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Reader Comments (42)

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:17PM Mr Angry said

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Very sad, don't really know what this says about the future of the game, polish is important to players, and losing QA resource and playtesters, means they will just ask members of their community to do this for free.

I don't know how well WAR is doing right now, but I don't think they'd make these type of cuts if things were a raging success. Maybe they are just shedding additional staff a bit after launch, if so, they could have at least expressed it that way.

Maybe people with their feet up on the desks will appreciate that no one has a job for life and it might pay to look busy. Maybe people who are preoccupied with making endless youtube videos of themselves, will stop mucking about and act a little more professionally.

The people who have gone are those who really had to work at the sharp end of the industry, and for every one producer, there are many many support staff, QA staff and testers waiting to fill that role. I hope this acts as a wake up call to those at the helm of this ship.

thanks

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:25PM Idle said

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Well said. Companies use times like this to get rid of the 'less productive' people who it would've been harder to justify firing in more prosperous times.

The key to success has always been relatively simple. Be reliable, work your butt off, and continue to educate yourself. The ability to adapt to change is a plus, as well.
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Posted: Jan 20th 2009 12:23PM Triskelion said

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Hey Angry - I was anti-WAR for quite a bit because I felt that they shit the bed for all of the reasons that have been covered here at Massively. I went back to WoW just before my first month of WAR was up - I felt that the game had numerous flaws, but the biggest for me were:

1 - UI responsiveness
2 - combat speed
3 - RvR was meaningless - for a game built around Keep sieges nobody wasn't was even RvR'ing, but just doing Scenarios.
4 - PVE was nonexistent - PQs got boring very quickly.

I went back to WAR after reading some of the changes; the UI was improved, combat feels faster and most of all they added some nice rewards for RvR. The wait times for Scenarios have shot up since almost everybody is running around RvR'ing - and its a blast now.

There are still some major issues with bugs, glitches and stability that need to be addressed in order to keep my interest moving forward.
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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:21PM Lethality said

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This is proof more than anything that Warhammer has failed to meet even the low expectations. You don't lay off people from a team that is firing on all cylinders.

Blizzard was able to fend off Vivendi because, well, how do you argue with millions of subscriptions. Mythic really should have tried harder, now it's completely clear they are not in control of their own destiny.


Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:28PM Idle said

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Using your logic, 90% of the companies in the US are totally failing right now. Everyone is cutting costs, trimming staff, and squeezing budgets.

EA is laying off 10% of their staff in total. Using your logic, all of their games are fail?
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Posted: Jan 20th 2009 12:12PM Triskelion said

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Remember the day EA bought Mythic? Go look for some photos of that presser, Jacobs has a smile on his face like you wouldn't believe. He was spewing about how EA would let them do their own thing, that it would be business as usual at Mythic, etc.

If this is in fact true I cannot wait to see how Jacobs will spin it and make it look like a positive - he'll claim that the QA team is now more nimble since it only has 2 people on it now.
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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:18PM Idle said

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At this point in the release, they may've been a bit heavy on the QA and playtest side, especially if they had pre-release levels of personnel. Hopefully the same is true of the customer support staff. Time will tell if this affects the quality of support they're offering.

The best case scenario is they're cutting fat as opposed to trimming folks who are vital to the game's success. Comparing it to what has happened at my company and most other companies in this economy, I'd say the fat cutting is the most likely scenario.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:24PM wjowski said

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And so it begins. EA's going keep cutting and cutting into Warhammer until it's a shell of the original game ala UO or until there's just nothing left ala Earth & Beyond.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:25PM (Unverified) said

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I predicted this.

If the game would fall under 250K, it would be considered under the return rate EA set out in Sep at lauch.

Last weekend and the weekend before we saw about a 10 to 20% further drop in number of players on Xfire.

About 4000 Xfire players, in Sep this was around 16K. That's 25% players of the initial 2 weeks in Sep where 700 K accounts were created according to Mark Jacobs.

That would mean the game is around 200k-220K subs at the moment. A lot less than the projected 1M by MJ.

The game is not good at all, we must be honest and EA's main MMORPG horse will now be KOTOR.

