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SWTOR - A victim of escalation of commitment?



  • tiefighter25tiefighter25 Winchester, MAPosts: 937Member
    Originally posted by lizardbones


    I thought the game play was exactly like the videos I saw. Most of the videos cut out the VO content to eliminate spoilers so what was left was the game play and it looked exactly like what I got.


    I guess  you were more diligent then most people who bought the game having only seen the CGI trailers. To be fair all companies do this, to a certain extent, but SWTOR was the first company who's marketing campaign I saw in mainstream media for a new game launch. I dont recall seeing actual game play for more then a few quick seconds sliced into promo developer interviews. That's of course just my personal experience.

  • Creslin321Creslin321 Baltimore, MDPosts: 5,359Member
    Originally posted by Gdemami


    Originally posted by Creslin321

    My OP was pretty clear that the voice acting was just part of


    Where are the other parts?


    Originally posted by Creslin321

    For example, myself, and many others brought up the concern that BW"s strategy of making "fully voiced" a flagship feature of the game was problematic in the long-term because it would make creating additional content very cost prohibitive...and in a subscription themepark MMORPG that lives and breathes on content additions...this is not a good thing.  And now we hear that (surprise surprise) SWTOR's additional content won't be fully voiced.


    You only talk and give credit to voice overs as a feature, no word about anything else.

    You even admit it yourself:


    Originally posted by Creslin321

    I know I only spoke of voice overs in my OP


    Backpedaling is bad but there is no need pushing it further and making it even more ridiculous.

    LOL I'm really not going to bother anymore.  Almost every single person in this thread disagrees with you, that should tell you something.  Either we are all morons, or maybe you are wrong.

    Are you team Azeroth, team Tyria, or team Jacob?

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member
    Originally posted by Creslin321

    First, a definition.  Escalation of commitment occurs when a group is working on a project, and at some point in the project it becomes clear that things aren't going well or maybe even the project's original direction is fundamentally flawed, but instead of stepping back and rethinking things, the group just throws more resources at the project in the hope that things will just "work out."  This may sound stupid, but it's a relatively common problem.  When a group has worked on a project for a long time and invested a lot of resources, sometimes it's tough to admit that mistakes were made early on and rethink can be much easier in the short term to just try to "power through" your difficulties by escalating your commitment to the project.

    Now onto SWTOR....

    The more I look at SWTOR, the problems it's having, and the solutions that its devs are proposing...the more I think that it was a victim of escalation of commitment.  For example, myself, and many others brought up the concern that BW"s strategy of making "fully voiced" a flagship feature of the game was problematic in the long-term because it would make creating additional content very cost prohibitive...and in a subscription themepark MMORPG that lives and breathes on content additions...this is not a good thing.  And now we hear that (surprise surprise) SWTOR's additional content won't be fully voiced.

    I really think that at some point during SWTOR's development, its management had to realize at least on some level that this was a big potential problem.  But instead of stepping back and rethinking things, they just threw more and more resources at the game and plowed forward.

    The same can really be said for many of SWTOR's shortcomings such as the single player space combat, the gameplay that apes WoW just a bit too much, and the really half-assed open world PvP.  I really feel like at some point in the middle of the project, the devs probably realized that these ideas were all not as good as they seemed at the onset of the project, but basically just chose to plow forward with a flawed concept instead of stepping back and rethinking things.

    In the end, I really think SWTOR would have been better off with a more iterative development process.  All of these systems and ideas should have been prototyped and thoroughly tested, with the knowledge that if it doesn't work, it will be scrapped.  And I think this is important...devs really need to be willing to scrap their ideas if they turn out to not work once you see them "in game."  But I feel like with SWTOR, the developer just plowed forward with their original ideas regardless of if they "worked" or not.


    Problem gets really exacerbated when your dealing with executive management, especialy at public companies. Those folks are put in the positions they are because they are supposed to know how to lead the companies to success. The dirty truth is most of them are actualy pretty clueless about many of the things which are central to what the company does. They are often even pretty clueless basic leadership skills. They may have some expertiese in a specific area like finance, marketing or sales.... but thier primary skills tend to be self-promotion.... i.e. selling thier own self image to others like stockholders, investors and board members. In terms of design,  most of them wouldn't know a quality design from a piss poor one if it dropped on thier head.....even if the company only makes one product.

    That would be ok in itself...the person at the executive level doesn't really  need to know the details of designing something. For the ones who have REAL leadership skills, they can easly work around that. They know thier limitations, they put together a team of people who they trust and trust each other and they delegate to decision making to people who have the experiese to make it. They get the team working together toward a common goal. That's real leadership.

    The problem is that real leadership is actualy pretty rare at the executive level. The ones who have it, are definately worth alot. What's far more common at the executive level...again especialy at public expertiese at SELF-PROMOTION. Contrary to the leader...the self-promotion expert CAN'T acknowledge thier own limitations. It runs CONTRARY to thier nature.... contrary to how they got in the postion in the first place. By nature, they are adverse to ackowledging areas of deficiency in thier own knowldge, lapses of judgement or mistakes. This extends also to not allowing thier TEAMS to back-track, admit mistakes or rethink direction.... because they believe that reflects poorly on THEM as leaders, as they were the ones who picked and managed the team afterall.

    This can lead to a pretty fatal such executives often try to intefere in much lower level decisions (micro-manage)  which they aren't equiped to make.... because they need to try to establish the PERCEPTION that they are experts in all areas of the organizations functions.....and when things do start to go wrong, they are unwilling to admit it...even internaly among thier own TEAMS.....and especialy they are unwilling to allow anything that might foster the PUBLIC perception that the TEAM is back-tracking on a decision or changing course because there is something wrong. That often leads to just the situation that Creslin described..... throwing more and more resources at something which clearly isn't working well in the hopes that brute force and expenditure of resources will get it to work, rather then admit the problem. Of course, that only reinforces the motivation to avoid acknowledging the problem or changing course...because now there is even more invested in the existing course.

    I honestly think ALOT of failed projects/designs/products can be attributed to that factor.

  • EllieAnneEllieAnne Seattle, WAPosts: 23Member

    What Bioware is doing now shows the inherent contradiction in SWTOR.  So much focus is put on the class storyline but most of the game is grinding the same quests alt after alt (because why wouldn't you play out all 8 storylines?), ridiculous PvP areas, solitary space missions  and flashpoints.  So is it a storyline based MMO or a glorified solofest?  If it is about storylines, then why not have race-based quests too?  Have your Twi'lek discover the truth about the forced migration.  Have your purebred Sith get involved with throwing off their human oppressors. Instead, BW is about adding more of what we don't want in the game.

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