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T O P I C
Fox vs Monolith
June 27th 2000, 02:43 CEST by andy

Remember the recent he say / she say antics of Microsoft and Bungie, with the two companies insisting that opposite sides of the same story were true? Well it's happening again...



This time the two soon-to-be-embarrassed companies are Monolith and Fox Interactive.

According to this story on the PC Format web site (which I used to write for, should anyone consider that relevant) Monolith is currently developing the sequel to Alien vs Predator. PC Format claims to have been told this by Fox Interactive.

However, Monolith's PR co-ordinator Dan Miller is quoted as saying: "Neither Fox or Monolith have made any announcements on any games besides Sanity: Aiken's Artifact and No One Lives Forever."

I don't know what's more scary -- a company accusing journos of lying when they report an official press statement, or the sequel to such a critically-acclaimed game being made by... The Best Games Company In The World. (Hey, I owe them one! Normal service will be resumed shortly.)

So what's going on? Has someone at Fox got their wires crossed? Have the Monolith boys not been keeping Fox up to date? Or, as I suspect is more likely, could Monolith be trying to keep this game under wraps until the company image has had a chance to heal?

Ah, the joys of public relations... brings a tear to my eye, it does.

-oOo-

On a totally different note...

I've mentioned before about a new site I'll be starting soon, which will give people a chance to publicise bad or irresponsible mainstream journalism. Seeing as that site isn't online yet, I'll take this opportunity to mention this other PC Format story. No commentary from me, just click the link and see what you think...

C O M M E N T S
Home » Topic: Fox vs Monolith

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#1 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-06-27 03:30:12
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
Quote of the Nanosecond:

"(watch this end up as a quote)  Doh!" -- by: Valeyard

<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#2 by "Vengeance[CoD]"
2000-06-27 03:56:47
rhiggi@home.com
On the NY times article:

Was the article classified as of the time it was posted to the internet?  How difficult would it to determine if thier "blocking" method worked?  How responsible was the NY Times, other than just being dumb?  I dont know if its standard procedure to check your graphics or not...

Thats horrendeous.  Between one companys blunder and another idiots ego, people could loose thier lives.  Its a shame.  

V<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#3 by "Andy"
2000-06-27 04:27:29
andy@planetcrap.com
<b>#2</b>, Vengeance[CoD]:
<QUOTE>
another idiots ego
</QUOTE>
That's where I disagree with the PC Format story. In 99.9% of cases I'd agree that someone posting that sort of information was doing it for the wrong reason, but on this occasion I think it was the right thing to do.

Much better that everyone know the information is out there, rather than just a select few, because chances are the few who get it will be the few who would want it for the wrong reasons.

--

If anyone's reading this... :)

I've got no idea what's wrong with the front page of the site at the moment, apart from that it's a problem with the MySQL database. I have no control over the server, and even if I did I wouldn't know how to fix it, so it could be several hours or several days before the site is working again. It just depends where Morn is and what he's doing.
#4 by "BarneyQue"
2000-06-27 04:45:05
BarneyQue@hotmail.com http://N/A
<b>#3</b> "Andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>


If anyone's reading this... :)

I've got no idea what's wrong with the front page of the site at the moment, apart from that it's a problem with the MySQL database. I have no control over the server, and even if I did I wouldn't know how to fix it, so it could be several hours or several days before the site is working again. It just depends where Morn is and what he's doing.



</QUOTE>

Well now, hats off to the CrapSpy, keeps on chugging along despite a dead website.  I'm impressed.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#5 by "BarneyQue"
2000-06-27 04:51:39
BarneyQue@hotmail.com http://N/A
OK, now I've read the linked article, and I have to say, the question that comes to mind, is WTF was the nytimes doing with a classified document??

Seems someone has made a huge error here, and while John did the right thing alerting them to the problem, I feel he committed a seriously dangerous selfish act in posting the uncensored version.

My quick take on this is that he did a bad thing, but I'm sure someone here will convince me otherwise somehow.

<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#6 by "Vengeance[CoD]"
2000-06-27 05:14:55
rhiggi@home.com
<b>#3</b> "Andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>

That's where I disagree with the PC Format story. In 99.9% of cases I'd agree that someone posting that sort of information was doing it for the wrong reason, but on this occasion I think it was the right thing to do.

Much better that everyone know the information is out there, rather than just a select few, because chances are the few who get it will be the few who would want it for the wrong reasons.

