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Advertisement and whatever the fuck is going on with the Steam Deck

Niko (she/her) — Thoughts — 28/10/21 22:40 GMT-5

I was thinking the other day, “hey, would be quite pog if I had a place to dump all my thoughts, huh?” And then I remembered that we have a blog.

This is not a gaming blog btw Im just a gaymer sometimes.

So the news in case someone has managed to remain unaware, Steam is making a handheld PC now. When I saw this it didn’t make a lot of sense to me, I didn’t get at first how a PC could be handheld, but that’s also because I just didn’t know that was a thing. In my head the definition of a PC was like, a PC. Yknow? The ones you put on a desktop? Anyways, it would seem that they are trying to appeal to PC gamers and console gamers at the same time, and honestly, its not looking bad.

So, uh, this is an article about advertisements, not about the steam deck itself. Sorry if you’re here for that.

So, I generally have Opinions as humans tend to do. I don’t think advertisements are like, inherently bad, it’s just that under our current system they are. Even good adverts are most likely only motivated only by money, not by ethics or personal belief. We live in a molochian system where X is, pretty much, only money. So I’m really extremely suspicious (holy shit i said the amogus word) about the fact that Valve’s way of advertising the Steam Deck is… actually so good?

Okay, so.

No one who has ever lived likes ads. No one has ever said “oh boy, I sure want to go on YouTube to see what ads I’m given today! I love the stuff they recommend me all the time!”, and if you have then I’m sorry but you don’t exist. I just made you up as an example of someone that does not exist. Why could this be? What is it about ads that we so absolutely despise?

Well, imagine the following scenario. You are not hungry, like, at all. In fact, you are so fucking full, just literally about to explode. And this asshole comes around and goes “yo here’s this spaghetti, its really good. you want it don’t ya?.”

I would slap this guy in the face.

Now imagine you are hungry, like literally the hungriest you’ve been last week. Not like, starving, tho. You just want something nice to eat, y’know? Y’know. You decide to call a guy who knows people who make spaguetti and this guy starts going on about different people who could give you something nice to eat.

There’s a very subtle difference between these two. Like, veeeery subtle. In one, you are actively searching for someone to recommend you things you might want. In the other, someone gives you things they think you want, when you in fact just don’t. In the second one you are searching for advertisements of people who make things, in this case, food, and in the first one the advertisement comes to you, undesirably to all.

Now, a third scenario, a fork of the second scenario. You call the guy, all goes well, and he starts going on about why you want a specific dish made by a specific guy. That’s… kind of annoying, isn’t it? You knew what you wanted already, and if not, you wanted options, you didnt want a specific option given to you with extreme force.

This one is equivalent to voluntarily seeking the first scenario. Funny, isn’t it?

So hopefully this helps set a line that delimits what ok adverts are. They are non-intrusive, informative, and respectful of the audience’s boundaries.
But if you want to make cash, what you want is to rub things in people’s faces until they have no choice but to get it just to get rid of you. So, the first scenario is kind of everywhere, it’s just simpler to do and more efficient. Even better, if people get used to this you’ve essentially changed the way they react to ads so that they get anything that is presented as good. Ads like this are fucking evil. Evil ads are everywhere.

But, at least at the time of writing, Valve is not doing that with the Steam Deck. Which is fucking weird? But it makes sense from a molochian perspective. Hear me out:

The most surprising part so far is that they are acknowledging that some games are going to be fucking broken. They aren’t just saying “you can play any game in Steam Deck” (which, if we are being consistent with everything else they have said, would be technically not a lie), but instead they are saying “many games are gonna be a great experience, some are gonna be broken, some are gonna be Very Broken, and some we just have no fucking clue lol. but you can like do whatever”

I think the main reason they are doing this is that no one else would do it, and people wish they’d actually known how broken things are before actually getting them, so knowing that things aren’t gonna be great all the time means that they will not be disappointed if they are. No one is expecting a disappointment from there, because everyone already knows the flaws.

They are also focusing a lot on user freedom. “It’s your PC, do whatever. Install another fucking OS if you want, idfk dude”, which so far I don’t think any other major game distribution company thing whatever has done, but as shown by the “thing whatever” strung together, I am not knowledgeable in console gaming at all. If I am right, though, that means this is something that people want, but no one has done before. Of course they’re gonna take advantage of it (hehe i made a pun).

And, of course, the real reason I actually kind of enjoy watching the Steam Deck videos… they just make it not feel like they’re shoving it in your face???? They show you a thing and then they tell you what it does. They don’t tell you why you want it, they don’t tell it in a tone that yells things out loud making it feel like you should be excited too. They just show you what thing do.

Fucking weird.

But it kind of makes sense? People are always expecting disappointment. People are used to wanting the things that are shown as good, then being disappointing that it was all false, only partially true, or just… not as good as they manage to make it look. We are all expecting to be disappointed, but having to conform because there’s no better thing either, or because the thing has been got, might as well use thing. So it makes sense that they are mitigating any anticipated disappointment by just being descriptive.

It’s better in a lot of ways, I just don’t think their motivation to do it in a better way is actually just because it’s better. And I hate that I’m falling for it, because I’m kind of waiting for the next one.

Holy shit I made myself up as an example of a person that does not exist. Wow. I bamboozled myself. Holy shit. Amazing. Incredible. Twelve out of twelve.

That’s about all I had to say, really. I don’t think there’s a conclusion to this. Just thoughts I have from my limited and blatantly human perspective.