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Sad to say, this is effectively a single player game now

markyturnipmarkyturnip Member UncommonPosts: 837

 

 

Let me preface by saying: I like this game a lot. I think its combat is, even with bugs, the best of any mmo on the market right now. There are many other strong reasons to play this game.

But wandering around the zones today, I realised that an already low pop has tanked from underpopulated to effectively empty. Within a month of launch this is very sad.

The reality is, that apart from a few moments here and there (fight for the demon chest) you will barely ever see another player beyond the first 2-3 zones. I would be surprised to learn that there were more than a couple of hundred subscribers right now.

What a shame, and what a failure on Acclaim's part. This really is a good game, and yet Acclaim seems to have completely dropped the ball - poor marketing, payment issues etc. The devs I feel some sympathy for, although their failure to fix basic combat bugs is growing less forgiveable with every week that passes, and the failure to complete inter house pvp mechanics is a disaster - that was the hook that would keep people playing.

I feel genuinely sad about this... finally, an innovative game with a compelling world, great combat, and interesting classes; no gear grind, well written quest texts, some very fun plot-driven events. And a great set up for interesting pvp.

Here are some thoughts I had on potential reasons for this good game going to waste -

a) Bugs? Perhaps... although i do not think that they are that much worse than any other game's at this stage, and the combat is still fun. That said, the incredibly long list of abilities that do not work as described is very irritating - and becomes more so as time goes on.

b) Poor starter experience? Will have contributed. Five kill boar quests in a row was a dreadful idea... they should have sent you to town MUCH more quickly, do the murder mystery wonder round the houses... and the tutorial is awful awful

c) Skill deck too complex? Sadly, many people wont have understood it. Those who do, realise its about the best combat system in the world of MMOs right now. It's just that great. But most people wont give it enough time.

d) No gear grind. People are so mind-numbed by wow, that they cannot understand that you don't get loot with stats. Personally,I think this is one of the greatest features of this game, but it transpires that the majority of people are so trained to expect a gear hamster treadmill that untraining them may be too hard..

e) Bad customer service. The while fiasco over the cancel button and cc card payments is a real disgrace. No excuses from Accalim here. I think this may have done a lot to wreck the chances of this game, and Acclaim should be ashamed of itself.

f) Poor marketing? I am in two minds about this. I quite liked the lack of hype, and they are working on mmorpg.com and others quite well. The two week free trial is what got me involved, so it was useful. Developer webinars are cool.

But so many chances have been missed. Metacritic still does not allow reviews of the game because 'it is not released'. That is a terrible mistake. Metacritic is god. Where is the G4TV interview? Why is this not on Steam? etc etc The gamer blogs hardly touched it. The ball was dropped on marketing, I think.

g) Incomplete inter-house pvp features. This was a very bad mistake, imo. A compelling narrative surrounding the battle between houses would have kept people in game. PVP is the best part of TCOS. The factions are nicely conceived. But its all dressed up with no place to go. They really should have got this in at launch.

i) Lag. This is another killer - although personally I have not felt it so badly as others seem to. This game revolves around its great combat - but if that is falling apart because of server-side issues, that is a death knell. What happened here?

 

 

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Comments

  • Daffid011Daffid011 Member UncommonPosts: 7,945

    I have never seen such a quiet release of an mmo, ever.  It is almost like acclaim is trying to keep this game a secret or something. 

  • SynthetickSynthetick Member Posts: 977

    Regardless of my issues with the game it is sad that it died off so fast. It looked so promising during development. I was really hoping for a different experience, tho. Not in terms of the combat system, or character progression even, but in terms of leveling options and general gameplay flavor. There was just too many kill and delivery quests when I was hoping for more of a diversified approach and more content aside from your typical quests. Exarch was a nice start, but it should of been there ;the Euro launch, if you ask me, and multiple other encounters similar added by now.



    Even tho it didn't deliver what I wanted, still is sad.

