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January 29, 2006



About the gamefly thing...

How many games have you reported lost before? I've reported 3 that disappeared after I sent them back and they havent charged me yet. I am really starting to disklike how long their turnaround time is though..Seems like it always takes me at least a week for them to recieve and send out the next game, and I always make sure my top games dont have waits.

I think it's wierd though that I've never had a netflix dvd disappear in shipping, and I've had hundreds of movies shipped to me.

Jamie Fristrom

I'm the other way around - NetFlix has gone lost in the mail (for which they never charged me, bless them). Everytime I've lost a GameFly game it was my bad. And I've always been honest about it, too, paying the fine instead of saying it got lost in the mail...which is part of why I'm annoyed by the $30. This is what I get for being honest?


I think the iPod example is a temporary example though. Arguably with the right tech your cell phone could play MP3s just fine and give you access to millions of songs online or 10-20 gigs of songs through a memory card. That would arguably be better than just an iPod. That reality does not exist today, at least in the USA but it's coming. Swiss Army knife eventually will win that one as well.


I'm sure someone has written a 'rule' or 'law' about how long a Focused Product can hold out against a Swiss Army Knife Product given technological improvements and such. But I'd think that it's not even a matter of necessarily reaching the ability to usurp the complete functionality of the iPod, but like Greggman suggested, getting to the point where it's "good enough." Wal-Mart isn't known for quality, but their prices make their good enough for most. So the trick is obviously finding something with mass appeal that's different to the point that it can't be immediately mimicked in a 'good enough' fashion by others. In my mind while many have done fine jobs, no one else has done a good enough job of mimicking GTA to steal their crown.

>>And I can hold a grudge for a really long time.

Dude, that's beyond holding a grudge. That's reaching "mission in life" territory, y'know, like you've "made it your mission in life" to not use Creative? Though on an odd scale, it is almost impressive.

Liam Hislop

I like some "swiss army knife" games as well as focused games. It doesn't really matter which one you do as long as the quality is there. Guitar Hero worked because it is focused and solid. If it wasn't, it would be in the toilet. Larger games like GTA is pretty solid in the things it does as well. Maybe not as solid as a focused game, but if you don't like that part, you can play a different part. You can play GTA just driving around for hours. The main problem with the larger games is when they don't focus on what the core is and make that solid. If the driving wasn't fun in GTA, say if it were glitchy or bad, it would affect most of the other systems in the game. So they make that solid and build on the rest of it. So, personally, even with a "Swiss army knife" game, you've got to have one or maybe two major systems in place that everything else can build around.
The example of Wal-mart was given. It has the same thing. It is built around low prices. Now that doesn't necessarily equate to quality, but they have one core thing in place and the other elements build around it.
iPod is a focuse product compared to the PSP, but it is doing things really, really well. If the PSP could do music as well or better than iPod/iTunes, or if it was cheaper, then people would probably switch.
It's all about doing at least one thing well and then either continue to do that better than anyone else, or build on top of that.

Of course, that's just my opinion :)

Michael hasan

A recent counter argument to the swiss army knife debate is Black&White 2, which was planned as a synthesis of strategy game (Age Of Empires, Starcraft, Civilization), city building game (Cesar 3, Pharaoh) and pet game (Nintendogs, Sims). It is doing all of those things, but each single one not as well as any of these more specialized games, and is therefore just a mediocre game.


Sorry, but allow me to completely sidetrack this for a moment.

Liam Hislop?! Talk about folks you never thing you'll hear/see again. Hey man, I went to FS, you still down there doing your thing?


I'd have to agree with Jeffool on the grudge against Creative: while immensely impressive, I would suspect that the cretin(s) at Creative that failed to make the drivers backwards compatible has probably long since moved on, and may even now be working at a company from which you are happy to buy from.

Gregory John

Dude, get the iPod Video. No one else seems to have the tech to make a 30 GB MP3 player that small and look that good. Just my $0.02.

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

  • Spider-Man 2
    The best superhero games of all time Game Informer
    Top five games of all time Yahtzee Croshaw
    Top five superhero games of all time MSNBC
    Top 100 PS2 games of all time Official Playstation 2 Magazine
    1001 Games You Must Play Before You Die Nomination for Excellence in Gameplay Engineering Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences
  • Schizoid
    Penny Arcade PAX 10 Award
    Nominated for XBLA Best Original Game
    Nominated for XBLA Best Co-Op Game