DOOM? I Think Not.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Bayard, Jun 21, 2018.

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  1. Bayard

    Bayard Avatar

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    Fellow avatars,

    While lower than expected player numbers have resulted in layoffs, I don’t believe all is lost. Reducing expenses to keep SotA going is the right business decision, although it’s painful to lose so many wonderful and dedicated people as a result. Thank you to all who must leave. I was honored to meet many of you at the launch event and I wish you well. I’ve enjoyed the benefits of your talents and will always be grateful to you.

    I’m as disappointed as you are that we didn’t get the numbers expected but, in hindsight, I’m not surprised. I think SotA will be successful since there are many fun and addicting things about it, but it’s an acquired taste and going to take longer than anyone anticipated. The key to success is to survive long enough to slowly grow the numbers and provide enough revenue to do the things that need to be done.

    We all know some of the basic game functions need polishing and now that can happen without the pressure to ‘launch’ or release new content at the expense of those functions. I’m certain Starr will refocus the remaining team members on those things that must be polished and/or added to make the current game as fun and bug-free as possible before the episode 2 major tasks begin.

    What we should have done, what should have happened and how we could have done something better is now in the past. Let’s hope we have learned lessons from our mistakes and can move forward to a bright SotA future.

    I’m having fun and many others are as well. Are we really that different from the rest of the gaming world?
     
  2. hammadowna

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    Yes, truthfully. I see us as a group of gamers with patrician tastes. We are the upper crust of the gaming world and realize a quality product for what it is, quality. Some of the best people I've ever known have played Shroud of the Avatar. We are the greatest community in MMORPGs. Easily!

    They'll never take those good times away.
     
  3. golruul

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    Maybe I haven't played enough MMOs, but that ones I have played always had a hiring spree when an expansion/whatnot was being worked on. Then after release they would cut the staff. Then when another expansion was announced, the cycle would continue.
     
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  4. Mugly Wumple

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    Are you certain of that assumption? Granted, I'm not plugged in to all the latest buzz, but the only people I've heard this from are other players.
     
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  5. Nikko

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    I'm not convinced this is the reason...
     
  6. Bayard

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    I don't have any facts other than what Starr said and my own business-owner experience of revenue vs. expenses.
     
  7. Terrence Phillip

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    Exactly!
     
  8. Sean Silverfoot

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    That is exactly how it works. The layoffs were not unexpected for those that know how this industry works.
     
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  9. Mugly Wumple

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    Missing from this discussion is the enormous expense of creating and shipping physical goods. This large, onetime expense has to be compensated for.
     
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  10. Bowen Bloodgood

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    I'm really glad I'm not the only one who came to this conclusion. This is exactly how I read Starr's post and is only natural for the industry. You hire for what you need and when the need changes some people move on. This would be especially true for a smaller company.

    I am constantly amazed at how some people seem to just want to see and assume the worst.
     
  11. Bowen Bloodgood

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    I would assume that such an expense has been already factored into the budget for some time.
     
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  12. Kpopgurl

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    Yep absolutely normal to fire the community manager when the game is released.. especially when there is no community left :cool:
     
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  13. Sir_Hemlock

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    Lol yep.
     
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  14. Nikko

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    I think we're fine. In fact, I am glad there will apparently be a new kickstarter for the new content coming in E2+. I think it is a smart way to go, and I frankly think this game can, and will go a long way with just the generous backers that we currently have. I know that I, for one am invested, and will try to do what I can to keep the train moving on down the rails.
     
  15. evillego6

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    Until there is some other information, I will take at face value the reason Starr gave in his post
    Which isn't to support doom, gloom, or any combination of the two. If one is happy with the game, I think it is fair to assume one will continue to be happy with the game.
     
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  16. evillego6

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    This is often true. They've always estimated Episodes would release at 12-18 month intervals (key word estimated, I'm not lawyering). That would put an estimated release of episode 2 in 9 to 13 months. Releasing 1/3 of your staff including most of the designers would lead me to believe that that maintaining something close to that original schedule is very unlikely. That's not bad, estimates release scheduled are just that, estimates.
    This is usually true. I think the problem here is that Starr also said
    As you said, its typical for staff to increase when work begins on things like expansions. That isn't the case here, at least not right now.
     
  17. Woodchuck

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    I’ve always felt and known this, but you articulated it splendidly!

    Thank you!
     
  18. Woodchuck

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    Speaking in general terms, hiring and firing frequently based on product release cadence is not a good thing, imho. It’s a necessary evil in order to stay afloat, but it’s terrible for the product in question.

    You lose continuity. That’s why art work can become inconsistent. Storylines can change and feel different. And the game codebase can become a patchwork of spaghetti code.

    It’s really how products begin to slowly die, imho.
     
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  19. Kalidorn

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    This is how the industry works but If your looking at a Triple A game and they have 200 + people working on it and poof a quarter of the staff are let go no one bats an eye. Here thou you have the added advantage of people who expect it to fail. I would refer to them as the AH HA folks. AH HA something happened and it doesn't sound good! Then my personal favorite the AH HA I told you this would happen. Those looking for cracks in the armor wishing for validation that they were right and Doom was always on the horizon. SOTA is not a perfect game but for me it's my game our game the community who have faith in its game. Just pay respects to those who contributed to what we enjoy and carry on. Remember if every dollar was a hour of game play most of us have received our money's worth, I can't say that for some triple A titles in my library.
     
  20. redfish

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    I don't think its doom at all, and I agree with the OP that a lot of the priorities over the last few months were to get a working game based on the schedule and budget they had, so they could get something out the gate that felt fully functional to new players, and at the same fulfill some of their promises to Kickstarter backers.

    I do think going forward they have to think more than about polish, though. There are a bunch of polish areas I think the devs definitely need to work on, like with the UI and new user experience, but whatever problems these things have are things players put up with if they think the basic core of the game is fun. Its not that there aren't fun aspects of Shroud, its that too much of it is still just repetitive grinding, which gets stale for a lot of people very quickly, or there's too much focus on social play, which doesn't necessarily pull people in, and the market is oversaturated with themepark MMOs. I believe the devs need to get back to thinking about the vision they have for the game and how they want to present that vision to a mass audience.

    But I'm hopeful for the future of the game, because I too see this as just a shift in priorities after launch and know that the devs care about Shroud very much.
     
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