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Reader Comments (38)

Posted: May 20th 2009 9:39PM Gaugamela said

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Well, but fanboys aren't the point of this topic Dethgar. Annd in fact many times fanboys arise as a "immunitary" reaction of a comunity against trolls.
Because, trust me when people are flamed by offering constructive criticism of a game it's usually because they are fed up of putting up with asshats that instead are just provoking people for the fun of it.
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Posted: May 20th 2009 4:43PM (Unverified) said

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I think the majority of 'nerd rage' comes about because the internet is no longer the domain of nerds, and that pisses off a lot of them. Technology, and by extension games, has become accessible to the masses and hence big business, and that has altered some of the things early-adopting nerds came to love about mmorpgs.

Secondly, developers invite negativity because of the way the majority of them treat their players. There are a few exceptions, but by and large, you have designers who care more about making a game time-consuming enough that people will continue subscribing rather than about making it fun.

This is a very condescending/demeaning attitude to take towards people who pay you recurring revenue every month, and it builds resentment over time. Don't believe me? Check out Craig Morrison's comments over at mmogamer.com: http://www.mmogamer.com/05/15/2009/why-cant-mmos-just-be-fun/3

MMOs are inherently insulting in a way that few other forms of entertainment are: basically they're about being on a treadmill, which varies slightly from game to game, but ultimately boils down to the same grind for items/levels/territory/whatever. Until developers break out of their lazy streak and actually make a virtual world instead of a virtual babysitter, expect more nerd rage.

Posted: May 20th 2009 4:47PM Mr Angry said

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Hmm you make some very very good points here, and you are in no way affiliated with me!!!!! I think we should be either great friends, or very bitter enemies, either way, I'm happy to read your contribution.
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Posted: May 20th 2009 5:19PM Thac0 said

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I like you too Semi Angry, You make a lot of points that are very valid, i wish I posted that!
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Posted: May 20th 2009 4:35PM (Unverified) said

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seems a lot of comments are focused on n-rage in forums. fine, great, that is a place for it, and easy enough to ignore (it is part of the reason i have stopped reading one of massively's sister sites).

other comments speak about the response to game issues, but the solution there is easy, stop paying for a product you can not enjoy.

but when the MMO itself is enjoyable to play, enjoyable enough to pay for, then that is the point that n-rage starts to cost something. by this i mean in game n-rage. by their very nature MMOs require interacting with other people you have never met in real life (and most likely you never will). of these there is the very irritating minority that behave in the same way as the ragers on the forums. every time i have been itching to cancel my account with an MMO it has been a result of the players, not the game itself. these are frequently the people that think they are the best player of the game, and any failure is obviously the fault of someone else. they will do their best to rally support in attacking their victim du jour; surprisingly getting it more times than not. sometimes they come from another angle, the worst player in the game that requires you to help them, unless you want to be followed and harassed for the remainder of their time online. either way they are full of n-rage and just waiting to spew it anywhere they can. they feel the game community owes them something... which we don't. but they definitely make the game less enjoyable, and in a sense cost us the money we pay for entertaining ourselves. how long would you sit a movie theater while someone behind you talks on their cell phone without thinking "i payed to watch this movie, not listen to them!". i guess n-rage gives rise to n-rage.

the next generation games need to address this. even forums provide a ranking system, player controlled ranking need to be part of the MMO future. on both character and account level. some games may already have some level of this, but i personally have not seen it. it needs to be well rounded, difficult to abuse, and done in a way that rewards enjoyable decent interactions but warns others of those to avoid.

Posted: May 20th 2009 4:56PM (Unverified) said

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I totally agree with this blog.

A game takes a long process to be made and people can't remake the game from scratch.

Instead of writing all these stuff that put down the game completely why not criticize so the devs can learn and improve the game?

What i also hate are people that judge the game by only playing a portion of it.

Oh No! I can't kill more than 2 mobs at once in Spellborn! ...... Did you try dodging?

What i also hate are people that compare every MMO to Warcraft.

Guildwars sucks because it's lvl cap is only 20! ..... Lvling isn't the point in Gw :P

Instead telling people why you hate this game so much....why not just go back and play the games you like?

Posted: May 21st 2009 11:42AM (Unverified) said

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to compare your comment to WoW ;P
interestingly, in Wow too, the real 'game' does not start until you hit the level cap. so a lower level cap actually means a shorter trip to where the devs really pack in the fun. in WoW if you go to the burning crusades content these days there is almost nobody there; aside from people trying to get it over with as quick as possible so they can get to the new shiny.

you touch on an interesting point that i think we will see fade away in the next few years. in an MMO leveling can be a pointless grind and the devs are most likely to target the 'fun' and the largest audience, which, given time, will always be the level capped players. so just do away with levels all together. WoW has two alternatives already, talent trees and reputation. i would love to see a game that has talent trees to make the tech trees in the Sid Meier games look trivial. there are no exp points, but there are tree and branch points earned. want to be a plate wearing magic wielding thief? given enough play time, why not?
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Posted: May 20th 2009 5:01PM postman said

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i actually just stopped reading anything that Mr. Angry wrote about a year ago when he went on his holy crusade against age of conan, there was another guy too. david? i think that was his name.


