Our newest comic is available here, regarding the blogger that Nintendo fired recently. As usual, Gabriel and I disagree absolutely on virtually every point of this discussion, my own perspective favoring greater liberty while he presents a naked defense of fascism. The two universal axioms we were both able to agree upon were that:
1. Contract work is extremely volatile. I had a friend do tech work through contractors locally, through places hooked in to all the biggest companies under exclusive contracts, and they're under no compulsion to tell you why you need to put all your shit in a box and leave the facility in ten minutes. And once you piss these places off, it follows you around for years, like some spectral wolf. He does his tech support for the United States Army now.
2. You are not "posting anonymously" if you use a fake last name and have pictures of yourself on your blog. That is not "anonymous." That is "I dare you to find me, and then, having found me, terminate my employment." You should not expect GloboMegaCorp to "grok" participation culture like blogs. Also, you shouldn't expect them to know a word like "grok."
MTV's Stephen Totilo (along with Newsweek's N'Gai Croal) are probably our best placed agents in the otherwise bleak houses of the mainstream media outlets. As a jump off from this week's anxious Bungie/MS speculation, Stephen goes through a quick list of the companies he believes are well-suited to work the rich fields of the Halo franchise. I'd assumed that we'd be of one mind on them, and many of his suggestions are solid, but the two best candidates are nowhere to be seen.
2k Boston/Australia - that is to say, Irrational Games - could produce the most incredible science fiction this side of System Shock with that franchise. They're already comfortable with the hardware, they're incredible storytellers, and plus, they have literally already made a game where a cyborg and an A.I. fight a collective intellect on a spaceship. Quite simply, there's no company in the universe more qualified.
My second pick is BioWare. God only knows if they'd ever work on someone else's intellectual property again, but I think this is a sandbox few could resist. Clearly, it would be a very different Halo than we're used to - though (in the manner of Halo Wars) their approach could easily coexist with a more traditional title. Of course, Microsoft should only flip this switch when they're prepared to make a Halo game as epic as their advertising campaigns.
We'll be gone for a few days, mostly over the weekend, until we return at some apocalyptic hour Wednesday morning. There will be no interruption of service over this period - indeed, since everything must be slotted in advance, service should be substantially improved over the usual. Monday and Wednesday will see two articles go up from denizens of the games industry. I'd hoped to have one more ready to go, and if it arrives by the time I get back I'll make sure it goes up for Friday. I firmly believe that these pieces will improve your life in some way.