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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/28/2011 in Posts

  1. 14 points
    It's entirely up to the companies to decide how to interpret the NDA in relation to my comments. If they want to 'come after me', as you put it, they know who I am. I do appreciate your concern on that point as well as your taking the considerable time to weigh in on one man's observations and opinions. Insofar as the factuality of my statements are concerned, you are entirely at liberty to specify where I have been in error. As for naming names and talking shit, guilty as charged. In the event you happen to be one of those names to which the shit has been assigned, there's nothing I haven't said about your work that thousands of LOTRO players haven't said already. If you aren't, stop playing on the internet at work. A game dev should have better things to do. But seriously though...'GameDev' is the best handle you could come up with? With that level of creativity you may well have a future in mobile gaming at the very least.
  2. 13 points
    Hey there! I am SNy, and I used to play LotRO. Being a long time lurker over there and more recently here, I found that, after the latest developments, threads and comments, I just have to improve upon my original take on the "Turbine Dictionary of Contemporary English", with the initial version (still) being here. So, without much further ado, here comes a wall of text. Enjoy. --- Turbine Dictionary of Contemporary English v2, 2014-07-03, CopyLeft (L) SNy -- always [ˈɔːl.weɪz], adverb an indeterminate period of time that ends when Turbine sees fit; antonym: never (ref) used to denote facts that will never (refs) change (also ref foreseeable future) (quote) "The epic story will always be free to all players." answer [ˈɑːn.sər], noun a sequence of words (ref) supposedly intended as a reply to a question or issue, which it might or might not answer/address often worded (ref words) bluntly (ref blunt) and intentionally vague (ref honest) sometimes involves facts and/or data (refs) never ends with a period, because the CM is always calm, blunt and honest (refs) balance [ˈbæl.əns], noun or lack thereof, resulting from balancing issues (ref) and pertaining to a state where classes are under-/overpowered with respect to the environment (ie: mobs, ref challenge) and/or to other classes' capabilities (can apply to PvE as well as PvMP) balancing issue [ˈbæl.ənsɪŋ ˈɪʃ.uː], verb + noun, pl result of the... interesting... sequence of breaking existing (and possibly new) content/systems by the simultaneous implementation of unwise and/or incoherent changes (ref stat changes and skill bloat), poor scaling as well as class revamps (ref trait trees), a subsequent failure of internal QA (ref) to find, let alone correct, any of them, followed by not fixing and sometimes not even acknowledging them despite them being reported over and over in beta, releasing them to live, present annoyed players with blunt and honest answers (refs) and then leaving them broken for months on end with a few non-achieving attempts at fixes and more answers (refs) that might or might not hint at ongoing work to address them soon (ref) while hoping the players forget that one of the supposed key points for the necessity and appropriateness of switching to trait trees (ref) was to make balancing issues easier to resolve big battles [bɪɡ ˈbæt.l̩s], adjective + noun, pl formerly designated epic battles for the foreseeable future (ref) the be-all-end-all replacement of classic group content and raids (refs) characteristics are the utter irrelevance of class skills and the introduction of yet another new meta-game (ref) involving roles, ranks and promotions as well as lottery loot (ref loot mechanic) for rewards (ref) blunt [blʌnt], adjective rude, snarky, dismissive, condescending primarily in answers by the CM, often in conjunction with honest (refs) challenge [ˈtʃæl.ɪndʒ], noun or lack thereof, resulting from balancing issues (ref) due to a combination of stat changes (ref) and stat bloat, changes to core game mechanics (ref trait trees) and poor scaling Absense of challenge is evident from the possibility to solo (in the rest-of-the-world meaning of the word) on-level group content and even raids (refs). Members and self-appointed spokespersons (ref fact) of the silent majority (ref) sometimes try to refute this by pointing out that not everyone, and certainly not themselves, was capable of doing it, at which point there would be a characteristic *wooosh* sound to be heard in their vicinity, because the point that went right by them is that it is possible at all, when it clearly shouldn't be (and more importantly, hasn't been, in earlier incarnations of the game). One particular individual opted for the ridiculous notion that the linked videos of multi-minute fight with lots of mobs, action et al. might have been manipulated, basically calling them fabricated and misleading information (ref). character improvement [ˈkær.ɪk.tər ɪmˈpruːv.mənt], compound noun level up, re-grind equipment like legendary items (ref) and endure the frustrations of the lottery loot (ref loot mechanic) to then come to terms with a lack of end-game (ref) activities where said equipment (or even class skills, hello big battles (ref)) would be needed best supported by the convenience, not advantage, of the $tore CM, acronym Community Manager, a role description for a company representative responsible, among other things, for interaction and communication with the community Formerly held by a certain Mr. Heaton, AKA Sapience, who, for the great misfortune of game and community, appears to lack in certain social skills to do the designated job properly. He praises himself for giving blunt, honest answers (refs) and insists that it doesn't matter what you say but how you say it. What escapes him, though, is that this is a two-way street and ought to apply (doubly) for himself (again ref blunt, honest and answer). As can be constructed from above, he also has problems with the concept of respect, which is hard to earn, easily lost, and that, once lost, you can demand to be paid until you're blue in the face, at which point you're either getting ignored, or being poked fun at. This, then, appears to be the state he manouevered himself into. If you're wondering how he might have managed this feat, feel free to check out the authors personal highlights: what he had to say about messing with people's forum signatures and the impertinence with which he regarded forum complaints about the short login timer, after ignoring, for at least half a year, the glaring security hole that was their non-secured default forum/game login (including access to CC info, where appropriate). Funnily enough, after all the boo-hoo about not going to change a thing, this is him, later, burying the backpedal-post in a different thread. Then there's more along those lines, regarding the horrible new forum theme, where the advisable changes took such an astonishing amount of work that volunteers managed to make several much improved versions in mere hours and days after, investing a few hours, tops. No wonder they fall back to Twitter and that other site to broadcast essential information, seeing how they appear to have problems providing a decent, functional website for their own (and their customer's) needs. All of the examples above were from the aftermath of the overdue forum revamp in 2013. There are, of course, other remarks and incidents with other backgrounds, but they are simply too numerous to list here. cooperative game-play [kəʊˈɒp.ər.ə.tɪv ɡeɪm pleɪ], adjective + compound noun "grouping", short for "playing together in a group" (ie. more than one player, often at least three, but not to be confused with solo (ref)) to overcome some challenge and get rewards (ref) Something the silent majority (ref) of players has no interest in doing (ref fact and data) and which is, therefore, obsolete. On the landscape, fortunately for those players stating that LotRO isn't about grouping at all (ref fact), ~ has been made obsolete by inventing lottery loot (ref loot mechanic) so that by randomly whacking stuff others fight (for, say, a 1hp hit on a, say, 10M warband boss), the player in question gets the same rewards (ref) as said others. For group content (ref), it has been made obsolete and unnecessary by poor balancing (ref balancing issues) and the new levels of challenge (ref) whereby a group, should one even be necessary, can just DPS and be done with it. Why care for CC, aggro management, controlled DPS and positioning, anyway, when the skills for these features presumably had a major contribution to skill bloat (ref) and totally needed to go. Since, you know, player feedback suggested that full toolbars are just so very difficult to cope with (ref fact and data). data [ˈdeɪ.tə], noun mysterious, black-box-type collection of statistical and possibly other information pertaining to the game (servers) and/or its (their) operational parameters, presumably evaluated (ref data mining) to result in metrics and numbers that are then, void of any trace of their actual origin and applicability, presented as facts (ref) data mining [ˈdeɪ.tə ˈmaɪ.nɪŋ], compound verb process by which a large set of data (ref) is queried to deduce patterns and, ultimately, arrive at new information One often overlooked fact (in the rest-of-the-world meaning of the word) is that if the data (ref) isn't properly understood and/or the query is poor (the former facilitating the latter), the results are generally considered to be unusable and likely to answer everything but the intended question. At the same time, diagnosing the (in-)appropriateness of the query is a difficult and involved task. Now, given Turbine's track record (ref stat changes, meta-game, fix, performance problems and lag as well as loot mechanic), chances are that they have no idea how to formulate proper queries and end up with garbage information (ref fact and data). The constant use of blunt and honest answers by the CM (refs) in threads that touch on this topic is, if anything, reinforcing that impression. end-game [end ɡeɪm], compound noun content and activities for players to utilize and improve/hone the equipment/skills of their characters (ref character improvement) after those reached the level-cap for the foreseeable future (ref), this will be gimmicky grinds (ref meta-game) for solo (ref) players instead of meaningful, challenging group content and raids (refs) fact [fækt], noun a sequence of words (ref) claiming to be an assertion of something being true (or false), but without presenting the proof normally associated with such, and instead relying on a sufficient number of repetitions in answers by the CM (refs) and a rather static group of people claiming to speak for (ref ~) some silent majority (ref) to make it so often refers to data (ref) fabricated and misleading information [ˈfæb.rɪ.keɪted ænd ˌmɪsˈliː.dɪŋ ˌɪn.fəˈmeɪ.ʃən], verb + conjunction + adjective + noun label recently used by the CM (ref) for pieces of inofficial data or metrics pertaining to the state and/or development of the game as perceived by the vocal minority (ref) even when they cite their sources (eg. Turbine's own server login queue) or calculation methods and are easily cross-checkable against same (ref open and respectful discussion) fix [fɪks], noun a supposed improvement to issues (ref) with game mechanics or systems other than the $tore that more often than not fails to actually improve anything (ref balancing issues) or breaks completely unrelated other parts or systems of the game in the process (refer to Turbined), sometimes both at the same time in contrast to a hotfix (ref), a ~ will rarely arrive sooner than soon (ref) foreseeable future [fɔːˈsiː.ə.bl̩ ˈfjuː.tʃər], adjective + noun mostly used in negations, where it means: likely never (in the rest-of-the-world meaning of the word) (ref always and never) group content [ɡruːp kənˈtent], compound noun quests/instances that had originally been intended (and, prior to scaling them, used) for cooperative game-play (ref) in an environment designed to require the participation of and be challenging (ref challenge) for a group of players, but that can now be done solo (in the rest-of-the-world-meaning of the word) thanks to a complete lack of challenge due to balancing issues, stat changes (refs) with associated stat bloat as well as the introduction of trait trees (ref) honest [ˈɒn.ɪst], adjective vague, misleading, pretentious primarily in answers by the CM, often in conjunction with blunt (refs) hotfix [hɒtfɪks], noun correction for issues (ref) with the $tore or systems that get direct attention from the Turbine management (instead of just the customerspesky players) due to getting priority, these issues are addressed in record-time (as-in Turbine record-time which is roughly comparable to the time some other companies need to fix actual game issues) Hytbold [?], name of fictive city in Rohan interesting concept for giving players that prefer to solo comparable equipment to those that enjoyed grouping content. Implementation fell way short of its potential simply for being very poor (ref meta-game). A big part of it was a lack of built-in descriptions of all the hidden dependencies that basically called for a huge voluntary effort to document it for proper usage by Fredelas, and an excessive grind of daily repeatables for a straight 44 days to complete all of it. The latter actually penalized the target audience (which promptly managed to come up with some negativity of their own). On the other hand, the experiment has likely generated lots of data and resulted in interesting facts (refs) and should probably be regarded as a resounding success. internal QA [ɪnˈtɜː.nəl kjuːˈæ], adjective + acronym Quality Assurance and Testing group/department Rumour has it that this group is not actually empty, we just came to know that it consisted of at least one person who recently came from DDO and managed to get hopes up before the CM crashed the vocal minority party (of quite a few people) with blunt, honest answers containing lots of mentions of facts and data (refs), which instantly started a silent majority (ref) party (of quite a small number of people) with actual cheering about losing core facets of the game. Apart from said rumour, the long-standing, unfortunate impression is that this group simply doesn't do its job. issue [ˈɪʃ.uː], noun a reported or (rarely) confirmed problem or bug in game mechanics or systems that prevents affected parts of the game to function properly (ref WAI) or in a way that makes sense to those that actually play the game often said to be about to be addressed with some sort of fix soon (refs), unless it pertains to the $tore, in which case it will receive priority for the preparation and deployment of a hotfix (ref) sometimes reduced to non-issue, never declared a "dead horse" in answers by the CM (refs) legendary item [ˈledʒ.ən.dri ˈaɪ.təm], adjective + noun a type of extremely abundant item that drops from mobs of level 51 and higher; trash, junk, throw-away, rinse-repeat, dime-a-dozen Part of a convoluted and highly complex system (ref meta-game) that manages to frustrate players to no end and which Turbine "is happy with". Includes sub-systems, mechanics and items of its own: age, equip and item levels, points, tiers, ranks and meta-ranks (slotted crystals), relics and shards, identifiying, leveling, reforging, replacing, empowering, deconstructing, extracting and refining, xp-pills, different crystals and a host of various scrolls; not to mention the completely overloaded, cumbersome und un-intuitive UI elements (scrollbars, expandos, tabs, tiny icons, walls of text and tooltips with broken word-wrap, ...) to deal with all of it. loot mechanic [luːt məˈkæn.ɪk], compound noun system to generate and distribute "loot" (ref rewards) for overcoming mobs or mastering challenges (ref) The current incarnation AKA "lottery loot" is based on the combined abomination of open-tapping + remote (individual) looting mechanics for just about everything, starting with landscape mob kills to boss chests and all sorts of other rewards (ref). Turbine insists the RNG behind lottery loot works fine (which of course isn't actually the question/issue (ref answer)) in spite of reported indications of oddities and a previous incarnation of a Turbine-created (and long-ignored) issue with RNG-induced "randomness" of events, and refuses to further discuss the matter under threat of disciplinary action (ref blunt, honest, answer, fact and data as well as welcoming place and open and respectful discussion) meta-game [ˈmet.ə ɡeɪm], prefixed noun un-fun, grindy, brain-dead, meaningless, gimmicky, confusing, convoluted and/or half-finished and/or buggy and/or neglected and basically abandoned portions or systems of the game examples (in order of appearance): PvMP, reputation, housing, hobbies, legendary items, radiance, skirmishes, mounted combat, Hytbold, big battles and last not least points for trait trees (refs) mounted combat [ˈmaʊn.tɪd ˈkɒm.bæt], adjevtive + noun over-hyped and subsequently neglected gimmicky feature (ref meta-game) that leaves a lot to be desired. The problem in a nutshell is that mounted class skills/roles bear little to no resemblance to their classic counterparts (ref big battles), mounted class balance is not existing (compare mounted captain to mounted guard for laughs and giggles) and of course, performance problems and lag (ref) manage to make it an often frustrating experience. never [ˈnev.ər] adverb a void that will manifest itself as a period of indeterminate time when Turbine sees fit; antonym: always (ref) used to denote facts that will always (refs) be valid (also ref foreseeable future) (quote) "We will never sell gear with stats in the LOTRO Store." non-issue [nɒn-ˈɪʃ.uː], prefixed noun problem or bug with game mechanics or systems that Turbine deems irrelevant (ref WAI) open and respectful discussion [ˈəʊ.pən ænd rɪˈspekt.fəl dɪˈskʌʃ.ən], adjective + conjunction + adjective + noun Yeah, right (ref blunt, honest, answer, CM, silent majority, vocal minority and welcoming place). performance problems and lag [pəˈfɔː.məns ˈprɒb.ləms ænd læɡ], compound noun + conjunction + noun Hearsay, Somebody Else's Problem, Not Turbine's Fault, Must Be On Your End, Must Be Your Hard-/Software, Update Your Drivers, Deactivate Your Security Measures, Reinstall Your System; also: Works For Me, I NEVER Have Problems (bonus points by following up with no experience on a War-Steed, in Rohan or any of the graphically revamped regions), I Play This On Highest On A 5 Year Old Acer (ref answer, fact, data, welcoming place and open and respectful discussion) period [ˈpɪə.ri.əd], noun syntactical ('.') and, more imporantly, rhetorical element ('Period.') of answers (ref); synonyms for the latter: This Thread Has Outlived Its Usefulness, Closed, Dead Horse, Nothing To See Here, Move Along Never used in the always (refs) eloquent (ref blunt, honest) answers by the CM (refs), because he doesn't easily get annoyed. Often praised in its usage by the not-so-silent part of the silent minority (ref) as a tactful (ref blunt) response to members of the vocal minority when those keep bringing up issues the CM reduced to non-issues or declared WAI earlier (refs). Gladly used by the not-so-silent who appear to have been so blessed as to genuflect at the feet of their masterthe CM in his infraction proof crypt as a chance to ridicule the fabricated and misleading information that more trivial numbers of the vocal minority are likely to depart as a result of the open and respectful discussion at the welcoming place (refs) that is the official forum. powered by our fans [paʊərd baɪ aʊər fænz], adjective + preposition + possesive pronoun + noun Turbine's official motto It's an odd motto to have, considering that Turbine, the game company, appears to be powered by their fans in much the same way a gas turbine is powered by fuel: supply enough to continually burn it, produce lots of hot air in the process and use the output for something else. raid [reɪd], noun form of group content, formerly part of end-game (refs), recently declared to be everything that somehow involves grouping, done by some vocal minority (ref), not going to be improved upon in the foreseeable future (ref), a topic that supposedly received answers (ref) before and is therefore considered a (quote) "dead horse" reward [rɪˈwɔːd], noun spend effort + get nothing or be lucky + get everything, all thanks to the lottery loot (ref loot mechanic) silent majority [ˈsaɪ.lənt məˈdʒɒr.