     

    image

  • WraithoneWraithone Member RarePosts: 3,803

    I understand exactly what you mean. The NA game is effectively a ghost town now. The combat system is nice, but as you stated, it may be too complex for most people, and little attempt was made to teach players how to really use it.  I've liked this game from the start, but I've had a bad feeling as well. I've seen this happen to several games now. Saga of Ryzom and Horizons to name just two. As for Acclaim... They can't seem to be bothered to put any real effort in to the game. Look at how long it took to get something as simple as a credit card payment system in place.  With all of the time, talent and money the Dev's put in to this game, why in the world did they pick Acclaim in the first place??

    "If you can't kill it, don't make it mad."
  • DeathreatDeathreat Member UncommonPosts: 143

    One of the biggest reasons it died so fast is because they offered all the premium for free for two weeks stuff and everyone leveled for two weeks and once it went away, bam. Everyone forgot that the game was free to play untill level 7 and all those people for the first two weeks who were 8+ couldnt log in anymore without a sub. Pretty big reason to be pissed and rage quit.

  • brostynbrostyn Member Posts: 3,092

    I played for a bit, but it became fairly obvious there is nothing to this game aside from slaying mob after mob. There is no reason to even need gold.

  • MinoziMinozi Member Posts: 49

    Maybe you guys should wait with calling it dead until it actually "died"?

    The servers are still up, the population is increasing and im having quite a good time..

    this might be the EU-side tho

  • eyeswideopeneyeswideopen Member Posts: 2,414
    Originally posted by Deathreat


    One of the biggest reasons it died so fast is because they offered all the premium for free for two weeks stuff and everyone leveled for two weeks and once it went away, bam. Everyone forgot that the game was free to play untill level 7 and all those people for the first two weeks who were 8+ couldnt log in anymore without a sub. Pretty big reason to be pissed and rage quit.



     

    The free two weeks of premium did help kill interest, since people who played it realized that the game really was no different past level 7 and there was no reason to subscribe.

    -Letting Derek Smart work on your game is like letting Osama bin Laden work in the White House. Something will burn.-
    -And on the 8th day, man created God.-

  • TerranahTerranah Member UncommonPosts: 3,575

    I can appreciate the potential complexity of the skill deck,  but I would rather have the usual hotbar.  And all the dancing around and one click for one swing of the weapon was too much.  My hands got tired and started to hurt after awhile, which is why I quit first person shooters.

     

    In concept the game sounded interesting to me.  In practice I found it to be kind of boring.  But I could just be experiencing mmo burnout.

  • VrikaVrika Member EpicPosts: 6,342

     I quit because of lag, or bad hit detection, or whatever is the problem. The combat system seemed fun, but I just couldn't tolerate it more than a few kill quests that I was able to dodge but it was about avoiding something invisible, not about avoiding the enemy I was fighting.

     
  • WraithoneWraithone Member RarePosts: 3,803

     Thats true as well. After a few fights my wrists started to ache, and it just got more unpleasent from there.  The combat system is a nice idea, but in application it just doesn't work out for many people.  As I said, the NA servers seem like ghost towns now. Its too bad, as this could have been a good game if it had been handled properly.

    "If you can't kill it, don't make it mad."
  • BigdavoBigdavo Member UncommonPosts: 1,863

    Great game, hit lvl 33 and realised there is nothing interesting to do anymore. I unsubbed yesterday, gave all my gold and items to guildies. As I said my goodbyes to one he told me he was also quitting in a week (sub ending) and doesn't see the point to re-sub, he was lvl 40. The guild I joined is one of the largest on the server, a beta guild, most aren't active or have quit.

    A real shame, this game had/has great potential.

    O_o o_O

  • WizardryWizardry Member LegendaryPosts: 17,662

    I have played hundreds of games and i can tell ,VERY early into a game ,weather effort was spent on it or not.For myself COMBAT is the biggest thing,as that is pretty much what everyone does the most.First of all,i got the feeling of a F2P game as soon as i set foot in the game world.No matter ,i wanted to check out the combat.As far as effort,it felt like TCOS was done similar to a F2P game.

