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DDO's Turbine Partners With Notorious SuperRewards

Soulskill posted about 4 years ago | from the fill-out-this-survey-to-become-two-percent-stronger dept.

Advertising 121

Zarrot writes "In the next step for their Free 2 Play model, Turbine Entertainment, publisher of Dungeon and Dragons: Online, Lord of the Rings: Online, and Asheron's Call, has partnered with notorious 'lead generation company' SuperRewards. Initial testing by forum users shows that just accessing the page without clicking on any offers sends the user's email and game login in clear text to SuperRewards. Reports of new spam and fresh malware infections on test systems are already being reported on the company's forums. Is the Zynga business model the future of Internet gaming?"

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121 comments

Nope, WoW is (0, Troll)

SomeJoel (1061138) | about 4 years ago | (#31840188)

"Is the Zynga business model the future of internet gaming?" No sir, the unmitigated success of WoW is what everyone is going to try (almost always unsuccessfully) to copy for many years to come.

Re:Nope, WoW is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840340)

To celebrate this partnership, Turbine will be equipping Asheron's Call characters with a complementary pyrite scarab.

Re:Nope, WoW is (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840452)

Torch girl of the marshes
Her kiss is a whip of the moon
Dawn's damsels are dancing
To the hum of her sunny young tune
Oh whoa whoa, yeah-eah yeah
Elemental Child
Oh whoa whoa, yeah-eah yeah
Elemental Chi-yi-yild

Hold the glove of gold behind you
Love the glove of Truth.

Gems hemmed in the heart's head
The shield of the rivers is hers
She one told me to think white
And the night disappeared like a bird
Oh whoa whoa, yeah-eah yeah
Elemental Child
Oh whoa whoa, yeah-eah yeah
Elemental Chi-yi-yild

Hold the glove of gold behind you
Love the glove of Truth.

Re:Nope, WoW is (1)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | about 4 years ago | (#31840600)

I knew WOW was the future of gaming when I first heard of the Compuserve game for C64. Although I figured it'd be played like Pool of Radience, Final Fantasy 1, or Wasteland.

There's no real points in life for a guy who predicts the future like that. You almost have to do the whole thing solo. And boy did I try. If you want the years to fly by fruitlessly, try cramming yourself in a room and writing a MMOG solo.

My current game is going to be on the Zynga model, but people getting into the game accept it as the payment. I think mixing subscription play with micropayments is sort of double dipping that players won't appreciate.

Re:Nope, WoW is (3, Interesting)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | about 4 years ago | (#31841586)

I think mixing subscription play with micropayments is sort of double dipping that players won't appreciate.

It's not so much that as that it slowly erodes the actual gameplay, let alone the immersion. I play this game [nexustk.com], and ever since they've added an item shop, people are wandering around Ancient Korea with sunglasses, because they can charge for them (useless item, pure decoration) in the item shop. The idea was that this wouldn't affect gameplay, but of course, it creates games all its own -- there's now an official runway competition to decide whose avatar has the best style, which inevitably entails lots of item-shop items. They've also recently (and kind of inevitably) introduced things which directly affect gameplay, like extra storage for crafting items...

Now, the problem is, I don't know if this actually makes a difference in the business sense. I mean, as a player, I absolutely appreciate what you're doing, but I'm also going to keep playing Nexus because of all the stuff I have there, and the community I'm involved with -- basically, because of network effect and a strange sort of lock-in that all MMOs inherently have.

Re:Nope, WoW is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31843974)

you'll quit. I used to play a game named The Realm Online. That game has been dead longer than most slashdotters have been alive. It is arguably the first graphical fantasy mmorpg (it was the first with a playable open beta but another released to the shelves first).

In any case. I played the game for a couple years because of the game, then played the game for another 5-6yrs because of friends and community. But in the end I bailed. And slowly but surely the others were trickling out as well.

The effect you are talking about is real. That game has a massive social aspect. The entire game basically revolved around an irc style chat interface. Additionally there was no trade window, instead players would cultivate 'reps' and were used as intermediaries in trade.

Re:Nope, WoW is (4, Interesting)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about 4 years ago | (#31840678)

I think you are wrong... The initial success of Wow was for a large part due to being at the right place at the right time, after that simple momentum took over. People play WoW because their friends play WoW. That is how it works for all sites or software with a strong social element; it's not quite winner-takes-all but a single dominating entity does tend to emerge.

Attempts to copy WoW or trying to copy WoW's success is almost certainly doomed. I remember the attempt to bring the by far most successful MMO of the time (Lineage) from Korea to the West and making it the most succesful one here has resulted in failure, for the same reasons. What worked then and there is not so likely to succeed in displacing the current market leaders here and now. That doesn't mean people should or will stop developing MMOs altogether, they can and will still be profitable to operate without beating WoW's subscription numbers. But if you are aiming to beat WoW, prepare for disappointment.

Developing and running an MMO is a very expensive and complex proposition, and the returns may not be all that good. Quick buck artists are not going to turn to MMOs even with the lure of WoW's $1 billion + revenue; they know they are not likely to make even a fraction of that with a lot of work. Emulating Zynga's model seems a much more fertile field, it is still new enough for early players to make a killing with far less effort, so I expect this business model to gain a foothold in the near future. I am sad to see a decent company like Turbine partnering with these scumbags, but I expect more of them may fall if the revenue is large enough.

The good news is that, at least here in the Netherlands and Europe, regulators are increasingly becoming wary of such scams. The most notorious and lucrative ones foisting expensive SMS subscriptions on unsuspecting kids are already being addressed effectively, and privacy watchdogs take a dim view of teasing information from unwary visitors. Consumers are becoming increasingly wary of these scams as well, and I expect this wariness to increase sharply as these scams become more prevalent, and more people get stung by them. The Zynga business model is one that will gain a foothold in the near future, but I expect it to be a short-lived success.

Re:Nope, WoW is (2, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | about 4 years ago | (#31841382)

I highly doubt you are right. You've got three problems with that logic:

1) Just because something can't reach WoW's level doesn't mean it isn't successful. You don't have to take over the world to have a business worth doing. You just have to make a non-trivial amount of profit. There are plenty of other MMOs out there that have enough players to continue to operate, and develop new expansions. Everquest 1 and 2 are still running and releasing expansions, Eve Online, City of Heros, Dark Age of Camelot, Warhammer Online, etc etc. WoW is by far the biggest, that doesn't mean it is the only profitable one.

