Author Topic: Call to Action: Thank the media  (Read 195546 times)

Profit

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #680 on: April 15, 2013, 11:27:13 PM »
This isn't exactly COH related, but it kinda is.

http://kotaku.com/we-need-better-video-game-publishers-472880781

TimtheEnchanter

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #681 on: April 15, 2013, 11:33:10 PM »
This isn't exactly COH related, but it kinda is.

http://kotaku.com/we-need-better-video-game-publishers-472880781

Notes can be posted on that image. Just sayin'  8)

JaguarX

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #682 on: April 15, 2013, 11:45:21 PM »
Notes can be posted on that image. Just sayin'  8)

I read that story in that link and some how it all sounds strangely familiar. Very familiar. 8)

TimtheEnchanter

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #683 on: April 16, 2013, 12:15:23 AM »
I read that story in that link and some how it all sounds strangely familiar. Very familiar. 8)

I had been thinking that after things quieted down, perhaps Titan should broaden and become some kind of advocacy group with this purpose in mind.

JaguarX

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #684 on: April 16, 2013, 12:17:12 AM »
I had been thinking that after things quieted down, perhaps Titan should broaden and become some kind of advocacy group with this purpose in mind.
my thoughts exactly.

Segev

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #685 on: April 16, 2013, 12:51:43 PM »
This is actually not a problem exclusive to game publishers, from what I've seen. While I tend to be very pro-business, and even pro-big-business, there is a culture and class that have evolved in the last half-century that are trained to do nothing but "manage business." These are the guys who go to a big-name college (often of a politico-economic persuasion that is openly hostile to private enterprise, which always fascinates me that people who graduate from these would WANT to go into business), are talented at networking in the business world, and learned enough about how to structure a contract to make short-term windfalls based on killing geese that lay the golden eggs in order to sell the rare meat once. They then cash in that contract, pat themselves on the back for raising stock values in the short-term, and get hired at the next job with a bigger salary, promising to make the next company equally suddenly-more-successful.

Their reputation never seems to include the mess they leave behind as the company suffers under its new leadership. New leadership which promptly blames the old (correctly), but takes the same sorts of actions to shore things up and take credit for the short-term "savings."

The problem, even amongst the honest ones who think they're doing the company a favor by streamlining costs and cutting fat, etc., is that they don't bother to know the business nor the industry. They know a balance sheet, and they know just enough of the lingo of the actual industry to be dangerous. My grandfather worked for an extremely successful power plant construction company, and was the head guy in charge of about a half dozen plants (ranging from coal to nuclear). They were known for being on time and on budget, consistently, for 70+ years. Then, the son of the owner hired managers from this sort of school of business. They didn't do much harm at first, but they got to the point where a plant was finished being built, and saw that only 80% of the budget had been spent.

They congratulated the company and each other on how efficiently they'd managed it, and proceeded to assign bonuses to themselves based on that 20% of the budget being left.

Problem is, as anybody in the industry could have told them, that the plant construction is only about 80% of the work. There are still six months of extensive and expensive tests to be done. Because of these management types who knew not the industry, for the first time, the company had to take out a loan to finish the job.

These people weren't fired. I don't know the mechanism used to make it not their fault, but they continued to be a drain on the company until a few years ago, when they finally were let go.

From this article, it sounds like the problem with these game publishers is even worse: they have pretensions to artistry. Without being willing to enmesh themselves in the game, and get into the details to appreciate it from the ground up and from the top all the way down into the sub-basements alongside the developer, they seem to think their marketing expertise and money management skills somehow make them better able to design than the experts they're paying to do the design.

What one commenter to that article said is very accurate: the publisher SHOULD be doing marketing for the game the developer makes, not telling the developer to make the game to suit their marketing. The money is, however, flowing the way it should: out of the hands of the incompetent publishers and into other areas. Sadly, it takes time and is not without pain to the wrong people - the developers who get blamed because they signed contracts that for some reason gag them. (Not faulting them; I am sure those reasons are good; I just know I'd want more of a partnership with any investor trying to make "my" game a success, because while I trust people to a point, I don't tend to trust people where my livelihood is at stake. And that might drive me to take less money in what I view as the short run of the next five years in order to make something that I think will stand much more strongly and make me and my partners a lot more money over the next 15.)

