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Star Wars: The Old Republic: Rich Vogel Out at BioWare, Additional Layoffs Rumored

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  • Garvon3Garvon3 Worcester, MAPosts: 2,898Member
    Originally posted by Gdemami

     


    Originally posted by faefrost

    The game is now and will always be a huge sucking hole of red ink on the balance sheets. It's so big that they will keep it going, at least for now, just to try and reduce the losses.

     

    Talking about accounting, you do not reduce losses by running in red numbers...so just you know..

    They're trying real hard to make SWTOR at least run a profit so that maybe, 6 years from now, MAYBE they'll have broken even.

  • TalonsinTalonsin Posts: 1,468Member Uncommon

    It really revolves around your definition of fail.  Is the game earning as much as they predicted, nope.  Did they retain the number of subscribers they hoped for, nope.  Did it beat WoW, nope.  Was spending over 6 years and 150 million dollars worth the effort when compared to spending 50 million and 4 years when you compare the revenue from ToR vs something like TSW or Rift.

     

    From a business perspective, I can tell you if I was running EA, I would be doing the same thing.  I would be firing several high level project managers who made decisions on the direction of the game, reduce the staff who supports it and see if I can get the cost to maintain the game below the revenue it brings in over the course of the next 6 to 10 months.  If I couldnt, I would scrape it.  Throwing good money after bad has very rarely worked. 

     

    The F2P model used to be much better back in the day when the only thing that was F2P was asian crap-tastic games.  People quoting how LOTRO and DND made money going F2P dont realize the competition was very weak at the time and played a major role in the additional revenue.  Today, there are so many good F2P games out there that going F2P is not a guaranteed profit maker any longer.  The current F2P games have started to gouge players like in STO where you have to pay to get a key to open a lockbox with the good drops

  • tryklontryklon PortoPosts: 1,370Member Uncommon

    I disagree with the F2P model all the way, but im an avid fan of a B2P model, much like Guild Wars always followed and will continue on Guild Wars 2, make the game free from monthly fees but keep the boxes on the stores for 50 bucks/euros and throw in a good real money store with nice items that don't affect the gameplay... ill be a happy customer

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  • Xstatic912Xstatic912 New York, NYPosts: 365Member
    That's what greed cause.. Yes you want a piece of the mmo market, but make a compelling product at best..

    Plus you (Ea) got pimped by Lucas for the star wars license, thinking the name alone will be enough, there is a reason most mmo dev's don't use others IP because if it doesn't work, the dev's suffer greatly while the IP owner already profited..

    Hope you learn (even though I doubt it), because in all honesty I think this game and it's quick release was aim at getting back the cash you put into it then hope for the best...

    if the 23% drop in sub they had in May rolls over to the coming months, after the heavy hitters come out, then probably next stop is F2P if they can't meet there "500k minimum sub needed to make a profit" goal...
  • OzmodanOzmodan Hilliard, OHPosts: 7,183Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by hikaru77

    The hate around swtor is just epic, and mostly from people who is not even playing the game. http://www.vgchartz.com/game/31584/star-wars-the-old-republic/  over 2.37 mill of copies, probably more than 3 mill by the end of the year, just a quiestion for all the people talking about the fail of swtor, how many p2p MMO had sold over 1 mill of copies in 6 months after launch in the last 10 years? no talking about WoW.

    Does not make a difference how many licenses you sell in a subscription MMO, it is how many you KEEP playing!

    Of course SWTOR is keeping very few and those that are left are dropping fast.

  • VorthanionVorthanion Laguna Vista, TXPosts: 2,117Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by SaintPhilip
    Originally posted by Gdemami

     


    Originally posted by SaintPhilip

    Normally I think people who make statements like yours are just paranoid -  Now, I am not so sure- looks kinda odd huh?

     

    Considering your recent posts, I do not find it odd at all, that also sums up my reply to your post above...

    Which recent post(s) would those be? We are discussing a FAILED game which has spent an estimated 300 million and has closed 75% of its servers within six months... But humor me- Since I post about pretty much every game and every topic I find interesting (in this case the FAILURE of an overhyped game) what do you mean.

    But back to the game- You never answered my question- Is success merging servers and firing staff so early on? Not to me- My opinion (as stated) s this was a poor excuse at a money geab by an incompetent company known forterrible MMOs- But the Fact is, good or Bad it is failing. Yes or No?