2) That Lineage didn't do all that well doesn't mean that WoW is unbeatable, it means that Lineage is a game that doesn't appeal to the US market all that much. You might notice that it's Metacritic rating is 65%, as opposed to WoW's 93%. Metacritic gives you a good aggregate of how US reviews feel about something. You have to remember that different cultures like different kinds of games. You can see this quite well in US vs Japanese RPGs. The style of games like Baldur's Gate or Ultima are extremely different from something like Final Fantasy or Fire Emblem. So just because the game is wildly successful in Korea doesn't mean it'll do that well in the US. Baldur's Gate was massive in the US and bombed in Japan, despite Japan being big on RPGs.

3) MMO players seem to be more than willing to try new games. Startrek Online had a million subscribers on day one. That is damn near 10% of WoW's player base and way more than WoW had out of the gate. Doesn't look like they managed to maintain that number, which isn't surprising because the game isn't great. However it seems clear that MMO players are more than willing to give a new game a shot, and would likely keep playing it if they were enjoying it.

Really what is needed to start beating WoW is a game that is as good as WoW. The game is extremely engaging, and very friendly to new players. It is an exceedingly well designed game. That is why it got so many players. It got people like me who like the idea of MMOs but found that they were way too hardcore (I tried EQ1 and wanted to like it but couldn't). It got people who'd never played MMOs before because they were too complicated. It got people who played other MMOs but were fed up because they felt like work. It gathered all types because it was well made.

As such another well made, mass appeal game could probably unseat it. However, that doesn't have to happen. You can settle for a smaller part of the market and still make plenty of money. Eve Online never tried to compete with WoW. Eve is hard, it is hostile, it has very different gameplay and so on. It appeals to a hardcore demographic. Not nearly so many of those, you aren't going to get the WoW numbers, but there are enough to pay the bills, keep the devs employed making new content, and generate a healthy profit.

Not everyone can be the mass market company, not everyone tries to be. The niche market can make you plenty of money. You won't find B&W speakers in Best Buy or Sears. They aren't a brand you find in many homes. None the less they've made a long, successful business out of selling to a niche market. As an even more niche example take SVS, that you find in no stores as they are Internet only. For years the only thing they sold was large subs that look like hot water heaters. However that too has been enough to make them money.

Re:Nope, WoW is (2, Interesting)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | about 4 years ago | (#31842078)

I wonder if Brad McQuaid wakes up some days and kicks himself repeatedly.

All EQ had to do to be WoW was to be a teensy bit easier. But they fell in love with the 1% of hardcore players and repeatedly screwed over the 99% of customers who couldn't afford to play 14 hour chunks.

Don't get me wrong- I thought WoW was too easy when it started but that difficulty level was where the money was.

Gawd EQ was hard with corpse runs, losing ALL your gear, losing a week's play worth of EXP in an hour if things went badly, the "ubers" owning the top end of the game with some zones you might never see (I got one trip into mischief before it was redone), 3 week respawn cycles, weekday afternoon spawn times, FEAR. It was hard- it was cool if you had a certain attitude but over time it became clear unless you were retired, wealthy, or a student, you would have a hard time keeping up with the 50 hour a week play schedule.

Still- I saw everything up to just shy of Crystallos at which point my right hand blew out and I was done.

and I hope... (1)

madeye the younger (318275) | about 4 years ago | (#31842570)

And I hope every day Brad McQuaid wakes up and someone IS kicking him repeatedly. Customer service, my ass. I've never played a Sony/Verant game since, and never will. Nor anything that dickhead is involved with.

Re:and I hope... (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 4 years ago | (#31845070)

It was my main game for over 3 years (a spot recently taken over by City of Heroes as I've gone back for my 4th major run at it) and in all that time, I went into Veshan (red dragon raid) one time, and Plane of Fear (god of fear raid) one time, with my level 50 necro. And that was towards the end of my run. Went back later after cap was raised to 60, and then skipped town permanently around level 52-ish.

I often said on their own boards, before they closed them due to too much bitching, that they succeeded in spite of themselves, largely for lack of technologically equivalent competition. They were the first to produce the dancing bear, so to speak.

Consider some of their stupid decisions that would make it dead on arrival today: Spellcasters have to "meditate" to gain back mana faster. So far, so good. But that put a book in your face, blocking any of the novel, lovely 3D world for the nominal gameplay aspect that something could sneak up on you and whack you for full damage because you couldn't see.

They got rid of it -- after 2 years, when pops started dropping. Consider having to retrieve your body or lose everything (which, BTW, was on a timer.) Legion were the teens with parents swearing at them because they died just before going out for dinner on Friday. Or working people who died in the late evening and knew they had to be up to 3 and thus exhausted the next day.

And arguably worse, magicians had magic bags you could put things in that made them weightless (if you carried too much, you slowed down in movement.) So far, so good, except they were conjured items, and disappeared when you logged out. Or disconnected accidentally because the network, or their servers, coughed.

People quickly learned to only put yard trash semi-valuable (at one time) loot into it, like tarnished or bronze weapons and so on. But not your real weapons, which, of course, was the bulk of your weight. Could have been trivially solved by, say, giving you a 10 minute window when logging back in to empty it before it disappears.

Re:Nope, WoW is (1)

Synn (6288) | about 4 years ago | (#31844302)

I wonder if Brad McQuaid wakes up some days and kicks himself repeatedly.

I doubt it. He was the driving force behind Vanguard which flopped completely because it was too hard core. Players of that game repeatedly told him he was going in the wrong direction of design, but he wouldn't listen since he knew best.

WoW did a lot of things right long before other MMO's even considered it. Lack of a death penalty being just one of them.

Re:Nope, WoW is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31844470)

That and not partner with SOE...

Re:Nope, WoW is (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about 4 years ago | (#31843136)

No matter what, most MMO games will always be niche markets. Problem, playing the same game over and over and over again, really doesn't do it for most people. Learning new games playing them for a while and moving onto the next one is the majority market. Possible MMO might be able to stretch their market by allowing users to log in multiple different games, at different times and possible transfer their character skill level between games.

Perhaps it was just me but I find a game starting to get boring after playing for more than say, 12 hours, after 24 hours really boring and beyond 48 mind numbing torture (obviously not in a single stretch). Not that I can't go back to the game in say 6 months and enjoy it again but solid addict play is totally out of the question. So subscription play for one game really is a no go (I have worked on factory production lines and, always earned productivity bonuses but I would never consider it fun).

Re:Nope, WoW is (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31843898)

WOW had crazy numbers even in beta stages. The reason WOW had such a big launch is because the existing games were all stale and played out. EQ 2 had no pvp to mention.

