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News & Features Discussion  » General: Wood: Community Shouldn't Mean Marketing

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56 posts found
  Ozmodan

Elite Member

Joined: 2/27/07
Posts: 6821

2/19/10 7:34:03 AM#41
Originally posted by SnarlingWolf

I think MMO players are too demanding of community to begin with.

 

When I play FPS, RTS, racing, RPG games I don't visit their sites and talk with the developers. I also rarely do it with MMOs. Of the dozens of MMOs I've played I've only used the forums on 2 of them to date.

 

But yet for some reason MMO players expect all this interaction with the company, something no other game player expects or even seeks out. And then if there isn't enough talk with the players they suddenly feel slighted and that they are owed all this discussion and back and forth.

 

Why all of a sudden with MMOs to players demand interaction and community with the developers? They don't in other games, they don't with TV shows, they don't with movies, they don't with authors. But yet in this one specific form of entertainment it becomes expected that the company have a big community setup ready to talk to players about the game.

 

I know someone will say that cost is a factor, well my XBox Live account costs as much per month as an MMO. And there isn't any back and forth with Microsoft over the future and direction of XBox 360.

It clearly isn't because it's a form of entertainment since no other form of entertainment offers such a thing.

 

So why do players of MMOs feel they are OWED a community and a direct link to the devs?

It is fairly obvious you have not played MMO's much. 

If the developers are not getting a gamers view of how the game plays, they will not fix problems that can be very important to the player base.

Take DAoC for example with their Trials of Atlantis expansion.  If players put in enough time they basically became gods in a pvp game.  How long will the general populace stick around in a pvp game when they have to fight against basically invincible players?  Sure the DAoC staff made some token changes, but they were completely unaware of the problems the average gamer was having and the changes were not even close to what they needed to do.  A mass exodus from the game occurred because of this.

I can site many examples of this that has occurred in other games.  UO had it's Age of Shadows expansion, EQ it's ridiculous camping, the entire AC2 game.  I could go on and on providing examples of developers out of touch with their players.

MMO's are not a box you buy, play it for a month and then move on to the next game.  MMO's want to retain you for a subscription for as long as they can or in a f2p game to keep spending your money in the item shop.  They need the feed back from someone to keep them aware of the issues with the game.

If the player base feels that it's concerns are not being addressed, they will just leave.

  inle

Novice Member

Joined: 6/25/08
Posts: 61

2/19/10 9:03:42 AM#42

just wanted to say i agree with the ops post

“The greatest ignorance is to reject something you know nothing about”

just because the cake is a lie dosnt mean there cant be 3.1415926535etc etc (Pi) :P

  sarbonn

Novice Member

Joined: 3/16/06
Posts: 108

2/19/10 10:51:24 AM#43

I used to be a very strong contributor to the community forums for Ultima Online back when they actually had them. They had some of the greatest community managers (there were a few of them, although usually one main one that usually took charge most of the time). They were not cheerleaders for the game, but they were spokespeople for the game, and they did a great job. Then, after Trammel was introduced, the higher beings at EA decided that they didn't like the criticism they were receiving and ended the forums. It was probably the biggest mistake they ever made.

What they never realized was that a lot of the voices of the different shards were represented on the boards, and the second that the company decided it didn't want a place for those voices to discuss the game, many of us just left the game completely. I hadn't realized it until then, but I was holding onto the game, mainly because of my enjoyment of communicating with people in teh forums, and we all shared the similar desire to enjoy the game. Once they took that away, I quit the game. I ran into a lot of those senior posters years later in other games, and a lot of them said the same thing.

What companies don't realize is that even though there is a lot of criticism of their product on the forums, removing that forum is the deathknell for their game as well, especially when an active community has been built up there.

My blog:
http://www.littlesarbonn.com

  Fusion

Old School

Joined: 5/21/03
Posts: 1392

2/19/10 11:36:42 AM#44
Originally posted by SnarlingWolf

I think MMO players are too demanding of community to begin with.

Too demanding? it is what we pay them for monthly, to see improvements and additional content etc etc, do you think we pay them just for fun? we pay monthly and i think we deserve to demand!

When I play FPS, RTS, racing, RPG games I don't visit their sites and talk with the developers. I also rarely do it with MMOs. Of the dozens of MMOs I've played I've only used the forums on 2 of them to date.

