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Reader Comments (40)

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 12:19PM bobfish said

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Time to move on Jef, as much as I love AoC, since the expansion things just haven't been the same.

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 2:52PM Poordevil said

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@bobfish

Move on to what? There is nothing else like AoC in the MMO genre. The realistic art style and graphics, beautiful environments based off Howard's stories, DX10 support, unmatched horse and rider animations, brutal combat with fatalities. This game, as imperfect as some perceive it, is offering much that is totally unique. There really is no walking away from AoC and finding a comparable replacement.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 12:20PM Bravura said

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"Issue number two is Funcom's emulation of the U.S. Congress, or more specifically, the latter's affinity for ramming unpopular legislation down the throats of a populace that clearly doesn't want it."

I didn't realize Republicans played MMOs.

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 1:02PM DiscordSK said

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@Bravura
That upper 1% has got to do something with that much needed tax break they recieved.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 1:50PM NeverDeath said

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@Bravura

You obviously don't pay any attention to recent events, because that is exactly what the Hussein administration is doing, shoving things down the throats of the American people that they don't effing want or need with his socialist front and his fascistagenda. Yeah, I'd say the state of the country since he's taken office has become just ever so much better, wouldn't you?
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 2:32PM Bravura said

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@NeverDeath
Hussein administration, good one.
Where to start? Surveys showed throughout the healthcare debate that the majority of Americans wanted reform, and in the end the healthcare reform we got is going to have very little impact on our current system. Unless you're a high-powered insurance executive who exploits the sick and dying, nothing will change for you under 'Obamacare.'

Not sure if you understand the meaning of the word fascist, or for that matter, socialist. Not only do neither of these terms apply to Barack Obama, they really don't apply to anyone in American politics (with the exception of Bernie Sanders, who identifies himself as a Democratic Socialist). Also, don't forget that the bank bailout, which so many of the Neo-Cons like to attribute solely to Obama, began under George W. Bush, when he handed the reins of our economic system over to Wall Street with TARP in 2008.

Our current economic situation was caused solely due to the radical deregulation of our financial system under Bill Clinton and George Dubbya (the seeds sown a couple of decades ago by Reagan). Obama passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (you know it as 'The Stimulus,') which contained a massive tax cut (40% of the cost of the bill) for those in the middle class, the largest in a long time. In a study published by former Federal Reserve Vice-Chairman Alan Blinder, it is estimated that the stimulus saved 8.5 million jobs, and prevented us from experiencing deflation instead of low inflation.

Perhaps you're right, though, and the majority of the Americans don't want any of this. Maybe it has something to do with the misinformation they're given by those on the right (and the left), which leads them to fundamental misunderstanding of the way their political system works.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 12:48PM archipelagos said

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"Issue number two is Funcom's emulation of the U.S. Congress, or more specifically, the latter's affinity for ramming unpopular legislation down the throats of a populace that clearly doesn't want it."

Oh dear. Oh dear. Massively...Tut tut.

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 1:39PM Dblade said

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Odd argument. It sounds like experienced players were using Tortage areas as level capped PvP. That is still going to kill true newbies due to vet experience and level difference, and that's probably why they did it: they saw that most true newbies were avoiding the PvP server because they couldn't learn the game due to all the high level alts PvPing in it.

Your solution is...for those newbies to roll on PvE servers.

I'd think with your experience in DF you'd realize that a game designed more around solo leveling couldn't hack hour one PvP.

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 3:55PM Jef Reahard said

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@Dblade

That would be true if you were required to go through the Underhalls and White Sands. As I said though, those are two zones are entirely optional, and there's so many other things to do and places to go on Tortage that I found it odd they would do that at this point.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 1:44PM Craig Silirrion Morrison said

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Hi Jeff,

Firstly, yes, I guess we can say it must appear as 'suspicious' from the outside looking in in terms of it 'sneaking in'. I can acknowledge that, the simple fact here was that we are in the middle of a complex deployment (the 2.1 series has many elements to it, and internally that means a lot of new builds). I agree it would have been far better for people to have seen this on the test server first, as was the intention. That isn't an excuse, it was just a genuine mistake that meant it got into the live build. Once that happened I made the call that there was little point in removing it again for just a few weeks.

Secondly, on the larger issue, it is a little inherent in the nature of an MMO. I think the team made the right choice in protecting new players in this way. There was no was virtually no 'real' PVP happening in that area. This was about protecting new players from anti-social behvior early in their experience.

Very few players were taking part in PVP in that area, and those that were, were predominantly picking on new players or padding their stats. This was simply a move, long requested by many new players, that was probably long overdue. If anything we waited too long because we were maybe too sensitive to the negative feedback from that minority that liked taking part in that behvior, and in how it could be misinterpreted as 'diluting' the PVP servers.

This was not about anything like that, it was simply a move made to improve the experience for new players. That is to everyone's benefit as less players will quit in frustration when they experience that aspect of the game, so early, when they have little or no defense against it.

If we felt that those who liked it the old way were right, and if we felt they were actually taking part in fun and compelling PVP then we wouldn't have chosen to change anything. We only make changes like this when we are comfortable that it is indeed, as you suggested, the best thing for the game in the long term.

Obviously those who disagree complain when it happens. That doesn't necessarily mean we are 'ramming unpopular legislation down the throats of a populace that clearly doesn't want it', I think that is a touch harsh of an assessment, even if I understand where it comes from.

Yes, we fully accept that this one could have been introduced in a better way, we put our hands up straight away that it was error. The community team were very reactive and acted to explain as soon as they had confirmed it, and asked us what happened. I was asked whether we should pull it quickly with an emergency update, or keep it live and explain the error, I chose the latter as I didn't want to bring in another update for something we would release anyway soon after. I fully understand that the internet likes to see conspiracy theories in such errors, and all i can do there is assure you that it wasn't the case.

So people have our genuine apologies for the way in which it made it to the live servers, hopefully it can be taken as that :) We do believe the change itself is the right call for the long term.

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 2:28PM Mykell said

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@Craig Silirrion Morrison
Your mistake was putting in a change like this without announcing it ahead of time and letting the community debate it and have time to get used to the idea.

You've obviously been thinking about this for some time so when you did make the decision you should have informed everyone straight away. Your community team should have been proactive not reactive.

It may have been a genuine mistake but it looks like a sneaky thing to do and first impressions count for a lot of people. If Funcom wants to get some credibility back from the wider mmo community it needs to start learning from past mistakes.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 2:43PM Craig Silirrion Morrison said

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@Mykell No debate there, as I said above we put our hands up to that. It was intended that it should go to the test server and people would see in advance. It was a genuine mistake, just human error, and you always try and learn from those kind of things!
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 3:46PM Jef Reahard said

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@Craig Silirrion Morrison

That's fair enough, and I thank you for taking the time to comment and further illustrate Funcom's position.

I was surprised at the way this went down, tbh. Funcom has always been pretty good about letting people know where they're going, and this blindsided some folks (even people like me who don't care all that much about PvP).
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 4:46PM Laguna said

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@Craig Silirrion Morrison

I really wished AoC played as darkfall, damm that would have been sweet.

Sorry for derailing discussion please carry on.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 5:45PM alucard3000 said

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@Craig Silirrion Morrison I never was a fan of getting griefed by higher levels in either of those 2 areas but I must say that I agree with Jef that both areas were not necessary to level up and could be totally avoided.It would seem that you could have put up big warning signs "Danger Enter at Your Own Risk" signs outside of both instances and kept everyone happy.Seems like a move to get the endless trial users to either sub or move on.I guess that is one way to lighten the load on your servers :).
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 2:30PM SgtBaker1234556 said

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Jeff - your article comes across as rather nerdragey and whiny and mixing in U.S politics as an insult doesn't make it much better, I'm surprised your editor let that through. You might want to consider taking a step back. Maybe a break for a week or two, do stuff in RL, meet your friends and family - just to let cooler heads prevail?

I don't really see why you're being so upset - removing PvP from newbie zones is a good thing (for any game - even cutthroat games like EVE dish out bans to people who grief in newbie systems).

Secondly - a patch gone bad in a MMO? Nooooh... shocking!

Anyway, you already got pwned by a dev in your own article, so I guess I don't have to go on...

Posted: Dec 12th 2010 2:45PM Nyan said

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@SgtBaker1234556 I'm pretty sure Jef's opinion goes hand in hand with the opinion of the general population. You're suggesting he detaches himself from the game (and his job) and writes a half-caring casual player column instead of comments and critiques about actual issues which people who are passionate about the game are facing.

Also I don't see how he got "pwned". He wasn't wrong in anything he said :) might wanna take a step back yourself.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 3:03PM SgtBaker1234556 said

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@Nyan

Maybe, but he just reminded me a lot about my 4 year old, when she throws a fit - baking in sighs and half-insults in his article. He could have presented his caring, passionate opinion without sperging like a fanboy. Like I said, I guess his editor should have caught that.

Just scroll up and see how the whole discussion deteriorates into a useless political debate and trolling....

I won't comment on what the general population of AoC might think, because I don't represent them. Maybe you do and maybe they all are totally enraged. In my experience though, in most MMOs, the general population doesn't really have any clue what changes patches bring because they don't read the game forums or sites like Massively.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 4:13PM Jef Reahard said

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@SgtBaker1234556

Baker while I appreciate your comments, I get the feeling you haven't read many of my columns if you're slinging around labels like fanboy, lol. I like AoC well enough, but it's also got its share of problems, and I'm not interested in lobbing softballs and making sure I'm PC enough to avoid offending those with delicate sensibilities.

If this were a straight up news report, you might have a point, but it's an editorial. If parts of it rubbed you the wrong the way, such is the nature of opinion pieces, but nothing was missed by my editor.

Thanks for reading though.
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Posted: Dec 12th 2010 5:46PM tororosso said

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@Jef Reahard

very poor. shame on you.
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