ə.ti], adjective + noun expression to convey the superiority complex of a part of the gaming/forum community that claims to be, well, in the majority (ref fact and data), if in doubt, posts containing lots of "I do", "I have", "I want", "I like", "I don't need", etc. are a good indicator to spot members The term as such is mostly found in posts that attempt to derail and ridicule threads critical of the current state or direction of the game, which would theoretically constitute an infraction-worthy violation of the CoC (ref welcoming place and open and respectful discussion), were it not for the practical enforcement regime of the CM (cue Yogi Berra quote and ref period). There is a not-so-silent part of the community, acting as self-proclaimed spokespersons (ref fact) of the ~ which, interestingly, happens to be a pretty static group that actively engages in the most open and respectful discussions, honest! (refs). Contrast this to the (recently closed) feedback thread (ref internal QA) with lots of irregular posters and their statements and remarks to get all the more reason of questioning facts and data (refs). skill bloat [skɪl bləʊt], compound noun tendentious expression hinting at the fact (ref) that there, somehow, had been too many skills, and that some of them supposedly did similar things (ref fact). Popular player demand rather wanted (ref fact) skills to be removed than to accept that easily confused players should organize what they got in a way that works for them. At the same time, popular player demand is said (ref fact) to request more levels and yet more skills, supposedly for a feeling (an illusion, if you managed to keep track of your stats) of progression. solo [ˈsəʊ.ləʊ], adjective With a companion or partner, in a duo. (quote) "The solo option allows two players to be in the instance together, but does not increase its difficulty when the second player joins." (Q5) soon [suːn], adverb term strongly favored by the CM, proudly presenting it as if it was his own cleverness that thought it up can mean anything from yesterday to foreseeable future (on a probability scale from never to always) (refs) often used when the CM is trying hard to not actually communicate, by releasing, in the vaguest possibly terms (ref honest), little tidbits about awaited fixes, content patches, or information pertaining to the state and direction of the game stat changes [stæt tʃeɪndʒɪs], compound noun, pl poorly thought-out, sometimes buggy or outright broken changes to what stats do and how their contributions are calculated and work (or fail to do same), showing poor understanding of existing game systems (ref balancing, trait trees) Examples include the math for crit bonuses for bosses (old BG), the fate debacle, a succession of incoherent mitigation changes, vitality contributions and others. Contributing factor also is the increasing stat bloat due to exponential-like development of item levels, apparent in vitality contribution of l95 gear and in the progression of the main stats for legendary items (ref). trait trees [treɪt triːs], compound noun, pl sweeping, poorly thought-out, badly implemented and half-finished changes (ref balance, challenge) to 7 year old class and game mechanics, leaving some in a broken state (aggro mechanics, minstrels, rk attunement, ...) with no final fix promised in the foreseeable future (ref) Official reasons for implementation being, amongst some others, less balancing issues and removal of skill bloat (refs) and popular player demand (ref facts and data) Concerns towards the likely effects of the introduction in early as well as later beta rounds were brushed aside by the CM (ref) and a group of other individuals representing (ref fact) some silent majority (ref), coining, in passing, the term vocal minority (ref) and stating You, Know, It's Beta And Nothing's Final, And Either Way, You Haven't Even Properly Tested And/Or Failed To Adapt To And Understand The Trees And Also, You Need To Embrace, Not Resist, Change And Once You Do, You'll See That They Aren't THAT Bad, After All (ref blunt, honest as well as open and respectful discussion). vocal minority [ˈvəʊ.kəl maɪˈnɒr.ɪ.ti], adjective + noun derogatory, dismissive term (ref welcoming place, open and respectful discussion) referring to a part of the gaming/forum community that expresses their concerns and highlights what they conceive as ongoing issues like lottery loot (ref loot mechanic), lack of end-game and challenge (refs), broken classes after stat changes (ref), class revamps and the introduction of trait trees, performance problems and lag (refs) and others When encountered in an answer (ref), likely to be accompanied by other dismissive terms like Constant Whining, Stop Playing If You Don't Like It, Why All The Negativity etc. pp. (ref welcoming place and open and respectful discussion) in attempts to derail, ridicule and brush away what the silent majority (ref) does not want to read about (interestingly, they could choose to just not read the threads in question, given they are so very bothered by them). WAI, acronym Working As Intended, Nothing To See Here, Move Along (ref non-issue) denotes player-reported problems or issues with parts of the game that Turbine deems irrelevant or has no intentions, or doesn't know how, to address (ref legendary item, loot mechanic and answer) welcoming place [ˈwel.kəm.ɪŋ pleɪs], adjective + noun Because nothing is quite as welcoming as a thinly veiled threat to follow some guidelines the CM (ref) himself interprets and enforces/ignores at will (visit the OF and note the big, screaming banner at the top, instructing you to comply, "or else"). words [wɜːds], noun, pl sequence of language units that carry neither meaning nor intent (ref answer) (quote) "I've always encourage people to read the words written and not to assign meaning or intent to them." -- edits fixed some minor errors, typos and formatting issues added more external links and more entries added (modified) contributions by Fredelas, fittybolger, sweet49 and Trilwych --- Phew! That took a lot longer to compile than I expected. Not sure the late game is worth so much dedication. SNy
  3. 12 points
    Modbreak: Dear GameDev, Please refrain from posting personal information on this board. Given your geolocation, it might be perceived as a rather vengeful thing. Say hi to the rest of Turbine, will you? .
  4. 12 points
    Howdy gang. Just thought I'd let you know something incredibly interesting - it IS possible to obtain refunds from Turbine, regardless of their "all sales are final" spiel. I just got my money back from them for the Isengard preorder. Long story. I was initially furious with Turbine for holding back on the announcement of the stat changes until after they'd allowed people to preorder, so I asked for my cash back, and they said no. I attempted to get my money back through Paypal, but seemed to have no luck, so I went back to Turbine. They said all sales are final, and besides, the Isengard product key was now permanently registered to my account and could not be removed. So I looked into it and got some interesting advice from Consumer Direct and emailed Turbine back with some juicy info. For a start, if proof of purchase can be produced (which it certainly can be, as receipts are generated via email), the Sale of Goods Act 1979 states that any imminent changes to the product or service must be declared, and if they are not a refund can be asked for and must be given, provided that refund is requested at any time up to 6 years after purchase. The only way out of it would be to make a like-for-like offer, although in the case of an online game that would entail providing me with my own exclusive version of the game sans stat changes. Totally unfeasible, so if I want a refund and am based in the UK I have them bang to rights - as they're offering the product/service to UK customers they have to abide by UK law. Gotcha number 1. That's not the only UK law they are in breach of. It seems that if there are imminent changes to a product or service that alter the product in a palpable way (like the stat changes), failure to declare them before you allow the transaction to take place - thus denying the customer the opportunity to make an informed decision - is in violation of the Misrepresentation Act 1967, which makes their conduct illegal in the UK. Their "game experience may change for any reason" nonsense in their EULA is irrelevant because they're breaking the law. Gotcha number 2. Also - and you are going to absolutely LOVE this - if you tell your customer one thing and then do the opposite regardless of your past statements to the contrary, you are also in violation of the Misrepresentation Act. Like, ooh, I dunno, say your cash shop will offer "convenience and not advantage" and then sell things that you freely admit are "advantages". Their back-pedalling over that "convenience and not advantage" statement is in violation of British law! Technically it's also fraud because you've misrepresented your product to get the customer to enter into a contract of service. Gotcha number 3. And that's not all! If Codemasters were not aware of Turbine's plans to go F2P while Codies were reassuring their customers that there were "no plans to go F2P", then Turbine are open for corporate legal action because they effectively caused Codemasters to involuntarily violate the same act. Turbine could face legal action from every single Codemasters' customer too, for forcing the company with which the customer had a contract of service to violate the law. Gotcha number 4. The sweetest part of it is that removing the statements that they made in the past on their forums is basically an admission of guilt, and effectively means that they were attempting to cover up illegal activity. What's hilarious is that if they still had Codemasters as their European partner, they could pretty much say whatever they liked and get away with it, as they were not handling the European service themselves. As soon as they started directly dealing with European customers, they had to start abiding by the relevant legislation. They walked straight into it and left themselves open to cop it in the neck for every violation of our more stringent consumer rights laws. Bwa ha ha ha. I pointed all of this out to Turbine, along with advising them that if they wish to offer their service directly to overseas territories they should have done a better job of familiarising themselves with the consumer rights legislation of those territories. Alternatively, if they are unable to do so, they should hand their overseas services to partners who can. I also pointed out that I would be writing a letter of complaint to their parent company Warner Brothers advising them of all of Turbine's transgressions under the leadership of the Paizes. I will also be informing Middle-earth Enterprises of their unlawful conduct and asking them to reappraise Turbine's status as a licensee. They have been known in the past to revoke licenses for less. Strangely, the very next day, my Paypal claim was reopened and my money was credited back to me. Funny, that. Weirdly, I still have my Isengard goodies and preorder registered to my account too. I will be watching that with interest, because if they suddenly vanish from my account, that means when they originally refused my refund under the grounds that the product key was permanently fixed and could not be removed, they were telling me enormous lies in order to wriggle out of giving me my money back. And that's a whole new can of worms... Turbine really should learn that they should not mess with European customers. We are clearly not the pushovers they are used to. If they have to learn the hard way, then that's fine by me. And I'm still going to write those letters to Warner Brothers and Middle-earth Enterprises.
