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All Posts by Esquire1980

All Posts by Esquire1980

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221 posts found
Originally posted by TUX426

No need to worry. SOE can't afford to close SWG down. No other game or license gives Smed the credibility like Star Wars does. SWG needs to be on the list for Station Pass too.

 LA might have some input about this after the launch of TOR, tho.  SWG is different than any other SOE game.  They have to pay for the use of the IP and I doubt that LA will "forgive" IP payments forever.

Now Zat has been "moved" to another game also.  Another SWG community manager bites the dust.

 

Sony’s MMO Makers Close Three Studios, Lay Off One-Third of Workforce

Owen Good — Sony's MMO Makers Close Three Studios, Lay Off One-Third of WorkforceSony Online Entertainment, makers of D.C. Universe Online and Free Realms, closed three studios and will lay off nearly a third of its workforce, Kotaku has learned.

Word began spreading when George Broussard, best known as the co-creator of Duke Nukem Forever, tweeted earlier this evening that SOE was seeing layoffs and "studio closure is possible." Kotaku has confirmed through a source familiar with the matter that the closures affect SOE's studios in Seattle, Tucson, Ariz. and Denver. Half of the workforce at SOE offices in Austin, Texas were pink slipped along with a sizeable portion of San Diego. In sum, it accounts for nearly one-third of SOE's manpower before today.

Kotaku has reached out to Sony Online Entertainment for official comment. Any statement will be updated here.


http://kotaku.com/#!5787461/sonys-mmo-makers-close-three-studios-lay-off-one+third-of-workforce

 

 

Looks like 1/2 of SOE Austin (devs) and the complete studio for TCG (The Card Game) is now going.

UPDATE;

 

 

 

 

Citizens of the Galaxies,

We wanted to bring this information to you here, rather than having you read about it elsewhere. The SWG player community is one of our most passionate and engaged audiences. Supportive and always offering constructive feedback, players and Senators have helped guide and improve this game over seven full years. Star Wars: Galaxies will continue to be supported this year, and you can look forward to a Producer’s Letter from Teesquared early next week with more information about what lies ahead for the Galaxies in 2011.

~Linda “Brasse” Carlson

Director, Global Community Relations

 

Following is the official notice that you may see on other sites:

As part of a strategic decision to reduce costs and streamline its global workforce, SOE announced today that it will eliminate 205 positions and close its Denver, Seattle and Tucson studios.  As part of this restructuring, SOE is discontinuing production of The Agency so it can focus development resources on delivering two new MMOs based on its renowned PlanetSide and EverQuest properties, while also maintaining its current portfolio of online games.  All possible steps are being taken to ensure team members affected by the transition are treated with appropriate concern. 

This strategic decision will have no impact on SOE’s current portfolio of live games; additionally SOE will transition development efforts for the Denver and Tucson studios’ suite of products to its San Diego headquarters.  This strategic alignment of development resources better positions SOE to remain a global leader in online gaming and deliver on its promise of creating entertaining games for players of all ages, and servicing the 20 million players that visited SOE servers in just the past year.

The SWG community has already asked the question over the specific statement of  "this year" with no answer as yet.

 

Originally posted by BadgerSmaker
Originally posted by TUX426

....but I will say that IMO, the Legacy quest line on Naboo is HORRIBLE!

Sadly, it's true!  I've even gone as far as to document ways to skip the Naboo leg of the Legacy Quest in my : Guide: Understanding Experience Gain

If you really do have to do it, there is a little "trick" you can do that allows you to accept multiple quests from one NPC where they would usually only allow you to take one at a time.

When you get the Quest Acceptance window up, don't click accept right away.  Start talking to the NPC again, then click accept and you will be able to get another quest.

Works well with the nightmare that is Lt. Colonel Typho in Keren who will send you back and forth to the Mauler POI to kill the same NPCs over and over again.

 Badger?  I'm stunned.  An exploit?  rofl

Fingers are still stinging, Tux.  ROFL

You still in STO?  I've still got you friended over there, I think.  There was not enough for me at launch but it has grown somewhat in the last year.  Not as much content as SWG but there is enough now for me, to grow with the game.  No where near as much 3rd party programs/hacks running in PVP as SWG either so I'm back into a little PVP now also. 

Out of SWG myself now, probably for good.  Wife still plays but Bria is just way too much with "Kauri syndrome" for me now and I refuse to give SOE another 200.00 to transfer like I did from Kauri to Bria.  Besides that, I just don't believe there's a future anylonger.  T2 and Hjal are really trying, I have to admit.  But they're only 2 people.  I've seen T2 on the forums on Sat and Sun and Hjal on the forums until 11:00 pm central (his time).  They just don't have the resources or the time to come up with much new or the time to fix mistakes of the past.  Personly, I think that LA has already planned the demise of SWG after launch of TOR.

Have to admit, that what I have learned from T2, if he had been producer way back when then some of these mistakes would not of been made.

More info for you;

I had quite a few pm convos with Chris Klug (creative director of the now defunct Stargate Worlds), who is a prof teaching MMO development in the collage criculum).  Smart guy.  He said he interviewed for a "creative director" position at SOE before the NGE and when they told him what they were planning (NGE) he told them NOT to do NGE and to add content to CU.  T2 might of just hired the guy.  He didn't get the job.  lol  Oh well, more "what ifs".  History is history.

Originally posted by Valeran
Originally posted by BadgerSmaker

Last I heard, the Devs went as far as bringing up a Pre-CU server internally, saw all the bugs and server infrastructure issues that were unfixed from back then and figured it was more effort than it was worth, especially as players would likely want full support, bug fixes and additional content.

Plans were shelved indefinately I think, but plans can change.

Name the source or it didn't happen.

 Badger is 100% correct on this one.  (did I just say that?)

At C6CD, I called Deadmeat via tel-con to have it basicly out with him for pushing more game breaking CHANGES at the playerbase, and the subject came up of classic servers.  He told me he had already brought them up on their internal servers and it was "way buggy" and he wasn't going to go thru with it.  He did say that CU was the ONLY option, that pre-CU wasn't, didn't say why, but that's what he said.  I was on the phone with him for over an hour.  He was not stupid, however he, like all the rest, had his very own ideas where he wanted the game to go and was not flexable at all.  Another "take it or leave it mentality.   Sound familiar?

About 6 months or so back, I got in a pm convo with T2 who let me know in no uncertain terms he was not a fan of NGE, the way it was done or even what was done.  I told him what info I had learned from DM and asked him to try again for a CU server.  He said the info I was told was correct and he would make the try.  A couple of weeks afterwards, he let me know that CU was not going to EVER come back to SOE servers, so he was shot down in a blaze of glory by some1.  LA?  SOE San Diego? DM himself?  Who knows?  T2 didn't elaborate.

It wasn't just the NGE.  From what I understand, there was a subscription drop after CU also. 

Then, for the NGE players that learned that game, they did The Chapter 6 Combat Downgrade, CHANGING the combat system yet again to go more "WoWish" with parry, parry, block, block, miss, miss.  All controled via SOEs random number generator for that ever-luvin silent NERF to stats.  ( adjusting the chance on the random number gen without patch notes, etc)  This was a continuing process as the dev team had been cut down to 20 devs by that point so all the CHANGES they wanted couldn't be completed in one patch.  So, the "new NGE" (C6CD - GU-Whatever) took almost a year to get done. 

This had about the same effect as all the other CHANGES had on SWG, only this time the sub drops came with each patch.  Ended up going from 100K subs (Smed released that info at the launch of C6CD) to about 30K (best guesstimates at the time) at the end of GU-Whatever.  After that loss of subs, Lorin Jameson (Deadmeat) left as Producer (moved up) and the Dev team was cut to it's now 2.5 devs over the following year.

Originally posted by someforumguy
Originally posted by Esquire1980

I tried STO.  Wanted to like that game, waited on it, bought a lifetime hoping that it could CHANGE.  But, sadly, I asked for my lifetime to be refunded last Monday.  Pew, pew, pew, no crafting, no housing, no interiors, small worlds, highly instanced, no open anything, a loading screen every 30 seconds, no end game not even a WoW raid in at launch.  Did I mention highly instanced?  All it did was show me what I missed about SWG.

 

How is it possible that you expected those kind of features in STO? Dont you read about a game before getting a lifetime sub? Oo

If you are looking for a skillsystem, check Fallen Earth. If you are looking for the other features of SWG, check SWG..its still there with more stuff added even. Even the bugs are still there :/


 

Due the simple fact they kept saying some of those features would be in.  Ship Interiors, guild ship yards, guild space stations, crafting to the point of shipyards, no star fleet admirals standing around headquarters with ? marks over their heads, etc etc etc.

Then the Atari sale came along and it appears the entire vision CHANGED.  The lead dev just did an interview and said something to the effect of, "We made a game, not a simulator".  Even Koster called WoW a virtual world with game's in it.  Maybe that's why WoW still gains subs and STO is leaching subs.  Who knows?