At the Phoenix Project, we're working really hard to work together, as a team, with input up and down the chain being as informed as possible about whys as well as what is going on, and why what can and can't be done can and can't be done. Because it is a partnership; even when a foot must come down on an issue (because sometimes, a choice just has to be made, and not by committee), we strive to make sure it comes down with full understanding of everything that choice means. (Admittedly, we're developer AND publisher, at the moment, with no particular prospects for an outside publisher. So we have not experienced the potential outside influence that could create. We will, if we are so fortunate as to get an offer of support from a publisher, be certain to make clear that we are not going to change design decisions on a whim, so...well, we'll see if any offers stay on the table after that. It's not that we'd turn it down nor begrudge a publisher making his money; it's that...well, we all just read that article. It would have to be a partnership, with marketing selling what our game is, not trying to alter it to fit marketing.)

johnrobey

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #686 on: April 16, 2013, 04:53:55 PM »
Dear Segev,  I very much enjoyed reading everything you had to say here.  I can't add to the conversation, but feel i learned some, so Thank-You!!
Also best to you and the team at the Phoenix Project!!  With appreciation to you and the Heroes & Villains team.  Personally, i think both Projects Z are gonna be way fun to play!!   :)

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #687 on: April 16, 2013, 06:54:43 PM »
I had been thinking that after things quieted down, perhaps Titan should broaden and become some kind of advocacy group with this purpose in mind.

Anything that might help to run the corporate scum out of town would be a help - they've been polluting gaming for too long now.
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JetFlash

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #688 on: April 17, 2013, 05:38:39 PM »
This is actually not a problem exclusive to game publishers, from what I've seen. While I tend to be very pro-business, and even pro-big-business, there is a culture and class that have evolved in the last half-century that are trained to do nothing but "manage business." These are the guys who go to a big-name college (often of a politico-economic persuasion that is openly hostile to private enterprise, which always fascinates me that people who graduate from these would WANT to go into business), are talented at networking in the business world, and learned enough about how to structure a contract to make short-term windfalls based on killing geese that lay the golden eggs in order to sell the rare meat once. They then cash in that contract, pat themselves on the back for raising stock values in the short-term, and get hired at the next job with a bigger salary, promising to make the next company equally suddenly-more-successful.


AKA an "MBA".  That little acronym has become a very, very dirty word in tech circles (and others I would suspect).

eabrace

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #689 on: April 17, 2013, 06:20:04 PM »
AKA an "MBA".  That little acronym has become a very, very dirty word in tech circles (and others I would suspect).
True story, that.  When a coworker of mine handed his paperwork for education reimbursement to our manager, she said, "I really hope this isn't for an MBA."  We laughed.  (It was for an MS in Computer Engineering.)
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TimtheEnchanter

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #690 on: April 17, 2013, 06:32:04 PM »
Segev, you know my views, and even I've considered going for business administration.

I have very logical reasons for it though, and it's probably the same reasons that so many pursue it. We live in an age where degrees can become obsolete just as quickly as an apple Phone. But...

#1. It's the only degree I'm confident would actually still be relevant by the time I finished it (different professions rise and fall in value, but business itself doesn't)
#2. It's more versatile than any other degree and can be applied to literally ANY job (even if it's just the psychology), because all jobs are business.
#3. If all else fails, it's useful for entrepreneurial endeavors.


Segev

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #691 on: April 17, 2013, 06:37:53 PM »
Oh, there's nothing wrong with an MBA. The problem is when people get them and assume that's all they need to know. An MBA gives you tools to manage something that you already understand as an industry. Too many assume they needn't know anything about the industry except who pays what to whom and the name of the product; all businesses, they think, are the same.

This is, I believe, a failure in MBA programs, that anybody can get the degree and think that way, but...well. I think a lot of the professors believe it, themselves. And since they never HAD to be in business...

srmalloy

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #692 on: April 17, 2013, 08:44:13 PM »
AKA an "MBA".  That little acronym has become a very, very dirty word in tech circles (and others I would suspect).

The concept that a manager doesn't have to know anything about what the people they manage actually do -- that modern management practices can be universally applied to any business or group without regard to what that business or group does -- is something that I still don't understand.   MBA -- 'Manages Business Abysmally'.

