chronovore: (sweater)
I work in Unity; my partner had me purchase Unity Pro so we had parity in working environment; we didn't want ANYTHING to bite us in the ass over version differences; little did we know, Unity is capable of fucking up ANYTHING.

My initial license is $75/month and doesn't cover iOS builds. Soon, Unity allows for iOS builds in non-Pro subscriptions, but with a splashscreen. My clients don't want a splashscreen.

I spend three weeks sorting out with Unity how to make this happen, because (a) the fuckers didn't respond to net inquiries through their site for 10 days, until I called them out on Twitter, and (b) the solution was actually right in front of me in a mail which allowed for a subscription upgrade... but Unity had not included any form of language in the offer about what is actually included. NONE. Not a damned thing.

When support finally confirms that the offer will get me splashscreen-free deployment on iOS, I proceed through payment. Despite Unity having my CC information on-hand for my existing subscription, it requires me to re-enter my CC info. This engages a new in-frame "Verified by Visa" step which requires another re-entering of the same data. After that, it wants me to establish a password for Verfied by Visa, which I do. After that, it drops me back at the Unity store page:

DECLINED

Not only declined, but as I found out today, nearly a week later, it had triggered fraud protection on my CC, so the other charges I've made since then were blocked without notification. I spent nearly an hour on the phone with the bank today clearing all that up.

My CC is again available for use. I re-initiate the process for buying the "new Pro" subscription for Unity, but now the price on the specified site (only accessible through my special offer mail), which is supposed to be $75/mo through 12/31 instead shows $125/mo.

I'm as mad as a cat forced to wear wet pajamas.
chronovore: (sweater)
Japan suffers from Galapagos syndrome, or something like it. Cable never took off here; Broadcast Satellite dishes were more popular than cable delivery. There was never a revolution from brick-and-mortar rental stores to mail-delivery a la Netflix, and while digital PPV had an advertising push last year between Hulu and DMM, I'm not sure how many people actually use them. Most surprisingly, in this land of vending machines, the RedBox model has not appeared yet.

I guess I'm saying the video distribution model doesn't really sync up with anything else.
chronovore: (Default)
To gamers who bitch about the greed of publishers who are trying to offset the financial damage caused by the used market by offering free functionality codes with new games which are also purchasable DLC for used copies of the game, fuck you.

You aren’t those publishers’ customers, anyway. You’re GameStop’s customer.
chronovore: (Default)
Gartner forecasts phones overtaking PCs as most common web browsing device by 2013 -- Engadget:
and that by as soon as 2012, 20% of businesses will "own no IT assets" -- meaning that employees would be using their own personal computer, and that the businesses themselves would be relying on cloud-based services.
chronovore: (Default)
Report: US industry employment count rises marginally // News:
Employment within the US games sector has risen slightly on last year thanks to the opening of a number of new games studios dedicated to social and online gaming, research has found.

A census of North American gaming companies found that employee numbers have risen from 44,400 in 2008, to 44,806 in the US. Of that small rise, many come from an unusually large number of new studios, particularly social and online ones, which have sprung up to counterbalance the closures felt throughout the rest of the industry.

Meanwhile Canadian companies have seen "explosive" growth throughout the year, said the report, with the establishment of new studios and the expansions of existing ones contributing to a 30 per cent increase - to 12,480 - in the region's employee count.

The findings come from the third annual Game Developer Census compiled by Game Developer Research.

California remained North America's heavyweight area, with 20,815 developers employed there (46 per cent of the US total). Washington was the second most popular with 4500 employees, and Texas third with over 2600.

However, anecdotal evidence uncovered by the research indicated American game development was becoming less clustered around urban centres.

seen on /.

Sep. 29th, 2009 01:15 pm
chronovore: (Default)
Slashdot IT Story | Bad PC Sales Staff Exposed:
Q: What's the difference between a computer salesman and a used car salesman?
A: The used car salesman knows when he is lying.
chronovore: (Default)
Apple could make a bajillion more dollars on iTunes Music Store by putting a "jump to store" button next to the artist name on the iPod Touch and iPhone's Now Playing screen. This button exists in the desktop version of the iTunes application, a tiny arrow next to each of the band, title, and album name entries; it immediately searches the iTMS with the specified text string.

So many times I'm listening to something and think, ooh, hey, I like this... only to find it's something I picked up off an MP3 blog or picked up as a single through eMusic. Apple only has to go one more step before music becomes an impulse buy item.
chronovore: (furious)
Who the hell do I complain to about the ads that are appearing on Xbox Live's Dashboard?

The Dashboard auto-loads the "Spotlight" channel which has, until now, limited itself to new game announcements, content, tips and strategies, community events, and in the non-game category, special Netflix offers or Xbox media-specific music and videos. All about the Xbox 360 and things you can do with it, no problem. Occasionally there are TV show and movie promotions for items which are not yet for download on the service, but they usually offer free gamerpics or themes for the 360; those are called presents.

The other day there was a item in it for Progressive Auto Insurance. Like a trained monkey, I automatically selected it to see if it had a contest or some DLC for it, or Forza or PGR DLC associated with it. But selecting it just played a low resolution TV advertisement. Nothing to do with games, nothing to do with Netflix or any other XBL-connected service. A TV ad hosted front and center on the Live service I'm paying US$50 a year for. What's next, unskippable advertisements?