    First of all,i do not agree on the COMPLEX of the combat,IMO it was nothing close to complex at all.Having an annoying hotbar that limits the ease of selecting your abilities /spells,does not make it complex at all,anyone can setup the hotbar with ease,but why it is an annoying setup to say the least.

    The ONLY thing i found good about combat,was the ability to climb onto a rock and avoid being atttacked,that feature is pretty much non existant in most games.However,the mobs were all set on auto distance,soon as you hit a certain range,they ran away,it got to the point that it did not feel realistic at all,but like playing with bots.Yes i know they are bots,but you don't have to make them feel like they are.Try to get a mobs back,pretty hard,their AI was always the same,generic i guess is the word.

    There is not much this game could do to make it any different than all other games,so it should have at least made combat uniqe,without screwing with a hotbar,that was done with VERY little effort.Think about it this way,you have spent the time in the game to learn a new ability,but you cannot use it because the hotbar has not flipped around yet,,lmao ridiculous idea to say the least.The hotbar has not flipped,so you have forgotten how to use that ability?All games IMO have a VERY tough act to follow in FFXI's combat system,it blows the doors off of every game,but at least show something unique in combat[not hotbars].

    This is why TCOS did not make it,it did not appeal to the gear grinders,it does not appeal to the hardcore FFA'rs,it does not appeal to crafters and it does not surpass other combat systems,so really,why would anyone expect the game to make it big?

    Never forget 3 mile Island and never trust a government official or company spokesman.

  • avalon1000avalon1000 Member UncommonPosts: 790

    The game has great combat (I use a Logitech trackball so no wrist problem).  Some of the quests are innovative, but not enough of them.  The game gets old fast.  I never made it past level 16 and my duo partner made it to 26 before he just got bored.  It's sad cause there was so much potential.

     

    Here's what I found:

    -Quest exp is all over the place (hard quests can have low exp....easy ones can have high exp

    -The game gets too hard too fast for most intermediate and casual players

    -The music is great

    -The combat is unique

    -Too many bugs (client crashes and quest bugs)

    -Liked the fact that a quest NPC could attack you (really caught me off guard the first time)

    -Quests that are repetitive (boars and more boars)

    -Should have priced it special (like ($9.99 a month)

    -Lack of players (because of some of the above)

     

  • L0k1-L0k1- Member Posts: 240

    it's a nice game, but the developers screwed up with things like IP blocks and such. Sure they are no longer used, but at launch they crippled the game and an MMO sort of needs a substantial user base before it can grow and if that isn't even at launch, you're officially screwed IMO. :)

     

    also, what can you do at level 50? What sort of ENDGAME is there? Afaik ..... nothing! :/

  • HaizedHaized Member Posts: 31
    Originally posted by Wraithone


     Thats true as well. After a few fights my wrists started to ache, and it just got more unpleasent from there.  The combat system is a nice idea, but in application it just doesn't work out for many people.  As I said, the NA servers seem like ghost towns now. Its too bad, as this could have been a good game if it had been handled properly.

     

    You stole my avatar... how lame

  • DibdabsDibdabs Member RarePosts: 2,926
    Originally posted by markyturnip

    b) Poor starter experience? Will have contributed. Five kill boar quests in a row was a dreadful idea... they should have sent you to town MUCH more quickly, do the murder mystery wonder round the houses... and the tutorial is awful awful 

    That was what killed it stone dead for me.  Sheer, utter monotony.  I've never seen worse quests, ever.

    The combat 'skill deck' was indeed rather clever, but started off so simply and logically that a bunch of crappy "kill X boar quests" just plain and simply wasn't needed - the excuse that the boring quests were put in so that players could learn the ropes is sheer crap.  They're just BAD quests. 

    It wasn't as if you could skip the actual Tutorial when you created another character, which REALLY annoyed me.

    Loved the skill deck, hated the quests.

