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Theryon Wars: Another Planet Partner bites the dust ?

Discussion in 'Entropia News' started by EntropiaPlanets, Jul 24, 2013.

  1.  
    admin

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    There's tons of publishing options available to push your small game to. Steam is an obvious one, and doing things properly means you will also have the option to push your game to different platforms (consoles/mobile, etc.). The upcoming PS4 as well as the XBone (XBox One) are heavily pushing for self-publishing for indies on their new consoles.

    Signing up with MA greatly reduces your options, as your work will only be available on whatever MA decides it can run on. After 10 years of "proving" their model, MA managed to have a player-base that's so small that the MA corporate numbers for the last few years have shown nothing but red.

    At the beginning of the year, there were less than 25k active accounts in EU. A lot of money, time, and effort has been spent on advertising, and I somehow do not see any major improvements.

    The platform simply fails to "stick" with users, for whatever reason. New graphics, missions, vehicles, achievements, and pretty much everything else MA tried failed to make a large lasting impact.

    That really something you'd want to sign yourself up for? Especially knowing that he contract you'll sign is ridiculously one-sides, and basically gives MA the ability to shit all over you and your project while they at the same time compete with you (Calypso is *still* run by a MA daughter company, and Jan's son Kim is responsible for design/development of it)?
     
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  2.  
    Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

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    Admin... I'd like to see some citations or evidence for these claims if possible?
     
  3.  
    admin

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    Which claims are you talking about?

    The 25k active users? That was brought up during a PP meeting earlier this year. I cannot reveal how this reached my ear (It s *not* Lykke; she did not attend that meeting, and if she did, or would attend such meetings, she'd not reveal information released in it to me) for obvious reasons.

    Edit: Actually, the number quoted at the meeting was 18k active accounts, where an active account is defined as an account with activity in the last 30 days (activity meaning anything where PEDs are transfered) if my memory serves me well. I upped the number somewhat to account for the ad sense campaign MA is running.

    The contract being ridiculously one-sided? Try and obtain a copy of a contract, and read it yourself. It essentially means the PP places themselves at the mercy of MA, depending on MA to implement the systems designed by the PP, and hoping that they don't fuck up the design to such an extent it becomes unusable. At the same time, MA will sneak in every possible fee they can and deduct it from the PP payout, and will leave the PP to ward off any results of MA fucking up a release.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013
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  4.  
    Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

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    Well those were the things I was talking about more or less... We'll just have to take your word for it. Don't worry I was just interested to know if there was something we could look at. I don't know how I'd get to see a PP contract either. There isn't much info on the PP pages of the EU site
     
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    admin

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    Just the fact that a PP contract is under NDA should show these contracts are odd beasts.
     
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    Tesla Coil

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    Must be honest I know to little of the PP system and what more kinds of profits are attached to it besides players their losses.

    My guess is that the more information you gather the more reluctant you get in becoming a planet partner. Being it a great concept it has no good and lasting foundation in my opinion. That is from a players perspective.

    Also not sure if more people stop depositing and finally playing what will happen with the loot in the game as it seems connected to each other. (Development and maintenance costs and potential return to players.)
     
  7.  
    Tass

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    active account = performing at least one microtransaction whithin the last 30 days

    Which means a 10 minutes old player firing a given weapon once in a tutorial area such as Crystalline Cavern would be counted as an active account.

    Of course we could be completely wrong here but maybe someone can correct/confirm? Jan (Welter Timkrans)? David (Simmonds)?
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013
  8.  
    Airboy

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    Interesting to have some fact about this, the numbers is inline with what have thought myself, maybe a bit lower.

    Are not "don't disclose agreement" pretty much standard in many bigger business contract between companies? So nothing wrong about it.

    Starting to feel that this forum is really biased against MA and pro-planet partners, with special contacts with planet partners, ex-employes and promoting of other games besides EU. Yeah I know, maybe I'm bias pro-MA :laugh:
     
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  9.  
    Tass

    Tass Administrator

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    Quoting you but not neccessarily addressing you specifically.

    There's definitely no contract or any kind of agreement with anyone.

    The Project Ion article is the first EP created frontpage article dealing with another game in EP's history. The option to discuss other games besides EU is imo a plus.

