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Title: Investor Press Release
Post by: Miasma on August 10, 2012, 09:44:46 AM
Doesn't sound good. (http://www.funcom.com/investors/the_secret_world_update)

Funcom reported in a stock notice the 6th of July that the company intended to update the market on The Secret World today. This update is based on current sales, press and gamer feedback and early indicators of subscription levels following the free 30 days game-time included in the game client.

Development since launch

Following the launch of The Secret World on the 3rd of July 2012, Funcom's share price has decreased significantly. The company attributes this mostly to the aggregate review score, the "Metascore", for the game at MetaCritic (www.metacritic.com) together with other public sources for tracking the performance of games.

While there are very positive reviews, there are as well mixed or average reviews from various press outlets, giving an aggregated score for The Secret World of 72 out of 100, which is to be considered low, and not in line with the positive feedback received during the beta phases from both press and players. Funcom is of course disappointed with achieving such a Metascore. A game like The Secret World, which is not based on a well-known brand, is normally dependent on positive press reviews to achieve successful initial sales, in addition - but not limited - to other factors like word of mouth.

Scenarios for The Secret World for the first 12 months following launch

Funcom has on several occasions presented two financial scenarios for the first 12 months following launch of the game; please refer to page 17 in the 1Q 2012 presentation *). Funcom does not consider it likely that either of them will be met.

To improve sales going forward, Funcom is currently enhancing distribution by launching the game on the Steam platform as well as focusing on key areas for improvement of the game and on-going activities on content updates, sales initiatives and communication. The effect of all these initiatives together with other factors impacting sales are difficult to predict, but based on the available early data, one scenario is that sales for the first 12 months following launch will be less than half of what was presented in the "Conan-like" scenario. It should be noted that the sales amount in the "Conan-like" scenario is significantly higher than for the game "Age of Conan", due to the assumption of better retention implemented in the scenario. Also it should be noted that the company has significantly lower operational cost for The Secret World than what was the case for Age of Conan. As less initial sales than expected is considered an indicator of impairment, the company is currently evaluating the need for recognizing an impairment loss for the game in the profit and loss statement.

Retention

Funcom is pleased to see that gamer satisfaction is high, with user score of 8.4 out of 10 and higher on www.metacritic.com and other sites like mmorpg.com. This is in line with the beta surveys and beta players' feedback that the company received prior to launch. The company considers this a positive indicator of high customer satisfaction, and a solid foundation to build on the positive and engaged community Funcom has established with The Secret World.

First indication of churn is more positive than for Age of Conan, and the in-game store is performing as expected. The add-on packs are performing better than expected. Also higher than expected sales are going directly through the online download stores like EA's Origin and Funcom's own storefront, generating more profitable sales for the company.

A possible scenario going forward is that the game will sell less than both of the two above mentioned scenarios the first 12 months following launch, but with high customer satisfaction, it will generate a more stable subscriber base than the game Age of Conan. Over time, this will enable Funcom to retain more customers and generate higher revenue.

Immediate cost-adjustment initiatives

Funcom is currently implementing several cost-adjustment initiatives due to the expected lower initial revenues from The Secret World to secure future positive cash flows.

Next update

The next update of The Secret World will be given in the 2Q 2012 report to be published 28th August.

Badhoevedorp, The Netherlands, 10th August, 2012Funcom N.V.
This information is subject of the disclosure requirements acc. to §5-12 of vphl (Norwegian Securities Trading Act)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: calapine on August 10, 2012, 09:49:21 AM
So that 4 out of 10 douchebag reviewer with his blog now affects stock prices? Especially since there are only about 8 reviews on metacritic. Awesome...


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 10, 2012, 09:58:57 AM
Yep.  It's really bad to peg performance to metacritic, but then the stock market is insane these days anyways...


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Segoris on August 10, 2012, 10:37:51 AM
Reports like this should also show reviews and critcisms of the dbags reviewing on metacritic, would make this more fun to pay attention to and give more insight as to how out of touch some reviewers truly are.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Modern Angel on August 10, 2012, 10:46:03 AM
Expect serious bloodletting. Been chatting with by best friend. I'm fucking gutted for them, but I'm also seriously pissed off about Metacritic being a metric which guides job loss now.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: calapine on August 10, 2012, 11:15:43 AM
So what does that mean? Falling stockprices lead to employee layoffs leading to less future development and content, resulting in another failed MMO-experiment on live-support in the F2P garbage bin?

Can someone cheer me up, please?  :heartbreak:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: trias_e on August 10, 2012, 11:26:42 AM
Nothing has pissed me off more recently than seeing the absolutely atrocious reviews of this game.  People reviewing beta events and passing them off as release reviews by delaying the review (http://www.g4tv.com/games/pc/46075/the-secret-world/review/).  PC Gamer giving a 69/100, despite the fact that the review reads as though a much higher score should have been given to it (and I'd imagine it would have been higher if it hadn't been lol-funcom making the game).  And now knowing that because of these hacks people will lose their jobs over it...Fuck reviewers and fuck metacritic.  This is a system which includes Tom Chick because he slaps a score on the end of his inane blog posts, and ignores far superior reviews (http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/07/03/wot-i-think-the-secret-world/) due to lack of quantization.  And people take this seriously?  Sad.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Segoris on August 10, 2012, 11:29:54 AM
So what does that mean? Falling stockprices lead to employee layoffs leading to less future development and content, resulting in another failed MMO-experiment on live-support in the F2P garbage bin?

Can someone cheer me up, please?  :heartbreak:

Pretty much what it seems like. As for cheering up, either take solace in knowing that at least it's not ff14 levels of shitty. Otherwise, if still needed, I'm sure a picture of a kitty or cookie or both can be posted

Sadly that still won't change the fact that metacritic as a metric is bullshit

Nothing has pissed me off more recently than seeing the absolutely atrocious reviews of this game.

I have to say that I don't mind absolutely atrocious reviews, people can, will, and should have their opinions and that's fine. What's disgusting is atrocious reviews based on months old product which has had many updates and corrections since the reviewer played said item for what most likely amounted to about an hour's worth of time. That is compounded by what is going on now with potentially putting people out of work beceause someone's a piece of shit that somehow gets paid to be a fucktard.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Modern Angel on August 10, 2012, 11:55:22 AM
It's complete nonsense. If we're at the point at which a game which is getting overwhelmingly good word of mouth from the players ends up with the creators getting shitcanned because of reviewers in the most corrupt and payola form of entertainment journalism which exists, that needs to be called out. Forcefully.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: HaemishM on August 10, 2012, 11:57:17 AM
Basing a review of Secret World on beta is a really fucking bad idea. Hell, I played it in beta and wasn't going to buy it. I'm glad my wife messed up and ordered two copies so I was kind of "forced" to play it, and it's really shitty that metacritic scores are determining whether people get laid off or not. This is one of the most obvious situations of "reviewing an MMOG without giving it enough time" really fits, because it takes probably halfway through Kingsmouth before the game really starts to shine. It passed my 30-minute test for MMOGs (if it ain't in anyway fun or interesting after 30 minutes, it never will be) while SWTOR did not.

So I guess F2P in six months is probably accurate.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Nevermore on August 10, 2012, 12:30:29 PM
Unfortunately at least part of this is due to the sins of Funcom's past coming home to roost.  If this exact same game had been released by Blizzard, it would be hailed as the Next Big Thing.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Modern Angel on August 10, 2012, 12:38:33 PM
OR! or! Reviewers could review the game at hand and not worry about who made it. Which is nuts in a payola scam scheme like gaming journalism, but we have to cling to our ideals.

The only sin from the past worth mentioning is AoC's flub, which would have given a better cushion if it had gone differently.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Threash on August 10, 2012, 12:47:24 PM
This is disappointing, this game deserved to do well.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Modern Angel on August 10, 2012, 12:50:18 PM
CFO is tossing around the term "in excess of 10%", which is actually way better than it seemed an hour ago.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ginaz on August 10, 2012, 12:53:13 PM
While the initial outlook might be bad, long term things start to look better.  Player retention seems like it will be high, growth might be steady and the revenue from the item shop is good.  Most "investors" are nothing more than gamblers looking for big profits in a short time.  Fuck those guys.  And fuck gaming "journalists".


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 10, 2012, 01:15:20 PM
I'm not sure how to drive a stake into Metacritic, but it needs to be done.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 10, 2012, 02:11:21 PM
Can we critique metacritic?  "1/10, would not use to rate again"


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: HaemishM on August 10, 2012, 03:06:49 PM
I will say, I do actually use Metacritic. Only, I don't use the pro reviews part, I look at the user reviews.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 10, 2012, 03:08:12 PM
I will say, I do actually use Metacritic. Only, I don't use the pro reviews part, I look at the user reviews.

Those are if anything even worse, if you're just looking at the numbers. People go on their little crusades to 0/10 a game because they don't like some choice, etc., without actually playing the game.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: kildorn on August 10, 2012, 03:13:10 PM
I'm not sure how to drive a stake into Metacritic, but it needs to be done.

Part of the problem is that the good review sites bailing on Metacritic just makes the site worse. A few sites refuse to put scores now so that you read the review. But all this means is they're no longer used for the metacritic ranking.

I thought metacritic was on it's way out for publisher metrics though. There's some other review aggregate site they're switching to which will turn into a pile of shit in a matter of months again.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: trias_e on August 10, 2012, 03:20:06 PM
I will say, I do actually use Metacritic. Only, I don't use the pro reviews part, I look at the user reviews.

Those are if anything even worse, if you're just looking at the numbers. People go on their little crusades to 0/10 a game because they don't like some choice, etc., without actually playing the game.

Generally speaking, they're alright.  The only problem is people flip out over big name games that don't meet their expectations.  High user scores can usually be trusted in my experience, but low user scores are often the result of hysterics.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: HaemishM on August 10, 2012, 03:22:02 PM
I don't follow the score, I read what people ACTUALLY WRITE about the games, good and bad. Telling the shills and the shitheels apart is pretty easy.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rendakor on August 10, 2012, 03:23:16 PM
Generally speaking, they're alright.  The only problem is people flip out over big name games that don't meet their expectations.  High user scores can usually be trusted in my experience, but low user scores are often the result of hysterics.
This logic makes no sense. If a game gets good reviews, it's probably good, but if it gets bad reviews it's probably not actually bad. So all games are good.  :uhrr:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 10, 2012, 03:28:32 PM
Generally speaking, they're alright.  The only problem is people flip out over big name games that don't meet their expectations.  High user scores can usually be trusted in my experience, but low user scores are often the result of hysterics.
This logic makes no sense. If a game gets good reviews, it's probably good, but if it gets bad reviews it's probably not actually bad. So all games are good.  :uhrr:

Not at all. The point is that 0/10 ratings artificially depress game scores. Almost no game that has ever been released truly deserves a zero. I have exactly one on my list (Elemental, as if I needed to say it).

And yes, there are shill reviews that artifically increase them as well, but those are generally fewer in number because they don't result from organized 4chan campaigns to protest that they made Shepard a ginger, or whatever.

EDIT: 10/10ing a game that only deserves a 6 or 7 also moves the dial less than 0/10ing the same game.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: trias_e on August 10, 2012, 03:38:37 PM
Generally speaking, they're alright.  The only problem is people flip out over big name games that don't meet their expectations.  High user scores can usually be trusted in my experience, but low user scores are often the result of hysterics.
This logic makes no sense. If a game gets good reviews, it's probably good, but if it gets bad reviews it's probably not actually bad. So all games are good.  :uhrr:

I never said that all games that get bad user scores are actually good.  Or even most.  But there are some games with low ratings, especially big-name games with high expectations, that are brought down by angry hysterical gamers giving unfair 0/10 ratings.  If you look at the site and check out the ratings, you'd see that for the most part user scores look solid, but there are some glaring exceptions on the low end.  Diablo 3 and Mass Effect 3 have 4.0's for their average user score.  This isn't indicative of the quality of these games, whatever you want to say about their shortcomings.  

