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the Lonely Altar

I don't play "games", I play MMORPGs! This is where I talk about them!

Author: Tierless

#6: Giving "AAA" the E-Finger!

Posted by Tierless Tuesday April 23 2013 at 9:51PM
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I had a very long, wordy, pretty blog written up about how I think MMORPG.com is the saviour of this genre (and I mean that, without it many of us would check out of the genre and go away, this site keeps us invested and waiting) and how we all need to come together to create a movement to get our genre back and force it to evolve. Well, another time, another place. Right here, right now, what follows, it’s a straight shot. As straight as they get. No BS, no bull, old school Denis Leary in your face style so pull up a chair-dare to spin it around and sick backwards like a rebel, and lets talk.


We’ve been lied to, ignored, manipulated, shafted, belittled, fooled, flamed, and trolled by the “AAA” mmo experience for too long. “Enough is enough and it’s time for a change”. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat around thinking that. I’m sick of being marketed hot garbage and I’m sick of the “higher ups” thinking I have the brain function of a hamster.


Recently a friend of mine showed me a game on her phone, she was amazed because she can raise little monsters and teach them to do things. I loled, “we had that 10 years ago in MMOs” I said. “What is that?” she said. I sighed the kind of sigh that can only come from an old gunfighter that just had a flashback to better days. “Well, they used to be a virtual world you could live in, now they are more like your phone app”...


I remember when the genre hit rock bottom for me. When I bought a game, only to log in and be given a blatantly small storage space with an option to buy more space for $20. It was sickeningly obvious. I wonder how much money, time, and research it took to find the perfectly small but not obvious amount of storage combined with a high enough loot drop ratio to make us spend  the extra cash? Where does that end? Do we pay for a game, pay again to log in, pay for a character, pay to play the character, pay for the ability to walk, to run, to equip? Where does it end?


It doesn’t, MMOs continue stumbling toward the phone/hand held app game market. Cute, easy games that constantly tell us how great we are and let us know we can be even greater-faster; for the low low price of $4.99 we can skip from X to Z! Greatness is one small fee away! For even more cash you can change any sort of consequence you’ve been “forced” to deal with. Ruin your name? Pay to change it. Your side always loses? Pay to change it. Your server isn’t the most advanced one, pay to change it. Not only do they remove any shred of consequence, they are enabling the worst players! It's like they took their nickname literally; Theme Parks, charge us at the gate, then charge us for everything we do once we get in!


I’m old, back in my day server rep mattered. If you ruined your name you had to re-roll your 1 character you were allowed or put in some effort to change the way people felt about you. It could be rough, but on the plus side, the great people stood out, got a good rep, and the community made them into server celebrities.


So back to us, we sit around and complain about being ignored. Then someone comes down to our level to ask us first hand what we want, so naturally we respond with hostility (and people wonder why the smartest thing our creators ever did was never come back). Then we go back to complaining about being ignored again!


Look, “I'm nine mmo years old. My MMO died at seven and a half. I don't want to live in a hole anymore. I'm going to do something about it." (extra points if you know where that quote was lifted from, clue, it’s fantastic). What I did was go against everything I believe in, everything I think is logical, and everything my victimized MMOego wanted me to do and I decided to support CU. Now I’m NOT asking anyone else to back it. I’m NOT asking anyone else to put money into it. I am asking that you support it and what I mean by support is simply keep an open mind to it and what it could do for the genre if for no better reason than to give the “AAA” hole MMO companies the e-finger they deserve!
Colfy writes:

I agree with you 100% up to 1000% 

These AAA games listen to no one but themselves. most of them are not even gamers anymore. Just suits looking for the next buck. At least CU is listening

Tue Apr 23 2013 10:34PM Report
tlear writes:

"give the “AAA” hole MMO companies the e-finger they deserve!" exactly f em!

I can not make myself play the current batch of the mmos at all I have not bought or played one since Aion came out in NA.

 

Wed Apr 24 2013 9:54AM Report
Tierless writes: For me it starts with how poorly SOE treates us in the early days, then it goes therough the false advertising and marketing of A only to give us X and claim it was even better than giving us what we wanted, and it's finally pushed me over the edge with all the pay to play BS. Wed Apr 24 2013 10:06AM Report
binskki writes:

You are absolutely right - there are a lot of very pretty-looking games out there that players are no more emotionally involved with than a phone app.

