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The Difference Between CCP and EA

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Llewen, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    For those of you who don't know, CCP are the publishers of EVE, a science fiction space ship based MMO. I played EVE for a relatively short time. It was fun, but I needed my fantasy fix, so I left it. Which brings me to the topic of my post.

    I'm going to talk about some of the differences between CCP with EVE, and EA with UO. These are in no particular order with a few exceptions:

    - There are the obvious differences, EVE is science fiction, UO is fantasy, etc. I'm not going to get into those. UO was released in 1997, EVE in 2003, but both are pretty ancient in computer game terms.

    - The first and most important difference. EVE's subscription base, according to the last information I have from before the recession, has throughout the years slowly, and steadily increased. By all accounts and from all appearances, UO's has slowly but steadily decreased.

    - EA is a multinational behemoth in the gaming industry with resources at it's disposal that CCP can only dream of, and a long list of supposedly successful products in it's catalogue. CCP is essentially a small, independent game publisher, with one, as far as I know, one product.

    - CCP never charges for an expansion, and as far as I know has never sold in game items in a store for real world cash. You can buy game time, that's it. The monthly subscription fees for both UO and EVE are pretty close, but we all know that with UO every year there is a new expansion, or some new crap that everyone simply "must have" that they sell in the UO Game Codes store that easily adds up to another $20 - $50 US, per account.

    - Now for the difference that lead me to post this thread. I played EVE for a few months. I've played UO for over seven years now. I've quit UO in the past as well, once in 2002 for four years, and once in 2007 for two years.

    Every now and again, not often enough to be annoying I get a news letter from CCP, or a friendly reminder that I still have an account along with an offer of some free game time if I re-open it. If I wanted to I could remove my email from CCP's mailing list, they are a reputable company, but I've never felt the need to, and I like receiving updates on their latest expansions, etc.

    Even though I have had three accounts that have been open for significant periods of time I have never received anything from EA. No reminders that UO still exists. No newsletter bringing me up to date on the latest additions to content or story lines. No special offers to entice me back. Nothing.

    I'll just repeat the first difference in my list. Throughout the years, as far as I know, EVE's active subscriber base has steadily increased. UO's subscriber base has steadily decreased. It seems pretty clear to me from looking at my short comparison what some of the reasons for this difference could be.
     
  2. Lord Chaos

    Lord Chaos Always Present
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    Damn quitter.
     
  3. Capt.E

    Capt.E Guest

    Well it is alot easier to go from nothing to something than it is to go from every online gamer to where UO is now. Just a thought. I mean besides starcraft, UO was the only thing like it. Now there is some serious competition for online gamers.

    I do support the "Why the heck doesn't EA cough up some bucks for advertising?" movement though.

    The funny thing is that when I mention UO to gamers they laugh at me :confused:. Most are like "Wow, that game is still around???" To which I reply, "Yes, it is, and it is by far the best it has ever been." Then they say,"same graphics???" and i say "heck yeah, but they made a newer client that has WoWish graphics, noone plays it, but if your into that kinda eyecandy you still log into the same server as everyone else" I invite them to my shard and tell them about free gametime, noone has ever followed up though. Most are so deeply entrenched into WoW, there is no hope of ever seeing the sun.

    Anyhoo...Have a good one. E
     
  4. Hildebrand

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    I had tried EVE's Trial. It's a pretty good game, but I don't have time to put into it, so I let it go once my trial was up.
    At least I got to see what it's all about.

    I agree with Llewen's points though.
     
  5. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Without being too pedantic about genre, as I feel such definition normally detracts from what is important, I would say UO is more science-fantasy. I only mention it because there is a tendency to lump UO into the medieval category, which is far more misleading than helpful.
     
  6. Babble

    Babble Guest

    EVE is like wow a phenomenon.
    One of the few mmos which ist steadily gaining subscribers over the years.

    And as EVE for now is their only game they enhance it all the time.
    Did you know they hired an economics professor to check out EVE's economic system?
    It also only has one shard for all the world and is the game with the highest amount of players logged in the game at the same time.
    :)
     
  7. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    At some point EA decided that UO wasn't worth marketing anymore. They were wrong. Dead wrong. And even when they did attempt to do some marketing, they didn't do it intelligently. I know that UO actually has a marketing budget again for the first time in years. Let's hope they have learnt something from companies like CCP.
     
  8. Evlar

    Evlar Guest

    So using the EVE model, would consolidation of shards be a sensible approach for UO?

