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An Old Head Setting the Example

MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
So we've talked a lot over the past year around here about things said and interactions made between developers and gamers that garnered...  Mixed reactions.  Up til now, these discussion s had revolved around a dev making what many (myself included) would describe as unprofessional behavior in the face of unruly consumers (or not so unruly, in another case).  Now, I criticized those devs heavily, but I'm a firm believer that if you criticize a group for something, you should then praise that group if you see them doing exactly what you think is the right thing to do.

Enter a Mark Jacobs on a thread over on Massively OP.  In this thread, a player shared some criticism and then took some passive-aggressive (and some not so passive-aggressive) swipes at CU and CSE.  Like the professional he proclaims himself to be, MJ responded in what I would point to as a poster child for professionalism in the face of unfair criticism: with a firm but professional tone.

The topic of the MassivelyOP thread isn't the point of my thread here, so I'm only going to quote the initial posts from the poster and MJ's responses along with a link.

Poster guy: "I would be surprised if CSE shared 1/10 of information that SC team brings on weekly basis. Feels like its less than that.

No game is or ever was more transparent than SC."

MJ: "OC is partially correct that SC probably has shared more game information than we have simply because there is definitely more for them to share since *part* of their share involves selling things (OC, notice I just said “part”). OTOH, I think we are way more communicative in terms of things like livestreaming our team at work, talking on the Forums, chat, etc. with the key people at CSE. Chris and company do a lot of scripted livestreams but we also do an unscripted Q&A almost every single week that lasts for anything from 30 to 90 minutes.

So, in my mind SC and CSE *both* share a lot of information but we do it in different ways. Where Chris is wrong though is where he says nobody else is attempting to share as much as they do. We are and I wouldn’t be surprised if others are as well but he is certainly entitled to his opinion.

As always with me, there’s plenty of room for both of us (and others) to do things the right way when it comes to sharing information. Who does it better? Who knows? Sharing (or as c_c says below, signal vs. noise) is in the eyes of the beholder. :)

As always, I wish SC and their Backers the best of success. I hope it proves all the haters wrong, I truly do."

And later on, when the poster became less diplomatic:

Poster guy: "I feel like CU’s success will depend on how good and responsive combat will be, and how interesting class mechanics are. Not on paper, but in reality. Sadly for you Mark, these are probably the hardest things to nail in MMO development. If combat isnt fun, people wont play the game that is all about PvP combat. And all the massive battles tech will go to waste.

So no, your hardest part isnt behind, its ahead. Unless you want to tell us that brief combat example we saw is final version."

MJ: "OC, no, not really. The hardest thing is the tech if you want to have large-scale battles. Responsiveness is second because if the tech isn’t there, responsiveness won’t be there either. And to date, no MMORPG has been able to support 500+ players in a single battle (not server) while maintaining 30+ FPS.

In terms of the brief combat example, heavens no and we’ve said the exact same thing to date. Just like SC has said that older videos with placeholder combat isn’t the final version for them either.

You’re absolutely spot-on though that it’s hard but if the tech isn’t there to support it, it can’t be fun. OTOH, if the tech is there to support the designers vision AND the vision is true, then the game can have the possibility of delivering on its stated vision. Same thing with SC. Chris has laid out a vision for it that no other space-based game has ever had before. If its tech can’t support the vision, then the game won’t be as successful as it could have been right?"

And finally, MJ jumped back in when poster guy made this comment during a part of the discussion where folks compared the scales of the two crowdfunded MMORPG projects:

Poster guy: "The only thing where CSE scale is unbeatable is amount of videos where devs chit chat sitting on the coach."

MJ: "OC, one quick question, just one:

How many objects can interact in a networked SC battle?

If it isn’t 750, that’s one thing our Backers can see and be a part of during our tests that they can’t do in SC.

