Electronic Arts Disables "Non-Critical" SimCity Features - UPDATED

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 NEXT
 

Electronic Arts Disables "Non-Critical" SimCity Features - UPDATED

image

Electronic Arts is disabling leaderboards, achievements and other functions in an effort to alleviate the strain on overloaded SimCity servers.

The launch of SimCity, if you've somehow managed to miss it, has not gone well. It's not exactly a surprising development, given the disastrous launch history of games that require always-on internet connections, but it's still an ugly scene. Players can't connect to the servers, can't access their cities, can't make contact with friends; right now, the game is like a box of chocolates, all of them filled with crap.

EA is struggling to get things under control, naturally, but its latest move makes the situation sound pretty dire. "We are continuing to do everything we can to address the server issues. In the meantime, so that we can give you as good an experience as possible, we are in the process of deploying a hotfix to all servers," Community Manager LadyCoconut wrote on the EA forums. "This includes various improvements and also disables a few non-critical gameplay features (leaderboards, achievements and region filters). Disabling these features will in no way affect your core gameplay experience."

EA did not indicate how long these features will be disabled, but the simple fact that it's willing to cripple the game to make the "core gameplay" work speaks volumes about its desperation to get something going. The company also announced earlier today that it will be adding more SimCity servers over the next two days and as always, thanked gamers for their patience.

Source: EA Forums

UPDATE: The SimCity 1.2 patch is now available, promising to fix crashes caused by lag, broken server select dialogs and other issues. But it also disables "Cheetah speed," which is apparently a pretty big feature of the game - Cheetah speed is now the same as Llama speed. Less crashes are definitely a plus, but it's utterly mind-boggling that EA is cutting back all these features just to hopefully bring some semblance of stability to the basic gameplay. This is an absolute debacle.

Have any of you tried the game with the new patch? Does it actually fix things - and, perhaps more importantly, how is the game without Cheetah speed?

Permalink

And just think, all of this could have been avoided if they hadnt introduced pants on head retarded DRM

Obligatory inb4 Thrikeen comes to the defence of his former employer

Beloved franchise sequel launches like a brick to deliver frustration instead of entertainment due to poisonous corporate BS. I smile, my heart filled with a warm and fuzzy glow.

This is what it has come to EA. Like so many others, I now actively wish for the failure of games I would otherwise love so that some percentage of the herd of uninformed victims and tools that still buy your products may finally turn away from you for good and curse your name and everything it touches.

Please people. Stop paying them to abuse you. Stop paying them entirely.

Please enjoy your always on DRM, and micro transactions. Leader boards and other minor services will be released as future DLC. A functioning game will be released as an expansion: It wont be a new game, it'll just work.

Seriously, I just read that they are blocking people who ask for refunds and other stupid crap. I'm surprised if EA still had legs, I've lost count on how many times they've shot their own feet.

I guess they thought complete server coverage was also a "Non-Critical" feature.

I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

Too bad they didn't have a large beta test of anything to test these issues before the launch.

As a side note, there were lots of connection issues with the beta. I've now learned that a difficult beta is an indication of how a launch is going to go.

Desert Punk:
And just think, all of this could have been avoided if they hadnt introduced pants on head retarded DRM

Obligatory inb4 Thrikeen comes to the defence of his former employer

It's not even like they couldn't have foreseen this as an outcome, either. How often has there been a problem with an always-online game, especially near launch?

Zachary Amaranth:

Desert Punk:
And just think, all of this could have been avoided if they hadnt introduced pants on head retarded DRM

Obligatory inb4 Thrikeen comes to the defence of his former employer

It's not even like they couldn't have foreseen this as an outcome, either. How often has there been a problem with an always-online game, especially near launch?

Agreed, and you know the "Servers cost moneys!" excuse doesnt even fly, because its not like EA wouldnt be able to find another use for a few less than used servers after the launch rush was over.

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

So, no word yet on how they justify threatening to ban people's accounts for trying to claim the refund EA offered? Awesome. I'm so glad EA are such good guys like CliffyB said. Otherwise, everyone involved in this wreck would look REALLY dumb and at least a little evil...

This is very frusterating to read.

The idea that they're opting to fix the issues at hand, when the real problem is what's causing these issues to begin with. It's so infuriating to think that EA thinks they can control their consumer base, when such problems like these suggest they might not even be able to properly do such a thing, yet insist on enforcing it.

You know, I'm starting to think EA are actually pretty good at entertaining people. It's just a shame for them that the entertainment is watching them make bumbling mistakes and tripping up over their own feet. There aren't even microtransactions involved when watching them take a metaphorical rake-to-the-face over the SimCity launch fiasco.

Capitano Segnaposto:

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

Logic flies out the window when EA is involved around here.

Though it's probably just hundreds of thousands, considering even World of Warcraft doesn't have hundreds of millions of people playing.

OT: Do people really care about leaderboards and achievements that much anyway? Especially in a game about building and managing a city? Doesn't really seem like anything to get worked up about to me.

I like that their always-on DRM bullshit causing EA grief, but I am dismayed at the same time because it means that a lot of people bought it.