They are fairly entertaining time sinks, but they are short on community.  It's like going to Disney World (and don't get me wrong, I have had great times at Disney) - it's all very entertaining, but you feel manipulated the whole time.

Please don't keep dumbing games down - it turns them into things that are all the same!

Wed Apr 24 2013 4:15PM Report
binskki writes:

You are absolutely right - there are a lot of very pretty-looking games out there that players are no more emotionally involved with than a phone app.

They are fairly entertaining time sinks, but they are short on community.  It's like going to Disney World (and don't get me wrong, I have had great times at Disney) - it's all very entertaining, but you feel manipulated the whole time - and you are quite sure they are more interested in your wallet than in you.

Please don't keep dumbing games down - it turns them into things that are all the same!

Wed Apr 24 2013 4:16PM Report
Mordran writes:

i Anarchy Online i got lost out of the city. i made a new char ^^.

sounds stupid but i think that was great, games need to be challeging again.

Wed Apr 24 2013 4:22PM Report
Akubura writes:

Awesome blog, couldn't of said it better myself! It's been a plesure chatting to someone who has the same beliefs as me over on the KS page! 

 

Wed Apr 24 2013 4:56PM Report
Tierless writes: Thanks for the kind words, appreciate it. Wed Apr 24 2013 7:07PM Report
gylnne writes: Once again Mr. Tierless uses words to paint a vivid picture. Thank you very much.:) Wed Apr 24 2013 8:01PM Report
Telyn writes: Excellent post.  If we're sick of the watered-down gruel we've been fed, we can either sit around and complain about it, or DO something about it.  That's why I'm backing CU.  I'm ready for a MMO without a big publisher forcing horrible design decisions onto the developers regardless of what's good for the game or the players. Wed Apr 24 2013 8:08PM Report
Karraptathid writes:

People ask my why after 11 years I still play the same MMO, the new ones simply do not cut it.  I've tried WAR, I've tried WoW, and I rarely play RIFT, none of them gives me the same amount of joy as that elderly old MMO that I have been playing for so long.  Something is missing in the Corporation formula of what "gamers" want and forced spoon fed.  Don't know if CU will have what it takes, but it's got to be better then what the large corps are shoveling out.

 

Wed Apr 24 2013 8:14PM Report
Foggye writes:

I feel like a lot of games that would ultimately would of probably been stand-alone are being made into mmos because that's where  "it's" at nowdays.  SWTOR being the perfect example.  It's like PC gaming companies think that the mmorpgs are the only way to go against console games.

 

I'm an old mmo player as well.  I believe it's time to dial it back as well.  I'd like to see CU succeed not only for my own interest, but because it (and games like it) may pave the way for the industry to change.  That there might be more niche mmos made.

 

Ultimately I think the same argument can be for the music industry.  Every artist I find on YouTube doing something different, or their on their own is like a finger to the music industry; that told them their music wasn't what they were looking for.  Like Lindsey Stirling or Marie Digby.

Wed Apr 24 2013 8:29PM Report
Foggye writes:

I feel like a lot of games that would ultimately would of probably been stand-alone are being made into mmos because that's where  "it's" at nowdays.  SWTOR being the perfect example.  It's like PC gaming companies think that the mmorpgs are the only way to go against console games.

 

I'm an old mmo player as well.  I believe it's time to dial it back as well.  I'd like to see CU succeed not only for my own interest, but because it (and games like it) may pave the way for the industry to change.  That there might be more niche mmos made.

 

Ultimately I think the same argument can be for the music industry.  Every artist I find on YouTube doing something different, or their on their own is like a finger to the music industry; that told them their music wasn't what they were looking for.  Like Lindsey Stirling or Marie Digby.

Wed Apr 24 2013 8:32PM Report
Galiden writes: Great write-up. I completely agree. Wed Apr 24 2013 8:34PM Report
emperorhades1 writes:

I will not be investing in CU.  Though the direction may change but, agreeing with every single player to gain money is not the direction I would want to go in an mmo.

I know nothing of how to develop an MMO even though I have played them for 13 years.

