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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Vocal minority and success

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  jusomdude

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 11/21/06
Posts: 2305

 
OP  8/09/12 11:17:30 PM#1

I'm wondering how much of an impact the vocal minority has on the success of new games.

Seems like when the hate ball starts rolling there's no stopping it. I think it had less of an effect on earlier games because not as many people visited social sites and forums.

If the vocal minority starts the hate train, does that mean a game is doomed to fail?

  Fearum

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/15/11
Posts: 1087

8/09/12 11:20:48 PM#2
I think people are more like sheep than we like to think. Though if you let others decide if a game is fun or not for you from forums without trying it for yourself than thats pretty stupid.
  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

8/09/12 11:23:40 PM#3
Originally posted by Fearum
I think people are more like sheep than we like to think. Though if you let others decide if a game is fun or not for you from forums without trying it for yourself than thats pretty stupid.

You'd be surprised. The vocal minority snowball into the majority,

 

Talk about an issue long enough, and word gets around .. fast.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11822

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, ESO, and Combat Arms

8/09/12 11:27:13 PM#4
Originally posted by jusomdude

I'm wondering how much of an impact the vocal minority has on the success of new games.

Seems like when the hate ball starts rolling there's no stopping it. I think it had less of an effect on earlier games because not as many people visited social sites and forums.

If the vocal minority starts the hate train, does that mean a game is doomed to fail?

Do you have examples of games where you feel that a vocal minority affected its success either positively or negatively?

 

  jusomdude

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 11/21/06
Posts: 2305

 
OP  8/09/12 11:31:28 PM#5

Aion, AoC, WAR, SWTOR etc seems to have all been affected negatively..

TSW hasn't had much hate and hasn't seemed to suffered.

  laokoko

Advanced Member

Joined: 9/14/09
Posts: 1874

8/09/12 11:54:43 PM#6

I dont' know about vocal minority.

But check the diablo 3 forum.  It's all negative and sarcastic thread.  I guess kind of like mmorpg.com =)

  jusomdude

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 11/21/06
Posts: 2305

 
OP  8/10/12 12:03:10 AM#7
I think they already made a hefty profit off D3 at 600 million raked in so far not counting whatever they've made off RMAH. Can't imagine the development cost was that much.
  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11822

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, ESO, and Combat Arms

8/10/12 12:46:56 AM#8
Originally posted by jusomdude

Aion, AoC, WAR, SWTOR etc seems to have all been affected negatively..

TSW hasn't had much hate and hasn't seemed to suffered.

You don't think it was actual issues and not a vocal minority that caused the problems for those games? What were the issues the vocal minority railed about for those games?

 

The only one I can really think of is Vanguard, where there appeared to be a core group of players that pretty much gave the GTFO TO WOW treatment to anyone that wasn't on board with their view of what Vanguard should be, basically driving people away not only because they were a horrendous bunch to contend with but because they actually led people to believe the game was some super hardcore purist EQ throwback of masochistic gameplay - a view of the game that I think Brad himself fueled with some of his comments.

True, the people that they drove away was a drop in the bucket compared to the people that left because of the state that Vanguard was released in, but there definitely was a negative impact by that vocal minority leading up to release.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

8/10/12 12:51:48 AM#9
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by jusomdude

Aion, AoC, WAR, SWTOR etc seems to have all been affected negatively..

TSW hasn't had much hate and hasn't seemed to suffered.

You don't think it was actual issues and not a vocal minority that caused the problems for those games? What were the issues the vocal minority railed about for those games?

 

The only one I can really think of is Vanguard, where there appeared to be a core group of players that pretty much gave the GTFO TO WOW treatment to anyone that wasn't on board with their view of what Vanguard should be, basically driving people away not only because they were a horrendous bunch to contend with but because they actually led people to believe the game was some super hardcore purist EQ throwback of masochistic gameplay - a view of the game that I think Brad himself fueled with some of his comments.

True, the people that they drove away was a drop in the bucket compared to the people that left because of the state that Vanguard was released in, but there definitely was a negative impact by that vocal minority leading up to release.

I can understand this.  A Major factor in me staying away from SWTOR, even though I own the Collectors Edition, is the forum fans / shills.  They seem to praise the shortcomings of this game and don't like any input.  My response is to stay away from the forums there .. maybe that's why all the game updates come from 3rd party sources? lol .. the forum there is poison to anyone hoping the game will get better.  According to their forum, everything is good, layoffs are natural, and the game has 999,999 subscribers (less than 1 mil but more than 500,000 per last EA earnings call).

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  jusomdude

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 11/21/06
Posts: 2305

 
OP  8/10/12 1:15:08 AM#10
Originally posted by Loktofeit
Originally posted by jusomdude

Aion, AoC, WAR, SWTOR etc seems to have all been affected negatively..

TSW hasn't had much hate and hasn't seemed to suffered.

You don't think it was actual issues and not a vocal minority that caused the problems for those games? What were the issues the vocal minority railed about for those games?