I could always deal with the bugs in SWG.  Work-arounds, etc.   The game systems were so many I guess, bugs didn't ruin the experience all that much.  Would have been nicer if they were gone, but they were just not that game breaking for me, at least.

Originally posted by SnarlingWolf
Originally posted by Esquire1980

I tried STO.  Wanted to like that game, waited on it, bought a lifetime hoping that it could CHANGE.  But, sadly, I asked for my lifetime to be refunded last Monday.  Pew, pew, pew, no crafting, no housing, no interiors, small worlds, highly instanced, no open anything, a loading screen every 30 seconds, no end game not even a WoW raid in at launch.  Did I mention highly instanced?  All it did was show me what I missed about SWG.  There are even forum threads over there about SWG in comparison to STO in which (forgive me), I took up for SWG against the not even to WoW standards of STO development.

Let me premise this by saying, I doubt if anyone here has been as vocal against SOE for The Chapter 6 Combat downgrade and GU-Whatever "mini" NGE that was perpatrated against even the NGE playerbase.  CHANGEING the game for a 3rd time to try and draw a playerbase, that they didn't have, and only existed in the minds of SOE.  I understand the long-term , even hatred, of SOE due to CU/NGE and have held a little of that, myself, for the CHANGES I brought above.  I've even gave Fisher static for "enableing SOE" by retaining his sub.

However, as we tell the truth about how SOE mismanaged SWG, have we have taught the industry, appearantly, to stay away from sandbox MMOs in their entirity.  A MMORPG.com writer just said that sandbox MMOs may be dead as far as a AAA studio producing another one.  He did say that there might be a independant studio or 2 out there for sandbox, tho.  With an independant studio, there is always cost as a factor.  In the world we now live in for investors, would they even be able to finance a sandbox MMO now?

My 64 dollar question is;  by boycotting SWG, even in it's current CHANGED state, are we screaming to industry research that the great experiment that Koster made is gone and failed?  Are we telling the industry that there is no market for a sandbox MMO to be tried again?  After all, we all pretty much know that the sub numbers for SWG current is rather dismal and some here, myself included, have taken satisfaction in some of that.  How can another AAA studio even contemplate making another sandbox with the only real sandbox out there in such bad shape?

Meanwhile, all we get for new games is yet another game in the WoW mold and not even as diverse as that with the one I mentioned 1st.  Level up, pew, pew, pew, get an alt and do it all over again, this time with the same content you did before.  At least WoW has other storylines in which to level.  The new games, AoC, War, STO, CO, most do not even have that.  It seems to me that new game development is getting worse, not better.  They all want WoW but they are on the cheap so bad that they put in the bare minimum and launch.  Hopeing for the big bucks to come out of the box sales and worry about fixing the mess, later.

In short, Are we cutting off our own noses to spite our own faces?

First off there has never been a gaming boycott, ever. There has occasionally been a couple people that have tried to boycott different games but they literally always amount to a couple people. I'm getting a little tired of hearing the word boycott on topics it does not apply to (MW2 on the PC, L4D 2).
 

 

But here is the amazing truth for you. Your first paragraph is what is wrong with the industry. You bought a lifetime sub to a terrible game. First reasearch a game before ever even thinking of trying it. You would have found out exactly what it is that makes you hate this game, that will help them make better games when people don't even pick them up.

Second don't ever preorder a game, now luckily in this case it doesn't sound like you did.

 

Lastly never buy a lifetime subscription without having played the game for 2-3 full months first so that you are 100% sure of both what the game is and what they plan on doing with it.

 

Literally the reason for bad games coming out is people like you. Throwing money for a lifetime sub at a game you don't know enough about yet. People need to stop throwing money at games without researching them. You know the last time I spent money on a game that I regretted? Years ago, because I always research a game before trying it, it's easy to tell what to avoid 100% and what to wait for a free trial to try.


 

The only "boycott" is basicly an informal one to be sure.  More of a personal decision to say the least.  SOE "screwed" our game, so we refuse to give them the 2nd chance, ever!  It's been said here, time and time again, by me, even.

I now agree with you 100% on lifetimes and blind faith that games will "come around".  In my defence, I really wanted ST:O to work and give me that old SWG feeling I once had getting to know that game.  Sadly, I just don't believe that game developers, from any studio, will ever accomplish that again.  If it's laziness or money problems, they are not even making the attempt anylonger.  It's all cut down, cheap, versions of WoW which seem to fail as fast as they can put them out.

OK Badger, your time to gloat.  lol

I'm probably heading back to SWG myself.  For all the reasons that the OP mentioned and a couple more.  Even the CHANGED SWG is much better than any of the "new" fast developed MMOs coming out, now. 

And I too, have been quite the vocal "disgruntled vet" on SOE management of the game.  I've just came to the conclusion that boycotting SWG is not doing the industry, or myself any good, anylonger.

Originally posted by TUX426
Originally posted by Esquire1980

I lose nothing when SOE dies also.  But, due to SOE and their mistakes, we all have lost SWG, that every one of us enjoyed to the point that we continue to post on forums about our "old game", and our sandbox MMORPGs.  Can't even fathom ST:O.  Didn't last 2 weeks after launch on such a rushed, repetitive, and just plain bad story-based themepark MMO.  So, I play solitare.  Funny, that feels like a lose to me.

It's not the forums that have made our message so prominate.  It's word of mouth.  The forums have pretty much all the same people discussing what has been discussed all before.  It is our vengence, want to warn others, etc. that have gotten the message out so completly that the industry has taken to mean that "sandbox" will create all these problems.  How many times, in your years at SWG, did you get some1 to sub?  How many times since the SOE mistake of messing with your senator-ship/forum presence have you signed up some1 else, now?  How many times have we all told some1, "Hey, don't try SWG cause SOE still runs it"?  And for good cause.  They have mismanaged SWG, the forums, the senate to the point that no1 in their right mind would ever trust them again.

It may be cheaper to put out trash, but with the ever growing list of failed releases/games, you would believe that some1 in the industry would get the idea pretty quick.  Maybe Bioware has with the backing off of the release of TOR.  I can only hope.  They asked for beta testors about a month after STO did.  However their release is over a year later than STOs.  Looks like, I hope, they may have seen the reaction to STO and decided to include more than just story based content.  But that could be another dream, too.

Jack Emmert, Cryptic, said in a best buy chat that he wanted to put in some sandbox to STO.  They might have had a boat load of more succesful launch if they would of took the time to include this AT launch.  However, they pretty much included nothing at launch other than a few repetive quests.  Looks like Emmert has "got it" some here but not enough to get it all out when your making that all important 1st impression.

 

Wait...you said  "we all lose" and now you say you don't? 

You are WRONG WRONG WRONG about "word of mouth". Let me ask you...how many people do you ask for their opinion before buying/playing a game? SWG isn't some new release, it's a 'has been' title that's been out for 7 freaking years. The sad truth is, the GAME is just THAT BAD!!! People dislike it. It's really THAT SIMPLE!!! 

 

And what is your deal with talking about STO or Cryptic here? You seem to really be hung up on that rival game - is it fear? Cryptic may have a lot of work to do, but their Devs post more in one hour each day than SoE's do in a freaking week! Hell, their Devs are in IRC daily with trolls. Players for STO ask for ships they can walk through, Crytic is working on just that. SWG players ask for "factional differences", they get 2 new sets of flipping fairy wings. Come on lol...comparing Cryptic to SoE is just foolish.


 

Reading is fundamental.  "Lose nothing when SOE dies"  and "we all have lost SWG".  I can even relish in SOE's demise but still morn SWG, the game, as I once knew it.

And, after 5 years with SOE and on older games, yes, I ask and try to gain an informed decision on any game I play, now.  I have to disagree with you that SWG is "that bad".  The game isn't that bad, it is SOE's management that is "that bad".  Even if you can get past the CHANGES and can actualy like the game again or even for the 1st time, there remains no trust that the game you play today will be the game you play tomorrow.  It's not that SWG is that "bad", outdated, people dislike it, that "simple".  It's SOE is that "bad", outdated, people dislike THEM, and it is that "simple".

Do I fear ST:O?  Why exactly would I fear ST:O?  I looked forward to it.  I signed up for the forums the DAY that Cryptic launched the site.  I bit on the "pay for beta" and bought 6 months for Champs when I had no intention what-so-ever to play that game.  I supported Cryptic, all the way thru it.  Then the Lies stopped that "you beta testors haven't seen the entire game yet" that we heard all the way thru Closed and Open beta and what we saw was what we got.  There was no more.  Then, I found you could max level in 2 weeks with only 5 quests, reskinned with different NPCs for the only variety.  Then I found there was absolutly NO crafting included.  Most all of the statements made, that interested me pre-launch, were either postponed or non-existant.

Let's see?

Pay for beta scam.

Lies about what is in the game.

Content, NOT included.

Playable races in at Closed Beta but moved pre launch to TCG,  uhhhhh, The Cryptic Store.