</QUOTE>

Ohh boy an arguement :).  Ok theres what he did and my way.

1) What he did.  Everyone knows the people involved.  Thier names at least, thier identities and families are probably easy to prove and people easy to find after that.  Sure they know that they are now targets but do they really have time to prepare an escape or some sort of protection for thier families?  No, they found at the exact same time or possible after those who will no doubt persecute them.  There may be nothing they can do but flee the country.  Will it be in time or not, who knows.  The upshot to this is that Young is in the spotlight as are the people who will soon be refuges.  If anything happens to them we'll know why even if there is nothing we can do.  A little more political pressure perhaps to not harm them... maybe depends on the situation.  I don't think Iran will be bowing to the PCness of other nations though.

2) Better idea: Simply say the the information was compromised and everyone involved was given up.  Perhaps publish first names.  This gives the persectuted and thier familys a chance to prepare.  They know they were involved but thier neighbors dont know yet.  After a certain extent of time you can give out the full names of those involved (for several reasons).  In this case Young gets some/less notiority and there isn't as much shock value to the story.  The familys of the people who will be affected probably appreciate this much more.

In this case I think the spread of information is a horrible idea.  Normally it is so this is contrary to our normal way of doing things, doesnt mean its always bad though.  I think peoples lives and the public good are best served by giving those people time to prepare, not just for themselves but also for their families.  They need time to make whatever arrangements they need to.  After all the world knows who they are, it may be too late.

V<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#7 by "Vengeance[CoD]"
2000-06-27 05:17:11
rhiggi@home.com
Hmmm..  I've noticed there is a correlation between proper sentence structure (complete thoughts) and sleep.  Interesting....


V<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#8 by "None-1a"
2000-06-27 10:17:16
none1a@home.com http://www.geocities.com/none-1a/
<QUOTE>I don't know what's more scary -- a company accusing journos of lying when they report an official press statement, or the sequel to such a critically-acclaimed game being made by... The Best Games Company In The World. (Hey, I owe them one! Normal service will be resumed shortly.)</QUOTE>

Sorry andy but could you point me to that official press statement some where othern then PC Format, I'm not seeing an offical press statment from eather company one way or the other. As leat not for the genereal press.
#9 by "Andy"
2000-06-27 12:17:42
andy@planetcrap.com
<b>#6</b>, Vengeance[CoD]:

Well, you've helped me make an important decision: When the meeja site finally goes online, it *will* have a discussion thread for each story.

My mind was made up on the PC Format story, but now I agree with your analysis of the situation. So great, now I have to code a message board. ;-)


<b>#8</b>, None-1a:
<QUOTE>
Sorry andy but could you point me to that official press statement some where othern then PC Format, I'm not seeing an offical press statment from eather company one way or the other. As leat not for the genereal press.
</QUOTE>
And how do you expect me to do that then?
#10 by "godZero"
2000-06-27 15:46:25
godzero@gmx.de
back to the topic:

i believe it's just a normal behaviour. the game isn't announced yet, so they don't want to tell _us_ something that could become a lie. if they (theoretically) dump the game because ('whatever'), it'll be like: "Liars! Liars! Fuck 'lith! Fuck fox". that would give a nice topic for 'crap :-)

it is always possible that a game never gets finished, or even that they actually don't make this game, so they have a good reason not to comment anything anyway(from their point of view).<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#11 by "Jeff"
2000-06-27 15:48:43
jeffmill@bellsouth.net
PC Format's over reacting with the Monolith story. Some PR flac screwed up and spilled the beans early. According to the quote in the article, all Monolith said is that there hasn't been an official announcement by either company and, without a press release, that's true.

It's like saying, "We can neither confirm nor deny ...." It's silly, since the news is out, but Monolith didn't lie. They just said we've made no official comment.

If web sites are calling PC Format a bunch of liars, the web sites are to blame, not Monolith.

As far as the NY Times story? Yeesh. What a screw up. I don't know that there is a good way to deal with a situation like that.
#12 by "godZero"
2000-06-27 15:52:38
godzero@gmx.de
Vengeance[CoD]:
<QUOTE>I've noticed there is a correlation between proper sentence structure (complete thoughts) and sleep</QUOTE>

yeah, but if the structure is always wrong?

no caps (caps are lame...), my not-so-good english, not checking out if the post is error-free...so how can you say if  _I_  had enough sleep (which i never do, usually)? :-))
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#13 by "Desiato"
2000-06-27 16:10:17
desiato_hotblack@hotmail.com http://www.spew2.com
The real question is:

Is AvP really *worth* it?

