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#52 Apr 04 2012 at 1:35 AM Rating: Excellent
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How come they can move all the characters at once in an XI server merge? I am so puzzled by this decision...
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#53 Apr 04 2012 at 1:45 AM Rating: Excellent
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Xi team is not made up of monkeys ?
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#54 Apr 04 2012 at 8:41 AM Rating: Excellent
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You know, if the game was coded in China on the cheap (allegedly), I wonder if the server architecture design was outsourced too and that's why it's such a mess and they can't do anything with it.
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#55 Apr 04 2012 at 9:56 AM Rating: Excellent
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Hex good point. I never thought about that. It would explain a lot
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#56 Apr 04 2012 at 10:34 AM Rating: Excellent
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LillithaFenimore wrote:
Hex good point. I never thought about that. It would explain a lot


It really would. SE kicked in all the art, and outsourced all the technical heavy-lifting. Seems to fit the available facts.
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#57 Apr 04 2012 at 10:36 AM Rating: Good
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hexaemeron wrote:
You know, if the game was coded in China on the cheap (allegedly), I wonder if the server architecture design was outsourced too and that's why it's such a mess and they can't do anything with it.


You get what you pay for, this could very well be the reason for the "we can't do anything about it" statements. Which makes me wonder if they will be doing the same for 2.0, or will they decide to bite the bullet and do it in house? The further you get from the core, the lower the QC, the better the odds of trash slipping through the crack's.
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#58 Apr 04 2012 at 10:47 AM Rating: Excellent
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Twiddle,

Yeah I am hoping they keep everything in house as well.
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#59 Apr 04 2012 at 12:46 PM Rating: Excellent
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TwiddleDee wrote:
hexaemeron wrote:
You know, if the game was coded in China on the cheap (allegedly), I wonder if the server architecture design was outsourced too and that's why it's such a mess and they can't do anything with it.


You get what you pay for, this could very well be the reason for the "we can't do anything about it" statements. Which makes me wonder if they will be doing the same for 2.0, or will they decide to bite the bullet and do it in house? The further you get from the core, the lower the QC, the better the odds of trash slipping through the crack's.


Most of the vendors I have to work with are not forthcoming about the products they produce for us at all. They're highly secretive. They don't want to share their source code with us, they don't want us to know their database structure, they don't want us to run the product on our own servers, and don't want us to know how to even install the **** thing! It sucks as a company to maintain a product that was written by an outsourced team. I don't know if they're afraid we'll see that their code is **** or what but its often difficult to get information from them.

If SE did outsource FFXIV that might mean they have to literally start from scratch with 2.0, especially if the vendor refuses to cooperate. That would probably take a very long time. Not only are these guys writing an all new engine but they have to maintain what's out there already (probably because development is such a money sink they couldn't afford not to). They've most likely fired that vendor (let's hope so) so if that's true they couldn't call up that company and ask for support for that product anymore because they're no longer a client.

I think SE gambled and they lost big. Its surprising that the game wasn't canned shortly after launch. If it's true then the decision to outsource was the worst management decision SE could've made in FFXIV development..who knows what it would've been like had they not.
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#60 Apr 04 2012 at 12:50 PM Rating: Good
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Actually there is a very high chance that part of the game was outsourced to china, another ****** by SE that was outsourced to china was Front Mission Evolved and it bombed too <.<
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#61 Apr 04 2012 at 1:24 PM Rating: Excellent
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This is me and me alone, so feel free to rate down or flame freely. All i want to see from SE come 2.0 is a game, which i can be proud to say i play, and not have to fight of the constant comparison to a steaming pile. A game that can hold it's own ground with out people having to resolve to white knighting, to try and protect a sliver of the game's dignity. A game that leave's a lasting impression, like a peace of art, not remembered for the biggest flop after the Titanic. I don't care how they do it, they need to do it.
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#62 Apr 04 2012 at 3:01 PM Rating: Good
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Ostia wrote:
Actually there is a very high chance that part of the game was outsourced to china, another ****** by SE that was outsourced to china was Front Mission Evolved and it bombed too <.<


FM:E is actually a decent game (NOT great, but decent). It mostly bombed because people want a new Front Mission, not some weird robot FPS. If it hadn't been called Front Mission it would have done a bit better on the ratings. I know I still enjoy it from time to time because the PC title fills a personal void for me.
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#63 Apr 04 2012 at 6:36 PM Rating: Good
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Perrin, ****** Superhero wrote:
Ostia wrote:
Actually there is a very high chance that part of the game was outsourced to china, another ****** by SE that was outsourced to china was Front Mission Evolved and it bombed too <.<


FM:E is actually a decent game (NOT great, but decent). It mostly bombed because people want a new Front Mission, not some weird robot FPS. If it hadn't been called Front Mission it would have done a bit better on the ratings. I know I still enjoy it from time to time because the PC title fills a personal void for me.


It is not a decent game, FFXIII is a decent game, FM:E was not decent, from story to mechanics the game just flat out blows, now i understand the novelty, because i'm a FM fan and i also an Armored Core fan, so when i learned it would be something like Armored Core but with the awesome story of Front Mission, how could i hate it ? Well that lasted until i played it, the game first of was way to short for a Front Mission ******* The story was horrid, the gameplay mechanics actually where not horrible, it was well done by SE standards on PC, but everything else just Sucked!!

How do you go from FM:5 wish was one of the truly good solid games that SE released on it's later day's to FM:E..... That i will never understand.
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#64 Apr 04 2012 at 10:42 PM Rating: Excellent
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reptiletim wrote:
I think SE gambled and they lost big. Its surprising that the game wasn't canned shortly after launch. If it's true then the decision to outsource was the worst management decision SE could've made in FFXIV development..who knows what it would've been like had they not.


Outsourcing may or may not have been a mistake. That's really not the bottom line issue. The bottom line issue is that they took the final product they made and released it under their premium brand name hoping no one would notice how sub par it was instead of considering the irrevocable and lasting damage they could cause to their flagship series. How they could ruin a reputation they've built for over two decades so casually is beyond reason.
#65 Apr 05 2012 at 12:14 AM Rating: Default
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I've just un-quit, and i'll wait patiently and all while the friend I was returning with gets to return ahead of me! xD She's already been moved, but was inactive before I was. I can't wait to have another go at the seemingly improved game.. I will exist again soon! I like the name Rabanastre more than Durandal. :( stupid Tidus..and his..feelings../grumble..

See you..Durandal..ians..soon, considering myself brand new again.. even though i'm keeping my bits of progress. Hopefully sooner than later. I didn't see an apropriate place to post here, everything's all negative and argue-ey. It is a forum after all..
#66 Apr 07 2012 at 8:26 PM Rating: Excellent
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LillithaFenimore wrote:
UltKnightGrover wrote:
The whole character transfer process being the fail that it is is coming from faulty servers on their part. We may be on merged servers, but it's still on their admittedly dated server architecture.

Those of you who think this will happen in 2.0, I seriously doubt it, as it will be on new updated server architecture to begin with.


Fool me once shame on you...
I have a feeling 2.o will be a so shame on me situation :D



Oh I have no doubt 2.0 will be a dud, I'm waiting for GW2 to come and nail XIV's coffin for them.
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#67 Apr 08 2012 at 1:39 AM Rating: Excellent
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There is still a small chance that FFXIV might succeed with 2.0. Although one of the key factors (I have listed quite a few in the past) is that the folks that Yoshida is targeting for Version 2.0 welcomes and accepts Final Fantasy XIV-2 with open arms. I have talked extensively about some major points in the past about the MMORPG genre as a whole and today I would like to cover two additional topics.

Basic Ingredients that go into an MMORPG and the key word: Trend and give some examples. I will break up this post in 2 parts. A. Part I and II. B. Part III and IV.

Some folks have made in the past valid complaints about "The Grind" 'The Community" "The Challenge" and many others. But it goes much deeper than this.

Many folks here who have played FFXI, and especially folks in MMORPG.com, have been waiting for that next MMO to capture their hearts like the so called "first love." This is especially true if your first MMORPG game was released somewhere between 1996-2004. Companies trying to "bridge" the casual and hardcore has ultimately failed in almost every regard post 2005. One of the very few companies that still tailors (to some extent) to the hard cores is CCP. One of their upcoming MMO titles called "World of Darkness" will have perma-death for example. Everyone's definition of casual/hardcore varies and that isn't the point of this post.

The problem goes much deeper than grinding, or community, or the PR talk of having "challenging encounters" which almost has fallen flat post 2005. I think "One" of the main problems are the ingredients used in a MMORPG title: especially for 2012-2013 and beyond.

Part I: Basic Ingredients

If you add all or most of the following ingredients (especially for a large company having a team of 150-200-300 or more):

1A. P2P model or 1B. P2P model with cash shop.

2A. EverQuest I/II/WoW clone or 2B. Lineage I/II/Aion clone (Clone being defined here as taking 90% or more and making it virtually the same with subtle differences). Nothing wrong with having "some" familiarity, but you need to separate yourself from the pack unless you are an indie company.

