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Reader Comments (41)

Posted: Jul 11th 2011 9:58AM Daverator said

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Didn't they lose their source code pre launch?
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Posted: Jul 10th 2011 1:21PM Palebane said

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Actually, I don't think the APB NDA was ever officially lifted. They did have open beta, but there was an NDA for that, if I remember correctly.
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Posted: Jul 10th 2011 10:12AM eyeball2452 said

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NDAs create negative impression of the game. They're basically like taking the 5th. You may not be guilty, but you're hiding something of importance to the preceding.

After having seen MMO developers like AoC, TR, WAR, etc all hide behind NDAs and in the end, put out mediocre products, I assume the worst. I've been burnt out on WoW for a long time and don't think nearly as highly of blizzard as I used to, but what I will say, they generally don't hide behind NDAs. Love 'em or hate 'em, they polish the games and it's very clear what you're getting into before you buy one of their games.

The recent exception was Trion and Rift. I got into beta 6 ... while not a true OB, it was pretty easy to grab a key from Massively. This allowed me to play the game, see the polish and in turn lead to a box sale that they otherwise wouldn't have gotten. Now, I only played for 2.5 months, but rift was one of the few MMOs that I actually enjoyed and would recommend people actually try.

Lastly, the longer Bioware keeps up their NDA and EA hypes a game that no one can talk about, the more worried I become. I love Bioware games, but I wonder after years of development and supposedly 6 months away from launch, what they're hiding. The previews that people ave been posting (

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 11:20AM hexaemeron said

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NDAs into Open Beta = Sucky Game.

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 11:30AM Furdinand said

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Is it a situation where they are going to make a big change and they don't want the bloggers to start releasing details before Mythic rolls out their official messaging, but they do want the blogger to be up to speed and not have to play catch up when the official messaging starts?

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 8:22PM (Unverified) said

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@Furdinand "they don't want the bloggers to start releasing details before Mythic rolls out their official messaging, but they do want the blogger to be up to speed and not have to play catch up when the official messaging starts?"

That's pretty close and, humorously, is what happens with sites like Massively with news content. It's called a "News Embargo".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/News_embargo

The difference is, BioWare-Mythic has always treated their bloggers like they would any other news outlet; whether by mailing them curious objects with riddles attached to promote in-game events, by inviting them out to do exclusive interviews, or by showing them soon-to-be-announced content. It's something a lot of other studios are doing now as well and I hope that trend continues as it allows for a much broader range of coverage than just sticking to the "usual" news sites.

In this case in particular, I can honestly say (and have on the forums) that the problem lies with us bloggers. We were the ones that said we were going to see something new.

Our bad.

We were excited. We're gamers. It happens. The difference seems to be that while it's ok for Dr. Ray to tweet about playing something new from BioWare-Mythic (June 30th), when bloggers do it we get everyone mad. As gamers, we should be HAPPY when studios allow us to play new stuff instead of just the "usual" news sites. Instead, it seems to become a source of negativity...which makes me a /sadpanda.

~Gaar

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Posted: Jul 10th 2011 11:36AM ErikC said

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I'm not sure I understand how NDA's are ever particularly beneficial to the development process. Other companies still know about other people's games once they've entered anything resembling a public-ish beta, even when they are NDA. Really the only thing they assist with is the ability to control marketing of the game, which is another way of saying "lying."

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 12:41PM Deadalon said

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@ErikC

Lets put it this way. Why you think FUncom did not lift NDA of AOC ? Because DX10 was so great? Or because it wasn't in the game at all?
And maybe it was because beta testers experienced some of the worst ever developer work ever seen. Including a whole map accidentaly beein filled up with huge mountain by some sloppy renderer.... and it went live....

Most likely the stuff these ppl saw at Mythic was just buggy and crappy as hell and so lacking. Thats defenetly my bet. The only good thing that might be worth NDA at Mythic is the donuts recepie.
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Posted: Jul 10th 2011 12:36PM Deadalon said

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NDA is not there to prevent ppl to talk about good things. Its to prevent the junk to be published that might bring negative reaction from fans.

Lets put it this way. What these ppl were told was "we are aiming for this and this but it might change. We have not implemented or tested anything but it will look like that.. maybe."

WAR is a game that has not delevered 1 thing right since LOD and less and less ppl are bothered with a cluncy and laggy game mecanics - zergs and totally pointless capture of the same stuff over and over and over again... NDA will not change that. Its gonna be just the same.

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 12:45PM HiroProtagonist7 said

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NDA's - Non-Disclosure Agreements - are standard practice across all businesses.

Employees take them on the way in and are generally bound by them for a few years after leaving. Anyone involved in a project that isn't an employee gets one before contracting on. I'm a consultant and have them signed for banks, country clubs and a little auto glass repair business. Heck - even the church I service asked me to sign one.

They're not about lying or deception. They're about a company putting up boundaries and staking their claim so they have a case in court if anything happens.

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 1:06PM (Unverified) said

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Secrecy is always bad, thus, NDA's are always bad.

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 3:32PM Saker said

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@(Unverified) Agree! If you've got secrets it's probably something bad.
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Posted: Jul 10th 2011 2:03PM NeverDeath said

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What I think is that Warhammer Online is in a position where, if anything they're planning is something good at all, they cannot afford to keep it under wraps one second longer than they have. People have given up on the game, on its future and have largely succumbed to the idea that Bioware-Mythic have been running it on maintenance mode for a long time now. Given that there haven't been any substantial updates to their website in about a year, and that their patches have features little but balance changes and a weird siege mechanic since the last time the game got actual new content (Land of the Dead was 2 years ago, now)... It would be hard to disagree with those people.

The game still has the potential to do better than it's been doing, but it would require a development team that is willing to put forth the effort to turn the ship around. Sure, it's unlikely it could ever become something huge or a strong contender in the market, but it could certainly take a big leap forward and cleanse itself of the "most disappointing MMO with the most unrealized potential on the market" title that it's definitely earned in the eyes of many, myself included. There are changes that could be made that would almost guarantee growth and returning players, because I know a lot of people like myself who still say "Man I miss Warhammer sometimes... But the developers gave up on it and it seems like the game has no future and still has too many rough edges. I wish they'd fix it so I could play it again but as it stands, it's a waste of money on a dead-end title".

I have gone back and re-subbed about 6 times since launch, and every time I do I am reminded of why I left. The list is long, so to narrow it down I will use generalizations such as to say, a terribly non-optimized client (it doesn't run as smoothly as it should, regardless of the computer in question), a lot of rough edges (teleporting/tethering NPCs, NPCs who run away at full speed when you crawl at low health, getting stuck in the geometry with a lack of viable unstuck feature and often times the engine gives you a jillion fall damage and kills you for jumping on a knee-high fence that was for some reason impassable, severe class balance issues) and some poor design choices (flawed looting system for bags, bugged/poorly itemized PQs which therefore offer no incentive to ever do them, features taken from RvR that made it better in the past).

If they wanted players to come back, they would have to fix things from a technical aspect, and also provide players with content. It's a PvP game with a dearth of PvP content. It's only had one major update that announced new content to the game, and it was PVE content! I thought Bioware was supposed to be a great development studio capable of great things? It looks to me like they have either said "Screw this game and the people waiting for it to become worthwhile so they can enjoy it, it's not worth the effort", or they aren't up to the task because even they cannot fix what Mythic botched so horribly. Either way, it makes them look like shit to have their name all over a game that's just rotting, languishing and slowly spiraling downward until there's nobody left. It's an RvR game, when the player population is this low, its enjoyability is stricken along with it.

I hope they do something before it's too late and the last of the hardcore veterans (who are mostly frustrated now or have quit, as it is) decide to quit and the game truly dies.

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 2:23PM Zuljundwumn said

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Warhammer online doesn't need any advertising, it has a strong community and a solid base of subscribers.

...

-Insert laughtrack here-

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 4:24PM MMOaddict said

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After seeing ArcheAge closed Beta videos and being impressed with the sheer "open" quality of that game, and how people aren't griping about it but hyping it up and getting excited for it. I have come to the conclusion that NDA's are just dumb. It's pretty simple. Don't put into testing what you don't want the public to see. Real simple.

Although...I guess it depends on the game, like SWTOR. You obviously don't want story spoilers out there just yet, so I guess an NDA in that situation makes sense. But WAR never needed an NDA, nor did STO, or CO, or AoC, or various other MMOs that don't focus on story as much.

Posted: Jul 10th 2011 4:37PM Xpander said

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all current WAR subscribers get into SWTOR closed Beta...thats the NDA probably....tho i have no clue :D
hope its something good for WAR..i wanna return to the game... forts are coming back with patch 1.4.5 i heard...so lets wait and see :)

Posted: Jul 11th 2011 1:07AM (Unverified) said

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I remember 'signing' a NDA for Rifts early Beta which was laughable and long before that a NDA for FF14. Then I found out they had a even more internal Alpha running throughout the entire Beta with a small group of people without all the restrictions of the Beta which made me scratch my head even more. In the end I don't obey the NDA and post things or tell people shit anyway. Honestly NDA's do nothing but hurt a game unless they have something bad to hide (such as how terrible FF14 was).

Posted: Jul 11th 2011 6:02AM Fabius Bile said

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I suppose NDAs are handy when it comes to closed testing phases, you dont want the public to hear about critics on stuff you are fully willing to polish, change or even remove per request.

now, a PR stunt to have an NDA is...insane, illogical, retarded...

but its Mythic we'r talking here, nothing they can do surprises me at all at this point, they are Grand Masters at shooting themselves in the foot in the most ass backwards manner

Posted: Jul 11th 2011 9:24AM Vegetta said

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For an existing game - especially an existing game that is floundering like WAR is I would think they would want to release as much information as humanly possible.

Posted: Jul 11th 2011 9:32AM cored said

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Unless the game is somehow revolutionary, NDA's are more for the investor's and people with the suits' peace of mind than any real need for secrecy.

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