So, I’ve been running Ghost Gamer News for coming up on 3 years now. I’ve covered AAAs, and I’ve covered small indies. Good games, bad games, and even Star Citizen have gotten attention from me.
This week, however, I decided to change my mind on covering one game: The Last of Us Part 1.
I fully planned on doing at least a review; many PC gamers have yet to play TLOU, and given it’s a stealth game, it makes sense for me to cover it, right?
Sure, in the broad strokes, but there are 2 important factors I always consider before I decide to cover it:
Is it a game that I personally want to spend my very limited available time to play?
Is it something I can see value from?
That last point refers to 2 aspects of “value”: Do I feel like spending launch-day money on the title, and do I feel like it’ll generate enough site traffic (and therefore ad impressions/repeat visitors) to be worth covering?
The Last of Us Part 1 on PC is a unique release in that – at first – I thought both were true. After playing it (well, mostly attempting to), I changed my mind.
I’m not here to stroke game developer’s egos, and I’m sure they don’t care if I do anyway.
I’m a small independent publisher, but more importantly, I’m a fan of gaming.
I’ve been an apologist (sorta) for a handful of titles.
Ghost Recon Breakpoint launched this site.. And thankfully, the site wasn’t near as buggy as Breakpoint was at launch.
Star Citizen is one of my favorite games to play right now, despite also being a dumpster fire.
The Last of Us Part 1, however, failed so hard on release in such a way that I decided it was time to exercise my Steam refund ability.
There is no excuse for the state The Last of Us Part 1 launched in on PC.
Naughty Dog defrauded PC gamers with The Last of Us Part 1
A handful of bugs are to be expected on a PC port, and I’d even understand using the less desirable studio to handle your port for you if the game launched in even just a slightly better state, but..
..When a game can take over an hour to build shaders (a critical process for a lot of games to build rendering assets to make things pretty, essentially) on extremely common, established hardware (that meets your recommended system specs), and then crashes excessively for most folks the first week of the launch, there is no way you can claim ignorance while marketing the crap out of the game.
Even beyond that, Naughty Dog clearly KNEW the game was in a rough state because they delayed it in order to “make sure that The Last of Us Part 1 PC debut is in the best shape possible”.
No, it seems clear that the launch was rushed in order to be a cash grab.
Even with extended refund policies that inevitably come about in these cases, it’s clear that many developers are still succeeding with bad launches and not being totally undercut by refunds just because bad launches keep happening constantly in this industry.
Fans buy the game and decide they’ll wait for it to be patched.
Fans buy the game and fail to realize they even have the option for a refund.
Fans buy the game because they have enough disposable income that it’s not a big deal to them.
Well, I’m not a fan here, and I – among many other gamers – have decided to exercise my privilege to refund the game on Steam.
Additionally, I have no plans to buy it again at a later date, and will not be reviewing it.
My time is more valuable than that, and I won’t be an apologist for such a blatantly bad release to capitalize on the popularity of a brand.