But it wasn't just the timing, you heard it again and again on guild discussion forums and the like. This was being produced by Blizzard. A company with a solid track record of killer games.

It kept them for the reasons you state. When something new and good comes along, WOW will lose its player base just as easily. The fact is that a game that is easy to play, and easy for new players is boring for experienced and skilled players. There is no real high level content and expansions are all the same thing. Every expansion screws over the most dedicated players.

Re:Nope, WoW is (1)

warGod3 (198094) | about 4 years ago | (#31843484)

Yes, there is a strong social element that is prevalent in MMOs. Yes, WoW was in the right place at the right time. Look at other MMOs that have been spawned that should have been wildly successful, but were in part possibly overshadowed by WoW or had facets of WoW that were attempted to be copied by developers and wound up ruining the game. This is just a list of the games I have played and my opinion, YMMV and all that...

Star Wars Galaxies - Came out before WoW, however, the "geniuses" there decided to dumb down the game. They went from having what should be the single biggest IP out there that would appeal to many people, to bleeding subscribers left and right in an attempt to attract more people.
EQ2
LoTRO
Fallen Earth
STO

Now consider the development of the new KOTOR MMO, if Bioware screws this up, it'll be like "as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced." A MMO with lots of potential to actually compete with WoW will probably be overshadowed by something like some Blizzard expansion pack strategically released just before KOTOR which will drive WoW levels up or something or Blizzard could release something like Diablo 3 to insure their domination in the online gaming community.

I have contemplated going back to LoTRO, however, I'm not all that sure about the possibility of dealiing with a Zynga model. I wonder how many of the "lifetime subscribers" that shelled out $300 will be a little put off by this.

Re:Nope, WoW is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31844144)

I think your first statement is a bit off. Timing certainly had something to do with their success, but to say it's largely why they are successful just isn't true. The reason they are successful is mostly due to how they've executed on the continued development and expansion of the game. Do not forget that EQ2 launched right around the same time.

Of course people play Wow because their friends play, that's kind of the point isn't it?

Not necessarily (3, Insightful)

Moraelin (679338) | about 4 years ago | (#31840698)

Not necessarily. It seems to me like diming and quartering the users is what's winning outside of the WoW world.

There are a _lot_ of games which live by selling in-game items for RL cash these days. It has the carrot of being theoretically free to play if you don't want to pay, and you even get a lot of leaway with the quality. People are quick to point out that it's free, even when they run into problems. And you don't need all that many people who go crazy with the purchases to more than make up for those who don't. There are people who spend thousands on having the top mounts, and the top extra enhancements on their PvP gear, and if you don't get them with the PvP, you get them when they get kicked out of endgame raids for not having enough +damage on their sword or +block on their shield.

And the model is sadly expanding even to paid subscription MMOs.

E.g., last time I tried EQ2, Sony was already selling a metric buttload of stuff for real currency for it, on top of needing a full subscription, and needing the Station Access expensive subscription if you want more than 4 character slots (total, not per server!), and having to buy the extra mini-expansion packs to get your extra class powers, and so on.

E.g., STO, much as I love the game otherwise, it's starting to bother me that by now half the playable races can only be bought for "cryptic points" (read: RL money.) And so are any character slots above 3 (4 if you bought lifetime subscription) which isn't enough even to play all 3 classes on both Fed and Klingon sides. And a few more things, not all of them cosmetic. And that bonuses for buying collectors' editions and whatnot include stuff like a purple quality bridge officer, or the only point defense system in the game.

Heck, even in single player games these days, it's getting to the point where half the content is available only by paying extra, even from day one. We're no longer even talking about expansion packs developped later, but stuff that was planned from the word "go" to be removed from the actual game and sold separately for real cash. E.g., The Sims 3 launched from day zero with more content for sale for extra money on their site, than got shipped with the game. E.g., racing games which ship with hardly any tracks _or_ cars, but you can buy the actual tracks or cars for extra cash.

Sorry, it seems to me like that's the real direction that the gaming industry is taking, not the direction of spending as much money and manpower as WoW did.

I guess I can't even blame them. You could spend years polishing a game, hiring people who can do at least the elementary maths to balance it, filling it with more content than the competition... and it still may or may not be a dud. Or you can just quarter and dime the players. Hmm. I can see why the latter is more popular.

But I can't say I like it one bit.

Re:Not necessarily (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31841076)

diming and quartering

Boy, talk about inflation...

(I think the phrase is "to nickel and dime.") :)

Re:Not necessarily (2, Funny)

Minwee (522556) | about 4 years ago | (#31841328)

I think the phrase is "to nickel and dime."

Being nickelled wasn't all that bad, but the threat of being quartered [straightdope.com] is really starting to drive people away.

Re:Not necessarily (2, Informative)

Moraelin (679338) | about 4 years ago | (#31842798)

Well, it's inflation all right. A more literal description of what they're doing is more like 2- and 5-dollaring the players (playing a federation klingon in STO is 2.4 dollars, extra character slots are 5 dollars), but that kinda doesn't roll off the tongue as nicely. Or in the case of Sony more like 5- and 10-dollaring. I guess you pay more for brand name or something ;)

Re:Not necessarily (2, Informative)

shadowfaxcrx (1736978) | about 4 years ago | (#31841700)

SOE has gone even further in Star Wars Galaxies. Now most new game content is only available via loot cards in the online trading card game. You have to buy packs of cards to get the loot. . So they're charging you money to maybe (but probably not) get the in-game stuff you want. It's ridiculous. And I think it's gonna sink 'em. They've already shut down half their servers.

Really, though, I see MMO's in a similar light in which I see reality television. Reality shows are crap. But for some reason the public loves them, even though they're predictable, poorly shot, and not real. Similar thing with MMO's. Gameplay is horrible. Just about any single player game has better animation than an MMO. And just about any game has better content. MMO's content is all the same. "Talk to this guy. Go kill that big bunch of guys. Then kill a really big guy. Come back and talk to this guy again to get a collectible trinket. Rinse. Repeat ad-nauseum."

With the exception of the roleplay communities on a few of them, which create their own content and story arcs, but are small and often out-shouted by everyone else, I don't get what people see in MMO's.

Re:Not necessarily (3, Interesting)

Aceticon (140883) | about 4 years ago | (#31843214)

Anedoctal and all that but interesting in light of what you said:
- I myself recently went back to WoW (having left almost 5 years ago because I was seriously pissed of at the direction things were taking back then) because in these days of requires-always-on-connection single player games, rootkit-like DRM and low-content-on-package-you-can-buy-the-rest-for-extra games, WoW offers the best money-per-content ratio.

