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Originally posted by ArcAngel3 I'll confess to being out of the loop when it comes to the idea of EQ2X being made at the expense of EQ2 (regular?) players. Can you elaborate?
The very quick version
Smokejumper replaces Brenlo as senior producer and players are nervous about his extensive free to play background. Soe asks players if they mind cash shop and smokejumper reassures them soe has heard them loud and clear about "not in our backyard" and promises the players their game will not go free to play.
28 days later soe announces EQ2X free to play service.
Soe removes free trials to the legacy servers unless a current player mails a buddy invite.
Soe reassigns nearly the entire dev team to work on new player experience for eq2/eq2x. Instead of delivering high end content on the 3 month cycle like they promised they redo the UI to be new player friendly (with a huge station cash button built into it), spell effects reduced or removed, newbie questing redone, cash shop interface on in game vendors, etc. Everything is focused on getting new players into EQ2X and EQ2 just has to deal with it.
Transfers are offered off the legacy servers to the new server, but no one can transfer form the f2p servers to the old servers.
The p2p forums are linked with a portal to the f2p forums, but the f2p forums get no link to the subscription forums.
etc, etc, etc.
It was a pretty clear attmept to replace the current playerbase for not allowing cash shops to go into the current game, but keep them around just in case it didn't work... which of course it didn't.
Originally posted by headen This is a scab that will never heal. Because people keep picking at it.
It's hard not to pick on it, it's a compulsive tic really, sort of like picking your nose and rolling the boogers between fingers until it dries into a little ball.
Originally posted by Obee Originally posted by ArcAngel3 Originally posted by Obee Originally posted by Kazlin
Soo much more going on here than a simple game change that people didn't like, which is often how the NGE is portrayed these days. One honest mistake that unreasonable gamers refuse to let go of? I really don't think that description fits the SWG situation...at all. And, judging from the responses, my perspective is not unique.
I fully agree with you. The game was mismanaged from the start and the main creative people behind the game's design were removed from the dev team within a few months after launch. That left the game with a dev team that didn't understand the game, nor did they particualrly like the game the way it was.
SOE is a company that looks at short term income at the expense of the long term. None of the problems of SWG are specific to SWG. They can be found among every product SOE develops. You have folks in charge who think they know better what their customers want than their customers do. When thier customers tell them they don't like the things the developers are doing, the folks at SOE get pissy with their customers and continue doing what their customers don't want.
SWG and the NGE are just the largest and easiest example to point outwhat is wrong at SOE. The NGE wasn't a random outlier, it was, and is, a prime example of what has always been wrong at SOE. SOE is a company who's employees seem to resent thier customers, and it has been that way since EQ launched. Unfortunately the mindset at SOE is leeching out to other companies, such as Cryptic.
I really don't think that is fair. Cryptic has been very responsive to players in regards to STO. From what I have hard , they have been just as responsive with CO. There have been a number of shakeups at Cryptic and most consider them under new and as I say more reasonable management. STO has undergone a very positive number of changes and looks like it shall continue that trend far into the future. So as one that was around for the NGE with SOE I just don't buy the comparison with Cryptic.
Let's party like it is 1863!
Originally posted by Gruug Originally posted by Obee Originally posted by ArcAngel3 Originally posted by Obee Originally posted by Kazlin
I agree Gruug. Cryptic screwed up right at the start and they have been trying to make the game better ever since. They have really been talking to the players and are actively trying to make the game better and I feel they are doing it, even if it is slow. I to was around for before the nge and I will honestly say that trying to put cryptic in the same area as sony is just wrong. No other company has tried to screw over their entire playerbase like sony has and SADLY, even now, Sony still doesn't get it. They are still doing the same thing. If sony ever wants a chance to get back in the ring with the big boys, they are going to have to clear out their entire management structure and get people in there that really wants the games to succeed. One of my favorite sayings from EQ1 was always, You are in OUR world now. Sadly, the management there took that quote the wrong way and let it go to their heads!
