Bugs, crashes, unfinished business: The Great Gaming Disaster of 2021

I was quite surprised at how many games were released in 2021 in a very dug-up state: With clouds of bugs, compromises, unfinished work, changes that did not please players – and so on. What’s going on? That the developers would not be able to tighten up the projects correctly at the time of the covid?

There have always been mistakes. Miserable games have always been. It was always in a hurry. Everyone knows the cause of the fall of Atari, which the company was responsible for because it did not control the quality of the games – and put too much pressure on the saw when it came to making games. When Atari pushed the somewhat hurried ET Alien into the market in 1982, it was a game so strange and so often returned that the vast majority of cartridges, reportedly 3.5 million of the 4 million produced, returned – usually unsold, 669,000 returned by customers. .

Cartridges were expensive to manufacture, their contents could not be changed – and even if a large company like Atari cut down on sales estimates like this, it was a big financial loss because their production simply had to pay for. Every time I read the story, I still don’t understand how managers who just bought a license thought, came to the developer Warshaw and gave him less than half a year to come up with a concept, create a game, make cartridges and launch themselves on Christmas market. This is in a situation where Spielberg allegedly said during the presentation of the concept that he would prefer “if the game looked more like Pacman”.

So the management took a big financial risk, ignored the risk from the new concept, the risks from the development – and simply relied on the fact that it would turn out well and it would be sold because it was an ET Alien. The enormous loss that this gambling brought was among those that essentially sank the Atari in their day. The scale is a failure that can be compared to the major financial scandals of recent times, such as the collapse of Britain’s oldest bank, Barings.

Yes, to pretend that in the past everything was rosy and that in times when there was no internet, games were released only after careful tuning, is simply self-deception. Larger titles always contained some mistakes, but they were usually few and not catastrophic. This also has its exceptions, such as Elder Scrolls: Daggerfall (1996). It was a gigantic, fully 3D RPG with procedurally generated dungeons and a world that offered incredible freedom.

Source: PCTuning – Všechen obsah by pctuning.cz.

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