  • BarCrowBarCrow Member UncommonPosts: 2,195

    I really like the game..many aspects...all mentioned already. It's very clean looking out the gate. Not to many bugs ..so far ...for me. The main one is the "floating 5 ft off the floor" at times....which is not necessarily a bug. My main problem is the lag. It can run perfect in certain sections..outdoors...cities....populated...not populated...and lag like hell the next time..in the very same areas. I happened to change from a 9800gt to gtx275 OC.....no difference. So it is likely the server. I was told on chat that it was my card or to lower the settings. But I don't think the stylized graphics of  Spellborn, although nice, are not so amazing that my card would have a problem running it smoothly. It runs LoTRO ...maxed out DX10..at 60fps (the highest my crap 22'' Acer will refresh) and AoC DX9 the same(....the dx10 is good too but not optimal)

    ...it could also use a few more races (maybe classes..but definitely races)..no overkill..just a bit more Avatar variety.

  • levsixlevsix Member UncommonPosts: 363

    People berated me for saying this would be EXACTLY what would happen. Now it is true. I knew it would happen because I played through two phases of beta (pre-NA release/beta) and it went the exact same route.

    I posted it about it also on some other sites, explaining the population would thin out to nothingness and people went ape sh** on me. Well, it turned out to be true. I'm not gloating, I'm just saying that it was not exactly hard to see that this was going to happen. Acclaim does not help but I think that a big part of the problem also sits within the game itself.

    The game has no staying power despite a few neat aspects. It's far from crap but it does not do enough to separate itself  (beyond the combat system) and KEEP players interested. It's fun for a few weeks, maybe a bit more or less. That's about it. And that's exactly what an MMO can NOT  do if it expects to survive.

    I also agree that the quests were completely unoriginal and boring.

     

    Have a winner and don't go on a game over! Does your avatar make you powerful in real life? Check out the Mystical Enders gaming community. www.mysticalenders.com

  • KhaunsharKhaunshar Member UncommonPosts: 349

    Its sad, but I think this is the same thing that happened to Tabula Rasa. Its not a bad game, it does the basic stuff alright and has a few nice ideas here and there, but the MMORPG business right now basically consists of a mixture of game hoppers wanting HUGE, GREAT, AWESOME games to drag them from their old ones in which they feel bored, but comfortable, and die-hards firmly entrenched in their games or sub-groups (pvpers, raiders etc.) where they will not ever move out unless a new game beats their old one at its game.

    In that market, there is no place for "another one" which does everything fine, but nothing great, simply because it does not suck people in. The very same virtues that especially the casual crowd loves, stuff like non-addictive gameplay, easy gameplay, solo-centric, small-scope, is the stuff that everyone has anyway nowadays, and so people come over, see it, think "yeah, its nice, but I feel at home in WoW/LotRO/AoC, and its not THAT great really" and leaves.

    Nobody hates the game, nobody goes to great lengths to flame it, because nobody is passionate about it.

    This, I think, happens when Designers design by listening to the people that are, supposedly, right now the big market. Casual young male players with a relatively strong drive towards skill-based fast no-consequence PvP and soloability. On paper, there is much money to be had, but in reality, that crowd does not readily change games, and is fickle as hell anyway.

    As a MMO, you dont live on the casual game hoppers, you live on the fans, and without more than a solo-centric superfluos paper-thin gameplay, no matter how accessible and easy, you dont get fans, cause nobody really cares enough.

  • MelanaMelana Member Posts: 32

    it's still a great game and the community is very nice but the population is to low for a success.All new features added with patches were created for many people.But in this game there aren't many people (don't know really why) so the features have no sin :(

    i can't agree with people who say that the quests are boring or the game is too difficult.It isn't.there are a lot of funny quests too.and with a bit skill you can play this game solo.the battlesystem is the best i've ever seen.PvP is great too.

    only the marketing is bad.too many servers for a few players,No advertisement and no support.There are many bugs ingame but only one patch per month.That can't work.

     

    It's a wonderful an innovative mmorpg with an incompetent publisher and developer....