 

The only one I can really think of is Vanguard, where there appeared to be a core group of players that pretty much gave the GTFO TO WOW treatment to anyone that wasn't on board with their view of what Vanguard should be, basically driving people away not only because they were a horrendous bunch to contend with but because they actually led people to believe the game was some super hardcore purist EQ throwback of masochistic gameplay - a view of the game that I think Brad himself fueled with some of his comments.

True, the people that they drove away was a drop in the bucket compared to the people that left because of the state that Vanguard was released in, but there definitely was a negative impact by that vocal minority leading up to release.

Seems you were around for the releases of the games I mentioned so I don't need to go over their issues, but if you don't know there is google.

Anyways, there may be some legitimate complaints but they get ballooned out of proportion by the vocal minority.

  Quirhid

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/28/05
Posts: 5492

I dare you to pin a label on me.

8/10/12 7:04:19 AM#11

I don't think Aion was affected by this at all. Sure it was a "standard asian MMO" with a flying gimmick and a pretty wrapping, but I think people got pretty much what they expected. It wasn't trying to be anything more than it claimed, and it was well made and well received.

I wasn't interested in Aion but I have nothing bad to say about it.

I mean there's always the crowd which crucifies every MMO that is not exactly what they want (sandbox, sandbox, sandbox), but we don't have to listen to them. The people who were expecting a sandbox MMO out of Bioware were out of their minds. They're just ignorant thats all.

However it is harmful when they start expressing their hopes and false expectations and start spreading those as facts. That further feeds their false expectations and its no wonder they are disappointed once the game releases. It all their own fault.

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  Superman0X

Elite Member

Joined: 3/28/06
Posts: 944

8/10/12 7:11:40 AM#12

The vocal minority doesnt have any effect on the game....

 

What they do affect is marketting, as they represent a very strong word of mouth. Fanboys/Haters are both more than willing to tell everyone they know., and some that they do not, all about the game. This represents a strong word of mouth to either check out the game, or to pass on it. This does have an effect on how many people will try the game.

 

This is particulaly effective with P2P, as they get your money up front. If you can be convinced to pay up front, then it doesnt matter if the game isnt any good, you have already paid. It is less effective with F2P, as there is a lower barrier to entry, and you dont give them any money until they have proven themselves.

 

Expect to see less effect of the vocal minority (either way) with the trend towards F2P games.

  jpnz

Elite Member

Joined: 6/29/06
Posts: 3461

8/10/12 7:12:26 AM#13

The vocal minority are just that a 'loud' niche.

Some business serves that niche well and do reasonably well.

Some business go down the popular route.

Market decides what succeeds or not.

Gdemami -
Informing people about your thoughts and impressions is not a review, it's a blog.

  Loktofeit

Elite Member

Joined: 1/13/10
Posts: 11822

Currently playing EVE, SMITE, ESO, and Combat Arms

8/10/12 7:18:49 AM#14
Originally posted by Superman0X

This is particulaly effective with P2P, as they get your money up front. If you can be convinced to pay up front, then it doesnt matter if the game isnt any good, you have already paid. It is less effective with F2P, as there is a lower barrier to entry, and you dont give them any money until they have proven themselves.

Expect to see less effect of the vocal minority (either way) with the trend towards F2P games.

That's an interesting point. It is a lot easier for someone to see for themselves when the game is free and the client can be downloaded, thus weakening the strength of small but vocal groups evangelizing their particular cause.

  Rydeson

Advanced Member

Joined: 3/05/07
Posts: 3132

8/10/12 7:19:15 AM#15
Originally posted by Fearum
I think people are more like sheep than we like to think. Though if you let others decide if a game is fun or not for you from forums without trying it for yourself than thats pretty stupid.

QFT

     It's amazing how things in life work that way.. Rather we call it sheep or gang mentality.. What starts off as a few or minority of the population gain recognition and eventually the sheep perceive it as a majority and JUMP on board..  Just like gang beatings.. The human psychology is a funny thing..  sadly..

  Gdemami

Elite Member

Joined: 9/23/08
Posts: 6741

8/10/12 7:22:18 AM#16


Originally posted by jusomdude

I think it had less of an effect on earlier games because not as many people visited social sites and forums.

Each group increased in size - those who visit forums and those who do not.

Market just got bigger, not necessarily it implies there are proportionally more people reading forums than before.


However, I would recognize one change regarding the topic.


If we assume that proportionally same amount of people are visiting medias and medias have same impact on product sales, what has changed in recent years is media writings and those have way closer with forum minorities than ever before.

I remember back in the days when game reviews were written professionally, without a bias and you could make an informed opinion based on the review. Those times are long over and today the "journalists" are same folk as vocal minority - emotional write up for spin and increased attention.


So indirectly, vocal minorities might got bigger impact through decadence of journalism onto their level and content.