Because you've payed for the game already and your not paying monthly so you have no right to demand anything out of them (except maybe a patch or two if things really are unplayably broken, which non-MMO games rarely are, they're 99.9% of the time a finished product and MMO's aren't

Replies to some really stupid points...

Currently playing: -

Waiting for: Class4.

Dead and Buried: ESO, NWO, GW2, SWTOR, Darkfall, AO, AC2, Vanguard, CoH/V, EnB, EVE, Neocron, FE, EQ, EQ2, DAoC, FFXI, FFXIV, SWG, WoW, and billions of eastern junks!

  SnarlingWolf

Novice Member

Joined: 6/23/09
Posts: 2728

2/19/10 3:09:34 PM#45
Originally posted by Fusion
Originally posted by SnarlingWolf

I think MMO players are too demanding of community to begin with.

Too demanding? it is what we pay them for monthly, to see improvements and additional content etc etc, do you think we pay them just for fun? we pay monthly and i think we deserve to demand!

When I play FPS, RTS, racing, RPG games I don't visit their sites and talk with the developers. I also rarely do it with MMOs. Of the dozens of MMOs I've played I've only used the forums on 2 of them to date.

Because you've payed for the game already and your not paying monthly so you have no right to demand anything out of them (except maybe a patch or two if things really are unplayably broken, which non-MMO games rarely are, they're 99.9% of the time a finished product and MMO's aren't

Replies to some really stupid points...


 

I pay for cable/internet/phone monthly (and it all costs more then MMOs)and I don't have a community where I talk to the people who work there. I pay for Xbox Live regularly, but don't demand a community to talk to microsoft. When I buy a new car I know I'm going to be paying for it monthly for a few years but I don't demand a community with the manufacturers.

 

There are a lot of businesses where you pay on a regular basis, and pay a lot more then MMOs, but people don't demand a community or think they're owed all these different things by a company. So no you're arguement is the stupid point since it misses the actual point of the post.

 

It's a game you play when it's fun, you don't when it's not and all the companies actually care about is numbers. They don't care about posts or rants or whining, they care what their metrics show.

 

They have data to show what quests people play, what point players get to before they quit, how many people stayed subbed for how long and do what. They have all the information on what actual drives their numbers. They don't need a community to do that. I think WoW has showed this many times over. They make changes that no one asked for, and many in the vocal minority scream is killing the game. But then their numbers go up another million or two. Then they do it again and again. This isn't because of their community interactions, it's because of their metrics.

 

I realize I take an unpopular stance when, on a forum of the die-hard MMO fans who want to have a say in every aspect of every MMO ever, I say players shouldn't feel owed an MMO. But to make a quick, undefended, hollow reason as to why doesn't really do the conversation justice.

  SnarlingWolf

Novice Member

Joined: 6/23/09
Posts: 2728

2/19/10 3:16:29 PM#46
Originally posted by Ozmodan
Originally posted by SnarlingWolf

 

It is fairly obvious you have not played MMO's much. 

If the developers are not getting a gamers view of how the game plays, they will not fix problems that can be very important to the player base.

Take DAoC for example with their Trials of Atlantis expansion.  If players put in enough time they basically became gods in a pvp game.  How long will the general populace stick around in a pvp game when they have to fight against basically invincible players?  Sure the DAoC staff made some token changes, but they were completely unaware of the problems the average gamer was having and the changes were not even close to what they needed to do.  A mass exodus from the game occurred because of this.

I can site many examples of this that has occurred in other games.  UO had it's Age of Shadows expansion, EQ it's ridiculous camping, the entire AC2 game.  I could go on and on providing examples of developers out of touch with their players.

MMO's are not a box you buy, play it for a month and then move on to the next game.  MMO's want to retain you for a subscription for as long as they can or in a f2p game to keep spending your money in the item shop.  They need the feed back from someone to keep them aware of the issues with the game.

If the player base feels that it's concerns are not being addressed, they will just leave.


 

I started playing MMOs with The Realm, and then I've played just about every major, and some minor, release since then. I have had at least once MMO account subbed each month for a good 12 years. So yes I think I have some experience with MMOs.