I can draw a painting but I do not know how to make a Mona Lisa.  I can aim a camera, but I can't put together a movie one million people will want to watch.

Innovation does not come from debates or groups, it comes from individual vision.  That is the problem with todays MMO's.  Everyone is trying to copy everyone else and trying to please the masses instead of coming up with an original idea.  Its so much easier to reverse engineer what is already done than it is to create new.  Its also easier to sell.  This is why all MMO's look and feel the same since the mold breakers of the genre.  If CU gives me an idea on paper that is solid, a vision like no other.  I may be on board, until then join the e-finger club too.

Wed Apr 24 2013 9:58PM Report
Tierless writes: @Telyn Eacatly! Wed Apr 24 2013 10:37PM Report
ChemicalBurns writes: Sadly my dumb ass had to look and see what finger "E" was :P Thu Apr 25 2013 6:34PM Report
Tierless writes: No shame in honesty my friend. Thu Apr 25 2013 7:04PM Report
Tierless writes: A few people have asked why we are so hyped for CU when it hasnt even began yet. Well I'll enlighten them. It's not because of MJ. We respect him and appreciate his willingness to work with us for a better result, but its more that that. If CU suceeds, it sends the message that the players want more and are ready to reclaim this genre. To take it away from corporate greed and dumbed down mass appeal theme parks. It lets it be known that we are ready for a challenge, we want something different, new, harder, and social. I lets investors know that they can back the little guys again, take chances again, and make a world for us to live in again! It makes the statement, you do not need 200 million dollars to make a mmo, you need the same ingredients that have always made for good art, a brave idea, creativity, challenge, working outside the comfort zone, being receptive to feedback, and the love of what you are creating. It takes the power away from the corporate invaders and puts it back in the hands of the people that have loved and supported this genre before it was main stream, and will be supporting it long after. It gives us back our voice, our vote, and most importantly, our game! CU is MJ's baby, but if he does what he says he will, if he continues to work with us like he has, this is a game for the players, by the players, and with our continued support it shall not vanish from this genre! You ask us why we support MJ and CU, I ask you why aren't you!  Fri Apr 26 2013 12:08PM Report
emperorhades1 writes:

Tierless you answered your own question.

"It makes the statement, you do not need 200 million dollars to make a mmo, you need the same ingredients that have always made for good art, a brave idea, creativity, challenge, working outside the comfort zone, being receptive to feedback, and the love of what you are creating."

No where have I seen an idea, than if you join and get your friends to join, and your friends, friends to join.  We can make a game.  In business this is a ponzi scheme.

Of course, invest at your own risk.  But, I do not believe that a company that pleases the masses is going to make a good game.  WoW pleases the masses, that is not the game for me.  It pleases millions though and I assure you they have many people in sales and marketing that listen to the masses.

If I am going to invest in a game its going to be one that promises what I want.  I don't like pvp, I don't like breadcrumbs, I like content to just happen, no be totally predetermined.  I want a game that I can think through for a challenge.  Not have to hope that 20 people show up, have good connections and dont stand in fire.  Again, what exactly has CU or MJ promised?

Fri Apr 26 2013 2:43PM Report
Screelings writes:

I'm a 15 year MMO playing veteran myself, having started out with Neverwinter Nights on AOL back in the day.

My only argument is with the commentators, not the original post. People are touting CU as some godsent game. My problem is, the guy your heralding as the second coming made a shit game in Warhammer Online. Sure you might be able to pawn some of the blame for that mess off on EA, but its hard to fathom any inkling of potential with a guy like Mark Jacobs.

The problem in todays market is far too many companies are picking up veterans from the cult library of MMOs that still have huge followings, and putting them into their same shitty theme park mmo development team. We, magically, are suppose to believe this means the game will be better then it actually turns out to be.

To me, the only thing I care about is new design ideas. For the last 5-6 years the only thing I've seen is the same rehashed shit; Single player games turned MMO (that very surely could have been great single player games). All to cash in on a repeat cash flow.

Very quickly, these companies realize their clients are consuming content far too fast for their huge staff to develop for (lay offs.... then F2P model ensue). Its almost a joke how fast recent 'AAA' launches have turned from a subscription model into a P2P model. They KNOWINGLY launched their game with a subscription, HOPING the title took off and they could milk their players for a monthly bill. It hasn't worked yet.