Yeah, so what Ingmar said.  It's certainly true that some gamers may be giving unfair 10/10 ratings to games they enjoy as well, but as he said there is less impact if the game should be a 7 or 8.  I also think in general the angry gamers are going to be more vocal than the happy ones.  The user scores are more often lower than review scores, probably for this reason.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: 01101010 on August 10, 2012, 03:39:48 PM
Never been on metacritic but it sounds like the popular clique table in the cafeteria in high school... only this high school is filled with geeks and gamers. Pass.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Falconeer on August 10, 2012, 04:39:57 PM
*Sigh*

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fstocklink.no%2FArticle.aspx%3Fid%3D95293&act=url

Quote
Funcom management: - we have sifted errors

By: Karsten Olav Coldevin - StockLink.no
Published: 08/10/2012 1:35:41 p.m. - Updated: 10/08/2012 1:37:57 p.m.   
More Sharing ServicesShare
The company sees itself forced to cut the number of employees.

Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in Funcom Bjorn Toften, said sales figures. (AA Nilsen / Stock Link iMarkedet)

This story was first published on iMarkedet Xpress.

- The date the update was known and communicated and, in our opinion comes at a reasonable time, and we're still in an early phase of the game, says Bjorn Toften, finance director of Funcom in connection with the current disappointing update from the company.

Sales of the new game The Secret World is now suggested to be half of what The Age of Conan delivered. Read more here .

Read also: - The game has flopped , and Schibsted alerts cutbacks .

He also thought it was prudent to wait until the company had a first indication of the proportion of buyers of the game that decided to move to a subscription to the game.

- The indications on the subscription side is positive, but we have only early numbers and we will closely monitor those who come close to the time where they must decide whether to go to a subscription.

For a narrow
The company believes one of the main reasons for the low sales are reviews of the game that provides a meta score of 72 percent.

- When the game is built on a well-known brands, we need a higher score among the press, he says and adds that the reviewers criticized among other bugs in the game.

He also sees that there is a risk that the company has been charged against a too narrow target audience.

Toften is now keen to have a positive cash flow in the company and must now make substantial cost savings in the company.

- This includes staff reductions, says have and emphasizes that he does not raise capital on the agenda today.


(Google translated from Norwegian)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Quinton on August 10, 2012, 05:36:40 PM
That's really unfortunate.  There are some issues, but it seems pretty damn good for an MMO launch.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Miasma on August 10, 2012, 06:19:14 PM
I don't know if this is real but someone is claiming a bunch of GMs were laid off today.

http://www.mmorpg.com/discussion2.cfm/thread/360114/page/1


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Falconeer on August 10, 2012, 06:26:41 PM
Quote
and second AoC's launch was bad because the Norweigan government forced the company and all of it's employees to take a 1 month vacation right after launch due to labor laws .  This is why AoC's launch was so bad.  None of the problems in the first month could be addressed because none of the developers could come to work.

 :awesome_for_real:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Threash on August 10, 2012, 06:37:43 PM
I assume this means all those promises of monthly content updates are as likely to happen as swtors now?


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Abelian75 on August 10, 2012, 06:56:33 PM
God dammit.  I mean, this doesn't come as a surprise, given that I was so put off by the Funcom brand that I almost didn't even try this game (and I try every MMO), but this is probably my favorite game in a while.  Definitely deserves to do at least OK, and CERTAINLY didn't deserve a remarkably low metacritic score.  Such a goddamn shame.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Modern Angel on August 10, 2012, 07:00:19 PM
Quote
and second AoC's launch was bad because the Norweigan government forced the company and all of it's employees to take a 1 month vacation right after launch due to labor laws .  This is why AoC's launch was so bad.  None of the problems in the first month could be addressed because none of the developers could come to work.

 :awesome_for_real:

I think everyone in the world should have the Norwegian summer vacation but there's a hefty kernel of truth to the bit about AoC.

Also, I heard on pretty good authority that the GM staffing for TSW launch was heavily slanted toward temp/contract employees, rather than salaried positions as they had for AoC, specifically to make it easier to do this.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Cadaverine on August 10, 2012, 07:25:39 PM
It's a damn shame, alright.  This will inevitably put a dent in their sub numbers/sales, making it even harder for Funcom to keep it afloat.  And yet again, all the wrong lessons will be taken from it all.

I blame Tom Chick.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 10, 2012, 08:29:35 PM
Jeezus. I just got back from vacation, wondering if there'd been any folks quiting. Now instead I find that instead, the game may go belly-up simply because they didn't hit early sales.

It's fun to blame metacritic. It's one of the only games in town for the vast majority of investors who are a) not going to play a game; and, b) certainly not going to read a review of it.

But I don't think their 72 was the problem, much as it makes it an easy target. I'd go instead with everything folks have been saying since the first teaser content went on their site. It's a cool setting, but it bears no resemblance to anything people have gotten used to. It's not western nor eastern fantasy, it's not a known IP, the game mechanic itself isn't quite like anything else, it's from the same people who made AoC which is still recent in everyone's mind, and AO, which I'd guess most veterans still regard as one of the worst launches ever. And this game was largely for MMO veterans.

Heck, given all this, I'd have thought management would be dancing at a 72.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 10, 2012, 08:38:40 PM
Nah, because the 72 comes from people who tried the game. All the stuff you mention, is a barrier to ever buying it in the first place. The hope is that you get a high review number because that will help people overcome all that stuff and try it. A low number just gives them another reason to stay on the sidelines. So it isn't everything, certainly, but it is a very visible problem.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Kageru on August 10, 2012, 08:42:27 PM
Meta-critic is fine for what it is, they're just reading far too much into it when they use it as a true guide to a games success. At the least they should be cropping some outliers and collecting trends over time if they're going to use it in that fashion.

If there's a one month holiday it should not have come as a surprise and their launch date should have been designed with that in mind. They also started the promotional advertising waaay too early, a lot of it was really obscure and the game is treading new ground in genre. Conan did get a lead in from having a recognized name and genre. And then there's the funcom penalty. Still, they might get a boost from being on steam.

Anyway, I hope they can do a slow growth and do well. But I still think they're going to be under a lot of pressure to keep up a flow of content.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Modern Angel on August 10, 2012, 09:35:17 PM

If there's a one month holiday it should not have come as a surprise and their launch date should have been designed with that in mind.

Oh, absolutely. But... FUNCOM. It is/was the decision of about six or seven people at the top and it was a bad one.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: kildorn on August 10, 2012, 09:40:04 PM
Metacritic ratings also aren't used on a sliding scale of "how well should it do", it's 75+ or abject failure. There's a reason companies got in a bunch of trouble over paying off reviewers and attacking low scores: a low score can completely and utterly fuck the company's employees regardless of the quality of the game or it's return on investment.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Feverdream on August 10, 2012, 11:22:37 PM
Isn't Tom Chick one of the idiots who gave Diablo 3 a high score (over 85%, I think; I don't recall specifically).  I used to be neutral about "professional" reviewers, but I've gotten to the point over the last few years that I feel they are just useless leeches who wouldn't even be able to recognize a new game with potential.  That goes for PC Gamer and their ilk as well.

Yes, I'm annoyed.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Kail on August 10, 2012, 11:31:05 PM
[snip...]the game may go belly-up...[snip...]

Is this really a concern?  I just saw this on Steam and have been waffling on the purchase...  I'm not above dumping $50.00 into a single player game in the hopes of saving Developer X, but if I grab an MMO and it goes under, I've got nothing to show for it but a lighter wallet.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: HaemishM on August 10, 2012, 11:35:15 PM
I'd go instead with everything folks have been saying since the first teaser content went on their site. It's a cool setting, but it bears no resemblance to anything people have gotten used to. It's not western nor eastern fantasy, it's not a known IP, the game mechanic itself isn't quite like anything else

So we can blame all the things that are great about this game?  :oh_i_see:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Kageru on August 11, 2012, 02:44:50 AM

I don't think it's too much to argue that novelty, challenge and quality do not always correlate to mass appeal. At least they recognized and budgeted for that possibility so there's no shock factor.

I'm tempted to buy it on steam just to support them, but I just don't have the time for a subscription MMO at the moment.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: John Difool on August 11, 2012, 02:45:31 AM
[snip...]the game may go belly-up...[snip...]

Is this really a concern?  I just saw this on Steam and have been waffling on the purchase...  I'm not above dumping $50.00 into a single player game in the hopes of saving Developer X, but if I grab an MMO and it goes under, I've got nothing to show for it but a lighter wallet.

Check Amazon. There's a reseller listing there at $25 new with $4 shipping. At that price, well...if you are even only vaguely interested in the suspense/horror genre I can't see you not getting your money's worth. The game is hardly perfect but what they've done right they've done very well.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Tannhauser on August 11, 2012, 08:17:45 AM
I knew of this game, but it seemed to release under my radar.  And I'm an MMO fanatic. Marketing fail?  Also, Funcom's past shitty games cast a large shadow over The Secret World.  At least to me.  It's hard for me to get past my disappointment of AoC past Tortage.  Or the trainwreck of AO.

Having said that, I've been reading about TSW here and everyone seems to like it.  So I may buy it off Steam now but I kind of feel like a sucker going back to a ripoff mechanic.

If you take Metacritic seriously you should probably ask for help when you wipe your ass.






 


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: calapine on August 11, 2012, 11:34:20 AM
Just finished the G4TV.com review (http://www.g4tv.com/games/pc/46075/the-secret-world/review/), and feeling rather stabby. Here are the highlights:

Quote
The Secret World misses the mark in almost every way.
piss-poor voice acting, the game features almost no redeeming qualities.
The first thing I noticed when I started The Secret World was just how weak it looked.
Not only is it an ugly game, it’s also a game that at its core isn’t fun to play.
This is due to the game’s largest failure: a lack of classes or a leveling system.
The story is so weak and tortuous it hardly merits mention.
The writing is among the worst I have heard in a game and even the voice acting is hard to stomach.
Instead, the game is just too difficult to enjoy across the board. Mobs never really become easier to kill because you never really level above them.
The quests in the game are another serious weak point.
Most quests feel like time sinks without the comforting thought that at least you’re gaining experience and leveling.
Some quests require outside knowledge to solve, like say an obscure bible passage. But who in their right mind wants to exit a game, visit Google and look up a passage?
When describing my experience to one of my friends, she asked me, “is it free-to-play?” I replied that even if it were, the cost would still be too high.

To misspell any doubts: Yes, this is a staff review. And yes, it features among the aggregate that makes up metacritic's 72/100 score. To think people get layed off over this... :oh_i_see:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: caladein on August 11, 2012, 12:03:15 PM
I don't think there's anything really wrong with what you bolded though.

The voice acting is occasionally awful and the lip syncing even more so.  It's not a strong engine and the real world setting and art direction do it no favors.  Not everyone likes deck builders.  The setting and the game's occasional ARG-like qualities are also pretty easy to find unlikable.

Everyone who recommends this game does so with heavy qualifications or caveats, sometimes implied in the case of Falc.  Guess what happens when someone who doesn't fall into those qualifications has to play the game?  An uncharitable review, but not one that's off-base.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 11, 2012, 12:21:33 PM
I partially agree with caladein. The review isn't off base if your audience is the same "I'm bored with WoW but want more WoW" that flocked to and then fled SWTOR. They just didn't seem to have any open mind at all to trying to learn how the pieces fit together. That too is playing to their base though. It's a strange game. But most gamers don't want strange. They want more of what they're already comfortable with, and maybe a few tweaks.

I'd go instead with everything folks have been saying since the first teaser content went on their site. It's a cool setting, but it bears no resemblance to anything people have gotten used to. It's not western nor eastern fantasy, it's not a known IP, the game mechanic itself isn't quite like anything else

So we can blame all the things that are great about this game?  :oh_i_see:
Heh, yea, basically. tl;dr: niche-y game built with a AAA budget from lol Funcom.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: palmer_eldritch on August 11, 2012, 12:29:44 PM
I'd say the review is very off base.

