In other news… The Telegraphed Gazette. 18 December 2014

Hello folks,

Well it is getting close to Christmas – I hope you all have managed to get most of your Christmas shopping done. Now enough with the pleasantries, on with today’s show! Today’s topics are as follows: commentary on the latest SWTOR expansion Shadow of Revan, helping a friend advertise his book, and finally some miscellaneous news.

 

Shadow of Revan was an interesting distraction, if I may be allowed the phrase. Indeed the game is exactly what you would expect from Bioware, but I felt that it lacked the “wow factor” – like the game was given a great head start, and then tripped over a large cable and tumbled onto the floor as the other racers bolted over the finish line. Now this is going into spoiler territory so for those of you wishing to play the expansion for the story and mind spoilers, STOP READING HERE AND SKIP TO THE NEXT PARAGRAPH!!!

shadow of revan 1

Revan is “killed,” but he does not actually die, more so he just merges with his force ghost, and presto the Revan story arc is complete. Now after watching that, and then seeing the final cutscenes and so on, the expansion does the usual sequel-baiting; hinting at some new expansion for the game later down the line. Now they need to make money, I do not dispute that. Bioware needs to feed its staff, and keep the lights on in their office – sequels are perfectly fine, and people need to understand that the game is there as a means to make money (because not everyone wants to do trades, go into sales, or work in some bank). Yet it would have been nice if they had simply made the expansion feel more conclusive, you know – a real ending, something that we will remember. Truth be told I want more content, but having paid expansions that feel flushed out and whole is just as important as producing a series – they both make money, and the customers are happy with the end result.

 

Now onto some other news per se; a friend of mine has recently published a book on Amazon. Titled: “Cradle of the Matchlocker,” the story revolves around a character named Lutz Grafen as he goes to war in the northern border regions. When things go astray, he decides to take control of his life, and the rest you can read on his various Amazon storefront pages. The book is available in all regions, and you can pick it up for 5.00 USD, or your regional equivalent. Personally I like the story – it’s fluid, well written, and it is not as long as some of the books I have read on the market (the pages come in to about roughly 64). The man’s really passionate about writing, and the two of us share the same mindset. Therefore if you are interested in a general fantasy, war and miltiary story, this book might just be the one for you. The links to the Canadian, UK, and US stores are located below this paragraph.

Amazon US:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00QVUL0L6

Amazon Canada:
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00QVUL0L6?*Version*=1&*entries*=0

Amazon UK:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00QVUL0L6?*Version*=1&*entries*=0

 

Now onto some Canadian economy-related news: the price of oil is still dropping, and this means that next year growth in the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan will slow down. This could in turn produce a lot of people who will be back on the job market, and looking for work. Now with regards to jobs in Canada, many media outlets over the past year (and more) have been broadcasting that Alberta is booming, that there were: “plenty of jobs in the province.” Yet when I visited last September, the restaurants were empty on a Friday afternoon (usually people are in the sort of “holiday mood” per se as it is close to the weekend), and the cost of a plate of noodles was higher than Toronto – Canada’s largest city. The media did a great dis-service to the people of Canada when they shouted from the rooftops that the province was littered with jobs when in reality, only the oil and gas sector was booming – the rest of the province was slowly inching out of recession. This will hurt the young families the most, and especially the ones with small children as the “new arrivals” to the province will either have to move back to their respective provinces, or quickly find some minimum wage work to keep paying the bills – a fate that no one deserves, especially in tough times like these. However outside of the natural resource-dependent provinces, things are about as normal as they could be give or take. Sad news indeed, but this is reality – it hurts, and some pay a higher price than others.

 

Now in other news, the US territory of Puerto Rico has just awarded their first tax incentives for games development according to an article from Gamasutra.com. Contained within the article, it is described that the new tax scheme offers up to 40 percent in rebates on salaries and production costs with budgets of 100,000.00 and up. Great news for those in Puerto Rico looking for some help with games development as now the government has decided to step in and reward creativity – something that needs to happen more as our economies shift into a knowledge-based economy with emphasis on services and banking. You can read the full article in the link below.

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/232649/Puerto_Rico_awards_its_first_tax_incentives_for_game_development.php

 

Some more good news coming this time from Valve: the game Hatred has been restored to Greenlight following its removal from the storefront. Now Hatred itself is a questionable game, but for the sake of creativity, and in support of the free market, I have to say that unless the game goes out of its way to actively promote genocide, the game should be available on Steam. Totalbiscuit made a valid point when it comes Steam in that it is not a family-friendly retailer, but rather it sells PC games. Now with the case of Target Australia removing GTA 5 from its store shelves, the company is aimed at families, and thus there is a case per se when it comes to the removal of said title. Yet ultimately video games is a form of art, and in order to allow the scene to grow and have a chance in this world, it needs to be allowed the same freedoms as artists who paint, write poetry, or create songs. Ultimately it is up to the market to decide if Hatred is worth a buy. The link to the gamasutra.com article, and to Totalbiscuit’s video on the subject is located below.

Valve has a change of heart, restores Hatred to Greenlight:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/232620/Valve_has_a_change_of_heart_restores_Hatred_to_Greenlight.php

Hatred has its greenlight page removed by Valve – Content Patch. Dec. 16th 2014:

 

Okay folks that concludes this Telegraphed Gazette for the 18th of December 2014. Take care out there, don’t forget to check our my patreon page, and I shall see you next time.

 

Thoughts and Topics Patreon Page.

http://www.patreon.com/thoughtsandtopics?alert=2

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About thoughtsandtopics

Creating articles related to the games industry and military news.

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