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Rise of Legends Heaven » Forums » General Discussion » Mard's Open Letter to BHG
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Topic Subject:Mard's Open Letter to BHG
Nut
Zekeling
posted 07-23-06 03:19 AM EDT (US)         
Hopefully direct links to other fan forums are not frowned upon here. However, I read a post tonight which struck me as extremely well-worded with regards to community feelings both about the upcoming patch delays & the bigger picture:

If you are up for a read, he posted it here. I responded with my opinions, and I think that thread could make for an excellent point of communication between the RoL community & its creators.

I would like to join Mard in inviting anyone who has an interest in this game community to read his excellent letter, and those who would like to respectfully share any concerns they have should do so.

AuthorReplies:
Carch
Zekeling
posted 07-23-06 11:46 AM EDT (US)     1 / 19       
Lovely.

Full of made-up statistics, unfounded naysaying, and ...

well, let's just say any post that uses the "word" JIZGASM doesn't get taken very seriously.

The bottom line for me is that this game was slaughtered by its publisher, who got it no advance press and built zero buzz around it. All the cool pre-release stuff came right from BHG, IIRC.

The finest game in the world will rot in warehouses if nobody knows about it.


_/\ C Sturgeon's Law: 90% of everything is crud.

[This message has been edited by Carch (edited 07-23-2006 @ 11:48 AM).]

Thorney
Zekeling
posted 07-23-06 12:27 PM EDT (US)     2 / 19       
Tempting to stir the pot but I shall not.

Six individual patches in the span of ten weeks. Kenneth, what is the frequency?

NaturalViolence
Zekeling
posted 07-24-06 09:16 PM EDT (US)     3 / 19       
It's a good letter, but it exaggerates to much and makes the protorush seem way more effictive and more powerful than it actually is.

Thats just my opinion though.

Evolved
Zekeling
posted 07-24-06 10:13 PM EDT (US)     4 / 19       
Well.

I'm noticing something rather interesting in the Modding Community: Modders are all heading back to a moddable game - RoN if they have it, or other games if not.

The modding community at RoN Heaven has increased massively since the release of RoL. While some of it can be attributed to display in stores as a new game's released etc, that doesn't account for all of it in any way shape or form.

The reason is the lack of modding capability. Here's a little ticklist:
RON
Skins Editable: Yes
Models Editable: Yes
Scales Editable: Yes
All useful XML files Editable: Yes

ROL
Skins Editable: No
Models Editable: No
Scales Editable: No
All useful XML files Editable: No, only some are editable.

Skins made up a lot of modding in RoN, modelling less so, but still some. Scale mods are a BIG part of modding - making units look different (eg: tiny groups of zeke's like I made for the demo in preperation for the Mod 'ZekeLand' which is now on hold).

The lack of modding is killing the fanbase of this game a lot. We have some files, but not many by any standards.

I came to RoL hoping to really mod it a lot - Zekeland V2 would be out by now, with my final version coming up soon, but not now.

Include more modding soon, or I'll think about recommending the deletion of all RoL modding forums on the grounds of lack of activity.

Get this BHG: Full Modding, and BHG will be undoubtably the greatest Developer I have ever heard of. How does that sound?
Just ring up Microsoft, tell them where to stick their stupid retarded corporate policies, and force permission to allow full modding from them! It isn't like they really give a dam. There's been NO advertising outside of the USA, or North America at least, for RoL - unlike the rubbish game Rise and Fall (I believe they copied it from Rise of series name but I've no real evidence) which had lots of UK Ads and was No.1 for ages, whereas RoL got in teh charts for quite a while, most notably at number 2, just through word of mouth by people like me ringing up their friends, family, and anything else they could think of saying about it, writing reviews in school newsletters, highlighting it in signatures the world over, AND more to promote it - imagine what it would have been like with an Ad campaign - which I could make in photoshop and powerpoint in 5 or 10 mins.

Oh yeah, links to other forums and the like are okay as long as they're useful to us etc, relevant, and aren't just blatant advertising.

[This message has been edited by Evolved (edited 07-24-2006 @ 10:15 PM).]

El_Capitan_
Hero
posted 07-25-06 00:56 AM EDT (US)     5 / 19       
Evolved, that's a very interesting reply. It made me write a post on my blog about it. In my opinion, the bulk of the community grows by the quality of the mods available for it. Look how Blizzard evolved to World of WarCraft. Look how Half Life evolved to CounterStrike.

I'm very surprised that there's a lack of modding support for RoL. From what I remember, BHG was very adamant when making RoN to have a great map/scenario/script editor.

I don't know who's trying to turn the RTS trend to market to the casual gamer, but it's destroying the genre. My opinion is that it probably saves money for the publisher not having to test the scenario editor as it would pose more problems due to bugs.

A game without modding can still be a great game, but a game with modding can be a great game, plus 100 more good games.

Timeless_OmO
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 01:07 AM EDT (US)     6 / 19       
Hey, El_Cap isn't dead! Great to see you around, man.

And you're right. Even though I don't play modded games, WC3 is a great example of a game that fricken thrived from Mods. Hero Line Wars, Dota, Sheep Tag, etc. It just drives in the hoards, so to speak.

Evolved
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 01:13 AM EDT (US)     7 / 19       
Yey, I made a blog post happen!

Anyway, when I saw the blue I thought you were from BHG, silly me :*) They really need to put which Developer you're from.

Anyway, that's the first time I've seen a VIP not from BHG post here. You make some really good points in yuor blog, you know.

Quote:

2. Research Labs built should only give +1 Research points instead of +2. When you have a Large city, they should give +2 Research points for every new one built. Great city, +3. This will slow down the Vinci gathering bonus just slightly.


That's a good idea, but it's just a little too much of a change for the Vinci.

Quote:

What caught my attention wasn't the infrequent patches. While I'm on this subject, Big Huge Games doesn't have the luxury that Blizzard has to publish their own games, where they can dedicate all their resources into patching their own games and releasing them to the public as frequently as Blizzard does.


Well, you're right again! I used to like Microsoft, now I hate them. How DARE THEY WRECK IT! THOSE FIENDS! THOSE EVIL PEOPLE! I love RoL, not that they seem to care.

PS: Which Developer do you actually work at?

El_Capitan_
Hero
posted 07-25-06 02:11 AM EDT (US)     8 / 19       

Quoted from Evolved:

PS: Which Developer do you actually work at?

*cough Microsoft *cough

^^

Evolved
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 03:39 AM EDT (US)     9 / 19       
Errrrrr....

Well......

*runs and hides*

Henara
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 09:04 AM EDT (US)     10 / 19       
lol, microsoft...

microsoft is great in making money!
but thats all they are great in!

is it that difficult to make good games like blizzard with about xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx dollar?????

but i think that money is needed to get the guys in leading positions new houses and large parties...

sad to know microsoft is behind bhg...

storm legion
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 09:26 AM EDT (US)     11 / 19       
better microsoft than EA...

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CrownofThorns978
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 10:46 AM EDT (US)     12 / 19       
agrees with storm 100000000000000%. That would have been terrible from word one.

I seek the means to fight injustice...
Evolved
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 11:00 AM EDT (US)     13 / 19       
Better Microsoft than EA but I'd also say better BHG than anyone else, though they don't have the money
Timeless_OmO
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 11:27 AM EDT (US)     14 / 19       
Casual and expert players alike love mods. My son and all of his friends played a TON of WC3 mods. IMO, this makes WC3 much bigger than it would be otherwise.
Thorney
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 02:43 PM EDT (US)     15 / 19       
Having your box sitting on the retail shelves branded with the Microsoft label is a Very Good ThingTM. That little bit of passive marketing gets the attention of many consumers more so than game reviews, any online information or even the merits of the game itself. This alone sold many copies of ROL.

Compared to other publishers, Microsoft game marketing has always favored traditional mass market; print ads, tv even trailers in theaters and continues to neglect the internet dating from before Mechwarrior and Allegiance.

For many other reasons though, still the best publisher you could pray for.

Glassmage
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 04:52 PM EDT (US)     16 / 19       
Antari is the worse.

you can't spell 'ignorance' without IGN.
storm legion
Zekeling
posted 07-25-06 07:49 PM EDT (US)     17 / 19       
the worst company related to games as far as i know is EA, they got sued even for not treating their work-force properly or something, and making every work-day a *crunch* day (crunching = when the game is close to completion they may add some pressure, and some staff may work more willingly to get the game done on time, but EA had crunching at the start of something and it only got worse by the end from what i read on some blog)

microsoft is pretty good as far as publishers go, the only reason people don't like them is because of this vision of microsoft being 'the man'


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[This message has been edited by storm legion (edited 07-25-2006 @ 07:50 PM).]

One_Dead_Angel
Seraph in Absentia
(id: One_Dead_Villy)
posted 07-28-06 05:57 PM EDT (US)     18 / 19       
actually EA wasnt the only one that had this problem with overworked employees that went to court about it. I recall some other publisher did as well either before EA's situation or maybe around that time. The thing is the video game industry is kind of a "young industry" and hasnt really had a lot these labour organizations enforcing any kind of work practices like say the auto industry. Top that off with a relatively young (as in age) work force that often has more workers skewed towards those who doesnt have to deal with family life (as in kids and a wife), and thus can and usually willing to spend more time working. Plus the nature of the business (which is more and more like film entertainment industry where people also often work insane hours, there was a documentary about how alot of the people in that industry died having car accidents driving while sleepy). It really comes down to project management, if you have realistic milestones and proper project management you really shouldnt even need "crunch time" or at the least shouldnt need to be working in crunch mode continously (which really means that there is really just too much work to be reasonably accomplished by any one who has a life outside of work).

[This message has been edited by One_Dead_Angel (edited 07-28-2006 @ 06:01 PM).]

jpinard
Zekeling
posted 07-28-06 11:12 PM EDT (US)     19 / 19       
As has been mentioned. MS is better than EA and Atari... but they could learn a lot from other publisher's who aren't all freaked about mods and 3rd party add-ons. Civ IV is an excellent example of modding opportunities done right.
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