Friday, June 28, 2013

Ouya ouch, PS4 price drop Nvidia GTX 760

The Midaged Gamer Report for 6-28-2013

This Week:

Ouya ouch, PS4 price drop Nvidia GTX 760 and more!

First we get Ouya, then came Gamepop and now it seems Google is getting into the act with their own Android based console due out in the fall.  Apparently, Ouya's an idea worth copying with all these pretenders to the throne popping up. 

Ouya's sold out in retail markets, that's good news.  The bad news is that many faithful supporters of the original Kickstarter project are still waiting for their consoles to show up.  Backers were supposed to be first in line but a shipping snafu with DHL has left disappointed investors out in the cold. 

"Just so disappointed and discouraged at this point," said Damian, who contributed to funding Ouya on Kickstarter. "And to think of all the people and friends we've been effectively selling the console to on your behalf. At least the non-backers can get the benefit of owning the console."

Julie Uhrman, Ouya's founder has released a sympathetic statement to backers...

"I am pissed. Some of you have not yet received your Ouya -- and, to you, I apologize. I did not promise to ship to *most* of you before we hit store shelves. I promised to ship to *all* of you,"

A minor shipping issue has managed to blossom into a PR nightmare for the fledgling company that competitors are sure to capitalize on. 

With Google getting into the act and Gamepop hot on Ouya's heels it seems the old marketing adage of never wanting to be the one who's first to market because they take all the lumps rings true.  I guess they should've used UPS.

So if you're still fuming over the lackluster performance of your 4 figure AMD crossfire setup,  relief may be just around the corner.  AMD has announced a driver update due out July 31st via it's twitter feed

For the uninitiated, it appears that AMD cards in Crossfire have a serious performance issue directly related to drivers.  An issue Nvidia doesn't exhibit and one that has likely existed since the debut of multi GPU AMD/ATI configurations.  More about the story here.

Microsoft probably needs to fire its marketing department after the lambasting the company  took at E3 over their (former) Xbox1 DRM policies.  The pushback was so heated that it was looking a lot like another Windows 8 launch in the making.  You can thank Sony in part for that with their playful demonstration of their DRM policy. 

Microsoft's missteps followed by Sony's $100 price undercut on the PS4 have made Sony's console the early favorite.  This week we found out just how Sony was able to lop $100 off its price at the last minute.  In short...

Where every Xbox1 will come with a Kinect, the PS4 equivalent is now an add-on.  If you care about motion control that might be a problem for you.  It's also a potential problem for developers who have to decide if it's worth it to develop software for a device without a guaranteed market. 

From a marketing standpoint the price drop has helped the PS4 in the short term.  However, if  the lack of a camera cripples the console and forces consumers to spend the extra $100 anyway it could go badly for Sony.   

Instead of competing on features Sony is choosing to compete on price which could signal a lack of confidence in their own platform.  The only saving grace here is that Microsoft doesn't appear to have any allegiance to its own convictions either.

Why are these guys so afraid of each other?

Looking for an awesome midrange GPU that can leave AMD crying and Nvidia 670 owners fuming?  Then don't read the next paragraph.

Nvidia's announced yet another GK104 based GPU and you should care especially if you were looking at AMD's midrange cards.  The new 760 will sell for $249 and has basically the same performance as the GTX 670.  The specifications are in the table below...

Stream Proc.
Texture Units
Core Clock
Boost Clock
Memory Clock
Memory Bus Width
TSMC 28nm

With equal or better performance to AMD's 7950 at $30 to $50 less, AMD has something to worry about again.  Of course if you care about game bundles, Nvidia still comes up short but what's a game worth if the card it runs on is subpar?


So, if you've been following my blog for awhile you know that I picked up Grid 2 last month and Dungeon Siege 3 a few weeks back.  Both were on sale and both have occupied enough of my time to put the furniture in jeopardy due to game bugs.

So far, Grid 2 has been almost as enjoyable as the original game and the Racenet online component has proved to be far less intrusive than EA's Autolog.  That is, so long as you remember to set your game mode to private when you're playing with friends.  

Of course if you don't mind surprise competition horning in on your game just leave the default public setting on.  I'm still annoyed that I have to go online to play with someone in the same room. 

I've also noticed random frame corruption showing up regardless of GPU, processor or video settings.  I've seen it on all 3 of my game rigs and my friends dual GTX 680 setup as well. 