I suppose, seeing that a sequel is planned. Have to hope that the patch support for the game will be better than Blood2.

Perhaps a Total Conversion project would be better. Ever see the alien model in UT or Q3A? They both look pretty damn good.

Desiato
#14 by "Andy"
2000-06-27 16:11:44
andy@planetcrap.com
<b>#11</b>, Jeff:
<QUOTE>
PC Format's over reacting with the Monolith story. Some PR flac screwed up and spilled the beans early. According to the quote in the article, all Monolith said is that there hasn't been an official announcement by either company and, without a press release, that's true.
</QUOTE>
If you are told something by a PR rep then I think it is fair to report that as an official statement. (Unless it's off-the-record, of course, which it clearly wasn't in this case otherwise it wouldn't have been reported in the first place.)
#15 by "Dethstryk"
2000-06-27 16:28:40
dethstryk@damagegaming.com http://www.damagegaming.com/
<b>#13</b> "Desiato" wrote...
<QUOTE>Is AvP really *worth* it?</QUOTE>
I don't want to see Monolith dip their hands on it, but I've had a number of awesome LAN parties that involved Aliens vs. Predator deathmatch. That game's multiplayer actually offered something great with the three different races, and scared the piss out of everyone. I think it was worth it.

<QUOTE>Perhaps a Total Conversion project would be better. Ever see the alien model in UT or Q3A? They both look pretty damn good.</QUOTE>
Anyone remember the Aliens TC for Doom? Now that was a masterpiece in its own.


--
Dethstryk
Damage Gaming
#16 by "Billy Saw Hurock"
2000-06-27 16:56:22
billysawhurock@hotmail.com http://www.bloweduprealgood.com
Aliens for Doom, ROCK! CLICK!  SHIT!!!
#17 by "Jeff"
2000-06-27 17:00:58
jeffmill@bellsouth.net
Andy:

Well, I haven't read the original story, but it appears PC Format didn't attribute the statement to Fox or name the source. In that case, I'd have to say that the comment was either off the record or from an anonymous source.

Anyways, it sounds more like a communications snafu than lies. PC Format should have thrown their source back in the Monolith guy's face. I'd bet he didn't know that someone at Fox was talking. Essentially, all he did was no comment PC Format. He didn't deny the game is under development.

No lies here, it seems to me.
#18 by "deadlock"
2000-06-27 17:15:09
with regard to the NYTimes story, I simply don't see how this could be true, at least not in the way it is presented by PCFormat. Adobe Photoshop files have to be saved in the proprietary .PSD format in order for layers to be retained (ie not flattened automatically). PSD files are _never_ used as online images, no browser is capable of opening PSD images. Unless the NYTimes actually offered the original PSD file (with layers intact) for download from their site, there is no way that Young could have gotten a copy of the document with the layers intact from the Internet. I _could_ be wrong about this but I doubt that I am.

Note, I'm not saying that the story is completely untrue, I just don't see how it could have happened in the way that PCFormat describe it.

 - deadlock
#19 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-06-27 17:46:25
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>Note, I'm not saying that the story is completely untrue, I just don't see how it could have happened in the way that PCFormat describe it. </quote>
It's an Adobe Acrobat file, not a Photoshop file. Apparently, much like Photoshop, you can flatten an Acrobat document, and the person that created the PDF did not do this.

It's not unlike people using Fast Saves in Word, then sending out a press release as a Word document. Often you can see every revision in the original document.
#20 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-06-27 17:49:37
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
Lordy, what a smug attitude on that original PC Format story. But the key is that Monolith did not deny they're working on the game; they merely mentioned they have not announced it.
#21 by "hunchback"
2000-06-27 17:52:05
danerat@mindspring.com http://www2.ucsc.edu/~erat/
deadlock: Sounds like they got it wrong in the PCFormat article.  From <a href="http://www.securityfocus.com/news/51">what I've read</a>, it was a PDF file, which would certainly make a lot more sense.
#22 by "Andy"
2000-06-27 17:59:51
andy@planetcrap.com
<b>#20</b>, Steve Bauman:
<QUOTE>
Lordy, what a smug attitude on that original PC Format story.
</QUOTE>
PC Format? Smug? Surely not! :)

It's not really designed for an American audience. I think Brits are much more likely to "get it". I like it, anyway... and they do get a surprising number of exclusives.

