Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious Protest at E3

June 11, 2009 -

At least two faith-based bloggers have raised objections to a fake religious protest staged by Electronic Arts to promote its Dante's Inferno game at E3 last week in Los Angeles.

At GamePolitics reported, about 20 actors carried signs protesting Dante's Inferno on supposed religious grounds. The signs bore messages like "EA = anti-Christ" and "My high score is in Heaven." Initial coverage by the Los Angeles Times even reported (incorrectly) that the demonstrators came from a church in Ventura County, California.

Margaret Cabaniss of InsideCatholic has taken issue with the religious theme of EA's publicity stunt:

It's been clear for a while now that the entertainment industry views Christians on the whole as priggish, thin-skinned fun-killers... Has anybody at EA actually read the Inferno?

Meanwhile, Catholic Video Gamers writes:

Gamers of all varieties will buy this product if it's, well, actually a good game. So instead of engaging in a shamelessly anti-Christian stunt to promote your poor excuse of a product, maybe you ought to work on making this game, you know, something better than a blatant God of War rip-off and make it, ya know, something worthwhile?

GP: Aside from these blog posts there are no official complaints from religious organizations on the Dante's affair... yet.


Comments

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Show of hands who here wasn't anticipating backlash for this stunt?

----------------------------------------------------

Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I think EA really needs to look into its advertising department. First they send illegal brass knuckles to various members of the press, and now they stage the poorly thought-out faux protest. Somebody needs to be fired. Maybe next time they'll find an excuse to make a fake terrorist threat or something incredibly stupid like that.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

It's sad when EA's fake religious protest does say something about them that is true. For video games, they are the anti christ, or at least a harbringer of frusteration at crappy products that crash, boredom at repetitive gameplay, and that numb tingling feeling you get in your skull when you try to play one of their 'strategy' games.

 


Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I think really what it boils down to is: E.A. staged a fake protest that they knew (or should have known) would create a backlash against the Christian community.

It was irresponsible, at best.

Edit: To put things into perspective for the few who don't see a problem with this, what if they'd staged... say, an anti-heterosexual rally, trying to make homosexuals look like nutjobs and extremists?

Painting a target on another group for publicity is reprehensible.

I mean, really, the "kick me" signs got old in the fifth grade.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I agree with these guys. Exploiting a religion like this shouldn't happen, and it made EA even worse in my eyes.

That being said, this is America, so they're entitled to do this.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

 The church these protesters represent is The Church of Greed, located in Redwood City, CA.  The minister is John Riccitiello.  The tennents of the church are to make money by whatever means necessary.  Their hymns are all sung in Simlish, therefore no translation is available at the moment.

 

PMBD http://paysites.mustbedestroyed.org/ The truth about T$R http://tsr.mustbedestroyed.org/ EA + T$R = We're all screwed

PMBD http://paysites.mustbedestroyed.org/ The truth about T$R http://tsr.mustbedestroyed.org/ EA + T$R = We're all screwed

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I bet there were some fundamentalists that were also pissed, some that actually joined the fake protest and thought they were among others of their kind. "What? You mean this protest was a stunt? You mean the money I won at this charity casino wasn't real?"

GameSnooper

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

EA is pissing off Christians? Well, I guess that makes up for the retardedness of the stunt. All is forgiven.

--------------------------------------------------------

Believe in something! Even if it's wrong, believe in it! -Glenn Beck

-------------------------------------------------------- Believe in something! Even if it's wrong, believe in it! GET OFF MY PHONE! -Glenn Beck

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Ah yes. You have discovered our plan. Here at Evangelical-bashing Atheist games (or EA, for short), we've discovered we can do whatever the f*** we want, because as long as we piss off somebody, we ensure that that person's enemies will love us, no matter what we do.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Maybe if christians would cut the dumbass protests in real life then it wouldn't be such a stereotype. It's their fault, not EA's.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

So you say that fundamental, Constitutionally protected rights should be kept from a group of people based on their religious belief?  So, are you a Communist, Nazi or just a plain old idiot?

 

Freedom of speech means the freedom to say ANYTHING, so long as it is the truth. This does not exclude anything that might hurt someone's feelings.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Are you fucking kidding me? Good job grouping all Christians together. You are suggesting that the extremist conservative Christians run all their protest ideas by moderate bloggers and every single other Christian organization in the entire world to make sure that every Christian is 100% behind everything that they do.

I applaud you for being an ignorant bigot.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

That's like saying the blame in a rape is on the victim because 'she was asking for it'.

--------------------------------------------------

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Or saying that all muslins are the fault that some of them suicide bomb.

