Author Topic: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly  (Read 29908 times)

Maressa

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #20 on: September 15, 2012, 11:50:07 AM »
Tony, everything you've done up to this point has been amazing and frankly, wonderful, but ... well, I don't want to be "that guy" (and I'm realizing now how often I've been saying that lately...) but I have this horrible feeling that this is going to backfire and have a negative impact on the negotiations between Brian Clayton and NCsoft/Investors. Those negotiations are VERY delicate, and I think that if we're flooding inboxes of the highest of the higher-ups at NCsoft, they'll see it as a nuisance instead of a touching gesture that it's supposed to be.

Though, this is just my cynical view of things, but what if those email addresses get into the wrong hands? People doing baaaaad things with them? It will be our fault and it will be DEVASTATING to the movement.

On the other hand, of course, none of us want to lose this game. I don't want to lose this game, either. I just think that maybe going over this with Alpha Wolf or Misty's contact from the negotiations FIRST would be a better idea before unleashing the masses.

I'm really torn on this.

I have to agree with this completely, for now. Unfortunately due to timezones Tony is asleep right now other wise I would be finding out what I've missed. I'd like to ask everyone to please hold off for now on the emails until I can fully understand what is going on. As it sounds like this is a bit of a panic move. I just want to make sure that everything is going alright before giving the go ahead. As I could see this really biting us. In a few hours Tony will wake up and we will get some answers. Please do not spread the message. Even if this is something we should do we can hold off on it as it is the weekend.


Edit: I'm going to leave my previous message in tact. But having talking about it, while I don't agree with it. I understand it. Please guys, be polite. And don't forget about the Posi run next week. We're still doing it.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2012, 02:15:18 PM by Maressa »

Ultraviolets

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #21 on: September 15, 2012, 12:13:08 PM »
I have to agree with this completely, for now. Unfortunately due to timezones Tony is asleep right now other wise I would be finding out what I've missed. I'd like to ask everyone to please hold off for now on the emails until I can fully understand what is going on. As it sounds like this is a bit of a panic move. I just want to make sure that everything is going alright before giving the go ahead. As I could see this really biting us. In a few hours Tony will wake up and we will get some answers. Please do not spread the message. Even if this is something we should do we can hold off on it as it is the weekend.
I did decide to wait to email until Monday at the earliest. I admit, I'm a bit nervous about the email addresses being on the public CoH forums. I'm not sure if bots scour the forums or not but I could see them getting their hands on the addresses and sending spam, especially with the addresses not being altered to fool them :( Then again, like I said, I'm not sure if the official forums have measures set in place to fool those types of spammers.

Woodnimph

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #22 on: September 15, 2012, 12:21:18 PM »
Tony, everything you've done up to this point has been amazing and frankly, wonderful, but ... well, I don't want to be "that guy" (and I'm realizing now how often I've been saying that lately...) but I have this horrible feeling that this is going to backfire and have a negative impact on the negotiations between Brian Clayton and NCsoft/Investors. Those negotiations are VERY delicate..


My question is, do we have confirmation that negotiations are still happening? We haven't received an update on this in at least a week. All we've heard that I've seen is how motivating our support is
 Perhaps we should find out an update to the negotiations if possible.

Sophronisba

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #23 on: September 15, 2012, 12:46:31 PM »
I also agree with Maressa and BigAngry. I think it is really important not to have kneejerk reactions at this stage. A flood of emails might do more harm than good.

voodoogirl

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2012, 12:47:01 PM »
Always start off with a compliment. Thank them for the wonderful service that they have offer us the last 5 years. Tell them how wonderful their customer service has been whenever you've had an issue, even when you've lost your cool (lie, if you must.)

Then - gently - address the issue. Inform them that as a dedicated, long-term customer, you are dismayed to see your favorite product be canceled but even more than that how it was handled. That the silence you have encountered the last two weeks must be an oversight of some kind and you, as a consumer of NCSoft's products, would greatly like to be assured of that. That surely they didn't mean any disrespect towards you.

