Friday, October 24, 2008

CCP Zulupark - A Good move forward... finally!

What does 5 Dev Blogs, New Expansion, a Nerf, and a Dev Chat have in common?  Well, and the answer is: CCP Zulupark

By the way, I have found the reason why I got banned from the forums, I shall discuss that later. What is imperative right now is to do the right thing and encourage CCP on the road to redemption. We have all heard already about the infamous thread (participation in which had caused my ignoble downfall from the forums) or, the new Live Dev Blog: Introducing CCP T0rfifrans - well what do you know it did not go so well.  But, I am not gleeful, I am actually quite impressed with how CCP Zulupark handled the disaffected masses.  

Since everyone was already upset about the upcoming nerfs, and combine it with the recent nerf to the "Unsubscribed Training" aka "Ghost Training, tensions were running high, and the community was getting really angry about the uninformative blog. Following that, CCP Zulupark announced that he will answer every single question from the EVE community, asked on forums between Friday the 24th of October, and Midnight, Sunday the 26th of October. The announcement by CCP Wrangler can be found here, and the actual "answers" thread can be found here.  By the way, I did get a chance to ask my questions, with my trusted sikrit [sic] ALT - and no, you can't know who it is, the character is in case I get banned forever, and actually need to ask a question! 

This is what I call courage, and dedication. This is what reminds me of what this game was like 5, nay, 3 years ago! This is how CCP used to handle things. They would go out of their way to answer player questions - they would never insulate themselves from the community, well in the past anyway. 

Now, I am very much impressed, and I think that it might actually start healing up allot of wounds within the community which were caused by years of neglect, and half-truths, and outright and deliberate misinformation. 

Question is, will this practice continue? Will the people who are in charge of CCP realize that it might be the greatest opportunity they have ever had to win their community back, and over again. Will the developers, who would come following in CCP Zulupark's footsteps find themselves bored, inattentive, and bothered by the questions? Will they find strength to answer them honestly? Only time will tell. 

Until then, I want to congratulate CCP Zulupark on finding courage, and showing dedication I have not seen in many years.  Thus far CCP Zulupark has made a personal decision to do this, and I encourage CCP, if any CCP Member ever reads this, to take his example, and turn it into a monthly or bi-weekly practice. All cutsie wootsie "Live" and mostly uninformative dev blogs aside, this is how things should be done. Q & A Session for 48 Hours, we ask questions, then a Developer comes back and answers them. 

Perhaps CCP Wrangler should take up that responsibility, he is the community manager, he should take the questions and forward them to the appropriate people, and then post the answers, if the other guys are too busy. This is what Kieron used to do. 

Developers need to come to the forums, and answer questions, allot of questions, alway answer questions. Do not hide behind a paragraph in a blog that tells us nothing, be open, be accessible, be approachable, come down from the Hig-Tech Ivory Tower and talk to us.  

A good start CCP, or rather CCP Zulupark, my hat is off to you sir. 

I now know why I got banned by CCP

As many of you are aware, by now, I have been banned by CCP from posting on forums for 14 days due to the "personal attack" on CCP T0rfifrans. My so-called "attack" can be seen here:

I believe that the ban happened due to this:

As you can clearly see that CCP T0rfi has experienced some degree of personal emergency, and thus was unable to attend. 

Due to misguided personal, or corporate loyalty, a CCP Moderator took it upon themselves to "defend" CCP Torfi from the "evil" Jinx Barker, who so callously suggested that he be fired, or that CCP further cover up the muddling and miscommunication by checking him into rehab, at the time of his "personal need." 

First, notice the time stamps on the messages, this further reinforces my theory that CCP Moderators went on the offensive without actually thinking through what their actions will entail. My question is why did they not tell us initially as to why CCP Torfi was not attending, thus fueling speculation and further suggestions of the cover up? 

I think my, admittedly edgy, comment has hit close to home with CCP. The suggestion that CCP use some sort of "medical emergency" to remove CCP T0rfi from the participation in the Live Dev Blog just happens to be true, granted it is not a "rehab" story, but any intelligent person can see the correlation between the comment, and the actual event. 

I have already mentioned the self-censure of the expletive, and that I made sure I have stayed within the forum rules. 
The comment above has nothing to do with CCP T0rfi personally, it simply states a hope that he be dismissed from CCP for his dismal handling of the "Ghost Training" debacle, and then suggest, very much "tongue-in-cheek" manner that CCP will attempt to cover everything up ala "US Senators caught drunk driving" or "US Senators caught with underage boys" - where they promptly go into rehab to "deal with their problems" - thus trying to elicit public sympathy, or at least minimize calls for investigation, because: "poor man, he has to go to the rehab, we must feel bad for him, it is the alcohol, that is what caused the problem, he is not really a pervert, or a drunk!"

Whatever the case maybe, the unexpected medical emergency of CCP Torfifrans has certainly put a dampener on the whole thing. We as human beings can not help but feel affinity and sympathy for someone who is going through a tough time, of whatever sort. This in turn played right into the hands of CCP, and allowed them to go on the offensive, because, god forbid anyone hurt CCP T0rfi's feeling at such a time - EVEN IF THEY WERE NOT AWARE OF IT (this is where the time stamp on the messages comes in) - such an evil person Jinx Barker is, suggesting CCP Torfi be fired, and or that CCP would stoop so low as to claim some sort of medical issue! 

Bottom Line: 
Anonymous CCP Developer or CCP Moderator has taken a very personal approach, and had a knee-jerk reaction when my post appeared on the second page of that thread. They have chosen, in the fit of smug self-righteous fury to punish me as best they could for my vocal opposition to the cancelation of the "Unsubbed Training" aka "Ghost Training."  This was a ban of opportunity, nothing more, nothing less. They have found a way to remove me from the forums, and thus remove any and all "non-meme" arguments I might present in defense of the player base. The hope is, that by the time I return things would have quieted down, and dust settled, and the "New CCP Order" would be established. 

To all EVE players, I urge you to argue and fight for your game. Do not allow some misguided and greedy elements within the CCP to shut you up, or to force you out. They, the developers, are just like us, yes, we can be petty, and childish, and slightly ornery, but when the time comes, we should also do the right thing.  

When you are a developer of the game like EVE Online, and have to deal with the large and diverse community, one must put aside infantile tendencies, one must put aside personal smugness, one must think and act like an adult, which did not happen, unfortunately, in this case. 

Best Regards,