 

criadordejogos.wordpress.com

--- Maurício Gomes twitter.com/agfgames

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

And that´s one reason I stopped to believe in God: stupid christians abusing of his name whinning about stupid stuff like a damn game.

And they keep wondering why religions are vanishing from society.

The cynical side of videogames (spanish only): http://thelostlevel.blogspot.com/ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com/

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Thanks for your very well-thought out com...o wait, you didn't bother reading this article, or the previous one describing how the protest was fake. Good job man.

The responses from these two bloggers were logical and quite reasonable. You're the one who looks like an idiot now.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Except that the protest was fake. You don't even have to deign to read the article or the summary to see that. It's in the damned headline. "Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious Protest at E3"

And that's one reason I stopped believing in the overall intelligence of mankind online: stupid commenters whining about stupid stuff like a fake protest as if it were real when it was designed to play off the very prejudices those commenters display.

And they keep wondering why a reasonable standard of discourse is vanishing from the internet.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

the statement from the catholic video gamers is halarious in this context. And even though I'm not christian, I have to agree that the protest was tasteless. But contraversy is what EA wants, so I think ignoring it and not buying the game would be a better protest than doing something about it because its only going to promote the game more than it probably deserves.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

EA's securom controversy served them real well.

Another few slaps on the nose like what they're about to get and we'll have one less jerk company to worry about.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Last I checked the Catholic church was a bit offended by Dante's writings back in the day. Funny how things change.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

In this case, I think the bloggers are right.

Just imagine the s**tstorm that would have occurred if a company made a fake Muslim protest.


If you go crazy then I will still call you Superman.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

This.

 

Freedom of speech means the freedom to say ANYTHING, so long as it is the truth. This does not exclude anything that might hurt someone's feelings.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

It feels like everyone's got a stick up their ass and is taking it like a poor sport. The protest garnned a rediculous amount of attention and when everyone realized they were tricked, everyone started going like "THAT WAS STUPID!" or "THAT DIDN'T WORK!". I feel like everyone is taking a shot at this because it is EA, and it's proven during the Anti-spore website thing where someone pretended to be like a crazy christian and instead rick-rolled everyone. And I also dislike everyone saying "It's not exact to the Divine Comedy!", well so is painting a mustache on the Mona Lisa.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

When I first read about the protest, I thought it was a moronic thing to protest about. It wsa blatant idiocy. The Manchester Cathedral thing I could sympathize with, but Dante's Inferno no.

To claim that the divine comedy is scriptural canon would be like saying that C S Lewis's Screwtape Letters is canon. Sure they are insirational in their story and thoughts, but they are fictional representations of spiritual things.

Then when I found out, or rather realized, that it was a PR stunt by EA, I again thought it was a moronic thing to do. Sure any publicity is good publicity, but it really needs to be sincere. The outrage provoked by the likes of GTA and Manhunt are sincere and thus lead to increased sales. Something like this will only lead to contempt from the consumer as they are made to look the fool.

I can also sypathize with the bloggers that have expressed their objection to the stereotyping of Christians. Yes there are some moronic Christians out there that will protest every little thing. Those types of Christians have been portrayed as the stereotype in a lot of films. It is really annoying ot see it used in advertising as well.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Actually, unlike the Screwtape letters, Dante's Inferno did is often considered canon, as that's where the idea of purgatory and imagery of heaven and hell found in Catholicisim originated.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Really? I figured Christians would be outraged over this because they didn't think of it first.

---You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

---You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

"It's been clear for a while now that the entertainment industry views Christians on the whole as priggish, thin-skinned fun-killers..."

Only because they are.  ;)

I kid, I kid.  In all seriousness, I'm actually on their side on this one and think EA's stunt was a dick move in several respects.  But still, this stereotype didn't just appear out of thin air.  There are a lot of people who raise a stink about games, get in our faces, *and* make it a point to bring up that they are Christian and trying to uphold their Christian values or whatever.  Now, I'm sure plenty of the people who argue for free speech are Christian too, statistically a whole lot of them must be.  But they don't drag their religion into the discussion when they do it, so we are left with only having the negative associations with Christianity reinforced.

It's completely unfair, and we gamers suffer a very similar problem.  Any time there is a school shooting, you can be sure the video game angle will be brought up.  But when's the last time there was a news story about, say, some kid becoming an Eagle Scout, or doing volunteer work, or saving somebody's life, or whatever, where it was mentioned that they play games?  (this is the only one I can think of)  Statistically speaking, plenty of them must play games, but it is just never brought up unless the story involves violence.

God, I hate the media sometimes... :/

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

The people who bring up the school shooting/videogame link are the ultra-conservatives....guess who's imaginary leg they hump.