  5. 11 points
    I agree with this on a personal level. First post here although I consider this forum superior to the official one (where most of my posts over the years were confined to grants on rank x threads). Just wanted to try to give some personal observations about the Moors from behind the curtain. I was LOTRO Systems QA from Book 14 SoA until shortly before F2P went live, returning for a few months after RoI launched (before departing a second time after experiencing the 'new' Turbine in Needham under WB rule...I'd seen enough). For most of that time I was the QA guy responsible for PvMP and in fact for about two years Jen Gordy (Jalessa) and I could be said to have constituted the PvMP 'team'. And neither of us, particularly Jen, could devote our sole attention to PvMP. Jen became Systems Lead and I had other Systems (combat, classes, IA, etc) that I had to look at. After the debacle (PvMP-wise) of Book 6 MoM and the post-MoM layoffs (with the attendant hiring freeze), it became pretty clear we were not going to be able to do anything ambitious in the Moors. Firstly, sheer lack of bandwidth: not enough bodies, not enough engineering time, and a lack of interest from the producers. Secondly, Book 6 suggested that trying to force in changes was at least as likely to hurt as help. The PvMP system, just by dint of how it was built (a whole story in itself), defied 'fixing'...however one wanted to define that and everyone who played including me had different ideas. We're talking about a system where one side are literally playable NPCs (remember how CJs could stun charging Reavers? Sadly unavoidable at the time: they had to conform to the same rules as NPCs in pve... disassociating Creeps from those tables and mechanics was a huge change when it did happen). Our consensus basically became: hold the course. Most of what we implemented was 'quality of life' stuff...things like trying to tamp down the CC (which was absurd in SoA, something often forgotten in nostalgia). Mostly it was an arms race: the class devs weren't required to consider the effects of their changes vis-à-vis PvMP (and might still be checking in changes at the 11th hour) so each update was kind of a gamble when it came to tweaking Creeps. Buff too much and it's a GV camp 24-7 (ala earlier this year), too little and it's Book 6 again. Even if we managed to get a timely picture of freep changes (rare), testing was problematic. As said, I was the only QA guy assigned to PvMP or who even had ranked toons on Live. If I was lucky I might get 10 or 12 people for testing for a few hours on a Friday afternoon. Beta was not very helpful as a rule either. I found that most of the people who showed up for events were at best casuals. But consider that even on Live it usually took a few weeks for us as players to really determine which way the pendulum had swung. I did the best I could under the circumstances and as a rule played whichever side came off worse as my private mea culpa if it went bad. I missed some doozies (the 1-shot killing BA firedot and the keep flip flag exploit were about the worst). PvMPers were passionate-I certainly was, I threatened to quit the first time (SoM) KBs were going to be granted to everyone in the group!-and that passion did give the PvMP community a much louder voice than its numbers would suggest. At its height, the Moors saw maybe 7% participation...as for those of us who were diehards, we're talking just a few percent of the LOTRO population. It was hard for me to accept the SQL metrics (I lived and breathed the place on and off the clock) but it was what it was. So it was hard to justify diverting scarce resources into a part of the game a very few players frequented and that seemed to the prods and others-based on the forums in the words of pvmpers themselves-to be a hopelessly 'broken' fiasco. So (and this post is too long already) my stance was: the zone is by no means perfect and never will be. But it's unique and home to a unique group of people. If we can't really do the Moors the justice the players deserve, then at least let's try to preserve what we have. That strategy held until after F2P and totally went out the window when Zombie Columbus and Jwbarry all people got assigned to the Moors for RoR. That update, completely asinine, brain-dead, killed what was left of the old magic. I limped along as a player to see the 7 year mark and then said farewell to LOTRO. I still miss it but focus on remembering the good times and good people I experienced thanks to Middle Earth.
  6. 10 points
    hater So Turbine knew about the lag all the time and yet CS always blamed players computers or ISP for it on the official forums. Were they ordered to cover up or did they do it on their own initiative? We absolutely knew about the lag and server performance issues. This is a case in point that underscores my above observations about honest and clear communication. What kind of message are you sending your customers when at one moment you tell players that Mylotro is being discontinued to improve overall game performance and then the next that their rigs and providers are to blame for lag? It's worth taking a moment to reiterate that Customer Service and OCR, the Community Relations team, while sharing overlapping spheres as front facing departments, are distinct entities. Neither were directly tied into the development process and both could at times be left out of the loop, with awkward consequences. CS in particular was often forgotten in the decision-making process and left to hold the bag. The call to hold off on fixing Hechgam, as I mentioned earlier, condemned our CS guys to deal with the player fallout. And when they were forced to discontinue manually advancing the instance for players (they just didn't have the staff to spend all night addressing every plea for aid) they caught hell for that too. Another great example is multi boxing in the Moors. The policy was basically, they pay for all those accounts, let them play. But for the sake of a tiny minority of boxers and their subs, CS had to deal with literally thousands of irate complaints, each one a ticket that took up their time and slowed down their ability to respond to other tickets just that much. Moreover neither the devs or the producers ever thought to give CS a head's up on upcoming instances and potential problems. So a CS guy might find themselves having to respond to issues they knew nothing about, unsure on what was by design, what was a bug, and if there was a work around. Now our CS team was a good outfit, with some excellent people, but often through no fault of their own was the focus of player dissatisfaction. I felt bad for them-and having been a Red Cross case worker on Katrina identified with being the guy left out there to soak up the frustration of the public-and in my humble capacity tried to help. I made a proposal to Ken Surdan, Turbine's VP of Ops pre-WB, a no-nonsense guy who would listen to anyone's ideas, that LOTRO dev host pre-launch and update presentations for CS to outline areas of concern, known bugs, that sort of thing. Ken liked the idea and sent out a company email calling for its implementation. And nothing came of it, such being the nature of companies. But the point is, more often then should have been the case, CS was forced to translate at times hazy or even contradictory policies and issues as best it could. OCR, under Meg 'Patience' Rodberg, who was a warm and justly popular person with our fans, acted as the human face of the company. Her role, and she was great for it, was to make the players feel like they were extended members of the Turbine family. But she too wasn't always kept in the loop and also had to interpret policies that may have been cloudy or (again) contradictory. Sapience...wasn't as well suited to that role. No sense in trying to deny that. I give him a lot of respect for his charitable endeavors (I myself ponied up 400 bucks for his first children's hospital drive, best money I've spent in ages) and in person he was a likeable guy. But during his tenure the whole tone of OCR's posture changed. No description is required here, the Sapience era is painfully well documented. OCR seemed to be the Spin Machine, enforced with the liberal application of the ban hammer. Not exactly guaranteed to improve 'community relations'. I was happy to hear Frelorn had succeeded him. He became an active LOTRO player sometime after MoM and-so importantly for anyone in his position-came to identify with the player base. And he was a fan of PvMPers, which Sapience certainly was not.
  7. 10 points
    I didn't like it, why gimp your ability to play your class the way you want to? That's all the revamp accomplished basically. I don't have an inside track on why they did the class revamp. But I can say that never once, either during my first stint or brief second tour, did I hear anyone talk about 'skill bloat', either as a player or dev concern. As Systems QA working daily with the devs responsible for such matters, I certainly would have. It's really a silly notion if one thinks about it. When have you ever heard an MMOer complain about having too many skills? Far more likely explanation: the basic tech is developed for mounted combat and then the devs, looking for some way to spruce up the game on the cheap, say, hey, we have the tech and WoW has spec trees...let's do that. Either way, and in my experience, the devs tended to pick and choose what suited them on the forums-not hard since everyone on there has a different opinion or gripe and to them it's absolutely the most important thing ever. Good example was PvMP stars. Shortly after I got to Turbine Jen removed them from the UI. Being a star hugger I charged over and asked for an explanation. Jen: 'Players complained about all the star hugging.' Me: 'Who?' Jen: 'On the forums...' So I went and checked the PvMP forums and found a single thread, at the top of the page, complaining about them (the OP incidentally was a champ...not a class known for being able to show off stars). I realized that she had gone to the forums fishing for some easy change she could make that could be said to be addressing 'player concerns'. And that wouldn't be the last time by a long shot that I, as an active and socially connected player, would be told by a dev who didn't play LOTRO themselves 'what players want'. So...yeah whenever I hear Turbine claiming it changed this or that based on 'feed back', I tend to roll my eyes.
  8. 10 points
    I don't remember Rick having much of a presence on the forums before F2P so how aware or concerned the devs were about him later on is unknown to me (when I came back after ROI it didn't come up, at least around me). So all I could do was speculate although I did hear some talk that he wasn't super popular with either CS or some of the devas (for what that's worth). But just speaking personally, I never thought he was the right guy for the job nor ever thought that forum policing should have been within OCR's jurisdiction. That should have always been a customer service concern. I don't think there was any strategy to what he did, he was just unprofessional, let his title go to his head, and had the wrong attitude. Frelorn it seems to me has proven a much better fit.
  9. 10 points
    Danchir, I'll try and hit on a few points as best I can (and some of this is subjective...for example it's hard to say why we lost subs at various points). Infinite Crisis Since IC was after my time, I'll relate a (slightly redacted) explanation I got from a friend at the company related to why a mutual friend-a 10 year Turbine vet-was laid off last fall. "So, infinite crisis was costing 4mil a month to make. And they dumped all their marketing budget into a 'twitch' campaign....which is a new sorta web thing where you can watch people play games.....and unless you are Korean and playing starcraft, no one gives two fucks about. It resulted in Infinite Crisis peak concurrency being....less than 1,000 people. Hell most people had no inkling the thing even came out. So, hemorrhaging money, total failure, we gotta make it look like we are doing something to fix the faucet of losses. So, they shifted ______ to a lead on infinite crisis....and laid him off. See, we're saving money!" There was no way IC could have succeeded. The necessary experience, expertise, and tech wasn't there. The MOBA market is dominated by DOTA. And when you task Monolith (the Batman guys) with making a LOTR MOBA and then have Turbine make the DC heroes one, you're just going to end up with two failures. But this is a good point to mention that WB didn't acquire Turbine for the sake of LOTRO. They wanted Turbine's technical expertise in supporting online games. LOTRO itself was just a fringe benefit. Thus WB crammed dozens of new staff into the Needham building while keeping LOTRO bare bones, disconnected Turbine's NetOps from Turbine (and christened it WB Net), and, when I came back, had LOTRO QA testing the Batman online shooter. But in a sense WB's disinterest in LOTRO and sheer wealth has probably spared LOTRO from being shut down. They don't care enough to kill it where a smaller company might have by now. Kate and F2P Kate got lots of attention for the DDO f2p transition. A cynic might suggest that the Paizs had flat lined DDO already and when Ascherons Call's concurrency numbers are beating DDO on a nightly basis, you can only go up from there. LOTRO was certainly ailing when they made the call to go f2p. We all assumed it would happen eventually but not so soon. In March or thereabouts in '10 an email went out from Crowley stating that LOTRO's US subs were down to around 85k (the only time specific sub numbers were ever mentioned even in-house while I was there) and could we maybe ask our friends to try the game? But nobody wanted the f2p thing. It basically said, yeah our game sucks so bad we won't even ask you to pay for it. We knew our community was the best thing we had going for us and knew we were going to substantially lose that when the f2p floodgates were thrown open. MoM I do have a lot of affection for MoM, it's an incredible space, nothing else like it. But the talent drain post SoA was taking its toll. Turbine refused to pay industry competitive wages and it isn't an easy sell to take a pay cut to move all the way to snowy and expensive Boston for a benefits package highlighted by free bagel Thursdays. So they just promoted people in-house up the ranks and there it's a case of who schmoozed the best and doesn't rock the boat. So you end up with the Watcher being built by a junior dev whose previous claims to fame were some content work in Evendim and naming the mobs in SoA. Then throw in that perennial Turbine bugbear-good concept, bad execution. Legendary Items sounded good as an idea...and ended up being a train wreck. A grindy nightmare that hosed loot tables, crafting, and the ability of SQL to process data as it was inundated with a bazillion item and relic decons. I had moments in testing them where even the devas didn't know what certain legacies were supposed to do. And radiance...you know it's a bad idea when even Turbine later admitted the system stank. Meanwhile the lack of team leadership meant that devs were basically doing whatever they pleased with thier classes and hence you see hunters blowing up instances (and creeps). We lost a lot of subs that winter. Maybe players didn't want to spend a year in a big cave or maybe the endless server downtimes got old. But either way there was never, ever any self-examination when it came to player dissatisfaction. It couldn't possibly be that the devs were putting out sloppy, uninspired work or substituting mindless grinds in place of meaningful, engaging gameplay. There was never a dev fired for poor work-sometimes it seemed like a cabal where if nobody admitted the quality of the game was down, nobody would get blamed for it. That may sound harsh but the game speaks for itself. When I look back on LOTRO as a player, having been away from the game for a while now, my own realization is that it was the community-our closeness, personalities, the sub-plots we created as we interacted (especially in the Moors) that kept me engaged and in love with the game. My nostalgia for SoA through SoM is really about that and maybe it makes the game itself look better than it might have actually been. Devs and Amarthiel Apparently some of the content devs were unprofessional in playing Amarthiel, trolling players verbally and whatnot. About what one might have expected from some of them.