The writing and storyline can't seriously be described as "weak" or "among the worst" by MMO standards. To give one example, I played Rift up to max level and honestly can't remember a single interesting thing any NPC said.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder I'm sure, but is "ugly" really the word to describe this game? www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7zybmNQh2U
Mobs do become easier to kill as you become more powerful (at least, the ones in the lower level zones do, which is what this guy means). He's simply incorrect on that point. It's debatable whether the fact that the game kind-of does have a level system is actually a strength, but the reviewer clearly hasn't played the game enough to understand how it works.
I think most people who've played the game would agree that the quests are far more interesting than the "kill ten foozles" you get in most MMOs. When they work. You do get a few traditional MMO quests, but they are the exception rather than the norm - most of the quests have some kind of twist or puzzle or unique little game mechanic. The reviewer would have a fair point about bugs, if he stuck to complaining about those.
He claims that in order to perform investigation quests you need to exit the game. In fact, you can load up Google in game, using the in-game browser. It also would surely have been reasonable to mention that you don't need to do these quests, as there's plenty of quests which largely involve shooting things to do instead.
If the voice acting is occasionally awful it's also occasionally very good. Overall, "piss-poor voice acting" is not a reasonable summary.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: palmer_eldritch on August 11, 2012, 12:36:03 PM
I partially agree with caladein. The review isn't off base if your audience is the same "I'm bored with WoW but want more WoW" that flocked to and then fled SWTOR. They just didn't seem to have any open mind at all to trying to learn how the pieces fit together. That too is playing to their base though. It's a strange game. But most gamers don't want strange. They want more of what they're already comfortable with, and maybe a few tweaks.

I'd go instead with everything folks have been saying since the first teaser content went on their site. It's a cool setting, but it bears no resemblance to anything people have gotten used to. It's not western nor eastern fantasy, it's not a known IP, the game mechanic itself isn't quite like anything else

So we can blame all the things that are great about this game?  :oh_i_see:
Heh, yea, basically. tl;dr: niche-y game built with a AAA budget from lol Funcom.

Yeah, a lot of us think of "MMO" as a genre which includes UO, a Tale in a Desert, WoW, Eve etc, while plenty of mainstream gamers think MMO means "WoW, games like WoW and uh wtf?". It's like if every FPS had been Quake or a Quake rip-off and then somebody releases Deux Ex.

But I do think a games reviewer should have some idea that a game can be different to other games and still be good. If someone gets confused when they are exposed to an MMO that's not Diku then it's reasonable to call them a bad reviewer. There's no reason a good reviewer wouldn't explain that this game won't be for everyone.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: trias_e on August 11, 2012, 12:44:03 PM
I don't think there's anything really wrong with what you bolded though.

The voice acting is occasionally awful and the lip syncing even more so.  It's not a strong engine and the real world setting and art direction do it no favors.  Not everyone likes deck builders.  The setting and the game's occasional ARG-like qualities are also pretty easy to find unlikable.

Everyone who recommends this game does so with heavy qualifications or caveats, sometimes implied in the case of Falc.  Guess what happens when someone who doesn't fall into those qualifications has to play the game?  An uncharitable review, but not one that's off-base.

The voice acting is never awful in my experience.  I'd like to see examples of the awful voice acting, because I haven't encountered one bit that stood out as poor.  It's ranged from fantastic to average.  Overall the voice acting is one of the strong points of the game.

The art direction is another strong point of the game.  TSW has an excellent visual atmosphere and some really awesome monster models (although lack of variety there) which really bring the setting to life.  The only weak link is the human character models, which I admit can be a bit weak and oddly animated.  Everything else is top notch stuff however.

The bolded parts of the review are a joke.  Misses the mark in every way?  Nope. The story is tortuous as to not merit explanation?  The writing is some of the worst in gaming?  That's absolutely absurd.  It's an ugly game?  Nope.  The quests are a major weak point and a time sink?  Are we comparing them to other MMORPGs here?  If so, that's also untrue.  Rift and SWTOR have more grind and time sink elements in their questing by far.


I recommend this game with only one caveat:  It's probably the best single player RPG to come out in quite a while, but the MMO elements are shaky, so if you're primarily looking for the MMO elements the game may not satisfy.  It's still probably going to end up as my game of the year regardless, but I'm more of a single player RPG kinda guy these days anyways.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 11, 2012, 12:50:26 PM
It basically reads like someone who tried the game, had no idea what the heck was going on, and rather than learn, got annoyed and ranted about it. That makes him a gamer rather than a reviewer, except that unlike our rants, his gets called out as potentially company-damaging. I agree with Palmer's "There's no reason a good reviewer wouldn't explain that this game won't be for everyone."

At the same time, as caladein said: even with all its uniqueness, the game can only be recommended with heavy caveats. That's why I would see 72 as "good". Except, companies don't, because anything that's ever gotten any type of marketing and PR budget isn't allowed to be below high 70s.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Tyrnan on August 11, 2012, 12:54:44 PM
Quote
There are also a number of animation issues, even this late into the beta...

Apart from his comments about the game being ugly (character models fair enough but the game as a whole?) and the story being weak, this is what really pisses me off about that review. If you're going to call yourself a professional reviewer at least review the fucking finished product. "This late into the beta" could be BWE1 for all we know if he was referring to the entire beta process. FunCom were putting out an insane amount of patches towards the end of beta. Granted most of them broke stuff as well as fixed it but on the whole the game moved in a positive direction from them.

If they were proper journalists they'd give the game a second review now that it's been out a month, and with a different reviewer since it's pretty obvious that guy will never like the game no matter what they do.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: HaemishM on August 11, 2012, 12:56:53 PM
That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular). You don't see some of the more interesting aspects of the skill system until late in that zone. And if you don't do the dungeons, you really aren't seeing a lot of the differences between it and WoW-like MMO's that make the game special.

I can see how he wouldn't like the game, but if he's bitching about investigation quests making you go outside the game and not mentioning the in-game browser, he played a beta version and didn't bother to update his experience to live.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: caladein on August 11, 2012, 01:39:19 PM
I didn't say that TSW had poor art direction.  What I tried to say was this: the game's realistic (versus cartoony) art direction and real world setting don't help mask that the engine or character models aren't good.

That's a small, subjetive, leap away from calling it ugly.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: jakonovski on August 11, 2012, 01:43:07 PM
Meh, they just released the wrong product at the wrong time at the wrong audience, with the wrong business model. Everything talked about in the articles and this thread was known beforehand to the developers.

I mean I love the game and all, but everyone could tell the whole thing was doomed.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 11, 2012, 01:59:26 PM
That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular).

Yeah, I was going to point out the sheriff in particular as well. The skateboard kid is also pretty bad, and the Southern skank chick really overdoes it, and not in the awesome-funny-overacting way. And while Wolf's voice acting is not bad, his lines go on for ever and ever and are generally terrible. Honestly none of the first island people stood out to me as *good* voice actors except for the Orochi group pair, Britishy McVillain, Deputy Andy, and the hippie camp guy. And a couple of those could have been missed by someone rushing through. Think you're probably right, they didn't make it much past the start of the 2nd zone. I think it would be a lot harder for anyone to pan the voice acting/writing if they made it to Innsmouth Academy.

I didn't say that TSW had poor art direction.  What I tried to say was this: the game's realistic (versus cartoony) art direction and real world setting don't help mask that the engine or character models aren't good.

That's a small, subjetive, leap away from calling it ugly.

Yeah, and the part that makes it such a missed opportunity on this front is that the monster models are generally really good. I think if they'd gone for a more stylized look on the character models, they could have really nailed it.

Darniaq, on 72 being "good": I suspect most people read Metacritic scores like they're grades. A 72 (in America obviously) is a C bordering on a C-. Nobody who went to a normal American school is ever going to perceive a 72 as a good result. Now I don't necessarily know how that translates to the Norwegian investor world, but certainly American *reviewers* are largely going to expect their numbers to be perceived like that I bet.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Threash on August 11, 2012, 02:51:05 PM
At least it should have some good word of mouth.  I started playing because so many people here liked it so much, and i talked a friend into trying the free weekend, she loved it and recommended it to her mom who is now trying to talk her husband into playing.  It's a good game, it should have good retention rates and good word of mouth.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 11, 2012, 02:58:58 PM
Yeah, the choice to have people first run into a bunch of New Englanders was not the best choice, voice-wise. That accent is annoying as shit to listen to, so even if the voice acting is good, it is hindered by the accent (which I think is the bigger problem with the sheriff lady, for example).

Honestly, the first area is kind of a mess from a first impressions standpoint. If you build yourself weird or a way you suck at, you're kinda screwed unless you already want to repeat content (and who wants to repeat non-PvP content that early?). The game doesn't actually let you know there's an in-game browser (I only knew because I hit "b" to open my bags early on). The quests are people with terrible accents reciting monologues at you, and sometimes what they ramble about has nothing whatsoever to do with what you wind up doing. And some of those monologues are LONG. The quest log is too small for how much they first throw at you and you find yourself running back and forth between spots repeatedly for no good reason. And the mob density is really, really annoying in some areas.


It DOES have some good word of mouth, though, and I've certainly recommended it to a few people that I thought would like it, even though I've kinda decided that ultimately this game doesn't float my boat enough for a monthly fee. But caledein is right, when you recommend the game it has to come with qualifications, and if someone isn't willing to put up with those, they're not gonna like the game. It's a niche game that's done well for its particular niche, but I don't think they wanted it to be a niche game.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: proudft on August 11, 2012, 03:18:38 PM
There was WAY too much talking for me.  The last monologue I listened to was the sheriff lady.  After that it was ESC for all of 'em for the rest of the free weekend and figure out the quests from the journal/sidebar.

Part of it was I didn't want to use up my limited free-weekend-game-playing time listening to monologues, but they really didn't grab me at all and I probably would have skipped them for 'real'.  Also, for some reason you couldn't skip line-by-line like SWTOR, to let them get to the damn point.  But basically, I want my games and my books/movies to be two separate things.  Standing there mute while someone goes on, and on, and on, about three times as long as they need to to get to the damn point isn't atmospheric or immersing or anything but boring for me.

I liked the skills system and combat fine, so-so on the setting, and the quest delivery system was the final "I'll wait for something else."  

So if I were rating it, I'd give it about  70.   :grin:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Phred on August 11, 2012, 05:03:39 PM
It's like if every FPS had been Quake or a Quake rip-off and then somebody releases Deux Ex.
Interestingly enough Deus Ex is another game Tom Chick is semi famous for hating.

Quote
But I do think a games reviewer should have some idea that a game can be different to other games and still be good. If someone gets confused when they are exposed to an MMO that's not Diku then it's reasonable to call them a bad reviewer. There's no reason a good reviewer wouldn't explain that this game won't be for everyone.

Can't emphasize this enough. We kind of expect game reviewers to have some perspective on games and a broader range of experience of them than a non-professional game writer.



Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: proudft on August 11, 2012, 05:36:54 PM
Basing any business decisions on any critic, even if it was the Roger Ebert of video games, seems incredibly stupid and bizarre, though.   There is some mumbling about how bad it is, at least:

http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/07/16/is-metacritic-ruining-the-games-industry

But who knows if it will have any effect.  The main problem with the game industry as a business is that everyone wants to be IN the games industry and so they are flooded with deluded people who are completely willing to sign up for ungodly hours of work for a shitty salary/contract/reward structure.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 11, 2012, 05:59:02 PM
Well, in that regard, I think the bigger problem is the complete disconnect between those in the industry due to passion and those running the numbers and holding the wallets. The former is populated by people doing it more for love than riches. The latter (at the bigger publishers anyway) are business-types who could be selling pens or consumer electronics for all that is different in how they make their decisions.

They focus on pre-launch marketing where most of the score-skewing reviews come from, and launch-week hit-driven sales largely driven by ad buys and in store placements. After that, the "service" might as well be some tax they pay for having launched a persistent world. Their focus then is either jumping to the next big thing (which makes me wonder if their Lego move was an act of pre-emptive desperation) or they shift attention to marketing/PR of the next box sale in the expansion.

Meanwhile, the truly dedicated developer is left wondering why they're out of a gig because of some uninformed review.

Darniaq, on 72 being "good": I suspect most people read Metacritic scores like they're grades. A 72 (in America obviously) is a C bordering on a C-. Nobody who went to a normal American school is ever going to perceive a 72 as a good result. Now I don't necessarily know how that translates to the Norwegian investor world, but certainly American *reviewers* are largely going to expect their numbers to be perceived like that I bet.

Yea. Which has always bothered me. To me that completely mitigates the need for a 100-point scale. If a game is a failure at the educational fail rating of 65, then really, any value below 65 isn't even worth printing (which is synonymous with <65 being "F"). But then, there's a whole lot about the rating system itself I'm not keen on  :-P


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: UnSub on August 11, 2012, 09:27:15 PM
The Metacritic review score is only a small part of this picture (and even if you remove Tom Chick's 40 score, TSW's Metacritic average score only goes up less than a point given the other 42 critic reviews).

