Author Topic: ...no comment. (For the journos.)  (Read 17600 times)

Steele Magnolia

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #40 on: October 18, 2012, 11:03:47 PM »

I don't want to derail this conversation, so I will simply point out that the Tea Party considers Fox News to be centrist, not conservative. I should know. I'm a Tea Party person myself.

But on whether it matters at all where on the political spectrum a media outlet is in regards to our cause here - I consider CNN to be centrist leaning left and MSNBC to be extreme left. And you know what? I bloody don't give a rip - If it would help our cause here, I'd send these stories to them in a heartbeat to put WHATEVER spin on it they'd like as long as it gets our cause ATTENTION.

However - since the election is coming up on in the first week of November and we have until the end of November before the game closes, there may be enough time between those two points for a non-political story to gain some traction.

Of course this doesn't end on Nov 30th anyway.

At this point I'd wear spandex and let crowds of any political leaning laugh in my face and rant about politics, economics, martians landing, whatever got them to show up as long as it brought attention to the game's unjust closure. I simply chose Fox because it bends more towards their political leanings.



Victoria Victrix

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #41 on: October 18, 2012, 11:33:09 PM »
Quite frankly ANY mainstream news mention of this story, so long as the emphasis is placed on what NCSoft is doing to (USA! USA! USA!  oh, and yeah, you Eurotypes too) customers and not on LOLSillyGamers is going to be good coverage.  Slant it right wing or left wing, it's still good coverage.
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malonkey1

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #42 on: October 18, 2012, 11:51:55 PM »
I suppose if you needed to find a centrist news outlet, I'd point first toward the BBC. They may not get much respect in the states, but they're pretty highly regarded in the EU, esp. UK. Really, the only reason I'm aware of BBC News is because I bought access to BBC America to watch Doctor Who. (And I'm pretty sure the Doctor would take our side in this... :P)
BadWolf: "The point that JaguarX is trying to make, of course, is that City of Heroes is like a tree. And Google is like a Toyota...Corolla...? Which would make NCSoft a trespasser, shot by...um, Mister T...which is good, because diplomacy...?"

The internet is full of Comedy Gold.

Vulpy

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #43 on: October 19, 2012, 12:47:15 AM »
I really have no idea which US outlets might be interested in it (sorry, your leaning to the left, leaning to the right thing sounds like a dance to me. I was totally lost :-p), but once the press release is sorted and if Tony doesn't freak out when he sees it, you guys can send it to whoever you think it might be interesting to, and obviously it can be tweaked to appeal to any number of places.

National Public Radio and Public Radio International might be willing to run it as a "human interest" piece. It'd fight right in between the shocking expose on Italian spaghetti farmers and the retrospective on Brazilian folk music. (I kid because I care. I less-than-three public radio.)
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Victoria Victrix

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #44 on: October 19, 2012, 01:04:48 AM »
National Public Radio and Public Radio International might be willing to run it as a "human interest" piece. It'd fight right in between the shocking expose on Italian spaghetti farmers and the retrospective on Brazilian folk music. (I kid because I care. I less-than-three public radio.)

I can certainly see it there.  And since we don't have visuals, we could use audio tracks.  Nice heroic CoH music and the "ooooh"  "aaaah"  "oh yeaaaaah" from the Gon Dance Boobs and Shame clip.  Believe me, that will tell even LISTENERS what is going on there.
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JaguarX

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #45 on: October 19, 2012, 04:09:20 AM »
Quite frankly ANY mainstream news mention of this story, so long as the emphasis is placed on what NCSoft is doing to (USA! USA! USA!  oh, and yeah, you Eurotypes too) customers and not on LOLSillyGamers is going to be good coverage.  Slant it right wing or left wing, it's still good coverage.

