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SWG Veteran Refuge  » Well okay, but the only game SOE ever screwed up was SWG right?

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30 posts found
  ArcAngel3

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/25/06
Posts: 2941

Momento Mori

 
OP  2/10/11 6:50:15 PM#21
Originally posted by Fadedbomb
Originally posted by ArcAngel3

Follow up thread to this one: The only thing SOE ever did wrong with this game was the NGE right? 

I've come across the notion that SOE's reputation suffers largely from the negative feedback of disgruntled SWG players.  It's as though players of this game are uniquely unreasonable, resentful, critical etc..  If this is the case then players of their other titles must be relatively happy.  The basic idea is that SOE really makes good games and treats customers well, but a vocal minority of SWG players paint a very unrealistic picture of them.  Is this true?  I dunno, you tell me.  SWG is the only SOE game I've ever played.

Have they been really different in their handling of games like Vanguard, EQ, EQII, Matrix online etc.?  Are those players generally pleased with the way their games have been managed, and how they have been treated as customers? Feel free to comment on other titles, I just listed a few that came to mind.

-Matrix Online : They essentially bought the game, and then dropped ALL support for it essentially. They planned numerous "Entire Revamps" for the game, but only half assed it every...single...time. Eventually, they cut ALL major support and the game suffered into oblivion.

 

-EqII, they've been milking this since it failed to attract REAL popularity. Initially the game was supposed to have NOTHING to do with Everquest, but they changed the name & numerous art stages in order to connect back towards the EQ1 fanbase for more $$$ (developer interview is where this is from, post launch).

 

-Vanguard was simply saved from the graces of God due to a stupid Publisher who put to much expectations on his developement team, and set too many lofty goals. This is the ONLY title SOE actually saved from destruction.

 

-EQ, essentially this game has been SOE's flagship for more than 10years now. It is because of EQ that they are now the MMO mainstream giant (however undeserved they may be) in today's MMO world. Unfortunately though, the game has suffered from a MASSIVE lack of vision from the development team, and has been slapped around with so many gimic filled expansions it has bastardized the game into near-exstinction. Despite this, hardcore fans who keep being let down by newer iterations of the Modern MMO continue to come back to this bastion of what it MEANS to play a D&D-ish MMO.

 

-There are MANY other games they support now, but most are almost as bad as Matrix, or are going by that path.

 When I started seeing strange things happen to SWG, I checked out the Matrix online.  I'm a huge fan of the film.  I read the forums and players were screaming about some kind of combat revamp.  I thought twice about the game in light of that.  Then, I heard it closed down essentially from neglect.  That doesn't seem like a well-managed game with happy fans to me tbh.

With Vanguard I read in the wiki that it was SOE who pushed the early release date, although the devs said the thing was far from launch ready.  Then when it tanked, of course, SOE offered to generously buy the game outright.  I dunno if that's "saving" it, or some kind of hostile takeover.  Made me scratch my head.  Then I saw on their forums that people were screaming for classic servers because of unwanted revamps.  I never experienced any of this first hand, just read about it on forums and in the wiki.

  ArcAngel3

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/25/06
Posts: 2941

Momento Mori

 
OP  2/10/11 6:56:07 PM#22
Originally posted by Stewe79
Originally posted by TUX426
Originally posted by Stewe79

SOE have made some really high changes 

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sony_Online_Entertainment

On March 13, 2008, Sony Online Entertainment announced that Sony Computer Entertainment will have direct control over SOE.

 

So since SCE has a direct control over SOE now adays i think we may see some real quality products from them in the future. 

Im not judging SOE for anything i know they did some misstakes but doesn't everyone make misstakes? and shouldn't people have a forgiving side? Everyone deservs second. third. furth chances. 

That's 3 years ago lol. Any "change" would have happened by now.

lol to you too. Changes takes time. and especially when Devlopment of MMOS is 4-5 years. So do the math yourself of whats been released that started devlop afterwards.  as far as i know its only EQ next.  that i whould call a "Real MMORPG" Clone wars and free realms is more of an casual MMOG

 I read something about EQII players feeling lied to when SOE introduced RMT.  Apparently Smed told them that he was personally against this, and that there were no plans to add RMT.  Did this happen before or after the merge with SCE?

