Secret World Legends beta leaks show a vastly changed game [Updated]

Funcom has issued a statement about the leaks; we’ve included it in its entirety at the end of this post.

For those assuming that Secret World Legends will be only slightly different from the existing MMO, it may be best to rip off that band-aid early to get used to the truth. While the game is currently under NDA in closed beta, that doesn’t stop information from leaking out that appears to show a vastly changed title in the making.

On the new Secret Worlds Legends subreddit, a beta tester has unloaded a ton of information and screenshots that mostly center on the action-RPG’s combat system. With the understanding that this is beta and all may be changed, the tester claims to shows how the different combat weapons have been streamlined and modified (for example, shotguns now have different types of shells that perform various tasks and assault rifles have grenades). The tester notes that most classes should self-heal now as in most other MMOs. Players will use a reticle system for combat and will need to worry about overheating at least some of their weapons.

Other changes noted include an Agartha that has a lounge area, auction house, and jump pads that take you to different portals. It’s also mentioned that investigation missions have been streamlined somewhat so that using a browser isn’t always necessary to complete them.

View post on imgur.com

We stress that none of this information has been confirmed as accurate by an official source as indeed it comes from an anonymous leak on Reddit from someone who appears to be breaking his or her NDA to deliver it. We will update when we know more, but for now, treat it all as rumor.

Source: Reddit

Update 1:20 p.m. EDT: Funcom’s Romain Amiel has issued a statement to Massively OP suggesting that not everything in the leak is accurate or permanent and asking that players and press have patience with the studio while it tests and tweaks the very much in-progress game. We’ve included it below in its entirety:

The problem with a leak like this isn’t “people finding out about how the game is going to be”. It’s quite the opposite: it’s still in development, it’s not ready for that kind of scrutiny, and that leads to misunderstandings and misconceptions that are doing nothing but a disservice to the game, the team working on it, and future players.

The Closed Beta is under NDA as we are still doing changes, additions, tweaks, and improvements for what will be in the release version. Nothing is set in stone yet and many of the details here are still in development and were planned to be made ready to test for future beta updates.

There is too much here to address individually, but one example of misinformation is the idea of the investigation missions having changed: they haven’t. We added one investigation mission tutorial. Combat is another thing we’re heavily focused on right now. Only a few weapons are currently available in the beta, to give everyone a chance to give feedback, to make sure each feels fun and balanced. For example, the information released about Blood is invalid, since the weapon isn’t currently available on the beta servers.

We have always made sure press and influencers have access to pre-launch betas so that they can report from our games before they release. We will do the same for Secret World Legends, but need the chance to polish the silverware, put up the lights, and sweep the floors before we lift the NDA and open for everyone to evaluate the game and judge us on what we’re delivering.

I should also mention that we’re doing another edition of our biweekly developer stream tomorrow, April 7, on Twitch.tv/Funcom in case anyone wants to tune in! We’ll be discussing more about Secret World Legends, specifically about the content that we feel is ready to talk about. :)

We’d like to thank Funcom for addressing the leak and quelling some of our readers’ worst fears. We’ll set our Secret World columnist loose in the game just as soon as the flag drops.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE

LEAVE A COMMENT

248 Comments on "Secret World Legends beta leaks show a vastly changed game [Updated]"

Subscribe to:
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most liked
Reader
Kevin McCaughey

I have to say I am really looking forward to this. I like Funcom as a company and have a long history of gaming with them going right back to their superb point and click adventures.

I am really hoping it works out for them – they are some of the good guys in gaming. I will definitely be playing SWL on release. I only got as far as the Blue Mountains before, mostly due to the combat system, which just always felt really disconnected. Here’s hoping they made good changes. I loved the mysteries/quests.

Reader
Bango on Laurelin

This is why closed betas that are publicly announced don’t work.

Reader
Anthony Clark

Ooooo Looks good.

I want in this beta bad!

Reader
CloakingDonkey .

well if that bit about the investigation missions is true, then that’s that for me. That’s literally the only innovative bit in the whole game. I’m not interested in yet another shitty action MMO… there’s already too many of them and they all suck.

Reader
Zynoviya Cyberlight

I think I might be the target audience for this. Back in the day I never got past Blue Mountain – the combat was just above my general skill level and never as interesting to me as the story. I’d always thought I’d prefer the game as a single-player RPG.

Reader
Kevin McCaughey

Yes I think I am the same demographic. Also quit at blue mountains and could never get my head round the combat.

Reader
StonerMk2

Aye i think im in that general audience as well. I love the game and the lore, but the combat system and the skills were/are just well above me. I just wanted to play the story as a singleplayer RPG, but honestly i wish most MMO’s were like that…im not a very social gamer.

django857
Reader
django857

The combat system is so going to make or break this game for good this time. They need to come up with something amazing and so far in Funcoms history they always screw this up.

Reader
CasualSlacks

No matter what happens, I’m going to play it. It just doesn’t matter much to me what happens between now and then. I’ll just think about something else.

Reader
SWLegend

You thought they were your friends and you still believe season 2 is coming for SWL.

giphy (13).gif
Reader
Roger Melly

I doubt it will happen but I have been wondering given this will no longer be an mmo if it will have different difficulty settings . I loved the game before they streamlined it a couple of years ago but after that I just couldn’t get into it again .

Reader
Oleg Chebeneev

Here on russian MMO forum we have beta testers too and they say exact opposite – SW Legends has the same gameplay as TSW with abit different combat and lame new tutorial that everyone hates. Other then that not much changed

Reader
TomTurtle

I’m looking forward to trying out the combat changes.
I was never enthused about the investigation missions, not my type of puzzle solving so if they’ve been made more easier and/or intuitive, I’m down for it.

I do feel for the players who liked the original TSW. For me, if this isn’t fun to play, it won’t change much of anything for me: I’d continue to not play. For those who liked it? Well, they won’t lose the original, but they lose development for it from now on.

Reader
Leiloni

Also I wonder if the deck outfits will be the same this time around? Or at least I hope we can get a look at them before creating a character. I might have to choose a faction based on who has the best outfits…

Ugh it’s hard cause I love the Illuminati’s story/theme but the Templar’s outfits are so much better. :(

Reader
Greaterdivinity

Yeah, I’m sorta in the same boat. I’m set because I love the Templar’s themes/story and outfits (yay!) and want to get that back…but at the same time I’ve been really curious about the Illuminati story-wise and a bit curious thematically, even if I’m not a big fan of the deck outfits.

Super torn on whether to stick with what I know I like, but not get anything different, or take a gamble on something that’s at least a bit new, even if I end up not liking it too much.

