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UO "Rockstars" and the community

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Fin of LS, Aug 14, 2010.

  1. Fin of LS

    Fin of LS Guest

    I just finished reading the Producers Update.

    I then read the comments from the community on that update.

    I am recently returned to UO, having played exclusively from 97 to 03, then having left to play every tiresome, ill thought out MMO on the market and I have this to say:

    Without a doubt the Devs of UO are the most communicative, open and forthright group in relation to informing their player base in the business. I am struck by their communication and frankly it is one of the reasons I feel there is hope for this 14 year old game and one of the reasons I returned--they do not treat their player base like mushrooms.(Keep them in the dark, feed them sh$t and expect them to develop into something) I salute them.

    The community, while better then any other MMO community I have ever experienced in many ways, appears to me to be a bit niave and doesnt seem to understand a basic fact: UO is a business, it follows a business model which must A. produce a revenue stream and B. make a profit. Any MMO that fails to do that shuts down ( you can make make a large list and insert here)

    The debate on a Classic shard is , in and of itself a classic example. No amount of lobbying from the community will cause this to happen if the developers believe it will not support the business model. End of discussion.

    So instead of talking about what it should look like in terms of what UO era; instead of talking about transfers from one shard to another ( and I remind you that makes no impression at all relative to the business model--those "transfers" come from accounts already being paid for) we should be producing ideas that will convince the Devs we intend to enhance the revenue stream and support the business model.

    For example, would you pay an additional $3 a month on your subscription to join a Classic shard? Would you pay a one time flat fee of $19 to join a Classic shard? Would you do all of the above an agree to a minimum one year participation contract , thereby guarenteeing a population and eliminatiing those who will try it for a week and leave? ( and as long as they paid for it, if they leave it will not adversely effect the business model for a year)

    I, for one, would love to hear your ideas on the Classic shard or anything else game related and how it would be paid for.
  2. canary

    canary Guest

    I just need to point out that you've been back in UO for less than 90 days, according to your previous posts. And you also stated you only played 'off and on' from 2000 to 2003.

    I'm not sure that exactly makes you an expert in stating how well the UO team does (or, usually, doesn't) communicate with its players.

    Just saying.
  3. Lord Urza

    Lord Urza Guest

    Well at least someone is being positive, negativity breeds negativity.

    Just saying.
  4. popps

    popps Always Present
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Feb 27, 2004
    Likes Received:

    I would pay extra, but under certain conditions.

    If I decide to pay more for my enjoyment of Ultima Online on a new shard, then I have to have justifications that this extra money is well spent.

    For me, this means that a new shard should be barred from any transfer, in and out, and that the opening of the new shard to players would only come AFTER the anti-cheat code is up and fully 100% running.

    I have HAD ENOUGH to find on my path when playing UO cheaters now and then.

    I want to finally be able to play Ultima Online cheats-free and not worry that when I PvP my opponent will be using scripts, hacks or who knows what or that the resource gatherer next door is scripting tens, hundreds of thousands of resources 24/7.

    These are for me the 2 main issues at the basis of deciding whether to put extra money for my enjoyment of UO onto a new shard.
  5. deadite

    deadite Sage
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend It's My Birthday

    Jun 17, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Well said. Just because someone is new, a returnee, or not a board warrior doesn't mean they aren't entitled to their opinion.

    That said, if the OP wants to jump in on the Classic Shard discussion, a good place to start is the stickies at the top of Uhall. Dig in!
  6. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend Campaign Supporter

    Mar 3, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Didn't you know if you want to get in with the "In Crowd" you gotta pay your dues in the Gloom, Doom, Bitchin' and Moanin' Club. It's better than owning an iPhone, I swear! It also helps if you smoke several packs a day and listen to Death Metal...
  7. Evlar

    Evlar Guest

    Plus, god forbid having a different opinion or sharing a well reasoned idea. Rather than talk about ideas or reasons for opinions, people prefer to continue personal vendettas or ridicule others thoughts, simply because it differs to their own point of view. rolleyes:
  8. Lady Storm

    Lady Storm Grand Inquisitor
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Feb 20, 2006
    Likes Received:
    I agree with you Lord Urza he is being positive and its refreshing.
  9. BajaElladan

    BajaElladan Certifiable
    Stratics Veteran

    Jun 2, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Hail Friend and Folks,

    It is my view that we must understand a few basic realities. The owners and investors who provide Ultima Online, our Beloved Virtual World, own and invest in order to make Profits. Profit is not a "four letter word," nor is it a bad thing. This is one Reality.

