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Wizards of the Coast Declares Gleemax Site a Critical Failure

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the rolled-a-natural-one dept.

Role Playing (Games) 242

In a recent blog post, Wizards of the Coast Vice President of Digital Gaming Randy Buehler announced that they were killing their Gleemax social networking site. Originally designed to create a central hub where gamers could meet, discuss, and play games online, it has thus far been unable to deliver on the grandiose promises made at launch. "The mistake that I made, however, was in trying to push us too far too fast. I still think the vision for Gleemax is awesome: creating a place on the web where hobby gamers (or lifestyle gamers or thinking gamers, or whatever you want to call us) can gather to talk about games, play games, and find people to play games with. But I've come to realize that the vision was too ambitious. We've made progress down about ten different paths over the past eighteen months, but we haven't been able to reach the end of any of them yet."

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I can just imagine the site. (5, Funny)

grub (11606) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740677)


Wow, that site sounded like it'd be a lot of fun.

Posted by: DarkEliteAvenger1975

Single, Human male. 33 years old, lives in mom's basement.
Prefers slim, female Dark Elves who are as flexible as a well crafted Elvish bow.

Must like Cheetos, pizza, and Mountain Dew.

Sorry, no Liches need respond.

Please include a clear picture of your dice in replies.

It failed... (4, Insightful)

RingDev (879105) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741019)

After 2 years of being in 'alpha' status with nothing spent on advertising...

hmmm. Imagine that.

-Rick

Re:It failed... (1)

Bigbutt (65939) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741249)

Not only that, but apparently not especially easy to find (based on others comments as I don't hit the WotC site).

[John]

Re:I can just imagine the site. (3, Funny)

Ukab the Great (87152) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741085)

And one day he'll learn that stats "36-24-36" don't mean "hitpoints, mana, and dexterity".

Re:I can just imagine the site. (5, Funny)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741609)

Thirty Six Deterity!? Holy Jesus, if this is D&D, that lady can MOVE.

Re:I can just imagine the site. (3, Funny)

Talderas (1212466) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741693)

Nah, she's just an epic character that started with 18 dex, got to level 40 and put all 8 stat boosts into dexterity and uses a +10 Gloves of Dexterity that cost her a cool 1,000,000 gold that she earned through prostitution and dancing.

Filthy dark elf bards.

Re:I can just imagine the site. (3, Funny)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741729)

level 40

Oh, ok. So she can just outdance Olidammara.

Re:I can just imagine the site. (1)

Talderas (1212466) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741811)

She can out dance most gods and goddess probably, except those deities get the natural 20 on their dice roll, so she only has to roll a 8 or better on her Perform: Dance check to beat the deity.

Re:I can just imagine the site. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24742223)

Oooh, baby.

In this case, I think I'll cast Lvl. 8 Cock of the Infinite.

I put on my robe and wizard hat.

Re:I can just imagine the site. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24742227)

And the deity still says go away, you're a rock and tells you to roll a new character...

Re:I can just imagine the site. (1)

bughunter (10093) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742265)

No, assuming she's a Rolemaster [wikipedia.org] grognard, those are her Presence, Self Discipline, and Empathy stats.

The permanents, at that.

Interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740685)

...no wait, the other thing - tedious.

Already Exists (4, Funny)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740697)

An online hub for gamers to meet already exists. It's called "World of Warcraft."

Re:Already Exists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740763)

OR kongregate.com

Re:Already Exists (1)

daedae (1089329) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740995)

Except that Kongregate is alternately full of teenagers bringing their drama onto chat (entirely too many trying to be their very own gossip girls), annoying preteens begging for everybody to be their friend, or a combination of the two insisting that 20-year-olds should not be on Kongregate.

Re:Already Exists (3, Funny)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741455)

Oh. Barrens chat.

(Throw in some sex and it's Goldshire).

