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My thoughts on open communication!

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > General Discussion
My thoughts on open communication!

Warshades's Avatar


Warshades
11.14.2012 , 06:36 PM | #1
Whoever thought that withholding information from subs. is a good thing needs to have their head examined. And I dont blame Bioware as this is common practice in varrying degrees across the industry. But its time we reevaluate this concept.

My point!

When a company decides to create a game it begins with negoitiations, secret deals, meetings, etc. Nobody knows anything because until the go ahead is given, there is no point. But afterwards begins a steady outpouring of information. First the initial announcement, usually 4-5 years before release. Over the next 2-3 years the team will attend different comicons or other conventions to put out information, begin to build hype, show some cgi of the game or maybe show some of the main character like Darth Malgamus. (sp?)

Then about 2 years before release the dev team begins to show and explain the systems, mechanics and some content that will be coming. This is about the time that many people will start to follow the games, watch the forums and become interested.

A year until release begins the closed beta which for hardcore fans is the best time because sites like betaleaks begin to show the game and players really become excited about whats to come. There is still limited information and only a few thousand or hundred thousand players that begin the religious like following of the game.

Then the NDA is lifted, a few months before release. Information pours out. We get the good, the bad and the ugly. But for all the information that is out there, it is also the most exciting time for the vast majority of mmo players. this is our first look at the game since most dont go to betaleak sites. Anticipation is at its highest. And people by the millions or close to it begin preordering their copies.

Day 1, everyone plays and all is well. All the hype, or atleast most of it is met with enthusiastic players diving head first into a great game. But something has changed. Information about upcoming content, bug fixes, class changes, and everything else goes dark. Its like 10,000 voices who were crying out for good or for bad were suddenly silenced. No more talk. No more hype. No more words for our developers.

The truth is that they become so tight lipped about anything that you wonder why they even have forums at all. Information on small patches isnt given till the day of release. Large patches are only patch notes for a week or two before release. They give tidbits of information on some upcoming content but nothing worth noting. Just look at the information about Makeb. Little bits here and there. But really the information drives more questions that it answers. The hype is gone. the enthusiasm is gone. All that remains is our frustrations.

I plead to bioware. Give us excitement. Give us enthusiasm. Give us perspective and understanding. Give us something to look forward to. Bring back the hype. Bring back hope. Bring Back communication!!!!
“Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.”

Gomla's Avatar


Gomla
11.14.2012 , 06:47 PM | #2
Some people love the "communication" here.

As someone who has lurked around since before beta I have to ask, what communication?

Everything I see in the dev tracker I can work out for myself "we're looking into it, coming soon, it will be fixed in the next patch" and variations on those is about all I see.

Oh, and the famous "I can't go into detail but it will be exciting" .... yeah, thanks for that.

Great game, bad talkers.

I think companies should just stop hiring community teams. The rarely speak in a lot of games I play so it would save them a fortune on paying wages.

Lord_Ravenhurst's Avatar


Lord_Ravenhurst
11.14.2012 , 06:51 PM | #3
Where is Jay-O ?

He even disappeared from the update videos.

Silence is golden, but not for a game director of a MMO

mentalmackem's Avatar


mentalmackem
11.14.2012 , 08:13 PM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by Warshades View Post
Whoever thought that withholding information from subs. is a good thing needs to have their head examined. And I dont blame Bioware as this is common practice in varrying degrees across the industry. But its time we reevaluate this concept.

My point!

When a company decides to create a game it begins with negoitiations, secret deals, meetings, etc. Nobody knows anything because until the go ahead is given, there is no point. But afterwards begins a steady outpouring of information. First the initial announcement, usually 4-5 years before release. Over the next 2-3 years the team will attend different comicons or other conventions to put out information, begin to build hype, show some cgi of the game or maybe show some of the main character like Darth Malgamus. (sp?)

Then about 2 years before release the dev team begins to show and explain the systems, mechanics and some content that will be coming. This is about the time that many people will start to follow the games, watch the forums and become interested.

A year until release begins the closed beta which for hardcore fans is the best time because sites like betaleaks begin to show the game and players really become excited about whats to come. There is still limited information and only a few thousand or hundred thousand players that begin the religious like following of the game.

Then the NDA is lifted, a few months before release. Information pours out. We get the good, the bad and the ugly. But for all the information that is out there, it is also the most exciting time for the vast majority of mmo players. this is our first look at the game since most dont go to betaleak sites. Anticipation is at its highest. And people by the millions or close to it begin preordering their copies.

Day 1, everyone plays and all is well. All the hype, or atleast most of it is met with enthusiastic players diving head first into a great game. But something has changed. Information about upcoming content, bug fixes, class changes, and everything else goes dark. Its like 10,000 voices who were crying out for good or for bad were suddenly silenced. No more talk. No more hype. No more words for our developers.

The truth is that they become so tight lipped about anything that you wonder why they even have forums at all. Information on small patches isnt given till the day of release. Large patches are only patch notes for a week or two before release. They give tidbits of information on some upcoming content but nothing worth noting. Just look at the information about Makeb. Little bits here and there. But really the information drives more questions that it answers. The hype is gone. the enthusiasm is gone. All that remains is our frustrations.

I plead to bioware. Give us excitement. Give us enthusiasm. Give us perspective and understanding. Give us something to look forward to. Bring back the hype. Bring back hope. Bring Back communication!!!!
Im 99% sure the reason they dont tell us much is if for some reason the plans change deadlines cant be met etc etc the forums fills up with posts of YOU PROMISED US THIS IM QUITTING topics, which isnt good for business eiether

Andryah's Avatar


Andryah
11.14.2012 , 08:27 PM | #5
Fact: Communications on non-public information about any aspect of an MMO rests with the MMO producer. It's true for all MMOs, and this one is no exception.

Desire: players desire to know more information... always.

What we have here is the well established perenial conflict between Fact and Desire in the MMO playerbase. Fact wins. Desire can only be self-managed or decomposed into frustration.
Forum disputatio ------> est completum ineptias.

Costello's Avatar


Costello
11.14.2012 , 09:01 PM | #6
My experience with MMO's often shows a predictable timeline.

The Pre-launch Phase: Devs don't tell the players much of anything. What is told is often a few well known facts about the game. An example of this was WAR with every interview being about RvR and whaaaaa or whatever noice orcs make. Generally hype builds well during this peroid cause people assume that despite no mention of end game or crafting or whatever it will be there.

Launch: Thanks to a lot of sales (maybe generated by the hype or just the MMO gamer who want to get in on the ground level) the devs feel that they know what they are doing. Communication dries up cause people are in game and not on the forums. If you want to know what the game is about get in game and play it. And the devs can show large sale figures showing they know what they are doing and they don't have to listen to stupid players.

2 months to 6 months: People start asking the questions the haters had been asking pre-launch. Where is this much needed feature or what is being done about this or when will there be new content. Subs start to drop off in this period as the game doesn't meet the vastly hyped expectations. Whatever the reason people start getting feed up and the forums become active the hate starts. Many think back to pre-launch when people were asking about features that should have been implanted or at least discussed rather than the devs going over the same few selling points.

6 months +: Subs are falling and something needs to be done. Not fix the game of course that would cost money and time (neither of which are quick easy fixes) so the dev posts appear about greater communication. The remaining community is promised better communication. Most notably this happened after the nightmare that was the NGE. We had weekly or monthly updates, plans for improvements etc. Yes it would be a year before all classes got expertise but promises of greater communication.

Free to play: The communication becomes one way. A monthly state of the game letter is issued to explain what is going to happen soon. Long term players are not as interesting as short term players who play through the content purchase items/buffs/etc to make this easier then go elsehwere until something new appears.