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by Dan MartinJanuary 29, 2015

2014 was set to be one of the greatest years for games.

Bungie – the brains behind the Halo series, was expecting to create a new IP call Destiny which combined the best of first person shooting and MMOs which many of us thought would be the best game of the generation. Assassins Creed: Unity was to refresh one of the most popular franchises of the last decade, while Watch Dogs was set to transform the gaming landscape. These games were highly anticipated and looked fantastic.

How wrong we were.

What we actually got was one of the sloppiest selections of games this generation has ever seen. Watch Dogs was nothing like the spectacular presentation at its unveiling back in E3. Destiny was criticized for its lack of story content and Assassins Creed: Unity launched the game with countless unfixed bugs.
Now there are plenty of sites out there that hammer the hazards of pre-ordering games, and this is something that everyone here at ESportsSource really feels strongly about.

Let us explain…

Pre-ordering games online used to serve a purpose. It used to be the case that there simply weren’t enough physical copies of a game, due to demand or because of its niche title. It would take days, if not weeks, to finally get your game so pre-ordering games was the answer that filled that void.
Now that purpose has almost disappeared. So why are we still expected to pre-order? One of the biggest reasons is because publishers employ marketing and advertising schemes to make it seem necessary. Gamers are offered pre-order bonuses with exclusive content, adding more hours to the game but only for those who pay more. If we had not pre-ordered games like Destiny, Watch Dogs or Unity, these companies would likely be unable to develop new games, but with the money already in hand before the game is even released means the bugs just get fixed later on with patches.

This begs the question…

Why don’t they test their games before launch?

There are a couple of reasons for this…

• Budget – Making games costs more and more everyday. Developers are now expected to include more and more content, especially if it’s popular. In turn, this raises the development costs. Companies will employ several different editions and include the introduction of high paying actors and additional content to remedy the situation.  They also look to cut costs in some sectors and an increasingly popular way of doing this is to exclude game testers, who are no longer really needed due to the army of gamers who are willing to pay full price for what is essentially an open alpha/beta test.

• Withholding reviews – Gaming companies now have a tendency to withhold all reviews until launch day. By the time reviews are out, the opinions won’t matter because the companies have already sold the games and made a profit!

So, as gamers, what can we do about it?

Simply, it’s probably a good idea to wait and see if the game actually works before buying it!

Our advice is this: Be patient, read the reviews and do your research. Above all, be smart. Don’t spend your money on broken games by pre-ordering.

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Dan Martin

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