Pathfinder Online lays off almost entire staff

    
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Paizo CEO Lisa Stevens has announced to Pathfinder Online supporters that the majority of the Goblinworks team working on the game has been laid off.

We knew we needed a certain amount of money to finish to build the game, and we came really damn close, but we just couldn’t find the last bit of funding that we needed. […] Last Friday, we had to lay off most of the staff. […] I couldn’t pay them anymore. We gave them lots of warning, so they all knew this was coming.

CTO Mark Kalms, Art Director Mike Hines, and Designer Bob Settles are all that remain of the studio. According to Stevens, Goblinworks CEO Ryan Dancey left the company two weeks ago for personal reasons unrelated to the layoffs. Lee Hammock and Steven Cheney were also apparently among those let go.

Work on the game will continue with the three remaining employees, paid by existing subscription revenue, which will also keep the servers online. Paizo is closing the Goblinworks office and moving the trio into the Paizo offices. Stevens says Paizo is seeking an external publisher to buy Goblinworks or investors to complete the game. There is hope, she says, since 75% of the game is already paid for; she expects the game will take between 1 million and 2 million dollars to finish.

Stevens further hints that the game’s original Kickstarter was intended to speed up the project and was predicated on additional investment commitments that didn’t fully materialize. Another Kickstarter, she says, is not planned as the team is still working on existing Kickstarter rewards.

When asked what the community can do, she suggested that continuing to play and pay the early enrollment subscription, inviting new players, and treating new players well is most helpful.

Our sympathies extend to the entire studio and its players.

Source: Soundcloud, official post. Thanks, Slapshot1188.
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Last month (January 2018), i found out that i had 1 month of play time remaining on my account. So i re-enabled my account, downloaded the client, installed (and waited), and then logged in. Once i was finally able to login to the game, I noticed my character (created YEARS ago when i first found out about the game) was NO LONGER THERE! (you know, how you’re supposed to gain XP every day for having made a character since the game first started? It’s all supposed to be accumulating in some form whether you play or not, right? WRONG!). So my character was somehow gone and i had to make a new one?

So i made a “new character” … if you can call it that. The options and graphics for making new characters was WORSE than a 16-bit video game from the 1990s (and saying that is too much of a compliment for what is now called “PFO”) and trying to make a new character just felt SO PATHETIC, and LOOKED SO HORRIBLE, and was SO ABOMINABLE, just as the experience of a tabletop Pathfinder player… I honestly felt like i was messing around with old 16-bit 1990s technology… I just could not believe the absolute LACK of any uniqueness or art or abilities or anything i could possibly do, when just making a character … I mean, each race had barely 3 recognizable “looks”, and even those were SO ROUGH around the edges, the way they made the figure look, it was just … what the hell was i even doing there? So I finally finished what i thought i wanted, and then finalized the character. Then i was actually IN the game with my “new” character (a Dwarf this time, unlike my first real alpha character that i guess i lost, which was an Elf). I looked around the playing field …. everything looked so … bland … and systematically-generated and just … BLAND. EVERYTHING looked as bare-bones as it could possibly look, and the NPCs and “trainers” just stood there looking into nothingness and saying nothing and doing nothing and … they were nothing (as if they were robotic)….

THIS IS THE GREAT “PATHFINDER ONLINE” of Kickstarter FAME?!? Uhhhhh … NO. Just, NO.

I logged out. Canceled my account (even though I had 28 more days left on it and i had barely consumed even 1 or 2 days of my remaining time). Then later I wiped the client off my hard drive, said “SCREW THAT!!!” and then tried to forget i ever BACKED this game, to start with :(

IF ANYONE EXPECTS this to be anything like Pathfinder Tabletop, you will be SORELY MISTAKEN (hopefully not too many invested in this UTTER PIECE OF TRASH!!!!)

All that hope and optimism i had, back when i first chatted with Ryan Dancey, IN-GAME (before this last play-test by me, back when i first looked at it, years before this) … all that HOPE and OPTIMISM was DASHED just seeing what a TRAVESTY this “game” had become!!!!! :(

Paizo/Goblinworks: I’ll just stick to pencils, paper, and books, please. I suggest you do, too.

kradlum
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kradlum

cursedseishi I also backed for all the tabletop stuff that came with the kickstarters. I played for about 6 months before my laptop fritzed out then sold my account. All in all I am happy with what I got out of the kickstarters.

The game was basic and buggy to begin with but it improved quite a bit over the time I played it. Like most sandbox games, you get out of it what you put in. I had 2 characters gaining xp so I could make my own armour and weapons. My group met up most nights, although I was on UK time and they were on US time so I played mostly with them on weekends. We did a lot of PvE to get recipes, and a bit of PvP to protect our territory. They were going to nerf archry shortly after I quit and that was part of what made me to decide to sell my account rather than invest in a new laptop.

kradlum
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kradlum

cursedseishi

Gylnne
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Gylnne

Tridus AilsaN10 We are told it takes millions but does it really?

Gylnne
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Gylnne

dradiinmmo jefreahard Would be interesting to see how lavish or not the devs live as they develop games from successful kickstarters.

Gylnne
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Gylnne

masonweaver LOL

Gylnne
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Gylnne

SoMuchMass Did they tell the backers he left? If not they should have.

Gylnne
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Gylnne

rottenrotny  “Paid alphas/betas and cash shops for games not even released yet needs to go.”
 Agree, but the only way that will happen is if gamers start hold on to the wallets and stop giving these companies money until they deliver the product.

Gylnne
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Gylnne

Wakkander Grave Knight Tridus Hmm if I understand you correctly they decided to add pvp to a established table top game that was all pve and drew that kind of crowd? So in other words screw you existing players that love pve we are adding pvp because we say it is good for you!

Gylnne
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Gylnne

ScottHenry1 KryptonianGL Scott there are many pve games that are successful without pvp. Saying you need pvp to be a successful PC game is lame and does not hold up to the history of MMO’s.