In 2010, Resistance Is Futile commented on the birth of the backlog, the side-effect of mean-spirited internet penny sales.
In 2011, Resistance Is Futile II bemoaned peer pressure, specifically the fear of spoilers (aarghnophobia) and the internet’s inability to keep it’s digital mouth shut.
In 2012, it’s time for the climax. Who will win? The selling Sith or the jaded Jedi?
Dear Emperor Palpa-
Screw it. I see your pet Vader, weaving about in the mirror. You are wondering why I shipjacked this Tie Fighter and why, right now, I’m hurtling down this trench looking for a dinky exhaust port. It’s over.
When I was young, I saw many, many games on ancient media, both cassette tape and floppy disk. I was marked for Sithhood even then, for these were pirated games. All games were expensive and so all were copied. We filled our boots with booty and promised that one day, we would play them all.
That day never came because there was always the new and the better and the more charismatic and the better designed and the sleeker and the more fabulous and the greater. Such colours, such graphics, such sounds – such intelligence. Why would I continue to play Spelunker when I could challenge myself with Spelunky? We left the ancient media to rot in forgotten closets and abused cardboard boxes. The damp claimed them and we didn’t care.
I reformed and played only what I could afford. And so I was there at the beginning, when the Republic greeted the first sales with open arms. They literally threw their money at their monitors, desperate to catch a little love on the cheap. And then there was another sale. And another. With the Empire promising joy at such low prices, the people walked away from the Republic with its antiquated economics. No longer would games be the preserve of the priviliged few. All could enjoy the many. The Empire won its battle for the hearts of the people without firing a shot. (After we slaughtered a shitload of Jedi but, as per Imperial custom, we don’t do body counts.)
The people did not expect these sales to become as common as your average redblock Wookie-whore.
And it did not take long for the participants in the Imperial Market to realise that sales were commanding all the attention. Every participant needed to offer their own sales. Eventually the broadcasts were filled with nothing but discounts and real prices were just noise to be ignored. The people forgot they could purchase games any other way. The new price was no price at all. And the developers become even more worried, and began to band together to escape the jackboot of the Imperial Stormtrooper, forming collectives to sell bundles. They even started giving profits to charity, practically begging for coin.
And the cycle is complete. Once it was called piracy, but now it is called the internet sale. The people have filled their boots with booty and promised that one day, they would play them all. We have made an empire of slaves: homeless developers who code in dark alleyways and consumers who do not even know why they purchase any more, perhaps more defined by what they have not played. #valueisdead #warningsigns
April 17, 2012 | Track Position 00:31
I have reformed and play only what I can afford with my time. I already own a backlog that I am unlikely to see the end of for years. Sales no longer own me because they are legion. Why care about today’s sale? There’s always one tomorrow. And so I can reveal that last year, contrary to the Imperial Code, I did not participate in a single sale.
I am not the only one to realise this. A game that cannot be played today does not need to be purchased today. If every citizen did this, would they crash the current system?
I feel it is my duty to end this enslavement, this denigration of play: I will find your Achilles’ hole and fire my missiles down it.
Harbour Master (Dr.)
P.S. You can try to stop me, but you’ll never take me ali