  • tamanendtamanend Member Posts: 11

    i dont have much kindness towards any of this game's publishers, whether its acclaim or frogster or mindscape, they're all dropping the ball.   

    what frustrates me is that none of the three publishers seem to be trying to capture the attention of what seems like a large number of MMO gamers out there who are dissatisfied with WoW-like mechanics in a game.  read any board here on mmorpg.com and the anti-WoW sentiment is just about everywhere.   

    spellborn - on paper - has just about everything going for it:  compelling game world, fun combat, strategy based skill deck building, a lack of being forced to hunt for gears, the ability to dress your character exactly how you want at any level, wonderful music, etc... 

    it boggles my mind that the three publishers responsible for monetizing this game cant figure out how to do it. 

    realistically, no.  spellborn is not for everyone.  but from the forums i read, and the general sense of discontent with the same-old that we've been treated to for the last few years, i cant imagine why spellborn isn't a very strong, healthy, niche game by now.  CCP has shown that niche games can thrive and pay the bills.  niche games can make money. 

    i mean, its there.  its free, ffs.  its fun.  and yet when i started talking about it to MMO-playing friends just a month ago, only 1 of 17 had ever heard of it.  (and that one loves WoW very much and hated spellborn's combat the moment he tried to hit his first boar...) 

    put the game on steam.  charge $15 and throw in the first month.  there are a lot of FPS gamers on steam who would enjoy what spellborn has to offer.  start up a blunt "its not WoW." web-ad campaign on MMO-centric sites.  hell, reach out to game-bloggers.  set them up with accounts and let them give it a go.  anything to get word of mouth going... 

    (sorry for the rant at the end.  one of my biggest peeves is wasting potential.)

  • JeroKaneJeroKane Member RarePosts: 6,279

    The biggest problem is that there isn't enough to do.

    PVP - what PVP? They finally opened one Arena. But it's just dueling now. The whole Arena ladder system is still not in place.

    The high houses have also been poorly implemented and hardly really fleshed out enough to make good use of it to create incentive to PVP.

    They were aiming at making crafting resources only available in PVP zones. Yet, the poor crafting implementation in wich hardly anyone bothers kills this last bit of incentive too.

     So basically there is still no incentive to PVP atm.

     

    PVE -  What PVE? So far they only added one Dungeon. All the others mentioned in early development still haven't been added.

    And with no gear grind.... no real crafting, no incentive for PVP, only one dungeon....

    What is there to do in this game?

    That is root to this problem, that they didn't manage to get this game into a finished state at release.

    And that is now going to be the downfal of this game. As they still need to do so much. It's going to take far far too long to get all that is still needed into the game within time, before litterly no one is left anymore. And that is a real shame.

    Cheers

  • mackdawg19mackdawg19 Member UncommonPosts: 842
    Originally posted by Guillermo197


    The biggest problem is that there isn't enough to do.
    PVP - what PVP? They finally opened one Arena. But it's just dueling now. The whole Arena ladder system is still not in place.
    The high houses have also been poorly implemented and hardly really fleshed out enough to make good use of it to create incentive to PVP.
    They were aiming at making crafting resources only available in PVP zones. Yet, the poor crafting implementation in wich hardly anyone bothers kills this last bit of incentive too.
     So basically there is still no incentive to PVP atm.
     
    PVE -  What PVE? So far they only added one Dungeon. All the others mentioned in early development still haven't been added.
    And with no gear grind.... no real crafting, no incentive for PVP, only one dungeon....
    What is there to do in this game?
    That is root to this problem, that they didn't manage to get this game into a finished state at release.
    And that is now going to be the downfal of this game. As they still need to do so much. It's going to take far far too long to get all that is still needed into the game within time, before litterly no one is left anymore. And that is a real shame.
    Cheers

     

    PvP is mostly in guild arena matches and the Demon Chest which has been actually rising in PvP action. Pve wise they have 3 instances you can do at this very moment which are AF, CoA, and Exarch. One instance was recently closed and is ToA located in Stonedeep.