Yea that is the side of the line we would want to be on, the NCSoft option. Yet, we know that LOLSillyGAmers and people Nerdraging seem to catch more attention as it fits into the stereotypical view of people that dont play online games. It should be slanted as we the customer and an disagreeable buisness practice instead of "Gamers raging because company shuts down game!! Next up, is Dr. Phil on Gaming Addicts!"

 How did that negative stereotype get assigned to online gamers anyways? The one where we are either socially awkward pimple bespec. nerds that spend hours playing games, or jobless adults living in moms basement living off cold pizza and too lazy to do our own laundry? From the looks of it, I havent came across too many raging nerds or basement dwellers. From the looks of it we at least have an accomplished author, an IT worker, well several IT people, a government person, buisness people, a few law people.

Adrenalin

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #46 on: October 19, 2012, 04:11:18 AM »

I don't want to derail this conversation, so I will simply point out that the Tea Party considers Fox News to be centrist, not conservative. I should know. I'm a Tea Party person myself.

But on whether it matters at all where on the political spectrum a media outlet is in regards to our cause here - I consider CNN to be centrist leaning left and MSNBC to be extreme left. And you know what? I bloody don't give a rip - If it would help our cause here, I'd send these stories to them in a heartbeat to put WHATEVER spin on it they'd like as long as it gets our cause ATTENTION.

However - since the election is coming up on in the first week of November and we have until the end of November before the game closes, there may be enough time between those two points for a non-political story to gain some traction.

Of course this doesn't end on Nov 30th anyway.

You're right, the beatings will continue until morale improves... or until the company goes under, whichever comes first.

Barring any major catastrophe, or hanging chad, the news should be relatively quiet after the election. Might be the perfect time.

dwturducken

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #47 on: October 19, 2012, 04:25:47 AM »
I think we're all familiar with how we're not the typical group of gamers.

<pushes empty pizza box under the couch so mom doesn't see it>
I wouldn't use the word "replace," but there's no word for "take over for you and make everything better almost immediately," so we just say "replace."

Adrenalin

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #48 on: October 19, 2012, 04:30:42 AM »
Here's another angle to consider for your story:

NCSoft is not only doing themselves a disservice by their continued silence. I suggest that in the long run they are poisoning the well of the ENTIRE MMO industry.

When gamers really, truly as a group begin to understand the fact that at ANY time for ANY reason - even a NONSENSICAL reason - a game can be taken away - 

When it becomes crystal clear that your characters, your guild, all the work you put in - the achievements you have made, the bases (or housing or Starbases) you have worked so hard for -  that none of it is actually yours and that you don't own ANY of it.

If players of MMOs really, seriously, have the thin veil of illusion of "this is mine" ripped unceremoniously away and that it can go away at any time without so much as an apology or even get an answer to the question - "WHY?"

Well then. How many MMO players will think to themselves: "What is the point of paying into ANY MMO? For ANY reason?"
 
What is the backbone of real moneymaking in both subscription and free-to-play games?
 
Is it the casual gamer who plays the game for a couple of months and then moves on to the next shiny?
 
Or is it the amount of emotional investment of the long term committed customer that a game can retain?
 
NCSoft is poisoning the well of the latter in favor of the former. THAT is what they have to answer for. They will manage to lose not only the trust in THEIR brand, but the brand of the ENTIRE MMO industry once people figure it out.

Very, very nice. This, I do believe, would catch the attention of not only the players, but the independent design houses like Cryptic started CoH as. Who would want to be purchased by NCSoft, knowing that they could be fired with no notice at the drop of a hat and the sum of all their work summarily mothballed?

Reminds me of a comment by Valve's Gabe Newell. He said he'd rather see the company disintegrate than be swooped up by some big name company that would then wait for their employment agreements terminate. I believe he was speaking of Nexon in that context as well.

Adrenalin

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #49 on: October 19, 2012, 04:34:21 AM »
Yea that is the side of the line we would want to be on, the NCSoft option. Yet, we know that LOLSillyGAmers and people Nerdraging seem to catch more attention as it fits into the stereotypical view of people that dont play online games. It should be slanted as we the customer and an disagreeable buisness practice instead of "Gamers raging because company shuts down game!! Next up, is Dr. Phil on Gaming Addicts!"