  10. 10 points
    It's the day we've all been waiting for, Friday of Countdown Week! The very last day of the countdown to the departure of Rick "Sapience" Heaton, leaving his post as LOTRO Community Manager after 6 long years. Today's Countdown features a character that no matter how long you play it, never gets to advance beyond level One, the Session Play Chicken! Yes, level One is the only level this character will ever see, and they never get a chance to experience the hard choices that other characters do, namely "what do I choose as my specialization in the fabulous Trait Tree system that everyone is raving(*) about?" Instead, chickens are granted only a small, but useful, set of skills(**): Fowl Fleetness: Delete or close threads with +50% speed Bob and Weave: Respond to community questions with vague answers. +50% Evade Chance when asked for clarification +25% additional evasion against posts that provide evidence that your previous answers are dubious at best. Possum Impersonation: Spammers running rampant in threads throughout a long holiday weekend? Power outage that takes down the servers? You cannot be arsed to act (playing dead). Duration as long as needed till the crisis is over. Paranoia: "You're not sure what, but something isn't right". Ban them! Ban them ALL!!!! Sapience, in honor of this milestone in a long and storied career (***), we here at Countdown Week have chosen this lovely parting gift as a remembrance of your service to the community: Congratulations. You earned it. Because you've proven time and again that when it comes to quality community management, you just don't give a cluck. Buh-bye! (*) Chickens can only communicate on the /chicken channel, and no one else but chickens can join this chat. So if you're wondering who all the people are who are raving about the Trait Tree, it's probably the Silent Majority of chickens. They're out there, you just can't hear them. And if you can't hear them, that means they're all happy! (**) Descriptions modified to suit the occasion (***) Want stories? This forum is FULL of stories about Sapience! Check it out!
  11. 10 points
    Some members on the Player Council can, yes. Take the Skill/Trait trees in Helm's Derp beta for example. Many of the ones trumpeting everything about them were on the Player Council and were brow-beating those who were offering suggestions to make things better or get rid of them entirely. At that time it felt more like they were "blocking" for and defending devs while the devs were just tossing things at a wall to see if they stuck. Sapience was allowing their nonsense while silencing others. It really was a clusterfuck and still makes me mad to this day.
  12. 10 points
    I'm not sure you understand how this works. The old FAQ never existed. When Sapience says that the instances are part of the expansion, we should accept his statements as the infallible word of Mod. If we get something other than what we're expecting, it's because Mod works in mysterious ways, it is not up to us mere mortals to interpret the word of Mod. Of course there will be heretics who bring along their "proof" that Mod was wrong, such as Google cache pages or unpurged forum posts, but these are just fabricated pieces of evidence put there by the naysayers to test our faith in Mod. I know it's hard, but we need to stay strong in these trying times. With naysayers lurking in every thread trying to test our faith with things like "facts", and with false Mods trying to draw us into heretical games such as GW2, we need to stick with the One True Mod now more than ever.
  13. 9 points
    Fascinating. I thought it was rather clear people disagreed with his disrespect of others. You perhaps need to consider something from an outsider's perspective: not many of us will give a hoot whether or not he can troll on the PC forums or if anybody did in the past year because we were never there. People being allowed access to the PC, being given privileged information, and then allowed to go after others on the beta or official forums is the issue. I see TheCrossbows inclusion on the Council as a tacit acknowledgment by Sapience that Crossbow's brand of incendiary posting is accepted by him and Turbine's Customer Service.
  14. 8 points
    1 2 3 I had wanted to compile a history of changes vis the Moors over the years but found that a lot of the update lists were lost with the old forums; it would have been interesting to have a detailed record of all the changes in general, large and small.
  15. 8 points
  16. 8 points
    I don't believe he is under any legal or moral obligation to answer every message he may get ..
  17. 8 points
    That old used programmer can totally do this.
  18. 8 points
    "GameDev" is the free player version of the name. To get the more creative name, you need to get out your credit card.
  19. 8 points
    I guess there was a lot of dysfunction-and again, a lot of it was stuff you might see at any given game company (my brother was QA manager at Infinity Ward for Modern Warfare 2: the fall of the West-Zampella IW makes Turbine's issues pale in comparison)-but on the other hand the very fact that this little company, that in 1998 or so operated out of a garage basically, managed to build and maintain three well-known MMOs is an incredible accomplishment. Really it should have been impossible. And arguably had Turbine been a more conservative and less ambitious company, LOTRO never would have been made in the first place. As someone who loved LOTRO it did drive me nuts that we didn't always have the best people in the right positions. We had too many management and lead positions occupied by people far more concerned about staying in a comfortable bubble of job security than pushing any envelopes. And that atmosphere tended to foster aquiesence; it was a miasma of mediocrity that pulled people in, regardless of department. Criticism was either ignored or pushed back; the art director's policy on art figure bugs was simple: closed, there were no art bugs. But... I would go back to Turbine at Westwood in a heartbeat. There was a magic there, so many good souls within those walls. LOTRO wasn't the game it could have been-and maybe never could have been-but it still gave me the best gaming experiences I've ever had. In talking about the story of LOTRO, I hope it doesn't seem like I'm simply railing against Turbine. It really is, in its totality, a more complex tale, warts and all, then just 'so and so dropped the ball' and x mistakes made. Bittersweet, for sure.
  20. 8 points
  21. 8 points
    I generally just pop by here to see what's going on (aka, lurking with nothing to add), but I wouldn't feel too bad about complaining, or having lingering negativity toward Turbine. I found this site because I couldn't believe I was the only one questioning the tone of the official forums. I have a lifetime subscription - I don't remember when I first started playing LOTRO - before Moria, anyway. I have 5 classes maxed. (well, I did - I'd quit before the Dol Amroth part.) I didn't visit the official forums often - generally, I'd go if I had a question, then get sucked in to the weirdness occasionally. Within a few posts, I'd learned there were Heydts in the world, & you could count on them to correct you, no matter what you said. (It was about the time they ran a long debate about Nona's possible pregnancy that I gave up & vowed to avoid the place forever after. Probably because I suspected they're right, & the future of Middle Earth, as envisioned by Turbine, includes the Hellspawn of Horn & Nona.) I thought maybe I was the only one who noticed that Sapience was stunningly snarky & rude, so this site is great, just so I feel sane again. I tried the newest update - I got to the part where I'm told to carry nails, & decided that's it. I'm sure there's some good stuff left (...sure, as in 'maybe.') But I'd lost all the old enthusiasm. (that, & I'm on Elendilmir, my old kin is long gone, & I'm the only one in my family to still visit on occasion.) I forgot the Dwarf Heads in Dol Amroth. I saw some developer insist they're Numenoreans. Well, how stupid do they think we are? They're Moria Dwarves with slight nose jobs! The last thing they did well, imo, was world building, design. Dol Amroth just seemed lazy to me. (After the 'Nail Quest,' I rode down to see it - then logged off for the last time.) A lot got to me, by the end. I've always loathed the store, but I understand why games need that income. I don't really object to the concept of micro-transactions, but having to buy stuff like legacy tier ups, that felt wrong. (You can find them in world drops! In all those characters, I never did - but... they're there! For sure!) Turbine's methods drive me crazy - start something, then drop it. From raids & pvp, to housing, skirmishes, and mounted combat. (I could have loved that - then I tried it on my guardian...) Now it's Epic Battles - I see no good in them at all. They feel lazy, and as un-epic as it gets. (oh, & the trait revamp - for me, that ruined a lot, especially my champion - one of the 3 I played most.) And the weird semantics - raiding now includes 3 mans? I didn't raid, but we instanced a lot. Without that, I'm not sure what's left. We tried the Epic Battles, and at that point, the 2 remaining friends I played with, finally quit, in disgust & fury. And I really hated the way Turbine removed posts, *even their own,* and pretended they'd never said something. They did this so often, it became ridiculous. I wondered if others noticed - it's nice to find out they did. By the end, I'd come to despise the epic story, too. They took one of the best parts of the book, for me, and made it just - awful. (Eomer looks like Zap Rowsdower, if anyone knows MST3K - that pains me, & Eowyn has become a whiny teen. I came to loathe the 'noble savage' Dunlendings, while the Rohirrim startled at whistles & feared salamanders. See, I'm getting testy even as I remember it.) One of the final 'UGH!' moments for me was that 'special class moment' which I waited for with great hope. In this case, it was the Captain at Helm's Deep. I don't know if anyone here has done it, but - wow. I went into fits of laughter. (Aragorn has gone Monty Python - that's all I can say in case horrible spoilers matter at this point.) They took something potentially amazing & made it - well, good comedy, anyway! I'm pretty sure that wasn't their intention - I think they just don't care at all, & have totally lost the spirit that makes Tolkien great. But a laugh is never wasted, I guess. So - yes, there is negative stuff on this forum. But personally, I needed that, without the threat of being Heydted. (whoever came up with 'Heydt-jacked' on this forum somewhere, thank you!) I haven't logged in for weeks - I probably won't play again. I can find the too-often pathetic cheerleading on the official forums, should I ever go back. (less & less likely) But it's oddly helpful to see that I'm not alone in disappointment, & yes, anger at Turbine for what it did to Middle Earth. I hate giving up this game - but I don't think there's one thing I said here that *wouldn't* get me banned on the official forum. I've never been 'warned' or anything, but only because I knew full well that I'd be deleted. (I didn't think about being banned - I thought that was for *real* offenses, like suggesting a pregnant Nona is a good idea...) And I still check out what they're doing, because it meant a lot to me once. It's nice to visit a place where a few others seem to have gone through the same thing.
  22. 8 points
    A lot of unsavory and dishonest scumbags are "likeable in person". That's how they get people to trust them, and get into positions of authority. Frodo: "I think [one of the enemy's servants] would - well, seem fairer and feel fouler, if you understand." A lying, hypocritical bully with a smile on his face is still a lying, hypocritical bully.
  23. 7 points
    I'm somewhat surprised LOTRO RU is still up (I think they had 2 servers but my memory is a bit hazy on that) but really couldn't guess what its future holds. RU was kind of an enigma in a way, very distant but actually perhaps our most agreeable partner. The only brew up I remember with Russia was their turning on the open world PvMP feature we'd put in for China. Turbine-being utterly neurotic on the subject of Creeps outside the Moors (I'm not stretching it either: people worry less about ISIS and Ebola than Turbine did about creep escapees)-screamed and yelled and demanded they stop doing it. So the no fun zone extended all the way to the Urals. But apart from some technical issues with updates, there wasn't much to say. They'd file the occasional bug but that was about it. I do remember one funny moment where a friend came out of a phone conference with their people and said, 'I think I heard a f---ing tank driving by on their end'. Apparently they sounded like they were calling from downtown Grozny. But compared to even to Codemasters they were as far as I was aware easy to work with. Not so LOTRO China. CDC was ridiculous. But rather then spend an hour describing all their antics I'll just relate one incident where we sent a few guys over (to Shanghai I think) to negotiate a deal. Apparently the Chinese didn't like our terms because eventually we got a call from our guys where they basically said, 'we're kind of trapped in their building and they won't let us leave until we agree to their conditions'. Turbine really was out of its depth trying to do business in that place. Codemasters might have been arrogant and meddlesome at times but at least they weren't completely corrupt bullies.
  24. 7 points
  25. 7 points
    Moreover, if you don't want to post the question publicly to this forum knowing it's a sensitive topic, that's even more reason for him not to answer. Kind of "duh."
  26. 7 points
    Cantu Hi Aylwen. I've registered specifically to say a massive thank you for all your postings on this thread. This kind of honest retrospective is something we need a whole lot more of the in the gaming. A hobby that I really stopped paying any attention to with the death (in my eyes) of Lotro around the time of the F2P transition. I would say the thanks are all owed to you. LOTRO's community was absolutely unique, nothing else like it. I can't say that enough. I am truly proud that I, like my brother before me, had an opportunity to contribute to a game that brought so many wonderful people together, from so many places and diverse backgrounds. Every one had a voice worth hearing and I believe every one of them deserves to hear at least one perspective on why the game was the way it was. I don't know anyone who doesn't appreciate honesty. And I am convinced that if we had been more candid about our limitations, our mistakes and missteps, what we could do and couldn't do, the vast majority of our fans would have responded with more loyalty, not less. The very fact that one old Turbine hand's reminincences is considered noteworthy underlines how starved the gaming nation is for honesty and candor. The greater the wedge companies drive between themselves and thier customers the greater the animosity: nobody likes to be treated like a child or have their intelligence insulted. 'We have your money, now stfu and like it or go away' is not a platform likely to engender a contented body of consumers. Honest, open communication is the way.
  27. 7 points
    Unfortunately this is correct. I think they started working on it around the time MoM went alpha compliant but it's a bit hazy to me at this point. Might have been a bit later. On a whim I volunteered to help out with testing one afternoon sometime in the spring/early summer of '09. At that point it consisted of a Trollshaws area (same art and look) and a playable Ranger-type character. It was kind of cool to play a LOTRO toon on a 360 controller and the combat was pretty decent, snappy. But, incredibly, at one point they decided there weren't going to be any hobbits or dwarves... But they finally realized a direct port was beyond our means. So it kind of morphed into a PvP death match game with Orcs and Uruks. To their credit the first thing WB did was yank the plug on that albatross, but not before it had wasted millions of dollars and drained off a good chunk of lotro devs, producers, and engineering time. As an aside, Kotaku at one point ran a 'scoop' that we were making a Harry Potter console MMO. Actually, Harry Potter was a pitch we made to WB in the spring of 09 they didn't bite on. Long before they actually bought us WB and Turbine had been in various discussions and part of the big injection of investor capital we got through the Highland Group was WB money.
  28. 7 points
    Looking at my wall of text I see I didn't really answer your questions. Liked: I worked almost entirely with the Systems team as QA rep and enjoyed it a lot (I didn't do much bug entry or typical qa monkey work, rather coordinating in meetings, working up test plans, providing input). LOTRO dev is divided into Content (quests, epic, festivals, instances) and Systems (combat, IA, crafting, PvMP, classes), with some overlap. I felt sttongly that the Systems devs-Jen, Elliot Gillman, Chris Knowles, Ken Burd, for example-were the real professionals among the devs. They were smart, mature, steady. Elliot loved LOTRO-his play time rivalled mine and that was saying something for a dev (many didn't play LOTRO at all, much less log /played in the months). Chris was a dream dev: great ideas, eager for input from people who loved the game-his crafting revamps were a huge plus in my mind. The Content devs on the other hand...I'll just say it: apart from Maki, Dan Oulette, and a few others, were a bunch of bums. If you were a LOTRO player, you'd have felt the same. Some weren't fit to log player bugs, much less design. Dislike: The f2p scrum was four or five months that, along with the WB buy, broke me there. Apart from perhaps Kate, nobody was happy about the move to f2p. Nobody was very thrilled with Kate coming over to LOTRO either although it must be said that at least she was more of a presence than Steefel had been (in two years, I spoke more to the CEO and other execs than the LOTRO execprod...he'd sit in the back during product reviews, nod, smile, say good job, then disappear again). For the first year, through most of MoM, there was decent department relations, it was pretty informal, respectful, generally productive. As things got tougher, and people started to fear for the future (people started jumping ship to 38 Studios by SoM, leading to us getting into a spat with Schilling's crew over their headhunting), that atmosphere soured. Just one example: one of the main reasons we didn't do Live events ala Amarthiel (apart from some of the Content devs acting like asshats during that event) was because every department thought they should be in charge (CS, OCR, Dev). And QA wasn't willing to brisk getting blamed (as we certainly would be) if something went wrong with the event so our Director refused to provide resources. So a lot of egos and CYOA started becoming the order of the day and last I saw, that hasn't changed.