But then, it's all gone downhill since I was there. j/k ;-)
#23 by "Illbuddha"
2000-06-27 18:26:54
ck@databass.com http://www.databass.com/ck/
I'm with Jeff.

Fox decides to make the announcement, and forgets to let Dan Miller know. While it may indicate a lack of communication between Fox and Monolith, the assertion that someone is lying is pretty tenuous.

<QUOTE>I've mentioned before about a new site I'll be starting soon, which will give people a chance to publicise bad or irresponsible mainstream journalism.</QUOTE>

So you want to make the leap from bad and irresponsible game journalism? Good for you.
#24 by "Seth Krieg"
2000-06-27 19:24:31
seth@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#14</b> "Andy" wrote -
<QUOTE>

<B>#11</B>, Jeff:

<quote>
PC Format's over reacting with the Monolith story. Some PR flac screwed up and spilled the beans early. According to the quote in the article, all Monolith said is that there hasn't been an official announcement by either company and, without a press release, that's true.
</quote>
If you are told something by a PR rep then I think it is fair to report that as an official statement. (Unless it's off-the-record, of course, which it clearly wasn't in this case otherwise it wouldn't have been reported in the first place.)



</QUOTE>

Andy: This may be a breach of NDA Press information, and they're probably handling things with other news sites/promised exclusive issues. And that's probably what they're juggling their words for. This news f's up all sorts of press coverage when the game starts getting previewed and which publications preview it.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#25 by "Seth Krieg"
2000-06-27 19:26:20
seth@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#22</b> "Andy" wrote -
<QUOTE>

<B>#20</B>, Steve Bauman:

<quote>
Lordy, what a smug attitude on that original PC Format story.
</quote>
PC Format? Smug? Surely not! :)

It's not really designed for an American audience. I think Brits are much more likely to "get it". I like it, anyway... and they do get a surprising number of exclusives.

But then, it's all gone downhill since I was there. j/k ;-)

</QUOTE>

It's all that tabloid journalism you whacky brits fetish over. Don't even bother denying it. :)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#26 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-06-27 20:40:00
darkseid-d@planetcrap.com http://www.captured.com/boomstick
avp multiplayer .. what a bunch of shite.

lets see.

buggy, hello mr marine who suddenly decides to jump ... continually.

hello mr network game on a 100mbs switch that cant keep a 5 player game connected to any of the 5 machines as a server

hello ludicrous player speeds where the predator out runs the alien

hello insane speeds where you cant _chase_ members of the same species as they horribly quick (think scout from TFC speeds)

hello weapons not firing

hello trapped in 'dead' mode

hello using the alien vision in 32bit under 2k and crashing the game

hello head bites not being fatal.


bad bad bad bad bad game on a lan (it got worse with more people, all 95 didnt help, all 2k didnt help)



Single player was _great_, deathmatch was pathetic.

'solo' deathmatch ground to a halt as the number of aliens dragged your fps down to around 2 after the first 5 mins, regardless of how many / few were on screen.


Ds<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#27 by "I'm The Keymaster"
2000-06-27 21:03:45
About that NY Times screwed up pdf thing...why wasn't the NY Times blamed for endangering lives?  The information is out there because of the Times, not Young.  Perhaps Young is to blame for making the sensetive info more easily accessible?  Well, if that's the logic which puts Young at fault then why aren't all the journalists who explain what Young did to get the information also described as "annihilating any last chance of [the conspirators] escaping detection"?  It's quite ridiculous to criticize someone when you're own logic betrays you.
#28 by "Vengeance[CoD]"
2000-06-27 21:13:42
rhiggi@home.com
<b>#27</b> "I'm The Keymaster" wrote...
<QUOTE>
 Well, if that's the logic which puts Young at fault then why aren't all the journalists who explain what Young did to get the information also described as "annihilating any last chance of [the conspirators] escaping detection"? It's quite ridiculous to criticize someone when you're own logic betrays you.
</QUOTE>
Because they are not purposely naming names, Young is.  You'd have to have the use of the previous version of the NY Times article to actually use the same methods to get the names.  Or you could go to Youngs site and read them with no work involved at all.  Thats the difference.  I think the NY Times did something wrong, but Mr. Young did something despicable.

