Game releases are getting too complicated

Dusty Ricketts

Taken as a whole, I much prefer today's video games to those that came out 10, 20 or 30 years ago. They control better, the storytelling has improved drastically and they look amazing.

One of the more recent changes in the industry that I'm not a fan of, though, is how game studios are releasing their biggest games nowadays.

A game used to come out on a certain date. You could buy it and start playing it, and continue to play it as much as you wanted or until Mom said it was time to go to bed.

Unfortunately, that's not the case any longer. Game releases have gotten a lot more complicated.

One of the biggest releases in early 2019 is "Anthem," the newest game from the "Mass Effect" developers at EA's BioWare studio. EA has made the game's release so complicated that it had to release a chart to show all the options.

"Anthem" comes out for everyone to play on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on Feb. 22. But if you play on PC and you're a subscriber of EA's $15-a-month Origin Access Premier service, you get full unlimited access to the game Feb. 15. If you're a subscriber of the basic Origin Access service, which is $5 a month and available on PC and Xbox One but not PS4, you also get to play "Anthem" on Feb. 15, but you'll be limited to only playing the game for 10 hours in that first week (after Feb. 22, the time limit restriction is removed).

I do miss the days when a game would release on a certain day and you knew you could pick it up and start playing it immediately.

Another problem with today's game releases is that developers continue to work on the game even after it's "finished." So before you're able to start playing that new game you just purchased, you'll have first download the day one patch. Sometimes the patch is small, just fixing last-minute bugs that popped up. Usually, it's a pretty sizable download. The exception to this trend is Nintendo, which, with a few exceptions, releases its games complete and don't require a game update before it can be played.

Dusty Ricketts is the editor of The Destin Log and The Walton Sun newspapers and can be reached at He is currently playing "Star Wars Battlefront 2" and "Friday the 13th: The Game." You can find him to play online through his PlayStation Network ID, DustRAG316.