  ArcAngel3

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/25/06
Posts: 2941

Momento Mori

 
OP  2/10/11 6:57:33 PM#23
Originally posted by Teala

Anything SOE creates eventually turns to garbage or is neglected.   It was not just fact that SOE took one of the best sandbox games ever made and destroyed it.  They neglected Planetside.   The neglected Vangaurd.   The changes made to EQ2 soon after launch drove me away.  They sell unfinished expansions.   They sell expansion and do not tell players they are not compatible with the current game(the pulled the NGE and sold an expansion to players despite knowing that the expansion was not compatible).  No thank you.   I am done giving that company money.

 They sold an expansion that was not compatible with the original game?  What do you mean?

  hayes303

Novice Member

Joined: 3/13/04
Posts: 368

2/10/11 6:59:51 PM#24

I think that SOE is just another company, no better no worse. They screwed up on SWG, but how much of that was SOE and how much was LucasArts still isn't clear to me.

I didn't like how they dummied EQ and EQ2 up, but that was more out of a misplaced sense of the customer knowing best (in MMORPGs, that is almost never the case).

Matrix Online was a piece of crap. When they got it it was garbage and when it died the fans should have thanked SOE for fishing that thing out of the trash and letting them have a more drawn out goodbye. Vanguard was never rushed out the door by SOE, they were only distrbuting it. Sigil rushed it out due to the fact they were broke. Only after launch did SOE outright buy Vanguard. It would have been wonderful if they had done something with it, but they chose to spend their investment money somewhere else.

Is SOE a great company? Probably not, are they any worse than Blizzard or EA/Bioware? Probably not. Most of this endless SOE hate comes from hurt feelings and fond memoeries for a game that died 5 yrs ago. I find little of the conspiracy SOE hate based in reality.

  Nerf09

Novice Member

Joined: 3/14/04
Posts: 3008

2/10/11 9:02:17 PM#25
Originally posted by TUX426
Originally posted by Stewe79

SOE have made some really high changes 

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sony_Online_Entertainment

On March 13, 2008, Sony Online Entertainment announced that Sony Computer Entertainment will have direct control over SOE.

 

So since SCE has a direct control over SOE now adays i think we may see some real quality products from them in the future. 

Im not judging SOE for anything i know they did some misstakes but doesn't everyone make misstakes? and shouldn't people have a forgiving side? Everyone deservs second. third. furth chances. 

That's 3 years ago lol. Any "change" would have happened by now.

Is it  "change" we could believe in?

  ArcAngel3

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/25/06
Posts: 2941

Momento Mori

 
OP  2/10/11 11:40:11 PM#26
Originally posted by hayes303

I think that SOE is just another company, no better no worse. They screwed up on SWG, but how much of that was SOE and how much was LucasArts still isn't clear to me.

I didn't like how they dummied EQ and EQ2 up, but that was more out of a misplaced sense of the customer knowing best (in MMORPGs, that is almost never the case).

Matrix Online was a piece of crap. When they got it it was garbage and when it died the fans should have thanked SOE for fishing that thing out of the trash and letting them have a more drawn out goodbye. Vanguard was never rushed out the door by SOE, they were only distrbuting it. Sigil rushed it out due to the fact they were broke. Only after launch did SOE outright buy Vanguard. It would have been wonderful if they had done something with it, but they chose to spend their investment money somewhere else.

Is SOE a great company? Probably not, are they any worse than Blizzard or EA/Bioware? Probably not. Most of this endless SOE hate comes from hurt feelings and fond memoeries for a game that died 5 yrs ago. I find little of the conspiracy SOE hate based in reality.

I dunno Hayes, when I read your comments, and compare them to the experiences of most of the other respondents, I see a big difference.  As for Vanguard, SOE was the publisher, and it appears they set the release date, even though the development house needed about 3 more months for a successful launch.  Here's a quote to that effect:

"The game was released before it was ready, leading to:
  • Content was low for high-level players, and spotty even in some lower-level areas. Much planned high level content was not included at launch.
  • Large numbers of bugs and performance issues, which make gameplay difficult, and on some systems rendering the game virtually unplayable.
  • At release, performance was poor on many systems, including some high-end configurations. For example there was no anti-aliasing, and anisotropic filtering support was buggy.
In April 2007 Brad McQuaid, CEO of Sigil Games Online, addressed these issues and provided some  explanations:
'Had I had the financial resources, ability to place the product later, etc. I would have given us about 3 more months to get more polish in, more high level content in, and to distance ourselves from the WoW expansion.'"
 
One of the big complaints about SWG has always been the early release with serious bugs, issues and missing content.  Judging from the quote above, it seems that SWG isn't the only SOE game that had these issues.   Suggesting that SWG is unique, and the only source of player frustration seems simply incorrect.
 
From what I'm reading, it also seems incorrect to suggest that NGE (5 years ago) is the only thing that got under players' skin in SWG.  A lot of people seem to be saying that they felt repeatedly burned by a company that rushed out buggy content, didn't listen to player feedback, didn't do what they said they were going to, and gave them all sorts of nasty surprises. 
 
As for comparison's with Blizzard, I can't help thinking of the way they listened to player feedback and cancelled proposed changes to their forums.  If SOE had listened that well to player feedback about numerous changes to SWG (Combat Upgrade and NGE to name just two) I believe they might be just as successful as the competition.  Unfortunately, it seems they didn't listen, and their popularity plummetted as a result.
 
Smed himself commented in an interview that SOE committed a cardinal sin when they didn't listen to their players.  I have yet to read Blizzard's CEO make a statement like that.  I also have yet to see a mass player exodus from WoW.  Blizz seems to do at least two things that SOE seems to struggle with: 1) put out an abundance of highly polished content, 2) respond favourably to player feedback, even if it means changing their plans for the game or service.
  Obee

Novice Member

Joined: 8/07/06
Posts: 1560

2/11/11 3:16:04 PM#27
Originally posted by ArcAngel3
Originally posted by hayes303
 
Smed himself commented in an interview that SOE committed a cardinal sin when they didn't listen to their players.

 

The Smed has made that statement at least ten times for at least ten different things SOE has done, and I'd wager a million dollars he will make that statement again in the future (most likely when the monthly content updates stop for DCUO).

There are a number of things that are common occurance at SOE that are not (yet) common at other companies.  SOE releases expansions with missing features and empty promises of adding the features later (there are still features from the last EQ2 expansion that are not in the game, and are unlikely to ever be in the game with the next expansion due out soon).  The folks at SOE have a habit of lying about features in their products that are not in their products (They lied about having a quest in EQ2 to unlock the froglok race as playable for over six months before they actually added it.  They also lied about jedi being in SWG at launch).  SOE employees also have a habit of being outright hostile towards their customers and insulting them without provocation (Chris Cao's infamous meltdown, the majority of the SWG 'community relations' people, etc.).  No other company has the habit of making massive changes to their games while outright lying about such changes occuring, as SOE had done over the course of SWG and EQ2 (the Smed said about a month before the Station Cash store was added to EQ and EQ2 that EQ2 would never have RMT on the non exchange servers).

The preceeding is just scratching the surface of things SOE does that are not common among other companies.  It is by no means comprehensive.

 

  hayes303

Novice Member

Joined: 3/13/04
Posts: 368

2/12/11 8:51:48 PM#28
Originally posted by ArcAngel3
Originally posted by hayes303

I think that SOE is just another company, no better no worse. They screwed up on SWG, but how much of that was SOE and how much was LucasArts still isn't clear to me.

I didn't like how they dummied EQ and EQ2 up, but that was more out of a misplaced sense of the customer knowing best (in MMORPGs, that is almost never the case).

Matrix Online was a piece of crap. When they got it it was garbage and when it died the fans should have thanked SOE for fishing that thing out of the trash and letting them have a more drawn out goodbye. Vanguard was never rushed out the door by SOE, they were only distrbuting it. Sigil rushed it out due to the fact they were broke. Only after launch did SOE outright buy Vanguard. It would have been wonderful if they had done something with it, but they chose to spend their investment money somewhere else.

Is SOE a great company? Probably not, are they any worse than Blizzard or EA/Bioware? Probably not. Most of this endless SOE hate comes from hurt feelings and fond memoeries for a game that died 5 yrs ago. I find little of the conspiracy SOE hate based in reality.

I dunno Hayes, when I read your comments, and compare them to the experiences of most of the other respondents, I see a big difference.  As for Vanguard, SOE was the publisher, and it appears they set the release date, even though the development house needed about 3 more months for a successful launch.  Here's a quote to that effect:

"The game was released before it was ready, leading to:
  • Content was low for high-level players, and spotty even in some lower-level areas. Much planned high level content was not included at launch.
  • Large numbers of bugs and performance issues, which make gameplay difficult, and on some systems rendering the game virtually unplayable.
  • At release, performance was poor on many systems, including some high-end configurations. For example there was no anti-aliasing, and anisotropic filtering support was buggy.
In April 2007 Brad McQuaid, CEO of Sigil Games Online, addressed these issues and provided some  explanations:
'Had I had the financial resources, ability to place the product later, etc. I would have given us about 3 more months to get more polish in, more high level content in, and to distance ourselves from the WoW expansion.'"
 
One of the big complaints about SWG has always been the early release with serious bugs, issues and missing content.  Judging from the quote above, it seems that SWG isn't the only SOE game that had these issues.   Suggesting that SWG is unique, and the only source of player frustration seems simply incorrect.
 
From what I'm reading, it also seems incorrect to suggest that NGE (5 years ago) is the only thing that got under players' skin in SWG.  A lot of people seem to be saying that they felt repeatedly burned by a company that rushed out buggy content, didn't listen to player feedback, didn't do what they said they were going to, and gave them all sorts of nasty surprises. 
 
As for comparison's with Blizzard, I can't help thinking of the way they listened to player feedback and cancelled proposed changes to their forums.  If SOE had listened that well to player feedback about numerous changes to SWG (Combat Upgrade and NGE to name just two) I believe they might be just as successful as the competition.  Unfortunately, it seems they didn't listen, and their popularity plummetted as a result.
 
Smed himself commented in an interview that SOE committed a cardinal sin when they didn't listen to their players.  I have yet to read Blizzard's CEO make a statement like that.  I also have yet to see a mass player exodus from WoW.  Blizz seems to do at least two things that SOE seems to struggle with: 1) put out an abundance of highly polished content, 2) respond favourably to player feedback, even if it means changing their plans for the game or service.

 I see your point, however, specifically with regards to Vanguard and McQuaid's comments, SOE was co-publisher at launch. Brad McQuaid and his lack of buisness skill and Microsoft jumping ship was more at fault in Vanguard's horrible launch than SOE. Sigil went broke and launched. they had avoided any relationship with SOE until Microsoft dropped out as the publisher because of McQuaid's past with SOE. Your McQuaid quote was dead on, but in this context the assumption that SOE was the source of the money is wrong. http://www.f13.net/index.php?itemid=561 is a interesting article to read, it states that SOE was hands off on the game until it train wrecked.

 

I still play Vanguard today, and enjoy it. I wish SOE would pour some cash to it, but its not happening. Luckily its a big enough game to keep a guy going even without xpacs.

 

I never said that NGE was the only thing they did to that game, but it was the worst. Blizzard didn't change their forums, but they have made mountains of unpopluar changes to WoW that players hated. As to bugs, I bought WoW at launch, Tabula Rasa, Aion, City of Heroes/Villians, Fallen Earth.......All these games have suffered from bugs and problems. To attribute that to a SOE plot, seems a bit silly to me. SWG even before the changes was not truely in any shape to compete with the larger games. Initial box sales were more based on the IP than the content. SOE was horrible at hacking the game, no one is denying this, but I stated that I am still unsure of how much blame should LucasArts get as well (George Lucas is a psycho when it comes to protecting his right to be the one that destroys his greatest work).

 

Smed did say that, but so has every other buisness that has ever pissed their customers off and wanted to keep them (including blizzard). I'm not justifying what SOe has done, or them as a company, but like I said, I think a lot of the hate that floats in this forum is not neccesarily rational. A lot of it is a emotional response to what happened to SWG.

  Kazara

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/20/06
Posts: 1072

"Denial does not change reality."

2/13/11 8:23:23 AM#29

"I'm not justifying what SOe has done, or them as a company, but like I said, I think a lot of the hate that floats in this forum is not neccesarily rational. A lot of it is a emotional response to what happened to SWG."

 There is plenty of well documtented reasons why gamers 'hate' $OE. If you are addressing the level of hate that seems to be expressed by some SWG vets, maybe some of it is due to the sense of betrayal, which inflicts a deeper wound than many other 'wrongs' and it leaves scars. Also keep in mind the forum you are in - a very common factor is disgust/hatred for $OE due to the NGE. Keep in mind that 'Hate' is subjective.

What exactly do you find currently irrational? I think there was some 'irrational' respones long ago, but not really anymore. I come to the SWG primarily to refute the intentional misinformation that gets posted regularly here by the virals and fanbois. $OE is a disreputable company.  I 'hate' $OE and have chosen never to play any $OE games for reasons not just NGE related which have been well discussed here and other forums. 

  ArcAngel3

Apprentice Member

Joined: 9/25/06
Posts: 2941

Momento Mori

 
OP  2/13/11 2:33:03 PM#30
Originally posted by hayes303
Originally posted by ArcAngel3
Originally posted by hayes303

I think that SOE is just another company, no better no worse. They screwed up on SWG, but how much of that was SOE and how much was LucasArts still isn't clear to me.

I didn't like how they dummied EQ and EQ2 up, but that was more out of a misplaced sense of the customer knowing best (in MMORPGs, that is almost never the case).

Matrix Online was a piece of crap. When they got it it was garbage and when it died the fans should have thanked SOE for fishing that thing out of the trash and letting them have a more drawn out goodbye. Vanguard was never rushed out the door by SOE, they were only distrbuting it. Sigil rushed it out due to the fact they were broke. Only after launch did SOE outright buy Vanguard. It would have been wonderful if they had done something with it, but they chose to spend their investment money somewhere else.

Is SOE a great company? Probably not, are they any worse than Blizzard or EA/Bioware? Probably not. Most of this endless SOE hate comes from hurt feelings and fond memoeries for a game that died 5 yrs ago. I find little of the conspiracy SOE hate based in reality.

I dunno Hayes, when I read your comments, and compare them to the experiences of most of the other respondents, I see a big difference.  As for Vanguard, SOE was the publisher, and it appears they set the release date, even though the development house needed about 3 more months for a successful launch.  Here's a quote to that effect:

"The game was released before it was ready, leading to:
  • Content was low for high-level players, and spotty even in some lower-level areas. Much planned high level content was not included at launch.
  • Large numbers of bugs and performance issues, which make gameplay difficult, and on some systems rendering the game virtually unplayable.
  • At release, performance was poor on many systems, including some high-end configurations. For example there was no anti-aliasing, and anisotropic filtering support was buggy.
In April 2007 Brad McQuaid, CEO of Sigil Games Online, addressed these issues and provided some  explanations:
'Had I had the financial resources, ability to place the product later, etc. I would have given us about 3 more months to get more polish in, more high level content in, and to distance ourselves from the WoW expansion.'"
 
One of the big complaints about SWG has always been the early release with serious bugs, issues and missing content.  Judging from the quote above, it seems that SWG isn't the only SOE game that had these issues.   Suggesting that SWG is unique, and the only source of player frustration seems simply incorrect.
 
From what I'm reading, it also seems incorrect to suggest that NGE (5 years ago) is the only thing that got under players' skin in SWG.  A lot of people seem to be saying that they felt repeatedly burned by a company that rushed out buggy content, didn't listen to player feedback, didn't do what they said they were going to, and gave them all sorts of nasty surprises. 
 
