I agree with some of the sentiment about demos, but I wonder why RPS decided to make a case against Matrix/Slitherine. It's not like any major distributor does demos any more. The last demo from a major dist. I remember playing was for the first Crysis, way back in like '08 or something.
I do miss demos. I also miss non-DRM gaming, single player focused campaigns, and RPGs that actually put thought into their stories. Demos would be only the 297th thing I've become cynical about in the gaming industry... and certainly, taking specific issue with Matrix seems a little petulant and heavy handed. But coming from the RPS beta males, should we expect anything else?
Tim Stone primarily writes about sims and wargames at RPS, and since as Matrix/Slitherine (edit: and others, I would assume) insist wargames are a niche market, he approached the issue on those terms by limiting the discussion to some of the other well-known names in niche strategy and wargaming. The question of demos is also a frequent one with Matrix/Slitherine. Tim did interviews with the other developers to get their thoughts, then compared them to public comments from Matrix/Slitherine.
To me it just seems like decent journalism, though of course I can see where you're coming from with your feeling that Matrix/Slitherine is being singled out -- the opinions of the other developers have certainly done that.
I buy games from Matrix/Slitherine and enjoy them, mostly, but I've been careful about what I buy. There are plenty of games though that I won't buy without playing a demo because of the price point. So, there's more money that they could mine from me if demos were available for specific games here.
I'm guessing if it really is a prohibitive cost to produce a demo, Matrix/Slitherine games are just that different in the code somehow. I suppose I can only give them the benefit of the doubt. I work in software and have my own understanding of it, but I don't work for Matrix/Slitherine, so I can't know.
I assume "beta males" is an insult directed at the RPS writers? Or is it the community at large? Maybe just Tim Stone? Was there something specific about the article that prompted that? What do you mean by a "beta male"?
I also didn't really pick up on a petulant tone, but again, opinions differ.
RPS does material I sometimes agree with, but their contradictions and moral grandstanding is more than I can bare most of the time. The recent pieces they've done on sexism in the gaming industry has really smacked of hypocrisy. Not only do they condone and promote the same kind of 'meathead' boy toy gaming, they also don't have a lot of leverage when it comes to proselytizing about social issues.
They preview, review, and enjoy the hell out of wargames and shooters, then turn around and try to brow beat gamers into thinking they're homicidal misogynists for playing Call of Duty or Mortal Kombat. Their writers are constantly taking politically correct stances on issues... I guess solely for the purpose of being with the PC 'in crowd.' So I suppose boobs and bullets are ok, so long as you're an academic blogger or game reviewer, but if you just enjoy those type of games for the adrenaline rush as a regular ole' gamer, you must be some sort of sexist dinosaur from a bygone age in need of social re-education.
If you want more specifics, I'll grab some links for ya and we can dig deeper into it.
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