    The second reality is that UO is celebrating its 13th Anniversary of its Release in September, 1997. Much has changed during these 13 years. Hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of Players have purchased UO, created one or more Characters, and "played" or experienced Ultima Online. Some who participated in the Beta Test have played continuously. Some who purchased UO upon its initial release or shortly thereafter, have continued to play to the present day. Many others have left, returned, left, or passed away in Real Life. Out of the far greater number who have ever played UO, we have the much smaller number who currently play UO. Chose carefully how to discern and identify and even weigh input from those two separate groups. Regardless, the second Reality we must accept is that UO is an "Elder Statesman" of MMORPG products.

    The third reality involves perception. There is a cliche that "perception is reality." Nice catch phrase but perception isn't always reality. An accurate perception may reflect reality just as an inaccurate perception merely reflects error. It is my view that the strong "perception" of the Players is that UO has an aging player-base, and a declining player-base. Our perception is that death, infirmity, economic downturns and real life challenges are slowly but steadily reducing the number of our Players. Only Mythic Entertainment (ME) knows if our perception IS Reality.

    These Realities, I believe lead us to some reasonable conclusions. For UO to avoid demise it must at least maintain a number of Paying Subscribers and revenue stream to support all ongoing costs and returning an "acceptable" profit. Now, I am not a business expert, nor really any kind of expert. However, I believe myself to be imaginative and creative, and a lover of "science-fantasy" fiction and lore. I see at least two perspectives from which to see our way forward. One is the business-like, pragmatic, "how do we maximize income and profit" approach. Another is the "science-fantasy" fiction and lore approach combined with creativity and imagination which asks a different question; "how do we fashion our virtuality to maximize Player satisfaction, enjoyment, and FUN, for the greatest number of Payers?" I believe this latter approach or question to be the more important one.

    If our Developers focus upon adapting and enhancing "our sandbox" so that it becomes the virtual playground of choice for large numbers of Players, at a cost affordable during even economic down-cycles, then Ultima Online will continue to surprise and amaze in its future as it already has in its past. However, in my view, the finest, most enjoyable fun and satisfying virtual playground of choice, is one where the Player is free to choose from seemingly limitless choices, their own play-style within the "sandbox." Don't "herd, lead, or force," us into some developers perception of what our choice should be.

    In conclusion, I began playing in this, my Beloved sandbox, in 1997 and have payed continuously ever since. I encourage our Investors and Developers to never lose sight of the "glitter" in the sandbox, which is fun, challenge, and enjoyment. I encourage YOU, our Players to have fun in the sand relying on OUR own imaginations and creativity to do within the sandbox things we enjoy, achieve, overcome, and share, in essence to enter the sandbox and build not only awe-inspiring sand castles, but our own awe-inspiring virtual Reality!!!

    Lord Elladan of Trinsic/Baja
  10. Babble

    Babble Guest

    I think the developers should not develop a classic shard.
    The freeshard community does a decent job for it and there is no need for EA to compete with them.
  11. Nyses

    Nyses Lore Keeper
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Jun 10, 2008
    Likes Received:
    I agree about the "UO is a business". Communication however, I have a different take on.

    Some communication is very valuable, some "communication" is just a bunch of words that do not tell anyone much at all. I feel more like the communication in UO today, comes as a result of past dev teams and things like the 5 on Friday and the fact they would hop on the boards and post. What I mean is that, because the community got used to some level of Dev communication, we expected it, and the current Dev team seems to feel it is expected of them too.

    As for other MMO games and communication I cannot comment on most, I only played Everquest and WoW, other than UO. As for WoW, there was no need to communicate, stuff was fixed about 3 seconds after it was discovered it was broken or not functioning. And, WoW already runs punkbuster, I heard there were still programs to cheat with, but they (WoW team) were activley doing something, from the get go.

    Yes, I know UO is old and there were not cheats then (actually there were) But how many "new" clients have we had? All we needed was ONE that was new and manageable from a DEV standpoint, and LOOKED and FELT like UO for the playerbase. If I wanted to play Diablo, I would, if I wanted to play WoW still, I would.

    Anywho, the dev team does a great job with what they have to work with, I believe. How long can you keep a 71' Mustang running when you are using bubble gum and bailing wire? At some point just remake the car, but we DO NOT WANT an 85' Mustang! The new models that are all retro though, nice!
  12. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Guest

    I would pay an extra $3 a month to have a 2nd home on another shard.
  13. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Considering a Classic shard would require lots of initial developer resources and very little upkeep, I think a "UO Eternal" lifetime membership would be good.

    Say.. US$250, one time, per account, no ongoing fee. That would take less than two years before you were essentially playing for free.

    If you only got 1000 subscribers to the shard, that's a quarter million dollars development fund. Not a huge amount but consider also that many design assets.. client, art, music, sound, atlas, fiction, skills, etc.. are already done. It's largely only the server that needs rewriting. Not that that alone is inconsiderable, but the plans for it are already fairly solid.

    There'd be no new content, no client upgrades, no expansions, no third party apps, nothing to break with the Classic mandate. The only thing you'd need to keep it fresh and interesting is to put on a team of EMs.