    Certainly, I understand the many reasons against shard mergers, but for the few new, or more likely, returning players, signing onto a poorly populated shard isn't very encouraging.

    More people = more interaction with other players. One of the key points for any MMO.

    As an aside though, I've often fancied a go at EVE, it certainly looks the part. Sadly I probably haven't got the time to give it a good go though, these days.
     
  9. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    Well, I don't think UO can take much inspiration from the actual game EVE, even though I think early UO did certainly influence EVE's rules set, but they can certainly learn a lot from the way CCP has marketed EVE.
     
  10. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    Well you are right. LBR certainly added that element to it.
     
  11. HD2300

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    Graphically EVE is beautiful. UO has 1999 graphics.

    Competition-wise UO has so many competitors WoW, Everquest, DDO, LOTRO, Darkfall, Mortal, AoC, WAR, etc etc. EVE only has Star Trek online.

    That said email campaigns are very cheap and ones like the return to brit campaign (one month free) do work.
     
  12. maroite

    maroite Guest

    Eh... I played EvE. I wasn't impressed.

    The single player games like X Terran Conflict are 100x better than EvE.

    Also, define "growth" and I'd like to see a break down of their actual subscriptions, active, non active, and trial before I say EvE is "growing".
     
  13. Exgirlfriend

    Exgirlfriend Journeyman
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    I have a Two year old EVE account, the game is ok, it has nice graphics. The game take's FOREVER to gain skills at, Some take 24 days to level..And the learning curve is almost straight up. It commands patience. The PVP is sorta lame. UO is a much more fluid game when it comes to pvp. I play eve when I get sick of UO and that’s not to often...
     
  14. Maybe EA should buy eve and ruin it. :-D
     
  15. Lord Chaos

    Lord Chaos Always Present
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    They likely know that better than you whether UO is worth marketing or not. It certainly doesn't seem to be and I kinda agree with them.
     
  16. American

    American Guest

    Bottom line is EA sucks.

    amirite?
     
  17. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    I've received monthly E-Mail newsletters from UO.com in the past. I forget how long ago they stopped doing them, but they used to E-Mail us information every so often.

    Recently, EA tried to push Twitter, something they haven't done as well as other companies. Their first effort over at Twitter is about a year old, and then they went back to UOHerald and MythicNews. Neither are E-Mail based but both can be subscribed to via RSS Feeds fairly easy, and Cal, as well as Logrus (although I haven't heard from Logrus in awhile) are both fairly vocal with the players of Ultima.

    (Ronnie of 2K Sports definitely has helped 2K defeat EA in terms of EA's "Live" series, which has suffered so greatly over the last five years that EA has abandoned their once successful line's name to save face).
     
  18. Nok

    Nok Lore Master
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    Some info about EVE.

    EVE does have a HUGE learning curve (much steeper than UO), takes lots of time to reach elite vet status, and appeals to very hardcore MMO gamers. True, EVE is beautiful to look at... and like UO, EVE is a true sandbox style MMO.

    In addition to EVE, CCP also has DUST514 in the works... DUST514 is a separate standalone game, but it takes it's lore from EVE and exists in the EVE universe. If you play both, what you do in one can affect you & others in the other game. CCP has (EVEGate) and is working on mobile apps to allow interactions and some game functions for both EVE and DUST514.

    Many quote EVE's subs at 300k when they had their 6th anniversary a few months ago... that was then, they're actually up over 350k now. CCP keeps the EVE current, and releases regular patches & expansions... but the biggest key to EVE's success, is the attention given to the community.

    CCP is HIGHLY proactive in reaching out to, developing relationships with, and promoting all the fansites in their community. They attend most of the consumer shows, use social media, publish a magazine, have a player fest every year... and constantly want to hear from the players. CCP has a great community team (including Chrissay formerly of UO)... they are EVE's best advertising and marketing.

    Hopefully EA & Bioware will pump some funds Bioware Mythic's way for UO; skip the print & media ads, build the community back up for now till there is something to advertise (which sounds like something is coming for those that are listening)... or better yet also have a "Biofest" that includes all the IPs (like UO).
     
  19. WarderDragon

    WarderDragon Babbling Loonie
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    You have me curious.

    What makes Ultima Online a 'Science Fantasy' as opposed to being a Medieval Fantasy?
     
  20. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    Pretty much every expansion after T2A :p I mean, can't be truly medieval if you name your third expansion renaissance -- as far as pinning a "time period" on the fiction. But I think it was LBR which really derailed that medieval feel, due to the golems and all that. And then, much later, of course, you have expansions like the samurai empire, hehe.
     
