Which is why you don't see me suggesting anything on these forums, actually. I have things I'd love to see, but I'm not, especially as a non-alpha tester, going to suggest or ask people to suggest them to do changes based on my limited vision of the game. I'm excited about it, I have high hopes about most of it, and wish they would make male miqo'te and a number of other things, but that's just my wishes.
The game industry just doesn't care that much about my wishes, especially when I'm not on the design team. The games where I am, my opinion counts a bit more, but I still have to fight for what I believe in, and even if I manage to sell my idea to the whole team (doing studies, researching the topic, backing my point), at the end of the day, the development director, producers and shareholders get to say if the feature gets in or not (Based on delays, studies of RoI, etc.)
My point is, wishing for something to be done differently is the very first step to see the change. Talking about it, as you are, is the second one, but in this case, you're talking to other fans and people who either agree or disagree with you, but have about as much power over seeing the change done as yourself, which is, none at all.
If you're really serious about seeing single-names go into the game, you'll have to take that idea to square-enyx, and then someone over there (A community manager, usually) will have to tell a game designer that the community (or part of it) would like to see a change, and they'll argue about it, then the game designer might ask his lead about it, and so on. It's a long process, and I think that kind of effort should really be spent on something that has more impact on gameplay than a bunch of floating letters above some characters.
I say, let SE devote an extra week to coding it properly
Coding isn't the major problem. Script-writing is. You might currently be asking for hundreds and hundreds of hours of extra work for writers, translators and testers, yet you seem to think this is a trivial change. Believe me on this one, it's not.
I'm sorry, but that belief just strikes me as a bit...silly. The whole point of the forum is to have open discussion and debate, and suggesting ideas is par for the course. If we had somebody shut down that aspect of discussion every single time with these "It's probably really really hard to code that" and "Why do that when they could do something else" arguments, then it'd be pretty pathetic. Ideas can be generated on the forums, gain consensus, and then move to the beta, or SE's ears. It's not far-fetched.
Now in this case, I hope you can understand that I'm arguing my point largely for the purpose of entertaining myself. I like spirited debates, especially when they're well-argued and civil (as has been the case with you), this is just an extension of the whole reason I post on the forum...banter, debating, arguing...it's all just for kicks. On the name issue, I disagree with your assertions, but as I mentioned, it's really just a quibble. I think it's something that I'll put to SE if it turns out that things haven't changed a little later on, or perhaps if I get into the beta. (As I mentioned before, my belief is that this is an oversight, not a design decision, so I'm anticipating things changing anyway). I'm not sweating it either way, though.
So indulge me...I'd rather discuss the issue in-and-of-itself, not the practicality of discussing it on a forum, which I'm quite aware of.
To the other points: I'm willing to wager that both you and shintasama have more coding/script-writing experience than I do (I'm an architecture major, so that pretty much sums that up) so I'll accept that it's perhaps a more complex issue than I envision. Yet I still find myself a bit skeptical...I have a feeling that you're both playing up the difficulty to some extent. See, in my head, I'm trying to picture these other developers that already included optional last names. I just can't see them saying "Okay, we've spent the last two years completing the game's textures, script, and CG. Now all that's left is to make it so that players can choose not to have a last name. That should take us...lets see...another year and 3.4 million dollars".
How hard is this to do, exactly
? I know that I'm asking for specifics which you probably can't provide. But what are we talking? A week? A month? How large a team? Does it get scripted by a couple of guys over the course of two months, then tested?
I have no idea. But when I see that it's been done by other developers, I'm inclined to think that they did the value-judgement, and found that it was worth the effort. For them, the balance of work vs. reward suggested that it was a good idea. So why would you think that it isn't the same for SE? I doubt that it's exorbitantly harder for SE, and we've already established that the benefit and desire are there for many of us players.
So maybe that will help you understand why your hypotheticals just aren't winning me over. Decrying the massive difficulty of something that's already been done a few times isn't very convincing. You can argue that it "might" be slightly difference in SE's case because of their unique methodologies, but you wouldn't really know, would you?
Professor shintasama wrote:
I don't feel like you're being honest when you claim that though. Your assertion that "it's not a big deal" (exact internal quote now, happy?
) is contradicted by your insistence that such a minor change would make it significantly difficult to introduce yourself, unwillingness to acknowledge the amount of effort a change like that requires on SE's part, comments addressed below, and refusal to entertain other names. If you truly felt it was "not a big deal" we wouldn't be having this conversation.
