Counterpoint: The new Command & Conquer and Star Trek mobile games are shit


Yep! I don’t think it’s required to buy IAPs but they are appearing in the game about as fast as new waves of enemies. Heroes, gems, etc. it’s probably like previous kingdom rush games, but maybe a little more monetizy.

Super ironic too since the main plotline, such is there is, you play as the bad guy who is upset that his evil palace got turned into some sort of for-profit amusement park and is out for, well, vengeance. I don’t consider that a spoiler since it is literally the intro before you even play the first map.


That was a great article, and needed to be said. Also, very brave to talk about the struggles with your kid. I am glad y’all recognized the problem, I imagine a lot of parents have not.


Awesome post! Thank you for such a great piece of writing on this subject. I can understand your hesitation as you were about to publish but we’re glad you hit the button.

The advent of F2P was one of the factors that made me turn my back on making games. It wasn’t the only one (insane working hours and having less and less input are just a couple of the others, there are plenty) but it was certainly one of the nails in the coffin.

I try to buy good premium titles whenever I can. In fact to my shame a lot of the games you cite as being worthy alternatives to F2P above I own and haven’t made the time to play but I guess an ever increasing backlog is the fate of many gamers.

p.s. Silverfab, no need to apologise for your English. I wish I could write any foreign language 1/10 as well as you wrote above, with or without auto correct!


Great article. It’s as if you looked into my (and judging by the comments here, not just mine) own thoughts and put them onto paper. Much respect for your real-life honesty too.; it’s rare to read an article on a game site (though not that rare on Stately Play, to be honest) that deserves a much wider audience, given the social strands of cause and effect it weaves together.
Excellent stuff.


Just … well done. Many more eloquent replies up the thread that I will not try (and fail) to augment in any meaningful manner.

Just … well done :+1:


Allow me to add my kudos!

I wish I had that kind of courage.



Thanks for sharing about your son. I know that takes courage, and we need a periodic reminder about how F2P as a trend is not healthy for gaming as a hobby. Companies are putting game skins on casinos, and then heavily marketing them. As you note, it’s geared people prone to addiction, which makes funding continued development on the backs of whales exploitive and gross.

Personal aside: have any other parents run into an educational game called Prodigy? It’s lite MMO where kids do math to accomplish attacks and such. My son’s elementary school has gone all-in on this thing. I’m all about making learning fun, but they put up roadblocks for items and pets unless kids become members at $9/month or $60/year. Ugh. I know they have to keep the servers on, but I feel blindsided by the school.


My sons are into Prodigy. We ended up buying memberships for them and calling them an early Christmas gift, but I was also pretty irritated with the pricing.


Yeah, my kids haven’t mentioned seeing it at school, but I was volunteering in another school last year and saw it there (it was available if they finished other work early). Seemed particularly harsh in a poorer neighborhood. It did seem pretty good for an edutainment game, but when the world contains Calculords and DragonBox, that didn’t strike me as quite enough to justify the price.


As @Private_Prinny posted over in the GOTY thread, thought it more appropriate for my comment on his post over in this thread:

Alas, I agree, which is one of the reasons I’m getting a Switch, for portable gaming, this Christmas.

It does appear that Nintendo has swerved hard into the mobile microtransactions for their phone games, they’ve abandoned the Super Mario Run premium game model, and “progressed” from monetized Fire Emblem Heroes and Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp to the polished, non-Nintendo character based, Dragalia Lost. And, Nintendo is leveraging the monetization expertise of Cygames with Dragalia Lost, it seems. :slightly_frowning_face:

Similarly, Blizzard has released the premium Diablo III for Switch, but with phones it will be Diablo Immortal where they are using an outside studio, NetEase. Blizzard would not discuss their monetization plans for Diablo Immortal during their major BlizzCon announcement, but NetEase appears to have a poor reputation where monetization is concerned. And, Activision-Blizzard did not spend $5.9 billion for King, to transition their company away from Candy Crush monetization.

For a premium Diablo portable experience, looks like Switch is the best option.

Into the Breach being ported to Switch was good news, but last I heard it was not optimistic that it would make it to iOS or Android. Another data point that supports picking up a Switch for this Christmas, for premium portable gaming.


Despite my article bemoaning the fact that my fat fingers struggle to make the Switch do what I want, I’ve been playing the hell out of Civ 6 on the Switch lately and it’s fantastic. It’s so awesome to sit on the couch and play Civ VI on a big screen TV. Playing on the go is good, too, but, wow, there’s something awesome about relaxing on the couch with a cup of tea and listening to Sean Bean spout off quotes about Naval Tradition and Ballistics.

(The point of this was to agree with Falkenstein…I think the future of AAA mobile games is the Switch and less the iPad. There would need to be a sea change in the App Store for Apple to turn iOS into a serious gaming platform at this point. I still look forward to good games for the phone/tablet, but I’m not expecting big games to land there, where the Switch at least has a chance. XCOM 2 for iPad? I doubt it, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see it on the Switch in 2019, for example)


The Switch is awesome. That said, nothing will ever beat a phone for me simply for the fact that I always have it with me. At work, the grocery store, my kids’ various swim/piano/etc. lessons; no matter where I am, I can get a game in. Plus, with all the great board games with asynch, I’ve got something running at all times.

I will say, though, that I am wishing I had brought my Switch and Smash Bros. to work today…


Excuse me a minute, my pants just got tight for some reason…

eta: I’ll probably end up picking up a Switch at some point, but I’m waiting to see if they release new hardware next year…


I felt the same way, I completely understand, but I’m taking the plunge this Christmas. Hopefully any software investments will translate to compatibility with new hardware, and my understanding of the rumor started by the Wall Street Journal is that it would be more of an enhanced version of the current Switch.

Which I’m all for a “pro” version of the Switch. Battle Chasers: Nightwar is on my short list of planned initial Switch games, and I saw this interview with THQ Nordic about it and their Darksiders games, especially their recently released Darksiders III: THQ Nordic on Switch: “It’s a Bit Sad” that Nintendo Didn’t Release It With “More Beefy Hardware”


Some of this is dependent on the devs, though. I don’t know what the difficulty trade-offs are for developing on the Switch vs. ipad, much less porting something from PC to one of those over the other. And there’s also the competition aspect; there are about 8 zillion apps released in any given week on ios, with only a handful every month on switch.

I think if I were Nintendo, I would create a very UI-friendly set of kits or tools for devs to help them along in development or porting to the console, offer some live online assistance, maybe even host workshops during the year. Essentially, do all the things apple doesn’t do.

Of course, @Mirefox has a good point about the ease of having games on your phone. That will never go away, I think. Coming in 2019? SwitchPhone! You’re welcome, Nintendo. Make checks payable to Stately Play.


Now, here’s something I can get behind…


I haven’t heard anything, but from the reception Civ VI is getting on mobile vs. Switch, I’m guessing Aspyr (I think they did the port) is wondering why they have to do the whole “download free, then buy via IAP” nonsense and still getting killed for asking $60 compared to Switch where it’s, here’s an AAA title that costs $60 and no one bats an eye.


The question, though, revolves around sales. Is Civ VI doing well on Switch? ios? Comparatively?


Good question. I’m probably overthinking it because I tend to react more negatively to entitled jags complaining on the internet about something not being free.


Was the Switch version announced prior to the release of the iOS version? My hazy impression is that anyone who purchased the Switch version likely already picked it up on another platform, and was just a big fan who wanted to take advantage of what the Switch offers, with the possible exception of Android gamers? :thinking: