Friday, May 17, 2013

2,000 friends! Developer questions, part 1

2,000 friends.

It doesn't seem possible.

I remember how I felt when I was sat here writing about getting 1,000 Facebook friends, and just the overwhelming sense of appreciation and feeling completely humbled. And just a few months later, here I am trying to find the words to express what it feels like to know that we've doubled that number.

And, like last time, we sort of smashed through the big number.

I was talking to Cameron (Segev) Johnson on Skype about our upcoming Kickstarter, and the fact that we were starting to approach 2,000 friends. I asked for ideas of what we could show our community as a thank you, Nate and Yoko threw some ideas out there, DC promised to write a blog. We thought of a few ideas of things we could give our 2,000 FB friend.

"How long do you think we've got to organise this?" Segev asked.

I ummed and aaahed, and said that it could go either way. Some days we get 30 new friends, some days we get three. There's no real science in it and I tried to explain that to him, as best as I could, and with too many smiley faces.

"Best guess..probably 9, 10 days?" I said.

The next morning, I woke up to discover we had 2,009 Facebook friends, and messages of congratulations from the gaming websites, the podcasts, and you guys who have supported us and thrown your faith into what we're trying to do. 

Seeing the notifications of new 'friends' on Facebook always warms the cockles of my heart. Each little red number is genuinely like finding a new friend, a member of a community that was scattered to the winds too early.

..but you sorta got there a bit fast, so bear with us a couple of days while we iron out a few details.

In the meantime, while I try to wrestle screenshots out of Nate (he hides them in his beard, don't you know?) and we get the final details of our next Livestream event bashed out, here's the first set of questions you asked us, duly answered by our devs.

If we haven't answered your question yet, don't stress - it'll be posted up soon.

As always, a huge, huge thank you. Whether you're here because you're genuinely interested in TPP and what we can offer, or if you're just here because we're becoming one of the largest former-COH communities on the net, you're here, and that's all that matters.

Press Officer, public relations, and that chick who is still, despite all the odds, posting stuff on Facebook, Twitter and G+. Seriously. Can you believe they haven't got rid of me yet?


1. Curiosity question: Is Samuiko on the team? 

Cameron 'Segev' Johnson, Studio director, Missing Worlds Media: "To my knowledge, she is not - if she's on under a pseudonym, I don't know about it. She would be welcome, however, if she is interested!

  • What can we expect in terms of end game content? Are we going to see raids like Hamidon that anyone can go on or will you need certain items/skills/flags.
  • What will be at endgame? Raids pvp ext... Will raids require tactics to take bosses down or tank and spank?
Cameron 'Segev' Johnson, Studio director, Missing Worlds Media: "Endgame is actually something we're still thinking very hard about.

"Personally, I want to design it so that it doesn't feel like you suddenly changed the game you're playing when you reach it.  Too many MMOs have the nature of the game change significantly at the end, shifting to PvP and mass-raid with gear-centric advancement.

"Players who enjoyed the game leveling up suddenly feel like they are no longer welcome; players who want the end-game feel that the levels leading up to it are a speed bump to get through before getting to the "real" game. I would like to design our game and endgame so that they merge fluidly. Exactly how we are going to achieve this remains a matter of brainstorming.

"We have numerous ideas and half-ideas; at least one is inspired by the Incarnate system. I'm thinking to some extent that base-building and indirect PvP in influence-spreading of factions or alignments around the city might be a part of it, but again, this is still in the "what can we do?" stages.

"An attractive bit of that is that player characters can be involved at any level. But it would have to be carefully done to maintain the comic book feel, rather than turning into "Politics: The MMO."

3. Asymmetric costume patterns - yay or nay?
Cameron 'Segev' Johnson, Studio director, Missing Worlds Media: "Yay."

Lauren 'Rae' O'Neill, press office, Missing Worlds Media: "Really? Yay!"

Jessica 'Nytrinhia/Yoko' Weaver, art director, Missing Worlds Media:  "One of our very first considerations when we started planning for our costume creator is just that.

" Among such things as quadrupeds, upgrading the "Radmonize" button to allow you to lock in features you want to keep and how much slider customization we can do before we break the game and/or model mesh, the ever popular request of Asymmeticality is on the table and in the plans"

4. Will there be a facepalm emote? That's a dealbreaker for me

Cameron 'Segev' Johnson, Studio director, Missing Worlds Media: "I don't see why not."

5. What steps are you taking to avoid legal issues that COH had to deal with early on, such as limiting costume options to avoid tribute creations that Marvel, DC, even NCSoft may be keeping an eye on? Will there be policing of names and costumes? 

Cameron 'Segev' Johnson, Studio director, Missing Worlds Media:  "Well, we are not going to have anybody else's IP inserted into the game "officially," first of all. It will be stuff only our contributors developed.

"The actual question, though, focuses on the problems of customizability leading to TotallyNotWolverine, the PC. We will have a banned list of names; it obviously won't be exhaustive, as there are so many ways to sneak some weird spelling of, say, "Wolverine," into a name generator.

"We won't have explicitly banned costume combinations, because honestly, that's just not possible to do usefully. Our EULA will state that no creation that violates copyright, trademark, and IP laws is permitted, and that we reserve the right to change any that engender complaints thereof.

"We will be responsive to such complaints, as well. It's the best I think we can do. We're in the same boat as the ESRB when it comes to rating online user-driven interactions. We can be responsive, but pro-active prevention is largely futile. We can only do our best and show good faith under the law." 

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