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No word from Perpetual. Vaporware?

Kareal

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POSTS: 499

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 1:09 am

I've been involved in MMOs since the early 90s both professionally and in terms of personal entertainment and I can say without a doubt that Perpetual Entertainment's "quietness" certainly is a bad publicity tactic.  

Patience is indeed a virtue and people who excercise patience are indeed one step above the human foodchain, but in terms of business marketing, I'm not so sure they're not practicing great marketing strategies.

Sure, they've been in a few interviews in the last year but the interviews have been practically cut and paste answers and their developer blogs hasn't been updated since Feb of 2006 (almost nine months now) much less their screenshots and media have been increadibly stale with one update every four to six months. An update meaning 1 picture or 1 concept art.

Also, they haven't hired a community manager in over 14 months, yet their position remains open to this day.  Community Managers are important because they serve as a liason between the consumer/fan and the Developers of the product.

If it wasn't for their first MMO coming out soon, I would def say this game is vaporware.  A relatively unknown company with a neat idea and permission to develope a game in which they'll never get around to.

Star Trek Online was publicly announced 4th quarter of 2004 and it is now 4th quarter of 2006 going into 2007 and all we have is 6 "fake" screenshots and a couple concept art pieces.  That's it.

I hear all the "have patience" or "they're so busy working on it, they haven't posted anything".  However, my professional side of myself tells me that something is wrong.

I hope I'm wrong but so far Im not too impress on the game's development.....kinda reminds me of a construction company who wins a bid to build an Elementary school (lowest bidder) only for them to take seven years to lay the foundation.

Two years in the computer entertainment department is TOO long.  If it takes you two years to run through intro code, then your product is just going to become severly outdated when it is released.

skrasis2

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POSTS: 62

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 1:37 am

I agree that maintaing  guietness is a bad idea.  Their reason is because they dont want to tell the community that they may impliment something in the game then change it later and have the fans get upset.  I think thats a poor excuse.  People are smart enough to know that games change during development.  We just want to be informed on the game whats going on with the development because we are interested and want to buy the game.

As for the Fake screen shots.  PE has said several times that they are in game screenshots.  Even pointing out the debugging info at the tops of the screen to prove their real.  I for one do think they are real and they look great.

My gut thinks they are behind schedule and just dont want to say anything.  

A consistant weekly even monthly blog or just a paragraph update from anyone about what there working on or doing for that period of time is not difficult at all, it could take all of 15 minutes.

How about releasing some more concept art.  I mean they are supposed to be working on actually building the levels at the moment so all the concept art should be outdated why not show it?  

To just stay quiet for another two years I think is just a sign they are not really interested in staying in touch with the fan community.

Skrasis  :logical:

Alan69

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POSTS: 121

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 11:01 am

obviously ou havnt kept upto date with whats going on  Those screens shots are a big part of them going silent.  I think they had big ideas that didnt work, so now they are just shutting their mouth and getting on with it.  These things take a while.  In their last interview they said they had people runnign around on a small space station and able to beam up to ships to do some crude combat.  Yes its annoying that we arnt getting new info but it will be that much more of a surprise when we do get it.  However i think this will cause a lot of problems in beta testing, with out really consulting the community on what they want from this game and what not, there is going to be a lot more complaints and stuff to fux/change during beta.  We will see, if Stargate Worlds is out before Star Trek Online, well yeah, something is wrong.

Xenesis

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POSTS: 1448

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 11:05 am

Give me a break. :eyesroll:

The screenshots are all real in game shots confirmed by the devs, if you're not even going to take their word on that, then save yourself some trouble and don't bother with the game anymore since you already think they're just lying to us and it's vaporware.

The game was announced in Sept 2004, but they didn't have a team in place for it at the time, this was when they aquired the licence for the game. 2005 they filled in staff postions, including hiring their lead Daron Stinnett, by the end of 2005 it looked like they had their game plans locked down with the christmas blog they had. Feb of this year we saw the interior shots of the Galaxy they're working on. July we saw the first shots of the Akira, which was confirmed by Daron it was real in game shots, and also confirmed that they have other ships flying around already.