V<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#29 by "VeeSPIKE"
2000-06-27 22:34:03
appliedavoidanc@triton.net
<b>#8</b> "None-1a" wrote...
<QUOTE>Sorry andy but could you point me to that official press statement some where
othern then PC Format, I'm not seeing an offical press statment from eather
company one way or the other. As leat not for the genereal press.
</QUOTE>


Try this <a href="http://www.pcformat.co.uk/newsread.asp?story_id=734&keyword1=AvP&keyword2=&keyword3=&ScrollAction=1&story_category=">here</a>

Although it does not contain any press release, I believe this is the original article they refer to.

I looked over at Fox Interactive's site (which has an absolute bastard of an intro page. It will not let you by it) but could not find any press releases regarding AvP2

<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#30 by "VeeSPIKE"
2000-06-27 22:42:38
appliedavoidanc@triton.net
<b>#21</b> "hunchback" wrote...
<QUOTE>

deadlock: Sounds like they got it wrong in the PCFormat article. From <A href="http://www.securityfocus.com/news/51">what I've read</A>, it was a PDF file, which would certainly make a lot more sense. </QUOTE>

Thank You. I was reading the posts between V and Andy and wondering what the hell they were talking. now I know.
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#31 by "None-1a"
2000-06-27 23:50:49
none1a@home.com http://www.geocities.com/none-1a/
<QUOTE>And how do you expect me to do that then? </QUOTE>

Simply saying that you did not know of any others would have been fine. The reason I asked is that the following line from the PCFormat article looked a little odd to me,

<i>Yet strangely, after having contacted the AvP sites concerned, and explaining the truth of our story, we've been met by a stony wall of silence.</i>

That means (to me)one of two things, some one at Fox told PCFormat something off the recored (possibly with out saying it shouldn't go to press), or PCFormat took the story off of a AvP fans site that quoted a Fox rep and is trying to hide that fact (my guess would be number one).

<QUOTE>I looked over at Fox Interactive's site (which has an absolute bastard of an intro page. It will not let you by it) but could not find any press releases regarding AvP2 </QUOTE>

Yeah I cheaked that out as well, it seams like there are a number of Flash intros being used, so when you skip one another one loads up.
#32 by "deadlock"
2000-06-28 00:25:00
deadlock@eircom.net
Oops, my bad, but the article did say that the patch job was done using Photoshop.

anyhow...

deadlock
#33 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-06-28 00:59:57
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#26</b> "Darkseid-[D!]" wrote...

I never had any problem once I patched it so I could play it on my card ? Were you running the up to date version ?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#34 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-06-28 01:11:24
darkseid-d@planetcrap.com http://www.captured.com/boomstick
got the latest patch of the AVP site

/me shrugs

it just wasnt that fun to play ..

predator was rediculously over powered in small games and the alien hadnt a hope against masses of marines.

1 on 1 ... the marine was dog food against the predator .. and if the alien player was good .. dogfood.


Ds<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#35 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-06-28 01:18:53
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#34</b> "Darkseid-[D!]" wrote...
<QUOTE>

got the latest patch of the AVP site

/me shrugs

it just wasnt that fun to play ..

predator was rediculously over powered in small games and the alien hadnt a hope against masses of marines.

1 on 1 ... the marine was dog food against the predator .. and if the alien player was good .. dogfood.
</QUOTE>

true ... we only played it as all one race against the other race (which was usually AI). The problem was that if half your team died it almost guarenteed the rest died becuase both groups were usually at opposite ends of map<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#36 by "godZero"
2000-06-28 08:04:17
godzero@gmx.de
<b>#13</b> "Desiato" wrote...
<QUOTE>Is AvP really *worth* it?

</QUOTE>

despite the crappy graphics, it's one of the best games i've ever played. what's your point?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#37 by "Allison Axe"
2000-07-07 23:33:31
axe1a@1nol.com
someone lied:  http://gamecenter.com/News/Item/0,3,0-4432,00.html?st.gc.fd.lgn.gn<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#38 by "JACKY"
2001-07-10 17:26:19
jacplkngtn@aol.com
Planet crap sure is crap infact its a load of sh-- and you can take that to the bank.
#39 by "JACKY"
2001-07-10 17:26:24
jacplkngtn@aol.com
Planet crap sure is crap infact its a load of sh-- and you can take that to the bank.
#40 by G-Man
2004-09-23 08:12:37
I am an asshole.
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