Another annoyance, car control,  It can get a bit dicey with minor contact with anything sometimes ending in a result reminiscent of Test Drive Unlimited.  In that game any contact with another object caused your vehicle to go wildly out of control.  It's not as bad as that in Grid 2 but it's noticeable.  With Grid 2 patches coming out every other day, hopefully the issue will be corrected.  It's a fun game but right now it takes a bit of patience to play it.

Dungeon Siege 3, on the other hand, is so bad that it generated its own blog post.  I've played it for about 4 hours now and while I'm getting used to the wild camera angles, poor player control and the wonky game save system I'm still annoyed with it.  I can't stomach more than an hour at a time with it.  

The game actually has about 50 achievements you can earn on Steam which seems ambitious considering how bad the game mechanics are.  Looking at the global achievement stats it appears fewer than 10% of players bother to even finish the game.  There's one achievement in particular that amuses me.  It's earned simply by playing with a friend for 3 hours straight in cooperative mode. 

I can guarantee I'll never achieve that one.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Steam had a sale, again (Dungeon Siege 3)

Steam had a sale, again

I'm a sucker for a good Steam Sale especially if it's on a title I wanted to try but was too fearful of the Metacritic Reviews to shell out the $$$ for.  

The old adage is true, you get what you pay for.

Considering I paid $3.74 for Dungeon Siege 3 I almost feel like I got what I paid for.  This latest installment of the series lets you play as one of 4 different character types.  All with unique abilities and following the standard RPG template. 

Lucas Montbarron is basically the soldier class, Anjali is an archon which falls somewhere between a mage and a fighter, Reinhart Manx is a mage and Katarina is pretty much a thief with some magical ability.

The premise of the game is that you are one of the few remaining descendants of the 10th Legion which in typical RPG fare were the guardians of all things good and light.  The game starts about 30 years after a big bad witch (Jeyne Kassynder) came along and wiped out the 10th Legion which makes everyone sad.

Within the first 5 minutes you'll instantly recognize that the camera angles and player controls were an afterthought.  Playing it for a few hours and having ample opportunity to see the exact same scenery so often (because I kept dying so much) I got the impression that visuals trumped game mechanics. 

The game does look very good, which is the extent of my praise. 

Wildly fluctuating camera angles, vague character controls and a meaningless skill tree make playing the game an exercise in frustration.  I actually bought a copy for a friend so we could play co-op.  I mean, what did I have to lose for less than $10 right? 

Without going into detail, after  15 minutes  of setting out on a new co-op campaign he said, "I'm not playing this."  I'm trying to give this thing a fair shake as I've hated other games initially only to find that it was just a matter of getting used to the nuances to make it enjoyable.  It isn't the case here.

This isn't my first RPG.  I actually started with Dungeon Siege 2, went on the Dragon Age:Origins, Torchlight, Oblivion and Skyrim.  My friend adds at least a dozen other RPGS to that list. 

So what specifically is wrong with the game?  Knowing that I don't have a lot of room to complain having paid only $3.74 I truly feel for those who actually paid $60 for it.  If that was you I feel your pain.  It's why I waited so long to try it out.

Let's start with the most glaring problem, camera control.  In Dungeon Siege 2 the camera controls could get a bit wonky but usually would keep your character in view.  in Dungeon Siege 3 you traverse the maps in fear of sudden camera changes that leave you essentially blind amidst a gaggle of bloodthirsty enemies.  If you watch the video above you'll see more than one example.  I never play an RPG in extreme close-up view but apparently DS3 thinks it's advantageous.  Luckily my female character was rendered attractively so that I could at least enjoy her looks as she lay unconscious on the ground.

You quite literally live in fear not of the enemy combatants but rather of a sudden camera change you had nothing to do with. 

Character control is almost as bad as directionality is as vague as trying to parallel park a cruise ship.  The suggestion of a direction is there but it's not guaranteed.  Which leads to the inevitable camera change when you venture too close to a wall, tree, enemy or anything else the game engine thinks you need to see in glorious HD.

The next complaint is the complete change in inventory mechanics.  Gone are health and mana potions replaced instead by powerups gained either from looting chests or dispatching enemies.  If you're the hit and fade type who likes to drop back for a quick swig of the red stuff this game isn't for you.  That's because there isn't any red stuff.  Even if there was there's no way to assign an inventory item for quick use anyway.