The industry is complaining about WoW monopolising gamer's time and yet they're actually reducing the relative value of their games all the while MMORPGS kept getting bigger, less grindy, more casual player friendly, catering to a larger variety of tastes, and even cheaper.

For all the griefers, gold spammers and beggers, at this point in time, WoW + 2 Expansions + 6 months subscription is actually a beter value proposition per buck with regards to the amount of entertainment you get from it and content to explore than pretty much any other games in the market (except one or two other MMORPGs such as LOTRO).

This is the conclusion I came to about 2 months ago and why I gave WoW another try: in that time I've spent less money and got a lot more entertainment than I would have with any major Single Player game for the PC not from the bargain bin.

(in fact the only PC games other than MMORPGS that can compete with WoW are bargain bin oldies)

Re:Not necessarily (1)

harl (84412) | about 4 years ago | (#31844986)

E.g., last time I tried EQ2, Sony was already selling a metric buttload of stuff for real currency for it, on top of needing a full subscription, and needing the Station Access expensive subscription if you want more than 4 character slots (total, not per server!), and having to buy the extra mini-expansion packs to get your extra class powers, and so on.

You're wrong on this. I've never had a Station Access account and I have more than 4 characters.

Re:Nope, WoW is (1)

Orga (1720130) | about 4 years ago | (#31844118)

GPotato's game Allod's Online does quite an excellent job of filling in for WoW in the Free 2 Play market. And with many successful games already under their belt you can be assured they understand their market they're not a subscription game like DDO who found out they were going broke and are trying anything to stay alive. I dare WoW players to log into Allod's Online and play through the tutorial area and not wonder why the hell they're paying $15 every month for WoW. And I had 3 70's in WoW and now a 40 in Allod's for reference.

Spam? (3, Funny)

ExploHD (888637) | about 4 years ago | (#31840198)

I bet it will be great with their new Viking MMO

Re:Spam? (1)

Moraelin (679338) | about 4 years ago | (#31840720)

Viking spam? I can imagine it.

"Hear ye! Hear ye! For a few gold you could have a tool the size of Odin's spear!"

Re:Spam? (4, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 4 years ago | (#31840868)

I've had to deal with much less of that since I put in a spamberserker appliance.

The hardware warranty on those things is really short; but the vendor promises a Valkyrie on site within two hours, so long as the appliance dies while battling spam.

If it fails to wake up after scheduled downtime, I have to dispose of it myself.

Re:Spam? (1)

Fieryphoenix (1161565) | about 4 years ago | (#31841862)

This is a win-win, because those Vikings really want to know what's in YOUR wallet?

Re:Spam? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | about 4 years ago | (#31842152)

Now, now, let's not make fun of the Vikings. It's been said that they'd have gotten their longships to the Moon if they thought there'd be anything there to rape, loot or fight when they got there.

The bottom line (4, Funny)

Myji Humoz (1535565) | about 4 years ago | (#31840200)

So what you're trying to say is, Turbine chose to get double the gold reward from the quest by gaining 3 evil alignment points? Who wouldn't do that in their shoes?

Re:The bottom line (1, Funny)

Ocker3 (1232550) | about 4 years ago | (#31840294)

damn. I blew out the last 4 gig of my qouta d/ling that client so my gf would stop whinging about only having FPS games on my pc, and they're about to pull This kind of shite on me. Now I have to go find my old Guild Wars key! Congrats on finding a way to piss off a Whole bunch of people at once Turbine.

Re:The bottom line (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840462)

Things like this is why I keep a secondary email account solely for MMOs.

Re:The bottom line (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840440)

you know what ? Not only that this company has been an epic fail and raped d & d of its name online. Players cannot do what they want to do in a world online(comparision to d & d ). Players have to buy extras online now from said company. No open pvp ( my first argument) have to spend x hours in quests or fork over my cc in a micromanagement system. What does this have to do with d & d ? If I want an experience Ill go p & p in a nice group (online or find local people) simple as that. This is another corporate fail, trying to copy a product that is not as good as the original. And yes Wizards of the Coast suck too . TSR was better.

Re:The bottom line (4, Insightful)

Miseph (979059) | about 4 years ago | (#31842026)

Thank goodness there's no forced PvP. Some of us prefer not to play games where walking out of the starting town means that some max-level fuckwad will slay us just because they can. I'm all for keeping it limited to tavern brawls or CTF matches (although I've never once been able to actually do one...) and keeping it out of my gameplay. As far as I'm concerned, anybody who cries about the limit on PvP is just upset that they can't randomly kill any other player they happen to see regardless of whether or not they have any interest whatsoever in doing PvP themselves, and they can blow me.

Anyway... ditto that on PnP, it's definitely the best option. Kids today just don't realize what they're missing by actually being in a physical room with their game friends. I sometimes legitimately fear for the future of the species.

Re:The bottom line (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 4 years ago | (#31845164)

> anybody who cries about the limit on PvP is just upset that they can't randomly kill any other player

That's pretty accurate. Some games, and EQ is one of them, have (or had) specific PvP servers. Heck, they even had several varieties:

Balls-out Everybody vs. Everybody PvP

Realm vs. Realm of Good vs. Evil

Race vs. Race of Hummies vs. Elves vs. Fatties vs. Shorties

Pick your poison, it was all there.

Re:The bottom line (-1)

_KiTA_ (241027) | about 4 years ago | (#31841632)

So what you're trying to say is, Turbine chose to get double the gold reward from the quest by gaining 3 evil alignment points? Who wouldn't do that in their shoes?

I know you're trying to be funny, but it's more along the lines of...

Turbine's in dire financial straits. I have no insider information, but it's pretty obvious.

LOTRO is the second most popular US MMO, and it has some great expansions, including the new Moria one that just came out... It's like World of Warcraft only done *right*. But that's not going to last, for the same reason AC and DDO died.

DDO went free after it slowly decayed. It's probably on the downswing from that huge influx right now.

Asheron's Call is functionally dead. It has something like 100 players per server on peak hours. They have pretty much officially given up on it. It broke my heart to see Maggie the Jackcat's [thejackcat.com] page hadn't updated since her in game friend died IRL.

DDO and AC are a wash, really, as far as finances are concerned. DDO is probably generating enough money via micro-transactions to pay for the servers and staff, that's about it. AC is... probably losing money, but they wouldn't dare close it down -- it would harm their brand.

