I Stand On My Soapbox is a series of editorials that cover more specific topics in the games industry and community. These articles are a little more extreme than normal editorials published here, and could just degenerate to outright ranting. Have fun and enjoy the show!
Ever since this generation started, seeing games costing $60 was a tough pill to swallow. I’ve never seen prices this high since the days of the N64. In those days though, the Playstation was still around and new games were only $40. PS2/Xbox/Gamecube games evened out with $50. It was a sort of pricing sweet spot that had some opposition but was pretty much uncontested. PS2 games were $10 dollars more than PS1 games, but Gamecube games were $10 cheaper than N64 games. Xbox would begin its life with games at $50. So in comes the PS3/360/Wii era, and we see the Wii in the same position the PS1 was with its games being $50 while the other two consoles charging $60. While both of these pricepoints were still high, I much preferred paying just $50 instead of $60. But now that the Wii U is out, and all the players in this game are now charging $60.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve had it with this price point and it’s sad that we as gamers (I included) let this happen.
Amidst the absolute mess SEGA’s in right now comes word that SEGA is closing down some of its offices in Europe and Australia. The casualties in Europe are Germany, France, Spain, and Benelux. Australia is getting the axe completely. Jurgen Posts states that this is all part of SEGA’s business realignment strategy. All is not lost though, as Koch Media and 5 Star will be taking care of the territories affect by this strategy. Post does say something that makes me nervious for SEGA’s (and the industry as a whole) future. “The big IPs are becoming bigger, whether that’s FIFA, Call Of Duty or Assassin’s Creed, those titles are just becoming bigger and bigger and it’s harder and harder to break into the market with new IP.” This concerns me greatly since SEGA postponed Anarchy Reigns to 2013. Along with this, SEGA’s probably not going to do much exploration with themes, settings, and ideas.
At this point, I don’t know what to say about SEGA anymore. They have a plan, and unfortunately it looks like it might work… for them at least. It’s a shame we probably won’t get more out-there games like Space Channel 5 and ChuChu Rocket. But this problem stems from a deeper problem plaguing the industry, and I’ll get to that in the very near future.
Woah-ho-hooo! Now that’s one major delay if I ever saw one. If you remember a while back, SEGA delayed the Anarchy Reigns from early Summer until it could find a better date to release it. Since Japan’s going to get it as scheduled (which is still this Summer), you’d think it’d be around late Summer at least. In the initial report, SEGA didn’t specify what the new release date would be. But now they have a general date: Early 2013! Does SEGA really need to push it that far for a successful launch? Remember, SEGA delayed the game initially because it wanted to find a better time to release it — i.e. no major competition would be around. But 2013!? And the game is fully done too.
Well, at least they could use this surplus of extra time to work out any kinks and netcode issues they find in the JP release. But man, if this was any other game, I wouldn’t bat an eye. But with SEGA’s financial trouble, it sounds like something bigger’s happening in the House of Hedgehog.
Things just keep getting weirder and weirder as SEGA has announced that Anarchy Reigns is being delayed in the U.S. and Europe. Thing is, the game is done. A rep from Platinum states that the game “…is fully localized. If you buy the Japanese version or any version, it’s going to have all the languages in it.” So what’s the hold up? Well, it’s timing as SEGA wants to release the game at a better time where it’ll be more likely to be bought and played. Since this is a online centric game, the timing is important. But why delay it out of summer, where the target range is most likely on break from college or work? I’d say now’s the best time to do it, especially since summer is pretty much the “game release drought” season. SEGA could have Summer all to itself. Hopefully this business realignment isn’t toying around with their strategic metality, ’cause it’s looking all sorts of funky.
The Japanese launch of Anarchy Reigns (Max Anarchy in Japan) is close by, so here’s a launch trailer for it. I have a feeling this trailer is going to be the same when the game is released here, considering SEGA hasn’t done much in advertising the game. I mean sure they’ve got character trailers in English (lots of ’em), but they haven’t done much pushing to other outlets to show these trailers. Anarchy Reigns is a beat ’em up that looks poised to be a very, very distant spiritual successor to Power Stone (and of course the sequel to MadWorld). You got special moves, environmental hazards and items, etc. The game’s main focus is online with many modes to be had. There’s Tag Team DeathMatch, Cage Match, Capture The Flag, Survival, Death Ball, and more. But I can definitely see a lot of people frequenting Battle Royale, a 16-player Deathmatch mode that’s bound to be chaotic. Bayonetta is also included in the game.
But for those that prefer to play alone, the game’s also got a story mode, but not much is known about what the plot will be about, nor if it’ll only follow just Jack Cayman or follow everyone. There’s still no word on local multiplayer (considering the previous game, MadWorld, had it on the Wii). Anarchy Reigns is slated for release in the U.S. on July 3rd, with Austalia and Europe getting the game July 5th and 6th respectively.