You earn XP and level up in the usual way but the skill trees are an unintelligible mess.  I ended up just dropping my "proficiency points" anywhere that would just get me out of the interface quickly.  Worse you're forced to assign your points when earned.  Even in the middle of battle you have to stop everything and click madly just to get rid of the dialogs.  My supposed gains from all this annoyance did little to advance my fortunes.  I still ended up dead, a lot.

Another thing you'll notice is that you don't have a lot of freedom in the game.  You're lead down a very narrow and tightly controlled path.  No running off in the heather to battle possessed wildlife.  Whatever you fight is going to be right in front of you and you usually have no avenue of retreat.

Even better, enemies tend to surround and dispatch you long before you can even hope to beat a hasty retreat.  You can end up replaying the same mission over and over again and never gain an inch of ground.  I'm still wondering if I'll ever exit the Stormsong Cavern.

Speaking of over and over again.  

If you're the type that likes the freedom to save a game wherever you want, forget it.  Saves only happen at predetermined points marked by pillars of fire and if you don't manually save a game at that point you'll end up starting over from the beginning should things go badly for you.

Autosaves don't exist, well not useful ones anyway.  I have an autosave, for example, that takes me back to a point where I was about 30 seconds into the start of the game.  Considering I had played for an hour when I had need of it, I wasn't impressed.

Lest we forget the "corrupted save" notices and the Steam sync errors that you'll inevitably run into. 
Let me sum it up. 

Look, I know I only paid 3 bucks for this game but I hoped that in 2 years Square Enix would have at least TRIED to fix some of these bugs.  I've seen exactly two patches come down for this game which tells me that nobody really cares anymore. 

I desperately want to enjoy this game at some level even if it's only staring at the seductively rendered female characters.  Unfortunately I only get to experience that when they're lying on the ground deceased and I'm not into necrophilia.

The previous game, Dungeon Siege 2, was crafted by Gas Powered Games and Microsoft Studios.  This one's got nothing in common with it save the first two words in its title.  Obsidian and Square Enix have managed to create an RPG version of Postal 3.

Glad I didn't pay much for it but given the circumstances I still feel a bit ripped off.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Xbox 1, you yelled, Microsoft Listened

The Midaged Gamer Report for June 21st, 2013

This Week:

Xbox 1 Reversal, Haswell oh well, Nvidia's mobile monster and more!

Remember when everyone was bashing Microsoft for their "always-on" requirements for the Xbox 1?  It seems like only yesterday....because it pretty much was.  Wednesday, Microsoft effectively reversed their DRM policy dropping the always-on requirement as well as the restrictions on used games.  The company also relented on the 24 hour check-in and promised that all downloaded Xbox 1 games will run regardless of whether you're online.

I'm of two minds on this.  On one hand we saw the potential for yet another failed Microsoft product launch, averted.  Windows 8 may show the way to the future but consumers weren't ready to be forced into it.  Like most Windows operating systems Windows 8's only hope is preloads on tablets and their captive corporate customer base.  As such it really isn't a pure consumer product despite appearances to the contrary.


The Xbox 1 isn't an operating system, it's a consumer device heavily dependent on discretionary income that will live or die by popular opinion.  With last week's playful PS4 demonstration of the relative lack of restrictions on the secondary PS4 game market, the future of the Xbox 1 was at a crossroads.  The entire franchise was in jeopardy if Microsoft didn't relent.  So score 1 for the consumer.

Here's the other side.  The move was typical Microsoft.  In the same mixed message that Microsoft sends with every new edition of Windows, consumers know that they'll get what they want if they howl loud enough.  It's the reason why support for long obsolete hardware and software crowd bloat your Windows directory.  It's hard to leap ahead when you're dragging along so much baggage.  It seems Microsoft doesn't have enough faith in its own vision to change anything but its mind.

So much for the new paradigm.

So if you were already aware that the extra scratch you shell out for an Intel "K" series processor has been quietly ripping you off since the release of the Ivy-Bridge then this isn't news. 
Ripping me off? but I've got an unlocked multiplier you say! 