Etc. etc. etc.

What I mean is - don't go on the offensive. Go from the angle that you are still a customer of NCSoft (for now.) If you go from the angle you are a lost customer - well, then you're already lost and there will be no effort to get you back. If you continue that you are still a NCSoft customer then they'll want to keep you.

How to Win Friends and Influence People - great book - especially when it comes to approaching situations like this in business matters.

Manga

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #25 on: September 15, 2012, 01:01:20 PM »
TonyV, it's also possible you're being blown off for not going through official channels.  Some companies are very, very strict about that.  Since Korean companies are apparently on the conservative side, probably moreso for them.  If I need to, I can try calling the U.S. HQ on Monday and verify just who the official channel is and how they are to be contacted.

On the more hopeful side, it's possible NCSoft is unwilling to talk because other negotiations are currently in progress.  That would be good news.  Usually a company, even a Korean company, by now would have released a "our decision is final, so save your breath" press release, or even the more ill advised "stop whining and buy another title of ours"  if there is zero chance. 

It could also be a liquidator, a third party company charged with taking control temporarily and eliminating jobs and products to save the company - those never negotiate, and work in cold, logical silence.  Or it's possible that after the shutdown notice, the Board took huge bonuses and went on vacation for a month, which is pretty common in Europe and Asia.


« Last Edit: September 15, 2012, 01:12:30 PM by TheManga »

Turjan

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #26 on: September 15, 2012, 01:16:10 PM »
For those of you worrying about potential communication issues arising from 'cultural differences ' I say simply this - those issues already manifested very clearly in NCSoft's decision to close the game.

Whether you regard the closure decision as a simple proft/loss one, or a move to appease shareholders, or some influence from Nexon...or any of a dozen other corporate strategems, one fact cuts across the entire issue : NCSoft have apparently completely misread the cultural significance City of Heroes has to us in the west.

Superheroes in the west are not merely a money making franchise, a creative theme to build a product around, they have become deeply rooted in our collective psyches in a way they obviously are not in Korea - as can be clearly seen in the bizarre and confusing trailer for 'City of Hero', the aborted Korean launch of our favorite game.

So while there's no doubt corporate reasons underlying the closure decision, I believe that 'cultural differences' lie at the true heart of NCSoft's decision. The recent Blade and Soul news article was titled "NCsoft to Introduce Western Gamers to Asian Martial Arts Fantasy with Blade & Soul" - I actually laughed when I read that. Introduce western gamers to asian martial arts fantasy? Like we've never seen it before? Do they even know what goes on in western culture?

The article went on to say NCSoft were going to "aggressively tailor" Blade and Soul for the western market. I laughed even more at that. For me, their decision to abruptly kill off a game based on a core western cultural concept speaks volumes about their ability to "aggressively tailor" anything for the western market.

Is their attitude crass, or simply culturally naive? One thing is certain - cultural differences between western gamers and NCSoft's Korean based operations mean that if any misconceptions in communication are possible, NCSoft themselves have already made them, so I don't honestly feel any more harm can be done to our campaign via this new email strategy than NCSoft have already done themselves.

If people aren't familiar with Korean culture right now, they're unlikely to be able to cram in a crash course on east-west etiquette before sending an email. This doesn't stop us trying of course, because we'd be being as rude as NCSoft if we didn't at least try to widen our cultural perspectives. Ultimately however, I wonder if it's actually those very differences which will make or break this whole issue.

I suspect NCSoft are preparing to pull back to within Korea's borders, financially, and also culturally. They have remained silent so far because they want this overseas problem to go away, like it never happened - and make no mistake, it WILL go away, one way or another. They will either bury the game, or let it go as they wave goodbye to the west. Past history suggests they'll try to bury it, so I believe our best hope would be if NCSoft actually understood how much superheroes mean to us in the west - and to do that, I believe we have to play on that cultural difference, while still respecting their own culture.