TSW launched in a period where it is between SWOR and GW2, was pretty quiet on the marketing (or was drowned out by EA - take your pick) and was very different to anything else that a lot of AAA MMO players had seen. A lot of the reviews - both critic and user - appear based on initial impressions, which weren't always favourable, regardless of how deep / good TSW got after that. MMO players have been conditioned that a game that isn't fun in the first 3 hours isn't going to suddenly get fun after 40 hours and there's no reward for finding out for yourself.

And because it was Funcom, a lot of people probably expected the worst and then a transition to F2P. So why pay box cost and then a sub fee?

Regardless, it's bad news for Funcom and another helping of bad news for MMO titles.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Megrim on August 11, 2012, 10:55:13 PM
The Metacritic review score is only a small part of this picture (and even if you remove Tom Chick's 40 score, TSW's Metacritic average score only goes up less than a point given the other 42 critic reviews).

TSW launched in a period where it is between SWOR and GW2, was pretty quiet on the marketing (or was drowned out by EA - take your pick) and was very different to anything else that a lot of AAA MMO players had seen. A lot of the reviews - both critic and user - appear based on initial impressions, which weren't always favourable, regardless of how deep / good TSW got after that. MMO players have been conditioned that a game that isn't fun in the first 3 hours isn't going to suddenly get fun after 40 hours and there's no reward for finding out for yourself.

And because it was Funcom, a lot of people probably expected the worst and then a transition to F2P. So why pay box cost and then a sub fee?

Regardless, it's bad news for Funcom and another helping of bad news for MMO titles.

But the game was fun in the first 3 hours.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 11, 2012, 11:16:18 PM
If you knew what you were doing. But if you're a professional reviewer (or even a self-labeled one) fresh off reviewing Assassin's Creed Revelations and Rift, TSW is not easy to pick up. Doesn't matter if you played actual late beta or launch. This is a hard game. It works well, in that the unique systems are in place and functioning. But it in no way explains itself well, as others have said. You've got to want to like this game in order to get past the early wtf-is-this-wheel/ where's-my-main-heal/ why-can't-i-skip-dialog moments.

Reviewers don't have time for that stuff, and ding it as a result.

Which is unfortunate, and why word of mouth is way more important at this point than any PR campaign they could put together now. It's a great game out of the box, and has great potential if they can manage the costs and retain the talent for mission writing that they have.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Surlyboi on August 12, 2012, 12:00:39 AM
Reviewers are fucktards then. If I could pick this up, anyone can.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: UnSub on August 12, 2012, 06:29:41 AM
I read a number of player reviews that all went that it was 'meh' in the first play session, so they didn't continue. Lots of "it's an interesting setting, but combat is so bland".

Or perhaps the last MMO they reviewed was SWOR, which played very well early on and TSW suffered as a result.

But again, it isn't just review scores behind this financial hole that Funcom now finds itself in.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Tannhauser on August 12, 2012, 07:39:29 AM
I haven't played, but it sounds like TSW doesn't have a fun/understandable newbie experience.  We've seen that a lot in MMO's.  Do they have a tutorial?  You throw a player in a non-diku MMO without some hand-holding you will get frustration.

Even AoC, their previous MMO, had a fun newbie experience and it lasted for all of Tortage.



Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 12, 2012, 07:47:24 AM
That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular). You don't see some of the more interesting aspects of the skill system until late in that zone. And if you don't do the dungeons, you really aren't seeing a lot of the differences between it and WoW-like MMO's that make the game special.
It may have bothered you, but her accent was dead on.

The reviewer was too stupid to understand anything about what the game was trying to be.  He only wanted WoW, and when a game dared, dared, to be different, he savaged it.  Even if he had gotten WoW, he probably would have rated it low because it wasn't WoW.

Everyone one of his points was either outright wrong or subjective opinion passed off as factual information.  The dude could work for FOX with skills like that.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Abelian75 on August 12, 2012, 11:53:58 AM
I haven't played, but it sounds like TSW doesn't have a fun/understandable newbie experience.  We've seen that a lot in MMO's.  Do they have a tutorial?  You throw a player in a non-diku MMO without some hand-holding you will get frustration.

Even AoC, their previous MMO, had a fun newbie experience and it lasted for all of Tortage.



I don't actually agree that it doesn't have a fun/understandable newbie experience, though.  I wouldn't sing its praises or anything, but I was pretty pulled in immediately.  I think the reviewers just assumed the game was going to be shit (just like I did, honestly) and saw what they wanted to see so they could quickly bang out a review of a game without having to actually pay attention.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Hoax on August 12, 2012, 12:33:21 PM
There are 3 channels with a total of 5 people watching TSW being streamed on twitch.

The problem this game has is that it is for people who have played a lot more than just WoW and appreciate the learning curve and new ideas and systems. However at the same time TSW was made by the company with maybe the worst reputation among that segment of players.

They could have the next game that could grow the way EVE did but I doubt it not because it isn't as "good" as eve but because the game doesn't lend itself to people getting invested the way eve's single server all player driven gameworld did/does.

I think TSW has always had the problems DDO and SWTOR have, namely I'm not sure why those games were ever trying to be MMO's. Why isn't this game a Borderlands style co-op/sp game with dress up and lewt and leveling?


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Segoris on August 12, 2012, 12:45:29 PM
Just finished the G4TV.com review (http://www.g4tv.com/games/pc/46075/the-secret-world/review/), and feeling rather stabby. Here are the highlights:

Quote
piss-poor voice acting, the game features almost no redeeming qualities.
This is due to the game’s largest failure: a lack of classes or a leveling system.
The story is so weak and tortuous it hardly merits mention.
The writing is among the worst I have heard in a game and even the voice acting is hard to stomach.
Instead, the game is just too difficult to enjoy across the board. Mobs never really become easier to kill because you never really level above them.
The quests in the game are another serious weak point.
Most quests feel like time sinks without the comforting thought that at least you’re gaining experience and leveling.
Some quests require outside knowledge to solve, like say an obscure bible passage. But who in their right mind wants to exit a game, visit Google and look up a passage?

To misspell any doubts: Yes, this is a staff review. And yes, it features among the aggregate that makes up metacritic's 72/100 score. To think people get layed off over this... :oh_i_see:


Read the comments and hope that others do so as well, as the reviewer (rightfully so) got torn apart in the comments

I don't think there's anything really wrong with what you bolded though.

The voice acting is occasionally awful and the lip syncing even more so.  It's not a strong engine and the real world setting and art direction do it no favors.  Not everyone likes deck builders.  The setting and the game's occasional ARG-like qualities are also pretty easy to find unlikable.

Everyone who recommends this game does so with heavy qualifications or caveats, sometimes implied in the case of Falc.  Guess what happens when someone who doesn't fall into those qualifications has to play the game?  An uncharitable review, but not one that's off-base.

Some of the parts that were bolded shows just how little the reviewer even tried with this game and what they really wanted (WoW made even easier with a modern skin and their momma's tit to suck on when they die, but that won't be needed because the game the reviewer wants is so easy that death does not exist). The most telling part is their thinking that you need to leave the game to solve puzzle quests, instead of informing readers there's an in-game browser. Or stating that there are lots of buggy quests (there are) but without mentioning that they are pretty damn quickly becoming fixed - showing even further the person who reviewed it was reviewing a beta product.

I think if players are giving positive word of mouth with caveats, then reviewers who are fuck-tards should also provide a caveat at the beginning of their review, something along the lines of "I wanted to never have to think and be rewarded purples all day because I'm a dipshit and have no clue what I'm talking about but still get to review for G4" or something along those lines.

That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular). You don't see some of the more interesting aspects of the skill system until late in that zone. And if you don't do the dungeons, you really aren't seeing a lot of the differences between it and WoW-like MMO's that make the game special.
It may have bothered you, but her accent was dead on.

The reviewer was too stupid to understand anything about what the game was trying to be.  He only wanted WoW, and when a game dared, dared, to be different, he savaged it.  Even if he had gotten WoW, he probably would have rated it low because it wasn't WoW.

Everyone one of his points was either outright wrong or subjective opinion passed off as factual information.  The dude could work for FOX with skills like that.

^This.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Surlyboi on August 12, 2012, 01:52:20 PM
That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular). You don't see some of the more interesting aspects of the skill system until late in that zone. And if you don't do the dungeons, you really aren't seeing a lot of the differences between it and WoW-like MMO's that make the game special.
It may have bothered you, but her accent was dead on.

The reviewer was too stupid to understand anything about what the game was trying to be.  He only wanted WoW, and when a game dared, dared, to be different, he savaged it.  Even if he had gotten WoW, he probably would have rated it low because it wasn't WoW.

Everyone one of his points was either outright wrong or subjective opinion passed off as factual information.  The dude could work for FOX with skills like that.

^This.

Bingo. And people get mad when I'm so vocal about my disdain for WoW. It has turned into shorthand for MMO at this point and it's a piss-poor showing when every other game is held up to its ridiculous standard.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Kageru on August 12, 2012, 09:11:39 PM

The mainstream will always act as the benchmark, and as a result most reviews are going to favor the mainstream, this isn't exactly new. Nor that a lot of reviews are created after a pretty short time investment, especially relative to that required to judge an MMO.

Blaming the benchmark, in this case WoW, for causing the reviews to be inaccurate is wrong-headed.

That said GW2 isn't WoW and is getting decent reviews. I'd say half the problem was horror has always been far more niche than fantasy, "mystery" promotional material and game-play appeals to only a tiny subset of the market and novel game mechanics always present a challenge to the average gamer who really just wants to punch the button until everything dies. Plus it's funcom, and maybe they didn't grease enough palms.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Megrim on August 12, 2012, 09:51:24 PM
It makes sense to look at it from the point of view of the mainstream. What doesn't make sense is when they start writing things like "the combat is terrible", implying, presumably, that WoW combat is the benchmark, and is better. How the fuck does that work? At the very worst the combat is samesame. With a bit of a deeper look into it, TSW combat is miles ahead.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Threash on August 12, 2012, 10:15:30 PM
Look, i've been enjoying the game but the combat is pretty damn shitty.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rasix on August 12, 2012, 10:27:28 PM
No worse than any other MMO, really.  Has a bit more depth than most, and you actually have to move out of fire while doing leveling material.  However, it probably takes getting past Kingsmouth and a bit into Savage Coast before you start seeing the strengths.  Up into that point the story should have been carrying you along.  :awesome_for_real:

Game is niche of niche and from Funcom.  I'm not sure it ever had a fighting chance just based on that.

It's the most fun I think I've had in a MMO since back when they still had that new car smell.  Still, it has its frustrating moments (easily overcome if you don't mind cheating), and it's a bit rough around a couple edges.  I'll probably be done soon, because really, there really just isn't enough of it (and I don't care much about running instances to get myself into purps).  It's kind of a unique experience for me to feel like I've "beaten" a MMO, and one that I'm sure isn't great for sub numbers going forward.

However, it's probably good thing that the brand new thing coming out this month doesn't require a sub.  And really, fuck Pandas.  So, depending on content release, I could be around for a bit more. This news won't help that.  :|


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 12, 2012, 10:58:26 PM
Warning, this got a little stream-of-consciousness, and I can't seem to get it tightened up very well. Apologies in advance for the SirBrucing it will probably take to coherently reply to me.  :grin:

But, thinking about Megrim's disbelief that people could come away from TSW combat thinking it isn't worse than WoW's, I like WoW's combat (and by extension SWTOR's) a lot better, on reflection. I know I complain when games give me too many buttons, but I think TSW gives me too few. I end up feeling like I'm just not very versatile on a personal level despite the crazy number of possible combinations. There aren't very many interesting utility powers to pick from, I think this is part of my problem. Not much CC, not a lot of escape tools, etc. The Survivalism tree is basically the main source of personal utility tools and every one you take takes away one of your other powers. Characters in traditional class MMOs tend to be more well-rounded - you have tools for dealing with a bunch of different situations, instead of having to respec yourself for each one, or whatever. You get, say, your single target attacks, your AE attacks, your interrupt, your CC, and your personal defensive tools all together without having to choose between them. The price of the huge versatility of characters en masse is reduced versatility for any given character, I guess. And granted, it does encourage grouping, in a sense. Surely by now though it has been thoroughly proven that people in general don't really want that kind of encouragement. Better rewards for grouping gets people to group up; making solo characters feel 'weak' makes people change games, and not being able to take a reasonable suite of attacks and still fit in 'enough' utility powers definitely makes me feel weak.

OK, so that was more about the character building than the combat, but that's the thing, the small number of things you can do with your character really makes the combat feel shallow. Build to 5 resources, hit your two finishers, and maybe some condition management on your targets, which for the most part just gives you a bit of bonus damage. Maybe you have room on the bar for a short duration, long cooldown group buff. And that's it - it makes fight difficulty a really, really static thing. Either you can beat something, or you can't, for the most part. Beating a tough encounter, instead of becoming a test of executing well (other than the moving out of fire that pretty much every game has) becomes a test of rejiggering your powers until you find a combination that can beat the monster. I feel like TSW is tactically very uninteresting on an individual level, while probably being super interesting from like, a group composition planning standpoint, but that's not a tradeoff that is going to have a lot of mass appeal.

Compare that to the suite of tools I have available on, say, my protection warrior in WoW or my Jedi Guardian in SWTOR and it isn't anywhere near the same level of complexity/mastery to perform well. About the only thing I feel like I gained as a combat 'plus' in TSW is the ability to move while I'm doing stuff with a casting time. That's certainly nice and the constant 'move out of circle' stuff would really be a headache without it, but it isn't really enough to make up for how all the other stuff feels to me.

But what about GW1, you ask! You only get 8 powers there! The answer is, I can put 7 other henchment/heroes of my choice with full loadouts (if I go for all heroes) in my group in GW1, I can order them around, etc. Not even comparable, basically. Maybe it has similar problems when you're not solo or in a small group, I never did full 8 person group stuff there.

And honestly all that said if it were F2P I would totally still drop in from time to time, that looks like a wall of bitching but on balance I still think I feel positively towards the game.

======

Surly, anyone who plays ARMA can't play the "if I can figure this out anyone can!" card.  :-P


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rasix on August 12, 2012, 11:02:23 PM
The problem I'm having with new MMOs (and to some degree in WoW at times) is that there are just too many buttons.  I'm liking the approach some games are making to get some of this crap off my screen.

edit:
Embarrassing factoid: I didn't know you could move while casting until Egypt. Gogo hammer/shotgun build.  All instants.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 12, 2012, 11:08:28 PM
SWTOR absolutely does throw too many buttons at you on some classes (unless you're Eldaec, then you think it is about half too few); I've bitched about this on a number of occasions. LOTRO has the same problem (worse than SWTOR by a large margin, actually, at least on my champion), WoW gets up there on some classes as well. I think the sweet spot for me is probably around 20. Enough to fill 2 10 button ability bars, and then maybe I've got one more bar for items and long term buffs and travel thingies. I think City of Heroes really nails this, by the way, the character building is very flexible but still allows you to carry enough utility to not feel shitty when you're solo.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Llyse on August 12, 2012, 11:19:18 PM
It makes sense to look at it from the point of view of the mainstream. What doesn't make sense is when they start writing things like "the combat is terrible", implying, presumably, that WoW combat is the benchmark, and is better. How the fuck does that work? At the very worst the combat is samesame. With a bit of a deeper look into it, TSW combat is miles ahead.

Pretty much this...

Fark lazy game reviewer wannabe journalists.

Admittedly I hadn't played an MMO since Cataclysm but look, feel of TSW was different enough from wow that it was interesting but the Action bar and combat was similar enough to WoW that it didn't really require a tutorial. Sure you could slightly gimp yourself picking random skills but I haven't repeated any quests, switched weapons at the start because I picked shotgun instead of pistols by accident and still turned out ok (Still in Kingsmouth).

The human animations can be stilted sometimes but I like that my character is mute and I have to fill in the blanks as a response. It's a clever way to cut down voice acting costs and involve the player more.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Zetor on August 12, 2012, 11:36:17 PM
Combat isn't really the strong point of TSW (neither was it for GW1 until their second expansion Nightfall, btw.. though the deck system worked well for pvp at least). And for all the talk about the deck system, I built one deck based on a cookie-cutter crit and strike-based ele/shotgun build (got all the abilities for it halfway Egypt, just used low-cost substitutes beforehand), and it lasted me until the end of Transylvania... I had to make up an alternate build exactly once (when one of your weapons is temporarily disabled for a mission) and switch in a cripple ability when fighting tough mobs that were vulnerable to cripple (one mission in the shadowy forest). I was doing basically the same rotation for the entire game!

I don't really care much about the number of buttons as long as it's fun. GW2 does it just about right with the 5*2+1+3+1+4 abilities that typically do more than one thing each, though as an elementalist that number changes to 5*4+1+3+1+4, which was just fine for me. LOTRO has a wide spectrum from the class you could play with 4 buttons in certain combinations like a fighting game (warden) to the bloated damage/pets/cc/debuff/situational ability monstrosity that is a loremaster (where you'll be hard-pressed to put all abilities in 5 hotbars... hotkeying them all was a minigame in itself).


edited to actually address the topic: That said, the game overall was very enjoyable for me. Calling it out on story/voiceacting/graphics is just... wat? I certainly don't see why the game's worse in any of those areas compared to SWTOR, which didn't get 70-ish ratings from the same people, I'm pretty sure.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Megrim on August 13, 2012, 12:06:18 AM
Personally I loved LotRO combat. But it's probably bias from playing a Loremaster and Captain. Loremaster especially, feeling like some kind of orchestra conductor and trying to keep the entire group operating at peak ferocity. So. Many. Buttons.

And this is really what I don't get. I played a Druid in WoW until like, 74 or something? Used about four maybe five abilities with any consistency while levelling. Same old rotation. In raids as an oomkin it was, ugh, six or seven? Maybe? It's the same thing as playing TSW. Hit rotation, go through, hit rotation, go through. The depth offered, however, by being able to combine abilities freely is liberating, even if functionally the result is largely the same.

Hence I said, at worst the combat is on par with WoW. And it only improves on it, as you unlock more abilities.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Dark_MadMax on August 13, 2012, 12:09:25 AM
It makes sense to look at it from the point of view of the mainstream. What doesn't make sense is when they start writing things like "the combat is terrible", implying, presumably, that WoW combat is the benchmark, and is better. How the fuck does that work? At the very worst the combat is samesame. With a bit of a deeper look into it, TSW combat is miles ahead.

Ok to be honest here. WoW combat IS the benchmark. As it is pretty  damn good as far as MMOs go. Having said that I do think TSW combat is not bad and active dodge is nice touch. In any case TSW is not about combat, that reviewer flattened its best points (dialogue, atmosphere, quests) which is outright flat lies because no MMO to date is better than TSW in those areas.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rendakor on August 13, 2012, 12:13:19 AM
Lots of stuff about skills
This pretty much nails it for me. Trying to build a tank was incredibly difficult because I couldn't find a build that could hold AOE and Single-Target threat well; my options then were respec between trash and boss pulls (which would have been easier if the spec-swapping interface worked well) or just let the DPS tank the trash mobs and hope for the best. That's not even getting into the issue of how many to slot of attacks vs defensive CDs...

I generally agree with eldaec that there's no such thing as too many buttons, and ran into the same problem in D3 that I'm feeling here in TSW.

Edit instead of double posting:
And this is really what I don't get. I played a Druid in WoW until like, 74 or something? Used about four maybe five abilities with any consistency while levelling. Same old rotation. In raids as an oomkin it was, ugh, six or seven? Maybe? It's the same thing as playing TSW. Hit rotation, go through, hit rotation, go through. The depth offered, however, by being able to combine abilities freely is liberating, even if functionally the result is largely the same.

Hence I said, at worst the combat is on par with WoW. And it only improves on it, as you unlock more abilities.
Um, what? Just doing a quick count, I have ~20 combat abilities on both my DK tank and my Assassination Rogue that I use on a regular basis while raiding in WoW.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Megrim on August 13, 2012, 12:33:44 AM
Lots of stuff about skills
This pretty much nails it for me. Trying to build a tank was incredibly difficult because I couldn't find a build that could hold AOE and Single-Target threat well; my options then were respec between trash and boss pulls (which would have been easier if the spec-swapping interface worked well) or just let the DPS tank the trash mobs and hope for the best. That's not even getting into the issue of how many to slot of attacks vs defensive CDs...

I generally agree with eldaec that there's no such thing as too many buttons, and ran into the same problem in D3 that I'm feeling here in TSW.

Edit instead of double posting:
And this is really what I don't get. I played a Druid in WoW until like, 74 or something? Used about four maybe five abilities with any consistency while levelling. Same old rotation. In raids as an oomkin it was, ugh, six or seven? Maybe? It's the same thing as playing TSW. Hit rotation, go through, hit rotation, go through. The depth offered, however, by being able to combine abilities freely is liberating, even if functionally the result is largely the same.

Hence I said, at worst the combat is on par with WoW. And it only improves on it, as you unlock more abilities.
Um, what? Just doing a quick count, I have ~20 combat abilities on both my DK tank and my Assassination Rogue that I use on a regular basis while raiding in WoW.

Having 20 abilities is not the same as using 20 abilities. What, you use all 20 when levelling?

 * Edit, sorry I misread, missing the 'regular basis'. You must play at a higher level of WoW to what I did, because regularly using 20 combat abilities while raiding was certainly not my experience.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: proudft on August 13, 2012, 01:06:16 AM
Bear druids just had fewer buttons.  I might have even had a space on my hotbar on that tank, egads!


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ghambit on August 13, 2012, 01:42:00 AM
I've always looked at the "buttons" in TSW to be hidden within the skills themselves (even the passives).  Most other MMOs have lots of buttons because each button does precisely one fuckin thing and that's it.  In TSW, you may push a button and set off a combat chain that does 5 different things situationally.  There's no need to push a passive button, because it pushes itself when a condition is met... and so forth.   I mean, one skill in TSW will have outcomes based on typically 3 different factors... which in turn effect what you use down the road situationally.  These are all metaphoric buttons in a sense. 

Also, in funcoms collision-based engines they do away with a lot of the usual defensive "buttons" needed because players are already given them via movement, active dodge, LoS, etc.  So right there also you're eliminating an entire bar of skills in a lot of other RPGs.

Experimentation is also a lot more prevalent in TSW then in most other MMO.  "Trying" things is one of the best parts of the game, but if you're not a gamer that likes to fool around with a system well... then just google a build and copy the routine.  /shrug   In your WoW-wish games there really is no "trying."  There is just push this button or don't and I may be good at something or I may not due to gear or tree selection.

In the end I really can't find any faults with this system at all cept that it might not be for everyone.   Then again, I absolutely loved AoC's combat system too (playing as a Conq) and a lot of people didnt (they were usually non-positional dps casters).




Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Zetor on August 13, 2012, 02:08:04 AM
I just checked how many abilities my WOW chars use (three 85s and a 83), it's actually a lot more than I thought... my lock actually has just as many buttons as my LOTRO loremaster  :ye_gods:

- demo lock (83): 40 keybinds, 10 non-keybound abilities; I use about 15 regularly during an average dungeon run, and the others are typically long cooldown utilities / etc
- surv hunter (85): 33 keybinds, 5 non-keybound abilities; I use about 10 of these regularly in dungeon runs, the others are CC and really situational abilities (hey I totally used wyvern sting the other day!)
- blood DK (85): 34 keybinds, no non-keybound abilities; I use about 17 regularly in dungeon runs, most of the others are various ohcrap buttons
- resto shaman (85): 36 keybinds, 10 non-keybound abilities; I use about 14 regularly in dungeon runs, the others are individual totems/CCs/consumables/etc

Anyway, I think what Ingmar was getting at (and what I do agree with, mostly) is that TSW seems to skimp on the rarely-used/situational abilities. Like my DK has the usual buttons I push for tanking, but I also have about 5 different survivability buttons, a combat rez, some burst damage abilities, some minor CC, etc etc. and my lock has a lot of pet control buttons and wacky stuff like teleports and the demon shapeshift [which comes with its own buttons]. On my LOTRO characters it's even more pronounced - if there's something to be done in a fight, my loremaster probably has a button for it somewhere. Now I can certainly see that those buttons would just be annoying clutter most of the time, but it's definitely different from GW1/TSW/GW2 (GW2 has a lot more buttons though).


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rendakor on August 13, 2012, 03:25:08 AM
Having 20 abilities is not the same as using 20 abilities. What, you use all 20 when levelling?

