This started last week, as we are in lockdown and curfew I decided to play Watchdogs: Legion again. I like the game and more importantly I will try to get all the missing achievements. I had to reinstall the game, which is fine and this led me to find a new bug, which irritates me and off course the announced DLC with Assassins Creed, which hit me two days after the reinstallation, so I was overall happy. The 25GB addition has been added just now (I did not look at it yet), but at some point I started to think about protagonists and antagonists. Gaming is full of it and that took me towards Infamous, which was a really nice game (the first two), the third was graphically good and the start is nothing short of brilliant, but it then simmers down into a linear steeplechase which you can do twice to get the good and the bad parts. It is that reminder that got me thinking on the path we play, not the part, but the path. It is often to much to ones side, all good or all bad. So what happens if we take a new character and take a page from the books of Tartarus? On a few occasion (and a few sources) we see that Hades had children Macaria, Melinoë, Plutus, Zagreus, and Erinyes. Then we get to a very different chapter, that is the chapter of Nikolaos. Nikolaos was mortal, which seemed odd as he is the child of Macaria and Ares. So that character could set in motion the idea of change. Consider that death is what nearly all people fear most, a child of the rules of the underworld and the god of war could be able to change the gameplay. So if we take a page out of the Infamous page. One does not need to be all good and all bad, both sides gives us abilities and to draw n that you can also punish in much more defined ways. Consider the setting where an exploitative CEO is take (alive) to the underworld to be tortured for all time by their victims, and the better the punishment, the more relieve of the torturer, moreover, that damage to the soul becomes energy that you need and you can harness.
That is merely scratching the surface, if you are ready to become a deity you must appease both mum and dad and you know dad, dad is never easily pleased.
From there the gameplay deepens (not alters) as a person of two dimensions, you have to keep track and satisfy the needs in both, even as the underworld is your domain, it still adheres to rules of power, it always has, you merely need to brush up on your historic writings to realise that. And t consider this now makes sense in a few ways. As streaming systems become the larger front, it will be important to write to a much larger audience on a larger stage. More important, if you consider that Watchdogs, one mere addition is taking 25GB, what will the next stage imply? That is not on or against Ubisoft, they are giving you a free DLC, yet consider that 4-5 games do that, now consider that most of you are alone and in rural places that much bandwidth is the end of your free monthly usage, that implies that you are now due for a much larger invoice ($10 per 1GB), as such we need to rethink how we do things, how we distribute games and how we tailor to these needs. Streamers are not in that stage yet, it needs time. You see one source gives us “According to Luna, the standard option might use up to 10GB per hour.” This implies that many will hit the maximum bandwidth after 30 hours of play, that is less than a week, as such there needs to be a larger evolution of streaming games and it will keep consoles around much longer.
So did I change topic?
No, they are linked, to evolve RPG gaming is essential, to get the technology up to speed to allow for that is a massive second. And in this we get the new setting and Ubisoft showed us the way (yes, they do get things right at times). Cross-play is seen as one thing, a game that is played on many different systems, but cross-play can also mean that one environment houses multiple games. As Watchdogs London gives rise to Watchdogs and Assassins Creed we see a new environment evolve, just like we had thick clients and thin clients in client server environments. The stage where we create one environment, but over time it will house several games and here we see a new stage, one where streamers become thin streamers. Yes it will not be today (or tomorrow) but when your streaming system is added to your PS5, or Microsoft contraption we now choke streaming bandwidth to a fifth or less. More importantly there will be an option for independent developers to create near perfect versions on Manhattan, London, San Francisco, Washington, Paris, Amsterdam, Stockholm and we can add to that. Now consider that a game like Assassins Creed or Watchdogs is no longer defined by WHERE they play, but by what you do there and now we see the consequence of changing the roles of protagonist and antagonist, optionally joining them.
Consider that you are the next Watchdogs and even as a lot of the mission seem similar, the fact that they are not in the same place alters it, the buildings might still exist, but the buildings will be different. It will require an evolution of programming and also the evolution of gaming data, to set a stage to such a large domain will take a massive evolution, but we gamers are worth it and in a stage where gaming revenue is likely to top $175 billion in 2022, the players with the most evolution will decide the game play and that is where developers need to find themselves, a larger stage where the IP is not set to a location, but it is optionally set to ANY digitised location. A stage no game developer ever considered before, but that time is changing a lot sooner than you think, no matter how fast 5G will be, if there is a data plan there is a limit, as such they need to find ways to circumvent these limits, it will create a whole new level of loyal customers and the rural players (which is still 40% of all gamers) is too large a group to ignore. To emphasise towards an exploitative business model will backfire, of that I am absolutely certain.
So what about Nikolaos?
Well that is still in the works of the brain, but consider that he can develop his powers and please mummy and daddy at the same time on a much larger scale, can set the premise towards punishment and relief to people in many ways, we can see a new stage of networks (Watchdogs), streets (location) and souls (people) and now take the previous givens and consider that these are linked. We can address people via networks and via locations, the locations gives access to people and networks and people can find networks and locations. The option of taking over anyone in Watchdogs: Legion was a lot more brilliant than we think in that regard and in the next era that could go a long way.
So as children of Hades, the Erinyes (furies) could come to people in dreams. The quote “the Erinyes, that under earth take vengeance on men, whosoever hath sworn a false oath”, now consider that marketing is often about ‘deceptive conduct’, if that is a false oath they should be scared shitless on getting a visit from the Erinyes. As such so should any CEO, CFO, and optionally any COO as well. Now consider Plutus, this one is the odd duck found in Greek and Christian settings, in Canto VII from Inferno by Dante Alighieri we see “Plutus is a demon of wealth who guards the fourth circle of Hell, “The Hoarders and the Wasters”. Dante likely included Plutus to symbolise the evil of hoarding wealth”, we now have a whole lot of new materials to work with and that is merely the beginning stage.
We can look at limiting all we can, but when you consider that there is still a larger cost to streaming and that is one part people want to avoid, evolution of gaming becomes central. We get it, we can stream via our consoles and that is fine, but the data-man (your data provider) will exact revenge for usage (via a monthly fee) and overdrawn is a costly experience, so we need to evolve one to get the other and there are ways of doing that. I merely wonder if the makers ever considered to taking a very large leap to the right (where the creative part of the brain tends to house itself). I hinted at a few other things, but left them unspoken. It is for you to consider them and see where it can take gaming. I can’t do everything myself.