Basically the problem is: Turbine is too nice. They give away monthly expansions instead of selling these in stores. This is the AC model vs the EQ model -- AC has had a monthly update every month since it came out, over 100 of them. EQ has expansions every 6 months. AC had more content and more story than EQ, by far. It wasn't even close. But EQ is a far better success. Why?

Here's the trick that Turbine didn't 'get' -- those expansions keep EQ in the stores. Every 6 months, a new box, a new gold box, and with the advent of steam, every few months a $5 sale on the gold set to get new players in.

AC hasn't been purchasable in stores for 8 years or more. No new players for 8 years, outside of going to the website via word of mouth. And that doesn't work.

What Turbine needs to do is make a new "boxed collection" every 6 months and sell it in stores for $20. That would keep the new players flowing in and might -- MIGHT -- save them.

What I'd really like to see is an Asheron's Call 1.5 -- an AC revamp, maybe with them traveling to the Dereth mainland, with the new LOTRO engine and AC's classic gameplay -- skill based, no jobs, roguelike item randomization, the works. Maybe revamp magic -- it's always been a weak spot of AC, to be honest. Continue the excellent policy of monthly content updates, if only a new dungeon or revamp of an older dungeon -- alongside the story updates, of course.

One of the most depressing events of my life was the ending of Asheron's Call 2. The... community that game had -- and there's no other word for it -- despite years of Microsoft openly sabotaging the game (they disabled in game chat for months and refused to let Turbine fix it) all banded together, and had one last get together and party on top of a giant tree.

It was the most haunting, ethereal music I've ever heard. I'll never forget it. All these players, hanging out alongside the admins, desperately exchanging emails and IMs and phone numbers, trying to work at meeting up again in a new MMO...

There's a reason I can forgive missteps like having a spyware company involved in the advertisements -- Turbine are good people. They deserve more success then they have gotten so far.

And I have no doubt this spyware thing is a misunderstanding or exaggeration of the facts.

Wrong wrong wrong wrong (5, Informative)

dschl (57168) | about 4 years ago | (#31841874)

Turbine's in dire financial straits. I have no insider information, but it's pretty obvious.

Obvious to who? There have been regular updates to DDO on schedule since going free to play, and their revenue went up by 500% [gamasutra.com] since going free to play. The number of subscribers has doubled [massively.com], and I don't think that even includes the pay-to-play people such as me, who spend as much or more each month on buying content packs as a subscriber would. As long as they keep releasing content, they'll keep the revenue stream alive from people like me.

LOTRO is the second most popular US MMO, and it has some great expansions, including the new Moria one that just came out... It's like World of Warcraft only done *right*. But that's not going to last, for the same reason AC and DDO died.

{princess bride}Truly, you have a dizzying intellect.{/princess bride}

DDO went free after it slowly decayed. It's probably on the downswing from that huge influx right now.

Don't think so [ddo.com]. But then, why look for real numbers when you can just spout FUD and pull stuff out of your ass.

What Turbine needs to do is make a new "boxed collection" every 6 months and sell it in stores for $20. That would keep the new players flowing in and might -- MIGHT -- save them.

You might not have heard, but brick and mortar games stores already have a few nails in the coffin, and could soon go the way of the arcade, the video store, and the buggy whip manufacturer. Ever heard of Steam?

And I have no doubt this spyware thing is a misunderstanding or exaggeration of the facts.

Just by viewing a page on a Turbine site, DDO players have confirmed [ddo.com] (by inspecting packets) that the account name and email address were transmitted from the "Offer Wall" page. Add the pre-fetching comment here [slashdot.org], and you might be able to see the problem. Sure, my password and credit card were not transmitted, and I only browse with NoScript, but I am probably not representative of the most vulnerable portions of the player base.

Re:The bottom line (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | about 4 years ago | (#31842180)

Holy hell, monthly expansions? How big are they?

I don't know about anyone else but just seems waaaay too fast. Even if it was just a dungeon or a level increase every other update, it sounds like continually having the carpet pulled from under your feet.

Re:The bottom line (1)

harl (84412) | about 4 years ago | (#31845028)

Turbine has been doing monthly expansion for close to a decade in Asheron's Call.

It was great. A dynamic world where things change so unlike the modern MMOs.

Re:The bottom line (1)

waspleg (316038) | about 4 years ago | (#31842790)

i can agree that turbine is far less evil than nearly any other gaming company and that certainly goes double for mmos. unfortunately they cater to the carebears only, fucking over the entmoors players even more with the latest release. so while they have an excellent start to a pvp system in lotro, it's been left to languish along with many user's subscriptions (including mine, i pre-ordered MoM for all the extras and didn't even play through a whole level of it, pve is fucking boring, i played all summer last year and even got my g/f, who hates wow, to play). i never played ac, a lot of lotro players are from daoc and ddo because turbine really only seems to have the staff to keep one game going.

it's sad to read this. it really seems like they've resorted to back alley blowjobs and one can only assume that it's because they're hurting for money (unlike wow, which sucks at everything except ADD match making for teens).

Just keep this shit (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840234)

away from my Lord of the Rings Online. I don't care what you do to DDO, but I swear to Sauron if you fuck with LOTRO I will make you wish you were Gollum.

Wow (1)

Aladrin (926209) | about 4 years ago | (#31840370)

I'm one of the few people who liked Asheron's Call 2, apparently. I thought it was a lot better than AC1. If only they could have made the monthly events a little more exciting, I'd have played for years.

To think they've fallen so far as to jump into bed with a notorious company like that... I'm really saddened.

Prefetching? (4, Insightful)

Thalagyrt (851883) | about 4 years ago | (#31840420)

The post says straight up that simply viewing the target Offer Wall sends your info out.

Did these idiot devs not even consider that Firefox does URL prefetching and they are, due to the prefetching of their sell-my-information-to-the-devil-wall page, selling information of people who didn't even view the wall but simply viewed a page that links to their offer wall?

This is shady at best and criminal at worst.

Re:Prefetching? (3, Informative)

Renraku (518261) | about 4 years ago | (#31840700)

Malware is illegal. Anyone who partners up with and promotes malware can be held accountable for damages stemming from the drive-by download and permissionless install of said malware.

Re:Prefetching? (4, Interesting)

Thalagyrt (851883) | about 4 years ago | (#31840744)

Yup. I was (emphasis on was) a customer of Turbine's up until about 8 months ago or so. I've already filed a complaint with the Massechusetts Attorney General as Turbine operates out of Mass. and have directly contacted Turbine as well explaining this issue.

I'd suggest anyone else who was a customer of theirs do the same to get the message heard loud and clear. At this point, despite not having logged in for 8 months, who knows what this company will do with my information and that of other prior customers a year from now?

Re:Prefetching? (2, Insightful)

t0p (1154575) | about 4 years ago | (#31840902)

So now all would-be players should be advised to give false personal info and a throwaway gmail address when signing up to join the game. Which is a wise SOP anyway IMO.

I know that isn't an ideal solution. But it is a solution that allows for free gameplay without the risk of compromise. An alternative, and more sensible course of action is to avoid playing these games in the first place. But that's the killjoy's solution.

Re:Prefetching? (1)

Mathness (145187) | about 4 years ago | (#31842754)

Did these idiot devs not even consider that Firefox does URL prefetching

No, why should they? This is due to a design (flaw) in Firefox/Mozilla, where it will happy visit anything asked to without the user even knowing about it. I will venture a bet that most users of Firefox/Mozilla doesn't even know about this feature.

One would expect this feature to be present in the privacy or security options, as this article points out, it can be used to grab information without people knowing it (and have been known for years to happen). But it isn't, one have to know about the feature and got to about:config and set network.prefetch-next to false.

Out of curiosity did the links have rel="prefetch"? As this will force Firefox/Mozilla to prefetch, if it didn't it is my understanding that it isn't generally prefetched.

just dont play for a while (1)

jobst (955157) | about 4 years ago | (#31840426)

... ALL players ... and it will teach them a lesson.

Re:just dont play for a while (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840620)

Pfft, who are you trying to kid?
Assassins Creed 2 sold, and it has probably the worst DRM ever.
What makes you think people will give a monkeys flying shit about some website collecting information?
People do that crap all the time on Facebook, Myspace and Bebo. (perhaps not so much the 3rd if it doesn't get a buyer)
People simply don't give a damn about their privacy online, they'd happily comply with posting all their personal information just to get a free bloody iPod for crying out loud...

All the more reason for Computer Licences IMO.
Idiots being let on computers has ruined Computing for all of us. It is going to take decades to fix all this awful mess we are in now.

Will we ever see an Asheron's Call 3? (1)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | about 4 years ago | (#31840488)

AC1 players loved the game. It was my favorite MMORPG ever even though it had imbalances. Yet AC2 was a colossal rush job with the combat system being weak(Level 20 Archer+Tactician could kill level 50 mobs, and armor didn't work well).

AC1 success

AC2 failure

Will we see an AC3? I sure hope so.

Re:Will we ever see an Asheron's Call 3? (2, Insightful)

aapold (753705) | about 4 years ago | (#31840738)

You can't establish a star-trek movie wave (alternating good and bad with odd/even iterations) with only two sample points.

Given just two points, what you can plot from them is a line, and in this case it is a line plummeting downwards.

Re:Will we ever see an Asheron's Call 3? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31841602)

Most of the people who made the "special sauce" of AC1 are no longer at the company. There are a lot of very talented people there now, but it's most likely that their efforts will be funneled into pre-existing IP tie-ins, like a Twilight MMO or something. If there ever is an AC3, it will probably be a spiritual succesor, like Fallout 3.

Re:Will we ever see an Asheron's Call 3? (1)

Stone316 (629009) | about 4 years ago | (#31841972)

I second it.. I loved AC1... I liked AC2 until they started nerfing tactician... Yeah, I realize it was pretty powerful but it was a minority which took advantage of that class and forced the dev's to nerf it.

Read below: Oh yeah, I like this idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840500)

I am sure they will not piss off any of their customers :))))

*Players participating in this offer program do not earn points from Turbine directly. All points are granted by the offer vendor (e.g. SuperRewards) at the vendor's sole discretion. Turbine does not provide any end-user support for this system. For questions about point rewards, offer content, or payment details please contact the Offer Vendor or advertising company (the company whose offer you complete). Turbine is not responsible for Super Rewards points or transactions. Turbine is not able to assist with Super Rewards purchases or interactions. For inquiries about Super Rewards or your purchase with them, please visit http://www.srpoints.com/help [srpoints.com]. If you believe that you have not received Turbine Points purchased or earned through Super Rewards, please contact Turbine. The Turbine Terms of Service apply to all Super Rewards transactions involving Turbine Points.

I do not play this game but I may have to check in occasionally just to watch the customer rage that is coming their way very, very soon.

Maybe I should start playing in time to get in on the lawsuit that will surely follow.

Re:Read below: Oh yeah, I like this idea (2, Interesting)

Hecatonchires (231908) | about 4 years ago | (#31842110)

Hang on, in almost the same breath they state:
For questions about point rewards, offer content, or payment details please contact the Offer Vendor or advertising company (the company whose offer you complete). Turbine is not responsible for Super Rewards points or transactions.
Then:
If you believe that you have not received Turbine Points purchased or earned through Super Rewards, please contact Turbine.

This... does not make sense.

Jayson (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840566)

It is possible that Zynga has a decent model however highly doubtable. It surprises me they get little coverage in print media, no wonder the NYT is flailing.
http://www.newspaperintegrity.com

Damn... (3, Insightful)

Jaysyn (203771) | about 4 years ago | (#31840880)

Damn that is kinda shady. Oh well, I've been needing to clear of some space on the old hard drive, & that's a really good reason for DDO to go.

Re:Damn... (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | about 4 years ago | (#31841916)

Ditto.

I had both LotRO and DDO installed.

LotRO was a real letdown once you got to level 40. It turned into a HUGE grind. I didn't think it possible to be more of a grind then WoW, but LotRO proved it was.

The one thing I DID like about LotRO was the fact that they followed the "feel" of the books pretty well. I was told by a friend that it was because the IP holders of the LotR franchise demanded that they have a say in the creative process to ensure that Turbine didn't mangle the franchise.

It would not surprise me in the slightest if those IP rights holders yank the carpet right out from under Turbine after this fiasco.

Re:Damn... (1)

geekboy642 (799087) | about 4 years ago | (#31842024)

I didn't think it possible to be more of a grind then WoW

The original EverQuest laughs at your innocence.

Re:Damn... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31843706)

Indeed.. anyone who thinks WoW is a grind needs to take a step into the way back machine and go "play" EQ for a few days/weeks/months heh

No LUA, No Win (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31840944)

WOW is very easy for beginners, but offers a lot for pros, like a programmable GUI. DDO is just cheap, all the monsters and all the dungeons look the same.