Forum Bans commonplace.

Crafting NOT included.

Direct statements that there would be no Starfleet Admirals standing around at headquarters with ? marks over their heads.  Half right maybe, Starfleet headquarters doesn't exist.

Desperation attempts at subs, cutting the cost of the box and including 90 days free, within 30 days of launch???????

Silencing the forums when disgruntled players state the facts?

No more "I quit" posts.

The CEO of Cryptic ends up being John Smedley trained and approved, complete with the former office down the hall from Smed's.

 

Don't you see a pattern here????????

You may like it and you may still support it.  They did include PVP but it wasn't really planned for launch either.  There was a raul in Closed beta that it didn't exist too, like with the other things that still didn't make it, and they quickly threw together 2 PVP instances.  If I was Cryptic and included such bear minimum at launch, I'd talk to the trolls too.  Anything just to keep a couple of subs around.  The developers are the only thing going for Cryptic atm.  The front office seems to be SOE reincarnated.

 

Originally posted by TUX426
Originally posted by Kazara

Ah, I see that you are linking to the 'sanitized' blog article where Rubenfield toned down his abusive disdain for SWG vets. Take what he says regarding player numbers and player loses with a block of salt. He was trying to justify the creation of and push for the NGE and spread around the blame as much as possible since it failed on an epic scale. 

Happen to know where we could find the "original"?


 

I think the original was gone in a couple days time.  I actually copy/paiste it into Word Perfect so I still have it around somewhere.

Originally posted by Sovrath
Originally posted by Wizardry

To the OP,you keep talking instances,well you can thank the 11 million instance runners in WOW for creating a false market.This gives all the developers the impression that this is what sells.

 

 

?

How is that a false market?

"11 Million" (or thereabouts) seems to me to be a pretty sizable market.

If each one of them gave me a dollar i would be quite satisfied.

Sounds to me like that is an actual market of impressive proportions consisting of people who are NOT giving me a dollar!


 

No one has said that WoW is a false market.  Blizzard, and the copycats, have proved that is the market, at least what the industry believes the market to be. 

Last numbers I heard for WoW is somewhere around 18 mil now, world wide.  While the game may not be a good as others out there, Blizzard's business model and management are not to be outdone.  They manage their product well.  They know that their end game is raid/PVP and that's it.  So, they keep coming out with expansion after expansion, with their "horde" of developers.  New levels, new worlds, new areas (large), new quests, New equipment, "New" everything.  That's why it works.  While I'm not all that impressed with their game, I can be extreemly impressed with their management.

Where this model gets into trouble is when the little guys try it.  Let's take STO for an example.  Fast development in the story based MMO "blizzard" model.  Everyone burns thru the content in 2 weeks and the rest is boring.  Cryptic can't keep up with adding content so players can burn thru it again in a week what it took them months to get coded, completed, tested and out to their customers.  The model does not work unless your Blizzard and can have 100s of devs, oodles of money, etc etc etc, going full bore.

Look at AoC and Funcom.  Same exact thing.  Vanguard, TR, War,  also. All of the "AAA Studio" releases have been about the same.  The Bliz model works if your Blizzard.  No one else or no one under their size.  No one else has the resources to put into it to make it work.

Sandbox, on the other hand, may not be as large of a draw as Bliz's themepark.  However, sandbox players are well known for making their own content as SWG once was.  This limits dev time for retention instead of making dev time a must have to keep players for more than the 1st 30 days that comes with the box.

There is room in the market for both.  This forum and others like it are living proof.  If there was any where else for us to go, other than SWG and the indie studios, no1 would probably hear anything about CU, NGE or C6CD ever again.   There are players, with 15 a month that are looking for both.  Sandbox may very well be more expensive in the pre-launch dept, however.........,  a lot less expensive in the post launch catagory.

Originally posted by TUX426
Originally posted by Esquire1980

I understand, completly.  But, then, we all lose.  SWG goes downhill further (and with SOE pulling the strings, that's pretty easy), and we don't have a game to play.  I haven't heard of 1 person on these boards talking about another game like we all talk about our versions of "old" SWG and how much we enjoyed it.

However, I really don't agree on the industry part of this.  I believe we have had an impact, how much, is debateable.  We are not the only ones that are not subbed simply due to the fact that SOE mismanaged SWG even to that point.  And while we are doing that, no sandbox games, outside of a few "indie" studios are coming out.  Just more and more WoWified clones, not even as good as the original, expecting to make a few bucks off the box sales and throwing the long term to the winds.