    And over the years EP has sure done a lot to promote EU in various ways. Certainly EP staff has accumulated 1000+ hours of promoting EU.

    People are opinionated or even biased and that's good. A forum is ultimately made by the people voicing their opinions, no matter how ridiculous, biased, dumb or whatever other people may find them. A broad variety of opinions is what EP should promote. Imo ;) So please keep going and point out facts where they are missing.

    You sure find a significant amount of posts critisizing MindArk but that might have reasons, for example:
    • not every place allows people to critisize so they come to EP to do it while keeping their non-critisizing posts elsewhere, which is a little unfortunate
    • from the beginning EntropiaPlanets was embracing the idea of multiple themed planets so there still might be more of a planets focus than a platform focus remaining
    • MindArk might indeed suck, people might be given a glimpse of inside info from planet partner & MA (ex-) employees and other insiders from time to time which suggests blatant injustice, nepotism, broken promises and a misarable performance from MA's side, so from time to time there might be incidents causing them not being able to stand it (injustice, favouritism, broken promises, ...) any longer and they might vent a little bit...
    However, most important, like said: A forum is the people voicing their opinions, bring them. If you have suggestions how EP can be improved or what EP should focus on please let us know (http://www.entropiaplanets.com/forums/about-entropiaplanets.2/).
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013
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  10.  
    Xandra

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    Hi,
    It might look this way, but that look might be caused, too, by the politics of MA. I haven't read much here from the side of MA yet - and I'm very sure VF would be more than happy to give them an own sub-forum, a weekly interview and a daily blog spot!

    Check where MA communicates (if at all): It's PCF, sometimes EF, elsewhere? Nada.
    If you want to know in time what mechanics might change, what MA is aiming for, what they are working at, you NEED to read PCF. This is where any info can be found, if there's such rare beast at all.

    MA does (nearly) all communications with it's participants either in the forum of their own planet, or in a forum belonging (as well) to an Uber strongly attached to this planet.
    • Maybe this forum, the IMHO largest all-EU one, looks this "biased against MA and pro-planet partners" only because the planet partners talk to it, and MA does not?
    • Maybe this forum looks "biased against MA and pro-planet partners" only because it's one not owned, moderated and censored by a Calypsonian pet of MA?
    • And maybe, because only here it's possible to discuss MA's decisions and strategies without getting banned in a hurry?
    Have fun!
     
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  11.  
    Tesla Coil

    Tesla Coil

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    Funny, winner and agree! I young at this forum but loving it already! :beerchug:
     
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  12.  
    Tass

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    Let me add:

    If someone has an appropriate (quality, lengths, actuality) fact-based pro-MA pro-Caly pro-whatever article please bring it. We'll put it on the frontpage and promote it as good as we can.

    Personally I'd be happy to read an extensive review of the Cyclops Depths instance, missions, creatures, ...
     
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  13.  
    RAZER

    RAZER Custom title ... uh ...

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    I think you hit the nail right on the head there. We as EP and I think all of the staff in person have been trying to contact MA for years now and as far as I know the only communication we got from them was telling us we were wrong about the fall-down of Theryon Wars about 1,5 years ago (link).

    We are more then willing to work with MindArk the same way we do with the PP's, but because of their policy to not work with anyone other then Jason Peterson there is hardly any news to publish about them and even less positive news (makes you wonder if he might have one of those special contract Tass was mistakenly talking about).


    Tass, Airboy said contact not contRact


    In which case he is right, we have contacts with the PP's, not sure if they are that special though, unless he means the contact between Lykke and Peter, which is very special I'm sure ;)
     
  14.  
    Airboy

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    And here! Information directly from MA! ;)
    http://www.entropiauniverse.com/bulletin/buzz/

    State of the universe and similar information that gives some hints about the future, also the annual report gives some information about the near future.

    I can understand that MA picks only one-two official or semi-official forums to communicate with the players. It would take a lot of their time if they would be forced to constantly monitor many different player created forums.

    But I also agree the communication can get better from MA. The information flow goes very much up and down from them, can go weeks with little activity in the forums from their part. My guess is that it's a problem with the information flow coming from a few individuals in MA with the task to communicate with the players, and when this individuals don't have the time, are on breaks, sick leave, reorganizations or other things that hinders their ability to communicate with the players, no one are available do replace them.
     