    They haven't closed a single server yet bud.  They're still in the process of voluntary transfers.  They will be starting the mandatory transfers sometime at the end of summer.  There are still more than 500k subscribers at the moment, they could put that on one server and it would still be considered a very successful game with very nice income.

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  • BardusBardus Cornet, ALPosts: 460Member
    Originally posted by Xstatic912
    That's what greed cause.. Yes you want a piece of the mmo market, but make a compelling product at best..

    Plus you (Ea) got pimped by Lucas for the star wars license, thinking the name alone will be enough, there is a reason most mmo dev's don't use others IP because if it doesn't work, the dev's suffer greatly while the IP owner already profited..

    Hope you learn (even though I doubt it), because in all honesty I think this game and it's quick release was aim at getting back the cash you put into it then hope for the best...

    if the 23% drop in sub they had in May rolls over to the coming months, after the heavy hitters come out, then probably next stop is F2P if they can't meet there "500k minimum sub needed to make a profit" goal...


    If this game was what all those people thought and was told this game will be then we wouldn't be having this conversation because they will still be paying that monthly fee. Obviously that isn't happening. 

    Didn't the game sell 2.3 million copies before and at launch? We're coming on 8 months so what is the total now? Should be a lot more than 2.37million but is it? EA is real good at bragging when its' going good like they were not shy at all to say how many they sold early but I haven't seen a word on post launch sales.

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  • tawesstawess LkpgPosts: 2,535Member Uncommon

    About the servers... Anyone with a lick of sense knew from day one thatt hey woudl have to sooner or later close servers as they popped them out way way to fast since the impatient (wo)man-children of today can not handle a que time at all. They simply opend more servers then they needed so it is not a "sign of doom" that they do. Even if they had retained the most optimistic number of players (nobody in the biz expects a 100% retention rate) they woudl have had to move people and close servers as some servers were simply too low pop to begin with. Now that being said it is obvious that the community is much smaller then they projected and i think that is much due to the sort of split personality of the game, it is not a top notch SP game and it is not a top notch MMO... And each part scare the other side away.

     

    That being said the game is still well made and if you have a older GFX card it looks about as a good as TSW or GW2. Animations are good and ofc the sound/audio/voice is top notch. Maybe it woudl have been nice to have a bit more variety in NPC's(if i see another military dude using the bulk body i will cry)  but that is a minor complaint. And like it or not... the story for the two classes i have actually moved up (consular/smuggler) is very enjoyable.. sure the replay value is crap and it will be very boring to level up another one (my biggest pet peeve, some thing iam forced to as you are locked in to your chooice of specialization for good no dual-spec Sage/shadow for me)

  • william0532william0532 portland, ORPosts: 251Member

    Thats too bad, I liked Vogel. I wish him the best of luck. Also Georg Zoeller(not sure if hes been laid off, but rumor has it), I disagreed with pretty much everything he said, but the ahole way he said it, made me like him lol for having his opinion and being staunch.

     

    I hope they find work.

  • daltaniousdaltanious waPosts: 2,144Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by SaintPhilip
    Originally posted by Vorthanion
    Originally posted by SaintPhilip
    Originally posted by daltanious
    Originally posted by dotdotdash

    This is what happens when you fail to make a good game.

    Never in my life (50 currently) have played better and more polished and bugfree game with good performance all maxed out. Everything is there, immersion, incredible natural movement of avatars, complex, incredible twists in class quests, fun abilities where nearly every one have use, there is no blind button mashing, .... playing since day 1 and I still log back every day to my 16 alts. Tried virtually all there ... but found only 3 games so far worth every penny of sub, wow, rift and now swtor.

    However i can not judge for pvp or end game as I could not care less. Guess many are not happy there.

    Are you joking? You cannot be for real- If you are I appologize and respect your opinion BUT thats a statement I find suspect. How many MMOs have you played?

    I am not discounting your opinion if you really feel this way- We all have different tastes but...

    I agree with him and completely disagree with you, guess that makes you the delusional one, huh?

    Nobody said anything about delusional-

    Dude said hes 50 years old and this is rthe greatest game he has ever played- I asked if he was serious? Games a failure in my eyes and most other peoples - If that weere not the case then we wouldnt be having discussions each week about server merges and layoffs.