  29. 7 points
    The NDA I signed related to trade sec. ts, practices damaging to business, etc. As an active employee at an MMO company it's generally frowned upon to 'out' yourself as an employee in game, the big worry being that you'll blab about upcoming changes, tech, etc. But I neither work for Turbine anymore nor know any 'trade secrets' at this point. And many of the remaining comrades I had at Turbine were culled in the last round of layoffs (thanks to Infinite Crisis...) The atmosphere when I first got there in the summer of 08 was great. Turbine, even back then, was very old school, relaxed and friendly. The building was a dream if you were an old time game geek-dark and cozy, open 24-7 if you just wanted to come in on the weekends to play games or say hi to people, a couch to crash on if need be. I have a few pictures of the place (it was very dimly lit so I didn't take very many)... Outside on a later winter weekend, probably 09. QA-CS area, looking from my desk. DDO QA was a few rows down, where QA Lead Jeff Siadek (producer now, great guy) is standing. CS was towards the far wall. Looking into the Dev Pit from the kitchen area. Jen's desk would have been on the left on the end of the aisle. Old Turbine was absolutely informal, if you wanted to go bug Alan Maki or whoever about something, you just walked over. But yeah I was in seventh heaven when I first got there. I loved LOTRO, the people were generally wonderful even CEO Jim was a pretty likable guy...there were only a few people there I ended up really disliking, and none of them were in QA or CS or OCR, even if I didn't care much for Rick as the head of OCR and I'd say Cataldo was an improvement over him for sure in that capacity. That's on the personal level; as a lover of LOTRO there were a lot of people who I didn't think brought much to the table even if they were perfectly decent folks. Zombie Columbus was one of them. But I don't really want to single out individuals to bash: the problems were really more systemic and to distill a very complex subject boiled down to a problem of leadership and direction. It's hard to be specific since it's a story that really covers years, going all the way back to the Anderson days (when my brother worked there-he came on just as MEO was being scrapped). But as for WB...that was a deal with the devil that in retrospect had to be made. Same went for F2P. I ended up being the QA rep on the transition scrum, attending the daily standups with Kate and the various leads assigned to that project, a role that was on the one hand an honor I suppose given its importance but also a bitter pill for me as a LOTRO player. We were hurting bad after SoM-subs were declining hard-and F2P was inevitable. But I knew it was never going to be the same. But if you ask me things took a wrong turn with MoM if not sooner. Turbine's biggest asset was its crazy bold ambition: we had less than 200 people in reconverted warehouse space behind a car dealership putting out 3 MMOs when ZOS, where I worked for a year, could barely put out one with far more money and resources. But it was also its biggest downfall. We tried to do too much with too little, attempting the LOTRO console game, building a proprietary downloader (Propel), mock ups of a Harry Potter MMO to woo WB...all of which soaked up bodies and millions and came to nothing. To me IC was classic Turbine, even in the WB era.
  30. 7 points
    Wow...three Executive Producers in one year...must be a new record. "We're working on a new PvMP zone for Mines of Moria!" - Jeffrey Steefel "We're working on a new PvMP zone for Riders of Rohan!" - Kate Paiz "The team is also seriously investigating a new PvMP map in Osgiliath." - Athena “Vyvyanne” Peters
  31. 7 points
    WoW's players were too busy running new dungeons, new raids, and PvPing to notice a poll on an obscure site...
  32. 7 points
    Ugh, this is getting stupid. 1. I think some of you are choosing to assume the worst about all of Bucko's posts because some of them come off the wrong way. I didn't see any difference in his c-word post from others on that topic. But it's been decided that you aren't going to like anything he says, and we all know that, so do we really need to derail every single thread with this silly bickering? 2. Some of you are clear that you're going to use words that make some of us uncomfortable no matter what anyone says, fine. We asked nicely, you don't wish to respect the request, that's your right. We're just a bunch of random strangers posting on an internet forum and nobody owes anybody anything. I don't at all get the extreme arguments that we're somehow classist or anti whatever country or pro book-burning because of a request to lay off of one specific word. This has nothing at all to do with profanity in general, and it isn't even about words being 'sexist'. The only thing I'd add to Loth's earlier eloquent explanation (for anyone who cares) is this: when women are the victims of physical or sexual violence, the perpetrators use words like 'bitch,' 'cunt,' 'whore,' etc. to dehumanize the target of their aggression and deflect blame for the attack away from themselves and onto the victim, implying that if only she weren't such a *whatever*, he wouldn't need to be bashing her head in. For people who have survived such violence or who know others who have, words like that can be uncomfortable triggers, or even painful ones. Does that mean that men need to censor themselves and walk on eggshells every time a female might be listening in (since I know that's the next question that will be asked)? Of course not. It's my responsibility to tell you what makes me uncomfortable, not for you to guess. But in my universe, it's considered common courtesy that most people are willing to extend to one another when someone makes a polite request to please consider that x makes me uncomfortable. I don't say 'fuck' around my parents, for example, because it makes them crazy. Not because it's a rule or a demand, or even because I agree with their perspective on that word, but because I respect them and don't want to make things uncomfortable for them. I don't consider it odd or unreasonable to be mindful of others in that way. But whatever. It's your forum.
  33. 7 points
    Regarding our reputation, my only real concern is that I'd prefer that we not get too nasty towards newcomers and people who still enjoy LOTRO, because we should want fresh faces and new perspectives even when they could use a little smoothing of rough edges. Beyond that, do I care that some OF lurker here might see a thread derail (the horror!) or some political comment that isn't any different from the goofy comments you see on US news sites? Not one bit. Our reputation is enhanced by our tolerance of a diversity of opinions and ability to handle differences through intelligent conversation. Do we really want people here who would use one or two comments, without taking the responsibility of engaging in further inquiry or dialogue, as a reason not to use this site? I like it when threads wander the same way that face-to-face conversations do, and I don't want to see threads moderated solely for that reason. I would prefer moderation being limited to more serious violations like personal attacks, extreme vulgarity, spam, etc. If someone posts provocative political statements (which people do all the time on every internet forum), either roll your eyes and ignore it or provide an intelligent response and move on. I thought we were supposed to have thick skins here.
  34. 7 points
    Hello all, First off I wont be posting here much, not because I dont like the site, in fact I love it, but I am now in full lotro purging mode, going cold turkey. Just popped in to say sorry if anything I have posted over on the OF has caused anyone any problems here, keep up the good fight, its good to see people still saying the things that need to be said about the game, shame its ignored where it is needed most. I wont be expending anything further on that game now (damn thats hard to believe but thats the goal now) turbine/WB dont deserve the rights to that IP they have took the profs work and legacy and happily pissed all over it. Sickens me to see some so called Tolkien fans fawn over people who are sullying the very work they claim to adore. Anyway rant off, best wishes to you all.
  35. 7 points
    Challenge accepted. Disclaimer: fictional content for satire only. Meant in good fun and not to disparage. Forum names slightly obscured to protect from google. <posted by: M.Eva-something> THANKYOU Turbine for listening to your playerbase!!1 We said we wanted to move into Gondor and you listened. This is the biggest free update we have yet received, what's with all the whining in other threads. Clearly some here are feeling so entitled and special that they demand fun to be spoon-fed to them by the devs - how lazy can you get when you log into a game expecting it to entertain you. Don't you realize you have to put your own effort into it and work to create your own fun, yes it takes real effort and real work just like in real life and nothing is ever free. Except this update, which is completely free. You are being given an update which is completely free and yet you complain!1! Lotro once had a great community, now it has a self-centered spoiled population that can't appreciate all the hard work the devs are giving you! Free! <posted by: mrs H> Hmm, those stone heads aren't bad. You have to remember that in Middle-Earth equivalent of the Middle Ages, Gondor roughly corresponds to the area occupied by modern day France, and it was not unheard of to see ruins of Roman monuments scattered around the medieval landscape. Good job, world builders. Those swan wings on the towers are a lot like the Roman regalia of the imperial eagle (Aquila), any complaints about this shows you simply don't know your history. Lots of accurate attention to detail here, I've always taken my characters through Annuminas once the mobs turn gray and now I can do it again and again with Dol Amroth. Wait, who said there is group questing there? Are you forcing me to group with random strangers who will disrupt my quest flow and break my immersion? I really don't like this area, change it. <posted by: N.hobbit> I love it and everything about it, it looks so middle earth and the ships are so blue and - omg really? I get my own pet swan that swims on water and I can swim while it swims! How awesome is that! <posted by: fuckingmuck> The developers have done an excellent job considering how rushed and swamped their schedule is. The city looks and feels realistic, much better than the empty bland Annuminas. Those heads and wings really spice things up, I love it. All of you who complain have to remember that this is only beta. Everything is subject to change and we are here to give feedback, not criticism. Developers have worked hard on this and deserve much better than those harsh comments. Let's show them how much we appreciate their efforts by wording our posts more positively. <posted by: A.C.> Due to overwhelmingly positive player feedback, we are pushing the release of U14 back a few weeks so everyone can have more time to enjoy the free preview of our free update on Bullroarer. <Sapience locks thread as there are no other threads left to moderate>
  36. 7 points
    Heh, so he picked people "able to be civil" where "civil" means "agrees entirely with Turbine" and naysayers are plain uncivilized?
  37. 7 points
    There's some great people at Turbine and they built something special (imho) and I'm sorry to hear it's apparently not going well. But: Some of them are now going to feel what my team went through when they played hardball with the European service contract and the F2P handover, I don't recall anyone in Turbine giving my guys and girls any sympathy or understanding when they lost their jobs. Not. One. Single, Word... Business is war apparently, well guess what? You're fighting with yesterday's weapons and that traditionally doesn't go well... (edited for grammar)
  38. 7 points
    The move of services, which has just begun, is a huge caesura for all the European community. Some liked Codemasters service, some didn't. But we've known it for the last four years and knew what to expect. Now there's a new age of Turbine awaiting us. I've never played in the US, never used the forums. I did hear a lot of things in recent days, some which made me quite uneasy. But of course, the unknown, and change to what one was accustomed to, is always scary. But by now, until I get to experience things firsthand, I'm rather tired of all the doom (founded or not?) I've read in the latest few dozen threads on CM forums and here. So (for a change) here it is: Welcome Turbine! I am curious for what's awaiting me, my kin and friends. And sincerely hope that you will have an open ear for the European addition to your community. Showing respect to our customs, enough to consider the things we may bring up. A lot (at least for me) will depend on if you listen to us and work with us, or if you'll just send out prefabricated, while honeyed, responses of "this is how it was and is, deal with it and don't bother us about it". I still feel a huge sadness having to wave good bye to Codemasters. I spent a lot of time on their forums, greatly enjoyed to be part and tried supporting the community. But I do keep an open mind and am positive for what's to come. And I hope others will try as well, without "taken over by the yanks" or other stereotypes getting in the way. Nothing will be won by either "side" with digging trenches. Please, Turbine, do the same. It, will take work from all sides, and may well make the difference of winning a community, improving the whole of LotrO, or just taking one over. A lot of great input, community spirit and dedication would be lost if you plan to just do the latter.