MJ Guthrie
Staff
MJ Guthrie

When asking about the deck outfits I was pretty clear that Puritan had better still be there!! =P

Reader
Geoffrey Smith

I am in the same boat! Much prefer the Illumnati story and theme, but greatly prefered both the Templar and Dragon outfits.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I’d put money on these being cross-faction now.

Reader
Leiloni

O.o You think so? That might be awesome. Or it might ruin the faction immersion to see people wearing opposite faction’s outfits. I can’t decide.

Reader
ogged451

The current live game has a “Faction” column in the cabal list since release.
Such a column only makes sense if at some point the developers intended to go cross faction. (Then someone decided against it and everybody forgot to remove the useless column)

Reader
Leiloni

Maybe we’ll get lucky and the 5 skill limit will change in beta testing back up to an 8 skill limit.

*wink, wink.* *nudge, nudge* HEY ROMAIN

Crow
Reader
Crow

Actually, if this is a move toward making TSW a more controller-friendly game I may even play more.

But honestly non-Sandboxes just don’t do it for me anymore. My partner and I spent the last two nights just prepping for a big ARK excursion and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Reader
Leiloni

There have been games that use controllers and have far more skills than 5. So making it 8 isn’t going to be some huge hardship for console users. All it does is make combat less fun for everyone.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I’ll just say that I play a lot of games that have me running commands through 2-3 different programs before they execute. I use xpadder and voicemacro, often in step with each other so xpadder sends a single context push to voicemacro which executes. That is how my D-Pad becomes a context-beast. In many cases I also run stuff via voice commands, so I don’t need to find a binding on every combo.

FSX is the worst for this. Elite is actually the best. Oolite is the worst.

Reader
BalsBigBrother

I couldn’t play ED without my controller and voice attack (plus HCS voice packs) :-)

Crow
Reader
Crow

“Computer, engage hyperdrive” is the best. Also, can we get your shader? I’ve been wanting that forever!

Reader
BalsBigBrother

Shader for E:D ? I don’t use one because when I tried it tanked my fps badly. The only thing I have done with E:D is make some adjustments to config files to improve the Ultra setting a little. That way I get some nice pretties and still keep a solid 60 fps (or 55 ish on planets) :-)

If you like using VA look up something called EDDI its a plugin that can be used to add some extra things to the game and provide additional voice feedback. It can be set up to give you systems descriptions as you jump to them or planet description on scan plus other stuff that might be of interest.

Reader
Nordavind

Tangent: It’s always.. hmm, weighing my words here, interesting to observe how fans of [anything] can turn on what they used to love due to change(s) they don’t like.

Reader
Skyler Groshong

Wait wait wait…

1. Person 1 serves person 2 a large scoop of their favorite ice cream.
2. Person 2 takes a bite of their favorite Ice Cream. Yum! It’s fantastic!
3. Person 1 casually walks over and takes a huge steamy dump on said scoop of ice cream.
4. Person 2…. what?… thanks Person 1 for all their hard work?! Is that how you think it should go?!

… or did I miss something and you are just commenting on people acting completely rationally.

Reader
Nordavind

Read below.

Reader
CloakingDonkey .

I don’t think that’s weird at all.. I have like 10 hours a week tops to play games for just my enjoyment. I’m not going to waste them on things I don’t like. If their changes make it something I don’t like, why should I waste my time with it?

Crow
Reader
Crow

Don’t blame the people who have been giving Funcom a benefit of doubt for now years. We can both have hope and have that hope dashed at the same time. That is what makes us human.

Reader
Nordavind

I’m not judging, simply observing. People watching, IRL and online, is a hobby of mine.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I’m such a people watcher. Helped that I was a working poet for years and years so watching people was part of the work.

I still remember how I did exercises in a Starbucks…

Holding that child
Like she’d fall or break herself,
Your latte is ready.

Extra beat there but it is worse without it.

Reader
Schlag Sweetleaf

comment image

Reader
Tanek

Yeah, but there are a good number also saying they will wait and see or give it a chance. The majority of extreme negativity seems to be concentrated. No matter how many comments and replies someone can make.

Beta still has more time, more players will get in and give feedback, more information will be announced from Funcom. And we will see where it goes.

Reader
Sally Bowls

True. Although the fickle mob can also turn on something if it does not change enough.

Reader
Rottenrotny

Having worked for a major AAA game dev/pub previously, I can confirm that beta typically = feature complete.
If he’s seeing shotguns with different ammo and assault rifles with grenades then that’s what’s going to be in the live version.
Beta is for squashing bugs not changing the game features completely.
I’m just worried that the cool parts of the game systems, skill wheel I’m looking at you, are going to be axed to dumb the game down for mass consumption.

-=Edit=- Oof, looks like the skill wheel got axed…

Crow
Reader
Crow

When I suggested they’d do away with the skill wheel I was mostly laughed off.

I just don’t know where to go from here. The game is complete and the NDA is bullshit. I’ll never get in after this, but if I did I’d probably like like hell for a beta for a game that had five damn years under release belt.

Reader
Nordavind

You’re looking at this from a new game perspective. It’s not. Also, knowing Funcom, and how they worked with us players giving feedback at the testlive servers they had for TSW, they are fully able to change features completely.

Reader
Rottenrotny

Sure, it’s not like the alpha/beta rules are set in stone and no dev can deviate. I’m just offering my observations on what’s sort of the industry standard.
But who knows with those crazy Norwegians?!

Reader
Melissa McDonald

Norway has produced gods.

6540ebc6ea1133a6cc0e8e6eb1e1e699.jpg
Reader
Bruno Brito

Kamelot’s last vocalist?

Not that i hate the new one, it’s the Seventh Wonder’s vocalist, and he’s great, but the last one was just godlike.

The Black Halo is just a heavenly album.

Reader
Melissa McDonald

yes Roy Khan. One of the great rock tenors of all time. And yes, Tommy Karevik is quite good too, but he’s become a clone Khan. Didn’t see that coming. Kamelot is protecting their “brand”. And Tommy is Swedish ;)

Reader
Bruno Brito

Honestly, let Karevik become a clone. Kamelot has a brand and a voice, he has to match that.

He can be an awesome progressive vocal on SW. Kamelot is something else.

Crow
Reader
Crow

comment image

Reader
Leiloni

This guy looks like he belongs in The Secret World as some sort of dark mage. He’ll fit right in.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I think my goth-y partner would probably know who this is. I’ll ask later.

Reader
Rottenrotny

Kamelot?

Reader
BalsBigBrother

Is he UnKhained ?

Crow
Reader
Crow

Her. Unchained!

Reader
luxundae

I feel like this info ends up being a rorschach test for readers’ overall feelings on Funcom.

Going to withhold judgment for a little while…

Reader
Tobasco da Gama

As usual, with pre-release news.

I’m not going to develop an opinion until I get to play it for myself.

Reader
Melissa McDonald

“reticle system” means there is always a crosshairs on screen then? (if that’s what it means – How ironic -same thing happened with the NGE in Galaxies. )

Reader
Ailsa Nordstrom

If only that was where the changes ended. My chosen class in SWG just disappeared entirely:-(

Reader
Melissa McDonald

yes and mine turned into a music box dancer. Sigh!

Crow
Reader
Crow

Hold me closer, Tony Danza?

Reader
Melissa McDonald

get a room, you two :P

Reader
jay

So something I’m confused about… with the whole reboot. How much of the game will actually be multi player? Is it going to be like the new FPS games where you can play it 100% solo, but if you feel like you can invite a friend for CO-OP?

Or will I actually see other people running around while I’m out solving mysteries?

Reader
Schmidt.Capela

I think I read somewhere that most solo missions were being tweaked to allow groups, except for a few whose mechanic simply doesn’t work with multiple players.

Also, the limit of players per open world instance (zone?) is being lowered (from 60 to 10, I believe), except for open world bosses and other similar special encounters.

Reader
Tanek

From what has been said, you can still see other players running around, but with the player cap in most quest zones being lower, it may be less frequent.

Reader
Rottenrotny

I barely see anyone as it is… gah

Reader
Geoffrey Smith

It’s almost a minor miracle now when I see someone outside Agartha/Kingsmouth.

Reader
jay

The more I hear, the more I don’t like =( When i heard they were redoing the combat I was all in, ready to give them my money. Now i’m all pretty much out, and ready to just avoid it.

Reader
ogged451

“Nothing is set in stone yet” seriously, your investor report gave you a Q2 deadline. If you start re-inventing things in a project of this scale with 2.5 months to go, you’re doomed.

Reader
Leiloni

They wouldn’t be reinventing things but it’s common to make changes to skills for example, or tweak some other system. That’s what testing phases are for.

Crow
Reader
Crow

This is far more akin to FFXIV’s relaunch at 2.0 than a few tweaks.

Crow
Reader
Crow

This is one of the most astute comments I have ever read at MOP.

This isn’t being set up for success. I actually think this is being created as an excuse to shut down all the MMORPGs. I can’t say at all for certain, but I think all the live games (AO/AoC/TSW) will be gone in a few years at most.

Reader
silverlock

A lot of these points are tweaks not redo’s.

Reader
Dug From The Earth

Whew… and I was worried that I wasnt going to be able to play this on my PS4….

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Hah! <3

Reader
Tobasco da Gama

Well, that’s the problem with a closed beta, right? Malicious individuals are free to say whatever they damned well please, and people who know better can’t correct them without breaking NDA.

I will say, though, that MassivelyOP is under no obligation to repeat this stuff without verification. And, indeed, not repeating unverified leaks is one of the bigger responsibilities of a legitimate news site.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

Its almost like the NDA is the problem and does nothing but sabotage Funcom.

Nah, it couldnt be that, corporations are flawless and never to be questioned.

Reader
Tobasco da Gama

You only get one chance to make a first impression. That’s what the NDA is about. They’re not ready to reveal the game to the world because it’s still being refined.

Honestly, we as gamers should be encouraging the existence of REAL, ACTUAL beta programs that REALLY, ACTUALLY occur early enough in the development cycle to take player feedback into account. But, because people are used to fake betas that are just free trials by another name, honest devs are punished and have to protect themselves with NDAs instead.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I dunno. I agree with this but asking players to treat a game that has been released for five years as a new thing is just… it doesn’t work.

Reader
Tobasco da Gama

That much is something I can agree with, for sure.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I’m honestly not sure what sort of moral obligation MMORPG gamers have to keep secret the test development of an MMORPG that is being rapidly and suddenly un-MMORPGified. I feel like the context here makes this a little bit different from, say, dumping on an indie MMORPG that isn’t out for another few years.

Reader
Tanek

Interesting, in context.

Crow
Reader
Crow

It isn’t “interesting”. This kind of stuff is base case-law being worked out as we speak.

Reader
Tandor

Why would it come down to whether they have a moral obligation? They signed a contract. If they didn’t want to accept its terms they shouldn’t have signed it.

Now we’re given to understand that no verification was made beforehand on the accuracy of these supposed leaks and that they were at least in significant part false.

On reflection, wouldn’t it have been better to have reported the story about the leak, and kept the detailed information back until the verification angle was confirmed once Funcom had got back to you (or failed to do so)?

Reader
Serrenity

Also – you have to consider embargo of information. It’s a fair assumption that MassivelyOP is privy to information that they can’t share because of that embargo and could probably have confirmed or denied the validity of some of the claims … but not without violating the terms of the embargo. So by reporting on the leak and the claims made by the leak without claims to the validity (either for or against) of the information contained therein, they probably avoided any specifics on the embargo of the information. That is, until Funcom responded.

Or – they might not be under embargo at all.

Moral of the story is that there’s always more to the story than just the end bits that you see.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Because contract law is a moral concern? Endstop. At least it is an amoral system designed to be inherently compatible with questioning morality.

Reader
Tobasco da Gama

Maybe if Funcom were keeping said un-MMORPGification secret, sure. But they outright told everybody they’d be moving to an ARPG model.

Yes, people are right to be curious about what that actually means, but it’s not exactly Brutus in the Forum.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Yeah, I guess what I was arguing with was the idea that we “as gamers” should band together here to support the idea of beta tests or NDAs. I don’t think that MMORPG players are really on the same side as other gamers in this particular case.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

even when it comes to regular games, I’m against review embargos too

Reader
Bruno Brito

““Nothing is set in stone yet” seriously, your investor report gave you a Q2 deadline. If you start re-inventing things in a project of this scale with 2.5 months to go, you’re doomed.”

Above post.

FC isn’t reinventing the wheel. Stuff may be under test and can change, BUT, they won’t change stuff to the other end of the spectrum. That’s the point. While most of these leaks can come with inaccuracies, they aren’t at all completely innacurate.

Crow
Reader
Crow

When they’re at a massive beta it isn’t to change things at all. In no way. They’re looking at stress tests and bugs. The game is complete and will not change.

Reader
drzaius

Are you a game director or a software developer (?) cause you comment like you know what you’re talking about, but I don’t think you do…

Crow
Reader
Crow

Most Game Devs’ biggest sin is thinking they can approach dev like a player. Most failed projects fail because they lack a proper person who can guide the business of profit/loss.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

yeah guys, critics are completely invalid unless theyre running an MMO, thats why nobody listens to any of the writers on this site.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I do general startup/tech planning via my consulting. I’m in the process of taking primary from our older, retiring primary and a part of that is a re-focus on internet/games stuffs.

Crow
Reader
Crow

We have a lot of people who still think this means that FC will do MMORPG stuffs. To be honest, this is such a slap to a site like MOP who supported TSW through and through.

Crow
Reader
Crow

They had 5 years to get things right, and suddenly re-configuring the game to not appeal to their lifetime subs… they’re too concerned with the fallout to focus on moving forward.

Crow
Reader
Crow

You’ve got it. First person in any MOP thread I’ve ever seen nail the actual problem so quickly.

styopa
Reader
styopa

My tinfoil hat theory would be that such ‘leaks’ would hypothetically be a perfect way to trial-balloon ideas without it seeming too much that these these are/were locked into the product. Float ’em, see the community react, review, change, rinse, repeat.

I’m not saying that I *know* that other gaming companies not in the MMO space have done such tricksy things before, because that would be inappropriate.

But I’m just sayin’.

Reader
silverlock

I’d give that a very low possibility. They should have enough people in the CB to figure out that stuff without risking poisoning the well.

Crow
Reader
Crow

They already poisoned the well. Five years of a core playerbase is going goodbye as they chase the same demo as likes Conan Exiles. That’s their issue and is also why Blizzard is so successful: One demo at a time.

Crow
Reader
Crow

You’re absolutely right. This isn’t tinfoil at all.

Reader
CMDR Maric

Perfect response by Funcom. People who leak info when under NDA are asses. Especially for a F2P game where the user can bow out without losing a cent if they don’t like the end product.

Reader
Leiloni

As much as I enjoy reading these leaks, I have to agree with this. NDA’s exist for a reason and they should not be broken. The company is not yet ready to show the product because it’s not final, so respect them enough to allow them to work on it in private and show it to us when they’re ready.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

See, me, i think the real assholes are people who are so devoted to precious victimized, so so fragile corporations and their NDAs that theyd rather let the consumer waste their time and or money on a shit product.

Crow
Reader
Crow

If this were a new game I’d have some faith. It isn’t. This is a game that has been out for 5 years and is now being put into a special new kind of “beta”.

Reader
Darthbawl

Nice to see such passion over a game from people in here, but dang, some of you need to push yourself away from the keyboard/touchscreen for a few minutes and like go outside and enjoy nature or something. :P

Reader
Nathan Aldana

I’m playing world of warcraft or persona as we wpeak. doesnt mean I cant look in on a topic on massively while “m enjoying my hobbies :P.

also. nature is boring to me :P. Now if I got to drive into the big city and see a museum of art, or visit a nice independently owned deli, that I’d be all over

Crow
Reader
Crow

some of you need to push yourself away from the keyboard/touchscreen for a few minutes and like go outside and enjoy nature or something. :P

I think you’ll find most of the commentors here have a wide range of non-game hobbies. Happens when your average age is higher than 30 or so.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I remember when MJ was discussing this overhaul I suggested they’d get rid of the ability wheel and people thought I was crazy. Turns out that is exactly what happened.

There is nothing here that makes me want to log in. In fact, most of it makes me way to stay far away.

Reader
rafael12104

Thank you Mr. Amiel.

As I began to read through the initial posting, I let myself get swept away. Good to temper expectations. Like all true testing periods some things are included to test other things and not necessarily with any expectation that they will remain.

Message received although it may be too late to stop the subreddit mob from making conclusions and proclamations. Lol.

The more and more I hear from Funcom, the more I believe that they are a model studio and game developer.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

Odd. the more I hear from them the more I smell a rat.

xpsync
Reader
xpsync

As long as the atmosphere remains unchanged, I’ll be fine.

Reader
Armsman

From the Funcom statement:

The problem with a leak like this isn’t “people finding out about how the game is going to be”. It’s quite the opposite: it’s still in development, it’s not ready for that kind of scrutiny, and that leads to misunderstandings and misconceptions that are doing nothing but a disservice to the game, the team working on it, and future players.

Oh please…Beta usually equals ‘feature complete’ – so if they ARE planning to make further major changes/add more systems/etc. why are they doing a closed beta at this point? Are they really trying to do that much a disservice to people’s intelligence?

They really want to try and claim: “Yes, we’re rebooting from scratchand doing a wipe…but it’s STILL basically the same game as before…” — LOL!

I can’t wait for their next major game announcement that probably involves transferring/folding what’s left of their “Age of Conan” playerbase onto “Cinan Exiles” again claiming – “Hey, it’s basically the same game…”

TLDR: TSW didn’t fail due to “MMO Fatigue” it failed due to poor decisions and project mismanagement by FUNCOM.

Reader
kgptzac

It’s a closed beta with NDA. If you don’t have the mental capacity to understand why companies want to install an NDA in the first place, and what signing up a contract with them implies, and if you don’t have the courtesy to do what you agreed to, then don’t sign up for these kind of beta.

Not all games who underwent NDA beta were good, and some may even question the merit of such contract. The bottom line is there’s no need to attack a legit statement which the developers explain for an instance why they requires NDA. Either hold your pitchfork until the game is open beta/released, or do what you signed up for (a generalized “you”, if you did sign up) and be constructive to the development of the game.

The end game may be good, ok, spectacular, or total shit. That doesn’t justify being a useless and counterproductive tester in any way.

Reader
Wolfyseyes

Thanks to Romain for his remarks on the state of an actual, legitimate beta that isn’t a soft-launched early access title.

Crow
Reader
Crow

You’re really ignoring the last five years of TSW being a live game?

Reader
Wolfyseyes

I’m waiting to get my own hands on SWL and make my own impressions as its own thing.

I certainly have some misgivings and concerns, but nothing that can’t be cleared given a bit of time. And I’ll take that over an NDA leak or a game squeezed out on Steam Early Access any day.

Crow
Reader
Crow

It isn’t a new thing, and that is what is being sold to us.

Reader
andistotle

its not sold. its F2P. :P

Reader
Nathan Aldana

“We have always made sure press and influencers have access to pre-launch betas so that they can report from our games before they release.”

Influencers: read: whatever youtubers and twitch streamers we can bribe into shilling for us,.

Reader
Jay Madison

Let the countdown to a Console Port Announcement begin….

Cyclone Jack
Reader
Cyclone Jack

I figured this was a given, seeing as The Park is already on consoles and Conan Exiles is heading there as well.