Yes you do, in fact the new Haswell "K" series processors are the only members of the family that will allow any overclocking at all.  Even the turbo tweaks have been removed.  You don't get so much as the 400Mhz bump unless yours has a "K" after the name.  Ok, well, I guess that makes sense except that there's also been a trade-off for that price premium.

It's been confirmed that features like VT-d, TSX memory extensions and vPro security extensions have been removed from the K series of processors.  It's been theorized that this was to curb those of us too cheap to come up with the 4 figures it takes to get equivalent performance from a Xeon platform. 

So no cheap servers for you!

Even if you wait around a year for Haswell-E and are willing to take the hardware price hit because of a new socket (2011-3) and new RAM (DDR4) you're still out of luck if you care about having all the features the platform can provide. 

Most K series buyers could probably care less if all they're doing is using the platform to make their eyeballs bleed in Battlefield 4.  Still, the fact that you pay more and get fewer features, even if you won't use them, seems like a hostile position for Intel to take.

These days most of these features are probably irrelevant but the very act of consciously removing them for no other reason than to screw your consumers is reprehensible. 

Of course I suppose you could compare it to those ultra rare supercars they make in Europe.  They're really fast, look really cool and you've got to have serious cash to own them.  Thing is, most of them don't have so much as a radio to listen to let alone AC or power windows.  I suppose if you're ok with that line of thinking then Intel's strategy makes sense.

Did you ever look at your gaming laptop and wish you could stuff an Nvidia GTX 680 in there?  You can! 
Well, almost if you buy the new MSIGT 70 Gaming laptop with the GTX 780M.  The 780M is basically and underclocked GTX 680 with the same 1536 CUDA cores, 256Bit memory bus and 4GB of DDR5 memory.  It's downclocked about 200Mhz from its desktop cousin and has a lower Thermal profile but you won't notice. 

Both AMD and Nvidia are currently in a GPU war the likes of which we haven't seen on the desktop in years.  See AMD's8970M for proof.

Let's face it, AMD or NVIDIA  usually fail on their drivers and not their hardware these days.  In the mobile space, however, it's all about the hardware and the battle is taking mobile hardcore gaming in the right direction.  All the power of the top end of desktop gaming cards in a thermally and more power efficient package, that's real innovation.


We've got a launch date for Nvidia Shield and a price drop.  In the continuing saga of the cool gaming device with no purpose comes news that the handheld controller with its own console built in will be hitting the shelves on June 27th.  It'll also be $50 cheaper at $299. 

Release Date?   Confirmed

Price Drop?      Confirmed

Market?           Unconfirmed

Friday, June 14, 2013

Of E3, Battlefield 4 and consoles...

The Midaged Gamer Report for 6-14-2013

This Week:

What else? E3 news and some other stuff.

So, have you had enough of all the live streaming and relentless fanfare from this week's E3? 

After all the dust has settled what do we know that we didn't a week ago?

Which, other than their used games policy, was the only real burning question left in the mind of E3 attendees.  The rest is just filler after that.

We also know that Sony is taking a more consumer friendly route when it comes to used games meaning you can give your physical media to somebody else and it just works.  This differs from the confusing vagaries of the  onetime transfer policy of Microsoft.  At least we know that the price of triple-A console titles will stay
at the $60 price point.  Both Microsoft and Sony have confirmed it.  Not that it's a reasonable price point but at least it isn't getting worse, yet.

The Oculus Rift made an appearance and instead of everybody complaining about motion sickness, they were raving about a game demo. Eve-VR is a space battle game that takes full advantage of the VR headgear allowing journalists to focus on gaming instead of their supply of Dramamine.  Along with the demos came a rumor that the PS4 may support the Oculus Rift.  That rumor started when someone found out that developer of Eve-VR, CCP, has been working closely with Sony recently.  Considering CCP's game was chosen to show off the VR gaming headgear, it wouldn't be an unreasonable assumption.

So what about Battlefield 4?  Well there was "Pre-Alpha" gameplay at E3.  The game looked good but not quite ready for primetime meaning all the 12 year olds in the forums were already complaining about glitches.  Damage effects and destructible environments helped make the most of the experience with live action looking as good as BF3's cut scenes.  Check out replays of the live game stream here.

To stir up the hype a bit more EA decided to let loose with an unlock code for current owners of BF3.  The E3 special unlock code "BF3E3" will open up the "Close Quarters" multiplayer map.  One last hurrah for this dying edition of the franchise.  Check out EA's Origin site and you're likely to find BF3 Premium for half price. 