Originally posted by Daffid011 Originally posted by ArcAngel3 I'll confess to being out of the loop when it comes to the idea of EQ2X being made at the expense of EQ2 (regular?) players. Can you elaborate?
Wow, how did EQ2 vets respond to this?
NGE shows the core attitude of SOE. No other company in history has ever completely re-vamped their game without even telling their subscribers they were going to do so.
The equivalent is taking your car to get an oil change and auto shop changes the paint color, interior, and swaps out the engine with something you don't want.
Now if SOE is still scratching their head asking themselves what is wrong with this. then they should go out of business. Quite frankly that is mutiny on your customers, and that one event has caused me to never consider an SOE game again. That even makes me look at SONY as a whole in a bad light.
NGE is the same as stabbing a friend in the back, literally... Friendship runs much deeper than a business customer relationship. So the wound is much much deeper.
If SOE is truly sorry for what they did with NGE then they would setup some servers that are pre-NGE, update the graphics, and fix all the problems the game has and let all the SWG fans have a blast! I don't know how many times I've heard poeple mention SWG as back in the glory days. The ironic part is SOE is still shooting themselves in the foot by not haveing a pre-NGE server. Many people would come back and play the game even after all these years...
Originally posted by ArcAngel3 Wow, how did EQ2 vets respond to this?
They protested and pleaded only to be met by deaf ears. Some moved to the new f2p server, some defended the actions, other lefts and soe was merging servers a few months later. Business as ususal.
Of course it was developed in secret from the players and they were mislead through omission of the facts by the senior producer that something like this wasn't going to happen. Ironically the release date was like 2 weeks after they dropped the surprise news on the players. You can read a bit about it here .
It is just to bad soe can not seem to find a way to actually work with players when they do just about anything. They simply care more about pleasing people who don't play their games than the people who do play them.
Originally posted by DoomsDay01 Originally posted by Gruug I really don't think that is fair. Cryptic has been very responsive to players in regards to STO. From what I have hard , they have been just as responsive with CO. There have been a number of shakeups at Cryptic and most consider them under new and as I say more reasonable management. STO has undergone a very positive number of changes and looks like it shall continue that trend far into the future. So as one that was around for the NGE with SOE I just don't buy the comparison with Cryptic.
I will just say this about comparing cryptic to soe.
John Needham is the CEO of cryptic. He worked as a senior VP at soe for many years before he joined cryptic and was in charge of marketing, business development, etc. He is still running cryptic today.
Looking at a lot of the bigger blunders cryptic has pulled or tried to pull there are a lot of similarities, especially things that fall into his field of expertise.
Originally posted by Daffid011 Originally posted by DoomsDay01 Originally posted by Gruug I really don't think that is fair. Cryptic has been very responsive to players in regards to STO. From what I have hard , they have been just as responsive with CO. There have been a number of shakeups at Cryptic and most consider them under new and as I say more reasonable management. STO has undergone a very positive number of changes and looks like it shall continue that trend far into the future. So as one that was around for the NGE with SOE I just don't buy the comparison with Cryptic.
Plus, Cryptic's response to pissing off their customers has been to ban the complainers and pretend things are just fine, until the sub numbers take a hit, which has been SOE's standard response.
Omg, omg, OmyGod......here we go again
DC universe online is pretty much starwarse NGE... you do realize that
www.insomniacsbar.com (my little bar that i own in florida)
Heres what SOE did wrong with Anarchy Online with Star Wars Skins Online. (wow long name I guess thats why they changed the name to SWG)
Its kind of like what Geroge Lucas did wrong with the prequels... Evereything. The game was in no way shape or form Star Wars apart from the akins and builoding models. Character models were decent until you put on a belt that on you caracter was like a 14 foot ring around you.