It's a difficult balancing act, but remember that the language of the heart is universal. Play nice when you write - and play the heart strings. We are all people. Yes, even the execs at NCSoft. We may share different cultures, but we are all the same flesh and blood, and we all hurt the same way.

Vulpy

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #27 on: September 15, 2012, 02:09:50 PM »
I'll have to think about this. It isn't the sort of thing I want to embark on lightly.

But I do like V.V.'s idea of networking with autism/CFS/MS/etc. sites. Even if it isn't CoH, those afflicted by these things need to know that there are ways their minds can be free.
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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #28 on: September 15, 2012, 02:25:03 PM »
Tony, everything you've done up to this point has been amazing and frankly, wonderful, but ... well, I don't want to be "that guy" (and I'm realizing now how often I've been saying that lately...) but I have this horrible feeling that this is going to backfire and have a negative impact on the negotiations between Brian Clayton and NCsoft/Investors. Those negotiations are VERY delicate, and I think that if we're flooding inboxes of the highest of the higher-ups at NCsoft, they'll see it as a nuisance instead of a touching gesture that it's supposed to be.

Though, this is just my cynical view of things, but what if those email addresses get into the wrong hands? People doing baaaaad things with them? It will be our fault and it will be DEVASTATING to the movement.

On the other hand, of course, none of us want to lose this game. I don't want to lose this game, either. I just think that maybe going over this with Alpha Wolf or Misty's contact from the negotiations FIRST would be a better idea before unleashing the masses.

I'm really torn on this.

I'm afraid I agree with Big Angry here...

I try to place myself in the shoes of those who will be receiving these emails. If I sit down on Monday morning to my computer, turn it on and start up my email software...only to find my inbox inundated with emails from CoH customers voicing their complaints...  I try to find that one email from the Production Designer who told me he has an urgent message about a problem with the new design...but I can't...because I have 50+ emails stating basically the same thing...

I'm not sure my deaf ear...won't become more deaf. Or worse...become angry.

That being said, I do admire those who choose to email...because of their passion and their willingness to let it be known.

I just fear this will be the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back. And not in a good way.

Omega Mark V

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #29 on: September 15, 2012, 02:40:33 PM »
I have to agree with soundtrack. I don't think this is the right way to go with mass emails.

If there's something under NDA, they just aren't going to share this info with us. It's under the contract.

I know we all want information, and we want to know why this is happening, and most importantly STOPPING IT; but if we're resorting to spamming the Korean CEO's of a company... I just don't know if it's the best thing to do.

I've been praying that God will lend a hand in our movement, prayer is the thing that keeps me optimistic with this catastrophe.

I may email them, but I'm going to wait until the spamming quits. If Koreans expect respect, spamming them definitely won't get us on their good side.

Just my two cents.

Omega Mark V, out.
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Altoholic Monkey

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #30 on: September 15, 2012, 02:49:59 PM »
I really don't think sending emails to them 2 weeks into our movement is a great idea.  Sending them letters is great and has more impact. I wouldn't expect to receive any word if they are in negotiations.  I'm concerned that flooding an inbox with email will not be received well. 

Let's reconsider this action, we will be spamming their inbox with messages. Especially when we've stated that letter writing was better because they could not filter out the mail. I believe that we have some expectations that NCSoft to respond quickly, and because they aren't doing so then we're taking a somewhat drastic action by sending floods of emails.

Perhaps we should try a calling campaign instead, if we really want to contact NCSoft directly, then why not call them and talk to someone?

Rae

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #31 on: September 15, 2012, 03:04:49 PM »
Or perhaps there's a way we can do this..but..not do it?

Maybe it would make more sense for say, five of the Project Co-ordinators on the 'save' campaign to send an email, but attaching some of the testimonials VV has collected (say, five each) as documents to the emails. That way the big bosses will get 5 emails and (say) 25 testimonials, instead of 50 trillion emails.

I think they might accidentally read one, or two of them - maybe even all of them, if there's only a small number - but if they see they've been bulked mailed, they're likely to just hit the delete key without reading any of them, or their spamfilters will be upgraded and we'll be cut off foreverz.

It's also a way of saying 'look, we /could/ have mailbombed you. We're trying to be nice.'

Just a thought, anyway. I'll go back to my corner now :)

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BobMc

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #32 on: September 15, 2012, 03:14:25 PM »
In reading those etiquette links, I see it is common for a lag between initial interest in meeting and actually meeting... as well as it being advisable to be introduced by a mutual friend if possible, instead of direct contact.

So we may very well be in  mismatch of styles.

Taking the Devs out to a meal  however may resonate with their culture well. So that may be a point in our favor.
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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #33 on: September 15, 2012, 03:18:35 PM »
Or perhaps there's a way we can do this..but..not do it?

Maybe it would make more sense for say, five of the Project Co-ordinators on the 'save' campaign to send an email, but attaching some of the testimonials VV has collected (say, five each) as documents to the emails. That way the big bosses will get 5 emails and (say) 25 testimonials, instead of 50 trillion emails.

I think they might accidentally read one, or two of them - maybe even all of them, if there's only a small number - but if they see they've been bulked mailed, they're likely to just hit the delete key without reading any of them, or their spamfilters will be upgraded and we'll be cut off foreverz.

It's also a way of saying 'look, we /could/ have mailbombed you. We're trying to be nice.'

Just a thought, anyway. I'll go back to my corner now :)

I like this idea... especially the implied message of: "We're being reasonable and just communicating with you."

Burnt Toast

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #34 on: September 15, 2012, 03:47:48 PM »
Retweeted and emailed.

My email was short and polite. Focusing more on the community and the great things CoHers have done (Real World Heroes). I didn't beg, threaten, or demand anything...I simply asked them to reconsider a complete shut down and to stay open to other possibilities.

Chaos Ex Machina

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #35 on: September 15, 2012, 04:01:25 PM »
I think it would be a lot smarter to not show the emails and personally forward only the best submissions, OR AT LEAST FILTER THE TROLLS.

Bad idea.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2012, 04:20:06 PM by Chaos Ex Machina »

Harermuir

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #36 on: September 15, 2012, 04:02:34 PM »
I m pretty sure that this is exactly their strategy. Telling nothing, waiting, until server will shut down and we will let it go. Exactly the same as when they decided to drop localization, a few month ago.

Burnt Toast

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #37 on: September 15, 2012, 04:16:22 PM »
I don't see it as spamming them. What I do see it as is passionate customers contacting them in a civil manner telling them why CoH is important to them etc.

If I was a CEO of a game and closed it down and received a couple emails - to me that is indicative of the population - a couple passionate people. Now if I received 20,000 emails of a product...that sends me more of a message. I do think it is important that the emails are courteous and professional. And I do NOT think it should be a scripted email that is simply cut and pasted...that has no meaning behind it. I think people should be encouraged to simply tell their stories about CoH, why it is important to them, asking them to reconsider shutting it down, and thanking them for taking the time to read their thoughts.

No threats of a boycott
No Demands
Focus on the community
Focus on what the game means to you
Ask for them to please reconsider their initial choice and be open to other options

To me THAT is the format each email should take...personal, professional, and focused.

Omega Mark V

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #38 on: September 15, 2012, 04:25:20 PM »
I sent an email to the webmaster, because I thought this method of direct email was rude. I apologized to them, on behalf of how many emails the CEO's may get, and tried to explain why I thought the game has potential in America.

Basically in a summary, I said: "Action games are huge in America, as well as Super Heroes. Since NCSoft makes really original games compared to other companies that I have seen, a new Super Hero Action MMO would do great. Champions Online didn't do this, because it was based on something else, compared to having originality."

Yes they aren't replying to us, but as I've said, it may be under NDA, and they might just not be able to tell us.

One thought I had, is that this whole thing might actually be for a new City of Heroes/Villains game.

