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baerin

Holding on to the Crowfall Vision

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If you were looking for a great example of how a games vision can be suffocated by a producer, look no further.

I have been playing a lot of Black Desert recently, and came across this article from a few months ago. 

 

At the start of the article the vision is fresh and new, and Pearl Abyss is a young upstart game developer looking to shake things up, and change the way people play MMO's.

 

As it progresses though you see more and more of the influence Daum (the publisher) is having on the game. Its vision begins to die, features are removed to make the game smoother and more "accessible." A little less difficult, a little less unique, and a little more profitable.

 

 

All that said, I came here to express my appreciation for ArtCraft, and Crowfall. Thank you for taking the risk of crowdfunding, and prioritizing Crowfalls vision over it's profits. Stay the course!

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If you were looking for a great example of how a games vision can be suffocated by a producer, look no further.

I have been playing a lot of Black Desert recently, and came across this article from a few months ago. 

 

At the start of the article the vision is fresh and new, and Pearl Abyss is a young upstart game developer looking to shake things up, and change the way people play MMO's.

 

As it progresses though you see more and more of the influence Daum (the publisher) is having on the game. Its vision begins to die, features are removed to make the game smoother and more "accessible." A little less difficult, a little less unique, and a little more profitable.

 

 

All that said, I came here to express my appreciation for ArtCraft, and Crowfall. Thank you for taking the risk of crowdfunding, and prioritizing Crowfalls vision over it's profits. Stay the course!

 

Many people are still very concerned that ACE will capitulate to the "big money" that can come in from making a game accessible to the masses via dumbing down mechanics and lowering the skill requirement.  I don't quite understand this train of thought because the game has continued to progress in the same manner that ACE laid out, and focus on combat first as they told us they would.

 

There's so much worrymongering that takes place and this has been one of the better development processes I've witnessed in the past decade.

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If you were looking for a great example of how a games vision can be suffocated by a producer, look no further.

I have been playing a lot of Black Desert recently, and came across this article from a few months ago. 

 

At the start of the article the vision is fresh and new, and Pearl Abyss is a young upstart game developer looking to shake things up, and change the way people play MMO's.

 

As it progresses though you see more and more of the influence Daum (the publisher) is having on the game. Its vision begins to die, features are removed to make the game smoother and more "accessible." A little less difficult, a little less unique, and a little more profitable.

 

 

All that said, I came here to express my appreciation for ArtCraft, and Crowfall. Thank you for taking the risk of crowdfunding, and prioritizing Crowfalls vision over it's profits. Stay the course!

 

One only needs to look at Wildstar's development to know what happens when you build a game that is too inaccessible and difficult for the average gamer.  For those that don't know... it's a recipe for failure.

 

Make the game as fun as possible for the most amount of people = success and longevity.

 

Make the game inaccessible, overly hard/complicated = empty servers

Edited by evade2015

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Many people are still very concerned that ACE will capitulate to the "big money" that can come in from making a game accessible to the masses via dumbing down mechanics and lowering the skill requirement.  I don't quite understand this train of thought because the game has continued to progress in the same manner that ACE laid out, and focus on combat first as they told us they would.

 

There's so much worrymongering that takes place and this has been one of the better development processes I've witnessed in the past decade.

 

Pre-Alpha has lost its meaning with all the Early this and Beta that.. people don't understand and make assumptions with no logical premise... other than "Hey, this game is not exactly as advertised right now and its in a testing phase!" Fools, most games go into public testing when they have stable builds and are nearly complete. We are literally seeing the surface of what is to come. 

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If you were looking for a great example of how a games vision can be suffocated by a producer, look no further.

I have been playing a lot of Black Desert recently, and came across this article from a few months ago. 

 

At the start of the article the vision is fresh and new, and Pearl Abyss is a young upstart game developer looking to shake things up, and change the way people play MMO's.

 

As it progresses though you see more and more of the influence Daum (the publisher) is having on the game. Its vision begins to die, features are removed to make the game smoother and more "accessible." A little less difficult, a little less unique, and a little more profitable.

 

 

All that said, I came here to express my appreciation for ArtCraft, and Crowfall. Thank you for taking the risk of crowdfunding, and prioritizing Crowfalls vision over it's profits. Stay the course!

 

I think it's less daum and more customer demand. There was a lot of tears shed over the ruthlessness of the pvp system, so they watered it down.

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I think if games like this, crowd-funded and with a loyal fan base like this, you don't want to make the game watered down and 'accessible' to the masses. You want to stay loyal to that fan base, because then they will do what they can to bring their friends along and grow the game they love.

 

If the fan base is big enough to fund the development of the game, its big enough to keep the game in business and you don't wanna try to make everyone happy because then you'll ruin it and make no one happy.

Edited by Sommazzatore

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One only needs to look at Wildstar's development to know what happens when you build a game that is too inaccessible and difficult for the average gamer.  For those that don't know... it's a recipe for failure.