 How did that negative stereotype get assigned to online gamers anyways? The one where we are either socially awkward pimple bespec. nerds that spend hours playing games, or jobless adults living in moms basement living off cold pizza and too lazy to do our own laundry? From the looks of it, I havent came across too many raging nerds or basement dwellers. From the looks of it we at least have an accomplished author, an IT worker, well several IT people, a government person, buisness people, a few law people.

Because when gaming was in it's infancy we WERE socially awkward nerds, and then we grew up. They just haven't gotten that memo yet. What they really need to realize is that nerds tend to run the world from the background, like the Wizard of Oz.  ;D


Adrenalin

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #51 on: October 19, 2012, 05:33:01 AM »
Speak for yourself.  8)

ROFLMAO! Okay, my bad, we got older. (Ooooh boy, older...  :'( )

Knightslayer

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #52 on: October 19, 2012, 07:47:27 AM »
Yea that is the side of the line we would want to be on, the NCSoft option. Yet, we know that LOLSillyGAmers and people Nerdraging seem to catch more attention as it fits into the stereotypical view of people that dont play online games. It should be slanted as we the customer and an disagreeable buisness practice instead of "Gamers raging because company shuts down game!! Next up, is Dr. Phil on Gaming Addicts!"

 How did that negative stereotype get assigned to online gamers anyways? The one where we are either socially awkward pimple bespec. nerds that spend hours playing games, or jobless adults living in moms basement living off cold pizza and too lazy to do our own laundry? From the looks of it, I havent came across too many raging nerds or basement dwellers. From the looks of it we at least have an accomplished author, an IT worker, well several IT people, a government person, buisness people, a few law people.
I came across THOSE types more on other MMO's than on CoX - most of the people I met on CoX that were unemployed were either for health reasons or because they couldn't find anything, despite actively looking for a job.
The stereo types -are- out there too though, people who can't even bothered to shower or do their laundry because they'd rather keep playing - but I'm fairly sure that for every gamer out there that falls into that category, there's two others who do the same with their TV addiction.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2012, 08:55:06 AM by Knightslayer »

Vulpy

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #53 on: October 19, 2012, 11:02:58 AM »
How did that negative stereotype get assigned to online gamers anyways? The one where we are either socially awkward pimple bespec. nerds that spend hours playing games, or jobless adults living in moms basement living off cold pizza and too lazy to do our own laundry?

Why is "gamer" a charged word? Why isn't "bookworm" or "sports fan"? What can we do about it? The folks at Extra Credits did a video on this topic some time ago. It's thought-provoking, if you have between five and ten minutes.

http://extra-credits.net/episodes/gamer/
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Rae

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #54 on: October 19, 2012, 02:07:42 PM »
OK. Here's my first attempt at something for the mainstream media. It was originally going to be for the gaming press, but while I was writing it, a more interesting angle hit me on something that might be more interesting to them, so I'm gonna get going one in a little bit.

I'd really appreciate help and comments on it. I've tried to keep it unbiased, but I'm not sure how successful I've been, and I'm dyscalculic, so it took me about an hour just to work out the figures I quoted. If there's anything wrong in there, especially in the business analysis bit, please correct me.

---

For eight years, the residents of Paragon City, the fictional setting of the massive online role-playing game, City of Heroes have been battling evildoers intent on destroying their world. So perhaps, when NC Soft announced on August 31 that they were pulling the plug on the game, they shouldn't have been surprised that the people behind the avatars swung into action to save their universe.

The huge campaign was launched, spear-headed by The Titan Network, a group of players dedicated to helping others make their most out of their time in City of Heroes, and it's sister game, City of Villains. The campaign quickly gained momentum, gaining the support of New York Times best-selling author Mercedes Lackey, Neil Gaiman, Lord of the Rings star Sean Austin, The Guild’s Felicia Day and comic strip Penny Arcade. 

