| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (32)

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 1:46PM (Unverified) said

  • 1 heart
  • Report

Honestly why do you respect Turbine? Why should anyone? They have made Draconian move after Draconian move, they shut down AC2 days after releasing the expansion pack, They have let the community forums and in game chat in LOTRO become a cesspool...and five minutes with their so called community managers will convince anyone that they don't give a flying rats ass about the players and considers them the unwashed masses.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 2:11PM drakon said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
AC2 was shutdown because it was a terrible game and a complete money sink.

Yes it was a bad move to shut it down right after the expansion. But there were a couple factors why. First and most important I believe the expansion was the critical point in whether to shut it down or not. If the expansion sold well we probably would still have AC2 operating today. The fact it didn't sell very well is why its gone. Second and slightly less important, there was probably immense pressure from the two private venture capital companies that owned it at the time to recoup some of the development costs as quick as possible.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 6:24PM (Unverified) said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
AC2 will always be a black hole in the giant love I had for turbine at the time. I was a long time and very happy ac1 player and was hoping the new game would be similar but with improved graphics and gameplay. What we got was one of the worst mmo's I have ever played. I will never forget that a week after ac2 had launched 100% of my barony that had left for it had already returned with storm clouds over their heads.
Allot of people called it a $50 lesson about buying an mmo on launch.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 2:36PM Solp said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
The whole thing was a total fail on Turbine's part; anyone affected had every right to nerdrage, regardless of the "throwing a bone" to the developers. There was no correspondence to the playerbase until: "Oh, we made a mistake, have some Turbine points."

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 3:31PM Tanek said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
"anyone affected had every right to nerdrage"

I can not agree with this. No matter what happens in your game(s) of choice, I don't think anyone who spews the kind of vitriol and personal attacks I see on forums is in the right.

Now, if you want to say that the person has every right to be upset, fine. Many people who are upset because of a problem/update/feature/etc have been able to express their displeasure on forums in a civil manner. I have yet to see "nerdrage" result in anything good.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 3:51PM Solp said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Maybe nerdrage was the wrong word then, since I've always considered nerdrage to be the lore-lover going nuts over their character.

Perhaps: "They had every right to be really pissed off."

Either way, their initial handling of it all was abysmal.

P.S: I don't condone personal attacks on staff, either.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 3:06PM Space Cobra said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Here is my take on things:

The person in charge (on that work-shift) at that time probably did not feel he should have posted a statement. Most likely because there are rules and such statements need to go through a corporate person in charge of community relations. There is too much structure and rules in these cases, however, such rules are to protect the company: If such a person types in something like, "We are going to have this fixed within a few hours," and it goes for a day or two, the community becomes angry.

Needless to say, this should've ALSO applied to the bannings in question: They should have been discussed before hand with someone in charge. A general statement should have been released on the forums explaining the upcoming bans, then the ban should have fallen. Such things like this handled at "the end of the day" are even unprofessional in the Corporate world: You don't send important info to a client that needs it at 6pm; you head off trouble and call them back at 4pm or so and explain you don't have the info yet.

Yes, players get over-wrought, but so do customers in brick-n-mortar stores and they don't appreciate tactics such as these, much like online customers.

And about threads: Sometimes it is best to let people vent. If they wanted to close threads, fine, but leave at least one thread open and merge/close the other threads. It's not a perfect situation, but it is better than continually deleting threads without no statement forthcoming.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 5:24PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Actually, nobody at Turbine even knew that these accidental bans were going to take place. The bans happened after the software-based automated ban system had a glitch, which resulted in a couple thousand accounts being banned.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 3:10PM Yukon Sam said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
"Someone in charge was obviously around, because they were deleting threads."

The people deleting threads are board mods. I don't know how Turbine handles theirs, but I worked as a contract board mod for EA. The mods don't necessarily have any greater access to devs than the average player. We reported directly to the community manager, and she relayed info to the dev team. If the CM wasn't available at any given time, we were on our own.

Mods enforce policy. They're often given a great deal of latitude on how to enforce it. Sometimes they make a bad call. And sometimes they single-handedly head off a tidal wave that would make the forums unusable for any purpose other than endlessly rehashing a situation affecting a small minority of players when nothing can be done about it at the moment.

I don't have the facts on this case, but I suspect it falls into the latter category.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 8:37PM DataShade said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
Even - especially - if the board moderator is entrusted with a "license to kill" for threads that are offensive or violate the terms of use, then those mods should be selected from candidates who are responsible and even-tempered enough to be entrusted to make statements, like starting a sticky saying "MABAR BANNING: PLEASE READ" and say something like "We've seen a large number of complaints about undeserved bannings, and an investigation has been opened. If you were affected please use the customer service contact information in the ban email, and make sure you choose the categories X and Y so we can more easily identify complaints about the bans and address this issue with the proper urgency. Please remain calm while we investigate. Meanwhile, be aware that posts or threads about the bans will be deleted as they are found, and repeated attempts to start new threads about the ban will be treated as a conduct violation."

You're never going to make everyone happy, but "you're never going to make everyone happy" is itself not a reason to just pull down your pants and crap on someone's face.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 4:00PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
So, off topic question.. If I wanted to get into the game, which would be a good server with a decent dose of rp and a semi-friendly community?

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 5:38PM agitatedandroid said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Thelanis.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 5:14PM (Unverified) said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
The mods banned the words "Hi Welcome" from the forum. You really need to gather a little more data. There was a similar ban initiated for a "Guild Renown" exploit a few months back that caught people that I feel would not exploit the game.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 6:06PM (Unverified) said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
The interesting part is that as recently as July a massive indescriminate automated banning process took place. With, I'm sure, a lot of innocents involved as well. This was centered around the newly introduced Guild Renown system.

Users, on mass, were banned without warning. Many for unknown reasons, Turbine does not feel the need to inform a player in their e-mail of the exact details of their ban, so customers have to submit web based enquiries that are never answered.

I wasn't affected in the July incident, but was in the latest, but a close friend was and it caused him to leave. I tried to protest the banning at that time too, but was only rewarded with people not believing it was in error and an infraction applied to my account.

How can Turbine have us believe that the vague nature of their ban e-mails and the automated process did not affect a lot more people in the previous mass banning events.

I'm concerned this has been going on for a long time, and the cone of silence they employee allows them to wrongly affect their player base.

Transparency is all we ask.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 8:14PM DataShade said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Transparency is almost always the answer (notable exceptions for questions like "does this dress make me look fat?"), so in the interest of transparency ...

how did *you* get an infraction on your account when your friend got banned?
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 6:23PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
"Someone in charge was obviously around, because they were deleting threads."

Now that depends. The person deleting threads and locking them has only power of/on the forums. NOT in the internals of Turbine which is where the problem really was.

That person was also locking threads and deleting because of the language used. Those posts that were done in a more mature fashion did not get locked.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 7:00PM Graill440 said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
OP, you dont fault Turbine? I do fault them.

The training the GM's receive and the training the community managers recieve is not close to whats needed in situations requiring common sense and fast action. The simple fact that it even happened tells everyone involved one thing, proper training on the part of Turbine employees did not happen. (Doesnt seem to have chaged in the last two years) Blame the flow chart. (grin)

The fans knew it was a mistake, pretty much everyone did except the improperly trained Turbine employees. Now in the aftermath has Turbine recertified its GM's? Are they even certified? I found through interviews that if you know how to modify a webpage, can utilize excel, powerpoint, can talk and type and have a "passion for gaming" you have all you need to be a GM, common sense and wisdom need not apply, just be able to read a flow chart. A pretty weak set of requirements.

Is it scary to state that amongst the big MMO makers that i have been told even family members are given priority regardless of the qualifications to these positions. (Grin SOE)

And yet, there are the gamers, that have the option to pay and put up with this, and just continue to let it happen, it being the reform the gaming industry needs in both ISO regulation and management. Eventually it come.

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 7:55PM DataShade said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
What you're describing isn't "MMOs," it's "customer service at a large corporation." Look at things like http://con.st/10012498 - Nordstrom's old Employee Handbook consisted, basically, of a single rule: "use your best judgement," along with the caveat: "ask a supervisor or manager if you're not sure."

Since then, however, customer service representatives have come to be treated as liabilities instead of assets. It's such a sweeping change that I can't blame it on any one thing. At the same time, consumer entitlement levels have shot through the roof - visit notalwaysright.com and read the examples, or, say, date a waitress - and no failure or disappointment, even those due to consumer error or ignorance, will be tolerated.

The end result is that every CSR - whether in a physical transaction like a bank teller or a grocery clerk, to phone support or email - is compartmentalized, tasked with specific responsibilities, permitted limited privileges, encouraged to transfer or "escalate" complaints outside their sphere of responsibility, and threatened with termination for "exceeding support boundaries." Hell, it was like that even when I was a college student working for my school providing IT support part-time, way back last century (=P).

Fixing this problem is going to require a "sea change," where either every company that loses a certain amount of consumer trust gets stormed, a la Rubi's torches and pitchforks, and burned to the ground, or where Internet Tough Guys who rant about terrible CS begin to affect real change and form some kind of carbon-swap equivalent International Boycott League, where if you're pissed at Turbine you stop buying all Warner Entertainment products, or pledge to stop buying your favorite soda so some other guy who spends more on games than you do will stop buying on your behalf, etc etc.
Reply

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 7:50PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Hey, do people play MMOS to play MMOS or to hang around forums? I have never been banned from a forum because i am too busy playing a game...

Imagine there were forums in the old school dayz...

Man, i don't like the way Pac Man eats the ghosts....his movement is too slow..
Why isn't Pac Man a girl...I would love it if they gave us an option...

I put in fifty cents and the game stole my money.. i'm never playing Space Invaders again....

Posted: Nov 12th 2010 8:05PM DataShade said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
These weren't forum bans. Thousands of people were locked out of the game, and if Turbine's glowing praise for the F2P model is to be believed, many of those banned were paying customers.

There wasn't really an internet in the "old dayz." There were BBSs, and if people didn't complain on those I'm apparently stuffed full of false memories.

If you didn't know anyone who swore off one particular arcade game or another, or never lost lunch money because "the game cheated," then I'm not sure how you can reminisce about the good old days, because you obviously weren't there. =P
Reply

Featured Stories

One Shots: Ignore physics and jump already!

Posted on Dec 28th 2014 10:00AM

Make My MMO: December 21 - 27, 2014

Posted on Dec 27th 2014 8:00PM

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW