View Single Post
Old Feb 26th, 2013, 09:18:38   #5
Arguru
Bitterder than stale beer
 
Arguru's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Thanks for the update Nusquam. It's good to know your undivided efforts will go to completely ignoring AO and AoC, keeping TSW on life support while all other resources are directed to that LEGO game.

EDIT: I may have come across as a bit jaded here. I apologize - something I rarely do. Over the years I've become increasingly disgruntled with the direction this game's management has taken - see line below my name - but this is unfair to you. I have no idea who you are, and as you said, you haven't worked on AO yet so I can't blame you for past mistakes. And who knows, maybe we'll finally see AO become awesome again. I sincerely doubt it, but still.

Anyways.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
Recently I got the opportunity to take on the mantle of Creative Director for Funcom's live titles: The Secret World, Age of Conan and Anarchy Online.
So are you new to the position, to Funcom altogether or even to MMO's? This is not necessarily a bad thing, just curious.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
As most of you know by now, Funcom has established a joint, centralized team of experienced developers who have been tasked with supporting, enhancing and expanding all three live games. That means we have a shared pool of design creativity and technical know-how that each game can benefit from, and having the live team working on site at our Durham office – which also holds our community, quality assurance and customer service teams – is a huge plus. I will be leading up the team together with Scott Junior, who has taken on the position as Executive Producer.
My comment above still stands though. Be realistic and look at the revenues from TSW, and then to AO's and AoC's. Any somewhat sane corporate manager would direct the majority of the resources to the game that's the biggest cashcow (i.e., has the most people paying for it). Sounds harsh, but that's the reality. Knowing this, how much do you think you can do for AO - which has been in a downward spiral ever since AI was released? A promise with 'we'll give AO the attention it deserves!' won't cut it in my book. Promises by Funcom have been made a lot, and have been broken on an equal frequency. I mean, AO can still be 'saved' but it'd basically mean developing AO2 from scratch. Since this isn't realistic by a long shot, what are your effective plans on *saving* AO? Do you think it's still possible? Do you think that you have the resources to do so?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
It's a pretty big honor to be able to be work on three of the most innovative MMORPGs that exist but there is one pretty big catch - Anarchy Online scares the crap out of me.
Scared? You should be. You. Should be. </Yoda>

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
It isn't the skill system, implants, the NCU or even the UI. It isn't taking over a game on which I have never dealt with the lore. We have good people who can fill me in on all of the areas where I lack knowledge about the game.
Just PM any random roleplayer that's still around and they'll happily help you out. They shouldn't be that hard to locate, there's probably about 3 of them left in a corner somewhere. But honestly, do you think that lore is the thing that AO needs right now? There's more than enough ingame right now to satisfy a completely new player for years (assuming the rest of the game wouldn't suck) and the ones who have gone through the content have left a long, long time ago and in my case went to a galaxy far far away (see sig). Shouldn't you be focussing on the few aspects why most people still remotely care about AO? Like character customization, PvP and new PvE content.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
It's that I'm stepping for the first time, into a situation where I have no hands-on experience with the tools myself... no safety net in the sense that I can't just sit down and tell people how to solve a problem in our tools. A large part of design is knowing what can be done, and at what price.
Protip: A technical solution without proper implementation is not a solution, it's an additional problem. I'll leave you to think about that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
Anarchy Online is not Age of Conan or The Secret World. The shared codebase of those games branched away from Anarchy so far back in the past that it is comparable to the genetic difference between humans and a banana (I'll let you decide which represents which, dear community.)
Code is code and even millions of lines of spaghetti code can be read by any decent programmer with a little effort. As far as I know you have only hired one, ever: Macrosun. Consider open-sourcing part of the code that isn't licensed under any proprietary bullocks and basically tell your community "Hai here's a snippet, there's a problem x somewhere here and it needs to do y". Won't solve all your problems but should clear a lot of the workload. And no Vhab, your argument is still invalid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
As such, the benefits of a shared team solution for Anarchy Online are limited to the art and quality assurance side. The core of the Anarchy development team still exists (pending various contract negotiations) and remains focused on developing Anarchy. Obviously their specialized knowledge of Anarchy and all of the idiosyncrasies of the game is a massive boon in keeping the game moving forward.
Except what the community has been waiting for is not art and lore and shinies. It's programming work. You can outsource art design to any random Chinese (Beijing office) or even a random player (Docaholic). But the programming work, basically the engine, server merge, parry/riposte changes, rebalance, etc. has been on the waitlist longer than HL3. And yet those are the things people want right *now*.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
Despite my lack of hands-on experience with Anarchy Online, I do believe I will be able to bring something new to the game. Having worked extensively on both Age of Conan and The Secret World, I like to think I have a firm understanding of what does and doesn’t work, and for a game that’s been around for over ten years, I think having someone come in with fresh ideas and a new perspective can do the game good in the long run.
New management can either screw stuff up completely or change things for the better. Aim for the latter and take comfort in that you can't do much worse than the previous couple of years of management.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
So what’s coming up for Anarchy?
Basically stuff that we've been promised over and over and over and over and over again?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
Finally, my personal goal is getting a better handle on Anarchy and everything contained therein. I'll start playing through the game and trying to experience as much as possible while providing commentary on the design side of Anarchy. Expect to see my weird blog entries showing up on the Anarchy community site soon!
Do that *right now*. No developing first. No hints and tips from your colleagues and peers. Just jump straight in without any prior knowledge whatsoever and see how you end up at around level 100. Then compare yourself to the current playerbase. No, I'm not going to tell you why, because that would defeat the purpose. But you're new to this game, and that offers an actual *realistic* approach to what the game is currently like. I fully applaud this initiative but don't delay. Just do it before you're spoiled by your own promises.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nusquam View Post
Anarchy Online has been in the lives of hundreds of thousands of players for more than a decade. I am excited to finally be a part of it.
Cheers,
Joel Bylos
Creative Director
Funcom
I've been with this game for half of that time, and for better or for worse. And like most players, for the majority of it I was also excited to be a part of it. But in the end most of the community currently consists of bitter vets. And they're bitter for a reason. I guess it's up to you to pick up AO's game. Good luck, I don't envy you.

Last edited by Arguru; Feb 26th, 2013 at 09:48:19..
Arguru is offline