Re:Already Exists (1)

Fozzyuw (950608) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741529)

Except that Kongregate is alternately full of teenagers bringing their drama onto chat (entirely too many trying to be their very own gossip girls), annoying preteens begging for everybody to be their friend, or a combination of the two insisting that 20-year-olds should not be on Kongregate.

HUH? People read the chat box? I'm too busy playing the games. =)

Re:Already Exists (5, Funny)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740777)

He mentioned "thinking gamers", this would clearly exclude WoWers (I kid, I kid)

Re:Already Exists (5, Funny)

vux984 (928602) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740961)

An online hub for gamers to meet already exists. It's called "World of Warcraft."

If you are playing WoW and think you are a gamer with other gamers, by all means, PLEASE just keep on doing what you are doing. You are where you belong.

I quite like the fact that WoW acts like a honey pot, keeping you entertained, and away from the rest of us. Ooops... was that out loud? ;)

Re:Already Exists (2, Insightful)

Uniquitous (1037394) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741159)

Before we hate on the WoW'ers too much, let's bear in mind that we dyed-in-the-wool Real Gamers have many more similarities with them than differences. Who would you rather hang with: a WoW'er, or an American Idol devotee? That said, WoW has had a deleterious effect on D&D. Screw Blizzard, and screw 4th edition. :-(

Re:Already Exists (3, Funny)

afabbro (33948) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741291)

or an American Idol devotee

Depends on her stats.

Re:Already Exists (2, Funny)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741385)

That question remains in the air, but the answer to "Who would I rather smell?" has a clear cut winner. ;)

Re:Already Exists (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741631)

and screw 4th edition. :-(

Screw Change! Screw improvements to game play! Screw the fact that 4E actually did the right thing and decoupled roleplay from game mechanics, allowing the PLAYERS the ability to do anything they want in roleplay terms instead of holding their hands and saying "ok, if you do this, this is what happens". Like the previous versions of D&D.

Thank Behamut that 4E actually put imagination and creativity back into the players hands. Though, there's nothing wrong with liking a game that holds your hand, but there's something wrong with player hating something just because it's different.

Re:Already Exists (2, Interesting)

Shinmizu (725298) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742163)

As a WoW-player that refuses to migrate to 4th edition, I'm laying the blame squarely on Wizards of the Coast. Hell, most of the members of my WoW guild refuse to migrate to 4th edition as well. (Some of us are going with Paizo's Pathfinder, which is a bit of a spiritual successor to 3rd edition.)

Re:Already Exists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741269)

I don't quite understand how you judge WoW players. Because it doesn't involve rolling a dice, or? It is still an RPG game even though it has quite limited options for an in-depth role-playing experience.

Hooray snobbery! (5, Funny)

Asmor (775910) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741295)

Drop the snobbery. All that does is make you look bitter.

Do you really think your D&D character who you've been playing off and on for 30 years since BECMI is so much more legitimate than someone's Tier 6-geared character with thousands of hours of play time? Hint: it's not.

Disclaimer: I play WoW. I have 2 70s, neither of which are geared for raiding (yet...). I also run a weekly D&D game and I started a board game club at my college. So if you want to try and argue I'm not a gamer... Well, go right ahead. I don't need your validation.

Oh, and my penis is HUGE (in Japan).

Re:Hooray snobbery! (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741497)

Only one game a week and you claim to be a gamer?

ok, well mine is every other week, so you are more of a gamer than me anyway...

Re:Hooray snobbery! (5, Interesting)

vux984 (928602) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741985)

Drop the snobbery. All that does is make you look bitter.

I think you have soft spot. It was mostly a joke.

Do you really think your D&D character who you've been playing off and on for 30 years since BECMI is so much more legitimate than someone's Tier 6-geared character with thousands of hours of play time? Hint: it's not.

Seriously though. The thing about WoW is that you can't lose. You really can't. You can't even really experience a setback. The worst that happens is that you don't move forward for a day, and even that only happens at endgame. You also don't need to even think about teamwork until endgame. This is a big part of what its appeal is to a lot of people, and why it sprung ahead of its predecessors like EQ.