Pre NGE it was just an asian grinder with a good skill progression system. Go to computer drive 9000 miles out into the desert kill 3 storm troopers doing jumping jacks at a flag in the middle of nowhere, then have an epic battle with a flag to cpomplete mission. rinse repeat.
Ewoks in February.
No Lando Calrissian day on the 3rd Monday in January.
Originally posted by Daffid011 Originally posted by ArcAngel3 Wow, how did EQ2 vets respond to this?
I read the link to the official announcement. On one hand, it sounds like they are leaving the current EQ2 game the way players want it. On the other hand, it makes no mention of these items you highlighted:
"Smokejumper replaces Brenlo as senior producer and players are nervous about his extensive free to play background. Soe asks players if they mind cash shop and smokejumper reassures them soe has heard them loud and clear about "not in our backyard" and promises the players their game will not go free to play.
The p2p forums are linked with a portal to the f2p forums, but the f2p forums get no link to the subscription forums."
Originally posted by Terranah I haven't heard any vets say the game was perfect before NGE. Precu SWG had many issues, but with the NGE they threw the baby out with the bathwater, switching one set of problems for another.
True, the game pre CU had alot of bugs, and some game breaking bugs, but it was fun, amazingly fun, if SOE had focused on clearing out the bugs, instead of just tranforming the game it would be alive and running well today.
It's sad really, if they cleared out the bugs, and slowly balanced out classes/armor (Hello 95% resistance to everything), the game could be doing well today.
The introduction of regular classes were just dumber than dumb, SWG had a unique class system which still havent been copied in any larger games, which is amazing tbh, the crafting in SWG had so much deepth that crafting in games like WoW AoC etc is barely crafting at all.
The path was simple, SOE should have focused on the bugs, it could have kept them busy for a looong time, JTL was alright and really one of the best expansions I've ever seen, after which they should have done some work on the graphic engine, and just tae the usual path, bugfix and small adjustments.
But as others said, they saw WoW pull in alot of players and wanted a piece of the cake, but cmon, you don't see Ferrari trying to be Toyota just because they sell alot of cars, it was the worst decision they could have made, add their unbelivable atittude towards the players, and you've got a gaming company that views their customers as a downside to making money, instead of giving them entertainment.
Originally posted by shaganar If SOE is truly sorry for what they did with NGE then they would setup some servers that are pre-NGE, update the graphics, and fix all the problems the game has and let all the SWG fans have a blast! I don't know how many times I've heard poeple mention SWG as back in the glory days. The ironic part is SOE is still shooting themselves in the foot by not haveing a pre-NGE server. Many people would come back and play the game even after all these years...
This, I'd return right away if they made a Pre-CU/NGE server, heck I'd even buy the game and JTL at full price if I had to.
But alas, SOE is filled with idiots, seriously, the answer is right infront of them, but I guess their pride is more important than the customers.
Originally posted by ArcAngel3 *snip* When I think of this question, a number of things come immediately to mind, and I'll list them here: -releasing the game with serious bugs and issues, and not a lot of content -smuggler revamp...or not (Squad Leaders and as someone earlier mentioned Creature Handlers. Hell, with the NGE, SOE hated Creature Handlers so much that they removed them from the game) -force ranking system -battlegrounds -jedi controversies (pick one) (It all started with Publish 9. Ever since then, the devs put a much larger emphasis on Jedi, which in the OT time period, is wrong. They could've expanded more actual Star Wars canon whether it be characters, locales, or even gear, but no, they wanted Jedi to be front and center of the game. Before Publish 9, Jedi characters were actually revered by players. They were rare but potentially can be powerful. After Publish 9? I recall seeing the groups of Jedi coming out of the woodworks taking over the game. Eventually it got to the point where even in PvP/GCW, Jedi were the majority of combatants other than the occasional Doctors/Medics. It got to a point where Jedi were more common than Stormtroopers, which is so retardedly and obviously wrong to anyone that even watched the original movies at least even once) -scrapping of the CURB -introduction of the Combat Upgrade, with all its unwanted changes and negative impact on numerous professions -introduction of RMT to this subscription based game (I left before this all started going down, since I left in the the early days of the NGE) -RMT loot that is superior to crafted goods -apparent disregard for StarWars canon during this time period of the saga -poor treatment of gamers on the forums by SOE community reps (tirades, criticisms, post deletions and bannings when forum rules were not violated.) *snip* So, what do you think. Is it true that the NGE was the only thing SOE ever did wrong with this title, or is someone forgetting an awful lot of nastiness?