  21. Babble

    Babble Guest

    Hmmm, I am not sure UO could handle it. EVE gets away with the one server for all as space is basically empty and they also have no collision detection.
    Though as areas of UO run on seperate servers they could create a new big facet consisting of the landmass of 10 servers and then let he players migrate? Though the graphic files would be huuuuuuuge and putting content into it would also be quite an undertaking.

    Newer games Darkfall/Mortal Online/Earthrise all will try to go with 1 server method, but then they also do not expect too many customers.

    One thing I think CCP did right was learning skills in realtime while you are playing.
    Sure you cannot powerplay, but you can play it then a lot more casual too.
     
  22. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    *coughs* Never even seen the EC, have you. "WoWish graphics" gave you away.
     
  23. Hildebrand

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    EVE publishes books based on that universe. Perhaps it keeps that universe grounded and coherent.
    I would've loved to get occasional books from Bioware/Mythic based on Ultima. Something that would tie it all together. Right now, I'm tired of our fractured, inconsistent mini stories.
     
  24. Evlar

    Evlar Guest

    Although a completely different genre of game, the Football Manager series (or World Wide Soccer Manager, as known in North America), has always been a mostly text and statistics based management simulation. The developers though, have realised that they need to keep up with the times and that people do want "shiny" graphics. Each annual release, the user interface is polished and fine-tuned, plus the game now features a 3D match engine, so users can actually watch the games, instead of just relying on statistics and text commentary.

    Feedback from players is extremely important to the designers of the FM series and they have large groups of players involved in beta-testing and design feedback. It's the players who actually suggest most of the best content ideas for the game, who provide research on teams and players, because they tend to spend more time actually playing the game, than the designers ever will. With this game, a number of players suggested a "Tactics Wizard", to help those struggling to get to grips with that side of the game. Groups of players worked with the game designers, to come up with the UI and settings required and it's been a great success.

    In an expansive game like UO, one of the best mediums, would be for the designers to engage more fully with the players. If players believe that their thoughts and suggestions count for something and could actually see the light of day in game, that commands great loyalty and encourages more players to take part, to take real ownership of their game. The more the designers distance themselves from the players, the less a "part" of the online world the players feel.

    It's for the same reason that EVE has a strong player-base. The developers seem happy to encourage and support interaction more fully, between themselves and the players. As well as the game itself, the developer/player relationship, makes players feel more a part of the game they play and more valued.

    I would argue that it's sweeping changes, without more consensus of opinion and two-way feedback, that's placed UO where it is today.

    When many veteran players, who know the "game" from a playing perspective, far more intimately than the designers, leave feeling their thoughts go unheard or unappreciated, then that really is something to worry about.
     
  25. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    You sound bitter. Are you bitter? Did losing the third party cheat detection battle make you bitter?

    UO is utterly unique in the world of MMO's and it could easily be aggressively and successfully marketed. What has happened is, EA is myopic when it comes to MMO's, and is locked into this software development model where any title over a year old is no longer worth promoting.

    They simply don't "get" MMO's. Mythic understands MMO's, and let's hope that that understanding extends to Mythic Bioware. I can imagine it has been pure hell trying to get necessary funds to properly develop UO and DAoC from EA's management.
     
  26. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    Have you ever played any of EA's sports games? They flat out sucked. No wonder they went belly up when some other successful company entered the market. Forget MMO's, sometimes I think EA simply doesn't get gamers and gaming.

    I've seen one product from EA that I would consider to be to top notch in it's field, and that is Pogo. My sister is addicted to it, and even though it doesn't interest me personally, I can see why. EA does a very good job with Pogo.
     
  27. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    EA had little competition during the early to mid-90s, when they first developed Madden and what would become NBA Live in its second year. Madden 94 and NBA 96 were perhaps the best of their time, and comparable to anything that came after until the end of the 90s.

    In 2009, 2K Sports released NBA 2K10, their 10th in that series, with loads of game-freezing bugs across all platforms. Game development in the sports realm is shoddy all around right now.

    When it comes to console gaming, cartridges played a lot better than roms, which hardly if ever froze up. The long data loads on roms creates unstable situations similar to PC gaming, and now all gamers experience regular crash and freeze moments due to poor programming and moving parts; while the music industry evolved via flash memory and MP3s, the gaming industry devolved, in my opinion. Cartridges for life!

