Rundown (11/18-11/24) Natalie’s Adventures with Streaming

Two weeks ago, prior to having a bit of a meltdown over the sheer amount of things I need to do, I played through the first stretch of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey using Google’s Project Stream service.  While I personally found the game to be the same sort of highly detailed yet ultimately unmemorable open world fluff that has come to define so much of AAA gaming, and positively groaned as I briefly sifted through the microtransaction riddled storefront, I did find the performance of the game over my 50 mbps internet to be quite impressive.  While I could tell that there was some degree of latency with my actions, the quality of the service did convince me that streaming is a viable option for gaming in the future, as, well, it worked.

While I do not see it being the “future of gaming” per se, it is a convenient concept that is particularly useful for PC gaming, as it avoid compatibility issues, allows games to be played on high settings on less powerful hardware, and does not eat up HDD space like so many modern games wanton do.  For consoles, I actually see the idea as being less viable, unless people are too impatient to wait for downloads. While I would classify my experience as an ultimately positive one, I still have concerns over game streaming, such as titles that are only available via streaming, how people will pay to be able to stream games, and how things like data caps, low speeds, or just plain old unreliable internet will impact this.  Oh, and streaming too. I mean, how much bandwidth does one need to stream a game to their system while live streaming the game? That is an important question… at least I think so.

What I’m getting at is that I am more or less over my worries about streaming being viable, though I am too attached to the idea of owning products to partake in such services with regularity.  Partially because I do worry about paying for services in general, as I see the rise in services as being a potentially detrimental force that society will need to contend with as the century continues.  For many firms, the idea of recurring revenue models is too appealing to let pass, and worry that this idea will become so universal that many major companies will begin shifting away from providing any form of goods in lieu of services.  

This shift would result in the average person owning very little, being weighed down by debts that must be paid periodically, and being forced to seek stable employment in a world where companies are constantly looking to lower headcount and making their existing workers work harder for less money, simply so they may retain a job and the ability to live a comfortable, if fragile, existence.  All while senior management gets paid bonuses of several million dollars… I probably shouldn’t have looped that Capitalism Vs. Gaming puppet show video five times while playing Pokemon Let’s Go Eevee

Speaking of Pokemon Let’s Go, way back when it was first revealed, I was positively peeved about hearing that the game was mandating motion controls, only to then check the official site, where I misread an admittedly poorly worded statement to mean that the Joy-Con controls were optional.  This misunderstanding led me to spread misinformation and scrap a paragraph long tirade about how the game was less accessible because of the motion controls.  I bring this up because in the wake of the game’s release an article popped up about how these motion controls are making the game really difficult for people with disabilities.

What’s really baffling about this situation is how the game does support functionality for catching Pokemon without motion controls, through the use of the left control stick and the A button, but that scheme is only available in handheld mode for basically no reason.  I could go into more detail, but that’s what my upcoming review of Let’s Go Eevee is for.  Also, the review will probably be super long.  Mostly because it is a mechanically rich game, and mechanics in a game have a high correlation a review’s word count.

Beyond that anecdote and tidbit about a recent release, I lack much of anything to talk about, as this is a holiday week in the United States, and few companies tend to post major or significant news around holidays.  Simply because people are typically less likely to notice them, due to how they are either engaging in vacationing or with various forms of familial obligations. So instead I will comment that I hope to have my Let’s Go Eevee review out soon.  But until then, seeya.

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