They're making progress, and it looks like they could start beta in summer/late 2007 as they hoped with possibly another year in beta time to complete the game in 2008. So 2 years too long? They're only halfway through the development. Get it through your impatient head, it takes 4 YEARS to create a mmog, it's not a typical single player console game they're making.

And even if the game is released in Sept 2008 it would be 4 years since they announced the game, and that would still drop them into the average time it takes to make a mmog. Come back after 4 years and complain about being being too late then if you want. I don't care if they end up being behind schedule, that is better than hearing it's cancelled. If they need more time to complete the game, then take it, as long as it's completed is all that matters to me.

People need to suck up their fears and wait some more.
Most of the mmog's made came from unknown companies, including Funcom, Cryptic, CCP, Arenanet, Verant, Turbine. Others had some non mmog game experience before including Blizzard, SoE, Mythic, Westwood. PE is no different, they've hired experienced game devs, and people who have worked on Star Trek itself. Most mmog's have been made it through development, the only one I can think off that was cancelled during production was the one from Microsoft.

I'm glad they decided to stick with the media silence, because frankly hearing from one of you uninformed complainers every month is better than having to hear from a hundred of you every single day about this. Cripes I'm hearing the same damn complaints in another game right now, and it's already in beta, they expect things to be done and polished according to their own scheduling. People never learn :eyesroll:

Kareal

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 499

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 7:26 pm

Quote (Alan69 @ Oct. 26 2006, 11:01 am)
obviously ou havnt kept upto date with whats going on  Those screens shots are a big part of them going silent.  I think they had big ideas that didnt work, so now they are just shutting their mouth and getting on with it.  These things take a while.  In their last interview they said they had people runnign around on a small space station and able to beam up to ships to do some crude combat.  Yes its annoying that we arnt getting new info but it will be that much more of a surprise when we do get it.  However i think this will cause a lot of problems in beta testing, with out really consulting the community on what they want from this game and what not, there is going to be a lot more complaints and stuff to fux/change during beta.  We will see, if Stargate Worlds is out before Star Trek Online, well yeah, something is wrong.

Trust me, I know EXACTLY what is going on for the naysayers.  My husband was the very first one to interview Perpetual Entertainment way back before 99% of you even know what Perpetual Entertainment was.  Trust me I do keep up with the latest headlines with Perpetual....which was the exterior hull screenshots way back.

I said fake screenshots because until I see them in a non static movie file in their download section, then I will continue to just say they are artistic renditions of what they want.

Have companies done this before? Sure they have.  Three MMOs come to mind.  So sorry when I say the Screenshots are fake.  Are they capable of adding them ingame? They sure do and I hope they're real just as much as everyone of you guys do.  But, because of me being involved in MMOs in a professional manner, I don't believe screenshots anymore until I see them in a technological ingame demo.

Believe me I want Perpetual to succeed.  But with no communication with them (or even a blog every month) leaves me wondering.

Instead of being fanbois and throwing your pointy eared daggers at me while setting your phasors on Decimate, you may want to relook at the philosophy of fanboi ism.  They tear a game to pieces faster and easier than the game company's competitors because they'll agree over everything and anything the developers put out regardless of what it is.

Try to think on your own feet.  If a game was announced almost three years ago and a few screenshots were shown on their webpage with the latest blog being almost a year old, you would just assume they stopped doing it.  Right? Right.

As for code. They're done with the majority of the code.  I mean, if the screenshots are really and they really had a humanoid avatar in the ready room of a Galaxy Class starship, surely the coding has to be completed enough to get her there right?

Right?

Kareal

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 499

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 7:28 pm

Quote (skrasis2 @ Oct. 26 2006, 1:37 am)
To just stay quiet for another two years I think is just a sign they are not really interested in staying in touch with the fan community.