 * Edit, sorry I misread, missing the 'regular basis'. You must play at a higher level of WoW to what I did, because regularly using 20 combat abilities while raiding was certainly not my experience.
My DK was the main tank of a progression raiding guild when I was playing (quit right after 4.3); I included not just my rotational abilities but my defensive cooldowns and the utility skills (battle rez, taunt, etc) I used in most fights. It's those abilities that are lacking most in TSW, but even the rotations are incredibly simplistic: spam builder, hit finishers, repeat. Every class in the game plays like the most simplistic version of a WoW Rogue.

If you're a DPS character at least you're likely to have 7 'attack' skills that you can hit to create an interesting rotation. As a tank I usually ran 4 "attacks" (builder, 1 single target finisher for each weapon plus an aoe finisher), a taunt, and 2 defensives, giving me 3 buttons to spam based on the situation (1111123 or 1111124) and 3 to use situationally. Gaining levels and unlocking new skills didn't change the rotation, it just changed what random side effects the buttons had; this made customizing your skill deck very interesting, but playing it, not so much.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: palmer_eldritch on August 13, 2012, 03:44:48 AM
Doing the nightmare dungeons in TSW last night, I was changing my build on the fly before most of the fights, swopping both active and passive abilities. If it didn't work, I'd make a change or two before we pulled again. You can't use the same cookie cutter build all the time and need to think about the enemy you are facing, what they do and the skills you might need to counter them.

You may not need to do this while doing your basic levelling but that's not the equivalent of raiding.

Edit: I should also say that trying to tank the high end dungeons involves a lot more than rotating any set of abilities. There's a hell of a lot of running around, moving the mob around, timing certain abilities to counteract the mob's abilities and trying to avoid a lot of environmental effects. It's certainly interesting.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: DraconianOne on August 13, 2012, 08:15:19 AM
That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular). You don't see some of the more interesting aspects of the skill system until late in that zone. And if you don't do the dungeons, you really aren't seeing a lot of the differences between it and WoW-like MMO's that make the game special.

I'm not sure hiding away the good, fun or interesting bits from people until they're several hours in the game is the best way of selling it to people like me who are on the fence, especially given what they're asking for in a terms of monthly sub fee. I played for several hours before logging out in disappointment and disgust (mostly at the fuck-awful storytelling and custscene dialogue). Which is a shame because I love the setting and what they're trying to do with the classless skill system design.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: trias_e on August 13, 2012, 10:31:49 AM
That reviewer didn't get past Kingsmouth, I bet. Some of the early voice acting in Kingsmouth bothered me (the sheriff in particular). You don't see some of the more interesting aspects of the skill system until late in that zone. And if you don't do the dungeons, you really aren't seeing a lot of the differences between it and WoW-like MMO's that make the game special.

I'm not sure hiding away the good, fun or interesting bits from people until they're several hours in the game is the best way of selling it to people like me who are on the fence, especially given what they're asking for in a terms of monthly sub fee. I played for several hours before logging out in disappointment and disgust (mostly at the fuck-awful storytelling and custscene dialogue). Which is a shame because I love the setting and what they're trying to do with the classless skill system design.

Fuck-awful storytelling and cutscene dialogue?   I mean, really?  I bought the game primarily due to the storytelling and cutscene dialogue in the first 4 hours (yes, I even think the sheriff is awesome).  I can see not getting into it, but I'm kind of amazed that someone could come to the conclusion that they are fuck-awful. 


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 13, 2012, 10:54:21 AM
TSW gets the number of buttons almost perfect for me.  I don't want to have to worry about more than 6-7 actives.  I do like how many passives there are.

I wouldn't mind a system that had another row which could be either active or passive to suit both preferences.  Even if the actives give a bigger boost, I'd be happy with that trade-off.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: HaemishM on August 13, 2012, 10:58:51 AM
I haven't played, but it sounds like TSW doesn't have a fun/understandable newbie experience.  We've seen that a lot in MMO's.  Do they have a tutorial?  You throw a player in a non-diku MMO without some hand-holding you will get frustration.

The TSW newbie experience is HORRIBLE, hands down. The setting is the only thing that initially kept me playing in beta. I wanted to like it, so I kept at it. But the amount of things that the game just doesn't tell you, doesn't document well at all is just staggering. The very fact that your talisman skills are more important than your weapon skills is so different from what any experienced MMO player would expect is a very big barrier to the new player. I can certainly understand how MMO vets would give up on the game an hour in, especially if they weren't personally invested in the setting. In that sense, I can absolutely understand why "professional" game reviewers gave it a bad score. But as we all know, professional reviewers are mostly complete fucking retards.

Basing payments to a studio on the collective opinions of fucktards you could buy for a free T-Shirt and a beta key is MADNESS. These guys don't pay for games, and will say anything you want them to just to keep from losing exclusive access to betas and previews. The only people this helps is, of course, the publishers, which is like just about everything else wrong with the games industry. Good business people do not base their paychecks and the survival of their business on the collective fapping of nerds, but the games industry is full of terrible business people who only learned a spreadsheet program because they wanted to make games for a living.

EDIT: I also note that on that shitty G4TV review, while he gave it 2.5/5, the user ratings were 4.4/5.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: DraconianOne on August 13, 2012, 11:39:58 AM
Fuck-awful storytelling and cutscene dialogue?   I mean, really?  I bought the game primarily due to the storytelling and cutscene dialogue in the first 4 hours (yes, I even think the sheriff is awesome).  I can see not getting into it, but I'm kind of amazed that someone could come to the conclusion that they are fuck-awful. 

I'm kind of amazed that someone could think that they're not.

Like Sjofn, it drives me crazy that my character had zero agency in the conversations except I'm far less forgiving of the fact that I am subjected to having these sodding NPCs talk at me for two minutes without any come back on my characters part. That's not a conversation, that's a goddamn soliloquy and Deputy Andy reminiscing about his bastard kittens is not fucking Shakespeare.

(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_L8fBQo6XW8s/TBqovjBF20I/AAAAAAAAAJw/lX0ei5yRfL0/s1600/Skip+to+the+end.jpg)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 01:12:08 PM
Where it really gets me is when the character(s) go on about stuff for a few minutes, and you then go off to do stuff that seemingly has nothing to do with what you just heard. Red's Bait Shop, I'm looking at you. Somehow a conversation about a chess game turns into kill 10 draugr. Uh, ok.

EDIT: I'm still unable to log on to their website with my account to cancel. It works fine to log in to the game. I tried a password reset request, got a message that they sent me a reset, received nothing. I guess that is one way to keep revenues up.  :oh_i_see: Going to have to call into Norwegian tech support I guess.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Wasted on August 13, 2012, 01:32:01 PM
Fuck-awful storytelling and cutscene dialogue?   I mean, really?  I bought the game primarily due to the storytelling and cutscene dialogue in the first 4 hours (yes, I even think the sheriff is awesome).  I can see not getting into it, but I'm kind of amazed that someone could come to the conclusion that they are fuck-awful. 

I'm kind of amazed that someone could think that they're not.

Like Sjofn, it drives me crazy that my character had zero agency in the conversations except I'm far less forgiving of the fact that I am subjected to having these sodding NPCs talk at me for two minutes without any come back on my characters part. That's not a conversation, that's a goddamn soliloquy and Deputy Andy reminiscing about his bastard kittens is not fucking Shakespeare.

Given your stated prejudices I doubt you would even recognise a Shakespearean quality soliloquy if the game presented one.  The writing is spot on.  Your example of Andy especially, worrying about current events whilst still dwelling on the trauma's of his past, showing this town has a lot of dark history all throughout.  Not just big tragedy's but also a collection of more personal evils, like a father that can coldly kill a litter of kittens.  Its pitch perfect, it conveys all the extra meaning it needs to build setting.  You don't like not interacting, that's fine, but to not be able to recognise the quality of what you are getting is a certain type of tunnel vision I can't comprehend.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rendakor on August 13, 2012, 01:36:38 PM
I'll echo the comments about lack of agency; my ideal situation is something like Fallout/Skyrim: a silent protagonist but with dialog options. I found the writing in TSW pretty good though.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Miasma on August 13, 2012, 01:46:59 PM
Where it really gets me is when the character(s) go on about stuff for a few minutes, and you then go off to do stuff that seemingly has nothing to do with what you just heard. Red's Bait Shop, I'm looking at you. Somehow a conversation about a chess game turns into kill 10 draugr. Uh, ok.
You can't be serious.  He talks about being on the defensive, stalling and waiting for a wildcard to show up and change the whole board.  I'm not putting this in a spoiler because it should be obvious: you're the wildcard changing the board.  You go out and butcher the invading draug army.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 01:58:39 PM
Where it really gets me is when the character(s) go on about stuff for a few minutes, and you then go off to do stuff that seemingly has nothing to do with what you just heard. Red's Bait Shop, I'm looking at you. Somehow a conversation about a chess game turns into kill 10 draugr. Uh, ok.
You can't be serious.  He talks about being on the defensive, stalling and waiting for a wildcard to show up and change the whole board.  I'm not putting this in a spoiler because it should be obvious: you're the wildcard changing the board.  You go out and butcher the invading draug army.

I don't like the abstraction of it, first of all. I come in, nobody reacts to my presence at all, I spy on a conversation with a generic chess metaphor, and it turns into a precise series of kill 10 rats exercises. I also don't like the fact that nearly every single person you talk to until you get to the Wabbajack reservation is not reacting in any kind of realistic way to the zombie/sea monster invasion, this is just the point at which I really went  :oh_i_see:.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Miasma on August 13, 2012, 02:15:33 PM
This is one of the few MMOs in which your character actually uses his own initiative.  He doesn't need to be told to kill that group of monsters slowly approaching, he assesses the situation and takes it upon himself to act.  It would have been more contrived if it were most any other game and one of the people had to give you a quest and actually tell you what you should be doing in that situation.

The quest isn't as simple as kill 10 rats either.  You kill some draug to get a nice collection of their corpses.  Then you burn their corpses in a big bonfire to attract more attention.  You kill the stronger draug that you lured out with your corpse bonfire and then stick their heads on pikes to lure out their boss.  Which I shouldn't have to explain is another direct tie into the chess metaphor.  You kill pawns, then some knights, then the queen and finally the king.

Game has the most brilliant quests in any MMO ever released.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 02:22:31 PM
It *really* doesn't feel like I am using my own initiative to me. My character barely participates in the world. That's a huge problem, and it gets even worse for me when other characters act as if I'm not even present.

Brilliant is definitely not a word that works for me on a lot of these quests. Some of them are legitimately good - anything involving a haunted house so far, a lot of the investigations. But it isn't anything like all, or most, and I think my character's lack of impact in these scenes is a huge part of what makes them not work.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: palmer_eldritch on August 13, 2012, 02:29:36 PM
Where it really gets me is when the character(s) go on about stuff for a few minutes, and you then go off to do stuff that seemingly has nothing to do with what you just heard. Red's Bait Shop, I'm looking at you. Somehow a conversation about a chess game turns into kill 10 draugr. Uh, ok.
You can't be serious.  He talks about being on the defensive, stalling and waiting for a wildcard to show up and change the whole board.  I'm not putting this in a spoiler because it should be obvious: you're the wildcard changing the board.  You go out and butcher the invading draug army.

I don't like the abstraction of it, first of all. I come in, nobody reacts to my presence at all, I spy on a conversation with a generic chess metaphor, and it turns into a precise series of kill 10 rats exercises. I also don't like the fact that nearly every single person you talk to until you get to the Wabbajack reservation is not reacting in any kind of realistic way to the zombie/sea monster invasion, this is just the point at which I really went  :oh_i_see:.

What Miasma is saying is that he does react to your presence.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 02:36:20 PM
Yes, I understand that's what they're going for, but it doesn't work. The guy who runs the bait shop is so insightful that when he sees me walk in he knows he can get me to do what needs doing by ignoring me and lecturing his niece about chess. It doesn't work for me at all. They're trying to create a bunch of Twin Peaks type characters but they forgot to put in any of the normal ones that offset them. And my character is definitely no Agent Cooper. At times I wonder how they know he's not just another zombie.

Those two dudes at the trailer park who react to the zombie apocalypse by getting wasted? Those are the first two where I thought "now that makes sense."