    Games not a trainwreck (never said that)- But to equate it to the greatest game ever made is a very odd statement IMHO- Game is horrible IMO. 

    You mean how many have played since pacman or original prince of persia era? :-) A lot. Also a lot on PS and PS2. And I guess all mmo, some only up to expiration of free time or even few days only (TR i.e.). Was completely non fun for me. But for this I have not been bashing game on all forums after stopped to play. It looks to me like hate comunity have developed even much faster then that of wow. I have played even nightmares like Rappelz (actually ... was not so bad if not for impossible lag and money sucking apart that "free"). Have endured for months even with Aoc and War and even CO, despite crippling bugs. Despite all I enjoyed them for some time. I endured despite many left, they could not handle any more.

    So ... EXACTLY WHAT is so bad about SWTOR that you hate so deeply,  that you (and others) at it looks you obviusly do not play for long (if ever) is so terrible that you must spend so much time bashing it? I.e. once TR or Rappelz or War ... were dead end for me ... i never bothered again in any forum, not even following. 

    I have LISTED one by one why I love so much SWTOR and why keeps me for aprox 7 months now to log in every single day, from half hour maybe because of time schedule or 16 hours on weekends. As I understand from some other forums major down is pvp and endgame, two parts of any game I could not care less.

    Could be I'm infulenced by lore as I always loved sw series since first movie released ... but I'm sure would enjoy same.

    Game for me is most perfect up to date. And I'm not trolling.

  • MalcanisMalcanis LondonPosts: 3,191Member
    Originally posted by Talonsin

     

    The F2P model used to be much better back in the day when the only thing that was F2P was asian crap-tastic games.  People quoting how LOTRO and DND made money going F2P dont realize the competition was very weak at the time and played a major role in the additional revenue.  Today, there are so many good F2P games out there that going F2P is not a guaranteed profit maker any longer.  The current F2P games have started to gouge players like in STO where you have to pay to get a key to open a lockbox with the good drops

    I think this is an extremely good point. Thanks, Talonsin, I will remember this...

    Give me liberty or give me lasers

  • DeeweDeewe Long Beach, CAPosts: 1,965Member
    Originally posted by Malcanis
    Originally posted by Talonsin

     

    The F2P model used to be much better back in the day when the only thing that was F2P was asian crap-tastic games.  People quoting how LOTRO and DND made money going F2P dont realize the competition was very weak at the time and played a major role in the additional revenue.  Today, there are so many good F2P games out there that going F2P is not a guaranteed profit maker any longer.  The current F2P games have started to gouge players like in STO where you have to pay to get a key to open a lockbox with the good drops

    I think this is an extremely good point. Thanks, Talonsin, I will remember this...

    Another point: DDO and LotRo launched F2P on top of highly polished MMO wheter you like the gameplay or setting.

     

    TOR is missing many AAA MMO features and isn't as much evenly polished. For example they don't even get the shadows right.

  • daltaniousdaltanious waPosts: 2,144Member Uncommon
     
  • illutianillutian There, OHPosts: 217Member Uncommon

    Don't know why people are surprised...

     

    SWTOR was just WoW "2.0" with Star Wars theme.

     

    Why would anyone use the craptastic HeroEngine (even if it's heavily modified).

     

    Couple that with the PIECE OF SHIT 'mobile authenticator', which breaks if you remove the battery, at the time they hadn't yet made the keychain availible so it was either risk account crack (since it's brute force, and not actually 'hacking') or get the mobile key gen.

    So 'yay!' I get to spend ~2hrs on hold, plus another hour explaining why I had to pull the battery because my phone locked up. Then convence them that it's really me, then order a keychain-because apparently you can't re-enter the Mobile App's SN (look it up).

    All to play a game that after the "Ooooo, Star Wars!" feel rubbed off left me going "I am playing WoW with better graphics."

    "Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising everytime we fall." - Confucius

  • XeridianXeridian Dallas, TXPosts: 22Member
    Originally posted by Karteli
    Originally posted by Denambren

    I knew this game was destined for failure when:

     

    1) Got invited to beta that apparently would start in a week

    2) Downloaded the 30+ gig beta client two days before the event, to be sure I got the relatively "newest" version

    3) Got a message from EA-Bioware on the evening of the beta (it was scheduled to only start in the evening) that the 30+ gig beta client was corrupt and that all beta testers must now download a new 30+ gig beta client. Beta is rescheduled to a few days later.

