Random Babblings: Save the Rainforests!

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posted 2/4/2003 by Charlie Sinhaseni
other articles by Charlie Sinhaseni
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There’s a dilemma that has been plaguing the world for quite some time. Dozens of acres of the rainforest are bulldozed every year; much of the fallen timber goes towards the making of paper. Activists have worked long and hard to preserve the natural environment through protests and petitions, but it’s all for naught. Want to know how to save the rainforests? Conserve paper. And where’s a better place to start than with computer gaming? In case you haven’t noticed, there has been a huge influx of titles shipping with cheesy paper cases as opposed to the hard jewel cases that we have come to know and love. Judging by how well these titles are selling, I’d say that a large amount of the bulldozed timber goes towards the making of these flimsy excuses for CD houses. There is absolutely no reason why I should spend $50 on a game (which is far overpriced by the way) only to have to shill out more cash for a set of jewel cases so that I can protect my investment.

The idea of overcharging someone for a game and not having the decency to deliver it in a plastic jewel case is insulting. It’s insulting to those who bust their butts every week just to earn enough extra cash to purchase a game, it’s insulting to those who support their favorite companies and it’s especially insulting to me, a guy who has seen the gaming industry go through a serious moral degradation in the recent years. While earnings and profits are at an all time high, production values and customer loyalty is at an all time low. Sure they can overcharge us for their high-profile titles (remember at this time last year, a high-profile PC title actually cost about $39.99) but they don’t have the decency to deliver it in a suitable package? This is especially painful for someone that has followed a company like Epic from the days of their shareware all the way up to their recent release, Unreal Tournament 2003.



ARGH!!


Imagine my surprise as I opened up the box to discover a jewel case sized booklet and three paper sleeves. So what are they telling me here? That I need to supply my own jewel case if I want to be able to hang onto this title? My jaw hit the floor; the company that I had supported for 10+ years had given me the proverbial swift kick to the nuts. Even Jazz Jackrabbit came in a suitable case, and that only cost me $20. Perhaps most insulting is that the installation program for the game commands me to enter the CD-key on the “back of the jewel case.” Oh wait, there is no jewel case, so where do they print it? On the back of the freaking manual. Whoops Apparently, even the guys who code the installation program weren’t aware of this heinous act and were expecting much more of their company.
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