I should stop talking about this game, its making me think I had less fun than I did.  :-P


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rasix on August 13, 2012, 02:40:43 PM
This is getting rather stupid.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: satael on August 13, 2012, 02:42:56 PM
My TSW beta was enjoying the start and then getting to Kingsmouth and having to compete with a dozen other players to get my 5 zombie kills which pretty much killed my interest in the game (since I had other stuff to play at the time)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Wasted on August 13, 2012, 02:47:48 PM
Yes, I understand that's what they're going for, but it doesn't work. The guy who runs the bait shop is so insightful that when he sees me walk in he knows he can get me to do what needs doing by ignoring me and lecturing his niece about chess. It doesn't work for me at all. They're trying to create a bunch of Twin Peaks type characters but they forgot to put in any of the normal ones that offset them. And my character is definitely no Agent Cooper. At times I wonder how they know he's not just another zombie.

Those two dudes at the trailer park who react to the zombie apocalypse by getting wasted? Those are the first two where I thought "now that makes sense."


I don't see this.  Your first enter Kingsmouth and are led to the fortified Sheriff's office with active defence, and the other people are holed up in a magically protected church or making a last stand at their house with a zombie bonfire and a bucket of shotgun shells.  Even the airport is rigged with traps and the scrapyard has defenses for waves of creatures.  There is a whole load of what I would consider 'rational' reactions to the invasion before you get to some of the more esoteric characters.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Surlyboi on August 13, 2012, 02:52:49 PM
Surly, anyone who plays ARMA can't play the "if I can figure this out anyone can!" card.  :-P

I die a lot in that game.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: calapine on August 13, 2012, 02:53:13 PM
Please stop arguing, you are making calapine cry!

This is my parents all over again.  :heartbreak: :heartbreak:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Megrim on August 13, 2012, 04:02:31 PM
Doing the nightmare dungeons in TSW last night, I was changing my build on the fly before most of the fights, swopping both active and passive abilities. If it didn't work, I'd make a change or two before we pulled again. You can't use the same cookie cutter build all the time and need to think about the enemy you are facing, what they do and the skills you might need to counter them.

You may not need to do this while doing your basic levelling but that's not the equivalent of raiding.

Edit: I should also say that trying to tank the high end dungeons involves a lot more than rotating any set of abilities. There's a hell of a lot of running around, moving the mob around, timing certain abilities to counteract the mob's abilities and trying to avoid a lot of environmental effects. It's certainly interesting.

Way to say what I was trying to say, but better. Jerk.

Please stop arguing, you are making calapine cry!

This is my parents all over again.  :heartbreak: :heartbreak:

You're adopted.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 13, 2012, 04:10:00 PM
I don't see this.  Your first enter Kingsmouth and are led to the fortified Sheriff's office with active defence, and the other people are holed up in a magically protected church or making a last stand at their house with a zombie bonfire and a bucket of shotgun shells.  Even the airport is rigged with traps and the scrapyard has defenses for waves of creatures.  There is a whole load of what I would consider 'rational' reactions to the invasion before you get to some of the more esoteric characters.

Yes, except the actual people are like "whelp, zombies." That's the wtf part. No one before those two drunks, when they are actually speaking, seem the least bit concerned. Just sort of ... I don't even know. Bemused? The visual cues do not match the characters at all. It doesn't work for me either. I've given it a lot of leeway on this point, but c'mon.

And I don't feel like my character works on her own initiative either. She is blown from quest to quest, doing shit because She Must or else log out, without even giving me the window dressing of participating in a conversation (or having the original quest giver go "hey, thanks, that's exactly what we needed to be done."). Policeman wrings his hands about kittens (and I did like his monologue, mind you, just NOT AS QUEST TEXT). Native American dude rambles about chess. Writer dude berates me about I don't even remember because by that point my patience for the cutscenes was running out. Then I get a quest that may or may not have something to do with what they just babbled about at me (or near me). Not because my character goes "ohhhhh." Maybe my character's reaction to the chess thing was "uh, whatever dude," and she moves on because if they have time for clumsy chess metaphors, they obviously have the whole Horrible Zombies From the Sea issue under control. But of course she doesn't, she goes off to kill ten zombierats because She Must (I didn't realize adding a clicky bit to a Kill Ten Rats quest suddenly made it an awesome quest, though, good to know).

This is probably the last I'll hammer on this point, because I am not going to keep playing it (and it's a major factor in that decision), and it doesn't really need to be repeated.  :heart:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rasix on August 13, 2012, 04:28:41 PM
Just an observation, but it just seems like it didn't work for you two from the start. It's been like reverse-Rokal anytime you were in chat.  A general negative vibe that permeated every attempt to play.  You seemed to really want to dislike it.

And you did! Fancy how that worked out.

Refuting any of what you've said, as has been shown, is pretty pointless.  So, I won't.  You're somewhat objectively wrong on some of the points, but again, pointless.  


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 04:31:41 PM
Sorry if that was the case, I was trying to keep the QQing to the forum. Failed I guess. (I can definitely remember failing on the Buggy Day of Bugginess, lost my patience there.)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 13, 2012, 04:38:00 PM
Just an observation, but it just seems like it didn't work for you two from the start. It's been like reverse-Rokal anytime you were in chat.  A general negative vibe that permeated every attempt to play.  You seemed to really want to dislike it.

And you did! Fancy how that worked out.

Refuting any of what you've said, as has been shown, is pretty pointless.  So, I won't.  You're somewhat objectively wrong on some of the points, but again, pointless.  

I barely spoke in chat, but sorry if that was the impression given, as I was actually the opposite. I wanted to like it, but I didn't. I made myself log in for longer than I otherwise would've because I wanted to like it and thought maybe I wasn't giving it enough of a chance. But. Whelp. I even tried to make sure if I posted something in "things I don't like," I went and posted something in "things I do like."

Also people need to stop using the word "objectively" It's clearly lost all meaning.  :heart:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 04:39:06 PM
It was probably me, Rasix and I were often alone together in guild chat during the Chatless Time.  :-P


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Maledict on August 13, 2012, 04:39:43 PM
I honestly cannot comprehend anyone finding TORs questing and writing superior to TSW, but I guess I'm obviously a minority there.

Regardless, as Rasix has said you guys really have been coming across as having a downer on this game from the word go. Please don't be so mean to GW2 as well!


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 04:41:40 PM
Actually I'm pretty sure you're not a minority at least among f13 posters. I promise I won't say bad things about GW2 until I play it at least.  :grin:

EDIT: And honestly it is kind of how forum conversations just automatically seem to go. Everyone gets pushed into seeming like they like or hate something more than they actually do, because you end up trying to defend your opinion about the one thing with people disagreeing with you, etc. And I know I do the same thing to people when I'm on the other side. Like the way this started - I was agreeing with Haemish that the reviewer must have stopped at Kingsmouth, because he missed the awesome stuff later on the island, which of course turned into me having to defend my opinion about the bad parts instead of talking about what was good about the good parts, etc. So let it be known: the quests, characters, and monologuing at Innsmouth Academy are great. The end, nothing bad to say!

There really *are* a lot of good things about the game and I'd have no trouble recommending it to someone for whom those things are the most important. And I did want to like the game; I went in expecting some Funcom crappiness, yes, but it actually wasn't the things I thought I wouldn't like, that I ended up not liking. It was more an avalanche of little things that added together.

I've probably just played too many MMOs at this point to appreciate one for what it is without comparing each system to how 10 other games have done it better or worse. Am I turning into Nebu?  :heart:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 13, 2012, 04:43:44 PM
Please don't be so mean to GW2 as well!

Not planning on playing that one any time soon, so don't worry.  :why_so_serious:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 13, 2012, 05:27:33 PM
I'm still surprised each time I log in with how much I like of the game. May or not stick with it. Depends how crazy life gets, which is unpredictable atm.

Haven't followed GW2 much. Don't know if it's omgslicedbread or merely better-than-GW1 (which did nothing for me). But that's for a different thread :-)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rasix on August 13, 2012, 05:27:42 PM
Actually I'm pretty sure you're not a minority at least among f13 posters.

SWTOR dialogue for me is just different.  Not necessarily better or worse, but you do tend to get into some "ohh shit, that's not how I imagine that'd play out" or general derpiness in the delivery or tone.  There's just a lot more of it, so it's easier to spot some parts that don't measure up. If it's bad with TSW, it's just kind of consistently bad (like John Wolf).  I suppose Corso falls under that category as well. 

Quote
I've probably just played too many MMOs at this point to appreciate one for what it is without comparing each system to how 10 other games have done it better or worse. Am I turning into Nebu?  :heart:

You didn't max out 3 characters, all while hating it, so I think you're in the clear.  Although if they don't let you cancel, you just might.

And now for something completely different:
Quote
Also people need to stop using the word "objectively" It's clearly lost all meaning.

If my knowledge of how a system works demonstrates you didn't comprehend something at all, is that objective or subjective?   :why_so_serious:  


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 13, 2012, 05:33:02 PM
Given my "monologue" rant was entirely about something subjective, I honestly don't know.  :oh_i_see:


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Nevermore on August 13, 2012, 05:41:11 PM
I honestly cannot comprehend anyone finding TORs questing and writing superior to TSW, but I guess I'm obviously a minority there.

I think the questing and writing is better in TOR, but that doesn't mean I think it's bad in TSW.  I actually went into the free weekend completely expecting to hate the game, and when I ran into that one stupid bug right away I figured: Ho ho ho, I was right!  But once I got over that part I actually found the game to be surprisingly engaging.  So I actually went from expecting to hate it to wavering on actually buying it, though if I do buy it at some point I doubt it would be for more than a month since I don't think it really has staying power.  But even then who's to say, since I was already wrong about it once.

All that said, the two things that really hold me back the most are the mute protagonist/overall lack of agency and the infuriating chat channel bugs.  Only a developer like Funcom can be so brilliant on the one hand (play with any of your friends regardless of server!) and so incompetent on the other (oh, did you want that channel?  Not for you!) at the same time.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ginaz on August 13, 2012, 07:13:23 PM
Quick question to those that felt the story, quests and cut scenes were lacking: would you have felt the same way if you never played TOR?  Would the whole "mute protagonist" have bothered you as much?


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Abelian75 on August 13, 2012, 07:14:55 PM
I honestly cannot comprehend anyone finding TORs questing and writing superior to TSW, but I guess I'm obviously a minority there.

Regardless, as Rasix has said you guys really have been coming across as having a downer on this game from the word go. Please don't be so mean to GW2 as well!

I can imagine someone preferring SWTOR (especially given the dialogue vs. monologue/silent PC thing), but I personally greatly prefer TSW.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 13, 2012, 07:17:29 PM
Quick question to those that felt the story, quests and cut scenes were lacking: would you have felt the same way if you never played TOR?  Would the whole "mute protagonist" have bothered you as much?

Probably not as much, no. I can't say for sure. I mean, I notice it in Skyrim too (compared to a Mass Effect or Dragon Age) but it doesn't bother me there nearly as much, perhaps because the gameplay is different by a wider amount and because I'm still making actual choices for myself.

EDIT: I can definitely say the poor duoing support wouldn't have bothered me as much, because until SWTOR I was used to duoing being completely shitty in basically every MMO since City of Heroes.

EDIT 2: Another way to put it, perhaps. SWTOR is the only MMO, so far, that makes me feel like the story is actually about my character. I don't think I realized how important that would be to me until it happened. So yeah I think I can definitely say it wouldn't have been nearly as striking an issue for me without playing SWTOR first.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: tmp on August 13, 2012, 07:20:25 PM
I honestly cannot comprehend anyone finding TORs questing and writing superior to TSW, but I guess I'm obviously a minority there.
I'd say TOR writing benefits from recognizing better when it's a good time for the gums to stop flapping, on average. Brevity being the soul of wit, etc. The style is also less baroque and for some that can be a plus (granted, can be just as well an opposite for others)

or to put it differently, TOR writing is more like a movie dialogue, which may suit better a game so focused on 'cinematic experience'. TSW is more like literal adaptation of a book in that regard.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 13, 2012, 07:47:14 PM
Quick question to those that felt the story, quests and cut scenes were lacking: would you have felt the same way if you never played TOR?  Would the whole "mute protagonist" have bothered you as much?