Over 20,000 people signed a petition urging NC Soft to reconsider their decision to close the game. Players engaged in a letter writing campaign, raised the money to buy the developers dinner, sent capes and masks to NC Soft’s offices in Austin, Seattle and South Korea, and held a massive unity rally that was quick to gain the attention of the gaming press.

But after weeks of silence, NC Soft issued a response on October 2, when in a statement they claimed they had “exhausted all options including the selling of the studio and the rights to the City of Heroes intellectual property, but in the end, efforts to do so were not successful.”

Almost immediately, the City of Heroes community called foul. They said they knew of at least two investment groups  and one studio who had approached NC Soft with offers to buy the City of  Heroes franchise, who did not receive a response. They wanted to know why NC Soft believed it had 'exhausted all options' weeks before the game's scheduled closure on November 30.

We contacted NC Soft, asking for clarification on the statement they issued and giving them the opportunity to respond to claims by the Save COH campaign who took to forums, Facebook and Twitter wanting to know:

What attempts were made to sell Paragon Studios.
What attempts were made to sell the IP address, and how they were exhausted.
Why a number of potential investors who came forward to try and buy the rights, did not receive a response from NC Soft.
How NC exhausted all the options for the sale of the game, Paragon Studios or the Intellectual Property, given that the game is not due for closure until November 30.
Asking if NC Soft considered combining servers, putting the game in maintenance mode and keeping it running without further developments or updates, or allowing people to create their own, private servers.
Why NC Soft will not to publicly name a price that they would be willing to accept for either Paragon Studios, or City of Heroes itself.

NC Soft's public relations are handled by H&K Strategies, and it took four emails and six tweets to get them to acknowledge the request, and a response was eventually received two weeks later from Lincoln Davis, director of corporate communications at NC Soft's Seattle Office.

His response?

“I wanted to let you know that we will be declining your interview request as it relates to the sun setting of City of Heroes.”

Well. That clears that up, then.

Calling themselves the world's 'premier publisher of MMO games', the South-Korean based video company includes Lineage, Guild Wars and Aion in their porfolio. But more recently, they have picked up the unenviable moniker of MMO killer. Come December 1, the company will have been responsible for closing down a third of all MMOs that have ever been unplugged.

Their reputation also took a battering in 2008 after a lenghty court battle with Richard Garriot after the closure of Tabla Rasa, another MMO. Garriot claimed he was forced out of the company and was made to sell his 400,000 shares in NCSoft's stock, losing him millions of dollars and that the company is forged his resignation announcement.  On July 30, 2010, a jury in a Texas federal court awarded him US$28 million. NC Soft appealed the decision, but in October last year the Court of Appeal upheld the decision, with the final figure boosted to $32 million, after adding in interest and attorney's fees accrued during the appeal process.

NC Soft's refusal to say exactly why the game is being closed other than 'a reallignment of company focus' and remaining tight-lipped in the media has lead to their customers becoming increasingly more vocal and casting more suspicions on the companies motives and way of operating. 

Players argue that the game remained profitable and NCsoft's Investor Relations report for August 2012 show the game had a revue of $10m-12m a year, and that sales related to City of Heroes remained fairly constant.

The report shows that City of Heroes revenues are just a tiny fraction of NCSoft’s incomes when compared to the Asian powerhouses of Aion and Lineage 1 and 2, and that City of Heroes accounts for just two per cent of sales. Perhaps more tellingly, it shows that their pre-tax income was down 73 per cent year on year, to 18,934 South Korean Won – around US$17million.

While NC Soft refused to engage with their customers, or shed transparency on the attempts they claim to have made to prevent the closure of City of Heroes, Tony Vazquez, who has spear-headed the 'save'  campaign said:

“I strongly feel that NCsoft needs to seriously consider whether what it finds reasonable is, in fact, reasonable.