And our record is a lot higher, 3K headless clients as well as an additional number of spell effects and other objects. :)"

Poster guy (continuing this line of replies): "SC didnt beat you to it, but EVE did"

MJ: "Not real-time it didn’t OC. Eve’s space-battles are large-scale but they use time dilation to accomplish them. They are the equivalent of the slideshows that Dark Age had when we had battles of 900. We don’t do that. Our battles are real-time, no time dilation, necessary.

C’mon buddy, you knew that already and you didn’t answer the question I asked you. :)"

So I point this out independent of the topic because we have plenty of back and forth here regarding SC and that's not the point of my quoting the poster and MJ here.  Rather, if you will, focus on how MJ responds to a gamer who is at first critical, but then turns confrontational.  This is what professionalism looks like.  MJ didn't capitulate, but he didn't fly off the handle.  As I criticized Price and others for unprofessional behavior, it's worth giving kudos to MJ for his professionalism here.  That's the type of guy you want leading your company; the kind of guy you want interacting with your fans and potential customers.



  • WizardryWizardry Member LegendaryPosts: 16,460
    edited November 2018
    Well op,i couldn't agree more.

    IF i see something that looks like awesome or has me thinking,hmm now that is cool and or interesting,i will for certain be sure to announce it.

    I can just leave all the crappy games that are low budget Indie game like the moba's ,ARPG's and whatever else there is and just look at the MORPG genre.

    The mmorpg genre if looking just at the quality games,there are VERY few.Of those very few there is TONS,MASSIVE amounts of room to improve them and add more content ideas.
    IMO we have yet to reach even 25% of what the genre could be doing right now.So we have been receiving a lot of half assed game designs.

    WHY?Obviously money,time,investors forcing them out the door early.Then we have the leads that might be getting bonuses so they want that game out for Christmas so they can reap the benefits of a great year end bonus.

    I will tell you right now,Mark Jacobs is NOT making a AAA mmorpg,not a chance in hell and neither is Brad and Pantheon.We might get something playable,some fanbois will even say,AWESOME game then proceed to tell us how Dad and son had loads of fun playing all weekend.

    As long as cost,money restricts these games so much and the unwillingness of devs to go into deep debt producing them,we are not going to see anything AAA except form maybe a handful of developers.Even then,my idea of AAA is of far higher standards than what i see others tossing around with 8+/10,there has NEVER been an 8/10 game EVER.

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

  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,909
    @MarkJacobs has his head screwed on right.

    IMO it's not just about professionalism. It's about the personality and attitudes of the person behind the avatar we can glean from what they post and say.

    There is a very dysfunctional relationship that exists between large corporate studios and fans. IMO, a big part of how things got as bad as they've gotten has to do with using marketing tricks and predatory practices to separate gamers from their money and then having people fall for those tricks in a big way. The end result is not just big profits - it's the contempt the studios feel for the "rubes" that they can't help but show on occasion when their PR guard is down, and the simmering resentment the fans feel toward those who tricked them that sometimes boils over on social media.

    When you have respect for your fans as MJ does, that shows as well.
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
  • CryomatrixCryomatrix Member EpicPosts: 2,636
    I can see how it can be frustrating dealing with people who make accusations yet understand nothing of what is truly going on. 

    Catch me streaming at
    You can see my sci-fi/WW2 book recommendations. 
  • LokeroLokero Member RarePosts: 1,514
    I had to unsubscribe from some of CSE's stuff(like streaming) because I was getting email spam every single day :lol:
    CSE certainly gives as much info as anyone else, so MJ is right.  CSE basically lets you sit in the office with them.  It's hard to be more transparent than that.

    He was wasting his time responding to that guy as he's just a huge SC trolling fanboy, though.

    The only thing I dislike about CU is the lack of a public forum.  As far as I know, they still only have their testers-only forum.

    Crowfall, CU, SC all give out plenty of information on a regular basis, imo.

    I mean, for crying out loud, we even know what the CSE team eats for lunch half the time thanks to their regular updates.

    But, as always, MJ is the most likeable and respectable guy in the industry and keeps on being classy.
  • ConstantineMerusConstantineMerus Member EpicPosts: 2,690
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