This is why I think WoW is equivalent to MMO pablum. In order to advance all you have to do is show up; it doesn't exactly require tactics, strategy, problem solving, imagination, mathematics, or any other cranial exercise, and their is simply zero risk of ending the day behind where you started.

Disclaimer: I play WoW. I have 2 70s, neither of which are geared for raiding (yet...).

Oh, so you should know what I'm talking about then. Great.

I also run a weekly D&D game and I started a board game club at my college. So if you want to try and argue I'm not a gamer... Well, go right ahead. I don't need your validation.

Everyone likes to slum around from time to time. And besides, its not like you -can't- think in WoW, its just that you don't have to.

FWIW I played WoW for a while too, and a friend and I quite enjoyed doing instances as a duo while they still conned yellow using gear we quested or looted or crafted ourselves as we levelled up. It really was quite challenging, and fun. But most people we saw just had a much higher level friend come along, or brought a full group of twinks, or just ground xp solo and bought all their gear in the AH or got it from guildmates, etc.

And yeah, you do have to up your game as a raider, and as you approach the raid endgame, but to do that you also have to pretty much give up on having any life outside of WoW, which is pathetic. And even then the biggest requirements of the top tier guilds is being able to show up and follow instructions.

Oh, and my penis is HUGE (in Japan).

Um. Thanks. I'm flattered. But I'm just not interested.

What is the best way to turn down unsolicited gay advances as a happily married heterosexual male anyway? Be a good topic for 'ask slashdot'...after all who better than a bunch of socially inept guys to give advice for socially awkward situations? ;)

Re:Already Exists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741379)

If WoW is a honeypot, then M:tG is a full-on crackhouse. You couldn't even play one sealed tourney a month for $15.

Re:Already Exists (1)

Sandbags (964742) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741541)

I'd post a smart comment, but I'm laughing so hard my brain won't work! Mod parent up!

Re:Already Exists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741877)

I'm laughing so hard my brain won't work!

You have to consider that that may also be due to a pre-existing condition.

Boardgamegeek (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741009)

www.boardgamegeek.com
'nuff said.

Re:Already Exists (2, Insightful)

Berkyjay (1225604) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741863)

An online hub for gamers to meet already exists. It's called "World of Warcraft."

First of all, not all "Gamers" play WoW. And not all WoW players can be considered "Gamers". Besides, WoW has been a horrible influence on Wizards of the Coast. All they see is dollar signs when they look at WoW and so they go and try to make all of their products into WoW clones. Thus they are ruining games that used to be great like D&D.

Re:Already Exists (1)

dwiget001 (1073738) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741991)

EverQuest 2 player: What is this "WoW" of which you speak? Is it an in-game crafted item or fabled drop off a raid zone mob?

Re:Already Exists (1)

santiago (42242) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741955)

In all seriousness, it does exist. For the sort of audience WotC was going for, the people are already on RPG.net, ENWorld.org, or BoardGameGeek.com. Gleemax was a set of mediocre forums and some blogs without any decent way to browse through them. Of course it failed to attract the people that were busy discussing games elsewhere already.

hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740729)

that sound like it could be kinda cool. In true social networking style it could never live up to the hype.

Re:hmm (3, Insightful)

Scarletdown (886459) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740853)

They did it backwards. Typically, you are supposed to underpromise and overdeliver.

you called it what??? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740735)

I'm sorry. There's a reason you failed. You called it Gleemax.
Now, the internet is full of stupidly named stuff - a side-effect of trademark law, particularly in the American Corporate Reich, sorry "USA" - but gleemax is really dumb. Like having a disgusting headless dog with a leg bone jammed down its neck as your mascot dumb.

Feminine sanitary towel with gentle vibrating action? Real estate that comes with free MDMA ? Either way, gleemax is a terrible name.

