Tuesday, 21 September 2010

A Little Bed Time Story

Just because nothing can ever be done to please a gaming community that looks like it's mostly made up of people who had little to no real life working experience.

So here's a little Nasreddin Hodja tale.

One day Nasreddin Hodja and his young son were on their way to the market. The Hodja was riding his donkey and his son was walking beside him. As they travelled such, they heard a couple of villagers who happened to be passing by, speak disapprovingly about them.

`Look at our Hodja Effendi,' one said to the other, `he is comfortably riding on his donkey and letting his little boy walk along. Shame on the Hodja for making the boy suffer like that!' When Nasreddin Hodja heard this, he wanted to rectify what was perceived as his selfishness. He put his son on the donkey and he started to walk beside. Shortly after, they met another couple of villagers.

`Look at the Hodja and his son!' they said, `These are the times we are living in. A young boy is riding on the donkey and his poor old father is sweating to keep the pace. Today's children have no respect for their parents.' Nasreddin Hodja found some reason in this comment and thought of another remedy. They both got off of the donkey and started to walk beside it. A little while later, a group of villagers, also going to the market, approached the procession of the Hodja, the son and the donkey, all walking one after the other.

`This Hodja Effendi and his son have no minds, whatsoever.' they whispered amongst themselves, `They are both beating on their feet and the donkey is strolling along. Don't these people know what a donkey is for?' Hodja heard this and thought they had a point. The solution was clear. Both he and his son sat on the donkey. As they continued their trip this way, thinking that they have finally complied with all the opinions of their fellow villagers, they met another of their acquaintances. He was not very happy to see both the Hodja and the boy on a scrawny donkey.

`Hodja Effendi,' he yelled, `don't you know no mercy? How is this poor little animal supposed to carry two people? The donkey is also Allah's creation, have some pity.' Nasreddin Hodja agreed with this last remark as well. What were they to do? He shouldered the front body of the donkey and his son took on the back part, and they carried the donkey to the market place.

Monday, 20 September 2010

G1 skill xp and macro-ing

As you might and might not have known, the skill xp on the Acclaim servers, low as it might have seemed, was actually tweaked to a 4xp. If you remember, after server restarts, skill xp was nutty slow - THAT was the actual skill xp of the server. With G1 taking over, skill xp is back to it's original state, that is 4 times as low as Acclaim players are used to having it.

That being said, I can fully understand that people are not very inclined to play buffers. What I have absolutely no understanding for is using macros to get around it - having some bot "press keys" for you while you go about your business otherwheres and coming back to leveled skills. As far as things go, that is called cheating. Cheating is "fooling the system" because you're not willing and able to play by the rules and loser enough not to be able to take the blow to your self esteem - that is admitting you can't make it the straight way.

So just a little antisocial word of caution here: by all means, if admitting you're a failure at playing the game as it is set up to be played would seriously damage your psyche - by all means, go ahead and macro. However, keep yourself away from Squeak-ers. There are few types of people I despise more than cheaters.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Still Restless

Well, the rodents are back and squeaking.

I have refrained posting for a long while. I didn't want to rant about the ranters and all they hysterical people who want their chars back, this minute and a 100xp compensation and free BE for all forever. I got used to the idea that we most likely won't get our old chars back and if we do, it will take ages. It's only in Ally McBeal that legal battles last the 30 minutes of an episode.

With that in mind, the rodents grinded the weekend away. So, on the 20th of September, shortly after midnight, Restless was reborn. Some of us changed names, some changed roles, some changed clans. Some kept everything, some changed everything. But we're all still restless. And squeaking.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

9D is returning

Today's update contained some long-awaited news and some expected news.

The long-awaited news are that 9d will be back up tomorrow at the estimated time of 1am GMT.
You can read Hyperion's post here.