Skrasis  :logical:

exactly

Kareal

GROUP: Members

POSTS: 499

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 7:39 pm

Just to give you guys an idea of what Im talking about.

Warhammer Online: Age of reckoning.
Warhammer

Announced they were granted rights to the license for a MMO game in May 18, 2005.  My husband's good friend is the community manager there.  You can easily read this information on their page.  STO was announced in 4th quarter 2004 with a half dozen screenshots.

Also, Mythic currently employs only 14 artists with 7 Developers and 1 Community Manager.

Age of Conan
Age of Conan
This game was announced March of 2005.  About 4 months after the announcement of STO.  Game is already in closed beta.  Which typically means six to seven more months before completion.

I could go on but hopefully you can see my point.....and where I'm trying to get at

Also, Perpetualadmin (the liason for Perpetual and startrek.com hasn't posted in 14 months). Hmm

Aiten

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POSTS: 1040

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 7:59 pm

Thank you Kareal, I have not had the chance to laugh like that in a long time.
Fake screenshots, vapourware ... hehe, again thank you.

After 12 months of pre-dev ideas throwing, and 12 months now of actual development, (thats 2 years from 2004), I would say PE is doing very well, considering its size.
With a proven project due for release called 'Gods & Heroes' currently in beta, you can hardly call PE a small company with big aspirations, it has experience.
MMO's generally take between 3-5 years development time, and therefore PE is on course.  I have never heard of an MMO taking 2 years from scratch.  Battlefield2142 took that long, and it was a 'mod' for BF2, same with X3: Reunion - basically X2.5.

I must say, everything you said was purely opinions and TBH, almost written as if you wanted to provoke a strong response.

ADDED:
Quote
Also, Perpetualadmin (the liason for Perpetual and startrek.com hasn't posted in 14 months). Hmm

I used to find this an annoyance, but I soon realised that the team do often post on fansites and get involved with the community.

NinjaVitis

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POSTS: 23

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 9:01 pm

I'd like to see more screenshots.

Xenesis

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POSTS: 1448

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 10:57 pm

All screenshots are fake until you see a movie? Gee, most games don't even release movies until they get to the later beta stage, so games are vaporware to you until they're midway through beta?

Warhammer and Conan are being made by companies that have already worked and released other mmog's, already have their own communities running for years, they had their dev teams in place from day one. Mythic postponed Imperator and switched over to Warhammer when they got it. Conan is being made by Funcom which also made Anarchy online. PE had to build their team for STO after they got the license, which they did during 2005, they've also had to work on GnH all the while.

Perpetual admin hasn't posted because I believe Mitch moved to GnH, Glen and Daron posted under their own names thereafter.

I'm being patient with PE. I know the development cycle of a mmog, so forgive me if it seems like I'm being agreeable and accepting of everything from PE thus far, but no reason to complain to them if so far they seem to be following the same route every other mmog has to this point. If that makes me a fanboi so be it, I'd rather be a fanboi than some uninformed poster coming in every month complaining to PE about why there's no information, why isn't the game done it's already been 2 years, when the answers to those complaints have been answered many times over the last year.

I don't see a need to start calling the devs liars and the game vaporware just yet, maybe later if they miss their beta date and we're still are in a media blackout, then I can start to wonder. Till then I'll cut them a lot of slack, go along with their plans for a media blackout, cause really we have no choice they won't change, and just wait.

And as for coding being is done, lol. If it was done we won't be here talking about the game, we'd be playing it.
They just started on coding, that won't be done till the game is released.

Aiten

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POSTS: 1040

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 11:33 pm

Actually Xenesis, I am fully expecting the Beta date to be missed ...
If this is indeed going to follow the typical development rule, there will be something that will hold back Beta - like someone using the Master Beta disk as a coffee matt or something.
If it hits 2009 without a trace, then I may start to wonder, but the chances of that happening are about as likely as me winning Fridays (Pounds)?75,000,000 on the EuroMillions.
But we do agree that this is not just a dream.

