By Jeff Neuenschwander / July 22nd, 2015
As promised last week, I have Konged myself. In a state of shock, I ended up going after a website for something that may not have been their fault to begin with. Some people believed it to be a photoshop, others said that it actually happened, and I theorized that it could’ve been a glitch on the site where it took the freshest image, which may have been that image of Miyamoto. Either way, since nothing was confirmed — plus having nearly a week to clear my mind and re-focus — I really should’ve placed the blame on Internet Gremlins.
…You know… when something bad happens on the Internet but there’s no one that’s really at fault for it… it was an Internet Gremlin.
By the way, I’m not just posing for effect there. I hit my head over the weekend and am still suffering from a pretty bad headache.
Anyway, here are Last Week’s King and Kong. Take only as seriously as you wish.
While they won’t be getting King this week, XSEED Games is recognized this past week for performances of two key games in their library, Story of Seasons and Rune Factory 4. The Marvelous North American arm celebrated its fastest title to 100,000 units sold in Story of Seasons while Rune Factory 4 is applauded for 160,000 sales. Not bad, little-company-that-can.
The big cheese this week, however, is Jim Sterling after giving a sterling pitchforking to retired professional magician, and amateur games industry conman Randy Pitchford. Pitchford of course is the founder and CEO of Gearbox Software. His company, as you may remember, were the lead developers of a number of recent games that were highly hyped and bombed big time, most notably Aliens: Colonial Marines. In fairness, they also developed the critically and financially successful Borderlands franchise, but that’s not the point. The issue at hand was that Pitchford was pretty much gloating about the fact that he and his company were able to slip out of a lawsuit that included SEGA as a primary defendant. This particular quote draw quite a bit of ire.
“For every place the market succeeded, the legal system failed as it was being manipulated by what appeared to me to be essentially mafia style extortion tactics. Sadly, the manipulation would have actually worked, as it had in other cases with those same guys and to the detriment of the industry and gamers and actual, you know, justice. But those guys made a mistake in naming us as defendants because we stood up to them. That’s all it took — someone to stand up to them. And so they lost since they didn’t have a legitimate case.”
For Sterling’s part — which aired two days after his usual Monday release due to opting for an off-script talk about Satoru Iwata — he went in guns a-blazing against Pitchford; not only for not revealing the outsourcing to other studios until after the release as well as the misrepresentative footage shown everywhere before release, but for not having enough cajones to take responsibility for it. (WARNING: THIS WILL NOT BE CENSORED!)
“You’re a man who repeatedly fed us BS for months and has never, ever, apologized for it. And now you’ve got the shitting temerity to paint yourself the freedom fighter of the piece? Well, “Jim Fucking Sterling Son” didn’t forget what your company did. Many of us failed to forget what your fucking company did…
“…The thing is, I don’t give a thimble full of jizz about the class-action suit. I don’t give a family friendly fuckhole about whether or not there’s a legitimate legal case against Gearbox Software. What I want is simple: just fucking acknowledge your goddamn horse shit, guys. Stop showing off that you got away with it. Stop pretending like you’re a victim. Show some fucking accountability and responsibility for the way you acted.”
There’s quite a bit more said directly to Pitchford, which you can see here.
And for those that think SEGA deserves some criticism, Sterling had this to say.
“SEGA’s part in this is probably down to just being stupid more than being a shit — but even so, its behavior was still shit. But SEGA, at the very least, tried to do right with Alien: Isolation — made sure the game was in a playable, real state before showing it to anybody — and only recently admitted that its behavior in the past few years has been, well, a betrayal against fans.
“Now, I never trust what an executive says. But if their actions in the future actually back up what their boss said recently, then yeah, that’s a show of actual humility and accountability and something that should be encouraged.”
And before dropping the mic, he left with this little nugget for Pitchford to think about when he releases his next game: “Let’s see you pull this again in a post-Steam refund world, babe.”
Thank God for the King, I guess.
Yes, there is an additional Kong this week. And yes, it is more funny than last week’s Kong.