EA, with their unending Tunnel Vision that can only see the bottom line, will see the massive sales and think "Okay, gamers don't care if the game is always online and has microtransactions. I guess we'll make that mandatory for everything now! Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk!" They don't care if people are unhappy with the product, they paid a non-refundable sum (Just because they said "you can ask for" a refund, doesn't mean they'll give you one, because they wont).

Ugh.

So they put up always-on DRM with the justification that there will be leaderboards and other useless junk. Then, when their servers can't handle it, they disable the leaderboards and other useless junk. EA, you're adorable.

Capitano Segnaposto:

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

The problem I personally have isn't that it's "easy to prevent".

The problem is this: It shouldn't have to happen at all.

Why on Earth do we need always-on to begin with? Take that out of the equation and suddenly you don't have the game entirely unplayable for a bunch of people on day one.

Why does noone prepare for this? We saw Anno, Diablo 3 and now SimCity. Is it so hard to conceive that you have to expect a metric fuckton of users on day one and need to prepare for that?

Yes, actually preparing for it is hard, but for god's sake, if you force always-on and bullshit like that, you will have to deal with having to prepare for such a strain before it's released.

And yet they keep wondering why people pirate? Well if doing it that way gives you a better experience and costs less, then it only makes sense. Right now I just couldn't care about it at all, I got Civ 5 golden for 75% off from steam.

shrekfan246:

Capitano Segnaposto:

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

Logic flies out the window when EA is involved around here.

Though it's probably just hundreds of thousands, considering even World of Warcraft doesn't have hundreds of millions of people playing.

OT: Do people really care about leaderboards and achievements that much anyway? Especially in a game about building and managing a city? Doesn't really seem like anything to get worked up about to me.

Obviously I can't speak for everyone, but the achievements annoy me more than anything in that game. I like the idea of achievements, but the way they are implemented in Sim City is to throw out a huge pop up right in the middle of your screen. It's annoying as hell and gets in the way of what you're doing. I hope they keep them out.

Capitano Segnaposto:

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

I don't think anybody (including me) gives a crap about that. Especially since NOBODY wanted DRM for this damn game in the first place! To go "oh think how hard it is to set up the servers and stuff..." yeah, I don't care because I didn't want any damn servers in my damn single player game.

This is nothing short of pants on head retarded. These clowns brought this upon themselves, and now they are butchering the game that they worked so hard to force this bullshit on. Makes perfect sense. Now if they didn't put an always-onlne DRM package in this, they would have a sizable consumer base, playing their game and being satisfied wit it. yeah, there would be pirates, but there are always pirates, but at this point the swashbucklers are offering a hands-down better service than the monolithic corporations. No wonder people pirate this shit.

Capitano Segnaposto:

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

I think they're fully well capable of realizing that. And the fact that it's hard is in no way an excuse for this. EA is a multi-billion dollar company. They knew full well what they got into especially after launches like Diablo 3's.

And yet they make the same mistakes. Despite the lessons they could've learned they learned nothing and failed showing fairly little regard of their customers. And if they didn't have the means because it's too hard and they still went through with it, well that's both anti-consumer and stupid.

Also, hundreds of millions of people? You might be overstretching Simcity's popularity.

Hmm... You know, maybe - and I'm just having a thought here - maybe making it so that everyone playing your game didn't have to be connected to your servers might reduce the strain on your servers? Just a little bit? Because it seems to me that someone building a private city, just to get up to their own fun, might not need to be connected to everyone else...

But then, what do I know, I haven't even bought the game since (A) it's not out in the UK yet and (B) it has an always-on internet requirement...

dragongit:
Please enjoy your always on DRM, and micro transactions. Leader boards and other minor services will be released as future DLC. A functioning game will be released as an expansion: It wont be a new game, it'll just work.

Seriously, I just read that they are blocking people who ask for refunds and other stupid crap. I'm surprised if EA still had legs, I've lost count on how many times they've shot their own feet.

image

You mean stuff like this?

Capitano Segnaposto:

Bernzz:
I am in shock.

Nobody saw this coming, especially after Diablo 3's stellar launch.

Oh wait.

I love how people can't seem to wrap their heads around how hard it is to organize, set-up, protect, and keep hundreds of millions of people on servers at once.

Nope. It is all easy. Simple as flipping a switch.

/facedesk

I don't understand the reasoning here. If a company insists on selling their games as a service instead of a product, the difficulty of that business model is not a valid defense for incompetence. EA made the design decisions here and should be held fully accountable for delivering the promised product when it is purchased, not at some later, unspecified date with several features still missing. What's worse is blaming the paying customers for being upset about the situation, as if their expectation of a working service is somehow unreasonable. My inability to grasp the difficult logistics of running a restaurant should in no way preclude me from complaining that my food was served cold, three hours after I ordered it, with half the meal missing.

Sean Strife:

dragongit:
Please enjoy your always on DRM, and micro transactions. Leader boards and other minor services will be released as future DLC. A functioning game will be released as an expansion: It wont be a new game, it'll just work.

Seriously, I just read that they are blocking people who ask for refunds and other stupid crap. I'm surprised if EA still had legs, I've lost count on how many times they've shot their own feet.

image

You mean stuff like this?

hah...

