The Daily Grind: What gives you cause to forgive MMO studios or publishers?

    
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It's fine, everything is fine, this is fine.

There are a lot of reasons people have to dislike NCsoft as a publisher. But oddly enough, if you’re a fan of WildStar who has sworn a vow to never forgive the company for shutting that game down, it actually gives NCsoft very little incentive to change in the future. After all, you’re never going to forgive them no matter what; they may as well keep shutting down underperforming games, right? No good will is coming back to them.

Burying the hatchet with a studio that did something bone-headed is always complicated. I knew people who cut ties with Blizzard over the whole RealID fiasco back in the day, and I myself promised that so long as that was going on, I’d not spend a dime on any of the company’s products. Then it did get reversed, and that changed my willingness to spend money on them… but it was still some time before I did so.

We all have reasons why we’re willing to say that a certain publisher or studio is no longer entitled to our money. But what gives you cause to change that stance and forgive the studio or publisher? Or do you figure that once someone is on the “no” list, it’s a permanent spot?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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Demon of Razgriz
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Demon of Razgriz

NCSoft lost me with the shutdown of CoH. Being that they refused to not listen to the player base and, at minimum, leave the game in maintenance mode or sell it to another company, they showed me that, as a consumer, my voice didn’t matter. We all had not just a financial investment but also a emotional one in the game. CoH didn’t appeal to all and that’s ok. It was “our” game for the diehards our there. So NCSoft could never get another dollar from me not can any company remotely associated with them. I will admit that when they announced Project Hon, I was intrigued but it wasn’t enough to get me to go back on my word. Hope the company goes under and they’re finally forced to sell CoH so it could get a proper home.

Dantos
Reader
Dantos

I try to be a pragmatist when it comes to, most things really. I don’t tend to get emotionally invested enough in any game to get offended or angered when a decision I don’t like is made. I will spend money on things that I feel I will enjoy and/or get decent reviews. I feel that is the best way to get my voice across, since how else would a developer/publisher know what I like? Positive reinforcement I guess, for a little as my wallet matters.

Mewmew
Reader
Mewmew

For me, I cut ties with games rather than with studios. For instance – Nexon did me very wrong with some support issues I had with their launcher bugs and Maplestory 2. So I quit Maplestory 2 right then and there and I’m never ever going to return to it. They will never get another penny of mine when it comes to Maplestory 2 and I’m going even further by not playing it at all to help its popularity because I really feel they railed me in a support issue. And yet if Nexon releases other games I like, I will play them still and give them a new chance to do right by me the next time around.

I suppose if a specific company did me wrong enough times in a row I may stop playing their titles completely (and that’s a big *may*), but for the most part I’m not going to just make the overall statement that I won’t play games by a company. If they come out with one that looks appealing enough, I reserve the right to have fun playing it and not deprive myself that experience.

Ubisoft did me wrong in some of their forays into mobile, but Ubisoft releases a crazy amount of majorly awesome AAA titles and I’m not going to stop playing them all because of a few issues with the company. I also don’t think I have the right to start being a criminal and pirating or anything, so if I want them I have to pay for them, it’s just the difference of spending more or less on optionals within these games (free to play especially but most buy to play even have some kind of extras to buy these days).

So about those optionals – it definitely will affect the amount of money I spend inside their games. If they do me wrong as a company overall no matter what the titles were, I will spend as little as possible to get by in *all* of their games, I will go without the flashy cosmetics, etc. If they do me right, I blow money on their optional stuff left and right.

If they’ve right by me some times and wrong by me others, that’s different than a company that has only done wrong by me and nothing but wrong by me.

I guess I could eventually forgive Daybreak who burned me on multiple titles, but right now I want nothing to do with them as a company and they’d really have to prove themselves to get my business back. They just do wrong too many times over and haven’t really done anything right as far as it concerns me. I could forgive them but it would need to be a big turnaround or a title that’s so good I had issue not playing it. As it is I’m very reluctant to give them another chance at all and they’ve already fooled me multiple times, so it would seem I’d be the one who should be shamed if I gave them yet another chance.

Vaeris
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Vaeris

I’ve only experienced this with two companies where I felt my “forgiveness” came into the equation: Sony Online Entertainment, and Funcom. I never forgave SOE for the “Here’s the Mustafar Expansion, give us money” and then a week later “Oh, here’s the NGE, all that ME expansion stuff is moot and we aren’t doing refunds”. Course enough pressure and they gave folks like 3 days to get their money back (I did). Fairly sure I never gave SOE money again and that was 14 years ago.

I wasn’t as passionate about Age of Conan as I was SWG but I did like it. I was one of the vocal ones asking for a serious pass of crafting in the game while in development only to hear Gaute Godager say the game was about “Combat, Combat, Combat” and little else no matter how much the customers wanted it. So, I played for a while. got bored and left. Then a few months/years I read that Funcom is working on some huge crafting patch to give the game a decent player crafting system. I was like “Oh now you want to put crafting in to try and help retain players”. Good for you to finally see it, but no thanks.

Outback Steak House ticked me off 17(ish) years ago. I haven’t been back since. I eat steak at least once a week (roughly $22,000 for my plate, not counting my wife and kids over that time). So, basically if a company makes a “business decision” that puts me off enough, and that scale varies per situation, then I’m out for good.

You run a business, you EARN money in the many various facets/meanings of the word “earn”. It isn’t owed and neither is a second chance.

Reader
G0dl355

I feel the same about Best Buy. Robbed me for 160 dollars through shoddy pc repairs. Cant wait to hear the news that Amazon finally killed them.

MurderHobo
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MurderHobo

I have to be pragmatic. They’re all either lunatics, corporate sellouts or too aware of their own limitations to reach for the big brass ring. It’s a low-prestige industry with inhumane working conditions and lots of loose money changing hands, so I can’t expect even the so-called AAA shops to be places where the brightest and best want to build their careers.

I can forgive a lot — Failure is a win to me, if something new and innovative takes hold from a project. A certain level of predatory crap is tolerable. When I burn a bridge, however, it’s torched forever.

Wildcard is case in point for me. Best game I’ve ever played, and I’ve forgiven their douchebaggery time and again, but the stunt they pulled with Atlas is all but an act of fraud upon their customers as far as I’m concerned. Wildcard/Grapeshot is dead to me.

Reader
Utakata

Anytime they go off the rails with their direction and/or philosophy…

A) They own it.
B) They correct it.
C) Then they move onto something better.

…though it’s been my experience and observation, that most companies can’t seem to get past A. /bleh

PurpleCopper
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PurpleCopper

Forgive NCSoft? I’m surprised they didn’t kill off Wildstar much earlier. If anything, they were pretty forgiving of the mess that Wildstar was at the start. a monthly sub hardcore raiding MMO. Who thought that was a good idea?

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Monsoon

The only thing that could get me to consider forgiving NCSoft would be for them to either return City of Heroes to its former glory, or hand it over to another company willing to run it.

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Tee Parsley

Yep, haven’t spent a penny on an NCSoft game since then. Not likely to again, given their ongoing behavior.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
NeoWolf

I have always said I would never say “never” to a company and therefore a game. If they come good, stop the BS and the excuses and the PR obfuscations, and fix the issues then whatever the game, whatever the publisher I would give them a second chance as I do not like to right things off as it stands to possibly deprive me of enjoyment, which I am never in favor of.

But I also keep my word and after MANY MANY years or unpleasant encounters with NCSoft and pretty much all of theme except arenanet) or its affiliates in situations where they were pretty much screwing me over as a customer and even having thier support staff once outright called me a liar (disapproving that gave me great satisfaction) I swore I would never touch another NCsoft or Affiliate game. They are one company that overstepped beyond what I am willing to forgive by making it personal and so I have not and will not ever touch one of thier games ever again. They are the very worst example of a money first, customer second company.

Reader
Anstalt

The only publisher I boycott is EA. I started boycotting them after SWTOR – I couldn’t believe that you could spend that much money on building a game and it still turn out rubbish. That then caused me to review previous EA games and I came to the realisation that every single EA game I’ve ever played has been disappointing. They’ve all had a solid core of gameplay, but without fail every single game they’ve published seems to end just before it really starts getting good.

Its like they develop games for people with an IQ of 85 or below. They offer solid, simple gameplay that everyone can enjoy but just when you’d expect the game to start getting deeper and for the game to open up, it inexplicably ends. Add to that their terrible record of devouring studios and their predatory business practices, it just made sense to stop buying their games.

What would reverse my decision?

If they started making good games.

Or, they released Skate 4. I’d buy that, even though I know the game would likely be disappointing in many respects, I just love skating around and finding my own spots to mess about in.