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Thread: Cave + Xbox 360 OMG

  1. Here is a letter I am writing. I may hand-write it, but I will try to see if I can't get someone to read it and take it seriously. Let me know what you think, want to add, reword, whatever

    I am writing this letter because many of my friends and I are big fans of Xbox Live Arcade and we feel that there are mixed messages being sent to the XBLA faithful. This is not really a letter about all the issues we have with the service but rather one key one and that is the type of games getting onto or being kept away from the platform. Recently, a publisher in Japan has picked up the rights to port two arcade vertical shooters to the 360. Originally, the plan was to bring them to the service, but apparently they have been turned down because Microsoft wants to move away from the "faithful arcade ports". This does not make much sense to a lot of us. While we understand what is released is already released and talking about those titles at length is fruitless when going forward, I think they need to be discussed. Games like Asteroids have been ported to every electronic device that can handle it. The game has been re-released and improved upon in the freeware community for years. That is to say, most fans of the service wouldn't miss the game if it wasn't ported to Live Arcade. It was, and I'll add it might as been for the worse regarding the enhanced version. The particles that emerge from an explosion of the second smallest asteroid prevent the player from seeing the directions of the two tiny ones, resulting in a lot of deaths if the asteroid is attacked near the ship. But enough about that.

    Ketsui and Dodonpachi Dai-Ou-Jou are widely regarded in the hardcore shmup community as two of the best ones ever made. They are fast, challenging, have deep scoring systems and people are still trying to perfect runs in them. The problem is, however, that aside from any potential emulation (and I am not sure either one is emulated), the only way to play Ketsui is to own the actual PCB and a Supergun or a dedicated arcade cabinet. The only additional way to play Dai-Ou-Jou is with a Japanese Playstation 2. I have the luxury of having a friend with both boards, and I own Dai-Ou-Jou, but most people cannot say this. As such, they will not have the opportunity to play these great games.

    The confusion that we have is that there is a battle between quality and quantity. Microsoft seemingly wants to limit the amount of titles, but that only really matters when what gets through is quality. I don't want to undermine a lot of the games on the service, but beyond games like UNO, many other ones make an attempt to expand the audience but ultimately fail, perhaps due to quality. If that bumps out a game like the aforementioned shmups, it is frustrating to the core base that is responsible for much of the revenue the service brings in. I, for example, have around 90 full Arcade games, all paid for by my own points save for the occasional giveaway title like Texas Hold'em. When I heard that these two shmups were coming to the 360, I was pretty happy because I'd get to play them a) on my favorite system or b) (as is the case with Ketsui) more often than I can because I don't own it already. When I heard they were originally intended as Live Arcade titles, I was disappointed because buying them is a lot cheaper than buying a Japanese system and the games, something which I was originally prepared to do. But not everyone is for a few reasons. Cost is certainly one, but what gave me pause was the possibility of the Japanese system malfunctioning, causing a huge turnaround time (my friend did import a system, and when it broke, it took a very long time to fix in comparison to an American one).

    I feel that this unfortunate stance toward Live Arcade will put the hardcore followers off of the platform. Again, I am sure that most of the people that buy a large amount of Live Arcade games buy a lot of retail software at full price (I have about the same amount of retail games as I do Arcade games at this point). While we understand that games like Ketsui and Dai-Ou-Jou won't bring in a ton of revenue like a port or remake of a classic IP--although I'd argue that as of right now they would outperform many of the games on the service--it would be a great show of goodwill from the Live Arcade team to let us know that we are important consumers too.

    I am not alone when I say that one of the largest things separating the 360 from its competitors is this service, and making it the best it can be will go a long way toward keeping the hardcore audience on the platform.
    Last edited by Joust Williams; 05 Apr 2008 at 12:11 AM.

  2. Quote Originally Posted by Joust Williams View Post
    what gave me pause was the possibility of the Japanese system malfunctioning, causing a huge turnaround time (my friend did import a system, and when it broke, it took a very long time to fix in comparison to an American one).
    Sorry for the off topic, but could you explain more about your friend's situation? Did he just send in his JP system to MS USA, and they sent back a JP system? In other words, will a JP system be covered the same way as a US system in the USA? If so, I'll probably buy one (again - I had one before but sold it long ago).

  3. I will try to find out.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by bbobb View Post
    I was one of those 3000.
    Buy a few more and sit on them til they're selling for $200.

    Seriously, I'd be all over a 360 for these but restricting XLBA and region locks seems like a cruel joke. Shikigami III still slated for US release? *-neo

  5. Quote Originally Posted by Joust Williams View Post
    I will try to find out.
    Thanks, appreciated. I read, on a different forum, about a guy in the USA who said he sent back his JP X360 to MS USA after it red-ringed, and they did indeed send back a JP one to him. Just trying to corroborate his story.

  6. Well, they did, I know that much. I think there was a hang up on them initially understanding what JAPANESE SYSTEM meant. But I shouldn't say as I really don't know the particulars.

  7. Honestly, I'm holding off on buying a 360 until I've figured out how I'll be able to play Ketsui and DDP DOJ on it.

  8. Also, Joust, FYI the game coming to the X360 is Dodonpachi Daioujou Black Label. The Black Label version has never been ported before (it includes numerous gameplay tweaks, and has different scoring potentials).

  9. good point, I forgot about that

  10. Quote Originally Posted by Joust Williams View Post
    I would be but, oh wait, not region free. I wonder if they realize that it'd sell more in the US than Japan, seeing as how there are about 50x as many systems. Even if the Japanese 360 fans ARE hardcore.
    It kind of bugs me the attitude of companies like this. They could make the game region free, work out a deal to send a bunch of copies to Amazon to sell to US Xbox 360 owners, and they'd more than likely make far by doing it themselves that way. Instead, they're going to sit around hoping that some US company picks the games up, which who knows if will ever happen.

    I guess, though, not knowing the money Japanese companies get for publishing rights, they probably stand to make more taking the chance of the games getting picked up versus taking a few extra steps to insure that fans in other countries could play the games, which is sad. Plus, with PS3 titles being region free from the start, I'm not so sure I would buy the argument that they have to make the releases region encoded in order to ensure a publishing deal.
    WARNING: This post may contain violent and disturbing images.

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