Posted: May 20th 2009 5:12PM Mr Angry said

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Great that my contributions are appreciated after a whole year! Could you remind me who you are again, did you use another new name?
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Posted: May 20th 2009 5:14PM postman said

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nope, been the same name. i might have been djpostman prior but that was a while ago.
im sorry where you trying to make me feel little by acting like you didnt know who i was, on the internet?

that hurts man it really does
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Posted: May 20th 2009 5:18PM (Unverified) said

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Without criticism or competition, companies and their products would stagnate like the US Auto Industry.

Dont encourage this for our beloved videogames, ktx.

Posted: May 20th 2009 11:01PM Idle said

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I haven't posted here in months just because of the nerd rage outlined in this article. It would be nice to read an article and then browse insightful, if differing, opinions. Instead, all you really get is a bunch of over-the-top negativity. It's disappointing how people act.

Not only do people want to evangelize against what they don't like, they seem intent on spoiling things for people who are having good time by flaming them down and degrading them.

It wouldn't even be so bad if their flaming vitriol was based on facts or recent experiences. Most of these people, however, are basing their hate on hearsay and outdated information. They simply see a game's name in a title and start lobbing grenades. Most of the time, it's pretty obvious they haven't even read the article. It's sad how small and petty some people can be.

The most astonishing thing I see is how some people feel that, by people liking a certain game, it somehow degrades the game they are playing. It's like they have a religious fanaticism about their game and they feel threatened by anything that may draw even a few followers.

Posted: May 21st 2009 10:27AM (Unverified) said

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I agree with most of the article, but it should be noted that constructive does not mean negative. Both positive and negative feedback - if intended to be taken seriously - should be constructive. "This game is awesome" is almost just as bad as "this game sucks" because we all know that MMOs change. Are we changing the part that's awesome, or the part that sucks? If all the feedback received is generic it becomes a guessing game.

RE: point #1 - Absolutely. I get so sick of reading people's "it's easy, all you need to do is this" posts. I'm a web developer so I understand a little bit about chain reactions. This week I had to fix 1 problem on the company website. I fixed it alright, but the fix caused 5 other things to break. I fixed the 5 other things and then 2 more problems were created. And this is only on a relatively small 2-dimensional website with a simple database backend. A 3D persistent world with multiple systems consisting of terabytes of data over multiple servers is absolutely impossible for Joe MMOer to comprehend. Sure, he can comprehend what he sees, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. There is SO MUCH under the surface.

Posted: May 21st 2009 2:23PM Angelworks said

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For Mr. Angry at top...

Its kind of a goofy problem - after doing technical support (currently unemployed) for several years (over 10) I was impressed upon the fact that there was no making customers happy. If you released patches every other quarter people complained than you never fixed anything, however if you released patches every quarter people complained about releasing too many patches (I think people were annoying about being prompted to install patches more than anything...). If you were quiet about security issues customers got upset that you didn't disclose anything, but if you are upfront about it - customers were upset about the security hole. With all this noise - trust me - its hard to figure out what customers really want or what are priorities to fix. At my last job engineering relied on tech support tier 3's (like me!) to point them in the right directions - and I based all my decisions on what annoyed me, call volume (which costs money - about 70$ per call!) and forum posts. Forum posts were the most annoying though because there really are a lot of people who just blather about whatever comes to mind. You could have a customer who has a virus/spyware ridden machine that had every problem one could have with our product - but it didn't mean anything on our end needed to be fixed.

If you want your forum post to mean something - say something like "this is how I think this should work" or "a really annoying bug is x, and here's why it ruins my workflow (or gameplay)" and give a business case reason why it sucks (xyz bug is costing me millions of dollars because..., my dps sucks because of this bug, this design decision doesn't promote good sportmanship [would say this about blizzard achievements]) - and I think this what this article is really about.

Gamers have to rely on customer service and engineering more and more with mmo's than most other games and I think most game companies are really unprepared to deal with this (Warhammer's lack of official forums really hurt them I think - as an example). Blizzard and CCP I honestly think is far better at this than any other game company because they realize this fact and have devoted a lot of engineering resources and manpower to at least try to make things work and make customers happy.

Posted: May 24th 2009 5:01PM asphyxiac said

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Is this nerdrage about nerdrage? How meta of you, Colin.

Posted: May 24th 2009 10:52PM Seraphina Brennan said

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I like to think of it as recursive nerdrage. :)
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Posted: May 26th 2009 9:20AM Norvak said

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awesome article. I agree with everything on here. People talk smack online just because they can, or they just want everyone to like the same game they like.

The squeaky wheel doesn't always get the grease. Sometimes it gets stfu.

Posted: May 29th 2009 5:12PM (Unverified) said

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Very good article in my oppinion. And in regards to the 'challenge' at the end, I tried making a board game almost from scratch in public school. It was hard. And in the testing phase, the testers didn't so much say that it sucked, they didn't even bother to try.

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