 

Having Beta-tested Wildstar myself for almost a year I can't agree with this statement. To be clear, I'm talking personally here, not for the general gamer population.

 

In this year I saw Wildstar transform from a challenging, unique game to a bland, generic and "we all have seen this before" mmo. In the course of that year I lost more and more interest and I didn't even buy the game at release. I do not believe being unique and challenging is recipe for failure. I think being the same snowflake with a different sci-fi skin is though.

 

During the last months of development a few familiar faces left the company. The community manager and the CEO Gaffney were among them. It did hurt the company and the development of the game imo.

 

When they announced the release date of Wildstar, my first thought was: "What, this is too soon! The game is not ready and certainly not done." The lack of end-game content and the unfinished polish of the game has spoken for itself. Wildstar's launch was a big failure. Currently with the f2p release they seem ready, but the game is still one of a dozen and certainly not unique enough for me to be interested in it.

 

It's also a matter of attitude. WoW made a lot of lazy, I want to do everything and get everything easy mmo gamers. I'm hopeful that the next generation will love a challenge once again. I'm hopeful because I see a trend in gaming in general to harder and tougher games. For example, Minecraft is brutal compared to WoW.

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well I think the recent trend of mobile games also has to do something with the fact that the MMO's be it MMO-RPGs or fps's or w.e. become easier and more accessible to a broader audience. Basically with the mobile games I've seen far to many examples of "Why bother trying when you can pay yourself to the top". I mean a buddy introduced me to Fallout Shelter. Soon after he spent 40€ on the game because we didn't want wait for his shelter to grow. In essence he didn't play it after 3 days as he already got bored of it.

 

With all these influences it's not really a big surprise people can't stand losing or want everything immediately without any effort put in it.

 

(...)

 

Make the game as fun as possible for the most amount of people = success and longevity.

 

Make the game inaccessible, overly hard/complicated = empty servers

 

Too much fun also kills the game.

 

When a game makes fun from the second you start, I guarantee you grow tired of it sooner than a game which challenges you here and there. On the contrary making the game extremely hard or complex (combat core system, crafting, pvp rules) at some aspects will only work if your game excels at the other aspects (graphic, gameplay, core systems, etc.)

 

Finding the borderline is essentially what you have to do but this is where most games fail as they have to target more than 1 group, as they have to make a good amount of money thus targeting more than 1 group and so on.

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Having Beta-tested Wildstar myself for almost a year I can't agree with this statement. To be clear, I'm talking personally here, not for the general gamer population.

 

In this year I saw Wildstar transform from a challenging, unique game to a bland, generic and "we all have seen this before" mmo. In the course of that year I lost more and more interest and I didn't even buy the game at release. I do not believe being unique and challenging is recipe for failure. I think being the same snowflake with a different sci-fi skin is though.

 

During the last months of development a few familiar faces left the company. The community manager and the CEO Gaffney were among them. It did hurt the company and the development of the game imo.

 

When they announced the release date of Wildstar, my first thought was: "What, this is too soon! The game is not ready and certainly not done." The lack of end-game content and the unfinished polish of the game has spoken for itself. Wildstar's launch was a big failure. Currently with the f2p release they seem ready, but the game is still one of a dozen and certainly not unique enough for me to be interested in it.

 

It's also a matter of attitude. WoW made a lot of lazy, I want to do everything and get everything easy mmo gamers. I'm hopeful that the next generation will love a challenge once again. I'm hopeful because I see a trend in gaming in general to harder and tougher games. For example, Minecraft is brutal compared to WoW.

 

I had almost the same experience.  I was an early beta tester for Wildstar and it really came down to my chat with their then PVP lead, I have no idea if she is still there or not but I spoke my mind with clear examples about tthe state of pvp and how it would not work upon release.  It was evident that the feedback was not going to even be taken into consideration.  So I never bought the game either.  I have heard that pvp is just awful there though...

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I think the vision for Crowfall is pretty accommodating to different playstyles already. If you like to play dangerously, you play in rulesets with generous looting and combat rules. If you like to play it safer, you play other rulesets. There will hopefully be a strong crafting segment to be found (hope we hear more about this soon!), and even some Sims-type players in their EK. The win here is the design allowing people to choose the level of involvement they have. 

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I dont get anyway why publishers always ruin games. Oh, I know! Let me explain: I watched every Extra Credits episode and who knows them also knows that they are a bunch of brilliant people capable of great game design. And guess what publisher are not? Right, game designers. So, @Thyr what you descibed is game design 101. For ACE to figure out what you describe, ACE needs to test the game, and we as a community need to give comphrehensive and merciless feedback so that ACE can figure out the best intrest curve possible and for the audience. Speeking of which @Thry catering to us  the Kickstarter backers is a bad idea. Even now in pre-alpha we got white knights who want to "save" the game (cant even say it with a straight face) and "testers" who cant test because of the ping or delay being too high. Although things such as fan art and fan songs are just an indicator for an active and involved community (Wildstar had that too and perished horrible) trolls and whiners are too. If crowfall already has trolls, whiners and white knights so early on, we reached  so far to not only cater to fan boys or people desperatly trying to find their old Black Desert Online or Wildstar but also to the internet as a whole (for me trolls are an internet resource). 