3. Going the theme park: extremely overused route [medieval fantasy or futuristic fantasy] MMO instead of going the sand box route.

4. Generic endgame content.

5. (Optional) Bring in maybe 1 brand new thing to the table (or a feature rarely used by other online games).

If you add all that up you will have a product that will most likely fail in the long run, especially if it follows a P2P model. It reeks of the been-there-done-that. And the majority of the people leave these types of theme park MMO games in under 6 months (fatal for P2P companies that employ a large team) since it needs a considerable amount of revenue to keep them P2P. Hence the flavor-of-the-month.

Notice I: One of the key features FFXI had was that it had some elements of both a sandbox MMORPG and a theme park MMORPG.

Notice II: FFXIV had a few elements of a sand box but with barely any sand in it (let alone a working theme park).

Notice III: It may be possible that Yoshida abandons all of the sand box elements in the game and go with the theme park route solely. In my opinion if he does this for Version 2.0 then chances are that this would be a fatal step.

His view on theme park MMORPG games:

http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/threads/27142?p=390333#post390333

Notice IV: A mostly complete list of sand box games. FFXI was listed as one down the thread. I would say that FFXI had some of both. Sand box games are extremely rare these days and one that is properly funded like ArcheAge is even more rare.

http://www.mmorpg.com/discussion2.cfm/post/4626481#4626481

Notice V: Understanding the basic elements of what makes a theme park and a sandbox game. Note that there are "purists" out there and some will never agree on what makes a game either a theme park or a sandbox game, although it is possible to have both elements.

http://internetgames.about.com/od/mmorpgs/a/Mmorpgs-Sandbox-Vs-Themepark.htm


Part II: Trends


At the moment there are over 550 MMORPG games and the vast majority fall under the fantasy role playing sub genre. For this game to stay P2P for a long time, it will need a good player base that sticks with the game. We all know that you don't need 12 million or 6 million or 3 million players to keep a business afloat. However, with that said, you do need a stable population that will not have a mass exodus after several months [especially after a major patch or overhaul] (something that plagues fantasy theme park MMORPG in recent years).

I am not sure if there will be enough NA/EU players to stay for the long haul. We already know the die-hard fans will... but what about everyone else? There is nothing wrong with a niche game, but if it becomes too niche, it can and will become a problem from a business standpoint. MMORPG trends have shown that games nowadays become F2P at a much rapid rate. Compare games that came out in 1996-2004 versus 2004-2009 versus 2009-present. It used to take games a decade (or more to go F2P) then it went down to 5 years, then 4, then 3 and now some taking under 3 years to go F2P such as Aion (again talking strictly about the NA/EU market).

Edited, Apr 8th 2012 3:48am by AmbrosiaAmor
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#68 Apr 08 2012 at 1:45 AM Rating: Good
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Part III: Examples

The P2P model comes in 2 formats (generalizing here) and both have been in decline since 2005. A. $4.99-$10.99 P2P model: for all intent and purposes, this model is practically dead. Of the 40 or so that used this model, I only know of 4 that have released a game in the past 3 years. B. $12.99-$15.00 P2P model. This model has also been in serious decline. There have been around 60 or more MMORPG games that "used" to be in this range (Note: not all at the same time period).

The majority however have fallen into the following categories A. Some have closed down. B. Some use a hybrid model that have premium monthly subscriptions but also a F2P model for those that don't want to pay a monthly fee. C. Have completely transferred over to the F2P model because the company cannot sustain their initial P2P venture. Roughly 75% of those that have followed the "strictly P2P" model have become extinct (or drastically changed their model). There are less than 30 MMORPG games that follow this model and more and more are transitioning to the F2P model.

Note that the majority of P2P games that run from the standard $12.00-$15.00 range have gone F2P or are using a hybrid model with a cash shop. The P2P model that FFXI players are used to has become so unpopular that from the year 2010 till now there has only been 5 MMO games that released as P2P (there are over 550 MMORPG currently). Rift, SWTOR, Xyson, FFXIV (although everything is riding on Version 2.0 and Yoshida has said he is open to the F2P model in a recent interview) and I am sure I am missing one other game. So there are 5 in total.

Phantasy Star Online 2 just announced last week from a media conference that it will be using the F2P model with a cash shop. In a recent interview Massively had with NCSoft they asked what payment model they were going to use [regarding Blade & Soul] (since Lineage II and Aion are F2P in North America). So far they have not finalized what business model they will follow which leaves it up in the air. Recent trends have shown that many companies cannot sustain a P2P model in the long term and are forced to become F2P.