Edit: Apparently SONY already had this great idea. I am speechless.
http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3175430
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] andrewv for the clue.
chronovore: (furious)
Slashdot | Last.fm To Start Charging International Users: as announced on their official blog. Announced at the end of March, it was shortly after this that my 30 song countdown "trial" initiated after using the service off and on since April 2004. So to my comrades in North America, Canada, and Germany who could not figure out what I'm talking about, this is it. €3 a month would return Last.fm's dubious playback features which rarely played the track or even the band I wanted, and music-matching inferior to Pandora.com's implementation. Now all I can use Last.fm for is to figure out how musically incompatible I am with each of you.
chronovore: (Default)
Dear Lazyweb,
Though I'm a big proponent of meeting and playing with co-workers outside the office, because playing and talking with other people improves interpersonal relationships, fosters empathy or at least sympathy, and leads to greater acknowledgment of each other as something more than an office drone who can only ask for favors or pile on additional work.

However, when it comes to social networking sites, it seems best to Stay Well Clear of co-workers, not only so they're not scoping the pictures from the family picnic from that day you couldn't work on the weekend, or entries about hangovers when you reported in with "some kind of cold, and maybe a fever."

With those two examples, it seems like exchanging gamertags should be a good idea because it allows for outside-the-office gameplay time,  but on closer inspection it's probably closer to SNS, isn't it?

I mean, co-workers here are frequently talking about their online experiences and we all complain about how the 360 is not selling in Japan -- but no-one exchanges their GamerTag information. Here we have a mess of potential available players, but no dice. Is it the fear of a 3 a.m. gaming session being found out that creates that social barrier? Or are they afraid of dominating co-workers too much, effectively having to take it easy on them rather than being able to just game and release stress?

How does this hold up outside Japan? Are European or North American offices similar?

Last.fm

Apr. 30th, 2009 03:20 pm
chronovore: (Default)
Huh. So Last.fm's business model went from being "free, everywhere" to having "free, but not available everywhere" to "Enjoy 30 songs which aren't the songs you wanted to hear, but are related to the ones you like, because they're by the same artist, or similar artists... now that you've had 30 songs' worth, how do you feel about US$3/month to keep kind of hearing what you wanted?"

I'll poke around and see what I'm still able to listen to there. If they've shut off Friends' "radio" stations, promotional channels and all that, I'm going to be impressed with the level of stupidity.
chronovore: (Default)
Sony plans new PlayStation 3 bundles // News:
A LittleBigPlanet 80GB bundle is also due in Japan, retailing for JPY 44,980 (EUR 327 / GBP 255) complete with a copy of the Media Molecule-developed title and two DualShock 3 controllers.

In addition, the DualShock 3 will also be bundled with a copy of LittleBigPlanet for JPY 7980 (EUR 58 / GBP 45), and also available in silver, black and white.
chronovore: (furious)
EA Chicago vets sign with Activision // News:
Development veterans behind the Fight Night and Def Jam series for EA Chicago have formed a new studio and signed with publishing heavyweight Activision.

Robomodo was formed earlier this year following the closure of EA's Chicago outfit, and is lead by director Josh Tsui, who has previously worked on Mortal Kombat titles for Midway and Fight Night Round 3 for EA.

"At Robomodo we are dedicated to doing it right, from the way we approach game design and art, to the methods we use to manage our projects," commented Tsui.

"Our culture is focused on enabling game designers and artists to innovate, while providing them with proper management oversight and technology support."

The 35-man team has already inked a deal with Activision to work on one of its key franchises, although further details are still under wraps.

"Activision has embraced our vision and agreed to give us a shot with one of their IPs. We are fortunate to be working with the largest publisher worldwide, and we are looking forward to collaborating with their team on one of their upcoming games," added Tsui.

Joining Tsui as partners of the studio are David Michicich who takes on the role of CEO, Nick Ehrlich as COO, Peter Sauerbrei as CTO and Richard Ho acting as motion director.

Tsui, Michicich, Ho and Ehrlich all first worked together at Midway, and have since gone on to work on titles including Tao Feng for Microsoft, Wrestlemania 21 for THQ and Def Jam ICON for EA. [emphasis mine]
No offense, but JESUS GAWD, no wonder they were dropped. I am officially giving up hope for whatever they're working on. Fight Night Round 3 and Def Jam Icon LOOKED great, but FNR3's Total Punch Control is an innovation in search of a need, and everything that worked right in Def Jam Vendetta gameplay can be attributed to AKI.
chronovore: (mouthy)
Slow GTA IV sales to trouble EA/Take-Two talks? // News:
However, NPD Data shows that GTA IV was the 46th best-selling game in August, down from 45th place in July. The slowing sales have caused concerns that, with 8.5 million units sold to date, the title may fail to meet sales expectations.
chronovore: (OMFG)
Tor.com / Science fiction and fantasy / Blog posts / Freebies Bonanza: a bunch of full books in various non-DRM'd formats, and bunches of wonderful fantasy art desktops are available for a limited time at Tor. Wow. Thanks [livejournal.com profile] theothermichael!
chronovore: (mouthy)
My ISP just sent me a lengthy email detailing in outline form all of the new features they'll be upgrading my service to next month. The entire letter is a giant PNG file, not text. C'mon, Rambo. Are miniscule variations on sans-serif typefaces THAT important to you? Or are you just utterly stupid?

...Can there possibly be a technically reasonable explanation for sending out a mail in graphic form, in this day and age? I mean, I can't even search my files for its text, should a need arise. Jackasses.

Edit: One main point in the mail is that my hosted website will be "frozen" from July 24 to August 5; nearly TWO WEEKS... and they're giving me apparently 8 hours notice about it. Double-Jackasses!

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