Re:you called it what??? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740829)

No kidding. "Ask your doctor if Gleemax is right for you. Side effects include constipation, impotence, rash, and 401(k) depletion."

Re:you called it what??? (1)

Naughty Bob (1004174) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740901)

"Gleemax"

The discerning self-abuser's tissue of choice.

Re:you called it what??? (2, Informative)

cthulu_mt (1124113) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741183)

They named the site after an inside joke about a giant "brain in a jar" that runs development.

Who the hell in Marketing thought that was a good idea?

Name? (0, Troll)

sjonke (457707) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740747)

Crapmax would have done just as well

Re:Name? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740869)

Crapmax would have done just as well

HAW HAW HAW! Man, you're almost as funny as Ellen DeGeneres. Did you have to work on that geniusly comedic gift of yours, or were you just born with it?

Re:Name? (2, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740907)

Maybe it is a take on the drug name (Gleemonex) from the movie 'Brain Candy'?
Slogan: Gleemonex makes it feel like it's 72 degrees in your head...all the time.

Re:Name? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24742057)

"It's made from monkey cum"

-Biggot Cabbie

Re:Name? (1)

boyko.at.netqos (1024767) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742269)

Great. Now I can't think of D&D without thinking of transvestites.

Aargh! Even worse! Now I can't think of transvestites without thinking of D&D!

Re:Name? (1)

worthawholebean (1204708) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742307)

It is actually a long-running joke on the Wizards website. Supposedly it's a brain in a vat that actually runs everything.

Fear of Girls (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740787)

Gamers don't want a social networking site - it's already been shown that we have a fear of girls [slashdot.org] .

surprised it took them this long (1)

kenosaga (879765) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740809)

as if anyone had any doubt with that horrid green and stupid brain it would fail? That site was designed to appeal to 5-9 year olds, not D&D Gamers.

The problem is... (1)

DanWS6 (1248650) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740825)

The world wide web does no have enough social networking sites. It simply needs more. =D

I never heard about this one. As someone who plays games I don't see a need for a social networking site to talk to other people about games, I'd rather just play them.

Re:The problem is... (1)

Scarletdown (886459) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741043)

In City of Heroes, we already have at least 2 social networking sites in-game:

Pocket D [wikia.com] and Atlas Plaza [wikia.com] .

Re:The problem is... (1)

FireIron (838223) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741639)

You forgot Portal Court.

Welcome to 2003, WotC (5, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740827)

Back then this COULD have taken off. But today, with a billion "social networking" sites (read: you make the content, I make the profit) around, hammering out yet another one is about as sensible as creating the better mousetrap or the better search engine. Yes, you could succeed. But the chances are so slim that you're better off trying something else. Why? Because EVERYONE does it. Everyone is out there creating the next better social networking page. With this bell or that whistle, but basically, in their core, they're just the same that myspace and its copycats have been for years.

How about trying something new instead of trying to recreate something that has been done so many times over that nobody cares anymore?

And no, I don't know what "something new" would be. If I did, I'd probably create it and become rich myself.

Re:Welcome to 2003, WotC (1)

Nymz (905908) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741139)

I don't know, it sounds like a pretty good idea. Combining smaller gaming communities, into a larger one, so that migrating between your favorite games is easier, and you don't lose you online friends.

I was a big MTG player for the first 2 years, when it was massive fun. But when focus shifted completely to 'buying' new decks, in order to play less interesting sealed games, and eliminated 'building' new decks, in order to play more interesting constructed tourneys, they lost me.

Re:Welcome to 2003, WotC (1)

SirGarlon (845873) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741995)

How about trying something new instead of trying to recreate something that has been done so many times over that nobody cares anymore?

Industry leaders are not good at that, and Wizards of the Coast is no exception. The only really compelling idea that came out of WotC was Magic: The Gathering back in the early 1990's. (WotC didn't invent D&D, they bought TSR, the company that did.)