As for comparison's with Blizzard, I can't help thinking of the way they listened to player feedback and cancelled proposed changes to their forums.  If SOE had listened that well to player feedback about numerous changes to SWG (Combat Upgrade and NGE to name just two) I believe they might be just as successful as the competition.  Unfortunately, it seems they didn't listen, and their popularity plummetted as a result.
 
Smed himself commented in an interview that SOE committed a cardinal sin when they didn't listen to their players.  I have yet to read Blizzard's CEO make a statement like that.  I also have yet to see a mass player exodus from WoW.  Blizz seems to do at least two things that SOE seems to struggle with: 1) put out an abundance of highly polished content, 2) respond favourably to player feedback, even if it means changing their plans for the game or service.

 I see your point, however, specifically with regards to Vanguard and McQuaid's comments, SOE was co-publisher at launch. Brad McQuaid and his lack of buisness skill and Microsoft jumping ship was more at fault in Vanguard's horrible launch than SOE. Sigil went broke and launched. they had avoided any relationship with SOE until Microsoft dropped out as the publisher because of McQuaid's past with SOE. Your McQuaid quote was dead on, but in this context the assumption that SOE was the source of the money is wrong. http://www.f13.net/index.php?itemid=561 is a interesting article to read, it states that SOE was hands off on the game until it train wrecked.

 

I still play Vanguard today, and enjoy it. I wish SOE would pour some cash to it, but its not happening. Luckily its a big enough game to keep a guy going even without xpacs.

 

I never said that NGE was the only thing they did to that game, but it was the worst. Blizzard didn't change their forums, but they have made mountains of unpopluar changes to WoW that players hated. As to bugs, I bought WoW at launch, Tabula Rasa, Aion, City of Heroes/Villians, Fallen Earth.......All these games have suffered from bugs and problems. To attribute that to a SOE plot, seems a bit silly to me. SWG even before the changes was not truely in any shape to compete with the larger games. Initial box sales were more based on the IP than the content. SOE was horrible at hacking the game, no one is denying this, but I stated that I am still unsure of how much blame should LucasArts get as well (George Lucas is a psycho when it comes to protecting his right to be the one that destroys his greatest work).

 

Smed did say that, but so has every other buisness that has ever pissed their customers off and wanted to keep them (including blizzard). I'm not justifying what SOe has done, or them as a company, but like I said, I think a lot of the hate that floats in this forum is not neccesarily rational. A lot of it is a emotional response to what happened to SWG.

 So nice to read such a well thought-out response :) Thanks.  I think we agree on the SWG deal, that NGE wasn't the only thing that went wrong, just that it happened to be the worst.  Are people's perceptions influenced by the worst thing that happened to them?  I'm sure they are, that's only human imo.  That's why companies should avoid scenarios like the NGE.  They tend to be unforgettable...as much as the company might hope everyone will forget.

At the same time, what I think, and what others seem to see is that NGE wasn't really all that uncharacteristic of SOE.  They've surprised people before that with very unpopular decisions, and they've done so again afterwards.  I've seen some posts and articles that seem to suggest that SOE gets bad press simply because people refuse to get over that one mistake they made in one of their titles.  This theory seems to cast SOE in a favourable light, at the expense of their customers' credibility.  I simply don't buy it, and it doesn't seem to fit with others' experience.

Likewise regarding titles like Vanguard, Matrix and SWG, I don't buy the notion that SOE's partners screwed them up, and that SOE was somehow an innocent by-stander.  That seems like a spin-job that doesn't fit with others' experiences and observations.  Brenlo of SOE, for example, told me personally that NGE was 100% SOE's decision.  He posted this on the public forums, and people still try shift blame to LucasArts.  That truly amazes me.

Simply put, I think that people have bad feelings towards SOE because of a number of bad experiences across a number of their titles.  Sure NGE was probably the worst example of this, but I don't think it was by any means an isolated event, as some seem to suggest. 

If SOE really wants to avoid bad word-of-mouth, it seems to me that they need to become experts at releasing polished games, listening to customer feedback, following through on what they say they're going to do, and avoiding nasty surprises.  Pointing fingers at business partners and suggesting that their players are unreasonable crack-pots doesn't seem like a winning strategy.  If anything it just alienates people more, and generates more negative discussion.

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