 

I think we will get through as long as ACE knows how to design games and doesnt look only after money, which I am positive of. The idea head of Crowfall made Shadowbane. And the money guy got half of the team together and even plays besides us! Both of them are not shy to talk to us or make a fool of themself. You can let my tunnels collapse if they dont save us when socks hit the fan. We already saved them ;)  

Edited by IamMe

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I'm not worried.  ACE has shown that they are capable of consistently delivering good results and sticking to their professed agenda.  It's just like the stock market.  The longer you set and meet responsible expectations, the more trust you garner from your "investors".

Edited by Nazdar

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Honestly, ACE is showing us that they do know what they want to do. They are working on making the game accessible for everyone, and also allowing those who wish to have a much more challenging, yet rewarding playstyle available. ACE is doing well, but we need to make sure the direction Crowfall is going stays the path. That means for us testers and future testers, is to provide rigorous amounts of feedback that is as unbiased as we can make it.

 

By doing this, we will not only help ACE, but mold the future of Crowfall with them. I've had to chance to beta test many MMO's, and the biggest issue that comes to MMO's in this current age of gaming is the money grab. Don't make it about the money, make it about the community. 

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The worst game that I supported before release that did a 180 to cater to the mass and grab that cash was Mechwarrior online. At first their vision was a 3025 area battle tech like game and as soon as they collected the money from us that like that style they switched to clan area of course. They they changed thing to make it more fast pace and like a shooter... and so on.

Here at crowfall I have seen ArtCraft listen to the fans, but give the game they have promised (so far) so I still have confidence in them after being burnt in the past.

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Wildstar is probably the most tragic MMO I've ever seen. Carbine made the game people said they wanted. During the development of Wildstar everyone said they wanted hard dungeons, attunements, 40 man raiding etc. They made exactly what everyone said they wanted and then people got upset because it was too hard.

 

People THOUGHT they wanted hard dungeons and raids but they really didn't. I played Wildstar for a really long time and had a lot of fun with the PvE however I was in the world first raiding guild at the time and was able to experience the game in a way that most weren't able to.

 

Wildstar absolutely had some problems (The PvP was a complete goatcustard) but the main reason it dropped off so fast is because it crushed a lot of egos. So many people thought they were going to be amazing Wildstar players. When reality set in and they couldn't even complete the dungeons people bashed the game like spurned lovers. People got very butt-furious over the fact that the fact that they weren't as good as they thought they'd be. This lead to tons of people actively bashing the game as much as possible.

 

Wildstar truly is a tragedy. However I don't think Crowfall is in the same boat. They aren't making a one stop shop MMO with PvP, PvE, RP, and all of the extras you'd expect. Crowfall has a single minded focus on PvP experiences. People know what they're getting into with Crowfall.

Edited by Zybak

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I've been playing Wildstar since beta, and I do enjoy it. The community currently is much more tight and close since the lack of players has hurt the game. The F2P swing is good, but I don't know if it can really "save" the game.

 

Crowfall is doing its thing, and that's PvP. You have minor PvE, a lot of exploration, unique kingdoms, and lots of PvP. If they stick with doing this, and just working with us when we give them feedback, this game will turn into an amazing PvP game. 

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As much as games are put out there on kickstarter with a set vision, the game is inevitably bound to change some aspects. Do I believe I will be getting the game I backed? No. Do I expect a lot of the features they wanted, yes. We can already see with things like the Centaur going from DPS to support, Ranger from Ranged to stealth. In most cases in  games it isnt that the creators dont want to stick to their vision, it's just either easier to do something else (easier to code) or just better gameplay. Most designers can think of what would be cool, but since they are just throwing out words to get people excited and they themselves arent really sure what they could do a lot of features get left out. I could say I want a first person fluent, fast paced, 4k graphics game about dragons, but when the time comes to code that, I might realize "Hey, this wouldn't actually work, think of something else" and that is what most kickstarters have to do. Similar to artists/video editors/animators/etc. . You may have a vision in your head, but there are limitations to what can actually be done vs the human imagination. Everything will have limits, but I trust Artcraft to make a good game regardless of what shortcuts or limitations they might have. I mean look at the pre-alpha, is that what we were all expecting by now with about a year left to make a full game with all those features? No, but they at least made a fun mini game (hunger dome). Crowfall to me is a game doomed to be a "2016" release, but missing a few core features they wanted by launch. It might have destructible environment, a combat engine and hunger, but different game modes, EK, etc. Idk about.

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