Thank you very much everyone for placing me on CSM 6 and now on CSM 7 where I am currently serving as the Chairman! If you would like to contact me directly, do not hesitate to just send me an eve mail in game. Keep your eyes here and watch for new posts.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Black Friday

Amarr - Thousands of players gather at trade hubs all over EVE.
I woke up this morning to find the forums even more afire with rage about Incarna, the "Fearless" newsletter, and the Virtual Goods store. I could tell in a few minutes that I wasn't going to get anything else done today.

So, I've spent most of the last 12 hours answering player questions, trying to give CCP good feedback on the issues, trying to get them to see how bad things have gotten. My fellow CSMs were doing the same.

Late in the day, we were presented with a draft devblog, and asked to comment on it. With the exception of the removal of a rather unfortunate analogy, that draft was essentially identical to what was just published.

None of CSM's concerns -- the ones the players were asking about -- were addressed; in particular:
  • Will non-vanity virtual goods be introduced?
  • Will CCP change their virtual goods pricing strategy?
  • Will the CQ remain optional, or will it eventually be forced on the players?
To say that CSM is disappointed in this devblog would be an understatement. Incredulous is more like it.

Based on the devblog, and my impressions from the conversations I have had in recent days, it is my opinion that CCP has decided upon a strategy with respect to virtual goods and Incarna, and that they are going to fearlessly implement it regardless of feedback from CSM or the players.

Our words, and yours, on this issue seem to be worthless. Only our actions have any weight.

I am carefully considering what to do next as I mull all this over.


  1. Unless you intend to quit EVE entirely, DO. NOT. RESIGN. If you resign, you fall out of a position of influence. Your resignation will mean nothing and send no message. If you stay on the CSM, your position will allow you to keep pressing player concerns. Even if those concerns are ignored, it makes it clear to CCP that you are more connected to the players than they are.

    GL with whatever you decide to do.

  2. I already said this on FHC but I think you should get someone in the media to do a proper piece on how CCP is in free fall mode. Patrick Klepek is the only guy I know of who does anything resembling investigative games journalism but there might be some other people as well.

  3. Oh I'm not going anywhere. No resigning or anything of that sort. I am, however, going to have some serious talks with the other CSM members and see how all this plays out. We've got to figure out exactly WHAT happened here and what role CCP actually wants the CSM to play though.

  4. I love your work with the CSM and I have always valued your opinions. I think CCP needs to understand what kind of game they have... Unlike most MMOs, EVE's gameplay is fuled by politics and in-game markets which are completely controlled by the players. With that said, it's not wise to go against the wishes of your players. What kind of EGO do you have to have to refuse you made a mistake and correct it? It's rediculous. Please continue to work with CCP and the CSM.

    Your Fan,

  5. I think a walkout of the entire CSM would send a pretty strong message though.

  6. I have been in EVE since mid-way through Exodus. I just killed my two accounts, I will not be treated this way. Especially not by a company I feel I helped grow from what? 20 guys to a mini-multinational.

    Ironic in that today I also ordered a Navy Apoc (wish it was a Paladin) model from the store as a birthday treat to myself. A momento of good times I guess.

    I feel and perhaps it is something you can communicate to CCP that I didn't want to do this; the last few days has felt like CCP have done nothing but told me to "Go away. You're too poor to play our game."

  7. Sorry that came over all emo. Kind of haz a sad at the momment.

  8. hi seelene.
    thank you for all the efforts and time you invested in this (eve)comunity. also thx for the nice readings in your blogs.

    tbh when you were elected i doubted you would be the right person for the job - thx for proving that i was wrong. so please don't resign from csm, keep up the fight for us players instead.

    you guys are our last defense line so don't let us down. give ccp some hard times - show them who made them successful in the first place. try to get some external media support. mobilize players for coordianted protests.

    no matter in which aliance we are or what our prefered playing-style is, now is the time when we all should fight for the game we love, together.

    agram tabris

  9. EVE Radio is devoting the 2hr Funky Bacon slot to disecting CCP.

    Is it a bad thing when a radio station dedicated to people who love your product pulls out a magnifying glass and starts snooping?

  10. "Will CCP change their virtual goods pricing strategy?"

    Wasn't the NEx pricing strategy pretty clear? At least as far as cosmetics go, they planned to open with a few high-priced exclusives and later fill in the range from cheaper to extreme gouging. This is what "the foreseeable future" looks like, according to the dev blog.

    Unless you meant their broader strategy including non-vanities, but wouldn't that make it redundant after "Will non-vanity virtual goods be introduced?"

  11. It always ends well when a company completely disregards the desires of their (very vocal) customers, right?

  12. I like how the CSM thinks they are relevant, when it's just a popularity contest. Want to make a real change? Do what others have done.

    1) Join ISD
    2) Stick to it, be awesome. (This will take 1+ years)
    3) Use that to get an "in" as a GM (many GMs are former ISD members, not nearly all, but a good handfull of them)
    4) Move on from GM to Dev. There are a couple devs who started in ISD.

    Then you will matter.