Re:Welcome to 2003, WotC (1)

Haoie (1277294) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742071)

I don't see what's wrong with a niche social networking site.

Besides the fact that it'll be niche, perhaps?

Gleemax (0, Redundant)

mfh (56) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740843)

Terrible name, imho. Better to spend the energy/resources on their other sites.

Buelher is ruining WotC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740847)

Randy Buelher is an idiot and has ruined WotC. MTGO, D&Di, Gleemax; they are all getting ruined by this idiot. Get him off the web!

Re:Buelher is ruining WotC (1)

rukcus (1261492) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742235)

You have no idea what you're talking about. Buelher was put into management because he can lead the teams much better than the rest. You should be blaming the Marketing Department. He actually helped reshape the R&D cycle to become more streamlined and better in-game play.

MTGO's woes are blamed on a tiny programming team that can't do databases. They have 5 people working on the program. Tops.

Gleemax is just another example of the same marketing demon running the company. There is little need to appease the current ranks of players because they are hooked. Instead they focus their direction at new players with geeky gimmicks such as this piece of dreck.

Seriously though.... (5, Funny)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740855)

Trying to establish a name as a place where idiots can blather mindlessly about irrelevant(though perhaps entertaining) subjects on the Internet?

That's not a crowded marketplace at all.

Buehler? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740865)

Buehler?

Makes sense (4, Insightful)

aztektum (170569) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740871)

They roll out Tiny Adventures [facebook.com] for Facebook (which is still having some issues it seems) then drop their social site. I wonder if this is part of a plan to focus on "apps" or ways of connecting to the already established bases of MySpace/Facebook?

1) I'm sure more than a few D&D/P&P RPG fans are on those sites already.
2) More visibility. Running your own site dedicated to just RPGs will only attract a certain crowd.

Regarding #2, I'm slightly above "casual" P&P RPG follower, but I hadn't really even heard of their site until this /. posting.

Re:Makes sense (1)

Koiu Lpoi (632570) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741681)

Frankly, before this Slashdot posting, my reaction to gleemax has been "Oh, I have to search site:forums.gleemax.com now instead of site:forums.wizards.com, except nothing's different. How stupid of them."

Am I the only one... (2, Funny)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740877)

...who remembers a slashdot-like site named Planet Crap, where gamers, game webmasters, and game developers gathered, posted, discussed, flamed, and trolled?

I'd say 1999 called and wants its idea back!

Re:Am I the only one... (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741895)

You do know the difference between a discussion site and a social networking site, right?

Re:Am I the only one... (0)

daveime (1253762) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742161)

Yes, a discussion site allows you to discuss things ...

A social networking site also allows you to discuss things, but then you can pretend that everyone involved in the conversation is your "friend", and then compare your "popularity as a member of the human race" by how many "friends" have exchanged 12 bytes of information with you in the last month.

I find it creepy how goddamn shallow these sites^H^H^H^H^Hpeople are, when someone replying "lol" to one of your posts qualifies them as "your friend".

The Slogan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740897)

Gleemax makes it feel like it 72 degrees in your head... all the time! [imdb.com]

wrong mistake (5, Insightful)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740931)

The mistake that I made, however, was in trying to push us too far too fast

More likely the reverse was true. Not enough promotion (to the sort of people who would use it) or that they were turned off by what it offered, or how it was presented.

You can never have too much progress, unless of course you outrun the capabilities of your website providers or programmers.

Re:wrong mistake (5, Insightful)

Boogaroo (604901) | more than 6 years ago | (#24740973)

Yeah, I never heard of it until today. Sounds like they did a great job letting people know about it.

Re:wrong mistake (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741063)

The problem wasn't in promoting the service. The problem was in BUILDING the service. They never had an official launch because, in part, they kept changing directions on what the main focus of the service was going to be.

