The Dord of Darien

Musings from the Mayor of the Internet

Shadow Broken, you mean

So Lair of the Shadow Broker’s out. You played that? I haven’t.

I mean, I bought it and installed it, but I’m refusing to play it tonight, because I need to get to bed early, and if I start in on that I’ll never stop. So I’m waiting until tomorrow to help my crazy blue lady smack her bitch up.

But you know what else was a fun game? Trying to buy Lair of the Shadow Broker. Obscure and untrustworthy gaming news site has a big splash up that says "Lair of the Shadow Broker Now Available," which, if you were not on your guard, could fool you into believing that Lair of the Shadow Broker is now available. Trusting soul that I am, I clicked on the "purchase now" link and got taken to the Mass Effect 2 DLC list, which contained seven things that were not Lair of the Shadow Broker and zero things that were.

(update: the top entry now says "IGN gived Lair of the Shadowbroker 9.5/10," thereby continuing the run of high-quality correctness)

Come to find out — after like fifteen minutes of trying different things — Bioware did launch Lair of the Shadow Broker, but then pulled it back for the non-trivial fault of it didn’t work. So, great, I’m glad they have their crack team of engineers trying to figure out why they posted an installer that was apparently all zeroes instead of one that contained data, but wouldn’t it be nice if they spared one crack engineer or two and they maybe updated the front page to say so? Or took down the big "CLICK HEAR FOR GAEM" link? Yes it would.

I guess they fixed that eventually, since I bought the thing, though my adventure was far from over! See, in the real world — which is where Derek Jeter parks his car when he’s shtupping Minka Kelly — we can buy downloadables by going to the publisher’s website and, like, buying them. Well, no, actually, in the modern real world, we can just press the "buy DLC" button on the game’s goddamn Steam listing, but I guess Bioware didn’t want to sully the gritty realism of its ridiculous space opera with that sort of futuristic bullshit, so you have to go to the web site. But did you think it would be as simple as pressing the "buy DLC" button on the web site?

See, you can’t buy shit from Bioware using your pedestrian "money." "Money" is not a form of currency accepted here, plebeian. You must purchase the DLC for 800 "Bioware points," which, in turn, you purchase using your filthy stolen money on another page entirely. And did you then make the similar amateur mistake of assuming that 800 Bioware points would cost $8.00 money dollars? Because it does not. It costs $10.00 money dollars, for some reason stuck halfway between "bullshit" and "satanic ritual." Oh, pardon me — $10 plus state sales tax, because apparently a "Bioware point" is an actual good or service. Also, I guess Canadian game developer Bioware has some type of office in the state of Massachusetts that I’m not aware of which causes its tangible good or service that is a "Bioware point" to be subject to state sales taxes. So the total cost of 800 Bioware points is $10.63. And I would like to note that I paid more in taxes on those 800 Bioware points than I did for Mass Effect 2 itself, which was retailed by the non-morons at Valve who didn’t try to charge me for state sales tax I’m not obligated to pay.

Here’s another fun fact: the reason I never played the Overlord DLC was because I saw the 560 Bioware points price tag and said "oh, it’s only five bucks? I’ll get that," and then found out that it was actually like seven and a half bucks. Now, I know, that’s pretty minor; what actually pissed me off about it is that — for some fucking reason, and I swear to God I am not making this up — you have to purchase Bioware points in multiples of 800, which would leave me with Overlord DLC and 240 useless spare points.

Whenever I’m confronted with something that doesn’t seem to make sense, I turn to the only two sources of information I trust — Oprah Winfrey and Wolfram Alpha. You can see for yourself what Stephen Wolfram’s amazing computational knowledge engine had to say for itself, but, as for Oprah, I’ll have to give you a screenshot of her reply.

So I’d like to thank Bioware for the value-added exciting pregame. It’s sort of like the Portal 2 ARG, but nobody made a wiki for it, and I had to solve the whole thing by myself. Tune in tomorrow for some senseless bitching about the actual game! For tonight, well, VVVVVV just launched on Steam also, finally, so maybe I’ll play that.

September 8th, 2010 Posted by | Games | no comments

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