Back to Kareal

ST:O really cannot be called vapourware for following a development cycle.

Ellessar

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POSTS: 1848

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 11:34 pm

I don't think we are quite at the stage where we should have the fears of Vaporware.  I think you are jumping the gun with that one.  

I share the concern that PE is being too quite and tight lipped.  I chock that one up to them biting off more than they could chew.  I would imagine that most MMOs tend to start off far more grand in concept than they end up being in practice, but I have a feeling this was even worse in the case of STO.  When it comes to the subject of Star Trek there is simply so much out there.  To attempt to make a fun and enjoyable MMO out of it while still capturing the essence of Trek is a difficult task.  At this point I would imagine they are trying to avoid setting the hopes of the fans too high, which is exactly what they did when they announced the game without any real plan in mind.  So they remain silent, which I can understand, but again I think they are taking that silence a bit too far.  It wouldn't hurt for them to throw a few more bones our way.

Xenesis

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POSTS: 1448

Report this Oct. 26 2006, 11:41 pm

Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if the date was missed, a lot of other games have missed their beta dates too. It happens, not everything turns out as expected. They did say they would start feeding more info before beta, if neither info or beta is showing by the end of 2007 then we can wonder. But yeah typical dev cycle so far, games don't usually feed much till beta is around.

Kareal

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POSTS: 499

Report this Oct. 27 2006, 1:01 am

Quote (Aiten @ Oct. 26 2006, 7:59 pm)
ADDED:
Quote
My husband was the very first one to interview Perpetual Entertainment way back before 99% of you even know what Perpetual Entertainment was.  Trust me I do keep up with the latest headlines with Perpetual....which was the exterior hull screenshots way back.


Can we see this interview.  Assuming your husband is in the media, and in the know about gaming, he may be able to help you understand a few issues that you missed.

1: Games, esp MMo's, to build from the ground up take a lot longer than 2 years.
2: Why would investors let a $10,000,000 liscense go to waste?
3:There are a number of ways to market a product, and silence happens to be one of the best methods.  No hype, no disappointment, massive lauch, people rush with tons of excitement.

Interview link

Feel free to email him if you wish.  His screen name is Enigma and can be emailed at Enigma@mmorpg.com.

Also, feel free look at Enigma's user profile to match his name with that of the interview.  In terms of what company I work for, I will not say. But I'll give you a hint.  It's just as small as Perpetual Entertainment and we've had a successful MMO going on for over 3 and a half years now.  I wont tell you where I work simply because I don't want people to think I'm against this game.

I'm merely trying to get PE off their butts and show me I'm lying.

Also, about your comparison to MMOs and other games. I completely agree with you however, the examples I provided are MMOs with the same limited developer availability.

Ok...if they want to take their own sweet time, then that's their own money and their own thing.  However, it doesnt hurt to show us they are at least doing something.

No blog, no update, nothing.  Not even a forum update in over a  year here.  So...im just stating what I'm seeing.

Also, for the record I do not believe those scrrenshots are "fake"  but I will not believe they are "actual ingame shots" until I see a moving media of someone walking down those corridors.

Trust me...I don't hate the game. Just merely stating my viewpoints and my ideas.

Kareal

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POSTS: 499

Report this Oct. 27 2006, 1:06 am

Quote (Xenesis @ Oct. 26 2006, 10:57 pm)
All screenshots are fake until you see a movie?

Pretty much yes.  The last two MMOs that were released this year tricked their community base by providing lavish landscape shots and then said their ingame are actual screenshots only for the players to log in and say WTF as people can clearly see screenshots have been "airbrushed"

I understand graphic cards vary but with my card I can honestly tell you, two MMos "airbrushed" their screenshots for the sake of pre game hype.

Nothing against PE. But yes, I will not believe they are real operational, working screenshots until I see an avatar walking down the hall of a starhsip and walk into the readyroom.  I've been around the entertainment industry far too long to just take a few year old screenshots and based research and development on those few precious tidbits of information.

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