The Grumpy Troll

Ramblings of a grumpy troll.

The value of paying?

My wife was pleasantly surprised to get an iPad as a birthday present. She knew my opinion of it, so knew that this was a tech toy for her, not a "look what I got me^Wyou" gift.

On the surface, very capable. When I set up IMAP access to our mailserver, I found out how shallow that is, but that's another story of poor feedback and buggy diagnostics.

This evening, Mrs Troll decided to install some games. She's a fan of Tetris, and since I had the iPad when this was mentioned (*cough* it is shiny) I went looking. There's the official Tetris® game! Excellent, the company which properly licenses the game from the Russian developer, paid dues, promoted the game and invested money in its spread. Okay, let's buy from them instead of a knock-off clone. Hrm, $7.99 for the iPad version instead of, I think, $4.99 for the iPhone version. Okay, a little steep, we're being gouged a little for playing on the new hotness. I suck it up and pay anyway. After all, with all those cheap $0.99 games around, this game from EA, an established house, should be somewhat better.

I keep my grubby mitts on the iPad a few moments longer to try playing. Marathon; Level 1; Tutorial. crash. Uh, say what? Try again ⋯ Marathon, Level 1, Tutorial ⋯ crash.

*sigh* I played this game back on the Amiga, I believe. Back before patches and updates could be delivered over the Internet, so the game would actually be stable before being shipped. A little QA, such as getting through the tutorial on the first level for the basic game mode, or perhaps even being able to start the tutorial.

Mrs Troll is playing away on it now; apparently, there are some levels where it doesn't immediately crash.

-The Grumpy Troll, reaching for the pipe and slippers


Phil P
Firedrake, it depends entirely upon the amount of real choice that the exploited people have.

People in sweat-shops who will starve if they leave the job have little choice.

People with enough education to be able to work in a white-collar job and enough computer skills to work in game design have other options. If they choose to continue to chase a dream and accept exploitation as a price they'll pay, then that's their choice. They have other options which not only won't lead to them starving but will pay better.

Unfortunately there will always be people who'll seek to exploit the hopes and dreams of others. I don't know, personally, whether the aforementioned company is one of those, although I have read some of the stories. All that can, or perhaps should, be done is to make the information available to help people make informed choices. If enough of the talent pool avoids such companies, they'll reform or go under. Part of the role of government and society should be to ensure that the information is available and can't be suppressed, to permit adults to make informed choices.
"this game from EA" - ah, so you're happy to support exploitative working practices as long as it's only Americans being exploited? (Yes, I am poking fun at ethical consumerism. You can't win, just minimise harm.)

(And the only games I play these days are BSD atc and Orbiter, so I'm well off out of this.)

-- random Firedrake
Categories: iStore games tetris iPad paid apps EA Apple