The NGE definitely wasn't the only thing SOE screwed up with SWG. Some stuff to add:
* Not having space travel and combat at launch. SWG was repeatedly beaten over the head about this on numerous reviews. I still remember one of the gaming mag reviews saying, "How the heck do you have a Star Wars MMORPG but have no space combat?" Bear in mind that when SWG came out, the Star Wars franchise recently had a very, very rich history of space games, so that made things even worse for SWG for not having any of it.
* Bugs just not getting fixed. SOE even before the NGE moved very slowly on fixing issues. This irked quite a bit of people I recall, including myself. When they tacked on a half-a**ed "updated" that was the NGE which introduced even MORE issues, well... the results weren't pretty.
* Stringing customers along with lies; False promises of big updates that will fix issues. Just give them a few more months (and keep paying that subscription). It didn't matter to SOE that they never lived up on that.
* Related to the above point was the whole issue with the CURB (Combat Update ReBalance) and the eventual CU (Combat Upgrade). Firstly, there was a big outcry that even though combat was great, there were major issues. There were also classes that badly, BADLY needed a revamp from this update. Firstly, we were told about the CURB, which essentially is a major review to the original game system, predominantly combat. This was THE major hope people had. There was an awful lot of input by the community on the major issues that plagued the game. This was the "savior" that would really get the game going in the proper direction by just fixing the game.
For about a *year* we waited, with SOE saying, "Just wait for the CURB" or other such nonsense. Then in mid-early '05 the CU (Combat Upgrade) hit. While still retaining the Skillpoint/Template System as well as the deep Crafting System, there were things introduced that the community never wanted. For example, Levels were introduced, which the game never required before. Anyways, I do remember a bunch of people leaving after the CU hit. I was on Ahazi, one of the larger servers. I saw the drop but we still retained alot of players there. The CU wasn't what we asked for.
Then the NGE arrived, and we all know what happened after that.
Anyways, the NGE wasn't the single catastrophic thing SOE did that killed the game. It was the last major thing SOE did (including failing to do certain things like those listed above) that finally drove the stake through the heart of the game. It was the final act that drove the vast majority of players away, never to come back for most parts.
Edit to add: I've said it in other threads/forums. Where would SWG be if SOE just fixed the game instead of doing two half-a**ed, core-gameplay changing revamps?
"I have only two out of my company and 20 out of some other company. We need support, but it is almost suicide to try to get it here as we are swept by machine gun fire and a constant barrage is on us. I have no one on my left and only a few on my right. I will hold." (First Lieutenant Clifton B. Cates, US Marine Corps, Soissons, 19 July 1918)
Originally posted by Loke666 Originally posted by Terranah I haven't heard any vets say the game was perfect before NGE. Precu SWG had many issues, but with the NGE they threw the baby out with the bathwater, switching one set of problems for another.
Actually, most of my friends who used to play it say that it was the perfect game, all issues long forgotten. I distinctly remember them complaining about bugs at the time but that is of course me remembering things wrong (right, Viktor?).
But I guess getting so totally screwed made them forget all the old stuff.
Few things that SOE did wrong:
It wasn't just the NGE. From what I understand, there was a subscription drop after CU also.
