Mike Laidlaw made a statement at the BioWare Dragon Age panel on Friday that was very true; We get off the internet and realize there are still people out there that want to connect in real life too.
Yup. Hence why things like PAX East happen. We need a spot to get together and celebrate our love of all things game. It’s great to make those face to face connections with people.
Laidlaw also said that when he gets off the internet, he realizes that there are people that really do love the products they put out, and though they may have criticism about what they did, they still have an appreciation for what it was.
The thing I realized in walking around PAX with JayRain yesterday after that panel was that haters gonna hate. We saw people walking around with signs protesting the end of Mass Effect 3, and a few other games that had flaws, in their opinion. Now, none of the games that were being protested are ones that I have played, so I can’t speak to my opinion on any of them. But what I can say is that there are definitely people that appreciate BioWare for what they have done, and wish them well for the future.
So, after giving some thought to what Laidlaw said, I realized that there are people that are jerks online, just because they’re mad about what happened. And when they get off the internet? They’re still going to be jerks about it. But really? There’s a big difference between telling a million dollar company “You guys suck because this didn’t go the way I wanted it to!” and “Here’s what I thought was lacking and this is what I think would rectify it.” Constructive criticism is much more helpful than just shouting about the ending.
Already, there has been a post about the BioWare Dragon Age panel on Game Trailer and the people who are angry about ME3 and DAII are coming out of the woodwork, again. I thought the article was very fair, considering I was at the panel, and it was accurate to what was said in the panel. A very unbiased writing. But people launched right of saying things like “Decisions that matter? Oh, you mean you get to make choices in the game that seem to matter up until the end choice for red, green, or blue death? F— you Bioware.”
Seriously? How is that helpful to them. Okay. So. Tell them what you want them to do about it? They don’t live in a vacuum people. Laidlaw, David Gaider, et. al. are all very approachable people. They’re not some scary guys sitting in big chairs in an office far away. They WANT to receive your input. They wouldn’t come to these panels if they didn’t. They’re normal, every day people. (I even said to JayRain that David Gaider looks like a perpetual 6 year old with a goatee.)
So, I know this blog post isn’t going to change how people react to companies like BioWare. But it gives me the chance to put my thoughts out there about it. Because, regardless of whether you believe it or not, they DO care about what their fans have to say, and they WILL do something about it. Every new game is going to have some issues with it. Rarely does a company get it “right” on the first try.
Prime example: Wizards of the Coast and D&D4. Now, I play 3.5, but that doesn’t mean it’s flawless. If it had been flawless the first time round, I doubt there would be websites upon websites and books upon books about how to play it and information on monsters and… and… and…
I doubt there would have been a D&D 4. Hell, if they’d nailedt it on the first try, TSR probably would have sold more than 1,000 copies in 1974, and there definitely wouldn’t be a 3.5 edition either. WotC probably wouldn’t have announced a 5th edition in January of this year either.
So, is some of what BioWare said “Cover Your Ass” statement? Possibly. Are they trying to do right by their fans? I think so. Next time you go to leave a comment on a page, take it down a few notches and put in your two cents about what would have worked better. They just might listen to that.