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #693 on: April 17, 2013, 08:52:35 PM »
My best guess is that it's a combination of three things:

1) A politico-economic bias that says business is evil which permeates academia. This leads to or stems from the assumption that money is a zero-sum game. Somehow, people use this with a "if I don't, somebody else will" mentality to justify going into business anyway. This contributes to the idea that they needn't know the business itself by way of thinking it's all about monkeying with accounting and money numbers, and the business is just there to be exploited.

2) Professors who have increasingly been divorced from the real world. Academia has become one of the wealthiest, most perk-laden professions one can get into, and part of its comfort comes from a lack of need, in many fields, to test one's theories. It's all about finding a theory that sounds good and arguing it well enough to get research funding. Research funding generally used to dig up sources that support your theories more than actually testing them out. This leads to the problem because the professors teaching it have a lot of theory and no practice, so they teach things that sound good but have little basis in reality. Like the idea that business is business and can be managed the same way no matter what it does.

3) A cultural rot in the managerial levels of businesses, where those who knew better have more or less disappeared due to retirement and the like. This means that most working at those levels were educated with that mistaken notion, and hire newbies who adhere to it as well. They build their golden parachutes and use their extensive training in sophistry to convince their customers it's a wise policy, and then use their wealth from their leech-like siphoning of capital from companies before moving on to prove they know what they're doing, when really, all they know how to do is make money off of an impending financial collapse (which they generally, knowingly or not, orchestrate).

dwturducken

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #694 on: May 07, 2013, 11:30:18 PM »
I wouldn't use the word "replace," but there's no word for "take over for you and make everything better almost immediately," so we just say "replace."

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #695 on: May 08, 2013, 06:23:35 AM »
An interesting perspective on loss:

http://massively.joystiq.com/2013/05/07/the-soapbox-your-mmo-is-going-to-die-and-thats-ok/

it was an interesting read, but i feel how they are putting it is that all mmos are exactly the same so if one shuts down you have dozens of other options to move on to, they do say there may be unique happenings in the game but the overall tone feels like they are saying all mmos are the same

i would dare them to try to find anything that was like coh and i bet the best they could come up with is CO which i cant even stand to look at let alone try and play

dwturducken

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #696 on: May 08, 2013, 12:04:45 PM »
Yeah, I can't say I agree, but it was an interesting contrast to the panel of heavies in the industry saying the exact opposite. :)
I wouldn't use the word "replace," but there's no word for "take over for you and make everything better almost immediately," so we just say "replace."

corvus1970

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #697 on: August 27, 2013, 12:29:37 AM »
While I appreciate the points that the article makes and the positive way the writer chooses to embrace the death of an MMO, I just don't agree on a personal level. I might feel differently if I could find another Heroic online gaming experience that allowed me to create original characters and was fun to play as opposed to annoying, but I have yet to find it.

Still, for those who can move on, kudos!
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Illusionss

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #698 on: December 02, 2013, 12:01:52 PM »
An interesting perspective on loss:

http://massively.joystiq.com/2013/05/07/the-soapbox-your-mmo-is-going-to-die-and-thats-ok/

*frowns deeply*

"Sure, we miss our characters, their assets, and those old familiar settings. But every hour we spend in our normal MMO is an hour we could have spent experiencing something completely new."

WHUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUT.

I am glad there is someone out there who can put something positive on this type of thing. But you know, if my real-life house burns down with everything in it, including my helpless pets, I am not going to get home from work, survey the smoking ruins and say "Cool beans. Now I can experience a NEW house and buying all my stuff over again! Too bad so sad, cats. Wouldn't wanna be ya."

What people like this fail to understand is that an MMO I love is truly, my home. I don't like it when you burn my house down with my "pets" [alts] inside.

"The death of an MMO gives us a chance to set our characters free."

Yeah it sure does. Kind of like driving your faithful dog 50 miles away from the house, opening the door and shoving him out onto the shoulder of the road and then zooming off, humming "Born Free" as you go.

HOW ABOUT NO.

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Re: Call to Action: Thank the media
« Reply #699 on: December 02, 2013, 03:48:53 PM »