Quit while I was ahead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31841136)

Glad I quit a few months before the lawsuits between turbine and atari started. Seems that turbine is attempting to pay for their lawyers now with sketchy business practices of spamming their player-base.

They've taken it down - for now (5, Informative)

dschl (57168) | about 4 years ago | (#31841182)

Due to the outcry from their customers, Turbine has taken the Offer Wall down [ddo.com] while they sort out the issues that arose due to the half-assed broken way they implemented this lame idea.

I am probably part of the target audience they hoped to attract when they went free to play - someone who hadn't played an MMO before, who had played a bit of pen and paper way back when, and who has disposable income that they are willing to spend if the game is fun enough. So far, it has worked well - I have spent $200 on the game in the past five months on my account and my son's account.

I don't want to deal with a company that I cannot trust, or leave my credit card information in their hands. I absolutely do NOT trust lowlife criminal scum like SuperRewards, and by extension, I do not trust any company that has any dealings with them whatsoever. That means you, Turbine.

I know better than to take any of those offers, but Turbine royally screwed up in their implementation. Even viewing the list of offers on the Turbine site meant that my email address and account name for login was likely transmitted to those parasitic bottom-feeders.

I'll still be playing the game as I bought a ton of content that I have yet to explore, but I will be getting Turbine to remove my credit card info from their billing system if this isn't fixed, and a formal apology issued to their customers by next week. I seriously love this game - it is a ton of fun, many of the players are older, and I don't have to worry about most forms of griefing or PvP emphasis that has kept me away from the entire MMO genre so far. I get to explore instanced dungeons in a small group, and have only explored less than a quarter of the content.

Time to turn the heat up to eleven - DDO players haven't killed it for good yet, or received a formal apology for this privacy breach. Group seppuku by the PHBs who thought up this scheme would be an entirely acceptable response at this time, and would go a long ways towards restoring confidence in the company.

Re:They've taken it down - for now (1, Troll)

Barny (103770) | about 4 years ago | (#31841472)

I can't trust them for a whole other reason.

When the game first launched, I borrowed my friends account to play with (he plays in a different time zone), I made a mage class (not sure what it was at the time) and went to kill my first mob, I cast "Magic Missile" and... it missed.

Now I know its been fixed, but anyone who could cock-up the most BASIC of DnD spell at launch that badly I just couldn't trust not to screw up other things in equally bad ways.

Re:They've taken it down - for now (1)

dschl (57168) | about 4 years ago | (#31841548)

The last time I played D&D was over 20 years ago. The rules have changed significantly since AD&D (DDO is based on 3.5), and none of the minutia remained in my memory.

I didn't have a detailed pre-existing mental picture of how the game should work when I downloaded it last year and started playing. Instead, the game met and exceeded my hazy recollections, and then some. I don't have to use my imagination for the video game version, but the convenience of assembling a group, the ability to play anytime, and the variety offered by the character building and development process made it a very fun experience for me. Having a consistent DM who didn't entirely suck (my experience in the past) also helped.

I can relate to your experience. I only ever made it half-way through the first LoTR movie before turning it off in disgust, and will never watch the rest, or the remaining movies by Peter Jackson. I had read the books so many times that the movie was an immense let-down. It didn't even come close to the story as pictured in my mind, and I chose to remain with my mental images of Middle Earth, rather than somebody else's bastardization.

Re:They've taken it down - for now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31841614)

they don't call it magic MISSile for nothin

Re:They've taken it down - for now (1)

zero_out (1705074) | about 4 years ago | (#31841844)

That's what got me too. They based the game very loosely on 3.5 edition rules. I had played 3.5 enough to have set expectations of how the game would work. When it didn't function as I expected, I got frustrated and annoyed. Afterall, combat in DND is supposed to be more tactical, and less hack and slash, but making bosses competely IMMUNE to CC?! That eliminates 90% of the tactical options, and 99% of the fun. All that is left is hack, hack, hack.

Re:They've taken it down - for now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31842910)

You do know that "The Darkness" wasn't an acceptable target for magic missile until you made so much noise about it? :-)

Re:They've taken it down - for now (1)

Stone316 (629009) | about 4 years ago | (#31841960)

Honestly, i've been a Turbine customer before back in the Asheron's Call days. Secretly i'll even admit that I had the most fun of any MMORPG playing AC. Anyways, I noticed the ad saying DDO was free to play and I was going to install it.

Unless the company comes clean and offers a real answer, then there is no way i'll install DDO or any future game they make.

Re:They've taken it down - for now (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31842040)

> I have spent $200 on the game in the past five months on my account and my son's account.

Interesting. It looks like the "lure in new players" approach totally backfired, then. I mean, you turned out to be willing to shell out $40/month, and now you're probably... going to end up sending $30/month to a more reputable monthly-recurring-fee company instead of these guys.

Re:They've taken it down - for now (1)

dschl (57168) | about 4 years ago | (#31842198)

Two accounts, and I wasn't planning on sinking any more money in until this fall at the earliest. My goal was to keep my own account between $10-15 per month, and I'll be back on track shortly. I have $50 worth of points just sitting in my account, waiting for sales on the content that I haven't already purchased. The "lure in new players" approach worked quite well. The problem is, so did more recent approach of "piss them off by associating with internet marketing scumbags".

I have watched my brother-in-law play WoW and many other MMOs, and they don't appeal to me at all, with the cartoony graphics and gameplay. The only thing that got me playing was the connection to something I enjoyed playing 20 years ago. When I stop playing DDO, I'll probably go back to Freeciv.

Same story here (1)

bradley13 (1118935) | about 4 years ago | (#31842838)

That sounds like my story. I tried EQ, and some other online game (don't remember which). DDO gets a lot right - giving you private instances of dungeons, no gruntwork (mining, crafting, whatever) required to succeed, etc, etc. A fun game, and "free" play means that our family has spent more here than we did at EQ in monthly fees.With EQ, I really resented the weeks when I was paying but had no time to play. The attraction of the DDO model is being able to choose if and when you payg.

This sort of arrangement with a third party is disquieting, and frankly reeks of either desperation or some PHB boss or marketing type who has no understanding of their customers. As the parent said: I will stick around a short while, hoping to hear that they regret ever trying such a bone-headed idea.

F2P doesn't mean Free (1)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about 4 years ago | (#31843676)

You payed 200, for 5 months. At 15 per month P2P, it would have cost you 150 for TWO subscriptions. Since the game is old, you could pick it up for a tenner or less.