 

As I said in my reply to a different post. MMOs have deep metrics, they can measure and monitor many aspects of their game. And since such a small percentage of a player base even visits a companies forums they can't use what those players say as accurate information anyways. So yes a game can have a bad release, but their metrics are telling them that (and more accurately what issues are) faster then the small group of players that posts on the forums.

 

MMO's are as simple as a game you play, for the majority of the player base. The players that post on forums such as this, or official game forums are not the majority. They are a major minority. So that minority takes an MMO to be something far more then a game, but the majority of any MMOs player base is average people who just want to play a game and have fun. Do they want to keep those customers? Of course but they do so by simply keeping it fun, not through listening to every die hard fans complaint.

  Unlight

Novice Member

Joined: 12/10/08
Posts: 2586

2/19/10 5:01:53 PM#47

An interesting topic and an opinion I would tend to agree with.

I was playing Age of Conan through the tail-end of beta and for the first couple of months after launch.  It was during this period that all respect I ever had, or would ever had for Failcom, completely dissolved.  It was that there were so many problems with the game post-release.  This was expected and accepted.  It was the company's stubborn refusal to not only address those problems, but to even acknowledge they even existed.  Game breaking bug after game breaking bug was being reported and nothing was ever mentioned about them.  The complaints were rising to a deafening crescendo, and all the feedback we were getting from Failcom was how wonderfully awesome everything was going with the game, and how the future was indeed bright.

Not only was what we were getting out of the company in response to our concerns, lies and misdirection, but it was also ham-fisted and stupidly obtuse lies and misdirection.  A buggy game at release is forgivable, and even expected these days.  What's unforgivable is a complete lack of honesty and respect for the folks that are paying for you to stay in business.

Because of the way the this company handled that episode, they've lost me as a client for good.  Perhaps if they'd had a few straight-shooters out there dealing with the community instead of the slimy hacks writing their press releases, I'd be willing to give them another shot.  Instead, now I turn quickly away from anything I see sporting their logo.

  AmbushMartyr

Novice Member

Joined: 3/18/07
Posts: 69

"Just because you played 5 mins of a MMO doesnt make you a game reviewer."

2/20/10 12:35:49 AM#48

Maybe you need to forward this article over to Gpotato`s CM, cause god knows shes part of the marketing team and does a great job of political spin! Ask anyone who just got the word tonight that the prices for Allods CS is final! ($20 for 6 extra slots of bagspace for starters!) If this trend keeps up F2P model will die out from greed!

  ArcAngel3

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/25/06
Posts: 2941

Momento Mori

2/21/10 1:19:49 AM#49
Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
Originally posted by Fusion
Originally posted by SnarlingWolf

I think MMO players are too demanding of community to begin with.

Too demanding? it is what we pay them for monthly, to see improvements and additional content etc etc, do you think we pay them just for fun? we pay monthly and i think we deserve to demand!

When I play FPS, RTS, racing, RPG games I don't visit their sites and talk with the developers. I also rarely do it with MMOs. Of the dozens of MMOs I've played I've only used the forums on 2 of them to date.

Because you've payed for the game already and your not paying monthly so you have no right to demand anything out of them (except maybe a patch or two if things really are unplayably broken, which non-MMO games rarely are, they're 99.9% of the time a finished product and MMO's aren't

Replies to some really stupid points...


 

I pay for cable/internet/phone monthly (and it all costs more then MMOs)and I don't have a community where I talk to the people who work there. I pay for Xbox Live regularly, but don't demand a community to talk to microsoft. When I buy a new car I know I'm going to be paying for it monthly for a few years but I don't demand a community with the manufacturers.

 

There are a lot of businesses where you pay on a regular basis, and pay a lot more then MMOs, but people don't demand a community or think they're owed all these different things by a company. So no you're arguement is the stupid point since it misses the actual point of the post.

 

It's a game you play when it's fun, you don't when it's not and all the companies actually care about is numbers. They don't care about posts or rants or whining, they care what their metrics show.

 

They have data to show what quests people play, what point players get to before they quit, how many people stayed subbed for how long and do what. They have all the information on what actual drives their numbers. They don't need a community to do that. I think WoW has showed this many times over. They make changes that no one asked for, and many in the vocal minority scream is killing the game. But then their numbers go up another million or two. Then they do it again and again. This isn't because of their community interactions, it's because of their metrics.

