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Is next gen a swan song to simplicity?

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Better graphics? Check. Faster load times? Check. Social gaming? Triple check. For everyone else who is not mega rich with money to burn, there are many options to consider before making a next gen purchase.

Will this dev allow me to lend this game to my friend? How much will the online subscription fees to play multiplayer run and exactly what is included with these fees? HDMI or standard AV composite cables included? Will upgrading the HD void the warranty? Is upgrading the HD even an option? What are company policy's for shipping back a defective unit to be fixed? Exactly how many consoles can I use the same account on? Gone are the days of simply buying a console, plugging it in and enjoying the games you purchased with no consequence. Your thoughts?

PS4 - Social gaming, data mining and being ''connected'. Why?

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Ok, so it's been confirmed PS4 wioll not require an 'always on' internet connection but how do you guys feel about the whole 'PS4 will know who you are and what you like' aspect of it? The PS4 automatically syncing with your smartphone and any other wifi devices you may have. The fact that PS4 will be able to detect how you play your games, what movies you watch, what music you listen to, your likes / dislikes and then send that info to Sony, facebook and ustream.

The fact that PS4 can 'personalize' your PSN store purchases or rather analyze every moment you spend on the console and then use that info for more personal marketing from Sony and facebook to target you with ads to get you to spend even more money seems kind of creepy imo. Do we desire instant gratification so much that we are unable to research our own likes and interests with current day technology? I know most of you probably disagree or see nothing wrong with data mining but where will this eventually lead in years to come? Do my online friends really need to know what purchases I just made, what activities I'm doing and for how long? Have gamers become so lazy that they would rather let a fellow gamer remotely control a difficult part of their as opposed to looking up the game's Wiki?

The fact that the traditional 'Select' button has been replaced by a dedicated 'Share' button speaks great volumes as to where technology is headed with everyone's need to be 'connected'. Do we really need to be 'connected' with everything we do? Or is the industry making us THINK we need to be 'connected' to the world wide web? Check my Add One Egg blog post for more details on how the business industry tricks us into thinking we NEED to keep up with the latest technology, therefore making their products and what a so-called necessity for our day to day survival.

In theory, social gaming can be great to a certain extent as I have met some cool people in co-op / multiplayer games like Starhawk, Dragon's Dogma, Mass Effect 3, etc. However, one aspect of Sony's expo that really confirmed my woes for the anti-social society we have become in real life was a cartoon animation which starts at the 2:55 mark. during the dev interviews explaing how you will be able to take your console experience with you where you go. My personal observations of real life individuals notes that 8 out of every 10 people I see either on the bus, train, store, or simply walking down the street has their head buried in a smartphone, tablet, or music player or some distracting piece of technology that shields them from real life interactions. A pretty sad reality when if you look at things in hindsight.

There was also another part in that same interview at the 3:37 mark where devs talk about how social gaming can recreate or even surpass real life interactions such as gaming in person with a few friends in the same room. When I was a kid, going to each other houses, taking turns playing games like Madden (back when it was dope), Street Fighter, etc, loser gives up the controller were some of the best gaming experiences I can remember. Not to say that social gaming can't be fun, but the devs almost present social gaming as a way to replace real life interactions which is something everyone should experience.

I'm surprised that main complaint of Sony's expo was the abscenece of a physical console reveal. Everyone seems to be ok with being 'connected', sharing personal info with strangers all the world in exchange for the latest graphics, better GPU and 8gb's of ram. How far down the road before 'always on' becomes a requirement for console gaming and you are demanded to reveal your personal info / habits just to play a single player game?

In conclusion all of the above are just one man's opinions and I am fully aware that my views fall in the minority opinion.

The 'Add 1 Egg' Epidemic - You may already be infected

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OBSERVATION:

Reading some various articles and user comments makes me question the mind state of the person standing next to me. My parents used to bore me with tales examples of how each generation gets worse and worse. Now that I am older, I see that they are very much correct. If you compare current times in marketing vs. let's say 30 years ago, you will see a big difference in the way product is marketed to consumers.

MANIPULATION:

A cunning and cryptic mastermind of mass manipulation, Edward Bernays, set the foundation for corporations to market products that 'self identify' with the unsuspecting consumer. Youtube old car commercials from the 60's for example and compare them to current day car commercials and you may see the growth of psychological marketing and how it is used to manipulate unsuspecting viewers into making them think they NEED that product. What the hell am I talking about and what is 'Add 1 Egg'?

ADD 1 EGG

A company called Genral Mills was searching for a way to market a Betty Crocker cake mix to housewives. The original idea was for the cake mix to be 'quick and easy with a home-made freshness' to it. How could this cake mix have a 'home made quality' if all the ingredients were already included? Slow, lackluster sales make General Mills very aware of this problem. Enter Edward Bernays, who was brought on to help market Betty Crocker. His solution, a simple but genuis solution was to take out the powdered eggs which was a common ingredient in over the counter cake mixes and have housewives and women consumers 'add 1 egg' into the batter which gave them a sense of 'creative contribution'. Once Genral Mills scrapped the powdered eggs and included directions to 'add 1 egg', this reinforced the idea of 'home made quality' in th emind of the consumer. Whether using real eggs vs. powdered eggs made Betty Crocker cake mix taste better is irrelevant. What IS relevant is the suggestive reassurance the 'add 1 egg' requirement gave women consumers who felt like they could put a 'personal touch' on over the counter cakemix.

WHO CARES?

Cetainly not you, if you've already asked yourself this question. Rest assured, one group of people who DEFINITELY care are companies, businesses, and corporations selling products or services to the genral public. Industries ranging from toilet tissue and cell phones to car insurance and viedo games all care because we have now reached a point wher ethe average consumer rarely questions an offer a company makes. We see the word 'savings' and 'discount' and think we are getting a bargain but are we really? Or are we just brainless cattle being milked by corporations?

SO WHAT DOES HAVE TO DO WITH VIDEO GAMES?

Video game developers are bold with marketing currently pursuading consumers to 'pre-order unreleased DLC at a discount' and still pay a remaining percentage later. Video games are current $50 - $70 on release date. 1st generation consoles like SNES, Atari and ColecoVision included all game content in the game when you brought the game. Developers are now marketing 'Season Passes' and annoucing sequels to games way before the intended games release date. I think to myself, did developers already make the DLC and decide to milk fanboys for more $ after release date? Or is this DLC already included with consumer's purchased copy and we are paying developers $ to unlock content that we should have access to when we spend $50 - $70 on purchase? Either way, it's all about $, but to what extent? If I pay $60 plus tax on a game and then have to spend an extra $40 a few months later for DLC content but offered a 15% discount if I pay an extra $20 upfront on top of the $65 plus tax, am I really coming out ahead, or just being milked? If that question lost you, fear not, companies already know the answer to this.

AND YOUR POINT IS?

People as individuals tend to think logically, but as a group, we are blinded by whatever wool is pulled over our eyes. Businesses, corporations, developers, blah, blah, blah, could not function without the consumer's dollar. Complaining and ranting about an injustice does nothing nowadays but get you labeled as a 'hater' (such a played out word) and ignored. The old saying is true, actions speak louder than words and the best solution might be to stop forking over $ and be constantly milked everytime a product is advertised to pasture. This goes not only for video games, but any product that is always screaming 'discount, savings, buy now'! As long as someone will spend $, companies rarely care about fair practices and will continue generating revenue. With that in mind, maybe we should 'buy later' or in some cases, not buy at all.

Real Hip Hop Beats

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Any artist looking for beats who is serious about rhyming or singing and want something different from the current mainstream crap on the radio, message me, I know good music and I have beats for days!