Remember when stores had shelves like this

NeghVar

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Remember the days of boxed PC games. A shelf like this would wrap around an entire GameStop, Electronics Botique, or Babbages. Best Buy, CompUSA, Incredible Universe, and Fry's would have large areas of their stores dedicated to boxed PC games and apps. Nowadays you'd be lucky to find the latest triple-A games on an endcap. Its all download now.
https://annebras.nl/pcking/Media/worlds-largest-boxed-pc-game-collection-anne-bras.jpg
I tried attaching the image to the post, but It would not show its true resolution. Use the link to see the full resolution image worlds-largest-boxed-pc-game-collection-anne-bras.jpg
 
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NeghVar

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Yep, and those games are just download keys. Thanks Valve and steam for ruining physical copies! /s
It was inevitable. If not Steam, some other company would do the same thing. Less packaging means less cost and less trash. PDF manuals (if any). And of course, higher bandwidth allowing easy downloading meant no space to be occupied in a store. But also think about all the indie games that have come out via Steam and other such platforms. To costly to get shelf space in a store
 

GoldenTiger

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It was inevitable. If not Steam, some other company would do the same thing. Less packaging means less cost and less trash. PDF manuals (if any). And of course, higher bandwidth allowing easy downloading meant no space to be occupied in a store. But also think about all the indie games that have come out via Steam and other such platforms. To costly to get shelf space in a store
Oh, I know. :) I was saying it in jest. EDIT: Just don't take away my bluray disc's!
 

NeghVar

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Oh, I know. :) I was saying it in jest. EDIT: Just don't take away my bluray disc's!
For a few years, I insisted on physical copies because I was so fixed on having a physical copy so that they cannot cut me off from what I purchased. But I gave in when I no longer had a choice.
 

Comixbooks

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Walmart still has a dedicated PC gaming section but the boxes got alot smaller I picked up Redneck Rampage before I got a job there and Dark Age of Camelot a few times because the of the DLCs.
 

Mchart

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It was inevitable. If not Steam, some other company would do the same thing. Less packaging means less cost and less trash. PDF manuals (if any). And of course, higher bandwidth allowing easy downloading meant no space to be occupied in a store. But also think about all the indie games that have come out via Steam and other such platforms. To costly to get shelf space in a store
The crappy part now is that Steam has become way too bloated. I used to like it for how simple it was, but over the past 4-6 years it's become a bloated monster. I honestly don't even like purchasing games on it anymore unless I have to.
 

auntjemima

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The crappy part now is that Steam has become way too bloated. I used to like it for how simple it was, but over the past 4-6 years it's become a bloated monster. I honestly don't even like purchasing games on it anymore unless I have to.
What makes it bloated? I rarely use it. By rarely I mean I have purchased a single game and another time I searched for another.

I went to the search box, typed in the name, selected the game and paid.

Maybe there are bloated features I don't know about.
 

Mchart

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What makes it bloated? I rarely use it. By rarely I mean I have purchased a single game and another time I searched for another.

I went to the search box, typed in the name, selected the game and paid.

Maybe there are bloated features I don't know about.
Over the years they've added a lot, and it's slowed it down in terms of launching it or even changing tabs within the app. In the past it was literally just the store page to buy stuff, and the simple list of games.

Now even the list of games is bloated where it has to load all that web content, and this just generally slows things down if you don't have the best internet connection or their servers are being hammered (Which happens frequently).

It also has a crap ton of bloat behind the scenes since it has all that streaming/capture/remote play bloat going on.

I wish they'd let people download a lightweight version of the client that removes all the newer crap and basically just makes it operate like the old client.
 

Denpepe

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What makes it bloated? I rarely use it. By rarely I mean I have purchased a single game and another time I searched for another.
For me the bloated part is the amount of games, if you want to browse around to find a game you need luck to fall on something interesting. They have over 30k games and most of it is shovelware or reskins. I put everything i'm vaguiely interested in on my wishlist so whjen there is a sale I can just go by that list iso browsing trough a crapton of indie titles.

But if you know what you want sure it's fine
 

Zepher

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Over the years they've added a lot, and it's slowed it down in terms of launching it or even changing tabs within the app. In the past it was literally just the store page to buy stuff, and the simple list of games.

Now even the list of games is bloated where it has to load all that web content, and this just generally slows things down if you don't have the best internet connection or their servers are being hammered (Which happens frequently).

It also has a crap ton of bloat behind the scenes since it has all that streaming/capture/remote play bloat going on.

I wish they'd let people download a lightweight version of the client that removes all the newer crap and basically just makes it operate like the old client.
like this from 2004?
steam-games-list-2004.jpg
 

Susquehannock

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I can download a 100GB game faster than my DVD drive could read the 14 DVD's.
Not sure how fast a 50 or 100GB BD Rom would go though.
Thumb drives are cheap now. Give me one in a box, and some artwork like the old days. And no online launchers required. Whole thing has become so convoluted. Not everyone has giga interwebs. Or even broadband for that matter.
 