 

I realize I take an unpopular stance when, on a forum of the die-hard MMO fans who want to have a say in every aspect of every MMO ever, I say players shouldn't feel owed an MMO. But to make a quick, undefended, hollow reason as to why doesn't really do the conversation justice.


 

People don't want a community with their car dealership because there's nothing massively multiplayer about buying a car.  MMOs are by their very nature community oriented.  Refining them (due to bugs and issues) and continuing to add content to them is best done in collaboration wtih the playing community--if you want them to continuing playing that is.

Also, you highlight a problem I've mentioned elsewhere regarding MMO market research.  I think you're right that they look exclusively at their metrics.  What's wrong with that?  They have no idea what the numbers mean without community input.  Case in point, SOE said their metrics led them to delete professions that turned out to be very popular.  After the game in question became an epic screw-up (in the words of its own lead developer btw) what was blamed?  Bad data-mining.  AKA completely misreading the metrics.  How did they misread them so badly?  They turned a deaf ear to their playing community.  Smed described this as his cardinal sin btw.  I agree with him on this point.

 

  erictlewis

Advanced Member

Joined: 11/08/08
Posts: 3059

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results.

2/21/10 9:21:05 AM#50

Yes lets talk about data mining.   I will point at SWG for sure, they said we see what that data mining lead too. 

Now I will point at LOTRO with their data mining.  We got rad gear, and LI's.   Both of these are the most hotly debated topic.  In fact so hot the past 2 weeks the CM put up a thing saying tell the devs what you would like to change about both.  They are getting an earfull.

However we see the CM locking, and pruning upshoot threads leaft and right,  Espically the ones that say I bet they do nothing. In fact 3 months after MOM rolled out things had gotten so hot in the forums, the CM posted and said "Our players love Randiance gear and LI's thoese will not be changing"  WE already had one revamp to LI's.

This is the problem with some CM's and some companies, they don't like hearing from the player base, because of their ego. The fact is most companies choose a path to go down, and they don't like hearing they messed it up.

If your going to have a cm it needs to be somebody who can remain open about negative thoughts from the comunity otherwise all they become is another fan who shouts the mal contents down. We see this over and over and over.

 

  User Deleted
2/21/10 12:01:54 PM#51


Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
I realize I take an unpopular stance when, on a forum of the die-hard MMO fans who want to have a say in every aspect of every MMO ever, I say players shouldn't feel owed an MMO. But to make a quick, undefended, hollow reason as to why doesn't really do the conversation justice.

It's not only an unpopular stance, its practically unjustifiable and despite listed experience, it definitely isn't reflected. Whether a game is an MMORPG or a non-MMORPG (even single-player game), the company creates games FOR players. Not for themselves or they wouldn't bother publishing them, it's for other people. Even Non-MMORPG games come out with balance patches and bug fixes to make the games more enjoyable. It just so happens that an MMORPG has more longevity than a regular video game.

No one ever said we were owed an MMO, but for the sake of customer satisfaction, companies are bound to listening to their customers to keep the game fun for everyone. Hardcore or not, we are still a portion of the player population and I don't think that many of the forum posters are as hardcore as you think we are, we are just the minority that like to express an opinion.

If you firmly believe that developers shouldn't have to listen to their customer or worry about the satisfaction of their community, then why are YOU even posting on these forums in the first place? There would be no point for places like this if companies never had to cater to players' thoughts, opinions and beliefs. If our opinions never mattered, I believe there would be a lot more people less inclined to even bother expressing an opinion.

  SnarlingWolf

Novice Member

Joined: 6/23/09
Posts: 2728

2/21/10 1:56:26 PM#52
Originally posted by Jairoe03

 


Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
I realize I take an unpopular stance when, on a forum of the die-hard MMO fans who want to have a say in every aspect of every MMO ever, I say players shouldn't feel owed an MMO. But to make a quick, undefended, hollow reason as to why doesn't really do the conversation justice.

 

It's not only an unpopular stance, its practically unjustifiable and despite listed experience, it definitely isn't reflected. Whether a game is an MMORPG or a non-MMORPG (even single-player game), the company creates games FOR players. Not for themselves or they wouldn't bother publishing them, it's for other people. Even Non-MMORPG games come out with balance patches and bug fixes to make the games more enjoyable. It just so happens that an MMORPG has more longevity than a regular video game.