  13. Has the CSM considered going over Hilmar's head and getting in touch with the board of directors?

  14. Just ask them whats about all the things they showed us during the "Security Briefing" @ Fanfest this year.
    - Report Bot Function
    - Taskforce to deal with the bots / third party progs

    Why not going this way to lower the ingame ISK / reduce the generated ISK (& so the plex).

  15. Hey Seleene,

    Please konw that you've got a huge number of fans. Keep up the good fight.

    Your updates are great and your effort is much appreciated!

  16. Hello Seleene,

    I apologize for the length of this comment and the fact that it comes out of the blue - but I must implore upon you to pass on something to CCP regarding MT should you get a chance to do so.

    If their looking for any models for MT or vanity stores that work: please, please tell them to look at what Valve have done with TF2's mannconomy. Not only is the store a HUGE example of how MT is done RIGHT, but its also an example of how its done right in a manner that doesnt require you to spend money if you dont have it.

    Every item in the Mann-co store is obtainable either through a) trading or b) random luck / crafting. There are very, very few items that can only be obtained by purchasing something and then also usually tie ins with other games or products which in turn can work out for Nvidia/Sony if they team up with CCP.

    The model and way they've done has worked out enough that they can now afford to go completely free to play based on player metrics that are /very/ close to what CCP has.

    A similar system in EVE would, in my opinion at least, be an /excellent/ addition to the MT store and the way to go.

    An example of this is such: you have the monocle now. Change the primary means of obtaining it from the NEX store to manufacturing in-game with existing materials (finally giving a use for the NPC goods that've existed for so long). However, these BPCs/BPOs have to go through legal procedures - i.e. "Contracts" with Quafe and the companies in-game, which requires millions (or a billion) ISK up front in order to gain the right to manufacture. Eventually the cost will go down to that of materials, but having the barrier to entry means that not only is ISK sunk back out of the system but it wont be entirely cheap either.

    Top it all off, each one has an imperfection so everyone can get a monocle, but its a low-grade one. Its the standard free fair. The stuff in your NEX store? Thats the /shiny/ stuff. The really good versions of what already exists. For paying a bit of money you get it right then and there, hassle free.

    There should be in-game ways to obtain that too - but only through, say, an /extremely/ lucky drop from complex bosses that let you upgrade your existing monocle to a perfect one. Or to get the rare materials / BPC needed to get just the right kind of suit and so on.

    Hell, you dont even have to seed the item - just very, very limited run BPCs alone will mean that more monocles enter the market to ensure its at least within the /potential/ grasp of anyone - but never less than the cost of simply buying one via PLEX/Aurum.

    As for items to sell - CCP has many, many options here. From simple Machinima camera kits that activates advanced camera controls and mechanisms in EVE to full tours of the major hot spots in the galaxy or even just something as cool as ship paint; as long as there's some way to get it through regular gameplay, but an easier (and REASONABLY priced) method through the store, /enough/ people will buy them to help CCP out in the long run.

    I apologize for the rambling once more and thank you for your time.

    A long time silent player,
    Alternate22 / Singh

  17. So an emergency trip to Iceland. It sounds... wonderful, jamed in to an airliner seat for fark knows how many hours, two days of meetings and then the return trip. I honestly feel sorry for you guys.

    Saying that though it does make you wonder why? Obviously I don't know for sure but I'd wager the amount of unsubs just pushed EVE below it's theoretical sutainability (even factoring in a stupidly high % of players using cash shop) point.

    Which considering everthing I can only agree with happening. Why they'd renade on the no MT thing, bring in a cash shop, charge that amount knowing it'll piss off the player base when we're months away from SWTOR comming out I've no idea.

    It's pants on head retarded and makes me suspicious of who exactly advised them to do it. CCP are dumb at times but I've never seen them do something THAT dumb, although 18 months is pretty damn close.

  18. To sum up the arguments I'm seeing currently:

    P1: "CCP have said no play 2 win in EVE ever."
    BitVet: "CCP said there'd be no MT in EVE ever 12 months ago."
    P1: "Well, things change, they are a business afterall."
    BitVet: "Exactly my point."
    P1: "Whu? So you agree no P2W in EVE then, stop raging."
    BitVet: "Are you retarded or just being obtuse?"
    P1: "CCP said no Play 2 Win in EVE ever."

    CCP need to fix that feedback loop, fix it effectivley for the lifespan of the game and in such a way that the playerbase (and potential playerbase) actually believe them.

    I leave a quick & simple solution to doing that to the imagination, but to my mind it requires simply removing one button from the current station services panel.

    I no longer feel sad, depressed or angry about being booted from EVE. I've moved to a much younger MMO, with a vibrant community... they will tell tales of me and my corp/alliance at some point.

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. How comes yours and Robert's post for the day are verbatim copies (except for his nice comedy bit about pissing on fires) ?
    Did you guys fall prey to the same monster that possessed Zulu's body to write his recent devblogs ?

  21. Any news?

    All has been quiet on the CSM-front for a long time!

  22. wow is very good.