The mainstream gaming media can’t seem to stop itself from constantly alienating its readership, despite claims that it is not responsible for the narrative that gamers are crazy. What insurmountable and wholly unreasonable requests have the paying consumers that keep this industry alive made now? Only that From Software, makers of the Dark Souls series, port their new PS4 exclusive Bloodborne to the PC.
So absurd and outlandish was this request that gaming websites began tripping over one another in their race to bash gamers as entitled.
I Don’t Think That Word Means What You Think It Means
The petition, on Change.org, makes a simple request: port Bloodborne to PC. Anyone who’s seen the footage or read the reviews would understand why. Bloodborne, not withstanding its near-universal critical acclaim, is basically a spiritual successor to the Dark Souls series. This is the series that put Japanese software developer From Software on the map in North America. It’s not difficult to understand why everyone would want to play this game or why they would request the port; unless, of course, you’re some kind of cloistered gaming media writer.
PlayStation Enthusiast (three guesses as to where they stand on PS4 exclusivity) offered the following criticism:
13,000 signatures over nine months is a pretty poor turnout to say the least and frankly, the whole thing reeks of entitlement. Of course it would be great if every game were released on every platform, but that’s just not the way the gaming industry works.
It should be noted that as of this writing, the petition now has over 26,000 signatures.
MCVUK editor Ben Parfitt, someone who has been pretty vocal on Twitter against GamerGate, dispensed his opinion from on high…
…only to get wrecked in the replies from people with basic common sense and an understanding of how the free market works.
CraveOnline, who doesn’t understand that all websites are online and must offer that distinction to its readership, displays the most egregious example of how to bash the gamers whose money this industry depends on. In an article titled “Petition to Bring Bloodborne to PC Claims From Software Betrayed Gamers,” author Paul Tamburro offers his thoughts on how gamers are being whiny little bitches.
While in an ideal world it would be preferable for every game to release on every platform and thus mean that everyone could share the same experiences, it’s not as if From Software has decided to release Bloodborne as a PS4 exclusive is an act of spite, and the petition reeks of a staggering sense of entitlement…
If Bloodborne eventually does release for the PC, it’s unlikely that this little protest will have had anything to do with it.
That’s a fairly bold assertion, and it completely ignores recent history which contradicts it. Continuing in the trend of anti-GamerGate pundits who suffer from a lack of research, what all the publications above managed to miss was that it was a petition that got the original Dark Souls on PC in the first place.
History Teaches Us A Different Lesson
It all began on the Namco Bandai forums in January of 2012. A post by an unidentified Namco employee suggested there had to be demand for a Dark Souls port on PC in order for it to occur was picked up by RockPaperShotgun.
Quite a few people have sent me this link to a forum post in which a Namco employee suggests that has to be “demand” for a PC version of acclaimed console RPG Dark Souls, if it is to show up on the one true format. It seems to me that Namco decided there wasn’t demand, of course, because the game has so far only turned up on the TV boxes…
But I suppose there are only thirty million or so Steam accounts, and hundreds of millions of better-than-360-spec PCs worldwide… What possible market could there be for such a game on the age old Windows machine?
While Namco initially denied that a port for Dark Souls was being considered, and the forum post was widely considered an errant thought by a random employee, that’s all it took. Less than a week later, over 70,000 people has signed a petition. Then Namco, From Software’s publisher at the time, remembered it liked money.
Namco admin Tony Shoupinou responded to the petition in the forum:
Damn you are amazing! I honestly wasn’t expecting such a massive support. My boss(es) even came to talk to me about this, after it exploded all around the world. If you wanted to have the attention of Namco Bandai Games, now you have it. The future is in your hands, and I hope you will keep supporting this. I make a personal objective to make sure every relevant people in Namco Bandai Games is in touch with this formidable effort.
Dark Souls: Prepare to Die released in August of 2012, and while as a PC game it was missing most of the adjustable bells and whistles, it wouldn’t have existed at all without the vocal and numerous gamers who signed the petition.
History Repeats Itself
So we have a situation in 2012 where people petitioned From Software for a port of a console-exclusive game and got it. Now we have a situation in 2015 where people are petitioning From Software for a port of a console-exclusive game. Yet the mainstream gaming media assures us this will end in failure?
The only failure here is a distinct failure to learn the lessons of the past. Money talks, in this and every industry. The customers as a whole determine what lives and dies. This is the beauty of the free market. I would be ashamed if I was so out of touch with the industry I was charged with writing about. But if the SJWs have taught us anything in the past six months, it’s that they have no shame.
I wonder if anyone is taking pre-orders of Bloodborne on PC yet.