HAHAHAHA

EA corporate retard says you can ask for refund and then the customer service (HA) person tells you "Well he said you can ask one, doesnt mean we will give one."

Fucking...classy...

Desert Punk:
And just think, all of this could have been avoided if they hadnt introduced pants on head retarded DRM

It's not so retarded if you consider their endgame is to slow-drip DLC.
60 USD for a game that launches with 30 dollars of Day 1 DLC available.

Methinks the Always-Online DRM is less about deterring piracy, and more about herding consumers into a controlled market pen, methinks.

It's easier to sell a $90 game in $10 chunks than it is to sell it all at once.

Sean Strife:

image

You mean stuff like this?

Oh if that's real...Jesus that is sickening.

And the sick part is that if this goes viral and makes a big stink, the employee will fired as a pariah (for doing what s/he was told to do) than to actually address the problem.

Atmos Duality:

Oh if that's real...Jesus that is sickening.

And the sick part is that if this goes viral and makes a big stink, the employee will fired as a pariah (for doing what s/he was told to do) than to actually address the problem.

This is EA we're talking about here. Would it really surprise you if this is real?

Sean Strife:

dragongit:
Please enjoy your always on DRM, and micro transactions. Leader boards and other minor services will be released as future DLC. A functioning game will be released as an expansion: It wont be a new game, it'll just work.

Seriously, I just read that they are blocking people who ask for refunds and other stupid crap. I'm surprised if EA still had legs, I've lost count on how many times they've shot their own feet.

image

You mean stuff like this?

Anyone else want to play "Guess if Adrian is his/her real name and what country he/she is actually from?", cause I would be shocked, SHOCKED, if they weren't reading from a script during that conversation.

Getting back to the point, you have to wonder if EA's corporate culture is so messed up that promotions and sales never called up the technology department and said "Yea, you know those Simcity servers you're setting up? You're probably gonna want more...a LOT more." If I was a stockholder I'd be asking some questions because stuff like this is a big red flag of this company about to be driven into the ground.

Sean Strife:

Atmos Duality:

Oh if that's real...Jesus that is sickening.

And the sick part is that if this goes viral and makes a big stink, the employee will fired as a pariah (for doing what s/he was told to do) than to actually address the problem.

This is EA we're talking about here. Would it really surprise you if this is real?

It wouldn't, but I'm trying to remain somewhat objective here.
We live in an age of metacritic bombing and grotesque overuse of hyperbole.

Given the astonishing amount of EA hate (not undeserved), I wouldn't put it past someone to doctor a chat.
But if OTHER users start coming forward about their refunds being rejected because of this...someone needs to make a big stink about it.

It's false advertising and should go to court...except Origin conveniently requires the user to cede their rights away to arbitration (which is basically a way of saying "You have no rights. We win. Period").

Ickabod:
Too bad they didn't have a large beta test of anything to test these issues before the launch.

As a side note, there were lots of connection issues with the beta. I've now learned that a difficult beta is an indication of how a launch is going to go.

You mean those crappy 1 hour weekend tests they did a few weeks back? Oh yeah, they were going to get alot of data from that.

I would hope EA would learn from this and in a couple of years release a Sim City title that wasn't saddled with the always-on drm. Sadly they won't, if anything they'll find a way to blame their customers for everything.

Sean Strife:

dragongit:
Please enjoy your always on DRM, and micro transactions. Leader boards and other minor services will be released as future DLC. A functioning game will be released as an expansion: It wont be a new game, it'll just work.

Seriously, I just read that they are blocking people who ask for refunds and other stupid crap. I'm surprised if EA still had legs, I've lost count on how many times they've shot their own feet.

image

You mean stuff like this?

Thank you for that picture it was beautiful. You know Simcity was actually the first game that made me consider origin. Both BF3 and ME3 didn't have that much swaying power due to all their controversy and crap but I waited on Simcity and was rewarded with yet another fail train and 60+ bucks saved from me wasting it.

Now that picture has reinvigorated me to never touch origin or EA despite whatever they do. Funny thing is you think you really want a game, until you see all the hoops you have to jump through.

KeyMaster45:
Sadly they won't, if anything they'll find a way to blame their customers for everything.

Don't forget the inevitable "IT'S ALL PIRACY! DAMN YOU GREEDY PEASANTS!".

Jove:

KeyMaster45:
Sadly they won't, if anything they'll find a way to blame their customers for everything.

Don't forget the inevitable "IT'S ALL PIRACY! DAMN YOU GREEDY PEASANTS!".

In a perfect world nobody would bother trying to crack it just so EA would be forced to stand there like a dumb-ass and struggle to come up with an excuse for why it does poorly.

So get this. That Adrian person/whatever...isn't wrong or misrepresenting company policy at all.

https://help.ea.com/article/returns-and-cancellations

Relevant text

EA's Policy:
What is your refund policy for PC digital downloads?
Unfortunately, EA does not offer refunds on any products downloaded through Origin. EA reserves the right, however, to offer refunds under exceptional circumstances at its sole discretion.

That is highly questionable, to say the least.
Caveat emptor.

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here