“When I read that NC Soft feels that it has exhausted all options for keeping City of Heroes active, I find that statement disingenuous at best.

“I feel that I have to point out that this profit from City of Heroes is part of what has made NCsoft's other titles such as Aion and Guild Wars 2 possible by funding their development.  Hopefully you can understand the anger and disappointment we felt when a mere three days after Guild Wars 2 launched--a game that our money funded—NC Soft in essence kicked us to the curb and has now repeatedly denied us the basic dignity of continuing to exist as a community.  While the money we have invested may not give us any legal standing from an ownership perspective, I believe that it does put an ethical onus on NC Soft to do whatever it can to allow the game to remain active.”

The City of Heroes franchise is scheduled for 'sunset' on November 30. You can find out more about the Save City of Heroes campaign at www.savecoh.com. To sign the petition calling for NC Soft to change their minds about the game's closure, visit tinyurl.com/savecoh.

--

Notes:
"City of Heroes" was the first MMORPG based not only on superheroes, but heavily on comics books, predating Sony Online "DC Universe Online" by nearly 7 years. The free downloadable updates for the game were known as "Issues," with actual titles that added new content to the popular MMO.

Paid expansions included "City of Villains" in 2005 and "City of Heroes: Going Rogue" in 2010. The lore and backstory of the game was so popular that there were many tie-in projects in other media, including novels, a collectible card game and -- not surprisingly -- a comic book series from publisher Blue King.

"City of Heroes" had over 120,000 subscribers in the US and Europe as of September 2008 and added a free-to-play subscription model in June 2011.

Of all of the MMOs that have been closed down, NC Soft are now responsible for killing a third of them – Auto Assault, Exteel, Dungeon Runners, Tabula Rasa and now City of Heroes, earning them the moniker of MMOKiller.

For more information on the Save City of Heroes Campaign, visit www.savecoh.com.

The full text of Tony Vazquez’s response to NC Soft can be found at  http://www.cohtitan.com/forum/index.php/topic,5467.0.html

For further reading, a spreadsheet of all media coverage of the Save City of Heroes campaign can be found at: http://tinyurl.com/8hhn5xv

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Kheprera

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #55 on: October 19, 2012, 03:19:51 PM »
As a proofreader by trade I noticed a number of mispellings, incorrect pluralization, and other things.  I can go over it later tonight, but the text is too long for me to work with on my phone.


downix

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #56 on: October 19, 2012, 03:34:11 PM »
City of Heroes was winning awards until only a short time ago as well.

It was also the first AAA rated MMORPG according to Cryptics website on it.

Other games such as DDO compare their systems against City of Heroes for game mechanics, it is considered the gold standard for many areas of MMO development such as aggro management, ability customization, class customization, costume customization, flexible playstyles....


Olantern

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #57 on: October 19, 2012, 03:55:08 PM »
Additional note for the "merchandise spawned" sentence: Comics were published by both Blue King and Top Cow (two separate series).

Rae

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #58 on: October 19, 2012, 05:13:16 PM »
Thanks Kheprera, that'd be appreciated.

And noted Downix and Olantern , thank you :)
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JaguarX

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Re: ...no comment. (For the journos.)
« Reply #59 on: October 19, 2012, 06:37:17 PM »
OK. Here's my first attempt at something for the mainstream media....

Alright this is good stuff for a gamer point of view. It details the plight, what we are trying to accomplish and everything. The gaming community will understand what's going on and the actua effect it has on a game community that has grown close over the years and some resulted in real life bonds that has crossed the virtual barrier.

When I have time later, I'm going to re read it but this time from the view point of someone who never ever played a single online game and maybe only heard of WoW, aka, the average audience of mainstream media. In a nutshell, re-read it on an even keel as possible without the personal feeling of the gaming world and pretending I have no idea how a gaming community works.