Then, for the NGE players that learned that game, they did The Chapter 6 Combat Downgrade, CHANGING the combat system yet again to go more "WoWish" with parry, parry, block, block, miss, miss. All controled via SOEs random number generator for that ever-luvin silent NERF to stats. ( adjusting the chance on the random number gen without patch notes, etc) This was a continuing process as the dev team had been cut down to 20 devs by that point so all the CHANGES they wanted couldn't be completed in one patch. So, the "new NGE" (C6CD - GU-Whatever) took almost a year to get done.
This had about the same effect as all the other CHANGES had on SWG, only this time the sub drops came with each patch. Ended up going from 100K subs (Smed released that info at the launch of C6CD) to about 30K (best guesstimates at the time) at the end of GU-Whatever. After that loss of subs, Lorin Jameson (Deadmeat) left as Producer (moved up) and the Dev team was cut to it's now 2.5 devs over the following year.
So in short gentlemen, this ill patient never had a chance. Too many things going against it by the developers themselves.
Piss-poor community relations; Total disregard for paying customers ("We don't give two s**ts about you guys, you're all replaceable"). Somehow SOE employees never heard of the phrase "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush." Somehow, these guys figured that paying customers weren't important and were always willing to sacrifice them to chase down some mythical crowd that would come running in after certain changers were implemented. Happened with SWG, and from what has been brought up by others, even in EQ2.
Lack of direction. You can see that from the numerous sweeping revamps this game had undergone.
Lack of drive in fixing the d*mn game.
In short folks, it's just lazy incompetence on several fronts. All this from a company that was once the leader in the MMORPG genre.
Customer service : Mr smedley we are getting allot of players complaining about bugs , not enough content , X is overpowered , lag and moreSmedley : omg , that's horrible . I will get on it right awaySmedley : Dev team we have a problem , we are getting allot of players complaining about this and that .Dev team : Damn , what do you want us to do about it mr Smedley ?smedley : Get rid of the players , that will make the complaining stop .
Based on everything I've read in this thread (some good reading btw) players do not believe that the NGE was an isolated incident.
One of the main problems Smed actually admitted to once was not listening to players. I'll agree with him on that one. If anyone suggests that NGE was one, uncharacteristic mistake that a few disturbed players refuse to forgive....you're still not listening.
Publish 9 was the beginning of the end of raph koster's swg. Publish 9 is what led to the cu and ultimately the nge.
Originally posted by Foomerang Publish 9 was the beginning of the end of raph koster's swg. Publish 9 is what led to the cu and ultimately the nge.
I've said that for quite a while. Once Pub 9 hit, certain trends began that skewed SWG away to another, unhealthy direction.
Originally posted by apollobsg75 Pre NGE it was just an asian grinder with a good skill progression system.
Though you have a point, SWG is not really comparable. I recently read some old reviews that complained that SWG was TOO EASY because you could cap-out most skill paths in a couple weeks if you really wanted to. (Most, I said: not including horrors like Bounty Hunter's Investigation line.) Asian grinders try to keep you playing forever by making it so slow to make progress. Pre-CU SWG kept you playing by making it easy and relatively quick to modify and fine tune your skill sets.
Originally posted by Jenuviel Holocrons were the beginning of the end for me. I started playing the game not so much because I was a fan of Star Wars, but more because the social professions sounded really fun to me (they addressed a major element that I found lacking in other MMOs). I played a Dancer, and had a lot of fun with it initially. One of the players wrote a guide on the forum about finding new and creative ways to chain steps/flourishes together that was really pretty complex (you timed the animations so the switches flowed), and I spent hours doing that, working on it with the other people who were also playing entertainers (most of them familiar names by the end of the first week). The holocrons came, and the cantinas filled with bots almost overnight. There was one bot in the cantina before that, so it wasn't as if nobody did it, but the unbelievable influx of them, many with spammy speeches requesting money, just turned cantinas from social hubs to experience production facilities. I ended up dropping Dancer, picking up Creature Handler and never setting foot in a cantina again unless I had fatigue. I kept playing for awhile after that, enjoying Creature Handler, but then I started running into ghost towns everywhere, just sprawling complexes of locked houses with no one in sight. It was kind of eerie and depressing. When I reached Mastery of my skills and looked around, there just wasn't anything of interest left for me; the social aspects of cantnas were gone, the crafters I'd developed relationships with had left the game, the Community Representatives on the forums were denying any problems existed, and I just didn't like the direction the game was heading. I guess it's sort of a blessing, because I made my break from the game about two months before the Combat Upgrade, so I was spared both that and the NGE. It's kind of sad, though. That first month or so was the best I've had in any game, and it wasn't even that "first MMO" bliss, given I'd played several others by that time. When things turned, they really turned, though.