  Gdemami

Elite Member

Joined: 9/23/08
Posts: 6741

8/10/12 7:24:11 AM#17


Originally posted by Loktofeit

Originally posted by Superman0X This is particulaly effective with P2P, as they get your money up front. If you can be convinced to pay up front, then it doesnt matter if the game isnt any good, you have already paid. It is less effective with F2P, as there is a lower barrier to entry, and you dont give them any money until they have proven themselves. Expect to see less effect of the vocal minority (either way) with the trend towards F2P games.
That's an interesting point. It is a lot easier for someone to see for themselves when the game is free and the client can be downloaded, thus weakening the strength of small but vocal groups evangelizing their particular cause.

Agreed, excellent point by Superman0X!

  Apraxis

Elite Member

Joined: 9/28/05
Posts: 1406

8/10/12 7:30:58 AM#18
Originally posted by Superman0X

The vocal minority doesnt have any effect on the game....

 

What they do affect is marketting, as they represent a very strong word of mouth. Fanboys/Haters are both more than willing to tell everyone they know., and some that they do not, all about the game. This represents a strong word of mouth to either check out the game, or to pass on it. This does have an effect on how many people will try the game.

 

This is particulaly effective with P2P, as they get your money up front. If you can be convinced to pay up front, then it doesnt matter if the game isnt any good, you have already paid. It is less effective with F2P, as there is a lower barrier to entry, and you dont give them any money until they have proven themselves.

 

Expect to see less effect of the vocal minority (either way) with the trend towards F2P games.

I dont know if that is true. It may be true for kids, which have a lot of time at their disposal. For someone working, the money investment isnt that much compared to the time investment a usual mmo comes with. I just check out games, when i am interested before hand. At least nowadays. So the simple word of mouth effect me with F2P as much as with B2P or P2P.

I dont care much of the money i may lose, but i care a lot of the time wasted. And hell.. we waste a lot of time in mmos.

  User Deleted
8/10/12 7:37:09 AM#19
Originally posted by jusomdude
I think they already made a hefty profit off D3 at 600 million raked in so far not counting whatever they've made off RMAH. Can't imagine the development cost was that much.

That doesn't prove that the game is good or bad.  That just proves that people bought the game.  That doesn't show anything about their experiences with the game or if they feel they got what they wanted, what they expected, etc.  You could go by sales increases or decreases over the time period that it's been for sale, but then you'd also have to know other figures like total number of people who will ever consider buying it.  Otherwise you don't know what percent of interested parties acted upon that interest and if those sales are growing or slowing because of opinion/reaction to the game or just being closer to the ending eventual number of sales.

I've always hated the term "Vocal Minority" because of how Blizzard used it.  Basically, they used it as a way to dismiss opinions they didn't like.  Instead of answering the question asked, proving a person's statement wrong, or clearing up wrong information on a subject, they would just say "but those people are the vocal minority" and move on.  It was just a way to dodge telling customers the answer/truth and to discredit people with a problem with their game/support.  I feel like Blizzard, as well as most MMO makers, have zero customer support/relationship training.  They handle things so poorly.

I also think the term itself is incorrect in the context they use it.  They call the people complaining on the forums the vocal minority because of how it compares to the entire amount of people with accounts.  Even if the majority of people who actually post agree, they call them the vocal minority.  I say that's incorrect because they assume the people who don't post are happy/have no problems with the game.  You can't say they are happy or unhappy if they don't tell you.  So again, they skew the referrence to how they'd like it whether it's right or wrong.

 

[edit] Also, was 600 million a typo or correct? Link? [/edit]

  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 18716

Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

8/10/12 8:02:16 AM#20
Originally posted by Gdemami

 


Originally posted by Loktofeit

Originally posted by Superman0X This is particulaly effective with P2P, as they get your money up front. If you can be convinced to pay up front, then it doesnt matter if the game isnt any good, you have already paid. It is less effective with F2P, as there is a lower barrier to entry, and you dont give them any money until they have proven themselves. Expect to see less effect of the vocal minority (either way) with the trend towards F2P games.
That's an interesting point. It is a lot easier for someone to see for themselves when the game is free and the client can be downloaded, thus weakening the strength of small but vocal groups evangelizing their particular cause.

 

Agreed, excellent point by Superman0X!

On the surface I'd agree with SupermanOX but then I wonder, many people actually let themselves be convinced by others that they aren't having fun, just because the others say they shouldn't be.

The follow the herd (or perhaps lemming) mentality runs deep in human society.'

But truthfully, its sort of a chicken and egg theory, which came first.

For most of the MMORPG's mentioned, they all had very real problems that made them not fun to play over the long term for a large number of players, most of whom never heard from anyone, they just decided on their own they weren't having fun.

In fact, all of those titles got more than a million people to try them, yet people left in droves.  I really can't think of a single title out there where people stayed away based on what "word of mouth" was on the streets (negatively) but in reality were a diamond in the rough just waiting to be discovered.

Well, perhaps except for EVE, but that's an acquired taste, much like roquefort cheese. 

 

"In these forums 'honest' seems to be a symonym for 'hates the game just like I do'" - ohioastro
Kyleran - Bitter Vet ™ since 2006
"This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

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