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My Take On An Open Letter To Pgi

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#1 Malora Sidewinder

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:11 AM

PGI,

One of my teammates recently posted a thread containing many ideas that the competitive community put forth. It was long and quite an arduous read at times, but it had a lot of valid points that resonate across the competitive community as a whole. I'm confident saying this because I personally sat down with several other competitive teams, and asked for their input and opinions on the matter. This thread is my personal take on this entire situation. I'm not going to knock or bash that thread at all; it was highly accurate and took a tremendous amount of work to put forth. More credit to everyone who worked on it.

The one part of that thread that I took umbrage with, however, was that it focused a bit too hard on the raw numbers aspect of what was wrong with this game, ignoring the true source of that gross lack of synchronization between the dev team and the community;
THERE IS NO COMMUNITY LIASON
If pressed to give an opinion, I'd say that the fact that the dev team doesn't listen to the community at all, in any vein, sense, fashion, way, etc. Is the reason that the game breaks as often as it does.
You could argue that the meta is rock>paper>scizzors... but if this is true, then from time to time the rock becomes made of sidewalk chalk, and the scizzors rust over and become unusable for months at a time.


PGI, please listen to your community more. There are plenty of us with enough gaming history that we would be an invaluable asset to you in making this game better. We don't want pay or MC, we WILL WORK FOR FREE, and we're more than willing to put in a LOT of time to make this game better.

If you have proven something time and time again, it is that your internal test servers do not provide an adequate prediction of the upcoming meta when those changes reach the PUG stage.

We will gladly help you in whatever design you would want us to. Give certain volunteers access to the advanced test server, under a contract that says we will write FULL DETAILED REPORTS of our findings to you once a week or so... We'd agree to that.
Give us a VALID venue for our ideas and complaints; do not brush them under the rug under the veil of "too much negativity." Listen to us. This game is in beta, but we are not beta testers. We are guinea pigs doing no such "testing."

PGI, give certain players a direct way to communicate their findings and opinions to *you* directly. More than this, you need to be more transparent. You don't tell us anything about your daily going-ons, leaving us quite a bit flustered when you pull stunts such as shunting the Orion in favor of the previously unannounced quickdraw.

You are a dev team, meaning you are all professionals at what you do. I won't deny this. But I will be quick to point out that you clearly do not have a coherent idea of what "balance" means, at least in so far as a mechwarrior game.
I'm not trying to be rude or attack anyone, but a lot of these disastrous changes that brought nothing but *bad* changes to the game could easily have been circumvented if you had brought the idea to a series of competitive players before hand, and asked for their opinions and thoughts on the matter.

As a company, your biggest weakness is your unwillingness to communicate openly with the players of the game you have created. This needs to change.
Again, I will not call any of the members of PGI incompetent or challenge their skill/talent at developing in any way. You're using Cryengine 3, which has proven itself time and time again to be a bit of a ***** for smaller studios to use, and the fact that MWO exists at all is a testament to your ability.

But aside from that, you have proven time and time again that you will *not* listen to your player base, which *will* end up killing this game if it does not change.

as is, the game sucks. It may have enough people who play it so that you can continue stuffing your fingers in your ears and screaming "LA LA LA CANT HEAR YOU LA LA LA" but it is NOWHERE near it's potential. I loved this game months ago. Sniping/jumpsniping/scouting/boating/brawling/skirmishing/flanking were all valid tactics.

fast forward just a few patches, and what changed?
Sniping/boating are all that's left. and it sucks. SRMs need to come back with a vengeance, they've been out more than 2 months now, and you haven't communicated to your community anything at all worth reading in terms of data.

and you know what? you have no one to blame but yourselves.
This game needs a community liason, and i'm sure there are dozens of players (if not COMPETITIVE TEAMS, entire teams) that would volunteer. Let's face it, your current testers aren't doing their job.

#2 Kunae

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:16 AM

Well said.

#3 jeffsw6

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:19 AM

There was a thread before where folks were discussing some way to appoint one of us to represent the "vocal minority" PGI says we are. The thread was locked and deleted, but I am guessing that is because of other material in the thread, not the fact that players thought it might be nice if we had a representative selected by us.

So, FupDup for President?

#4 JokerVictor

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:25 AM

View Postjeffsw6, on 27 June 2013 - 11:19 AM, said:

There was a thread before where folks were discussing some way to appoint one of us to represent the "vocal minority" PGI says we are. The thread was locked and deleted, but I am guessing that is because of other material in the thread, not the fact that players thought it might be nice if we had a representative selected by us.

So, FupDup for President?


I'd actually vote for you, jeff.

Awesome OP, good read... says pretty much all there is to say.

#5 Deathlike

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:27 AM

I anticipate that this thread is headed for K-town soon.

#6 jeffsw6

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:31 AM

View PostDeathlike, on 27 June 2013 - 11:27 AM, said:

I anticipate that this thread is headed for K-town soon.

I don't think your post is constructive. Reading the "headed to K-town" and other, totally negative posts, really bums me out. I would much rather read why people disagree about balance, why they are or aren't liking some mechs, Phoenix package thoughts, etc. than just some post like, oh, this thread is doomed.

Barring that, perhaps you could edit your post to include a clever picture?

#7 General Taskeen

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:39 AM

What I enjoyed in the closed beta forums was a list of all the idea's from players they would look into and updated each idea to "being worked on" or "planning phase" etc.

#8 Deathlike

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:40 AM

View Postjeffsw6, on 27 June 2013 - 11:31 AM, said:

I don't think your post is constructive.  Reading the "headed to K-town" and other, totally negative posts, really bums me out.  I would much rather read why people disagree about balance, why they are or aren't liking some mechs, Phoenix package thoughts, etc. than just some post like, oh, this thread is doomed.


I'm sorry, I'm depressed and disappointed with this game. I wish I had a better retort.

Quote

Barring that, perhaps you could edit your post to include a clever picture?


I'm sure someone will do that effortlessly. :(

The thing is, if PGI truly had people communicating at an honest and at least amicable level, noone would have to sound so depressing or hostile.

As it is, most of the PGI members that do post on a consistent basis are inconsiderate and insincere at best.

Edited by Deathlike, 27 June 2013 - 11:43 AM.


#9 Coolant

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:47 AM

I disagree with the OP in several things, but agree 100% with a PGI spokesperson, one that is their profession, they have experience doing it on a large public scale. Tidbits that get misinterpreted, or announcements on things that are overwhelming are the norm when coming from different staff. I appreciate any communication at all, but all communication should be funneled thru a professional spokesperson who can articulate exactly what should be said and what shouldn't and is easily accessible.

#10 jeffsw6

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:47 AM

I'm with you, Deathlike, the game is so disappointing that I haven't played for weeks except when the other game I started playing is down for maintenance.

I would love to have our own "community spokesperson" who isn't someone that works for PGI/IGP. I think it would benefit PGI, because maybe they'd get more clued-in on balance issues; and if it did, then it would benefit us by improving the game.

So again, FupDup for President?

#11 Deathlike

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:52 AM

View Postjeffsw6, on 27 June 2013 - 11:47 AM, said:

So again, FupDup for President?


Poll, anyone? :(

SRS BUSINESS!

#12 jeffsw6

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:54 AM

View PostCoolant, on 27 June 2013 - 11:47 AM, said:

I disagree with the OP in several things, but agree 100% with a PGI spokesperson, one that is their profession, they have experience doing it on a large public scale.

Garth already is their spokesman. His job is community whatever. Forum, facebook, etc. Hell, I bet Garth still logs onto myspace, because there might be some MW:O players there. Okay, perhaps myspace is a stretch...

Point being, they have someone whose job is to do what you described.

#13 Kunae

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:04 PM

View Postjeffsw6, on 27 June 2013 - 11:54 AM, said:

Garth already is their spokesman. His job is community whatever. Forum, facebook, etc. Hell, I bet Garth still logs onto myspace, because there might be some MW:O players there. Okay, perhaps myspace is a stretch...

Point being, they have someone whose job is to do what you described.

They don't let him do his job. That is the problem.

#14 Malora Sidewinder

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:06 PM

View Postjeffsw6, on 27 June 2013 - 11:54 AM, said:

Garth already is their spokesman. His job is community whatever. Forum, facebook, etc. Hell, I bet Garth still logs onto myspace, because there might be some MW:O players there. Okay, perhaps myspace is a stretch...

Point being, they have someone whose job is to do what you described.

Well then he's not doing his job. In the OP i was suggesting something a bit different than what Garth currently does (largely nothing, certainly nothing constructive) in the form that an entire vein of competitive players be put on a sort of consultation team.

Say one person from each competitive team with at least 50 (random number) players. Let them have a DIRECT communication line to Garth himself. Give feedback where it's necessary, get varied opinions, and make Garth's job much much easier. It can only help the health of the game, unless all competitive players *and* the devs are horribly wrong simultaneously.

It would be set up almost as a pseudo republic; each team would have a head that spoke on behalf of their general opinions. To keep it simple, each team regardless of players would ideally only have a single representative. To keep things even more fair, each representative should have no real power... their only job would be take ideas from the devs, convey them to their teams and farm opinions and counter ideas, and then give a summarized version BACK to the devs to work with.

Currently what we have is horribly inefficient. they make changes that break things much much worse than what they fix (if they even fix anything to begin with, which is rare) and then leave us to QQ massively on the forums, and then they proceed to persistently and energetically IGNORE our complains.

Off the top of my head, this would have prevented LRM golden showers, ECM QQ, PPCs being the most overused weapon in the game, and jump snipers wouldn't have gotten to the point where they needed to be beaten with the nerfstick until they stopped twitching. For the future, i can only imagine how many problems it would actually prevent. I firmly believe that this liason needs to happen in some form or another; i've given my opinions on the most efficient way i can think of, but if others have better ideas please feel free to submit.

i can't stress enough how necessary this idea is for the health of MWO.

Edited by Malora Sidewinder, 27 June 2013 - 12:08 PM.


#15 jeffsw6

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:13 PM

I thought public test server was necessary to the health of MW:O. Wait, where is the promised public test server?

#16 jakucha

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:16 PM

View Postjeffsw6, on 27 June 2013 - 12:13 PM, said:

I thought public test server was necessary to the health of MW:O. Wait, where is the promised public test server?


I remember a month ago they said it would be scheduled in 1 to 2 months, so probably next month.

#17 Kunae

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:16 PM

Posted Image
You're playing on it now... right?

Edited by Kunae, 27 June 2013 - 12:18 PM.


#18 jakucha

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:16 PM

View PostKunae, on 27 June 2013 - 12:16 PM, said:

Posted Image
You're playing on it now... right?


They're actually adding a server they can make quick testing changes to is what he's talking about, so they won't affect the main community if it's bugged or bad.

Edited by jakucha, 27 June 2013 - 12:17 PM.


#19 Kunae

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:18 PM

View Postjakucha, on 27 June 2013 - 12:16 PM, said:


They're actually adding a server they can make quick testing changes to is what he's talking about, so they won't affect the main community if it's bugged or bad.

I know what he was talking about. Just reiterating the irony of having a separate "test server" in a "beta test". :(

#20 Syllogy

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 12:19 PM

Just because they don't acknowledge you doesn't mean they aren't listening.





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