Some news from the anticipated game Watch_dogs recently hit the web, with the game’s release date, the delayed release of the Wii U version and the game came under criticism for having the in-game engine and environments looking nothing like the previous gaming build that was shown off on stage at E3 two years ago.
Apparently this technique is called Bullshot. Bullshot, according to Urban Dictionary is a screenshot fabricated by a company to misrepresent the graphics of a game. While this is not the first time I have seen this happen this is the first time I heard that word being used.
Far Cry 3, Uncharted, Steel Battalion Heavy Armor and most noticeable the flopped Rambo game are all perfect examples of gaming companies modifying their game’s image when releasing first looks screenshots of their games.
And while everyone in the gaming industry uses the Bullshot technique during the first previews and at the various trade shows, the question is should it be considered illegal for false advertising?
On one hand the game companies uses this method to build hype for the game and show the ideal end image of a product that is not completed yet. And I am willing to give them the benefit of the doubt that some of these graphical touches might have been dropped for the sake of finishing the product, and dealing with the graphical crunch from the limitations of the consoles. At the time Watch_Dogs developers did not have access (or the ability to publicly show off) the PlayStation 4 or the Xbox One at 2012’s E3 so they had to resort to using a PC device to run their product.
But on the other consumer friendly hand…it could be argued that this is the gaming companies lying and misleading the paying consumers by manipulating the advertised image of a game to look better than the finished product,
A common phrase I use when talking about these issues but this is an issue that videogames have brought up and needs to be set a precedent for rest of the entertainment world, no other media does uses this technique (and if they do they do not do it as obviously and frequently). A few weeks ago Marvel released their first look at their the Guardians of the Galaxy and you can bet your bottom dollar that those clips or the CGI quality of those clips will be used in the movie despite the overall quality of the rest of the movie, same goes with comic books and T.V series.
With that in mind I want to bring this question to you, What do you think about the gaming industry using Bullshot option when showing off their games at trade shows or press releases? Has the bullshot process gone too far that we, the consumers, should lobby for legal action to stop companies from continuing to do this?
And where is should the line of Bullshotting be drawn? Should it include cutscenes? the prerendered videos of the gameplay at the trade shows or should it just be defined as the advertised ‘in game engine’ live game-play that gaming companies show on stage?
Leave a comment down below on what you think, I would love to hear what other people’s opinions about this process.
Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays