Why Do MMO Companies Seem to Not Care About Their Players?By: Beligerent posted at Jul 09, 2012 12:23 am
Okay so to try and understand what I'm trying to to get at here I'll give you a list of MMO companies:
$OE (SOE I guess...)
What do these four companies seem to have in common? In the past (and some recently) they have failed to listen to their players to make their products the best they possibly could. Funcom lied to its playerbase about AoC and spoke of features that to this day are still not in the game. En Masse recently has failed to communicate with its playerbase in a proper fashion when players reported an exploit in the nexus, and some are being banned for posting in threads about the problem. A GM even sent this message (below) to a player when they reported about the problem (supposedly).
SOE refuses to listen to its playerbase about their hugely fail F2P service. When they decided to recently use the same F2P service they have for EQ2 on Vanguard a lot of players lost interest (not surprisingly). This F2P service is more of a long-term demo, really, with race and class restrictions and limited choices for end game gear, F2P players probably will not even be able to do end game raids without subbing. For a game as old as Vanguard this seems like a poor choice when it so desperately needs a bigger playerbase. It puzzles me why SOE doesn't follow NCsoft's F2P service more. NCsoft obviously still makes money off of it and the playerbase in Lineage II and Aion have increased with the new F2P services implemented in each game.
EA is just an extremely greedy company, and unlike a lot of people who blame Bioware for the mess that SW:TOR turned out into I put the blame soley on EA. I highly suspect that they pressured Bioware to release SW:TOR the way it was because they wanted to make a quick buck (how they thought this could equal the supposed $150 million spent on making the game remains a mystery to me). They really should just stick to making Sims games.
Why have these MMO companies failed to listen to their playerbase? In some cases it's so bad that it's obvious they are just blatantly ignoring their players. The real reason is quite simple in the long run, and I'm sure it's also pretty obvious: Money. We are the "ka-ching" in the pockets of corporate scumbags who don't give a crap about us. Players seem to get this idea into their heads that the MMO industry is free from this. But it's not. It's just like the movie and the console gaming industry, while there may be some gems that appear once in a while, most of it is total garbage to try and grab a quick buck... well, quickly!
And if you think it's going to stop anytime soon... Well you're in for a rude awakening. This is all business. Contracts are handed out, crappy MMOs are bought cheaply overseas to publish in the NA for the sole purpose of trying to suck some fast cash out of some dumb players, and the people at the top are laughing it up all the way to the bank. This is how are world is run. By corporations, and I'm sorry to say this, but it's in no way different for the MMO industry. Players need to start getting smarter and watch out for those huge-ass IPs based off of popular books or movies. Why do you think they are being made into MMOs? because they are popular and so corporations expect it to make even more money for them if they are made into MMOs. That's not to say all MMOs based off of IPs are bad or are going to be bad. But players should be wary. The MMO industry is expanding and becoming lucrative for corporations. It started out small, but it's slowly turning into a huge cash cow.