I love how they call us immoral SOB's day in, day out....and when we finally get around to making fun of then, they BAWWWWWWWWWWWWWW.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Sorry, but both liberals and conservatives are perfectly willing to blame society's ills on videogames for a bit of political capital.  They know that videogames are a soft target that few take seriously and few are willing to defend.  Scaremongering and censorship are values that both sides of the aisle can agree on, unfortunately.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

....but they are thin-skinned fun-killers

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I never thought I'd agree with a Christian-based blogger, but that EA stunt was in poor taste.  Their fake protest garnered the same backlash, outrage, and mockery that is normally doled (sp?) out when religious nutjobs really do something ridiculous.  Also, it's in just plain stupid for any company selling a product to even TOUCH on religion or race.  Those are sensitve topics and not condusive to PR stunts to sell games.  What were they thinking?

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

They were thinking... let's beat them to the punch.  And it worked.

To be honest, I was taken in at first.  Felt some face palm action - like I do when people are "outraged".  But I have a sense of humour about myself and when I found out that it was a PR stunt I laughed because it made me challenge my own view of christians and videogames.  I'm sure some people are angry because they were taken in by a PR stunt, but that's why I liked it.

I don't believe religion or race to be "sacred" and not to be touched when done properly when it's done properly.  This was pushing the line a bit, but so does Colbert when he talks about when he's "colour blind" or when he pretends to support creationism.

------- Morality has always been in decline. As you get older, you notice it. When you were younger, you enjoyed it.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Funny story, Stephen Colbert is a Catholic.  'Thin skinned' my ass. 

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

mikedo2007

I like the Protest staged by EA game.  Serves them religious fanatics for bashing on video game and calling them the "work of the devil" without looking at them with extreme prejudice.  I wish Rockstar, and other game company pull off Faux protests so we can teach those religious fanatics a lesson, don't bash our video game.

I'll tell you what's really the "work of the devil":

-Communism

-Nazism

-religion extremism (No real religion will ever tells you to committ violence for no or ridiculous reason)

 

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

 So it's wrong when religious extremists do it, but it's okay when EA does it?

I think the religious guys have the right of it. They have enough problem not being shamed by other radical "Christians", they don't need EA to pitch in and add more fuel to the fire.

 

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

"So it's wrong when religious extremists do it, but it's okay when EA does it?"

I'm not saying EA was right or wrong, but this is a faulty statement.  They didn't do the same thing; EA isn't being criticized for protesting the game on religious grounds, it's being criticized for defaming Christian zealots for marketing purposes.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

First off, you aren't going to teach religious fanatics a lesson by staging fake protests. That's not how it works. Primarily because the fanatics do not care and will not listen to you. In fact it will just give them cause to be more upset because now you are treating them fools and mocking their faith for monetary gain. This not only attracts the ire of radicals but moderate Christians like myself because it is no longer about games regarding interpretations of the Christian afterlife but thinking that Christians are fools in general.

I am bothered by many comments about Christians and believers of faith in general on this site. Not because of your cocerns about the radicals (I don't trust televangelists any further than I can throw them myself), but that you have issues with anyone that seems to adhere to Christianity is somewhat closeminded. Why is it "our video game" that needs to be free of criticism? Remember, most of the bashing towards games comes not from Christians directly, or at least people who identify themselves primarily as Christians, but concerned parents, watchdog organizations or the media in hopes of sensationalism for ratings/politicians for votes.

My church holds Halo tourneys for the youth group, however, they do not allow Gears of War. Why? Because Halo is action packed fun, whereas much of the GoW aesthetic is based soley on the grit, violence and gore. The language used in the game is also another factor. They as an institution cannnot allow children as young as 14 to be exposed to the violence of GoW because it clearly is much more impressive in its display of gore. This is a reasonable and responsible approach to gaming for teens.

Having read the Comedia, I have no idea how they are going to make a game that works. All Dante did was walk around, talk to souls of the damned, repentent and saved with three different guides. It was about analyzing the nature of sin and human nature all packaged in the terza rima scale. I don't see why most Christians would even be upset because so few have indeed read it. It's not like they are making an Old Testament videogame where you can go around causing disasters, death and destruction on Biblical proportions or a game where you play Lucifer trying to defeat Christ. I think most criticism of the game is going to come from the gaming community with comments about the game being a hack and slash rip off with a new theme slapped on and how much it ultimately sucks. I mean no one was discussing this game before or after the fake protests. Only Christians or EA are being talked about.

-Host of Guns, Gaming and Government Radio Show -"My Kind of Trinity"

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

 

http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread463366/pg1

I remember a story about a kid who go to a christian (extremists) school, he wanted to go to a prom held by a high school with a girl he met from that other school.  that extremist school he goes to threaten him saying if he goes to a prom at another school, hw would not graduate from his (extremist) school. This is an example why I hate extremism, they can use blackmail or intimidation.