Pretty sure I said it elsewhere (but possibly on a different forum), that had this come out between Cataclysm and SWTOR, I would've been a lot more excited about it, because it's still a giant step forward from WoW's quest-delivery system (and, of course, blows the actual world lore parts out of the water). So it probably wouldn't have bothered me as much, but I can't say for sure. I'm OK with being a mute protagonist, but s/he has to have SOME input into what's going on, and TSW doesn't really deliver on that front (for me). Like Chell is mute in the Portal games, but I still feel like she's driving stuff forward, so it doesn't bug me. My characters in CoX never said anything (that I can recall) but I was obviously driving stuff forward (and eventually they even got to make decisions that mattered). I started to lose interest in WoW when I stopped feeling like my character was driving stuff forward and instead was part of Thrall's cheerleading squad.

I'm sure I'm supposed to feel like stuff is happening to my character that are beyond her control in TSW some of the time, as it is Cthulhu-y and horrible things beyond your control or understanding are supposed to happen. But I don't even get any sort of character growth as a result of it, which makes it fall flat for me.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rendakor on August 13, 2012, 08:04:14 PM
Quick question to those that felt the story, quests and cut scenes were lacking: would you have felt the same way if you never played TOR?  Would the whole "mute protagonist" have bothered you as much?
I don't like cut scenes in my games; the talking parts in SWTOR were fine because not only was I paying attention, but I had choices to make and things to say. My character being voiced has no bearing on it, I just don't like sitting still and listening to something (particularly because some of these monologs go on for minutes at a time and only hint at the quest objective like the aforementioned chess example) so even if TSW had a voiced (but no dialog options) protagonist I'd still be inclined to skip scenes when I'm feeling impatient.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Nevermore on August 13, 2012, 08:48:30 PM
Yeah, I think it's less about the PC not being voiced (though I'd prefer a voice if given a choice) and more about having no input whatsoever.  In GW2 your protagonist is voiced for the story elements but it's done really poorly and in such a way that it always seems to go against how I envisioned my character.  I actually disliked how they handled it in GW2 much more than TSW despite my character having the personality of a cardboard cutout in the latter.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 13, 2012, 09:14:06 PM
Yeah, I think it's less about the PC not being voiced (though I'd prefer a voice if given a choice) and more about having no input whatsoever.  
This for me too. I didn't mind being mute in DA:O, and there it was more pronounced because you did have dialog response choices. TSW goes one step further too by having some characters make a joke of it (like the reporter in the hotel in SC: "you must be a real hoot at parties" /paraphrase). But in the end, lots of cutscenes with no choices is just storytelling exposition.

It doesn't bother me in TSW because the stories are interesting enough and the voice acting isn't bad to me. But I'm not a real connoisseur :-) I do wish you could skip them though on second playthrough. I won't be maxing out one character much less playing two though.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rendakor on August 13, 2012, 09:19:15 PM
You can certainly skip them; I believe it's Esc but it might be Spacebar (unless you were looking for an option to auto-skip, in which case I got nothing).


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Sjofn on August 13, 2012, 09:20:07 PM
Pretty sure you can escape out of the cutscenes to skip them and still get the quest, Darniaq, so if you ever wind up having a change of heart, you have that option! It was that or spacebar, I know I did it some when I was repeating some quests I'd done on my Templar character. And felt vaguely guilty about it, but I ... I really hate that accent. And they do it so well.  :ye_gods:


fake edit: doh, beaten. Well, whatever, I still got to slam another region's accent. Suck it, New England!


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Venkman on August 14, 2012, 10:21:07 PM
Yea it's an all or nothing thing though. I'd rather be able to skip individual sentences or something. Minor peeve :-)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Zetor on August 14, 2012, 11:41:17 PM
Yea, I agree with the individual skip thing.

To me, the quest monologues were fun and interesting, but I figured they were more like the quest window that pops up before you accept the quest in WOW/Rift/etc (anyone remember when the quest text in that window slowly revealed itself instead of being on the screen all at once so the player could click 'accept quest' a microsecond later? Those were the days. Or something.), and I can dig that. It's not even that different from swtor's VERY numerous 'minor quests' where the only dialog was 'accept'/'accept while being a jerk'/'refuse' with the questgiver basically monologuing at you. It probably also helps that I'm not a native speaker, so things like accents don't really bug me one way or the other.

That said, I haven't logged in once since completing the main story, even though Funcom was able to sneakily renew my account for another month :why_so_serious: (see the h8 thread)


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 15, 2012, 09:47:38 AM
Thankfully very few accents annoy me.  I love hearing accents.  Poor delivery is far more likely to annoy me.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Amaron on August 17, 2012, 10:32:51 AM
Quick question to those that felt the story, quests and cut scenes were lacking: would you have felt the same way if you never played TOR?  Would the whole "mute protagonist" have bothered you as much?

Yes because you don't even get to make text choices.  BG taught me this long ago and I'd been arguing for that stuff long before SWTOR came out.  I don't mind being mute.  I mind being a moving prop.  That said I felt many of the cut scenes were great other than that.  I'm not sure about comparing them to SWTOR.  They shot for a smaller more mature audience and that gave them a huge leg up in writing.  

As for the game itself I just couldn't get into the combat long term.  Some of the weapons felt horrible mechanically and some I just didn't like.  The whole deck building concept fell apart because of this.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Typhon on August 17, 2012, 10:45:45 AM
(cutscene stuff)

As for the game itself I just couldn't get into the combat long term.  Some of the weapons felt horrible mechanically and some I just didn't like.  The whole deck building concept fell apart because of this.

I had this same exact problem.  I didn't like that my character was a mute half-wit, but I would have quickly ignored that if the weapon choices were something I liked, the combat was more fluid, the synergies *felt* better.

Starting off every combat spamming a builder five times... combat just felt flat.  A part from CC, the different decks just felt like different variations of the same thing on top of base weapon (QL) damage.

For what it's worth I went Ele + Fist to start, then switched to Ele + Blood (to make a chain+afflict synergy deck).  I had QL5 weapons in Blue Mountain, which is where I quit in disgust.  I'm still scratching my head over what I missed when I read people getting so into deck building, because I felt that weapon QL was 95% of the damage you do.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Nevermore on August 17, 2012, 11:22:08 AM
Well for one thing, with fully a third of the weapons (Blades, Hammers, Fists) you automatically start off with a 5 stack so if you hate having to build up at the beginning of a fight you might want to try one of those.

As for the deck building, it mostly had to do with finding synergies.  I know I was working on a Blades AoE that applied affliction and then automatically penetrated anything that was afflicted.  It was going to be tankish and melt groups, which I'm sure is different from other builds that might focus on something else like high single target ranged damage that keyed off of hinders or something.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: DraconianOne on August 23, 2012, 04:19:37 AM
Funcom lay off "half of the company's personnel" (http://www.theverge.com/gaming/2012/8/21/3258549/layoffs-come-to-the-secret-world-developer-funcom)

Ouch.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rokal on August 28, 2012, 06:51:21 PM
I didn't see this linked anywhere on here yet, but apparently Secret World sold over 200k copies (http://tswsociety.com/funcom-report-puts-secret-world-sales-at-over-200000/) which was "below expectations".

Given all the activity here and on other forums, it also strikes me as being significantly lower than I'd have guessed.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Segoris on August 28, 2012, 07:14:39 PM
Wow :(

I figured they would have been at 400k+


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ingmar on August 28, 2012, 07:19:56 PM
I'm not too super surprised - I suspect a lot of people who might otherwise have bought a game like this day 1 were in wait-a-few-months mode because the Funcom brand was already so damaged in terms of their reputation for being able to launch games in a playable state.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ghambit on August 29, 2012, 01:51:03 AM
I just attribute it to shitty marketing and pisspoor rapport with reviewers.  Also, I would've made Kingsmouth totally free to play and then only require a sub. to continue.  Or at the very least a meaningful (not just 24hrs) free trial at release time.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 29, 2012, 09:43:23 AM
That number is a lot lower than I expected.

Poor marketing, "lol Funcom" effect, and releasing right before GW2 and Pandas were probably all negative factors.  Mostly marketing though.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: tmp on August 29, 2012, 11:38:55 AM

Mostly marketing though.
Also the double-dipping with subscription fee and the cash shop (together with aggressive nickel-and-diming even before the launch). Very effective at creating a "fuck you" reaction even if one might've been mildly interested in the game otherwise.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Rasix on August 29, 2012, 11:56:46 AM
Sad to hear the numbers, but as I said earlier in the thread:

Quote
Game is niche of niche and from Funcom.  I'm not sure it ever had a fighting chance just based on that.

I expected something closer to 350k just based on the word of mouth, but having a sub fee nowadays puts you at a disadvantage.  Ohh well, I'm probably done with the game anyhow.  I didn't care much for the first content pack they released, as it had a shit ton of investigation missions.  I really dislike these missions.  If they were a bit more active puzzle solving and a bit less dictation, google, and extra-sensory perception I might like them a bit more.  They tell a good story, but they involve a level of effort I don't care to put forth in my leisure time. 


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Ghambit on August 29, 2012, 08:14:31 PM
I wouldn't call the game niche because everything they've put in the game is apparent in other games (the skill/deck system, combat, puzzles, etc.).  It's just not your typical MMO, which given the space currently is probably a good thing.  Lovecraftian-Crowlian horror isnt niche either; it's popularized.  FC just failed to capitalize on it.

I'm a bit like Rasix in that the game does indeed require a lot of effort to fully appreciate, and that bothers me at times.  Because of this my sessions aren't marathons, but more like sitting down to read a good book before bed. 


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: UnSub on August 29, 2012, 09:49:34 PM
I agree that TSW launched at an odd point. After-ish Diablo III, before WoW: Panda Edition and GW2. Funcom must have had some concept that such things would impact their game, but thought they'd stand out by going the different path with TSW. That didn't work.

Also interesting that they said over 1m people signed up for beta, 500k were in beta and only 200k or so bought the box. I wonder if more people in beta would have lead to more TSW sales if it is true that playing the game made you more interested in it.

Another thing I see behind Funcom's problems is that SWOR's launch looks to have basically halved their revenue and those players haven't come back. I'm guessing they are waiting in SWOR / without a game until GW2 launches.

Plus Funcom hasn't had a profitable quarter since Q4 2010 (by EBITDA) if my scan of their financial reports is correct.

Not sure if LEGO Minifigures is going to save them. If they make it a prettier Minecraft clone that might help.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Furiously on August 30, 2012, 10:04:44 AM
Game deserved more than 200,000 sales. They should just turn it into a single player game and rerelease it.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Nebu on August 30, 2012, 10:28:21 AM
Game deserved more than 200,000 sales. They should just turn it into a single player game and rerelease it.

I agree with this 100%.  The single player play was wonderful.  As a group game, I wasn't impressed... and the pvp was horribad. 


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Tmon on August 30, 2012, 12:03:50 PM
I expected something closer to 350k just based on the word of mouth, but having a sub fee nowadays puts you at a disadvantage...

The sub is what kept me from buying this and TOR.  I've become spoiled by being able to come and go as I please and target my $15 a month in manner that suits my play style and available time.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Threash on August 30, 2012, 12:09:34 PM
Hopefully they'll have good retention rates at least, i know i'll stay subbed for a while because i'm working through the story at a snails pace.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: UnSub on August 30, 2012, 09:01:26 PM
TSW is going to run right into GW2 and WoW: Panda though. That's going to hurt retention a lot.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Surlyboi on August 31, 2012, 06:56:13 AM
Not for me.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Lantyssa on August 31, 2012, 08:42:38 AM
I'm staying subbed for now even with GW2 and MWO occupying most of my time.  It's one of those "I want to support the effort" type subs, since I do appreciate the game.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Miasma on August 31, 2012, 09:27:47 AM
I bought a lifetime sub a couple weeks ago for the same reason.  If history repeats itself it means that Funcom will go bankrupt and shut the servers down in a few months like the only other time I ever bought a lifetims sub, Hellgate London...


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Wasted on August 31, 2012, 10:22:46 AM
Yeah I went the lifetime sub as well.  I felt a bit weird after, like I was just daring them to go free to play in a month.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Surlyboi on August 31, 2012, 10:57:17 AM
I also got a lifetime. The game deserves it, as far as I'm concerned.


Title: Re: Investor Press Release
Post by: Genev on August 31, 2012, 11:37:16 AM
Lifetime, i'm hoping i'll keep playing long enough to make it worth it. Currently i'm all about GW2, but eventually i'll do that lesser as well and go back to TSW and D3 :)