No one ever said we were owed an MMO, but for the sake of customer satisfaction, companies are bound to listening to their customers to keep the game fun for everyone. Hardcore or not, we are still a portion of the player population and I don't think that many of the forum posters are as hardcore as you think we are, we are just the minority that like to express an opinion.

If you firmly believe that developers shouldn't have to listen to their customer or worry about the satisfaction of their community, then why are YOU even posting on these forums in the first place? There would be no point for places like this if companies never had to cater to players' thoughts, opinions and beliefs. If our opinions never mattered, I believe there would be a lot more people less inclined to even bother expressing an opinion.


 

How does my thoughts on what developers should listen to determine whether or not I should post on these forums? These are non game company forums, meaning no devs. So the two are 100% unrelated, something you seem to miss on most information.

 

Companies produce games for MONEY, players give them money. That does not directly mean they make the game for the players, they do it as a business to make money. They have metrics that show what keeps players paying longer, makes them more likely to buy in the first place, and what extra items they'll pay for on top of their subscriptions. They use those numbers, not the few players the are vocal on their forums, to determine the path the game takes.

 

One thing no one has admitted to realizing in all the arguing of my posts is the fact that the TRUTH is that a very small percentage of the players post on official forums. And those same players tend to fall in the same player category. That "community" doesn't come close to representing what the ACTUAL players want in their game and want changed.

 

So sure a company will do changes that will piss off those die hard hardcore fans, and every forum in the world will light up with those die hards making sure the world knows how much said company screwed up. But the company goes on making money just fine because their change was for the majority player base, not the minority.

 

MMO communities don't even work for that very reason. You only get a tiny group of players that all represent 1 or 2 types of gamers, not the majority who play the game. So yes on a board like this which is mostly those same players they are determined there should be a major community  with the company holding discussions with them. But you fail to realize the companies don't get much useful information out of those communities because it is not an effective information gathering tool.

 

But go on thinking that your hardcore get into every aspect of the game and tell the developers what to do mentality is what all the players feel. When in reality it's what a tiny minority of the players feel, not the majority.

  mlambert890

Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/06/05
Posts: 134

2/21/10 9:27:52 PM#53
Originally posted by UnsungToo

LOL... I'm sorry i don't mean to laugh.

I think what companies need is the vision of a dying poor gamer. People don't  want to and most can't pay for subscriptions.

Sure there's still lot's of people who will, but overall that's what's killing most MMO's.

Overall it's a good article for office use. Yes, players shouldn't really be dealing with the business end of the game, just the fun parts and the people that portray that.


 

Everyone wants everything for free.  Thats human nature.  People want to be paid for their own work, and don't want to pay others for theirs.

 

That said... So the solution is F2P MMOs.  Anyone claiming the reason for folks being so demanding of MMO devs is their "sub fee" should admit that F2P forums should be all happy and peaceful, right?

 

Well go to any F2P forum.  The complainers are every bit as vocal and insistent as any P2P MMO.  So this argument is specious.  It has nothing to do with sub fees.  An MMO could *pay you* to play the freakin game and the forums would be filled with complainers.

 

I think the reason is that, more than any other genre, the MMO genre attracts people who are trying to solve some other problem, fill some other void, with the game.  A lot of people are trying to use these games as some sort of escapism or therapy and, when they inevitably fall short they take it really really personally.

  User Deleted
2/21/10 9:45:29 PM#54


Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
How does my thoughts on what developers should listen to determine whether or not I should post on these forums? These are non game company forums, meaning no devs. So the two are 100% unrelated, something you seem to miss on most information.
 
Companies produce games for MONEY, players give them money. That does not directly mean they make the game for the players, they do it as a business to make money. They have metrics that show what keeps players paying longer, makes them more likely to buy in the first place, and what extra items they'll pay for on top of their subscriptions. They use those numbers, not the few players the are vocal on their forums, to determine the path the game takes.
 
One thing no one has admitted to realizing in all the arguing of my posts is the fact that the TRUTH is that a very small percentage of the players post on official forums. And those same players tend to fall in the same player category. That "community" doesn't come close to representing what the ACTUAL players want in their game and want changed.
 