Be sure to check out the links above.  After all, those guys were there and I wasn't...

Sunday, June 9, 2013

May Gaming news, Xbox 1 and E3

The Midaged Gamer Report Wrap-up for May 2013

This week....who cares

Unless you really care about the change of voice actors in the next Batman or Splinter Cell or are in a lather over somebody possibly spoiling the upcoming "The Last of Us" (Hint: they didn't) This week's news was pretty light. 

I know the high point of my week was taking advantage of a Steam midweek madness sale on Dungeon Siege 3 for $4.   Hey, the cutscenes should be worth at least that, right?  It was so cheap I gifted a copy to a friend.  Share the fun or the misery I say!

We have a little better idea of what the world of console gaming as envisioned by Microsoft is after the Xbox 1 launches.  Microsoft is taking a hands off approach to dealing with the secondary market and instead deferring to the whims of game publishers.    

The cliff notes version is this:
  1. You have to have an Internet connection but you can play offline for up to 24 hours ( 1 hour if you're on someone else's console).  In related cheery news, Redmondville says you're out of luck till you get your Internet connection back up but at least you're free to watch TV or Blu-Ray discs. 
  2. You can't loan disc based games but you can give them away, once.  The other catch is that the recipient has to be on your friends list for at least 30 days.
  3. Microsoft is leaving it up to game publishers on how to deal with the secondary market.
  4. At least at launch, the rental game market for Xbox 1 is pretty much dead.

Hmm, Seems kind of passive -aggressive with just a dash of "because we can" thrown in for good measure.
If Microsoft would have taken this attitude with Windows operating systems maybe Windows 8 wouldn't have been such a flop.

Still,  It all pales in comparison to what's about to happen next week at E3.  We're promised some actual meat on the bones when it comes to the PS4 and Xbox 1 with hardware and game demos galore.  We shall see on June 11th. 

Now that that's out of the way lets take a quick look back at the high points of last month...



...ok so that's over...

But seriously,  The biggest news of the month was the Xbox1 reveal.  Where we saw games but no hardware back in the February PS4 announcement.  The Xbox 1 event showed us one game and a whole lot of silly marketing people getting excited over watching TV.  I asked the question of whether this was the console to rule them all.  If you're more than a casual gamer I think you're more interested in the PS4.  If you're looking for a cheap HTPC, this is probably your box.

May also saw the launch of Grid 2 and having spent more time with the online portion of it I can say this.  I like the driving but the multiplayer interface sucks.  I still don't see why it's so hard for publishers to understand that I'd rather play a game with my friends over a gigabit Ethernet connection than on my cable connection!  Especially when I'm in the same room.  

Here's a hint, if you want to set up a private game, make sure to turn off public visibility.  Sorry Codemasters, I may have a social media account but that doesn't mean I want to race against all my Facebook friends.

The game is almost as good as the original save the online component.  I give it an 8/10.

Nvidia also dropped a bomb that surprised a lot of people in May announcing that the Shield wasn't just an engineering exercise.   The Shield dropped and nobody really cared.  I'm still thinking this is a solution in search of a problem.  It's a neat concept but like most of my ADD afflicted generation it'll undoubtedly end up in my closet on top of some old Atari Lynx games.

AMD announced their new Volcanic Islands GPU's which appear to borrow heavily from their APU designs with both serial and parallel processing units onboard.  More than just a graphics card, there's some actual computing horsepower here for something other than rendering sexy mascots in a demo.  Why you should care as a gamer has little to do with that stuff, however.  AMD's pushing the 20nm process which means everyone else (meaning Nvidia) will be soon to follow.  Better performance, more processing power and lower power consumption are a step in the right direction.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Back on the Grid, GTx 780 and Ouya's got competition

The Midaged Gamer Report for 5-31-2013

This Week:

Back on the Grid...2, GTX 780, Ouya's got competition, and Sony says nothing

I've been literally waiting for years.  Through Dirt, Dirt 2, Dirt 3 and two versions of F1 the question that came to mind with every release was, Where's Grid 2?

It's not that the other games were bad, to the contrary, they were pretty good.  In fact after spending a considerable amount of time with Dirt I began noticing the similarities between it and Grid.  It's a lot like how Jimmy Paige's rifts are unmistakable no matter what band he's playing with.