  39. 6 points
    At least you assumed the position for your meet and greet with sapience.
  40. 6 points
    Our new data shows that our players not only want solo only content but overwhelmingly approve of us removing group content.
  41. 6 points
    Well as a LOTROer myself HD was the definite breaking point for a variety of reasons. The Class Revamp-for all the reasons already given. It nuked what little individuality LOTRO had left for no gain in gameplay and simply alienated older players who were perfectly content with the system they had been using for over half a decade. And if anyone at Turbine believed skill trees would bring in new players...you know that saying about people being promoted to their level of incompetence? End Game-Knowing nothing about BBs I jumped into my first thinking it would be a crazy survival mode, trying to rack up as many kills as possible against increasing odds. A no brainer. Can't screw that up. What I found made me throw up a little in my mouth. Seriously? This is what they came up with? The design well had run completely dry and the result was rehashed and tedious sludge passed off as 'end game'. Developers should be taken out back and beaten with chair legs for turning in work like that. Why even bother hitting cap if that's all that awaits? The Setting-Enough with Rohan already. It had gotten worse then Moria by then. I was sick of the Roharrim and grassy fields and damn sure sick of mounted combat. RoR was more than enough for me. So for me it was a case of choosing my poison (Jinjjah's fumbling and bumbling in the Moors included), any of which could make a long time player cast in the towel with prejudice.
  42. 6 points
    Whatever else may be said about Blizzard, their 'don't ship it until it's ready' philosophy has always been a cornerstone of their success in my opinion. In the MMO business everybody was constantly trying to complete with WoW, copying their ideas, their look, even their fonts...but nobody seemed to step back and analyze how Blizzard was in a position to pull off WoW in the first place. It was like, 'here's some money guys, make us one of those wow things all the kids are playing-I want my yacht!'. And there is a big disconnect between the executive branches of many of these companies and the development arms. Certainly the rank and file are often blissfully unaware of fires in the kitchen up until the pink slips hit their desks. And sometimes there are good reasons for deadlines-they aren't just arbitrarily imposed by producers to make life hard for the widget makers. In fact one of the dirty secrets of the industry is worker productivity, or rather the lack thereof. One hears about 'crunch time' constantly: the stories of poor developers being worked mercilessly around the clock, slave-driven away from their families by their heartless corporate overlords. The truth is somewhat cloudier. Crunch is not an inevitable fact of game development. Ask a producer what it's like trying to get full productivity out of game developers and if they are feeling honest the term 'herding kittens' might approximate their response. At one company-not Turbine-we had an artist spend two weeks trying to get a bear death animation just right...ya can't make this stuff up! In fact Turbine's crunch times were relatively mild: a benefit of being in the MMO business for years is having experienced producers who can look at the resources on hand and accordingly set milestones and triage features realistically. In the case of Moria the product was rough at ship not because of poor productivity but rather inexperience in some quarters and a ship date that just asked too much out of the team. The following layoffs were explained to us as being a consequence of Moria's poor sales. I didn't really buy that and I suspect that the staff reductions had been perculating for some time, perhaps to pretty up the account books as we geared up to shop ourselves around. But such is just speculation.
  43. 6 points
    Jesus, someone's sarcasm detector is broken. And gotta say, regarding your regular name calling, I don't think you've a leg to stand on whilst commenting on any behaviour/things said that you find unsavoury.
  44. 6 points
    Since Tolkien uses a lot of religious elements and symbols in his books, is it possible fanbois are reacting to his works as a belief-system, however subconsciously? This might explain the severe 'devoutness' of some of these fanbois in the game. As a formerly religious person, I keep noticing a familiar pattern in the censored forums among LOTRO fanbois versus those who 'dare to question'. Many of the die-hard fans have an extremely emotional response to even the implication that their game is less than perfect. Some seem zealots to the point of absolute blindness when it comes to critically weighing the pros and cons of the game. It's rather common for them to demonize skeptics of the game in very negative terms. Some of their comments remind me so much of how my in-laws responded when my husband and I left our church, it's a little disconcerting. As a matter of fact, one could substitute the words "religion and god" for "game and Turbine" in most of their posts. Of course, perhaps all fanbois are this blindly loyal and I'm totally wrong.
  45. 6 points
    That's the beauty of this forum: the moderators aren't trying to 'make' us focus on anything. People are free to express themselves. Yes, many of us have negative feelings about the game, some of us are still enjoying it greatly, and we all share our honest unfiltered opinions without fear of anyone deleting our posts, twisting our words, or shouting us down. People who feel positively are just as welcome as those who do not, but everyone needs to be prepared for true diversity of opinion, not the fake fluffy stuff you see over on the OF.
  46. 6 points
    It's not that Sapience was incorrect that bothered me. Everybody makes mistakes. He had been probably been playing on Bullroarer and reading Helm's Deep patch notes for a couple months, and it's easy to forget what already went into the game and when. Fair enough. I'm often wrong myself. There were 14 errors players helped me find and fix in my Hytbold guide, for example. (It was so complicated, I actually still have all the diffs here on my computer.) Multiply that by the 1.2 million views it got, and I could have led a lot of players astray. It's the way he said it. Say those words out loud, and you'll see that it's impossible to say them in anything other than a smug, condescending tone. It's that I-know-something-you-don't-know attitude that got me. And to top it off, Sapience is always fond of saying, "It's often not what you say, but how you say it that matters." This all came after several months of Sapience taunting, scolding, and even threatening some beta testers. There were some beta testers who I feel crossed the line, but he seemed to express thinly veiled superiority, rather than sympathy, in shutting down everyone's opinions, even when testers were being sincerely constructive. I think Turbine was just too rushed to deliver Helm's Deep on time after RoR's six-week delay. These discussions were probably becoming a distraction to developers whose bosses were pushing them onward with no time to consider and adjust to feedback from testers. This situation was understandable, but it was handled by the community team in a way that only made things worse. It's like Sapience was poking at a bunch of caged animals with a stick, while tossing some meat to a few of them, all from the relative safety of being outside the bars. It really divided the community against itself and made beta testing Helm's Deep an unpleasant and unproductive process. I guess my hobbit-rage finally boiled over. I'm pretty sure that's the post that got me permanently banned. I don't hold a grudge, though. As far as parting words go, I'm not ashamed of mine.
  47. 6 points
    I couldn't stand it any longer: https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?550043-SHIELD-Dwarf-Runs-through-Moria-Q-amp-A-Notes-on-What-Was-Said&p=7190278#post7190278 Originally Posted by frickinmuck Just wanted to remind everyone of the community guidelines, and of the real purpose of this thread. Perhaps this is an issue best tabled for now, or moved elsewhere. "Don't you find it difficult to breathe, what with your head so far up Turbine's ####?"
  48. 6 points
    "100% of the population takes part in leveling content, so that must be the only thing players enjoy. So that's all we'll give to them! They'll be so happy and grateful they don't have to deal with nasty stresses like the raids and those icky 3 man instances." Turbine logic.
  49. 6 points
    “A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.” The Official Page Suilad! Hello! Bonjour and Guten Tag! Gûr Edhellen, hereby known as 'this guide', was written with the intent to help those interested in roleplaying, and learning about, an Elf of Tolkien’s literature. The mysterious beings, that inhabited the majority of his wonderful world. For many long years, the good Professor brewed his world in a cauldron of thought. Finally, he perfected the world of Middle-earth and all within – but sadly, much was left unfinished; for his mortal coil unwound. But we can best remember him through his works, and thank him for countless hours of entertainment and fantasy. It is in honour of his works, that I create this. While this Guide does not claim to be an official product or affiliate of J.R.R. Tolkien, Codemasters or Turbine Inc. it is a simple Player-made contribution to the RP Community. To all those of [EN-RP] Laurelin, [FR-RP] Estel and [DE-RP] Belegaer, I offer you my works and research to learn more about this fine race. Even to you who do not live on a Roleplay server, this guide can be of use to you in many ways! Please note that until this site updates to a more efficient HTML/WYSIWYG editor, I shall not be posting the direct text - as it is quite heavily dependant on HTML Coding - and copying RTF never works for me. Please refer to the above link! A Personal Note This guide is also in honour of four wonderful years, as part of the LotRO (especially, the Laurelin) community. Much of your own comments and ideas are present in it, and I daresay it would still be a simple post on a forum - rather than the guide it is, today. With kindest regards, Andarne
  50. 6 points
    Thorebane - I don't know whether michael is also you, as Ferro implies, or an ally, or what. However, Ferro is trying to engage in reasonable debate with you, he has provided sound arguments for his point of view, and you still have not provided him with the screenshot he has asked for. I am sure that continually minusing someone without good reason is not what the reputation system was intended for. He has been very mildly antagonistic; not so much so that he should be getting two minuses from the same two people in three consecutive posts. If you continue like that, you will give a bad impression of yourself, and you may draw the attention of the mods (& they have no reason to be as nice as Faya & co!), especially since MueR gave him a plus for one of those posts. Give the man a counter-argument, and supporting evidence. Don't just disprespect him. That's not right.
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