Re:wrong mistake (1)

pluther (647209) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741821)

Too bad there isn't some kind of internationally distributed magazine, read primarily by pencil and paper style gamers, that they could have advertised it in...

that's what USENET is for (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24740947)

ya schmucks. well, it was until *they* killed it. I fscking HATE these frickin' web forums.

talk amongst yourselves (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741025)

topic of discussion:

gleemax is neither glee nor max.
discuss.

And they missed to target their top audience (4, Insightful)

anomnomnomymous (1321267) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741031)

Before this, I'd never heard of Gleemax, and apparently, so hasn't Slashdot:
I find it quite weird that there doesn't seem to be a post about Gleemax in Slashdot's history [slashdot.org] : I wonder how many other sites they missed out on.

Not enough crunch (2, Insightful)

Cyphertube (62291) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741045)

Having written, albeit small bits, in the gaming industry, we often talk about crunch, the real rules and meat that you can really grip onto and take and run with. I mean, the backstory is nice on some products, but the crunch is the stuff I can use as a player or gamemaster.

Gleemax never had much in crunch. It was all fluff and drove me crazy. It had a crappy name. (Seriously, the concept of maximum glee brings up either the image of a hyperactive 5-year-old or a massive of singing sweater vest people - either way, not attractive.)

It also seemed to try to be everything to everybody, which is a failure.

They SHOULD have tried a scaled back thing oriented towards a product line and then expanded slowly to guarantee enough content and interaction. The way it was, when I first checked it out, was that I couldn't do anything, and there was rarely enough new to see, so I stopped coming back.

And seriously, if I play an MMORPG, then I already HAVE a community. I don't need a second. I play a few single/multiplayer games (Civ IV, NWN2, etc.) and one MMORPG (EVE).

Saturated Market (5, Informative)

kingmundi (54911) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741089)

They had well entrenched websites already that did a lot of what they initially offered.

www.enworld.org though simple, has a plethora of reviews, forums, news, chat

www.paizo.com was able to get interest because they carried more than just wizards of the coasts products.

It's a tough market I would think. People that want to socialize in an alternate setting probably use something like second life. People that want to mindlessly kill stuff and gather equipment and power game probably play warcraft.

Re:Saturated Market (2, Informative)

Bigbutt (65939) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741299)

And http://www.rpg.net/ [rpg.net] seems to attract quite a few gamers including an entire section just for DnD folks.

http://www.penandpapergames.com/ [penandpapergames.com] is supposed to be a general gamer and locater site but much of the conversation is DnD related.

[John]

No Way To Start A Communiy Like Killing It (4, Insightful)

JeremyBanks (1036532) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741141)

For those who weren't members of the site, when they started their "Gleemax" project they replaced large numbers of the board staff, whom most members got along with well and respected, with new staff that nobody knew. The moderation process was changed, making it stunningly ineffective, and problems were handled in absurdly poorly-thought-out ways.

Wizards of the Coast seems to be trying to do as much as possible to damage itself online. Magic Online v3 brought a new client that almost everyone hated, has compatibility problems galore and was still delayed for something like two years.

It's pathetic.

Re:No Way To Start A Communiy Like Killing It (2, Insightful)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741889)

Reading Tea Leaves...

.

Okay, time for some ancient history. Let's begin. Who remembers back when our beloved New Zork Times was running articles about something called Cornerstone a completely worthless database program that nobody was ever going to use? Hmm... it's possible some aren't familiar with the story, so I present: Down From the Top of Its Game [mit.edu] . Long story short, Infocom lost huge amounts of money, got absorbed into Activision and disappeared into the ether. Why? Because of destructive, incompetent meddling managment.

Closer to home for a D&D story, remember when TSR started publishing The Honeymooners boardgame and Rocky and Bullwinkle [everything2.com] ? Put it another name, has anyone here heard the name Lorraine Williams [gamespy.com] or wondered why Gary Gygax stopped being involved in D&D?