Jenuviel, thank you for that painful story.
The whole AFK debacle--for me at least--showed the flaws of this game better than anything else ever could.
I was an entertainer...one of the most well known (and from what I understand, one of the most controversial) dancers in SWG. The artistry we did in those cantinas was something we have never experienced before, nor probably ever again.
But with anything good, it needed to be encouraged and preserved. We had restrictions against AFK playing written into the TOS. And yet, people did nothing. SOE did nothing. In fact, something even more awful happened. People started to think of AFK entertainers as good, and the actual playing players as 'bad entertainers' because they wouldn't leave their computers on and macro all day with the monitors off.
Now many players were concerned about what AFK did, but many more players--the ones who really didn't understand what SWG was trying to achieve--just saw it as a game, not an immersive experience. They were hardcore achievers, twinks, griefers and FPS clans: a demographic SOE liked a whole lot better than the good people who were drawn to SWG. And, as a result, they started to warp development to placate their interests at the expense of any other interest.
Perhaps the most obscene thing that SOE did, for me, wasn't the NGE. The NGE was just the natural extension of what was occuring all along, and it started with AFK. It started when they changed the language of the TOS rule against AFK to apply to combat, but not entertainers. That was, for me at least, the start of a whole series of decisions that ruined this game.
Soon after the ents, they came after the crafters. Contrary to popular belief, this started to become a loot-based game long before the NGE. The economy started to become dictated by high level combat campers who started pulling skilltapes out of the POIs. The most highly sought after armor was dropped as loot, and uncraftable (BH and Mando). You'd have mind DOT blasters and knives that fetched such extreme prices, they had to sell them on the forums, rather than the bazaar.
Then they came after the creature handlers with the nerfs you mentioned. Then they came after the factioneers, nerfing their faction perks. Then the CU came and pretty much destroyed the notion of multiclassing, since non-combat profs couldn't reach the max combat level. It also destroyed a lot of the ambiance that drew the majority of people to SWG...but this was alright, from SOE's calculation. Their target audience didn't care about ambiance, only loot, powerlevelling, instant action, and Ventrillo.
I didn't even go into the whole politics behind the Jedi aspect of pre-NGE, but this is something that pretty much everyone knows. It's much more important for me to make sure all of the other developments are retold, so that we understand the importance of them. People played professions like musician, or ranger, or architecht, or droid engineer, or tailor, or ID. Not only that, but people loved these professions. People loved surveying, or playing the sliterhorn live and at the keys in the cantina, or camping out on Talus. The fact that the majority (whether an actual or perceived majority) didn't see the point doesn't mean the fun wasn't there.
But when they took away the purpose of these professions, they also took away the purpose of these players (not professions) in the game. They said, "We'll take your box fee and sub fee, but it isn't like we really want you here." This is what happened all throughout the pre-CU and pre-NGE era. The NGE was just the icing on the cake, as far as I'm concerned.
__________________________"Its sad when people use religion to feel superior, its even worse to see people using a video game to do it."--Arcken
"...when it comes to pimping EVE I have little restraints."--Hellmar, CEO of CCP.
"It's like they took a gun, put it to their nugget sack and pulled the trigger over and over again, each time telling us how great it was that they were shooting themselves in the balls."--Exar_Kun on SWG's NGE