As much as I love games I find that I never have time to actually sit down and play all the games I want to. You would think that because I help out with MobyGames I would spend my entire day playing games. I wish. Between MobyGames, my job and grad school my plate is pretty full. However after getting back from GDC I was pretty jazzed up about getting some gaming time in. I picked up The Outfit and Burnout: Revenge for Xbox 360. I really like them both. Yet when I started digging around for the credits for Burnout: Revenge I noticed EA did not include it in the manual. Not only that, you have to unlock the credits by finishing the game. If you have played any of the games in the Burnout Series you know how much time that takes. Is EA intentionally trying to make the credits hard to get?
I've noticed that EA makes it tough for us poor credit submitters. Actually, I've e-mailed different people within EA's organization several times asking for help with credits and have never gotten a response. I think credits should be listed in the manual and as a .txt file (or pdf) somewhere on the media.
Nowadays with teams being so big it's too expensive to add several pages to the manual just for credits
also in-game it's easier for them to update and make last minute changes to the list since the manual is usually printed long before the game code is done
Yeah, but making you finish the game? Come on.
If that's a upper management decision what can you do? They can choose not to give credit at all right
If it's the programmers... then they need to get their head on straight.
Besides, Nintendo has done that years right?
I work for them and even I have trouble getting final credits on games I'm leading the teams on :)
A lot of companies are now removing credits from manuals because they can save money on printing by saving those couple of pages. PC games are pretty easy to get as there is usually a credits text file hidden away within the install.
Yeah, Japanese companies are terrible for this. Usually, the credits will just roll once at the end of the game. And if you miss it, well, better hope you're in the mood for another playthrough. =)
How ironic that we're talking about the company here that, with their first games, put the names of the people on the front of the box and featured a photo and a short bio on the inside or in the manual.
Credits are not included in manuals unless it's a contractual requirement with the studio involved (at least at EA - and I'm fairly sure other publishers); it is, unsurprisingly, primarily down to page count cost; additional factors (that have already been mentioned) include it being easier all round to slot them into software (and less expensive) plus it cuts out the finicky, time-consuming business of having to format and proofread a hell of a lot of names and positions to slot into the back of a manual which can be on a tight schedule. I think that's all fair enough, but it's imperative credits should be included in software. They should be accessible through a Main menu at any stage; it's shameful if they aren't. I wasn't aware that any Burnout title necessitated unlocking its credits! What's all that about? Are publishers that afraid of their talent being poached? I wrote the Revenge manual! From memory I'm sure you can access credits through the Main menu. If not, I'll be having words. The talented folk at Criterion and EA who worked hard on that universally acclaimed game should have their names readily accessible.
Yeah. Burnout rocks. I've wasted way too much time on that game already.
Lol. Compare that to Keepsake (if I am remembering which game correctly), where you end up finding the credits not far into the game ... and it makes some funny comment along the lines of "who wants to read that stuff" or something like that. Heh.
I may be wrong about which game had that... I've played quite a few recently, but I think that's the right one.
Sucks, huh? Mitch Evans worked on Total Control Football for only a few months, but he worked his ass off. He didn't get credits though because the producer felt that it was not necessary to make changes to the credits list he had already compiled.
I put a cheat into Mars Taxi to show credits because there was no other place in the game (manual or otherwise) where they were supposed to be.
A bigger issue is actually HOW you are credited. In Gauntlet: Seven Sorrows, anybody who didn't stay until the Beta got "Special Thanks To" only - even people like Michael Cuevas, who worked on the game for two years. The IGDA is currently discussing a standardized way for crediting people, not unlike the movie industry. There is a lot of injustice happening there, and I hope the IGDA can do something.
And somebody mentioned Japanese developers: They are getting paranoid about crediting developers sometimes. I remember seeing a group picture of a development team somewhere - with the heads of the developers blurred out. They didn't want headhunters to identify the people and try to lure them away...
This is slightly off topic but...
I recently read an interview with two developers of Shadow of the Colossus. At the end of the interview, they were asked about the Nintendo Revolution and what kind of games they could imagine creating for it. There answer was (I'm paraphrasing): Since the system is not developed by Sony there is no need for us to think about that. Wow...
Yup - I do too. However, will it be compulsory for publishers and studios to sign up to a future IDGA agreement? If not, I fancy that it'll just slip by 'unnoticed' by the big players; it's in their interest not to publicise their in-house talent too enthusiastically. Since the games industry has grown to the Hollywood size it has, a little bit more regulation of this kind of thing wouldn't go amiss. However, the pace at which the industry has grown over recent years means that there's a general lack of unionization; the employee-side of the industry is slowly playing catchup while the employer-side has been exploiting the vacuum. (Look at the myriad of emloyee blogs over silly hours and rates of (non) overtime pay). Credit where credit's due. Talent should be celebrated and protected.
Matt Lord Wrote:
Hollywood had growing pains too. Back in the 1930s and 1940s, there were complaints about performers not being credited on films, which lead to the beginnings of the guilds and Motions Picture Academy... of course it wasn't until the 1950s or 1960s that you started seeing all of the crew names get credited as well. It's a slow process. And some would argue that this kind of regulation can get in the way of artistic vision if the rules are too strict. I suppose I'm just talking hypothetical, since I have no idea what this "Standardized way" would be, but it could easily dictate the style and size of font and etc which would disallow some of the neater effects used at times during credits.
On the other hand, some regulation is probably needed. One only has to look back to the 1980s at a time when quite a few games developed by "entertainment divisions" of other companies would not credit their employees. Heck, even on the Nintendo, a major hit console designed FOR games, the bulk of those games are without credits of any kind and it's not unheard of for employees to hide their names within the hex code, just so that it's somewhere.
It's not like this is really anything new. Credits in the manual isn't really standard, and most games put it at the end of the game. From my own experience it's seemed like EA games have an above average chance of having the credits in the manual, actually.
The ones that bug me, though, are when a manual takes a page to do credits, but only lists the localization team.
The actual conspiracy at foot here is many a EA big boss had their credits contributions rejected or WIPed back time and time again by MG approvers due to lacking supporting screenshots or one too many typo's (they're secretaries were working late).
So they came up with the idea "If we can't snag those MG contributions points, hell, no one can!"
Joshua J. Slone Wrote:
Yes, definitely - I've noticed that Sega and Namco in particular are notorious for this. Come on - people programmed and animated this game too, let's hear about them as well!
Ben K Wrote:
Bah, as a gamer I don't care who the creative team behind my favorite games are. Now, the PR people, that's interesting! =P