All I know, is that there have been some... well... odd things coming out of Wizards lately. A ridiculous new alignment system, obviously created in the 9 Hells (the greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was to convince people that Lawful Evil doesn't exist). A new D&D system that seems to want to replicate MMORPGs on the tabletop, and a concerted attempt to utterly kill the OGL [wikipedia.org] which someone over there must think was a huge mistake. Well, we'll see where they go. I had some dire predictions following the OWOD apocalypse, but I think White Wolf is still chugging along....

Of course, I'm an odd duck anyway. As a kid, I collected RPGs but hardly ever played them. A deranged monomania that has never made any sense to me. Still, I'm fascinated by watching gaming corporations die... or even subsidiaries.... so I'll be keeping my eye on this.

Poor design (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741337)

There seems to be a fairly sizable community there though so I don't know exactly what the problem is.

With that said, their website is very poorly designed. As a newb going to the site I was totally confused. Too much crap all over the screen and clicking on stuff sends me to various different websites, very confusing. There is an overuse of graphical content, little consistency and poor organization.

As a new person coming across the site I can't even figure out what the point or purpose of it is and I'm not going to spend a bunch of effort learning about some random site that looks like an pop-up banner ad.

huh? what? (1)

Chicken04GTO (957041) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741381)

This is the first ive even heard of it. Try marketing maybe?

is there (1)

trrwilson (1096985) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741393)

Is there a successful version of this? I've been interested in getting into some Pen and Paper RPGs, but I don't know anyone else who plays, and I've not found where geeks congregate in my town.

It's called Obsidian Portal (2, Informative)

SageinaRage (966293) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741453)

Obsidian Portal [obsidianportal.com]

It was set up and running by a friend of mine, before gleemax even launched. It's the same kind of blog/wiki/forum for gamers, except for it's meant for all kinds of games, and it's actually a good useful site.

Re:is there (1)

Bigbutt (65939) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741635)

You might try http://www.penandpapergames.com./ [www.penandpapergames.com] The site is orientated to be a gamer/gm locater service and does a reasonable job of it.

[John]

MtGO V3 = CRAP (2, Insightful)

Butisol (994224) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741407)

Magic Online version 3 was a critical failure too. If you ever want an example of a project gone wrong, Magic Online version 3 is finest example of ineptitude you'll ever find. Honestly, it is a piece of crap. The only reason anyone still plays Magic Online is because they're addicted to Magic and will put up with the slow, buggy, ugly UI, as well as the lag, instability, crashes, and whatever else went wrong. Wizards of the Coast isn't supposed to be a software development house. That's what you get when you have useless pro-tour Magic players doing your development.

Guys!!! (1)

DrLov3 (1025033) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741409)

You all seem to have miss the most important point about the headline : "Critical Fail" !!

The crux of the problem: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741461)

Hiring gamers to do work on things that involve games. Good luck getting anything productive out of them.

Phat Yaffle / Signature Devices (1)

nyargh (98865) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741557)

There's a site by Signature Devices called Phat Yaffle [phatyaffle.com] (I know... Marketing must have staggered into the office from the prior night's coke binge just long enough to come up with that one) that is doing its best to actually integrate gameplay results into a commerce / community site. Kinda like an e-Chuky Cheeze with the tickets for prizes, but with less disturbing animatronics.

Perhaps more interestingly, the company has released a FOSS (as in beer) cross-platform SDK called Elemental Engine II [phatyaffle.com] which ties into the site, and distribution network for said games developed w/ their SDK. The developer gets a cut if the game makes money, otherwise it is playable/downloadable on the PY site. Neat concept, and technically much further along than a lot of other sites.

Working forum? (1)

residieu (577863) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741633)

Did they put in a usable forum? Their previous site had a user discussion forum that spent years without a working search function. They'd tease about it coming soon, and occasionally turn it on only to have it crash their database.

I never actually looked at Gleemax, mostly because I haven't been able to muster much interest in 4th edition. How is their forum software working?