Reader
ogged451

The Park & Conan Exiles are made in Unreal, which plays nicely with a lot of platforms.
Their in-house Dreamworld engine however … well, they don’t even have an upgrade path for the games running in the v2 line (AoC & TSW) to v3 (which was used by LEGO Minifigures).
Do you really think they manage to get that to PS4 or whatever XBone ?

Crow
Reader
Crow

That’s my big issue here. Dreamengine just doesn’t work for stuff like this.

Reader
rafael12104

It’s definitely a checkbox which has already been checked.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

We’ve now updated the article with a statement made to Massively OP by Funcom’s Romain Amiel.

Crow
Reader
Crow

For this being a bad move on the part of FC and it being a bad move, overall, for their sales of the new game.

Reader
rafael12104

I really like the follow up from both MoP and Funcom on this. Thank you!

Let’s get it straight. Then we can whine and cringe and praise all we want. So many times sensationalism over shadows the truth. See No Man’s Sky.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

so much said and so little actually said.

Reader
odin valhalla

Given the Funcom had a breach of its NDA it would appear they did the best they could. Being objective seems a lot to ask these days but im willing to give the benefit of the doubt. If for nothing else this episode allowed me to observe the discourse and obtain knowledge, that leads to a better opinion more often then not.

As a wise Forum mod once told me “volume doesn’t equate to being right, it often means you want validation as a cynic, are passionate and want the game to do well or you’re trolling” LOL ;)

Reader
Nathan Aldana

what you call a wise forum mod, I call “someone who is hedging their bets”

Crow
Reader
Crow

Funcom used to be so transparent with their coms. No longer.

django857
Reader
django857

The 5 button instead of 8 is a big turn off for me. I hated it in ESO so why would i like it here. So sick of devs dumbing down my skill use. This screams coming to console soon.

Reader
James Crow

its like when a new smarthpone is leaked.
lets be real if someone really going to leak something they give better resolution the phone camera :)

its a PR stunt before the stream tomorrow, if not funcom was delete it at the second it upload to the site.

playing for years but i love the new ability UI.
but still waiting to try it.

Crow
Reader
Crow

I bet anything they let someone leak. Funcom are proving to think they can manipulate their consumer base.

Reader
James Crow

its not just funcom its almost any company with the leaks.
but for me its Win Win, they got the PR they wanted and i got some pictures.

Crow
Reader
Crow

And we forget how much a win-win this is for Funcom, too. before the changes announced TSW threads were getting at best 20 comments. Add a little controversy and suddenly everyone is a player.

Reader
Danny Smith

*cough*streamlinedforconsoles*cough*

Reader
Alex

I’m very excited and really like changes. Game will be much more fun for broader audience.
The only change I’m conflicted with is 5 skills on bar. It’s less than GW2 and Wildstar and it’s not good thing.

Reader
Alex Willis

I do not currently play TSW. I am very sad for current players of the game — this would make me very concerned, too.

That said, I find this all very intriguing. TSW had a subject matter and tone that was always right up my alley, but it always got pushed aside by other MMOs. Nobody wants to play a “Silver Medal” game, and I always convinced myself that’s what it was. Probably unfairly. But this news has me paying attention. Too little, too late? Guess we’ll see.

One thing I will say: I really, really hope these changes don’t make this into a faceroll/easy game. I have no objection to a “solo MMO” — I just don’t think we’ve ever actually seen one. Sure, level scaling and power scaling can mean someone can do group content solo, like in SWTOR), but that’s still a different thing than a solo MMO. I would hope that someone out there could design a truly solo MMORPG, and not have it just be a cakewalk and cash shop. The other day someone painted a picture to me of a game of Dark Souls-level difficulty that was also an MMO. I would LOVE to play that game.

Crow
Reader
Crow

The other day someone painted a picture to me of a game of Dark Souls-level difficulty that was also an MMO. I would LOVE to play that game.

That was basically TSW at launch and before EPE. People praised the nerf-bat in EPE but it killed the dungeons.

Reader
Armsbend

Gamers and the “press” made it out to be a silver medal game when it never was one. In the world of MMOs it was always a top 3 game.

That isn’t saying much over the past 5 years.

Reader
Witches

Looks like a console version of TSW.

Reader
Carlo Rossi

Am I the only one that read the “Pistols” section and thought “This is totally made up”?

Crow
Reader
Crow

Like the rest of their weapons? No weapon acts like it should.

Reader
Tanek

Wait, are you saying assault rifles shouldn’t heal people? ;)

Reader
Tithian

So much doom and gloom.

I mean, combat in TSW is pretty much Builderx3 – x4, Spender. For all weapons. The only thing that changes slightly is AoE and utility and … that’s it? It was heavily criticized on launch, and for one I’m glad that they are not sticking to it because it simply is not viable for today’s gamers. Hell, it was hardly viable at launch.

And the fact that they are actually taking the time to incorporate unique mechanics into each weapon class means that we can finally pick something because we (gasp) like the gameplay, rather than forced into it because “it has heals”, “it has the better AoE”, “it has the better survivability”. Elementalism now sounds like a freaking party, instead of just generic caster. Picking specific ammo for your shotguns?… hell yeah.

Now, I will reserve any criticisms until I actually play the damn thing, if it still feels like ass then SWL will die right there and then.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Well, they don’t want people to play the game. Shouldn’t that speak volumes?

Reader
Lee Abadie

lol wut?

Crow
Reader
Crow

Part of the GM perk was access to the beta testlive server. That apparently means nothing here.

Reader
Tithian

GMs have access to the beta of SWL? That’s news to me. Or do you mean the current game’s testlive server? You lost me there. Please elaborate.

Crow
Reader
Crow

A perk for every sub was access to the beta server. By making this a “new game” they can sidestep this issue.

Reader
Tithian

Ah I see what you mean. You make it sound as if they want to make a new game to circumvent the current playerbase though, which is as tinfoil as it goes.

Reader
Tanek

No response from Funcom? With the game still in closed beta and under NDA, how do you know all of this is accurate? I mean, it might be, but this feels like MOP is printing rumors as opposed to reporting on rumors.

That said, I’ll still be waiting until I can play the game before making any judgements myself.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Nothing on the record.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Damn, that’s the phrase that makes everything okay.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Nah. I just don’t have anything I can print yet. When I do, I will!

Crow
Reader
Crow

If you have something to print, print it. If you don’t, then don’t. I didn’t remember where in my journalism class it was taught that the benefit to a subject overrides the benefit to a journalist and the public.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

It’s the part where you don’t screw over your sources and reporters.

Crow
Reader
Crow

YOU aren’t screwing over anyone. Companies pissed at being called out for bad, consumer-antagonistic policies and approaches get to pass the buck to those who “break” an agreement required to be a part of it in the first place.

I actually find the non-call-out of Funcom due to their abandonment of the MMORPG genre to be more of a bad move than this timid acceptance of moving the goalposts ever so slightly back.

Funcom are literally saying “Fuck off” to MMORPGs with good reason. The real question is how the MMORPG site deals with it.

We either accept and become timid (like with survival games and mobas generally) or we take a stand because MMORPGs are something special we know have more value than what they bring in for f2p cash shops.

To be honest, I don’t think MMORPGs will ever become what they were until they’re back in a place where most development isn’t done for money. There’s a huge moral difference between hobbies turned to cash and hobbies that are for the love of the thing.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I don’t think you’re hearing me. I don’t betray the confidence of my writers and my sources. No reason at all to twist that into a failure to “call out” Funcom. If you just want to hear criticism of what Funcom is doing in regard to the MMORPG genre, the podcast came out on Tuesday, and Justin and I had plenty to say. That’s not what this article is.

Crow
Reader
Crow

You’re misunderstanding me. I think we’re kind-of talking past each other a little. Commentators with no connections to the company can make comments without fear of repercussion. When it comes to companies engaging in NDAs that make no sense from the fact that this isn’t a new game nor is it much different from what was developed five years ago… it stops making sense that we should just let them be.

This isn’t just simple business tactic at all. It goes way beyond that. This is a company that thinks they can get benefit from changing the name of a game while engaging in huge overhauls that change what the game even is.

If this were an overhaul of TSW I’d probably be less worried. This is just so many things that speak to bad shit and what we’re given is a kind of “Oh, well… if you’re not with us you’re against us” mentality which further just means we never evaluate the actual game.

I have a super-fear that SW:L will be nothing like what made TSW a darling for years.

Reader
Jeremy Barnes

I hear whispers of “console” on the wind when I read these changes

Reader
Paragon Lost

Yup, totally dislike the changes to combat.

Reader
Isarii

I like the big changes to combat, but I find vague changes to investigation missions to be a bit worrying. Some of them were admittedly ridiculous (headlights blinking Morse code come to mind), but that was always part of the fun, even if you did just Google up a walkthrough.

Reader
Brown Jenkin

Hmmm so I’m actually slightly more excited about this than I was before. I think in many ways it will all boil down to how the action combat system works out. TSW’s combat system has always been abysmal, it’ll be nice to see if they manage to breathe fresh air into it.

Reader
Feyd Darkholme

I’m having a hard time understanding why, if they are using the same engine, they couldn’t just put these changes in the current game? Not that I’d necessarily want that, but it’s something that I’ve been curious about. As for these leaks, honestly nothing stands out to me as a dealbreaker, but I’m going to want to get into the game and actually play it for myself before I make any real judgements… as anyone should do.

Crow
Reader
Crow

The honest answer is that by re-branding they think they can get away from all the negatives from the last half-decade. It resets metacritic, steam reviews, etc., and creates a kind of PR “blank slate”.

It also allows them to do things like selectively choose beta testers instead of opening it up to all subs via the existing perks.

Overall, the reasons for the re-branding are 100% for Funcom’s benefit. In fact, I think they know that this game won’t appeal to most of the more dedicated TSW players and as such this is strategic.

Reader
Geoffrey Smith

I think the main reason for a complete relaunch is because it sounds like they are completely redoing game play from the ground up. This would be a tough sell to people coming back INTO the game in a mid point or so if that was the case. And given that it would make more sense to just have everyone start anew. Plus there seems to be some big changes to gear (or they were talked about at least) which might also make putting this in mid stream.

And really, they tried a low key version of this with the AEGIS system, and it was terrible.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Every decision a company like FC makes is based on money. Pretending otherwise is just sad.

Reader
Geoffrey Smith

I can’t really comment on any of this too deeply till I can sit down and play it. *reading* about gameplay changes doesn’t mean much till I’ve actually played them. ANd since I can’t read Imgur stuff at work, I can’t even get the actual posts.

I am kinda curious about what it means to have investigation missions “Streamlined” so you don’t need a browser… like… in game tools for things? In game hint books? How would you do origami IN game?

Reader
J. J. Sándor

Clues scattered conveniently all over the world, maybe at several (logical) places at the same time. An in-world search engine returning only premade in-world results. A real in-game library with real books you have to actually search through to find what you need.

There are indeed many ways to give players clues; it all depends on the amount of work the devs are willing to spend in order to prepare the clue hunt for us. ;)

Reader
Geoffrey Smith

That’s kinda what I was thinking. Like, what, for the foreign language ones, did they give you a rosetta stone or something in game? Just saying they are “Streamlined” to avoid using a “browser” doesn’t say much.

Reader
Emperor Caligula

The Not So Secret Anymore World.

I shall, wait and see. People are really overthinking this. I have experienced that often singular features sound good on paper and play bad, and vice versa. A game is always a complete experience. And since it is free we are all on the leisure to try it out.

Reader
odin valhalla

I am happy for the info as I am seriously considering giving this game a real shot once it drops as F2P. However these players that break NDA’s are part of a larger industry problem. On the one hand players flood message boards with feedback, complaints etc and bitch about companies not listening. Then, when a company trusts you and shows you a preview of what they want to do the trust is breached (sometimes).

Its no win for the company in this instance, and it hurts the overall synergy between players and companies. Last, I understand this is an MMO reporting site. I read massively a lot and I think you do a fine job. In this case I think you made a mistake. By making this a news article on your site you’ve furthered the breach. I get it, you report MMO news but this beta tester “unloaded a ton of information” should be admonished. The article takes no license in this vein and its merely an aside to the data dumped.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I understand your concern; we always weigh the overall value of leaks like this. Ultimately, we work for our readers, not for the studios. While we will always take our own NDAs and embargoes seriously and never knowingly break them, damage control for game companies when other people break their agreements just isn’t our role. And in this case, the information is already, irrevocably public and in the gaming public’s interest to know, which makes this uncomfortable but justified.

Reader
Tandor

I’m not sure I’m ever comfortable with the “Because everyone else is doing it, it’s ok for us to do it” argument.

My own view is that a week or two ago Funcom gave you an exclusive interview about SWL, and you’ve repaid them by reporting leaked information that shouldn’t be in the public domain. You shouldn’t be surprised if they remember that next time you ask for an exclusive interview! What goes round, comes round.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

That is not the argument. We’re not breaking an NDA at all, let alone doing so “because everyone else is.” Neither editor who worked on this piece is under any NDA regarding TSW; we’re reporting on someone who was.

When studios grant us interviews, it is generally because they see a benefit to themselves. Retaliatory treatment does happen, but it is relatively rare from professional studios that recognize the press is not part of their PR wing. If an exclusive were to be made contingent on our burying inconvenient stories, I wouldn’t want to be complicit in that anyway, and you shouldn’t want that from the press.

Reader
Tandor

You’ve completely missed my point. I’ve not suggested MOP is breaking any NDA. What you are doing is reporting something that was confidential on the grounds that it’s already in the public domain and as everyone else is reporting it therefore it’s ok for you to do so.

Neither I nor, I imagine, Funcom would expect you to bury the story that someone has leaked information under the NDA. Again, that isn’t my point. The question is whether it is right in such circumstances to report not just on the fact that the NDA has been broken but also on the content of the leak.

Assange and Snowden put massive amounts of leaked data in the public domain. The fact that they did so is in itself a valid news story, the question of whether it is right for newspapers to fill their front pages with that information is another issue altogether, irrespective of whether it’s already in the public domain. That was the point I was making.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I didn’t miss your point. You are suggesting we ought to feel ethically bound by someone else’s confidentiality agreement. But we are no more bound by that than the Gray Lady. What we are bound by is the same thing she is: an obligation to ensure what we print serves the public interest without undue harm, in this case the MMORPG gaming public, since we’re not exactly breaking national security secrets on MOP. We believe this qualifies in our little realm here.

Reader
Tandor

I appreciate the distinction, that this story isn’t exactly breaking national security, but by the same token the question of how combat is changed in a computer game doesn’t really come into the “whether it’s in the public interest” category either!

Clearly this wasn’t an easy issue for you, your own words earlier were that it was “uncomfortable but justified”. Let’s leave it that we both recognise that it was uncomfortable, but that I don’t feel that it was justified while you do. That’s a fair and honest difference of opinion.

Crow
Reader
Crow

how combat is changed in a computer game doesn’t really come into the “whether it’s in the public interest” category either!

When every comment on the game was that the “combat sucked” it is newsworthy.

When a company makes changes to a game that has been live for five years already, that is of the utmost “public interest” for MMORPG players.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I do very much disagree. It is precisely because this overhaul is such an incredibly contentious issue for MMORPG players and has been kept under wraps for so long with, dare I say, a bit of misdirection, that it passes the public import test within the MMO niche. In context, it’s not just some fleeting combat tweak that a site focused on this niche should ignore.

It is uncomfortable because nobody here wishes to harm Funcom or the game. It makes us sad and uncomfortable to publish studio layoff rumors too, but we still must do it.

Crow
Reader
Crow

The public interest is way better served by reportage and open flow of information than by the guidelines set by a company for their own benefit.

There is zero harm in breaking an NDA for a game that was released 5 years ago after they had no NDA on their test server for years.

Art a certain point you have to call bullshit on bullshit and I actually think the complacency of journalists to tow to this kind of crazy line is why we think journalists are spineless.

This NDA is bullshit, and I seriously think MOP would get more viewership and clickthrough if they said, “Hey, your NDA is shitty” than if they just went along with it. Not reporting on an NDA means that MOP competes against far bigger sites and never gain a benefit.

Reader
Tandor

That’s fine, Crow, as long as you accept that if beta testers are happy to break NDAs and journalists are happy both to report the leaks and call BS on the developers using NDAs, then the only consequence of that will be developers dropping beta testing and games being released in an even crappier state than they are already!

Crow
Reader
Crow

That’s fine, Crow, as long as you accept that if beta testers are happy to break NDAs and journalists are happy both to report the leaks and call BS on the developers using NDAs, then the only consequence of that will be developers dropping beta testing and games being released in an even crappier state than they are already!

Like ME: Andromeda, which is becoming an EA game after release?

These days there’s no reason to let a release date be a solid wall. You can release and patch on day 1 if you want to.

Once upon a time a game would live or die on how it shipped. None of this is better or worse unless we still desire games to be in complete form always.

So many games got xpacs that were largely an excuse to fix bugs. Bug fixes were common early internet downloads.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

Exceot no, thats not how that works.

If companies do that, they only have themselves to blame for it, its not the reporters fault for them deciding being transparent about their design descisions is so onerous that their only response is to shovel half-baked shit out the door.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I definitely do not feel responsible when the unpaid labor a studio employs for testing breaks an NDA. I don’t feel responsible for the studio employing unpaid tester labor to begin with.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

as well you shouldnt. People act like corpiorations are benevolent charitable benefactors giving us betas out of the goodness of their heart and that we shouldnt provome them in any way. To which I say, if you truly love a product (like I do wow or persona) then its even MORESO on you to say something.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

if its in the publics interest to know, Yes. That’s a decision a journalistic outfit has to make.

Assange especially tends to only put out stuff that politically benefits people who agree with him, so journalists have to be real wary about leaks from people like him, but its up to journalists to parse that. Its what their job is.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Reporting when under restrictive environments isn’t reportage. Endstop.

Reader
odin valhalla

You know I read the post before I posted. Then I read it after, perhaps it was to strong. I want to make sure I am clear, I understand why it was posted and I dont believe this is a critical issue. I do understand its not your role to damage control for compaines who have had a breach. However I do believe its important to support companies who have had a breech and while that shouldnt exclude massively from providing the news, certainly the way in which the news is reported is important.

Anyway, Im not here to lecture even though I did. Thanks for the reply I do appreciate it.

Reader
Scott

I agree with your statements on players breaking NDA. My first thought when I saw this article is “why would someone do that”? No honor among some people nowadays I guess, all just for “5 minutes” of fame?

Reader
Manastu Utakata

If the leaker remained anonymous, it would of been unlikely for fame. And I think that was “15 minutes”. :)

Reader
Scott

Intentionally “5 Minutes” @Manastu as I don’t want to give them that much credit!

Come on they remained anonymous so they wouldn’t get kicked out of the beta. Behind the scenes that person could be telling people he knows… “yeah that was me on reddit” = “fame”.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Come on they remained anonymous so they wouldn’t get kicked out of the beta. Behind the scenes that person could be telling people he knows… “yeah that was me on reddit” = “fame”.

Do you just discount the idea that giving consumers knowledge is worthwhile in-and-of-itself?

Funcom are setting themselves up for bad reviews. They won’t get the demo that find smooth gameplay most important and they’re fucking over their long-term players by not letting them see the reboot.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I don’t think the leaker was doing it for fame, since Reddit is pretty darn anon, although in some games (GW2, SWTOR) fame is definitely one motivation. Given the controversy and secrecy around TSW atm though, I suspect the leaks are coming from a place of loyalty to the players than from loyalty to Funcom for sure. Assuming everything is even true.

Reader
Nathan Aldana

This, Its like with the mess Atlus provoked this week over in singleplayer rpgs with their ridiculous streaming rules for P5. When you make a move that obviously and blatantly punishes loyal fans of a product of course theres going to be active rebellion

Crow
Reader
Crow

I suspect the leaks are coming from a place of loyalty to the players than from loyalty to Funcom for sure.

Everything about this NDA exists in stark contrast to Funcom-as-a-company. People are very rightly pissed that after almost five years TSW said “you don’t matter” to people who, by GM contract, should have access to beta servers.

Subs got testlive access. I can’t fathom why this changed unless they know current players aren’t going to like the new game.

Crow
Reader
Crow

NDAs aren’t really bound by anything other than what is good for the company issuing the NDA.

The argument is purely Utilitarian (Bree-signal activated). NDAs being broken at arms-length from a consumer/journalist provide far better benefit to the whole of the population than them remaining in a dev-heavy benefit with little to provide to players-as-aggregate.

Crow
Reader
Crow

There’s nothing even that meta-ethical about NDAs like this and leaks. In this case the NDA is purely a tool to (over-) control the flow of information. There are no industry secrets being shared nor anything that isn’t 100% designed for consumer-facing focus. “Breaking” an NDA like this is more heroic than anything else. Isn’t the free-flow of information more ethical than the arbitrary constriction of information?

Now, breaking an NDA oneself-as-a-journalist is stupid from a professional perspective unless that’s the image one wants to convey. But that’s the line between the two: Reportage relies on people “leaking” otherwise every news site everywhere would just be regurgitating PR-speak press releases.

Reader
odin valhalla

I read your post and I respect your opinion. “Breaking” an NDA like this is more heroic than anything else.”

It would be a waste of both of our times to attempt a debate as we have the opposite view of breaking an non disclosure agreement. “Heroic” wouldnt be in my realm of thought in that context.

Crow
Reader
Crow

“Heroic” is certainly an understatement. There is no moral argument to make because this has nothing to do with moral judgements.

Ethically, it comes down to what one values more: Either general access to information for the public OR the ability for a company to maintain whatever PR line they want.

The first option there provides a potential benefit for everyone involved (consumers get informed, companies get PR); the second option provides only a benefit for the company (via controlling PR and information).

I’ll take the one with the larger, cross-section benefit any day. And in the long-run NDAs serve their purpose well and both of us know that Funcom was aware this would happen. Mostly I have a love/hate relationship with NDAs because I believe they both 1) limit consumer choice and informed decision-making; while also 2) are often a necessary evil as most consumers don’t understand how to fairly critique games in alpha/beta states.

Reader
Noel

False dichotomy. It’s not the “public good” vs “evil corporation”, it’s one’s integrity.

If you agree to non-disclosure, you obligate yourself to that agreement. If you think they are ethically null, don’t participate in them.

The utilitarian view is the one you espouse – no rules matter, the mythical “public good” always trumps all other considerations.

Crow
Reader
Crow

You have no idea of what you’re talking about.

That isn’t utilitarian ethics… that is pure Foucualtian power-to-will.

Reader
Sally Bowls

In the end, I have a very different outcome as you.

I agree with you there are arguments as to whether NDAs are net benefit. But this is not about whether contract law should make them enforceable. Some people, journalists, and news organizations do not sign NDAs, presumably at least in part to your points.

However, once you voluntarily sign a NDA and assuming it is enforceable (e.g. no illegality or public safety issues uncovered) then breaking the NDA is illegal, unethical and worse tacky.

Crow
Reader
Crow

breaking the NDA is illegal, unethical and worse tacky.

In most cases it isn’t at all illegal. That’s one of those threats that get thrown around by companies that are erring on threat instead of actual case-law. Because case-law supports that the majority of language in NDAs is unenforceable and more than that… non-criminal. There has never been a criminal conviction for breaking an NDA, though civil courts have ruled when it comes to issues like trade secrets.

In reality, there is no actual consequence to breaking such an NDA.

In the end this is more to do with where it could go than where it is. “Give an inch; they take a mile” is the real problem. Just like the PoGo Class Action it isn’t about games but about who owns what in virtual space. The PoGo lawsuit isn’t about Pokemon… it is about if Kraft can legally place a “go here to get a free sample” on private property. It is the question of, “This seems okay now…” when met with “but where could they go from here?”

The “Internet-of-Things” is gearing up to make it so your Mr. Coffee only accepts “Mr. Coffee Filters” and, most concerning, “Mr. Coffee branded coffee”.

There are millions in these rights. If the leading coffee machine manufacturer decided only X-brand of coffee would turn on when scooped in you’re forced to always buy that brand regardless of competing sales or consumer-focused stuffs.

NDAs are the legal tool that make this a real possibility, and once it exists it will just be that way forever. There’s so much more at stake here than just games, and the fight about this focusing on games is brilliant legal strategy because gamers are such short-sighted, selfish individuals by the numbers that they don’t realize this is paving the way for $40/pop lightbulbs and top-shelf-only kitchen appliances.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

I would never want to break a promise we’ve made. Signing an NDA is a big deal to us. About once a year or so, we accidentally screw up an embargo and we feel terrible. Long ago, I fired a writer for helping a friend break an NDA we’d agreed to — I take it seriously.

But reporting on other people breaking promises, that’s where it’s a bit different. Then again, I realize beta testers don’t take their promises and agreements quite as seriously as media.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Which is why I will encourage every non-journalist to break this shitty and unenforceable NDA.

Reader
Darthbawl

True that. The genie is out of the bottle and MOP didn’t open it. So I don’t see anything wrong with reporting this.

Reader
Tanek

Reporting on it is not the problem. The tone of the reporting and the swiftness of it may be, though.

Lines like “may be best to rip off that band-aid early to get used to the truth” seem to be giving more weight to this than is necessarily warranted for a closed beta NDA leak. Some of the language from the original post has been altered and a disclaimer was added to the end, but it still does not feel like the correct tone.

Plus, I’d be more comfortable if they’d gotten a statement from Funcom or at least said they’d reached out for one and got no reply.

So yes, report on the leak. I would not expect them to ignore it. But do it in a way that doesn’t make me wonder if the post is based, in part, on personal feelings about the “information”. I don’t see this as something intended as an opinion post.

Crow
Reader
Crow

TSW has had 5 years to cultivate sympathy. hey don’t get to claim everything resets because they changed the name of the game.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Honestly, I’d see something wrong with not reporting on this at this point. NDAs don’t help journalistic sites in any way, shape or form aside from when someone else breaks one.

Reader
Hirku

That’s that, then.

wpDiscuz