Armenius

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I can download a 100GB game faster than my DVD drive could read the 14 DVD's.
Not sure how fast a 50 or 100GB BD Rom would go though.
The fastest read speed of Blu-ray drives on the market is 432 Mbps (12x). The read speed in the PS5 is 216 Mbps (6x) for comparison. It would be better for games to be distributed on USB thumb drives since they're not much more expensive than Blu-ray discs in bulk. USB 3.1 Gen 1 is over 10 times faster.
 

pendragon1

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a long, long time ago....



Over the years they've added a lot, and it's slowed it down in terms of launching it or even changing tabs within the app. In the past it was literally just the store page to buy stuff, and the simple list of games.
lol isnt that what a bunch complain about with epic "it doesnt have enough stuff". one of the reason i like it, and free stuff but thats another thread...
 

Aireoth

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What makes it bloated? I rarely use it. By rarely I mean I have purchased a single game and another time I searched for another.

I went to the search box, typed in the name, selected the game and paid.

Maybe there are bloated features I don't know about.
Somewhere circa 2017 steam decided to revamp its UI and took its ques from the mobile market place. They added a bunch of junk like tiles, box art, revamped their store front, added voice chat (and largely borked the friend and steam chat functions for a while). The entire time expanding its footprint on system resources.

Now there is a crowd of people that say 'hey we have the resources to spare, who cares about a bigger foot print' but their just rewarding lazy and ineffecient design. That lazy design makes it slower to respond, and more tempermental than it ever was.

Steam mid 2010s was the best steam, it was unobtrusive, easy to navigate, and functioned well. These days it seems evert other update they break the friends list.

Not to mention the steam points store just turn into a bunch of tumbler level junk.
 

Jonnycat99

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I remember when you would browse software (not necessarily games) at your local b&m store, and the boxes would be heavy, because there was a book inside that functioned as the user manual. You would buy the box, go home, and kick back in your comfy chair with the book to get an overview of the program, or take it wherever you wanted to go to learn a thing or two. This was really handy so that you wouldn't be tied to the computer when you wanted to look something up.
 

Pringle

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I remember when you would browse software (not necessarily games) at your local b&m store, and the boxes would be heavy, because there was a book inside that functioned as the user manual. You would buy the box, go home, and kick back in your comfy chair with the book to get an overview of the program, or take it wherever you wanted to go to learn a thing or two. This was really handy so that you wouldn't be tied to the computer when you wanted to look something up.
I used to help my dad out at his old shipping store as a kid. I was really sick one day, so he had to take me with him for the day and spend it in a sleeping bag in the back.

On the way home, he stopped off at a Best Buy and picked up Max Payne for me. It was a 45 minute drive home, and I spent the entirety of it transfixed on the manual, box art, screenshots, and the fucking mousepad.

Good times :)
 

AlphaQup

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I still have quite a few of my old boxes stashed away in my closet (hl2 orange box, diablo 2 + LOD, etc) and now that you mention it, I kind of would like to display them alongside my current retro collection.

My cousin passed away almost a year ago, and my aunt actually kept all the original boxes + games + manuals for almost all of snes games so i ended up with some duplicates (been rebuying a lot of the older snes and n64 titles i once had), but i off-handidly search around ebay from time to time and snag a box here and there if its not horribly priced:

20220116_195436.jpg


I love the old box art, remember opening half of them on christmas/birthdays, sitting in the gaming isles (both pc and older consoles, id kill for my old SW Dark Forces, Max Payne and the likes retail boxes...) reading every box front and back while my mom shopped...

Ah... simpler times... :D

Edit: i felt inspired to lightly dig:

20220116_202128.jpg
 
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matt167

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Yes. I even remember into the mid 2010's that Office Max had a full isle of software and games, and most stores even had a 4 sided metal stand that was about 4-6' square that had cheaper games on. It was great because it was generally $10 and under.

I was 11 when DN3D came out and my dad had got the shareware version at a computer show ( another bygone era ). I had begged my mom on every grocery trip to get the Atomic Edition for me which was at the local Walmart. I managed to get her to buy Need For Speed II for me ( still have it ). I think that is the only boxed game I bought off the shelf in the 90's hayday. I have NR 2003 and an original release of Doom 3, I bought when I was able to generate enough of my own money

Much of my game purchases as a kid were at the dollar store, where older dos games were marketed by a company called SJT on floppy discs sold in baggies. And they were not sold as a set. If you bought a game that needed 2 disks, you had to find both disks on the tree style rack. If the second, third, fourth disk was not there, you had to come back after restocking day and hope it was there, but also the stock seemed to randomly rotate. I remember needing to come back to the store a few times to obtain disk 2 for Zone Raiders (
 

scojer

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Over the past year or so I've been picking up old games from thrift stores lately, only ones that don't require online activation though. I've seen a ton of copies of WoW and Sims 4, and a handful of Orange boxes, which I won't pick up.
The ones I have picked up I can fill up maybe two shelves, maybe.
 

WilyKit

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Digital is superior in nearly every way, except for the thrill. buying a new game was an event for me. Going to the store, browsing the isles, Checking out the art, reading the back of the box. Opening it, hearing the disk drive read the disk. Watching the progress bar slowly reach 100%

The whole process was just a lot more satisfying. Now when I purchase a game I check to see how much of my gigabit pipe I’m using. That’s my thrill.
 

WilyKit

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I used to help my dad out at his old shipping store as a kid. I was really sick one day, so he had to take me with him for the day and spend it in a sleeping bag in the back.

On the way home, he stopped off at a Best Buy and picked up Max Payne for me. It was a 45 minute drive home, and I spent the entirety of it transfixed on the manual, box art, screenshots, and the fucking mousepad.

Good times :)
I still have that mouse pad!
 

auntjemima

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Why? Designers cannot provide a game that plays as is anymore?
No, they certainly cannot. Games used to come in a cartridge with no option for patches ... Now they release trash and patch it constantly.

Although, if you consider the amount of stuff that goes into games these days and the pressure to put games out, incomplete or complete, it makes sense.
 

Armenius

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No, they certainly cannot. Games used to come in a cartridge with no option for patches ... Now they release trash and patch it constantly.

Although, if you consider the amount of stuff that goes into games these days and the pressure to put games out, incomplete or complete, it makes sense.
Cartridge games still received updates. The developers would fix bugs and the publisher would distribute the newer copies to supersede the old ones. Unfortunately there was no visibility to the buyer prior to purchase as to which version you were buying except in certain cases (budget labeling, etc.). They even had mail campaigns for more serious issues where people could mail their busted version of the game back to the publisher to get the newer, updated one.

It certainly wasn't as common as it is today, but let's not pretend that games delivered on cartridge were impervious to bugs and glitches.
 
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vegeta535

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Cartridge games still received updates. The developers would fix bugs and the publisher would distribute the newer copies to supersede the old ones. Unfortunately there was no visibility to the buyer prior to purchase as to which version you were buying except in certain cases (budget labeling, etc.). They even had mail campaigns for more serious issues where people could mail they're busted version of the game back to the publisher to get the newer, updated one.

It certainly wasn't as common as it is today, but let's not pretend that games delivered on cartridge were impervious to bugs and glitches.
Watching a lot of speeds shows you how glitchy and broken a lot of old cartridge games were.
 

auntjemima

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Cartridge games still received updates. The developers would fix bugs and the publisher would distribute the newer copies to supersede the old ones. Unfortunately there was no visibility to the buyer prior to purchase as to which version you were buying except in certain cases (budget labeling, etc.). They even had mail campaigns for more serious issues where people could mail their busted version of the game back to the publisher to get the newer, updated one.

It certainly wasn't as common as it is today, but let's not pretend that games delivered on cartridge were impervious to bugs and glitches.
But comparing something that was RARE to every release on PC since 2010 is silly. You could buy the first version of a game and beat it on a cartridge console, and I'm referring to NES and up.

The game wouldn't constantly crash on release day, or freeze or have missing content, shit textures unless you downloaded their 400000gb proper texture pack

It isn't comparable, at all.
 

MrGuvernment

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It was inevitable. If not Steam, some other company would do the same thing. Less packaging means less cost and less trash. PDF manuals (if any). And of course, higher bandwidth allowing easy downloading meant no space to be occupied in a store. But also think about all the indie games that have come out via Steam and other such platforms. To costly to get shelf space in a store
Technically no, the cost was shifted to Infrastructure and other resources required to host all those downloads and everything that goes along with it. But agree, downloadable games opened the market to everyone.
 

AceGoober

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I remember the times when GameSpot had every new game imaginable for PC and Consoles. Shelves upon Shelves of games. Seems like a distant memory now.
 
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From a waste perspective, I'm ok with digital delivery. The art, disc and package were cool and all but at what landfill cost. I am still staunchly against proprietary launchers and DRM though, the digital download should be a purely standalone game with optional internet connectivity.

Thumb drives are cheap now. Give me one in a box, and some artwork like the old days. And no online launchers required. Whole thing has become so convoluted. Not everyone has giga interwebs. Or even broadband for that matter.
With supply chain hacks seemingly a daily occurrence now, I would be really paranoid about sticking random USB drives in any of my machines. Content delivery over the wire can of course be infected as well. Just slapping usb drives in my machine seems way worse.
 

Comixbooks

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Remember when store shelves looked like this?

View attachment 4334312,000 × 1,500
I clean those things now I have to take everything off the shelf fill up this Green Machine pressure washer spray it down then suck up the water. I attempted to clean the Hot Dog wall last night with limited success becuse the salt burned it'self into the metal shelves.
I probably handled 800 packages of Hot Dogs last night.
 

NeghVar

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I remember when you would browse software (not necessarily games) at your local b&m store, and the boxes would be heavy, because there was a book inside that functioned as the user manual. You would buy the box, go home, and kick back in your comfy chair with the book to get an overview of the program, or take it wherever you wanted to go to learn a thing or two. This was really handy so that you wouldn't be tied to the computer when you wanted to look something up.
Remember how some games used those manuals as security? Page, paragraph, line, word. Doing that every time I loaded the game was annoying. The last game I remember playing that used that method was Railroad Tycoon. Another was Elite Plus
 
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