So, F2P, is more expensive.

Geez, who would have figured. Nickles and Dimes. They add up.

Re:F2P doesn't mean Free (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31843884)

$15/month for 5 months = $75 per account. Two accounts is $150. To copies of a pay-for game is between $100-120. So that's $250-$270. And, of course, the F2P model is more lump-sum. Over time, when subscription based games keep paying, you don't. But if you look at some small period of time with a high cost association, it might look worse.

Of course, F2P games generally do generate more revenue than subscription games because they generally offer some low-cost items of value that people want. Such as XP bonus potions and stuff.

Re:F2P doesn't mean Free (1)

dschl (57168) | about 4 years ago | (#31844268)

Your calculations need to look forward as well. I have over $50 in Turbine Points (non-tradeable currency that can only be used in the Turbine store to buy adventure packs and account features) just sitting there waiting to be spent. I can now play all of the best content in the game until the servers are shut down without spending another penny. I've been playing for six months so far, and in another six months, the cost of my own account ($130) will be less than $11 per month, and dropping. Unless they release enough compelling content that I end up burning through my stockpile, I might be able to get my average spending into the $5-8 a month range in 2011. Since I've been buying content on sale as I go, and have not even entered most of the mid-high level content I bought (Gianthold, Vale of Twilight, etc), I fully anticipate that I might finish 2010 with what I've already bought.

The cost of F2P can really add up for people who want some of the optional stuff from the store, like trinkets that improve the loot from chests, character rebuilds, or potions that increase XP earned by 20% for a few hours. Apart from a shared bank and an additional character slot, I only spend money on adventure packs. Here is a guide to playing for "free" [ddo.com], written by a gamer. It is theoretically possible to play without spending a penny, but I have more money than time. So far I have found it well worthwhile, and I really like Turbine's model with the exception of this latest act of stupidity.

They're watching... (2, Insightful)

BigSlowTarget (325940) | about 4 years ago | (#31841522)

Does anyone else have an advertisement for DDO looming large in the upper right corner of Slashdot? Targeted advertising is creepy....

Re:They're watching... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31841710)

The Internet has advertisements? I don't see anything.

How about making Asheron's Call instead? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31841892)

Since we've been loyally paying our subscription fees for almost 11 years, and there are only about 200 or so people per server now at peak times. They refuse to merge the servers because it would be too much work and because of player housing issues. We have maybe 2000 players scattered over NINE servers. Yes you heard me. Support is NON-EXISTENT. Turbine supposedly has 1 team for all their games' support but they either aren't trained to handle AC issues or completely ignore them because when people apply for urgent assistance, it ends up unanswered for days or even weeks, until said player goes to complain directly to the developers on the forums. The entire game's development is handled by like 4 people or something (I must say I respect that tiny team for throwing out quality patches every month and large mini-expansions every year. Cheers to you guys.) If they consolidated the servers into a PK server and a normal server and made it free to play somehow, I think it would regain much of its former glory.

Not obviously bad... (3, Insightful)

steve buttgereit (644315) | about 4 years ago | (#31841928)

...and now that I have your attention let me explain that.

Look, Turbine is a company. They exist to make profit and along the way they incur costs (taxes, hardware, bandwidth, employees). Finding new ways to monetize their product is the right and proper thing for them to do and, as a customer of their products, I wish them all the success in the world in that endeavor.

The Offer Wall wasn't actually all that bad of an idea on the face of it... they offered a way for F2P players to get something that many, in these hard economic times, may not have even been able to do on their own... get some quick item store points with out laying out RL coin and doing so in a way that they didn't have to toy with game mechanics. Having said that... they were pretty stupid in the implementation.

They clearly didn't understand the 'rewards marketing' industry they chose to rely on enough to find a competent partner (if they existed), they didn't put much time or effort into the solution... based on a complete read of the forums it looks very slapped together (an assumption on my part, not having seen it first hand), and they didn't give their customers much credit for thinking very deeply about these sorts of things (and given the complexity of the game, they clearly misunderstand their customers).

As for me and my wife... we came to DDO because we are short on funds now-a-days and they provide a cheap way to be entertained without resorting to something like TV. We really like their game and the implementation (I'm an old AD&D player... so had to get use to it). We've even bought adventure packs from them. We'll give them a pass on this... that doesn't mean they will get a pass forever if they keep doing stupid stuff or if it's dramatic enough (as I'm sure some takers of their offer might feel). If they continue to fail to respect their customer base repeatedly they will fail themselves.... as well they should.

In the meantime, I hope they've learned their lesson from this fiasco... and continue to provide a great game.

 

This is what 'free' games gets you (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31842554)

People on slashdot are always arguing that 'information wants to be free'. regarding pirates as heroes and people charging for games as the enemy,
And yet when you see how the providers of 'free' games behave, surely it makes you realsie that the old system of trying a demo, then BUYING a game outright that you enjoeyd was far better, and far less dubious than this new mess.

LOTRO? DDO? Enough of this nonsense. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#31842556)

Turbine just keeps swinging the bat and missing with this crap. Go back to the tried and true; stop adapting existing stuff into MMOs and go back to making original content. Take everything that was good and wholesome about AC, the attribute/skill system, the experience system, experience passing to patrons, customizable armor, spell research, dodge-able projectiles, player housing, etc. Take it and code it into a modern spiritual successor; it doesn't even have to be AC3 as long as it's good. Modern graphics, modern features like an actual quest journal, things like that.

My respect for Turbine had already fallen. (1)

Delusion_ (56114) | about 4 years ago | (#31844304)

I liked Asheron's Call quite a bit, and Turbine was the first of the mass-market MMOGs not to take its customers for granted - Origin's (then EA's) Ultima Online management was clueless, and Verant's Everquest management was actively at war with its users.

Recently with DDO, however, they installed a torrent client for updates. Lest you have visions of World of Warcraft's torrent client that actively fetches updates then stops when it's done, Turbine uses Pando's Media Booster, a torrent client that starts on OS boot, and gives the user no indication it is running unless one goes into its control panel.

I took Turbine and Pando to task for this, and Pando did actually reply, but not much to my satisfaction.

http://www.unhelpful.org/2010/02/15/underhanded-and-sneaky-pando-ddo-online-and-turbine/

comments from forum (1)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | about 4 years ago | (#31847010)

They made the forum closed to non registered viewers not long ago. Guess they didn't want the rants to be public.

Mythic's billing fiasco, this games marriage with spam and malware, what is it with online games this week?

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