  15.  
    McCormick

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    Feels strange to SEE that Jan was choosing to get rid of Marco & His creative friends as well. But ya, Jason got the PEDs. ;p

    And do not forget about Bridge Investment (Fred Rosenthal) and oldtime investor Benny Iggland here. ;)

    And all the awesome people that now and then joined the board, like Steven Shannon (General Motors), Michael Zolotas (Deutsche Bank England / Central bank of Nigeria) and alltime high Klas Moreau ((Sony) Ericcson) that was recruited as Techical Director.
    His goal for 2013: "Double the amount of Entropia Players".
    Would that be 36.000 or 2 million then ? ;)

    And btw. did anyone hear anything about "Milky" again ? (Mentor of Silverfox)
    All I remember he was a surfer boy from miami. (?)


    I would also really prefer to just play/enjoy this "game", without having to steady complain about exploits, bugs, game mechanics, broken promises, lies etc.! But this complaining has also become a huge part of this "game". Since day 1. :p

    You cant please everybody anyway (in here) :p
    Sure, such things belong to nearly every MMO or offline game.
    But here, things are handled a little sloOOoooOOoooOoweeer.
    (or not handled at all)

    And then there are the things outside of this game.
    (big special, compared to other MMOs) lol ;p

    No other MMO has to offer that much (negative) behind-the-scenes / publicity stuff / stories like this one. But you actually have to open your eyes for it. Or just ignore it.

    And if you dont look for them, or ignore it...you will for sure think, that many of us are just anti-MA. :)
     
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    RAZER

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    Yeah we know about the buzz and the annual report, but it has happened more then once that Kim posted important info about EU on the Calypso forum and we, the players that do not go there, had to find out by word of mouth.

    Sure they can not post their stuff on all the forums, but why post Entropia Universe related stuff ONLY on the forum of one PP (Calypso) I know it is MA's forum, but what about the players on other players that do not go to PCF?

    It seems that MA has only 2 options in communications most of the time, trough PCF or not at all. I mean, why not use Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or a newsletter for EU related stuff so everyone is able to see it. Isn't it the job of the community manager to spread the news. Oh wait there is none at MA, because we, the community are not MA's customers, the PP's are.

    The communication has become somewhat better compared to the past, but if you ask hard questions on the forum, you either get ignored, banned or the post removed, where other PP have the balls to do interviews or even talk to us on live radio.
     
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    admin

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    Sure. My company (Unity) has an NDA prohibiting alpha testers (a select group of customers invited to test-check releases before they go-live) from disclosing the specific features in these builds.

    When I was a consultant, I had to sign numerous NDAs for customers when I touched sensitive data (which was a lot, considering my line of work was database administration/consultancy and business intelligence).

    An NDA typically is meant to ensure that the other party will not disclose any trade secrets, or sensitive customer data (in my case, financial or health records, mostly).

    But an NDA prohibiting you to discuss a contract? I never ever heard of that. There must be some mighty trade secrets in there, as apparently even people who never signed the contract are apparently not allowed to disclose the contents.
     
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    Airboy

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    Well they use Twitter at least and they have news letters, but the news letter maybe is for Calypso, not totally sure.
     
  19.  
    Airboy

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    I believe many companies have agreements not do discuss the details of a contract. I think big companies as Apple, Google and such have a lot of business contract with information and deals they don't want the other part disclose to a third part.
     
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    MindStar9

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    With regard to the newsletters ... Calypso's CEO (Sven Sandberg - also on MA Board of Directors last I knew) approached me about using some of my articles at MSM as EU newsletters. He was particularly interested in the article I did on the update of the crafting system, including the photos. He said that nothing would need to be changed because my writing was appreciated, and it made him feel good.

    The deal was supposed to be (according to Sven), that any article of mine at MSM that was to be used as an EU newsletter would be signed off on by both myself and David Simmonds, and MSM would get credit. Well, that didn't happen when they used my crafting system update article from MSM as their first newsletter.

    Nobody signed off on anything, and they changed a word that made no sense. They also wrote at the bottom of the newsletter that MSM "contributed" to the newsletter with a link to MSM.

    Not sure any other newsletters have gone out - I haven't gotten any more, but I wouldn't allow them to use any more of my writing anyway.
     
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