Let me explain:

If you have noticed, NCSoft has taken down City Of Heroes on their official website, but Paragon Studios is still on their corporate website. I don't know if this means the studio is being re-developed to make a new game, or will soon be disbanded and removed entirely, but it may be the prior than the latter.

I've also been holding this off, but now seems the time to say it, because this applies to my explanation as well:

I had a dream a while back regarding City Of Heroes, I was under Atlas's statue, talking to someone about something, but it was something good of some sort that happened outside of the game, regarding the game. I don't know if this has to do with the game being saved, there being an announcement of a sequel or what else, all I know is that it wasn't bad. I can't remember written words in my dreams, but I remembered the feeling and what it was for. It was a sigh of relief of sorts, paired with excitement.

I tend to have Deja vu quite a bit concerning games, and I felt this was important to say.

Now, I may be wrong, DEAD wrong, but I like to keep headstrong and optimistic about this catastrophe we all are facing.

We are still a community throughout all of this, but we have to take into account the things we don't know.

Patience is a virtue, and because we don't really have concrete answers at this moment, I resort to prayer.

Omega Mark V, with respect, out.
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houtex

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Re: Call to Action: Contact NCsoft Directly
« Reply #39 on: September 15, 2012, 04:51:20 PM »
I waffled a little on this.  I truly did.  On the one hand, sure, it's rude, and they'll be getting a ton of crap from some seriously angry people, and that is the damn shame of it all right there.

And as such I on the face of it wanted no part of it.  Because I don't want to be part of those who would threaten and shout at the people who did, in fact, keep this game going for 8 years.  Let us not forget that.

And I thought... I had other things to do... still do, they're delayed now... but I thought... and decided... if I don't do it now, I won't get an opportunity later.

So I sent a letter to the three of them.  It took me an hour to write, and I'm sure it's completely inadequate and wrong of me to have done so.  But I did it anyway, because time is short, they're not talking, so I'm going to speak up, and directly.  Frack it.

Here is what I sent them, for better or worse.  And if you guys/gals have a problem with it, well... I'm sorry I disappointed in some way, but It Is Done.

Quote
Dear Sirs and Madam:

I am hoping that I may somehow get in before the deluge of emails that are probably coming your way.  I am hopeful you will understand the passion for which some of the people who are going to email you, since your addresses have become public.

But it is my belief that not speaking now is a mistake.  Time is short, and any effort needs to be swift, and as such, I am writing to you directly.

---

The unexpected decision to close Paragon Studios and sunset City of Heroes was a shock two weeks ago.  It still is. Many would (and have done so, sad to say) decry this decision, simply because their 'toy' is being taken away.  I do not believe I am one of those people.  I would not fight for just the game, that is self-serving of an individual at best, and is not the only reason why I'm writing you.

I personally can understand business decisions regarding product.  If the product isn't selling, or more to the point, isn't generating profit, then it is something that cannot sustain itself, and it needs to be taken off the market.  To read what I have, this was not the case for City of Heroes.  There appear to be other titles in your library that would have been a better choice in this respect, to read the reports.  This sows confusion among the customers.

Then there is this: That Blade and Soul is now being offered just after, and that Guild Wars 2 was released just before, the announcement of the closure of City of Heroes simply reeks of a push to get us to play something else in your library rather than carry on with our preferred game of choice.  That there was also more content (and that content was to be, as is said in the community, "HUGE") on the cusp of being released 'Live' in City of Heroes just about drives the stake in on this theory.

Further, the complete silence about the closure from NCSoft, apart from Paragon Studios posting it on the main website for City of Heroes, and the following PR statement from your company just after.. more confusion.  "Why is NCSoft treating us this way?" people are wondering, myself among them.