No (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741719)

The problem with this is simply the fact it wasn't needed and, to make the move Wizards "archived" (see: deleted) all their older, popular forums. ENworld and the RGPA had active forums (which were both heavily supported/owned by wizards at the time). On top of that, Gleemax didn't support older or non-wizards of the coast games. I'm not saying they should support their competitor's directly, but little things like being able to list that you also play L5R or Pokemon would have drawn more people than just those who play only "hasbro owned games".

Remember arcadium.com? (1)

stevegee58 (1179505) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741725)

We're talking late nineties here. Before the phrase "social networking" was invented there was arcadium.com, a so-called "affinity networking" site for gamers.

It ended up being used just like myspace and facebook are used now. There was little or no gaming discussion, just lots of teenagers and cyber-sex.

The Community Is Already Out There (1)

GMFTatsujin (239569) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741761)

And they're very happy with their own blogs, forums, and ways of doing things, thank you very much. Sites like Unclebear [unclebear.com] , Nuketown [nuketown.com] , and Musings of a Chatty DM [chattydm.net] already have a venerable history and vibrant user bases. Grassroots, professional, and otherwise: Gleemax was a Johnny-Came-Never compared to the great sites that are already around.

If you're looking for a way to concentrate all that good RPG chatter, look no further than your own RSS reader.

Or better yet, just plug into the RPG Bloggers Network [rpgbloggers.com] . They've done all the RSS congregation for you.

Yes. Total shill. Right here.

Pussy Nazi Sez (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24741795)

No pussy for YOU!

problems (1)

j0nb0y (107699) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741827)

I was actually excited about Gleemax when it was first announced. I haven't tried to use it recently, but when it was first launched it was lacking many key features.

When it launched it didn't even have a "friend" feature. Hopefully this was fixed by now.

What it really needed though was a way to list games you played, and a way to search for other gamers on the site by region and game. The site was supposed to be targeted to people who play traditional games (pen&paper, tabletop, board, card, etc). These gamers can't really play over the Internet, so they need to meet people in real life to play. A solid site to meet other people to play these games with would have been huge.

Re:problems (1)

trongey (21550) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742289)

...The site was supposed to be targeted to people who play traditional games (pen&paper, tabletop, board, card, etc). These gamers can't really play over the Internet...

Uh, people have been playing these games over the internet since before there was a www.

Wow, that's ugly (1)

richtaur (1234738) | more than 6 years ago | (#24741919)

Not having heard about it before it was declared a failure is a bad thing, but even if I had, I wouldn't have used it because it's *hideous*! I'd prefer using something bland like Craigslist over that gaudy design any day.

trolls (1)

GetTragic (21640) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742097)

I can't see this working, trolls would level up too fast.

Is it really possible? (3, Interesting)

Stiletto (12066) | more than 6 years ago | (#24742129)

Forget games, for a minute.

Is it really possible, here in 2008, to "create a central hub for XYZ on the web where XYZ-ers can gather to talk about XYZ, do XYZ, and find people interested in XYZ" and have it actually work? Does it work to start from scratch and plan such an empire, or do you have to have the patience to let these kind of sites naturally evolve?

Is it even possible to have a "central hub" of _anything_ on the web? What's wrong with this thinking?

This is old (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24742157)

He made this comment quite a long time ago now. Almost a month I think. The D&D community has known that the site was going to shut down for a long time.

My apologies... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24742201)

Regarding the name, Gleemax.

I have to apologize, since I'm the one who came up with it. However, I neither work for Wizards of the Coast, or for Hasbro.

I came up with the name as a joke in a rec.games.deckmaster post in the late 90s in response to someone who asked who was running WotC. A few folks I knew at WotC (and many more that I did not) evidently took the name and ran with it as a long time internal joke. You can still find my original post creating the name in the archives on Google Groups.

So if you hate the name, blame me, except recognize that I never intended it for use as a Social Networking site, I intended it as a one off joke post on Usenet.

Jeff Franzmann

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