I think you've misunderstood my arguing method (you can refer to my second paragraph addressing Lianda for my motivations, too). I don't believe, (and you can correct me if I'm wrong) that I said anywhere that it would be "significantly difficult" to do anything. IIRC, I said "why should I even have to have those conversations", or something to that effect. In general, it's my retort to the "you could just do xxx" argument that you guys have been posing. To that I say, "why should I even have to do xxx, when I could just do nothing and have my name". It's not an argument that hedges on a massive difference in the difficulty of doing anything. In your situation, I don't have the name I want, and have to tell people to call me something else (again, not a huge dilemma, but all I'm saying is that it's more work than doing nothing). In my situation, I have the name I want, which makes me happy, AND I don't have to do anything else.
I assure you SE is much more concerned with their continual effort than your one time effort.
You guys go to bat for SE so fervently that I'm beginning to wonder if you work for them, hehe. Well, yes. SE is sometimes
more concerned with my one-time effort than their continual effort. They're providing a service for money. The customer is always right, you know? I'm being semi-facetious here, but yeah, sometimes they're going to do things that aren't super-fun in order to provide a better product. The motivation for SE's design decisions comes from player service. They're not making this game for themselves, you know.
It comes up quite a bit when making new characters, which is the only place where your concern really comes up as well.
Perhaps I'm not understanding. Presumably two characters, each with the same first name, but one with a last name, would not count as duplicates. By my system, if I want to name my character "Blacktail", but find it's taken, then I can add a last name if I want. So what's the difference? My system is just as effective as yours, except with more choice. And how is this the only place where my concern comes up, exactly? My concern comes up exactly at the point where I can't name my character the name that I want.
I disagree, particularly when everything else in the game is structured that way.
Okay...but I'm taking this one with a grain of salt. The visual balance of "XXXXX XXXXX" is of critical importance, eh? Because as I've said before, you're still going to have your "Diahrrea McFartypants" characters. Not exactly a unified impression. Obviously, I feel that the comparative benefit of being able to name my character what I want outweighs whatever feng shui benefit having everyone named "XXXX XXXX" provides.
I disagree again, it opens up a much higher level of immersion for something that's "not a big deal" (right?) on your end.
I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree here. You say, "a much higher level of immersion". I say, "not even remotely."
I didn't say it made it impossible.
It actually makes no quantifiable difference
in the difficult of making a joke/stupid name. Unless you want to argue that it's an arduous task to write a word. Because that's the difference between one name and two. One word.
This is the best reason actually. SE needs to have design control over their product. If they tried to please every single player they'd never get anything done and the game would be a disjointed mess. The best strategy for them is to do whatever they need to do to make FFXIV a coherent piece of art while attempting to create the best gameplay experience possible. The more effort they waste on something like this the less time they have for stuff that affects the player longer than the first 2 minutes of making a character.
You say "waste", I say "worthy effort". You say "affects the player [no] longer than the first 2 minutes", I say "affects the character in every single interaction that he has for the entire game." I also bolded the section that would benefit from letting me name my character what I want. Because see, I would enjoy that. As would many others. And as paying customers, SE is apt to consider such a service, provided that the effort/reward ratio works out. You guys are arguing that it "might" not (it's all hypothetical, though). I'm arguing that, because it's been done in other games, it can't be THAT hard.
I did, it's not even as much ad hominem as "'you' (blue in this case) are making a fool out of yourself by getting upset and going on about how everyone that disagrees with you is an idiot, etc."
Not directly addressed to you either. I was generally referring to that side of the argument (and I apologize for lumping you in with some of those posters, but at that point you main arguments weren't different from some of theirs even though you were much more civil about it), you'll notice the bulk of that paragraph I addressed the "no good reason" posters, which was a question you hadn't asked until later.
I'm happy to drop it, then. Thank you for being civil.
and? There are plenty of things in other MMOs that aren't good ideas or efficient or immersive or even coherent. "It can be done" doesn't make it a good idea. For something like this the potential gain in consumer retention/happiness to effort exerted ratio is horrible.
That's a real reach on your part though. Unless I'm mistaken, you have no quantifiable knowledge of how difficult this would be for SE to do. And your assumption that other companies went through some arduous and frivolous labor of love to make surnames optional, just to achieve some negligible benefit to their player base, is a LOT to swallow. So no, I don't even remotely agree with your assertion that the "retention/happiness to effort exerted ratio is horrible" claim.
speaking of ignoring my argument/oversimplification/exaggeration......
As of right now, no, I don't subscribe to your assertions about the difficulty of scripting this. My paragraphs addressed to Lianda in the beginning pretty much sum up how I feel about it.
EDIT: I just finished my studio final critique, so I'm in a good mood. Rate-ups to everyone for a good debate! Edited, Apr 23rd 2010 9:30am by Eske Edited, Apr 23rd 2010 9:33am by Eske