September 08, 2009

Explaining the Twitter Issue to NCsoft

Alright, after reading the official beta forum again you can see a lot of people got really upset about the way NCsoft handled the communication during the first two days of the beta and when all hell broke loose due to the several issues. There is a longer thread "Stop with Twitter" and for those not able to read it, players complain about NCsoft using twitter as a communication channel for important information and "tech support". Ayase posted in this thread but how i see it he misunderstood what people are complaining about. So let's try to sum it up and clarify it: Players are upset about the LACK of communication in the official forum and on the official website. No one is upset about the community team using twitter for complementary information or to point to interesting articles, websites, telling us from fair events, etc. During the first two days when all the issues arised there was nearly zero support or official posts in the forum or on the website. Only players helping players trying to figure stuff out. We're not complaining about the fact the community team also hints at "tech support" solutions, but that the tweets from the Aion team were the only infos we got for a long time.

What needs to be done in times like this and for proper support? Get someone to post in the offical forum and sort out the known issues. Right now the Known Issues forum contains six posts (and yesterday it was even less) and the accumulated thread with known OBT issues is out-to-date since day one. You need to kick tech support to create a proper list with issues and give us updates and the status (known, pending, solved, etc.) or possible solutions. If NCsoft would sort out their forum support this would make things for them easier as well, since there will be less posts of the same issues again and again. I fail to understand why there is so bad "crisis management" for many a MMO launch. It feels like the same stuff over and over again and like the teams have to invent the wheel again despite the company has released other games before. Let's hope support and communication will step up a notch for release and the learning curve is steep. From what i read at least the latency issues for the US got much better after yesterdays short maintenance. Hopefully NCsoft will get on top of the other issues as well.

On a sidenote: If you're still worked up about issues you have with the Aion beta and you need something to cheer you up. Listen to the latest Multiplaying.net Podcast (006): BOURBON. This is (nearly?) the same crew that did the CotCast Podcasts back in Warhammer and the guys & girls hosting the show are awesome. It's by far the funniest podcast i know and I'm a fan since WAR times. Topics are widely spread over gaming in general. Guest host this time is Rer from the Insert Awesome Aion Name blog.

7 comments:

Rev. Lazaro said...

Is it of any merit Ayase posted on Twitter for a while about how even NCSoft employees were having trouble with their forum accounts? At least there was an effort for real time communication. Plus, the forums are being bombarded and any comment or reply would most likely be drowned out by the repeat of a bajillion threads from people who failed to search for exisitng posts in the first place. Twitter, Facebook and the like has given them a medium for a sort of direct broadcast; they can take in the flood but EVERYONE following gets the broadcasted reply.

I think the entitlement generation of MMO Players are just trying to find more things to cry about when they're just trying to do their job.

Thulf said...

Due to its intended function of just providing info snippets twitter is not suited to offer a proper support function. You can't really look up information or update eg. known issues. Let alone its rather annoying if you would need to follow four different peeps for this purpose. It can be fun as an additional tool, but the "real support" needs to be centralized in the official forum and their website.

Rer said...

I couldn't agree more. NCSoft needs to start posting on the official site and forums more.

That's what stickies are for.

Athryn said...

I'd rather they post less overall and just work on fixing their issues (I know, I know, the community team != the people actually fixing things)

Michael said...

The point is not that the people that are fixing should talk with the community, but rather they should ensure that there are additional people whose job is to talk with the community while the other people fix the problem.

When the game is released, this community will be the paying customers and talking to customers is called 'service'. It should be self-evident that NCSoft communicates with their customers, escpecially when problems arise. No company would dare ignore their business customers when there are problems. As much as this is a game, it's also a business.

Slurms said...

Thanks for the shoutout Thulf!!

Anonymous said...

I found the twitter feeds very usefull to get information i needed. Especially since I could not access the official forums at all.