Tobold's Blog
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
The nuclear option

Gevlon has made it his personal goal to be less nice and more outrageous than anyone else in the MMO blogosphere. Not an easy task, that. Especially if you already have people like Syncaine shouting and cursing invectives at anyone they don't agree with. So to beat Syncaine's "WoW tourist" insult, Gevlon claims that anyone leaving WoW for a while is the ghetto scum of the WoW population, because players who are either nice or good would stay with their friends in WoW.

And if that wasn't outrageous enough, Gevlon has a theory why Age of Conan failed: Blizzard deliberately banned half a million botters on AoC's release date, sending all that ghetto scum to AoC to destroy the competition. Gevlon says WoW has a million customers that are so bad that they would destroy any game community, except WoW's (where there is no community and they are diluted by 10 million other players). And whenever a competitor launches a game, Blizzard simply chooses the nuclear option and sends that ghetto scum to the competitor's game, trampling it into the ground.

Now that is the funniest theory I've read in a while. Syncaine's paranoia and desire to blame somebody else for the failure of his favorite game style is understandable, but such angst is never very entertaining, no matter how many swear words he uses. But if you go completely over the top with that theory, as Gevlon does, it starts to become amusing. I can't wait to read that in EA's annual financial report: "Warhammer Online failed to reach the 500k subscribers we announced as criteria for success because Blizzard used the nuclear option and sent their worst players our way to destroy our game. Not our fault, honest!"
By "incentives" do you mean "invectives"? (Or have I just not been reading the syncaine blog enough to see the incentives he is actually talking about.)
They're both idiots and I wonder why you even acknowledge their existence (though I guess being entertained by their idiocy is probably why).
What is truly outrageous/offensive is Gevlon's use of that image in the context of his post - hello, racial stereotyping?
Fixed spelling mistake. Thanks, Dillon.
Actually reading the Syncaine comment threads, am I the only one who finds it kind of funny that, in an argument about a blizzard game vs. another game, that people regularly throw to words "zerg" and "zerging" around, considering where the word "zerg" comes from?

(To me it also speaks to a big reason for WoW's success vs. other MMO's, in that blizzard had a bunch of other popular games, seemingly more than other MMO businesses, and gained a big marketing advantage initially from that.)
I'm picturing a million ninja looters/drama queens/chuck norris spammers/gold farmers all going en-masse to a new game and destroying the player community. Its cruel, I know, but its really giving me a good laugh.

Maybe after being kicked out of a PUG or a guild 5 times, Blizzard sells your email address to LOTRO or WAR for a free one-month trial, lol.
I have an alternative conspiracy theory:

Agent Blizz (switching his nametag to that of OtherCo): "Hey, Mr Angryblog. Great work you're doing on our behalf. Insulting half the people who want to try our game is really helping sales."

Angryblog: "Only doing my duty. We gotta run these no-good WOW tourists out of town!"

Agent Blizz: "Keep up the good work. Here's a bottle of cheap vodka as a token of our appreciation. Make sure you drink it before you post, and if you ever run out, give us a call. There's plenty more where that came from."

Angryblog: "Thanks, bud. I can feel a post coming on right now. Hic!"

Agent Blizz: "Muahahahaha...."

Seriously, though. Is it any more mad to believe that Blizzard are paying these idiots to make their game community look bad than it is to believe that they're deliberately sending waves of bad customers over to destroy it?
Gevlon's blog is a little weird- I tend to skip through a lot of the sociopathic opinion stuff he does, but I do enjoy his brutal economic commentary.
lol fun stuff, maybe I should check this "sociopath" out for some good chortles. I know Blizzard does market more aggressively and try to retain their players whenever a major launch occurs though so... yeah ;)
Similar to Cuba and the USSR sending hardened criminals over to the USA instead of political prisoners.
I really enjoy reading some people's thoughts about these games, but I dislike it when they become less objective. I like less these conspiracy kinds of theories.

Sometimes the blogosphere reminds me of the government as it is portrayed in Atlas Shrugged. It is almost like gamers have individual stakes in games and are mad when the their games act in such a way as to turn a profit, or are crushed by the better game. So they call people names who ruined their game and try to affect a change by manipulation.

Good games are good because they are good. That may not mean it is your favorite. Of course companies do things to crush the competition--that is business. If the competition is worthy, they will stand. If your game changes because your company has to adapt to stay competitive, that is life. News flash, the world doesn't revolve around you and it should not be morphed to suit your purposes.
Hilarious. Tobold you outdid yourself on this post. You perfectly summed up two people right now that are being very wacko on their blogs.
I started following Gevlon's blog for his good reports on WoW economy and auction tips etc and they're still worth reading. The other goblinish wisdom rants has been good for laughs, but really now, its getting more and more obvious he's churning those out purely to provoke. "If you leave wow to try another MMO you are the worst kind of M&S" ? /rolls eyes.

Isn't the reason people play new games that they are bored with their old ones? I don't even understand why this is turned into a negative thing now if people happen to be leaving WoW, I think I'll need to have that explained for me.

Something for next sunday open topic perhaps.
I haven't read Gevlon's posts yet but in regarding the references here to Syncaine, I think a lot of his criticisms are valid.
These posts seem to be dwelling on the wrong data. I think a more interesting question is how WoW has contuned to grow while at the same time games like WAR and LotRo have duplicated the success of former genre heavy weights like EQ. My thoughts on this are here:

That's a very good point. Maybe the truth is that they've all succeeded, it's just that WOW has succeeded more.
I have long stopped adding my own page views to Gevlon's blog. I hope that this post doesn't substantially add to his readership as I'm sure it's added to his ego. He is the epitome of internet idealists who evangelically espouse unanalyzed ideas to the exclusion of all other rational thought. Leave him be and perhaps he'll get bored and go away.
I have a hard time taking anybody other that you seriously about these issues - these two almost immediately discredit themselves because of the sweeping generalizations and trite stereotypes of players of these games. Most of it is absurd trollery, meant to lure in people. It's insulting to those of us that thoughtfully evaluate new games that come out. I'm sure I'll find a WoW replacement eventually, but it hasn't happened yet. WAR had more promise than just about anything else I've played, but it didn't live up to it. I think the server population issues were grossly mismanaged by Mythic despite their alleged cause (some claim that WoW tourists caused the issues).
You have to take Gevlon with a huge pinch of salt. He is very materialistic regarding his blog traffic and seems to love to troll you, Tobold, and the World of Matticus people to promote his blog. It seems to work and I'm sure this post by him, provoking this response by you will push his traffic a lot higher.

His redeeming feature is that he is often very interesting. Not just the economic stuff the "good enough" post he did was a good take on a subject that a lot of bloggers including Rohan and Matticus have talked about and I believe that he started the ball rolling.

The posts about conspicuous consumption were excellent and the spirited attempt to systematise pug raiding was a fascinating experiment he documented well.

You also write some of your best stuff when provoked - he makes you think.

I rarely agree with him but I enjoy reading him and I see him linked on a great many blogs.
Hah, didn't quite read it that way :) Had a good laugh though.
yeah, outrageous. The worst part is that Gevlon is right.
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