Friday, 17 September 2010

More Future Development of MMO's

Further to this post which I put together earlier in the week this sad news has come to light...

I've mentioned APB before, upon its release, and I noted in the report a quote from Dave "Lemmings" Jones, which says:

"I truly wish we had the chance to continue to craft APB into the vision we had for it,"

And I think this echo's tenfold into my point made in the post I made earlier in the week, these guys released a product which was not the intended vision that had for it. Basically is appears they had to ship, it shipped earlier, and though I've not heard of them I'm sure there were teething issues.

And basically, aside from the game being in a field of interest thoroughly covered by Grand Theft Auto titles (meaning this APB was going to be on the back foot from release as you don't need to keep coughing up cash to play GTA... therefore one has to wonder whether anyone involved in APB realised that unlike WOW they didn't have a unique product?).

But that as it may, it also seems that the game released was not only not quite ready for market, but it was not quite what the developers intended for us players to experience.

And I have to say, ANY title coming to market which uses this excuse again needs to be trashed, seriously trashed.

I understand that development scales are on the fist full of years side, however, beyond development these games need to be put through full and thorough testing regimes. And they need producers with balls, balls enough to stand up to market pressure and say "no, it's not ready".

I can't stress my point enough, that these people funding these games need a re-education that though with a traditional game release you make your most sales in the first few weeks is true, but with an MMO they have to realise their outlay of funding is returned over a longer period, like a mortgage, it could take tens of months, or as in the success of the mega titles out there today, in tens of years!

It's all annoying me, I don't think I'll ever see a fully tested, fully working from the box game ever again. And I've not seen one in a long time. Patches & updates are just run of the mill now. And they shouldn't be, we players and users should ask, why was it not working before you shipped it?

I'm not saying a developer should not release a patch, oh no, they are always needed at some level, but the easy going approach developers, like Blizzard, like Bioware, like 2KGames when it comes to sorting out issues grates over me.

In the case of Bioware, I speak of my personal issues getting Dragon Age to work and keep working, in the span of a week we had nothing but patches and community speculation as to the problems being encountered. And the longer things dragged on there, the worse the convoluted confused critique got a chance to take hold and so ruin my optimistic outlook of the game.


  1. How can they say that? They released the game, sold it for $50 to us. That's the game they presented us, and that should be the game they wanted us to play. To say it wasn't makes me wonder why they released it. Oh, right, because they were going bankrupt from bad management and over spending on hyping up the game. Every company needs to take the "when it's done" approach and publishers need to start to realize that it's more damaging to release an unfinished, buggy game than wait a while and finish it. It's very hard and can take years (if ever) to fix a bad reputation.

  2. Buy the Console version ... no messing with mostly unfinished games. They get patched when there are real issues but are always pretty spot on :)
    There are a few exceptions to my following statement but on a whole a pc/mac is for working, a console is for gaming!