So sure a company will do changes that will piss off those die hard hardcore fans, and every forum in the world will light up with those die hards making sure the world knows how much said company screwed up. But the company goes on making money just fine because their change was for the majority player base, not the minority.
 
MMO communities don't even work for that very reason. You only get a tiny group of players that all represent 1 or 2 types of gamers, not the majority who play the game. So yes on a board like this which is mostly those same players they are determined there should be a major community  with the company holding discussions with them. But you fail to realize the companies don't get much useful information out of those communities because it is not an effective information gathering tool.
 
But go on thinking that your hardcore get into every aspect of the game and tell the developers what to do mentality is what all the players feel. When in reality it's what a tiny minority of the players feel, not the majority.

I don't think anyone is arguing against the fact that forum posters are the majority of the gaming population. However, forums can be related to developers, why do you think companies have created their own forums on their own websites in the first place? Oh because they want us to share our thoughts and opinions on a game to help them make it better or maybe they just like it when we spin our wheels on their own website? I don't know, could possibly be that you're completely overstating everything being said in this thread and that wouldn't be a surprise to me since your original post was based off unproven extremes anyway.

Yes, it is no surprise that companies do these things for money, but the whole time I been arguing the fact is that the best way for companies to make money is by listening and building trust with their player population. Customer satisfaction and money do correlate hence why its very important especially for a long term relationship like an MMORPG for developers to cater to the player base, which community managers tend to facilitate I believe via forums.

And guess what, players get listened to more often than you think. So next time, rather than focus on one point in a post and then reiterate the same argument in your last 5-6 posts, actually read what's being said and make a counter point to why developers shouldn't cater to players because again, "dev's not having to cater to players" sounds absolutely ridiculous especially when community is more crucial in MMO's than non-MMO games for the longevity of their products and company as a whole (yes, that ultimately leads to money).

PS where exactly is your proof behind your "truths" for these so called facts you keep iterating. Forum posters aren't a 1 size fit all, we are more diverse than you think. Please try to not use any overstatements and exaggerations of whats being said or even words that I haven't clearly stated (aka trying to tell dev's what they should do in every aspect of the game because that definitely wasn't suggested).

  wildchyld

Novice Member

Joined: 5/28/07
Posts: 35

2/22/10 9:57:45 PM#55

I disagree. Community Managers need to be part of marketing. In fact, more often then not the problem you'll see in free to play games is that they DON'T work for marketing, they work for the product manager who is mainly concerned with in game microtransaction sales. That's why you're seeing so many facebook and twitter accounts that are nothing but lists of items for sale. The problem isn't them being a part of marketing. In the mmo realm, the cash shop & the community managers are reporting to the same person, a product manager whose job is to bring more moohla in on an ongoing basis. That isn't actually the marketing department at all.

The problem isn't who community managers report to, It's that they're being conceptualized improperly. A community manager essentially should be working for the players. They should be the voice of the people in the forums, in the game and even out here in mmorpg.com land. Companies often miss this point (no matter who they report to ultimately.)

  BEMotormouth

Novice Member

Joined: 4/08/08
Posts: 18

2/23/10 11:04:42 AM#56
Originally posted by Amathe

CMs have a hard job.

The players ask questions and more often than not, the CM isn't given the answers or even the authority to provide the answer if they do know. Once and if they do answer anything, from that point forward if they don't answer all the questions then players get mad.

If the CM admits that there is anything wrong with the game or deserving of criticism, then it's not simply the CM's opinion. It's that the company admits whatever it is being talked about sucks, and the next thing you see is that CM so and so has left for other opportunities and to spend more time with their family - we wish them the best.

They have to take continuous abuse, and if they lose their cool even once or twice CM so and so has left for other opportunities and to spend more time with their family - we wish them the best.
 

If they say what character they play or what server they are on, then they are part of a conspiracy to assist their guild, class or faction. If they don't say then it's that they don't play the game and why is someone who doesn't play a CM?

CMs are in a unique zone that can found directly between Rock and Hard Place.

 

That's pretty much it in a nutshell.  The wire a CM has to tread is razor thin.  And the problem with that is it makes the CM come across as wishy-washy or "spewing the company line". Some days, you just cannot win. The players distrust you, and the devs run away from you, lol.

Mind you, I love my job. But there are moments when my self control gets tested harder than Oprah at an all-you-can-eat pizza buffet..

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