Another week has come and gone, but Beyond Co-Op will keep you (somewhat) up to date with the current events going on around the video games industry. We find some interesting news around the gaming and entertainment industry that may not directly pertain to cooperative gaming culture, and relay their messages here. This week, two popular fighting games are shown some respect in the pro community, Microsoft addresses some issues people are having with the "Games With Gold" program, and a gamer like you and I finally reached their extremely impressive gamerscore goal.
Capcom Introduces an Official Street Fighter League, Nintendo Approves SSBM at EVO and MLG
Partnered with Twitch, Capcom will be introducing an official, annual video game league to be the premiere spot for their legendary fighting franchise’s pro scenes. Titled as the “Capcom Pro Tour”, the league will be solely hosting (for now) Super Street Fighter 4: Arcade Edition until Ultra Street Fighter 4 arrives later this summer. Working with grass roots, trade shows, and online event coordinators, the Capcom Pro Tour will host 10 events per year, with each tournament winner eligible to compete within the Capcom Cup championship tournament this December. 6 other entries will be included in this list based on a select point system being introduced.
This is a fantastic step in the right direction for a struggling company. Still, until it gains enough traction and recognition in the fighting game community, EVO will remain the premiere fighting game event held each year.
Speaking of EVO, Super Smash Bros. Melee will also be making a triumphant return to the stage with the approval of parent company, Nintendo. Not only will they be allowed to host the game and stream it openly, but long standing North American league, Major League Gaming, will also be allowed to include the game on their pro circuits (which have been restricted due to Nintendo’s limitations on streaming their content). I believe this change was mainly due to the huge amount of community outcry over last year’s EVO debacle, where thousands of people petitioned to have Nintendo allow the game be streamed and played (it eventually was given permission: http://kotaku.com/nintendo-backs-down-allows-smash-bros-streaming-725940804). We wish all tournaments good luck with their newly found freedoms.
Microsoft Addresses Concerns with the Quality of ‘Games With Gold’
As the “console war” rages on, people have found a new front to attack on: the free games offered through premium memberships, particularly Microsoft’s “Games With Gold” program. This is a perk for all Xbox Live Gold Members who have the opportunity to download 2 select titles per month. The “select” part, however, is what some consumers aren’t very satisfied with. Many indie games like Shoot Many Robots (which we thoroughly enjoyed), were the norm of these offerings, which some people did not take well considering the large assortment of free and newer titles offered through Sony’s PlayStation Plus program.
During a Q&A session after the SXSW Gaming panel, Phil Spencer of Microsoft commented on the games being offered, some being many months or even years old. He wanted to reassure consumers that future games chosen for “Game With Gold” will be of a higher standard:
"One of our issues with Games with Gold — not 'issues,' but differences between the other system we get compared to, is the fact that with Games with Gold, you get to keep that game, regardless of whether you continue to subscribe," relayed Spencer, "And the business around Games with Gold, for us, is just fundamentally different from some of the other programs that are out there, which does put a different financial picture on a — you're gonna go buy a game that's brand new, the cost of putting that in, just to be kind of blunt about it."
Now, Spencer isn’t directly in charge of the team heading the program, but he has weighed in on a few of the first-party releases distributed through it. I believe he wants to see the quality improve, as he’s been attempting to work with them more to include titles many gamers want to see available. The main problem, however, is that Microsoft’s business model is inherently and fundamentally different from Sony’s:
"For us, in the long run, as an industry, giving away content like that is just ... I think there's some steps and some evolution of what Games with Gold or any of the other systems will go through to their full potential. You have things out there that are kind of bigger subscription services, where I get access to a lot of content. Games with Gold is kind of this step in the middle of, 'I get games, and how do I feel about those games."
Thus far, no official word of the program continuing on into Xbox One will occur, but Spencer did state that something about it will be announced “fairly soon”.
Xbox Gamer Finally Reaches 1 Million Gamerscore Milestone
For any of you achievement hunters out there looking for a challenge, could you reach 1 million gamerscore in your lifetime? Many would say: “HELL no!” This particular gamer, however, can proudly say that he has! Some of you might know him as Ray Cox, but for many of us, he goes by his now famous gamertag: Stallion83.
A true gamer, Cox made it his goal to reach 1 million gamerscore on the Xbox, which he finally did on March 13th. More fittingly, he finished his goal by playing one of the most trending games in the industry right now, Titanfall, streaming it to thousands of viewers via his Twitch channel. Microsoft once again congratulated him on his achievement, including a tweet from Major Nelson:
This recognition from Microsoft stands as one of many rewards for his dedication to the service, including his lifetime Xbox Live Gold membership he was presented with from the company last November. What did he have to say after all was said and done, you may ask? He exclaimed on his Twitter:
I can finally watch TV and movies again! You'll sacrifice everything if you want it bad enough.— Ray Cox IV (@Stallion83) March 13, 2014
Congratulations to you Ray on your achievement(s)! If the word “perseverance” had a face to it, it would be yours by far.