VIDEO: Games that sold because of demos

A weird episode in the style of Game Sack, but with 50% less hosts, and garbage production values. Wahey, welcome to the Examined Life (of Gaming)! This episode is about games that sold because of demos. Not because of their own demos, but because they had demos of other games packed in.

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  • CBob

    I enjoyed ZOE and ZoE2 back in the day. In fact I’m probably one of the few people who bought ZoE for the game itself and not the MGS2 demo.

    That said, the criticisms of ZoE here are spot on. Considering how it sold on the back of the MGS2 demo, It amuses me that the best way to describe ZoE really would be “like a demo for an early beta build of ZoE2”. If anyone’s looking for a copy (which you probably shouldn’t), best to go in thinking of it as a two demo bundle instead of a full game with a demo thrown in.

    ZoE2 is a much much better game in nearly every way, and I would recommend it. It’s not classics material, but it is good console fun. If it were a movie, it’d be the sort people call “popcorn entertainment”.

    • Engler Pascal

      Yeah, i bought the HD-Remake of ZoE 1+2 because i wanted some Mechaaction and it was cheap. and yep, ZoE 1 is a fun, but really average game with terrible Voice acting from the mouths of bad CGI-Characters. But as i said, it’s fun.
      I haven’t played ZOE 2 yet, though so i can’t say anything about that.

      • CBob

        If you liked ZOE1 you’ll like ZOE2 way better. The gameplay feels a lot more fleshed out, the art style is more refined and the maps/enemies more varied, the voice acting is better, and it’s actually a proper satisfying full game length rather than how ZOE1 feels like only the first three levels of a game with the rest missing.

        Only thing that doesn’t really get an upgrade is the story: it’s more complex than ZOE1’s, but it’s still a total “paint by numbers” anime stereotype plot. On the plus side, it does have noticeably more of Hideo Kojima’s trademark OTT-yet-somehow-still-tongue-in-cheek wackyness. Not as strong as in the MGS series, but it’s definitely there.

  • Film Runner

    I you like MGS2’s plot, there’s a very interesting analysis someone did of it that explains a lot of the more batshit stuff: http://www.deltaheadtranslation.com/MGS2/DOTM_TOC.htm

  • freddy

    I don’t think demos are dying because most new games suck, or at least any more than most games in the ’90s or Oughts sucked, but because how a demo can cannibalize its own sales. I poured more hours into the Jagged Alliance 2 demo than a lot of whole games, and I did buy JA2 and loved it (But that remake a few years ago. Ugh! If ever there was a game that made me hate Steam and the inability to return or resell games, that’d be it!), but for every demo like that, there are probably a dozen or more that satisfy well enough to remove any need to play the actual game.