    Locations:

    Demon Chest - under palace district

    AF - look for a board and some ruins right to the left of CoA instance entrance

    CoA - The huge temple in Green District with spiriling crap above it

    Exarch - take boat from Ringfell Hearth Glasspool lake area, need to complete a questline for passage

    Look for patch 1..5 coming sometime this month hopefully which introduces a whole new redesigned beginners area for hawksmouth with new quests, more skills to try out, and a redesined Adenvault area. Also tons of fixes for quests/skills and bugs in general. And the new quest tracker will be added along with other goodies. Probably some major enhancments to the arena also. You can read about the redesign and pics of the new Hawksmouth on the main TCoS page for acclaim. 

  • JeroKaneJeroKane Member RarePosts: 6,279
    Originally posted by mackdawg19


     
    PvP is mostly in guild arena matches and the Demon Chest which has been actually rising in PvP action. Pve wise they have 3 instances you can do at this very moment which are AF, CoA, and Exarch. One instance was recently closed and is ToA located in Stonedeep.
    Locations:
    Demon Chest - under palace district
    AF - look for a board and some ruins right to the left of CoA instance entrance
    CoA - The huge temple in Green District with spiriling crap above it
    Exarch - take boat from Ringfell Hearth Glasspool lake area, need to complete a questline for passage
    Look for patch 1..5 coming sometime this month hopefully which introduces a whole new redesigned beginners area for hawksmouth with new quests, more skills to try out, and a redesined Adenvault area. Also tons of fixes for quests/skills and bugs in general. And the new quest tracker will be added along with other goodies. Probably some major enhancments to the arena also. You can read about the redesign and pics of the new Hawksmouth on the main TCoS page for acclaim. 



     

    I have seen the patch 1.05 with the revamped starter area.

    But now so long since release (remember it released in part of EU over half a year ago) this will be just a little too late I am afraid.

    So many people have been put off from the game already and moved on.

    And with their total lack of Marketing, those people ain't coming back. Nor will it create a new surge of players either.

    Frogster has turned their back on us and is only interested in Asia.

    Mindscape are very inexperienced and complete idiots.

     And Aclaim ...well ....enough have been said about them already. Not to mention that they seem to be busy getting another new game released in NA called Darfall. ROFL.

    Cheers

  • WraithoneWraithone Member RarePosts: 3,803
    Originally posted by Guillermo197

    Originally posted by mackdawg19


     
    PvP is mostly in guild arena matches and the Demon Chest which has been actually rising in PvP action. Pve wise they have 3 instances you can do at this very moment which are AF, CoA, and Exarch. One instance was recently closed and is ToA located in Stonedeep.
    Locations:
    Demon Chest - under palace district
    AF - look for a board and some ruins right to the left of CoA instance entrance
    CoA - The huge temple in Green District with spiriling crap above it
    Exarch - take boat from Ringfell Hearth Glasspool lake area, need to complete a questline for passage
    Look for patch 1..5 coming sometime this month hopefully which introduces a whole new redesigned beginners area for hawksmouth with new quests, more skills to try out, and a redesined Adenvault area. Also tons of fixes for quests/skills and bugs in general. And the new quest tracker will be added along with other goodies. Probably some major enhancments to the arena also. You can read about the redesign and pics of the new Hawksmouth on the main TCoS page for acclaim. 



     

    I have seen the patch 1.05 with the revamped starter area.

    But now so long since release (remember it released in part of EU over half a year ago) this will be just a little too late I am afraid.

    So many people have been put off from the game already and moved on.

    And with their total lack of Marketing, those people ain't coming back. Nor will it create a new surge of players either.

    Frogster has turned their back on us and is only interested in Asia.

    Mindscape are very inexperienced and complete idiots.

     And Aclaim ...well ....enough have been said about them already. Not to mention that they seem to be busy getting another new game released in NA called Darfall. ROFL.

    Cheers

     

    LOL! Now I've heard everything... Acclaim and Gankfall richly deserve each other. Why am I not surprised in the least that Acclaim would be involved in a failing game like that?

    "If you can't kill it, don't make it mad."
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