The expected news are that they don't have the DB yet, and it seems that it will be a long time before even we can hope for them. Hyperion pointed out that the DB issue is now indy21's problem, and it seems that indy will need to take legal action against Disney in order to get our info. I somehow would place my bet on the big fish, but hope dies last.

We'll see how smoothly and bug-free the servers will start (small chances there). Maybe some of us should stay up just in order to re-create our characters and at least get the names reserved.
For Restless members, refer to our facebook group and talk to the people who will stay up and make their chars. Maybe we can work something out, and after a couple of hours we'll be able to recreate the league.

More news about the league here and on the FB group. We'll keep you posted.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Claim your character !

Easy. Go here: https://www.gamersfirst.com/welcome/9Dragons/9d_characters.php and claim your fill the forms with your character data. 

That doesn't mean we will have the chars when the game will be up.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Letters - part 3

New one, from CFO of Indy21

Dear Fellow Dragons,

I am Yongnam, Partner and CFO at Indy21.

I believe that this is the first time that I, on behalf of Indy21, am talking to the community directly. First off, thank you all very much for having been the biggest supporters of 9Dragons. You have always been with us through our ups and downs.

Although there have been many times that I wanted to communicate with you directly, especially to show my gratitude, we chose to let our previous publisher take care of the direct contact with you, due to a contractual obligations.

However, the series of events that happened recently has made me want to step up and initiate this communication to provide you all with our perspectives and thoughts on the current situation.

On August 26, I was shocked and disappointed by the way business was conducted by reputable companies like Playdom and Disney. We are operating in the business in which, I believe, if there are any disputes, we try to resolve the issues in congenial terms between companies by putting our customers interests first, not by holding our loyal community members hostage.

I believe, whether you are Western-based or Eastern-based, that is just a simple rule of thumb in the industry that we are in.

We had known that 9Dragons was to be transitioned to our new friends at GamersFirst and were promised by our former publisher that they would support a smooth and friendly transition of all player accounts. We had already inked our agreement with GamersFirst and had started working together to begin this transition, cooperating fully with Acclaim and taking them for their word. However, when the plug was pulled, we, along with the rest of you, were left completely in shock. We were not given the promised notice; the game database, which we required to recreate your characters and accounts for the upcoming re-launch of the game, was not transferred. What is most hurtful and saddening was that even in the last few hours of service, you were not informed of what was going on with the game.

SO, where do we stand now? We have a steep challenge ahead of us and here are our immediate priorities:

1. Restart 9Dragons immediately! We are working tirelessly with our friends at GamersFirst to re-launch 9Dragons as soon as humanly possible.

With little or no sleep in the last week both our teams are working around the clock to re-launch the game. In our estimate we are about less than ten days away from restarting service.

2. Recreate ALL player characters and accounts: It is my promise along with the rest of my team that we will move mountains to make this happen. We are consulting legal counsel and negotiating with stakeholders at Disney to find an amicable solution. We are also working with GamersFirst and trying to come up with some innovative solutions to resolve this problem. We don't have a definitive timeline for this but, again, it is my promise that WE WILL MAKE THIS HAPPEN. GamersFirst and Indy21 will do manual account updates if it becomes absolutely necessary athough we don't think it will come to that!

3. Design and Develop exciting new content updates and communicate the release schedule with you all. The abandonment of our community has fired up each one of our developers here in Korea and they are on a mission to make the 9Dragons community the greatest gaming community out there via providing you with enriched content updates.

With our combined efforts, we will all be playing 9Dragons again very very soon and we look forward to this new chapter in our journey as a stronger community and close friends.


Partner and Chief Financial Officer

Indy21 Co., Ltd.

In fact, nothing new. We work on 9D, we work on database... etc etc etc. Just another name who said that, that's all.  And the funny part is "10 days". Every little kid is thinking they will be able to play in 10 days. I don't wanna be in their shoes in the 11th day...

Saturday, 4 September 2010

No more 9Dragons

At least not as we used to know it...

