPs would upgrade their technologies to allow for faster downloading/uploading speeds as well as less constrictive bandwidth, but as it stands even videos have the occasional hiccups when streaming. I think gaming with these sort of problems would be tenfold.

    That being said, I do believe we are heading towards an age where digital distribution will be the norm for all media. While I have my doubts about streaming video games; I do believe that this new generation will be placing more emphasis on having games be more easily obtained digitally.

  • mrandycretin mrandycretin
    Posted February 23, 2013 at 9:46 PM | Permalink

    i can’t believe i missed last week’s. would have loved to put my two cents on chrono trigger.

  • TheBeerNinja TheBeerNinja
    Posted February 23, 2013 at 10:33 PM | Permalink

    Streaming older games instead of having physical backwards compatibility is dependent upon if the service works. Fortunately, Sony purchased Gaikai and it appears they can deliver.

    I would rather companies focus all their efforts on running games for the system that the game was designed to be played instead of wasting space and processing power on old titles. If someone really wants to play an old game that person can hold on to the old system (I own about ten). Ports to online marketplaces are good for people that missed a classic the first time around or just want to have it on a current system. An updated version of a game to polish graphics and framerates is another welcome offering.

    Streaming older titles is a fantastic idea because a new system does not need to contain the components to play the past system’s discs. Where this concept gets very interesting is if Sony decides to pair streaming with their Playstation Plus service. A standard user without Playstation Plus should be allowed to purchase the rights to stream any chosen game from the offered library, but a Playstation Plus subscriber should gain access to the streaming service as part of the fee paid. Placing classics like Uncharted, God of War, and other Playstation exclusives on the streaming list would be a pretty sweet incentive to subscribe to Playstation Plus. By offering PS1, PS2, and PS3 games, the value would be amazing, especially if a strong list is ready at the PS4 launch.

    Streaming works for movies and it can work for games too. Paying for the option to play many high quality titles rather than buying individual licenses gives gamers plenty of choices in addition to purchasing new PS4 games. I keep hearing about how Gamefly doesn’t ever have the games people want so if Sony can guarantee people can play the games they desire when they want, that is a major accomplishment. I don’t purchase many physical games, but I would gladly support a subscription service with 20-50 games at any given point.

  • HighElvenGamer
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 7:20 PM | Permalink

    I’m still puzzled why people talk about Earthbound like it’s Final Fantasy 6 or something.I suppose Nostalgia could be to blame in that case.But to say that Nostalgia is why people think Chrono Trigger is awesome.Anyone who doesn’t think Chrono Trigger is awesome is one of 2 things.They are either Completely incapable of enjoyment.Or they are just contrarians trying stand out.

  • Legion
    Posted February 28, 2013 at 9:56 PM | Permalink

    Streaming of old games doesn’t influence my decision to buy or not buy a PS4. Mostly because it’s a feature I don’t see myself using.

    I’m not a fan of streaming anything beyond YouTube videos. Internet access doesn’t have the reliability I would want for playing games, multiplayer aside.

    Look at what happened with Diablo 3. The servers crashed from the user load and in that case they didn’t even have to render the game, encode video and stream it to you, all while maintaining low latency.

    Realistically, I see two possibilities. First, it could suck right out of the gate and nobody uses it. Or B, it works well at the beginning but becomes a victim of its own success and as more people flock to the service, performance degrades.

    On the economic side I’m not sure how attractive it is either. Backwards compatibility is good for a new console. For people with the predecessor console it offers the convenience of a single device. But it also makes a new console’s first year a bit more palatable for early adopters. Every new console’s first year suffers from a dearth of titles. Even if people want to see new titles, being able to choose from a catalog of hundreds is better than staring at a shelf in GameStop with only 15 games on it.

    But Gaikai isn’t really backwards compatibility. If I have a library of PS3 games, I still can’t stick them in a PS4 and play. Personally, I wouldn’t want to pay to stream play what I already own, on the PS4.

    I think Sony should try to distance the Gaikai service from “backwards compatibility”, because that really limits it’s potential scope. Why not bill it as a Virtual Console and have games from every platform available? Licensing aside, there’s no hardware reason that only PlayStation titles should be available.

  • Lanlost
    Posted March 16, 2013 at 3:28 AM | Permalink

    Hey man,

    I really hope you see this because I registered this account solely for this comment..

    I just had something to say about your comment that was regarding Chrono Cross and the music. In said comment you mentioned that one of the great things about Chrono Chross and the 32-bit era is that you could have REAL audio (due to the CD) and not have a soundchip that GENERATES the music in real time…

    Believe it or not though, and this should just make you respect it more, the muic in Chrono Cross is in fact NOT cd audio. It’s actually a traked style format similar to what the C64, Amiga, or SNES. Tracked music is ALMOST like MIDI but where everyone hears the exact same thing*. This explains why you can downlod a rip of the soundtrack in PSF format and only have it be like 15mb. If it was CD audio then it would be anywhere up to like ~650mb per CD.

    MOST PS1 games were like this and as far as I know ALL RPGs, my nature. Why? Well, if the CDRom is already in use/busy then you can’t ALSO be somehow streaming data at the same time, which is something that an RPG needs to do. The games that have ACTUAL CD audio (called Redbook Audio) are ones where they are able to load the entire scene/level into memory all at once so further loading doesn’t have to happen. This is also why you can pause these games, swap out the CD with one you love, and then continue while now listening to your favorite music.**

    So, I hope that clears things up a bit. The reason I cared so much about this is that Chrono Cross’s s soundtrack is amazing, even a billion times more so when you realize THAT IT’S BEING PROCESSED AND GENERATED IN REAL TIME AND NOT PRE-RECORDED.

    That is all, I’d like to hear your thoughts on this so reply or email me back at brent.rittenhouse+commentreply (at) gmail (dot) com. And yes, keep the plus in there. It’s a little-known feature of gmail that allows mail to get to the normal email address (without the plus) but retaining the text after the plus sign which you can use to create a filter.

    – Lanlost
    (Brent R.)

    * How this works is, single snippit samples are made of each instrument used in the song and then sequenced by time and pitch with the SPU (sound processing unit) converting the sounds pitch.

    ** This is also a good way to determine if the game is using CD audio or not. You could also, of course, put the GAMES CD in a walkmen/PC or something to determine if it has it’s soundtrack, or part of it, as CD audio as well.

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