But it still wasn't Gird, that was, until Tuesday. 

That was when the anticipation was over and Steam let us revisit an old friend.  Grid 2 is immediately recognizable to a fan of the original.  From the opening race sequence to your first car rolling into the garage the game feels like a comfortable pair of shoes.  What's different is also familiar to anyone who's played Dirt. 
The World Series of racing is basically the single player mode similar to the first game.  What's different about it is the story.  Just like Dirt, somebody was impressed by your antics in the opening race sequence and wants to throw money at you so you can do it some more.  That's not a bad thing but I'm hopeful that the game doesn't spend more time on the story than the racing.  That's a big reason Test Drive: Unlimited  2 was such a flop.  More on that later.

Online mode exposes the new Racenet platform where you can play against your friends.  I haven't found a LAN mode so just like its Need For Speed competition you have to go online to race someone in the same room. 

So far I'm impressed, graphics are good, car control is better than Need For Speed and I look forward to many hours of gameplay.  Unlike Test Drive Unlimited 2 which I uninstalled in 30 minutes...

If you were lucky enough to pre-order the game on Steam you got it for $44.99 plus 3 DLC unlocks.  I've yet to use any of them but fear not, like every triple-A title that's come out for the past 3 years there's a "DLC Store" available in game if you want them later on.  I'm sure there'll eventually be a Steam sale to make them affordable as well.

Nvidia's released a new video card based on the GK110 GPU and its list price is $649, that's the good news.  Before you go running off thinking you're going to get a rebranded Titan, however,  you may want to hold your horses a bit. 

See, it is a GK 110 but unlike the Titan it's only got 3GB of memory, 2 fewer streaming processors (12), 32 less texture units and  384 fewer streaming processors.  In effect, it's a gimped Titan as all other specs are the same.  That includes the power draw by the way.  Nvidia's tried to compensate by upping the core and boost clocks  but it's still lower than the GTX680's 1Ghz plus clocks. 

Here's my take.  If you're still running with an old 5 series Nvidia card it's not a bad deal although the price point is still a bit high.  The Titan would be perfectly priced  at the 780's price point but that's not going to happen any time soon. 

In short, it's a decent card, still a bit overpriced but then what video card isn't these days.  TWIT has a show called Before you Buy.  It's a tech products review show where they give ratings of Try, Buy or Don't buy.  In my opinion, this one's only a Buy if you're a few generations behind and can get a rebate.  Otherwise it's just filler till Nvidia has something to challenge AMD in the fall.

It was bound to happen.  Do something different and the imitators will line up.   Especially true if your backers feel left out when something interesting is happening in their market space.

So here comes another Android (Jellybean 4.2)  based alternative to the XBOX and PS4 consoles.  It's called BlueStacks Gamepop and unlike Ouya it's backed by hardware heavyweights like Qualcomm, AMD, Intel Capital and Korean game developer Com2US. 

If the name sounds familiar, BlueStacks is the same company that makes an app player that lets you play Android games on your desktop.   With mixed results I might add.   BlueStacks assures us that the technology is separate from its app player.  So why am I having flashbacks to Jon Lovitz's "Pathological Liar" character?

Unlike Ouya, the BlueStacks Gamepop promises paid games with its $129 purchase price.  Coincidentally the games that come with the Bluestacks console are worth $30.  Ouya comes with no paid games with its $99 price point.  In effect, it's a wash.

This looks more like an also ran than a real competitor to me.  For one thing, Ouya's backed by gamers, Game industry execs and developers.  Otherwise known as people who know gaming.  Bluestacks is primarily backed by hardware makers.  The fact that AMD is involved isn't lost on me either.  It seems like just another petty Nvidia versus AMD battle.

In short, I don't believe BlueStacks has its heart in the right place and will likely be forgotten a year from now. 


With last week's Xbox 1 announcement and Microsoft's subsequent answer of "kinda" to the used games question, anyone who cares was asking, what about the PS4?

The resounding silence was deafening.  Sony has not released any official statement and instead leaves the pundits hoping for more than ambiguous scraps of news at the upcoming E3.  All we know at this point is that Sony itself won't enforce any requirement for online game registration but game publishers are free to do as they please.

Slow news week in gaming, guess everyone's waiting for E3.