     

    A corrupted beta client sitting on their server for download for a entire week, left unchecked/tested until the day of the beta.

    Even though I hadn't seen the game yet, my heart sank with the knowledge that only an amateur dev team could make that kind of mistake.

    Glad you remembered that .. I remember it too!

     

    Originally posted by Grotar89

    Where are TOR fanboys now? When I said before release this game will fail hard and GW2 will own it in every possible way ppl laughed.

    WELL, Who is laughing now !!!!???

    You fail to realize that TOR fan does not equal GW2 fan.  I personally don't like GW2's P2W system with potions (+ attack, +def) or whatever, if they go through with that.  There will be a rebuttle to this, but it still exists.  WoW never had this, and thats a good marker.

     

    edit:

    I got a nudge from a friend that everyone can obtain these buffs (without spending RL money), but it will take a lot of time.  Take a lot of time for a buff to be competitive with PVE or just buy them... WTF.  I do understand that they can't be used in PVP, which might be a minior blessing.

    The whole idea of freaking buying buffs instead of playing for them is f'd up from the start.  I don't like this.

     

    WTF are you babbling about? GW2 is not PTW and uses no potions whatsoever... You need your eyes, ears and head examined. Also, i told people that BioWare was Doomed when EA aquired them. Then the very next game DA2 was a departure from the 1st it was a given it would be a sinking ship, then SWTOR was announced and i knew it was the end since BioWare HATED LA with a passion after dealing with them on KOTOR and vowed never to work with them again, EA forced their hand and they had EA and LA breathing down the neckholes. I feel so bad for BioWare as a long time fan of their Genius. But when they left Atari for EA (Eats Artists) it was the poison in the ptcher... Game Over BW... RIP it's a very sad day. 

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  • ajac09ajac09 norman, OKPosts: 13Member

    so do not agree the game was decent but not worth the monthly fee. Needs just to go free to play.

  • IllyssiaIllyssia LondonPosts: 1,524Member

    Most of the free 2 play games have cash shop to generate money post-box/dowload purchase.

  • SwampRobSwampRob Halifax, NSPosts: 1,008Member
    Originally posted by Yuui
     Originally posted by dotdotdash

    This is what happens when you fail to make a good game.

    This is what happens when you take an awesome rpg franchise like KOTOR, alienate the fanbase, throw around ego-filled comments like "TOR will be KOTOR 3 4 5 6 and so on in one!"  and decide its a great idea to bastardize one of your most succesful franchises into a cheap mmo, instead of delivering the most awaited third part of the franchise  :)

    This.

    I adored KOTOR 1 and 2, and was very pumped for KOTOR 3.   It still had some of the charm of it's predecessors, but locked itself into MMO mechanics.    Grouping should be 100% optional for EVERYTHING in that game.    Let us take multiple companions with us, like the original games did, instead of mandating with team with others.    Grouping should be an option, not a requirement for this title.

    That's really what killed it for me.

     

     

  • FeriteKnightFeriteKnight Chilliwack, BCPosts: 5Member

    None of this surprises me. I refused beta when I saw the direction the game was going at that point that it was offered to me, (along with a cursory read of the beta req. which made it seem like an application for a second job), and decided not to play at release when I looked and saw things hadn't changed except for the worse.

    Whether or not Lucas Arts sticks its nose in and tries to mangle another NGE on a Star Wars game platform or not doesn't matter. The simple fact is, they built SWtOR on a false premise of being a true to cannon Star Wars MMO, when actually it was a cartoony offshoot of 'that other game' which focused on bright colors and flashy effects to draw them in.

    Star Wars is dark and heroic, not some flashy, super-bright whatever that is. There's more to characters than simple black and white class allocations, and there's more to the story than grinding for loot and buying it if it takes too long to get it the 'normal' way.

    Far from normal, looting decent treasure in game these days, and for some time now. I'm beginning to believe that the developers staged this whole transition to free-2-play need demanded by the generation of the day, just so they could make money looting our wallets while they made it harder for us to aquire things simply in game.

    Has anyone else noticed that the reward system of games has been deteriorating since before the big mmo crash that made f2p a viable alternative according to developers? Maybe it's just me.