If more players will leave I don't think EA will support it under 150 K (too much servers and cost overhead for EA).

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:39PM Idle said

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The game is not good? That is an opinion and one that many, many people do not share with you.
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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 5:20PM Mr Angry said

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Mighty, It's also an opinion that many people would agree with, and given the XFire numbers, you could argue that up to 75% of people who tried it had that same opinion.

I don't think anyone would argue that it should be a whole lot better, regardless of if they like it now or not.

Unfortunately, MMO's rely on a critical mass to become effective, once the numbers dip, the resources can not be justified and the quality or amount of content can decline, which in turn gives folks more reason not to play for an extended period. I get the feeling this is right around that point for WAR and they need to do something drastic before things go downhill.

Releasing a class that was held back from release wasn't something I was thinking about (from a recent news story) and if they are holding back content, they need to understand that it's not about that right now, it's mechanics and stability.

I am a lot more enthusiastic about the zone domination ideas I've read, and I'd like to see some of the ideas on unit forming with NPC's and bonuses associated with fixed cooperative play implemented to make this a lot more akin to the tabletop experience.

I want this to be about at the endgame to stand in a line of tens or hundred of players approaching the enemy, then charging towards them, and definitely more than capturing the same keeps over and over.

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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 7:17PM Idle said

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You make some good points. Subs are less than at release. Within my own gaming circle, I'm seeing a lot of bouncing between games. They play WAR for a while, move to WoW for a bit, on to consoles for a month or two, and back to WAR again. I think there's too many really good options for any one game to draw huge numbers for years at a time.

WoW is lucky that it had time to 'saturate' before the current market came about. Hell, it created this market. 8) If you think about it, there's 11 million folks playing now but over its lifetime probably twice that many, or even more, have subbed at one point or other. WoW has given all those folks a great time over the years and they are likely to keep dipping back into it. They've reached a critical mass that can be self sustaining barring a total screw up. And Blizzard isn't likely to screw up.

I'm only frustrated at the constant, obviously over the top pronouncements that the game sucks terribly and it's dying fast. It's not an accurate picture to paint.

You're also right about it could be better. It will be. From what we've witnessed so far, they listen to the players, admit their faults, and work diligently to fix them. I'm looking forward to what they've announced and whatever else they throw in. The high level of polish will come with time just like in any other long standing MMO.

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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:26PM pcgneurotic said

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Mightyidle has it right. This is not a move targetted at Mythic or the WHO team specificaly; this is a company-wide, across-the-board move that happened to include what The Suits have always seen as least important - QA people. Historicaly, QA, Playtesting and Customer Support are always the first to go in any belt-tightening moves. That's all.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:33PM Lethality said

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Oh really? Other Vivendi companies had layoffs.. why do you suspect Blizzard didn't?

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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:37PM Idle said

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Because they went through a huge round of layoffs when the companies merged? Their fat has already been trimmed.

Open Google and do a search on 'Blizzard Layoff'.
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Posted: Jan 20th 2009 10:43AM (Unverified) said

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They might be the first to go, but it's also the sign that these projects aren't worth spending the money to maintain. Cutting back customer support may be a quick way to save money, but it costs in the long run in lower customer satisfaction. It's a cycle, and it ends with the product just going away.
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Posted: Jan 20th 2009 3:25PM pcgneurotic said

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You're right Cal, but in WHO's case, I just can't see it quietly sidlling off into the sunset. There's too much behind it already, and not in a Tabula Rasa, 'bloated, aimless disaster' kind of way.
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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:28PM pcgneurotic said

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Edit: Why (the f***) do so many people have it in for WHO? Talk about f***ing vultures sharpening their claws. *mystified*

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 5:08PM wjowski said

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Personally I'm just predicting how long it'll be before EA...well...pulls an EA.
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Posted: Jan 19th 2009 4:35PM Idle said

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WoW players. They see anything that isn't WoW as the enemy. It's like a religion. It's not that WAR is bad, but it may have one or two points where it is better than WoW and that can't be allowed. It's as if they feel threatened even though there's no reason to.



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