The only 2 serious contenders I see for 2012: is Guild Wars 2 (may be potentially a hybrid between sand box and theme park B2P). For 2013: I would say ArcheAge as a sand box title which is being properly funded. However; let me be the first to say that... yes... there is a chance that both titles might fail. But they have the best chances of success for the near future. If both titles fail then God or the Twelve help us all. The MMORPG genre will become 100% stale and the only thing upcoming after that is Titan. No comment.

If Guild Wars 2 can pull of the B2P model as an open world MMORPG... that may very well put (the 2nd to last) nail in the coffin of the P2P model as we know it in the genre.

The genre has become stale, in part because of these reasons.

And all of this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Part IV: Bonus -> Cartman and the Titanic

One of Cartman's silly antics with SWTOR (If you watched the episode it will make perfect sense).

http://vimeo.com/39926851

Enjoy.

I never have and will never pledge allegiance to any company. I am not emotionally attached to a computer game made of 0's and 1's. I understand that emotional attachment can occur within the community. But be forewarned: from my 13 years of MMO'ing a good portion of the folks use that as a ruse (or scapegoat) that I am doing this for my friends -> when behind that facade lies an addiction.

I also understand that each company's "totem pole structure" has the top 2% governing "almost" everything. Hey Mr. Investor. Want me to "fund" your 3rd Lamborghini? Sure no problem.

Make me a game I will enjoy in the long run and feel compelled to make a long term commitment.

In-house game you say? As if that barely makes a difference. Have a flagship title damage (and continue to do so) a company long enough and you will have (or already have) Investors do a double or a triple take. You actually think Yoshida "agreeing" and being "interested" to make the game F2P (most likely if Version 2.0 flops) came out of the blue? You need to take off that veil and stop acting as their battered house waifu. The higher ups most likely made that decision as a back-up plan: among many other things behind the scenes.

Edited, Apr 8th 2012 3:49am by AmbrosiaAmor
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#69 Apr 08 2012 at 2:34 AM Rating: Good
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Airewen, what you call "sandbox game" often enough turns out to be
a marketing excuse for developers who fail to come up with meaningful
content. The "responsibility" for the creation of content ist simply shifted
to the players; and I have yet to see a MMO where that formula works.

If I understand you correct, you would call the large scale PVP contents
of Aion, Lineage II and FFXI "sandbox elements" since they change the
whole game world to some degree with changing allegiances and region
control. All that may be part of the equation as diversive elements. The
core content should, however, in my opinion, be presented by the makers
of the game. I'm not interested in building the gameworld from templates
myself. I want to experience a story in it.

P.S.: Every time I hear that heartbreakingly naive titanic song, I cringe in pain.

Edited, Apr 8th 2012 4:37am by Rinsui
#70 Apr 08 2012 at 3:38 AM Rating: Good
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That was a nice write up Airewen. To add my own little opinion to the mix I think pending blizzards success or failure in diablo 3 with the the real money auction house I think THAT could be the new business model. Sell boxes and have a real money auction house where your customers can buy and sell items to and from each other while you take a nice little cut from each transaction. Its not an actual cash shop because blizzard isnt actually selling anything on the auction house, its strictly player to player with blizzard taking a cut of the profit.

Edited, Apr 9th 2012 2:16am by tpgsoldier
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#71 Apr 08 2012 at 3:56 AM Rating: Decent
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Its not an actual cash shop because blizzard isnt actually selling anything on the auction house, its strictly player to player with blizzard taking a cut of the profit.

I'm sure half of China would agree.
#72 Apr 09 2012 at 12:15 AM Rating: Decent
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Rinsui wrote:
Quote:
Its not an actual cash shop because blizzard isnt actually selling anything on the auction house, its strictly player to player with blizzard taking a cut of the profit.

I'm sure half of China would agree.


Oh you know the Chinese farmers are licking their chops. I cant wait to see how it works out tho, will be interesting to see if Blizzard tries to combat the Chinese.
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#73 Apr 09 2012 at 1:03 AM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
will be interesting to see if Blizzard tries to combat the Chinese


First of all, it's of course not only Chinese; and the Americans and Europeans
buying are just as guilty. But to answer your question: Parhaps Blizzard will
introduce IP-specific droprates. Or lower the droprates for a player inversely
with the time spent in-game. That way both casuals and hardcore would reap
the smae satisfaction, albeit with different investments. As long as nobody
discovers what they did, everybody will be happy.

Tbh, I actually suspect SE does something similar with the darklight and
primal weapon droprates. The more you play, the lower the droprates.
Would be a smart move to keep both casuals and hardcore busy and on
similar "levels" of success.
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