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Manipulative game monetization shows gamers no respect, says  Super Meat Boy  dev

Manipulative game monetization shows gamers no respect, says Super Meat Boy dev

May 7, 2012 | By Mike Rose

A large number of mobile and social gaming companies treat their customers with a complete lack of respect, with business tactics that are "a slap in the face to actual game design," says Super Meat Boy developer Edmund McMillen.

As part of a blog post discussing the upcoming mobile version of Super Meat Boy, co-creator McMillen discussed what he believes to be wrong with a large portion of mobile games at the moment, and how he plans to show respect to mobile players with his upcoming release.

"There is a whole shit load of wrong out there these days, from abusive and manipulative money making tactics, to flat out stealing," he says on the Super Meat Boy blog.

"To us the core of what is wrong with the mobile platform is the lack of respect for players; It really seems like a large number of these companies out there view their audience as dumb cattle who they round up, milk and then send them on their way feeling empty or at times violated."

He continues, "There is an ongoing theme these days to use a very basic video game shell and hang a 'power up carrot' in front of the player. The player sees this carrot, and wants it! All the player needs to do is a few very rudimentary repetitious actions to attain it, and once they get to it, another drops down and asks them to do more."

"But then the catch... instead of achieving these 'goals' by running on the treadmill, you can instead just pay a single dollar and you instantly get to your goal! Better yet pay $10 and unlock all your goals without even having to ever play the game!"

This approach, says McMillen, is one that Team Meat is looking to stay well clear of with the mobile Super Meat Boy, "not only by not manipulating [players], but also by understanding they want a real challenge and they want a real sense of fulfillment."

"Words cannot express how fucking wrong and horrible this is, for games, for gamers and for the platform as a whole," he continues. "This business tactic is a slap in the face to actual game design and embodies everything that is wrong with the mobile/casual video game scene."

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