To my knowledge the only AAA (U.S based) major titles charging a monthly fee still are EVE Online and World of Warcraft. Sure some others exist, Darkfall, but a larger issue exists with this. Many top Execs are stating the era of Subscriptions is over... when in fact ... the era of shitty theme park games is over.

Make a game that offers me content to play, or an engaging pvp model, or a sandbox environment without a learning curve the size of asia; You'll earn my $15 (or god forbid they charge less then that...).

I don't see the reason for excitement behind CU. A small team, a small budget and barely any sandbox material? I just don't see the fanbase returning to a 3 faction setup when Guild Wars 2 will be lightyears ahead of them by the time this game gets launched. I don't see it. Mark Jacobs isn't gonna sell me on this Kickstarter fantasy.

Fri Apr 26 2013 3:33PM Report
Khalathwyr writes:

What more than a few of us have been saying for 4 or 5 years now. Glad to see the torch still lit here as for a while saying such things would uually get trolled and the OP getting vacationed from this site.

 

Bless Kickstarter and old school devs like MJ making use of it. If you are a fan of MMO worlds as opposed to "just a game" then Kickstarter and Niche is where it's at!

Sat Apr 27 2013 11:40PM Report
Khalathwyr writes:

@Screelings

1) Eve is not US based. They are based in Iceland.

2) You can fixate on WAR, but MJ also had a huge hand in DAoC, which was a good game. He's even at best if you want to have honest converation. Of course something you don't know about that I do is that with WAR he and EA had to also deal with Games Workshop. Having worked for GW I know the BS they pull behind closed doors. Knowing that, I don't blame MJ so much and amazingly I let off of EA a little too.

Either way with this title MJ is doing it his way. If it funds then we will get to see if MJ is such the devil you make him to be. Judging by the overwhelming response to his ideas, ideas that can't be ruined by EA or GW, he's going down the right path as far as the majority of players are concerned. That in itself should speak volumes as far as who is to blame for WAR.

Sat Apr 27 2013 11:47PM Report
usuckmmorpgcom writes: Nice to see that you've jumped on the AAA-hate bandwagon. Not surprising. MMO gamers aren't known for thinking for themselves. I wonder when the fad will end? Probably about the same time the "indie games suck" fad begins.  Sun Apr 28 2013 10:13AM Report
liffi writes:

First of all I have to say that I have been playing games over 20 years, but that doesnt mean shit. I know what I like and I am with there that something should happen to our lovely mmorpg out there, but I dont want them to make the same old games. I for one dont like the earliest mmo:s. They just didnt give me anything really. WoW was good and what made WoW speacial was the people and community it had and there was so many people there. It was easy to find guild that you wanted and even people same country as you and that was something really amazing. 

Now the most new mmo that comes out are kinf og same old and only one or two new thing in it and that just doesnt give anything, but why is that? I think Mmo is really hard genre cause they have to give us unique experience they have to give story and they have to give it so that we feel that we are the champion and no other and that is the problem. It is kind of insane that we kill 100 time the end boss... The mmo story never ends and it is enless loop and that is kind of one big issue, no mmorpg ever end and maybe just maybe they should try an make an ending to a mmo. Make world reset or something. Try to think outside the box.

Thing is that they cant ask us what kind of game they make couse there is so many people with ideas and most of them are insane or not workable, so they get frustraited. Then you guys blame them of making crappy game.

No matter how passionet we are about mmo there is a change that the mmo we know have to end and they should end trying to make them and try to do something else. Make something new and not the same old mmo. I am bored of the mmorpg that comes out, few have really good story and ideas and I love them, but in the end they dont bring nothing new.

Only thing we can do is trust the gamemakers and not spend money to these crappy mmo that come out. Like many critics have said we should make out money speak and then maybe then they start to make new type of games and not the same shit. 

Sun Apr 28 2013 10:50AM Report
Fusion writes:

Good read

Par for the CU part at the end, sick and tired of seeing that flutter around here all the effing time

Mon Apr 29 2013 2:19AM Report

MMORPG.com writes:
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