 

What do "we" lose? I lose nothing if/when SoE dies.

 

And please...stop giving forums undo credit lol. You, this forum, any other forum...NONE of them have the influence people wish they did. NONE!!! <--- I mean that!!! N O N E !!! It's a business.

 

The reason you don't see more "sandbox" games coming out is $$$. Economically, it's cheaper to invest in short term (3-6mo) MMO releases that are little more than single player games with "co-op"  than it is to develop and maintain a long term MMO that will require years of development. Maybe you'll get lucky and people will want to keep playing, but the current focus surely doesn't seem to be on long term retention - it's most certainly more focused on launch sales.


 

I lose nothing when SOE dies also.  But, due to SOE and their mistakes, we all have lost SWG, that every one of us enjoyed to the point that we continue to post on forums about our "old game", and our sandbox MMORPGs.  Can't even fathom ST:O.  Didn't last 2 weeks after launch on such a rushed, repetitive, and just plain bad story-based themepark MMO.  So, I play solitare.  Funny, that feels like a lose to me.

It's not the forums that have made our message so prominate.  It's word of mouth.  The forums have pretty much all the same people discussing what has been discussed all before.  It is our vengence, want to warn others, etc. that have gotten the message out so completly that the industry has taken to mean that "sandbox" will create all these problems.  How many times, in your years at SWG, did you get some1 to sub?  How many times since the SOE mistake of messing with your senator-ship/forum presence have you signed up some1 else, now?  How many times have we all told some1, "Hey, don't try SWG cause SOE still runs it"?  And for good cause.  They have mismanaged SWG, the forums, the senate to the point that no1 in their right mind would ever trust them again.

It may be cheaper to put out trash, but with the ever growing list of failed releases/games, you would believe that some1 in the industry would get the idea pretty quick.  Maybe Bioware has with the backing off of the release of TOR.  I can only hope.  They asked for beta testors about a month after STO did.  However their release is over a year later than STOs.  Looks like, I hope, they may have seen the reaction to STO and decided to include more than just story based content.  But that could be another dream, too.

Jack Emmert, Cryptic, said in a best buy chat that he wanted to put in some sandbox to STO.  They might have had a boat load of more succesful launch if they would of took the time to include this AT launch.  However, they pretty much included nothing at launch other than a few repetive quests.  Looks like Emmert has "got it" some here but not enough to get it all out when your making that all important 1st impression.

Originally posted by Daffid011

The NGE was the premier example of the absolute worst decision in mmo history, but it is just one bad example on top of a pile of bad examples that make up SWG list of "do not do this to your mmo" that make it the single best example of what not(s) to do in an mmo. 

 

These two comics remind me of just how many mistakes were made that crippled swg from the very beginning of the game.

 

In the end SWG is just a giant example of cascading errors that turned a license to print money and success into a flaming nightmare of failure that should be posted on every developers wall of things not to do when developing and releasing an mmo.  SWG problems go way beyond the NGE and existed since release. The nge was just so huge that it tends to overshadow all of the poor decisions made in this game that caused it to fail. 

Sadly it is also very representative of the problems that have plagued most sandbox games, which just makes for more reasons why most developers shy away from more social oriented game designs like sandboxes. The history of sandbox games in the genre is ugly and almost entirely filled with failures.  

 

 

Also, I very much disagree that the Star Wars license sunk SWG faster than anything else.  If anything, it allowed the game to limp along far longer than if it were a game with an original IP that no one had ever heard of.  People still play swg, because it is the only star wars mmo on the market.

 

 


 

If your're correct, then no wonder we will not get another sandbox from a AAA studio.  And I'm really not all that sure you are correct in all your estimation.

SWG had over 300K subs at one time.  Post WoW, maybe not all that great but pre WoW, 2nd largest of the time.

SWG had many chances.  SWG rebounded from the CU, some say almost back to pre-CU levels.  After NGE, the game came back, somewhat, to 100K subs (Smedley released at C6CD).  So, what does SOE do, each time?  Throw away the sub base they had for a chance at a sub base that only existed in their minds.  CHANGES killed SWG.  There were 3 different playerbases that were CHANGED right out of existance.  SOE mismanagement never ceases to amaze me.

Altho, I think you're right.  It's not SOE mismanagement that is being blamed for these happenings.  It's sandbox.  With the advent of nothing but story driven MMOs, I just did the STO launch, we all end up with no game to play and SWG sinks even further.

I just can't figure out how to get the message across.  SOE continues it's never ending quest to destroy SWG.  Studios keep making WoW clones and launching not even up to the standards of the original.  I keep playing solitare.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXliVs0JCR4&feature=related

Thought you all might be interested.  WARNING, it's rather long, almost 45 minutes. 

Originally posted by Lady_Fei

My continued boycott of SOE is a result of the way I was treated personally as a customer.

 

My game was discontinued, and replaced with a product I never bought, and when I voiced my concerns about it to "the powers that be", I was subsequently ignored. Even after pleading in the forums for weeks for a few simple UI changes that would have made the NGE much,much easier to stomach, and seeing SOE give zero interest in how I felt about the product.

 

I continue to refuse to do business with SOE, or buy any SONY products of any kind, because of their insulting behavior, and the fact that they ignored me, until years later when they realized that they had made more than a few wrong choices. It's too late to apologize now.

 

I don't think the industry in general is impacted at all by this, other than feeling a great sense of trepidation with every new project, knowing that the consumer DOES have a line in the sand, and if that line is crossed, things can get ugly.


 

I understand, completly.  But, then, we all lose.  SWG goes downhill further (and with SOE pulling the strings, that's pretty easy), and we don't have a game to play.  I haven't heard of 1 person on these boards talking about another game like we all talk about our versions of "old" SWG and how much we enjoyed it.

However, I really don't agree on the industry part of this.  I believe we have had an impact, how much, is debateable.  We are not the only ones that are not subbed simply due to the fact that SOE mismanaged SWG even to that point.  And while we are doing that, no sandbox games, outside of a few "indie" studios are coming out.  Just more and more WoWified clones, not even as good as the original, expecting to make a few bucks off the box sales and throwing the long term to the winds.

Originally posted by sookster54

NEVER buy lifetime subs, that's like selling your soul to the devil and you'll never get it back.


STO bombed, I saw it coming from a mile away, I played in the beta myself and wasn't all that impressed. MMO games seem to be fading from my interest because of bad title after title, SWTOR may be my last shot at it, I've gone back to FPS games and playing my XBox 360 once in a while.


 

This is happening to me, also.  Not playing anything as there is really nothing that "flips my trigger", expecially like SWG did.  Playing my old Super Nintendo now with Romance of the Three Kingdons, III.

I have to give Cryptic credit, they did refund my lifetime sub.  Altho, California has some of the most stringent Consumer Protection Statutes on the books and probably would have bore some brunt because of that if they didn't make the refunds.  All I had to say, was they touted game systems, before the launch, that were not included in the released game and the guy went, "I'm gonna put you on hold now, so I can get your refund completed".

ST:O still could be a decent game if they take the next 2 years and put in the right things.  The 64 dollar question there is, will they have enough subs in the mean time to do that post launch development or will they only have enough left to put it in maintenance mode?

Ohhh, SOE mismanagement.  If you remember the excelant post you made on the "mari-time" history of SWG (A Perfect Storm) which I added to with the history (Titanic) of NGE to the then current SWG, it was repleat with bad decision after bad decision.  Never bothering to look back and see why 1 or all of them failed miserably or at the least, never getting the crux of the idea.  I actualy had a guy email me a link to that posting 3 or 4 months ago.  Man, it's back there now.  lol

Sad to see that the management via SOE has now come down to being blamed on sandbox.  I agree. it may be a long time, indeed, before we see another attempt.  Your right on the research that the MMO industry does.  If I had a para-legal, much less a 1st year menber of the Bar (industry so called research professionals) that came up with just some of the same conclusions that these people have came up with, they'd be outta here so fast their head would swim. 

Damn shame we can see it, being outside the industry, and the professionals can't.

Originally posted by ArcAngel3

You know Esquire, when I first learned what STO was at launch, I had a very similar thought to yours.  It went something like, "wow man, these jokers make SWG look good lol."

Upon further reflection, I see both as flawed games.   They were both incomplete and bug-ridden at release.  They both have popular sci-fi IPs as their main draw; and both have a subscription fee, plus RMT money pits.  Tbh, I lump them both in the same category.

What I find extremely interesting is that the guy calling the shots for STO was a Vice President with SOE--no kidding.  It seems that he learned from the Master.  "There are always two, a Master and an apprentice."  I guess that's true after all lol.

I tried STO's beta, and was extremely disappointed by repeated crashes to desk-top.  Then I learned about the RMT crap for playable races with game-changing stat bonuses.  I voted with my wallet on that game, much like I voted against the NGE--and subsequent developments.

Did my vote count for anything?  Well, it's hard to say.  STO is now available at a discount price tho lol, already!  Maybe someone's getting some kind of message.  Smed also did acknowledge that NGE was a big mistake, and that many people voted with their feet.  I think that is in fact the right kind of message to send.

