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Alex Beckers
Consumer technology project manager. General fan of life.
Consumer technology project manager. General fan of life.

Alex's posts

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I cannot broadcast this loudly enough: Significant new website vulnerability. At least one of your accounts is compromised, I can almost guarantee that.

Thoughts on Valve's recent series of announcements regarding SteamOS, Steambox PCs, and their new gaming controller... (originally posted on Broken Forum):

I have this weird analogy in my head... all the stuff that PC games on Steam already did -- 360 controller support, standard K+M controls, basically all the PC-centric stuff -- was painting in broad strokes. Now they're adding in piece-by-piece the stuff to paint the edges and the corners. Big screen mode if you don't have K+M in your living room. Steambox if you don't want to buy an existing dedicated PC gaming rig for the living room, and SteamOS to run it. Now Steam controller if you want to play K+M games in your living room, which makes big screen mode less important.

This all feels less like an "all-in-one" offensive like XBone or PS4 and more like a toolkit that gamers can use to build the living room gaming experience they've always wanted, brought to you by Valve.

Considering how all of these parts are hackable and customizeable, and how Valve has talked about removing the internal oversight barrier to entry for games and making everything more community-driven, I think we're going to see a future where one gamer's Steam experience can vary quite wildly from another's. In terms of platform, gaming environment, control scheme -- everything. It's like Steam is becoming a meta-console that you can use to build whatever console you want.

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Underestimating the time/resources required to do localization right is pretty consistent across the industry.

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So, interesting news. As of yesterday my time at Magic Pixel Games has unfortunately come to an end. There's no bad feelings on either side and wish everyone at the studio the best of luck. 

The timing may turn out to be serendipitous... Just one month ago I finished my Masters in Business Administration, and I was starting to think about ways of applying that knowledge to the video game industry. It strikes me that not many people working in the finance side in game publishing have any hands-on development experience. Could be opportunities there. If any of you reading this have any thoughts on that topic please drop me a line.

For reference, my LinkedIn profile is at and my resume can be found at

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My summary of the PS4 announcement: It's the PS3 but with more power, better online social, and many of the PS3 annoyances removed. That's the good.

The bad is that this doesn't do anything to fix the problems with console gaming. If anything it exacerbates them. The number of developers you need to pay to take advantage of that power means that you really need to make a hit or else you're not going to be profitable. Console gaming will keep being a hit-driven risk-averse market, with real innovation -- and a lot of gamers -- going to mobile devices. 

Quote from Ctrl-Alt-Del about Destiny: "There are a lot of expectations riding on this for them. I'll admit to being excited about what they can do without Microsoft looking over their shoulder screaming 'GIVE US OUR NEXT CASH COW FRANCHISE SEQUEL!'"

Yeah, because Activision would NEVER do that.

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Great review of Stick to It on Kotaku!

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Our first iPhone game is LIVE on the App Store! And it's * FREE * for three days! Check it out!
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