While they won’t be getting Konged this week — partly because I promised I would try to avoid going after other news sites — I do have to give special mention to Ben Gilbert from Business Indsider and an unnamed Nintendo representative. The rep gets mentioned because he/she didn’t accurately know some basic things for one of the biggest games in their line-up, Super Mario Maker. Gilbert gets recognition for running with a story about Nintendo being racist because it had a white hand in a game before he or BI even contacted Nintendo proper in order to confirm whether the hand color could be changed. A correction was made and the mistake was even admitted, so they’ll skate by this week…
…Because the Kong for last week is Victor Ireland of Gaijinworks for sticking his foot in his mouth during an interview with NicheGamer.
This was an interview that was conducted at E3 — and no, I’m not going to fault NG for just getting it out. The interview mostly centers around localizations of the Class of Heroes and Summon Night franchises. Plus, it also gives a bit of insight into some goings on at Gaijinworks. If you want to check it out, click here.
Anyway, the interview had just started and Vic was talking about how they came about publishing games like Class of Heroes 2. All is going well until, unsolicited, he starts going off on the first game’s localization.
Victor: …Class of Heroes 1 was terrible, so bad. It was so lazily localized, Atlus did a terrible job with that.
[Brandon Orselli]: How so? It was that bad?
Victor: Yeah, they know they did. It was so lazy. I was seriously offended by how lazy it was.
We knew 2 was better, and 3 was even better―literally, Class of Heroes is one of the only games from Japan where each iteration was an improvement. Part of that is because one started so low. (Laughs) But by the time you get to 4 and 5, you’ll start getting some pretty good ratings. I’d say 2 and 3 are 7s and 8s out of 10.
Anyway, in Class of Heroes 1 they didn’t even translate the monster attacks―like, when a monster hits you and it’s all, “Boom, pow, biff,” or whatever? They left it all in Japanese! I was like, “C’mon guys…” Ours are all translated, because everything should be.
…Okay. While I won’t rail on him for wanting to translate every single solitary detail of the game, you can’t really blame the localizer for a game that you admit was the weakest of a series. That’s like saying you’re going after someone who gave you a bag of dog crap because the bag was wrinkled.
And then later, this happened.
Brandon: …What are your views on censorship? And even self-censorship.
And before you answer, remember that you’re speaking to an audience that is heavily anti-censorship.
Victor: Situational. In general I’d give censorship a NO. But I’d also argue there are cases where self-censorship is probably appropriate. People get really upset when games, and especially hentai games, are censored. But there are some things you just cannot do in the US, they aren’t appropriate.
Actually, that wasn’t that bad. At least he didn’t give examples.
Victor: …For example, and I’d love to do this one: THE iDOLM@STER. Those are great games, but they have some stuff that I don’t think would fly here. Basically, it’s borderline pedophilia. Those scenes, like it or not, are gonna either be removed entirely or repurposed for something else…
…I think Criminal Girls’ censorship was pretty justified, though. I mean, half those girls were underage, and you’re spankin’ them and stuff. I just think that sort of thing doesn’t work in the US.
…And here come the links to articles talking about minors in skimpy outfits written by Western publications.
I’m not saying it’s right, I’m just saying that it’s already been there. For a long time! Remember the countdown to when the Olsen twins turned 18? Although, I’d say that’s more the fault of people that jerk off to actual minors than anything video game related.
Well, at least he didn’t completely trample on his potential audience.
Victor: …Really, if you’re that much of a purist that you absolutely need those things, learn Japanese and import the game. We had people complaining about some of the stuff we cut out in other games to make them more culturally relevant to the US, too. For people wanting direct translations, I’m sorry, but you’re just not the market.
…Then what market are you trying to sell to? I thought the niche market that liked these games would prefer a more Japanese experience. Am I wrong about this? Seriously, if you’re a fan of these games, leave a comment below and let me know if I’m right or wrong about that.
In the meantime, Gaijinworks, get this man fixed. He has no filter!
Victor Ireland, Kong of the Week.
Agree with the choices? Have your own opinion on who should have been King and Kong? Let us know in the comments.
Aliens: Colonial MarinesCensorshipGaijinworksGearbox SoftwareJim SterlingRandy PitchfordXSEED Games