    I like to play a hero in game, and while I like a chaleenge, I don't like to die much. Call me funny, but it's not very heroic. Dying.

    I like to customize my own toys, fly my space ships, and wreak absolute havoc on the ne-er-do-wells and villians of the game world. SWtOR and other MMO games don't offer that, but single player games quite often do to one degree or another. Of course, some of them are rediculously hard too and involve as much grinding as any MMO.

    I need to have my weapons and equipment as I need them in game; not some days or weeks later while I've been held up by the grind of crafting, looting, redundant re-questing, and all the rest of that unpleasant melodrama.

    ..or, after I've spent some hundred dollars buying crafting ingredients just so I can combine them into useless trinkets to gain the experience to make even more useless trinkets, so I might one day actually make something useful. Make that hundreds of dollars.

    I have spent $150 just on crafting this month, just so I can gain the experience to craft an item that is not even remotely equal to my level, but is slightly better than what I had, while being so much less that some random drop, (that might actually suit me and my playstyle), I never get.

    That's not including subscription service of course, (which the game has), because I don't feel like paying to be a VIP for a month just so I can lose everything the month I decide not too pay. Frankly, if I'm going to be paying for a free2play game, I'd rather own the content I use, than pay for the priviledge of using it just so I can lose it.

    Unfortunately, that also means I spend a bit more up front, but then I never thought I'd be spending a heap more just play the game anyway. Subscription or not, crafting isn't free, and the materials certainly don't drop in quantity in game. In fact, I could probably level 5 characters to max and not be where I am now in terms of collected mats for crafting, with respect to what I've used.

    Level 10 characters to max on top of that, and I might have enough additional materials to craft one item for the latest max level character that actually suits his/her level.

    The irony, is that these items crafted are so much less than those that drop early in the game in terms of power. If anything I picked up was even remotely useful, I'd be doing well without ever touching the crafting aspect of the game. Of course, I still wouldn't get enough other drops to keep those items from potential destruction in the course of gameplay.

    SWtOR follows similar practices I believe, (or so I've heard), combining subs with paid add-ons or some such, which doesn't really matter to me so much as the fact that they ruined the whole genre. Choose a side is way too much. If I'm a Bounty hunter, I'll choose when I like; more importantly, I'll choose.

    Had I the opportunity, (and retained the interest past reading the forums early beta), I would have opted to make a Bounty hunter that worked for the Republic almoist exclusively, with some short term lucrative contracts on the side for non-imperial interests. Why would I ever work for the Empire?

    Doesn't mean I wouldn't be a Bounty Hunter just for fun. I have an issue with playing Jedi the way they're portrayed too, so I'm much more suited to something else generally speaking. Smuggler and Trooper were really the only options left.

    So, either way, it's not like I would bother to look again if they did make a change.

  • GorillaGorilla Posts: 2,202Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by unfettered

    Originally posted by dotdotdash
    This is what happens when you fail to make a good game.

    not true(or not so simple). this is what happens when you spend a boatload making a not so good game, respond unfavorably to tester feedback, don't have endgame tested, keep up a NDA till a month before launch, release patches untested, don't use your test servers until after half your players quit for good, and then hype every patch while only at best 50% of what you promised actually makes it live.

     

    Ok, so this is what happens when you fail to make a good game, fail to fix it in a timely fashion, fail to manage it well and fail to treat your customers well.

    Not a bad game but mediocre isn't good enough really.
  • DaduHulkDaduHulk Miami, FLPosts: 28Member

    For what is worth, I still subscribe, I still play, and haven't run out of worlds and story lines to explore. To each is own I guess. After doing 2 Sith and 2 Jedi toons, I am back to Sith on an Imperial Agent. A great fun for me is growing a toon for 1 to 50. And the story line is sooo different, and the game play (guns/ranged vs lightsabers) that it has me totally ocupied (6 to 8 hrs / day). The new LFG tool is helping, as did the server consolidation (more players around to play with, easier to team up). Maybe the game is not everything PvPers want, but I don't PvP so I would not know.

     

    All that said, I am sad to see more staff go and hope the game will stay around for a while since I am not done exploring what is offered. In the meantime, I already got my GW2 ordered and if anything will move me off SWTOR would be a severe GW2 addiction. :)

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