Meanwhile, if I'm not mistaken, games like EVE online continue to grow.  That's a sandbox space game, I believe, with a straight subscription model too.  Didn't it just win another gaming award?  Wouldn't surprise me.

 


 

In the STO Closed beta, I actualy liked the game when Cryptic was only letting the servers go up for 2-3 hours at a time.  It wasn't until they gave us a "leveling weekend", reset player progression and turned us loose that the "hey, this is really boring" posts came to be.  And you should of seen em,  very drastic.  Cryptic countered by saying we hadn't seen the complete game as yet, many systems were not put into the CB client and that they would try and move the "patrol" missions around some to break them up.  So, we held on until Open Beta.  When the same ideals hit the forums, they again said that not all game systems were in Open Beta, also.  Then Pre-launch came about.  When the exact same came up yet again, they pulled an SOE and just ignored the problem in it's entirty.  After launch, the problem seemed to grow incredibly with the no answer being the norm, now.

I have to admit, I do not see both games as flawed.  I see STO as being extreemly cheap, on the fly, copy/paiste rushed development.  Maybe, that could be flushed out in a year or 2 post launch, if they retain enough subs to make that worthy.  Sadly, I'm not going to be one of them.  It's just that boring and that bad to me.

I see SWG as a game that once had me activly anticipating my time in the game.  Had my mind drifting, even sitting down reviewing a case file at work, to what I was about to accomplish or the next thing on the game plan for my character(s), city, houses, guild, etc.  I remember that anticipation of the community, what their interests were, what they needed to make their toons/etc complete.  That has never happened again.  Most who I speak to on SWG, had the same feeling about whatever version they started playing.  It appears that Shelby got the same thing out of NGE, I know that my wife did as she still continues on and started just before GU-3.  I never let her put points in what she was going to lose so she never experienced that feeling of loss in a patch, either. I see SWG as a total mismanaged game.  I, and maybe 300,000 others were willing to overlook the bugs, do work-arounds, etc to continue.  I see SWG as a CHANGED product, many times, and in many variations, that appeals to less and less as the CHANGES took place.  But, I still see SWG as something special, in the way of games and in experimentation, I guess.

No other game has even came close as you say about STO, "these jokers make SWG look good".  A year or so ago, I had the privilage of having a months long pm convo with Chris Klug, an Professor in MMO development and the Creative Director of SGW.  I found him extreemly versed in MMO development, marketing, etc.  And when the subject at hand got around to sandbox, he said about the same thing as the writer here at MMORPG.com just did about sandbox.  That storyline based MMOs were where "it's at, now" and when I posed my argument to that point, I was asked, "Hey, aren't you one of the guys over at the MMORPG.com refuge forums that hates SWG?"  Shoulda tipped me off right there, but I blew past that with, any hatred I have is for the administrator of SWG, not for the game, itself.  So, I guess he got that out of what we're doing here.  A misconstrued message, probably somewhere out of the middle of what us and SOE have been putting out.  (SOE spin-) SOE had such a bad game they had to CHANGE it in a massive manner and without coming here and reading the message, he assumed that we were just touting how bad it was.

To be honest, I believe we have made somewhat of a difference.  Like I said before, if you have almost 1/2 million out there that have nothing good to say, that is going to picked up by someone.  SOE sure thinks we have made a difference, at least that their spin, anyway.  With their downgrading of past customers being their total problem,per them, and to a certain percentage, I would guess they are right.  We are a vocal group.  We do not shy away from telling others about the mismanagement of SWG.  We have no qualms about touting how our favorite game or product we were paying for was CHANGED on us, in a single day, with a single patch, and we warn everyone who will listen.  Expecially if the industry accepts that the message is miscontrued  to the point of SWG is just bad.

As I asked before;  has our message, with all the good intentions in the world, been miscontrued to the point of........... that we will never experience a decent game made in the sandbox model again?  How can a AAA studio, or a group of investors, for that matter, actualy sit around a table and discuss making another attempt while the only sandbox MMO (and yes, I am aware that the sandbox was what SOE tried to destroy with CU/NGE), outside of Eve which is known as a niche game, flounders?  Have we been great at our volume control and not so good with the content of the message as a whole?  Or has SOE polluted the message with their usual spin?  Either way, looks to me now, like we both, SOE and us, lose. They lose their game to loss of subs and we don't have 1 to play, either.  Altho, a good flightless bird can still make us come out on top, I guess.

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