To explain myself, i asked Hyperion in PM for permission to post on the forum the game storyline. Including clans, war..everything. His answer was:

"Hyperion: Unfortunatly, we cannot use that story. Which is a big shame as it was quite good"

So, good bye 9Dragons. Nothing new about the storyline, if we are gonna have a storyline from now on; or who's gonna be the new writer, since they cannot use Steven's. I'll try to keep you guys updated as soon as possible. Wich might be tuesday, if Hyperion will reply to my message.

P.S. The website is on, btw: http://www.gamersfirst.com/9dragons

edit: Unofficial sources said that Steven himself said G1 doesn't need his permision for the Lore ingame, but to pos it on forum/website. Wich is half good to know; the storyline will stay the same. Still, there are some issues about the legal rights. Steven already sent an email to G1 regarding this issue. But that's all i have for now.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Hyperion about fresh start and G1

Hmm, how to respond to this....

It seems like this thread has a LOT of history and emotions behind it (obviously), so I will take a moment to remind you guys to remain respective and be constructive at all times.

From the feedback I have gotten, it seems MOST of the community wants the account information and not a fresh start.

There are more benefits to the Game, Community, and GamersFirst for us not to start over...so that is the road we will be traveling down. So yeah...

Anyway, once we get the game going again, we will likely start a new server for those interested in a fresh start.

Oh, I also wanted to respond to the questions of G1 being greedy "like Acclaim was"...even though I will probably have to write this dozens of times.

It should go without saying, but GamersFirst is in the business of free online games, and that business requires us to make money off our property in any/all ways we can.

So, it should be clear that we will be PERCEIVED to be greedy "like Acclaim was...". This perspective is a byproduct of being in the business of free2play online games. There is no charity or non-profit organization that publishes quality online games out of simply the goodness of their hearts.

We do go about it a bit differently, although I am not 100% sure how Acclaim did their monetization, our philosophy about making money is this:

publish online game

Just kidding...its more like this:

Publish online game
Provide quality support
Deliver new content and features
Grow and nurture the game community
Create fun events and promotions the community can get excited about
Come up with new and crazy ways to do all of the above
Troll players on the forums

To us it boils down to the mantra that "Happy players spend more money...", so we want to keep you happy, so you give us your money. There is no shame in admitting that we want to take your money, because we view that money as your support for our operation, and without your support, we would have no operation. Every dollar you spend is like a vote in a free2play game. It is also a lot more fun to do it this way, which is why GamersFirst hires people that understand how gamers think (because we are gamers ourselves). Almost every meeting we have here gets prolonged because someone inevitably says "but...but...is this what our players really want?..." or something to that affect.

Only the invisible hand of the market and time will tell if we are doing things the right way.

Hope that clears things up, I did go a bit off-topic, but I did have to comment on "greed" sooner or later.


Hyperion's "Daily Update"

Ok, not so "daily" but still, much more better then Acclaim, regarding the news. Last and maybe most important news till today is: 

1. "We have sent over a ton of information to Indy and they are sending us back some critical files (such as the game client) overnight.

Tomorrow, the new 9Dragons website should be live! That's kind of a big deal"

Bi"g deal or not, things are moving. Still nothing about the database yet. 

2. "We had a great meeting with Indy21, and it looks like I will soon (I know you hate it when I use the word soon, but its faster than "in a while") be able to give out the information you all are going crazy for (regarding the DB and when the game will be back up).

Obviously, the website is NOT up yet, this is due to some bugs that need to be verified as fixed before the site can go live. This will surely be completed while I am sleeping tonight, so I think that the website will go up tomorrow morning.

I know it can be frustrating having to deal with me being evasive on the really important topics of the account DB and when the game will be back. The reason for this is because I do not want to break my promises to you guys. In my opinion, from a players perspective, it is worse for a community manager to break their promises than to be evasive. So, until i get a confirmed date on the items I am refering to, I won't be posting the update you want to see (which I should do....SOON!)"