To be quite frank, your continued silence, and your corporate management of these three titles (as well as the five titles in five years being shut down, including City of Heroes) has many in the community of City of Heroes.. if not an extended community of MMOs.. asking these questions:

1) Why would anyone play anything to do with NCSoft if the end result is a 'lightswitch' end to the game, and not talk about why that is happening?
2) Why would anyone play antything that they can create characters in, make relationships in, only to have it killed unexpectedly by a board meeting?

As an example, Tablua Rasa was not 'making it'.  It's closure was expected.  There was no doubt.  But City of Heroes?  Nothing so far as can be seen proves it wasn't fine and profitable as it was.  This closure puts confusion and doubt about all MMOs, and damages the reputation of the entire industry.  In my opinion, NCSoft would be very ill advised, from that particular standpoint, to let City of Heroes or any other property be closed down, and not just for the well being of your company, but ALL of the online gaming industry.

---

From a personal standpoint..

As long as this action continues to its inevitable conclusion, I have no choice but to do what I think is right for myself.  Which is, namely, never play any MMO again.  Never play anything where I might create something that is under the control of another entity.  Because I will simply not pour any money or time into anything of this nature to have it ripped away unemotionally, unexpectedly.  Not going to happen.  It may extend to most of the online gaming industry, to be honest.  And definitely, NCSoft's reputation is tarnished by the way this closure was/is being done, and as such.. I cannot support your company's efforts beyond November 30, 2012, I am sorry to have to say.  Barring something saving City of Heroes and your company is widely known to have helped that cause, in which case.. perhaps I will try GW2 or Blood and Soul....

In City of Heroes, I made characters I care about.  They are being taken away.  This is not trivial.  Without the work of Paragon Studios and your company, I would not have had that experience, nor that creativity.. that continues today.  I make other characters still, more costumes..

But even that pales into the sudden requirement of the entirety of Paragon Studios being told to go work elsewhere, your profitable game, the hard work and effort into the art, the community they've helped generate.. all that means nothing anymore.. that had to hurt them worse than anything in the City of Heroes community can express.  I do not know if you saw the news about the community buying the entire staff of Paragon a dinner, in a window of around 3 hours to generate the monies.  I myself was unable to donate to that particular idea, as it was done and over before I could hit [Donate!], and hope (as do others) that there will be other opportunities to do similar acts for the fantastic people who made and worked on City of Heroes.

I do not believe there is any precedent in the history of MMOs or online gaming like it.  This is how much we care about the fantastic people who made this work of art.  This is part of what you are closing, a fantastic community of players, developers and moderators of the forums and the game, and the like of which one would be hard pressed to find elsewhere.

I must say this: I would pay double the subscription fee... perhaps more... if it would have helped.  As it was, once I subscribed all those years ago, I never stopped paying.. even if I wasn't playing for whatever personal reasons, the subscription kept on, waiting for my return, and return I did.  Often.  And with new ideas to try.  The game still has so many years of play left for a lot of us, because we haven't done it all yet.

There is nothing like City of Heroes out there.  Not. One. Thing. 

Please, somehow, let this work of art be saved.  Somewhere.  In it's 'final form' if that is how it is to be, even, would be a better fate than burying this fantastic machine of creativity and expression.  Do not let your hard work, Cryptic/Paragon Studios hard work, and frankly, all the players hard work in their characters be lost. 

There simply has to be some way other than complete closure.

---

There is one thing I'd like to say before I close. 

I appreciate your part in allowing City of Heroes to be alive for the time it was.  I am fully aware that without your help over the years, Paragon, and before it, Cryptic, would not have had City of Heroes see the light of day.  We would not have had the expansions, the new content, get the opportunity to play the 'other side' in City of Villains, get to be in between a Hero and a Villain in Going Rogue, nor had the artistic abilities that are possible in the Mission Architect system. 

We would not have gotten to know and discuss things with the Developers and Moderators.  We would not have gotten to know and talk with people from all over the world.

So sincerely, and honestly:

Thank you for the grand ride.  Thank you very much indeed.  I truly wish it didn't have to end.


@houtex in City of Heroes
houtex in the City of Heroes Forums.

Mike