Early 2014 Recap

Early 2014 Recap

It’s been a while since my last news post so I’m going to recap a few things that have gone down over the holidays and in the more recent days/weeks.

YouTube Screws Up

Youtube recently netted some changes in the way content creators are protected from false DMCA takedowns, frivolous infractions, marks against their account, and ability to generate revenue – which for some, is a living. Channels like ReviewTechUSA and AngryJoeShow claim YouTube plans to begin pre-screening videos from certain channels before they’re monetized as a means of deterring copyright infringement on the site.  Multi-channel Networks (MCN’s) are also caving to some pressure from YouTube and making large drastic changes among themselves.

The changes are this – going forward, MCN’s have two options when working with individual creators, per sources. The MCNs can either designate YouTube creators in their networks as “managed” partners or “affiliates.” In the case of managed partners, MCNs will be responsible for any copyright violations these creators incur. The culpability of MCNs when it comes to copyright violations on YouTube has been an issue of late, ever since the MCN Fullscreen was sued by the National Music Publishers Association. YouTube is urging MCNs to take responsibility for its top talent. According to sources, MCNs will face a series of scaling penalties if their partners wrack up lots of violations—and individual channels or companies could face getting kicked off the platform. However, in exchange, YouTube is promising that these so-called managed creators or channels will get paid more quickly—they will essentially be able to monetize their videos without YouTube having to review their content.

On the flip side, if MCNs designate some of their creator partners as affiliates, than these MCNs will not be responsible for any copyright violations, per sources. However, affiliates may face more scrutiny when it comes to monetization. In reaction to this, a LOT of Youtube MCN partners have been cut and without the protection of MCN’s content creators are more susceptible to having their content flagged, and while flagged, revenue generation halted. One video game developer even had footage of his own game flagged and temporarily taken down. If that’s not funny enough, how about the time NASA had their Mars Rover landing footage flagged and taken down? This could spell trouble for gamers and content creators on Youtube and many of them are seeking new grounds. Unfortunately there aren’t many other sites that can promise the exposure of Youtube and big gaming sites like Twitch don’t have a system catered towards produced films – rather livestream footage.

GTA PC Release Date

The first seemingly legitimate source for a release date for the latest Rockstar installment for PC comes from a Brazilian source – actually the CEO of Nuuvem which is a digital distribution platform for Brazilian gamers. Thiago Diniz, CEO of Nuuvem said in an interview that GTA V for PC will be releasing on March 12. While it’s no solid confirmation, Nuuvem is one of the largest resellers of Steam keys, so there might be something solid to the rumor.

Starbound Mod Pulled

Starrybound, which was a server “wrapper” that allowed for more complex server control such as password protection, kicking and banning, as well as world and build protection has been pulled from the official Starbound mod repository. Tiy stated the reasoning for this isn’t a small trifle – rather one of the developers has a history of completely mucking up popular games with malicious mods and intent. Zidonuke (the developer in question) was involved in an unofficial release of the minecraft tool bukkit. Which gave him backdoor access to other people’s servers, which he then used to ban admins from their own servers. Zidonuke also became staff on a forum called the f-list, he used his position to read users private messages. Eventually he admined everyone on the site and cleared the ban list. Essentially destroying the forums. And if that’s not douchebag enough for you, he hopped onto another little project called PWO ( Pokemon World Online ). He was made a developer by the uninformed developers at the time, and deleted PWO’s data and server-side coding due to being frustrated with criticism from the community. He deleted the game and it’s databases, released everyones passwords/usernames, etc. If you remember Tshock for Terraria, he and an “alias” Doridian caused similar drama with the Terraria community by implementing backdoors to grief people’s servers.

Long story short… Tiy and the other developers of the Chucklefish game Starbound weren’t going to sit by idly and let malicious software sit around on their repository and have history repeat itself but this time with their own game. While the code was public, pre-compiled versions were offered and unless you compile the wrapper yourself, you can’t be too sure of what the software is capable of.

Elder Scrolls Online Pricing

And in more recent news, prices have been released for Elder Scrolls Online – an anticipated MMO based around the Elder Scrolls universe (Oblivion, Skyrim, Morrowmind, etc) has started it’s public beta invites and is expected to drop on April 4. The game itself will fetch $59.99 (par for the course) and after the first free month will require a $14.99 monthly subscription fee (also par for the course). This game isn’t a small undertaking either, as it was recently reported to have hit the $200 million mark in development costs. Bethesda is hinging on a large portion of Elder Scrolls players to also be MMO players and to take a shot at the new Elder Scrolls Online. But with the recent fate of games such as Star Trek Online, DC Universe, and even Star Wars the Old Republic – will it be a success where others have failed? We will have to wait and see.

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Steam Holiday Sale 2013

Steam Holiday Sale

It has begun. The Steam Holiday sale for 2013 has started and will run until January 3rd. Grab a bunch of games ranging from FTL for $4.99 right now to Bioshock Infinite for under $10!

On the same note, Assetto Corsa looks to be the next big name in racing-sim games and is on sale right now for %25 off making it a reasonable $29.99. The game’s physics are amazing and it’s very open to modding and skinning the cars, tracks, etc. It’s in early access so a lot of features are going to be greyed out and will slowly become available with patches and updates. Tomorrow will see the addition of Drag Race mode, new Special Events Mode with medals and achievements implemented, the Ferrari F40, 599XX EVO, and more. For a quick look at the game, check out the video below!

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Starbound Beta Today

Starbound Beta

Starbound’s beta should start today and should be on Steam around 12pm Central (US) time. For you Pacific-Coast guys that’s 10am and for you East-Coast guys that’s 1pm. It should be around $15 or so on Steam (a benefit of early adoption) and is likely to go up to Minecraft-price after full release. You can go ahead and buy it now on their website if you want and will get a Steam key later on today after it’s on Steam. One thing to remember – is that this is the very first iteration of public beta, so there will be patches and updates daily and you may get updated with changes that force you to start your character or world from scratch. Don’t be too bummed out by this because it’s an early release and every patch or update they roll out is fixing bugs or possibly adding content. For those of you who played Minecraft during it’s beta will surely remember starting new worlds in order to generate new “chunks” filled with the new biomes or structures, etc.

Here’s a trailer to get you as excited as we are.

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