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  1. First of all, I think you're correct about companies making decisions about what's more profitable in the short term rather than actually building trust among the consumers. I mean, you can't get fucked by a single company constantly and keep returning to it. And I don't think EA is strictly evil in the most part, it's just run by stockholders who only value profit and disregard everything in the middle - from its own workers to its target market. As long as they make money, they don't care. Secondly, I didn't have a better example. It's just that even if something seems impossible, you can always put it in the cloud and have smarter people or machine figure it out for you, with the worst case scenario of whiteboxing everything. And actually, the undocumented pieces of code which link everything together might be the most important, because everything that's proprietary is documented elsewhere. Even patents will run out eventually or just became so outdated there will be a) no use of holding them or b) a better, more modern solution available, so I don't think it's so very harmful and confusing to have entire modules ripped out. It's more work than having everything laid before you, but it's less work than starting from scratch.
  2. I'm not saying it wouldn't take some major time and effort, but there have been projects that have succeeded with the exact same thing. One example comes to mind with a Deus Ex mod, HDTP. They needed to convert all of the animations, skeletons and models from a format they can modify (i.e. a Maya project) to objects UE1.5 can read, and that was a massive undertaking which could've taken them years. They've completed it in a few months using volunteers to use their own computers as a distributed server farm, and then send the results to centralized server. Again, this was a very well documented format and I'm not saying it's a one-size-fits-all solution, but it's better than nothing. Plus, even if it's buggy, it can still run. It can still be optimized, and most importantly - the game can still be experienced in some form.
  3. Well, you are assuming they would want to use the same exact middleware. While it IS more faithful to the original, sometimes it's simpler or even better to replace the module with something else. Let's say that the developers wanted to use Havok as their physics engine. By removing it and releasing the source code, the modders might be want to be unfaithful and use another physics engine, which may be a hypothetical free iteration of Havok, or another physics engine which might be open source. Now, this is stepping into mod territory from total preservation territory, but if that's the only way of keeping at least some aspect of the game alive, I'm fine with it. Heck, if there's a community for that game after some time went by, they might even improve upon it with some tinkering and state-of-the-art software. That's opening a previously unmodifiable game up for total modding, and that's a pretty big stride.
  4. Holy shit, this is amazing. I've been avoiding online-only games ever since 2004, when they first shut down Survival Project. This includes MMOs and DRM fests like everything that uses Origin. Even when I purchase games on Steam (sorry GOG, you can't compete with Steam sales), I download a pirated copy of them via torrents just so I'll have a safe backup. I'm THAT paranoid, but I can't stand the notion of games going to the trash after some sort of apocalyptic event with the delivery service. Thanks Ross for addressing this. Finally someone isn't talking about the "game experience" of online games when confronted with their limited longevity. Even MS-DOS games can be played nowadays! There are freaking Windows 95 emulators for the dark time of Voodoo graphics cards, Pentium III and FMV-infused adventure games! So why would I be able to play 20 year old games that runs on hacks and shouldn't for any reason work, but I can't play a 3 year old game that should work without any modifications done to it? It's ridiculous. I signed up just to say that. It's an issue with the industry as a whole, and I hope this video will spark an argument abolishing those bad business practices. Edit: Also Flash. Remember Newgrounds? eBaumsworld? Titans of the early internet days, without any backups. You've addressed this on The Last Stand's video, but now EVERYTHING that ran on Flash is in danger because browsers are dropping support for it. This really disturbs me, because if I'll get stricken with nostalgia some years down the line, I won't be able to see or play anything. ALL OF IT WILL BE GONE, and you couldn't backup a good portion of it because it also contains online DRM. This is not a company or a service being dropped, it's a fucking platform. It's like having the NES erased from existence. It's inexcusable, and I don't know if anything could be done to fix it.
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