I did forget about the church that hold Halo tournament, my bad.  But the problem these day is that somebody using religion as a weapon and using them to manipulate people.  You're also right about people complaining about video game coming not only from christians group, but also from watchdog and media who needs a huge boost for ratings (like Fox News), and also game haters like Jack Thompson.  I think that religion thing is a cover up, I think it's more like they hate video game just as much those anime haters (I'm a fan of anime/manga) on Youtube moan and bitch about anime.     

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I know the story you're talking about with the kid and the prom, I think. But think of it this way - that was part of the Code of Conduct that the kid signed when he entered the school. Legally speaking, he agreed that he would not attend the prom of another high school, and that if he did, he understood he'd be expelled.

No blackmail involved. He signed on the deal and broke it.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Many interpretations of "real" religions condone violence.  The Bible technically mandates that homosexuals be put to death. And let's not forget all those virgins God promises to anyone who kills infidels.

BTW, what happens to female suicide bombers in heaven? Do they get their own harem of well-hung studs?

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

You'd have to take that up with practitioners of Judaism, though. For Christians, the New Testament overturns the old punishments.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

mikedo2007

Well that may be true. I will agree that the bible did have violence in there. But didn't the bible have a quote "Thou shall not kill" somewhere in there.  I heard there were many versions of Bible regarding homosexuals, one saids homosexual must be put to death and another one said don't kill homosexual.

 

For Islam, the Koran (the real one) said using violence is forbidden.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

During the time that Israel was considered a theocracy (that is, ruled directly by God through his prophet - take that as you will), they made religious law into practical law, and carried out God's justice themselves. Their law was to punish homosexuals. (though I am NOT saying that modern-day Israel or Jews are the same today)

The message Christians have been left with is to let God take care of it himself now. It's not our job to execute what his judgement will be, just to warn in love and teach those who will listen. We're also not supposed to hate someone, even if they are involved in a sin. This doesn't mean to be tolerant of the action itself, but means that we shouldn't harass the person or try and force them to stop. Of course hateful violence should never happen... but people get caught up in the "ZOMG SINNER" and forget everything else.

As for the Koran, it encourages husbands to beat their disobedient wives. Violence may be technically "forbidden," but there are workarounds.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Not to mention that the Koran explicitely states that women are property, not people.  As such, they wouldn't even be granted entrance to the kingdom of heaven.

 

Freedom of speech means the freedom to say ANYTHING, so long as it is the truth. This does not exclude anything that might hurt someone's feelings.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

"Thou shalt not murder" is supposedly the more accurate translation.  Killing's cool, but you can only do it under the right circumstances.

 

 -P, not a bible monkey.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

And therein lies one of the fundamental flaws of organized religion- rampant contradictions and mixed messages. It's a wonder so many people want religious text to be the basis for all historical and scientific "fact" (6000 year old universe, global flood, etc) when these same texts contradict themselves constantly when it comes to moral commands.

Here is a good resource to check:

http://www.skepticsannotatedbible.com/

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

Saying that communism is work of evil is asking to communists say that captalism is work of evil.

Usually this is what results in... Cold War?

 

criadordejogos.wordpress.com

--- Maurício Gomes twitter.com/agfgames

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

But Communism is evil.  It gives absolutely no reason for people to not be lazy.  Seriously, what reason would anyone have to contribute, if all they needed was provided for them?  In Communist nations, they put people in prison or worse if they don't, but that doesn't give anyone choice.  Now you're messing with free will.

I just wish that Dem's actually understood this, before planning on making us USSR redux.

 

Freedom of speech means the freedom to say ANYTHING, so long as it is the truth. This does not exclude anything that might hurt someone's feelings.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

I think one thing that these bloggers should do is take a good hard look inward and consider why so many people found the protest so plausible.  Yeah, it was insensitive of EA, but it was effective because it was so close to the protests we do see.

It was also a good parody of people who spout scripture without understanding, something we see a LOT of.  A surprising number of Christians know little about the history of hell and do, indirectly, take Inferno as cannon.

Re: Faith-Based Bloggers Slam EA For Staging Fake Religious ...

You say this, but I bet you don't have the balls to say that a political cartoon of Mohammed is fair game to a Muslim.

You're comment is based on a political double-standard, that Christians are okay to attack due to the overwhelming majority of Christians in this country and around the world, but any other religion or non-religion cannot be spoken of in any sort of negative manner.  It is this double-standard that makes the EA protest so offensive to Christians.

 

Freedom of speech means the freedom to say ANYTHING, so long as it is the truth. This does not exclude anything that might hurt someone's feelings.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.
 
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