    Anyway, if you are interested in either the Live series or Nintendo sports, I wrote an extensive review of NBA 2K10 for the Wii awhile back, along with a brief history of how NBA video games have progressed over the years on Nintendo home consoles. But to get back to your original post, I don't think it's fair to say EA does not try to communicate with its Ultima users. Also, if you've really played UO for 7 years I find it hard to believe you have never received an E-Mail from Ultima; and like I suggested in my previous post, if you really want E-Mails, you can just use an RSS aggregator and get information in an E-Mail-like fashion from the Herald, or Twitter.
     
  28. G.v.P

    G.v.P Stratics Legend
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    And by the way, if Bioware makes a Dragon Age MMORPG, consider EA back on top. Such an amazing game.
     
  29. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    Well that was a very long time ago - several generations in fact when it comes to video games. But maybe I shouldn't be so hard on EA. I just get frustrated when I see the way they treat UO and the teams which continue to develop UO. And everything I've ever read about the corporate culture at EA makes my skin crawl...
     
  30. MalagAste

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    As to getting newsletters from EA about UO.

    I do get them on occasion.

    I do believe that somewhere in the registration screens you have to check some box that says it's ok for EA to send me messages. If you don't... then you'll receive NOTHING.


    As to Books and Playguides and things Prima used to put out books/playguides for UO... I infact have 3 of them. And I treasure them. The last one put out was AoS I believe. Such a very, very long time ago.

    I always wished they would do another one with all the new stuff in it.

    EA/UO also hasn't put out a proper map in forever. I had a whole collection of them hanging on my wall at one point. Since they too have fallen by the wayside I haven't got them up anymore.

    I often wonder if EA overstepped things with AoS as isn't that when the whole figurines came out too? I have most of those as well... Always wished I could get action figures made of my own characters... that would be fun wouldn't it?

    Anyway a girl can dream can't she?

    But I do think EA needs to move up in the world. New better improved Graphics wouldn't hurt. Until that is done though I highly doubt UO will ever get much advertising.

    If I am dreaming of things though I am forever hoping for the day we all wake up and log in and find we've upgraded to true 3d. I'd be so excited.

    Or I'll wake up and they will have fixed the problems with the axis and my paintings and things will no longer stick though my floors.

    *sighs*
     
  31. Alezi

    Alezi Lore Keeper
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    I get e-mails from EA regarding UO. They usually start with "Your subscription to Ultima Online expires..". rolleyes:
     
  32. SchezwanBeefy

    SchezwanBeefy Lore Master
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    I don't ever remember getting an email from UO since I started in 2000...
    But I remember getting a phone call from one of the characters to like, advertise for the new expansion. I was maybe 14? It was the weirdest thing and I remember sitting there in shock before looking at the phone and hanging up...
     
  33. Splup

    Splup Guest

    I was already waiting for comparison between CCCP and EA
     
  34. Capt.E

    Capt.E Guest

    actually I was refering to the KR launch, and the EC isn't quite legacy. Sorry.
     
  35. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    CCCP are way better hockey players... :)
     
  36. Martyna Zmuir

    Martyna Zmuir Crazed Zealot

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    Heh. KR was still about 10 years and a whole dimension away from even approaching WoW graphics at their worst.

    Your right that the EC isn't legacy. And thank the gods for that.
     
  37. Capt.E

    Capt.E Guest

    my sentiments exactly...except i play legacy
     
  38. maroite

    maroite Guest

    Guys... EvE and UO aren't anything alike, aside from being games.

    If you like playing with Excel, you play EvE.

    If you like your gaming playing for you while you're offline, you play EvE.

    If you like working for months to build a character and then forget to clone and lose everything, you play EvE.

    If you like to "skill" your character for months in order to make yourself feel awesome only to go out and meet a titan and its fleet, then die and be humbled by the "vets", you play EvE.

    If you like to watch your game play itself and hope that the list of instructions you gave it wins the game, you play EvE.

    If you like scripts that decide the outcome of battle, and have no split second control over your "char/ship", you play EvE.

    EvE cators to a very niche group of gamers. A very small niche.
     
  39. blakew

    blakew Visitor
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    i played eve for a couple years it was fun but the power balance is very out of hand in eve ive been playing uo on and off since 2000 and i love it i hate the new client though but i agree i would love to see more advertisement and would like to see the amount of players at the bank like back in the old days
     
  40. TheScoundrelRico

    TheScoundrelRico Stratics Legend
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    Biggest difference between EvE and UO...I play and pay for EvE and not UO.

    Any other players out there, I am TS Rico in game and play a looter, lol...la