EA Claims SimCity Problems Are "Almost Behind Us"

EA Claims SimCity Problems Are "Almost Behind Us"

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The publisher says it has reduced SimCity crashes by 92 percent compared to launch day.

The SimCity nightmare, according to Maxis General Manager Lucy Bradshaw, may soon be over. After disabling game features, working through the weekend to upgrade server capacity and, one might think, driving away a significant portion of its audience, the game is now almost in a reliably playable state. It's not exactly a new benchmark of game development excellence, but under the circumstances I suppose we'll have to take what we can get.

Bradshaw said the team will be monitoring servers and metrics to ensure that everything is running as it should, but it will take a few more days before she can guarantee that the situation is copacetic. For now, she said, tens of thousands of new players are logging into the game, and things are looking pretty good.

"I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues," Bradshaw said. "But you put your faith in us. You bought the game with the understanding that we'd quickly fix the server issues. For that support - that incredible commitment from our fans -- we are deeply grateful. As the general manager of Maxis, I want you to know that we cherish your faith in us, and the love you've shown for this franchise."

I would point out that most gamers likely bought the game with the understanding that it would actually work, naively optimistic though that belief may have been. Speaking for myself, anyway, I've never laid down money for a game in the hopes that someday it might run the way it's supposed to, but I'm old and cranky and probably expect too much.

Bradshaw's latest SimCity update can be read in full at ea.com.

Permalink

Good for them.
Next time launch a game with problems "behind you" on release day, thanks.

Andy Chalk:

I would point out that most gamers likely bought the game with the understanding that it would actually work, naively optimistic though that belief may have been.

That is almost exactly what I was going to say when I read the above quotation.

I don't think most of the people who bought it after launch were those aware of the issues it had.

It's still a problem that never should have happened, and didn't have to happen. I don't expect "the game is almost playable, for serial this time guys" is going to warm too many hearts, especially those that wanted refunds and were told to fuck off.

I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues

And yet you went right ahead and made it always online anyway.
0/10 would not sympathize

You'd think after what happened to Diablo 3, they would EXPECT this sort of problem to come up and PLAN for it? Aren't there people working there who are supposed to plan for what might go wrong? Did none of them read the news when Diablo 3 came out?

And did none of them remember the damn backlash Ubisoft for with their "Always Online DRM"? Aren't we humans supposed to LEARN from our mistakes and the mistakes of others?!

Also, people bought the game not because they thought you'd "quickly fix the server issues", they bought the game because they thought it was going to WORK. Or they thought they might be one of the lucky ones whom the glitches don't touch.

Now all the people who haven't been playing because the servers were down will come back and we'll have a whole new wave of server load issues :P

Is cheetah speed back yet?

DVS BSTrD:

I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues

And yet you went right ahead and made it always online anyway.
0/10 would not sympathize

0/10 would not sympathize?
Doesn't that mean people do sympathize with them rather than not?

OT: Simple solution, make sure there aren't game destroying problems before launch and you don't get this problem.

AC10:
Now all the people who haven't been playing because the servers were down will come back and we'll have a whole new wave of server load issues :P

Is cheetah speed back yet?

I would laugh my ass off if that happened. "Whew, we finally got everything working everybody!" /wave of bad consumers hits and tears everything down again./ "Uh...guys...now put down your pitchforks but..."

And thats if EA survives long enough...

Thank you EA. It's good to know that you don't want to catch game-breaking problems with your game until AFTER the game is released.

Funny, because if EA keeps pissing off Simcity players as much as they are for much longer, then Maxis may well find that by the time they get the servers sorted, the majority of their players have put Simcity behind them.

I was checking this game out on amazon, and was amazed that out of 1,800 reviews, the game has racked up an impressive 1,600 one star reviews. Of course it is also the number 1 selling game at the moment on Amazon's top 100, so I really have no idea what to make of this. It's like some weird quantum effect where the game is simultaneously terrible and awesome.

j-e-f-f-e-r-s:
Funny, because if EA keeps pissing off Simcity players as much as they are for much longer, then Maxis may well find that by the time they get the servers sorted, the majority of their players have put Simcity behind them.

Maybe that is their dastardly plan? They already got the peoples money, so they drive the players off, and the smaller server loads makes it look like they are fixing things!

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Though my heart goes out to the rank-and-file programmers who poured their heart and soul into the project, I think it's overall a good thing that EA and Maxis got such a public drubbing over this failure of a launch. With any hope at all, it will lead to changes in the direction the industry is going. But A part of me thinks that the suits making the decisions have completely divorced themselves from reality, and only bankruptcy for EA and other major offenders will cause any change.

Comocat:
I was checking this game out on amazon, and was amazed that out of 1,800 reviews, the game has racked up an impressive 1,600 one star reviews. Of course it is also the number 1 selling game at the moment on Amazon's top 100, so I really have no idea what to make of this. It's like some weird quantum effect where the game is simultaneously terrible and awesome.

People usually don't review unless something goes wrong. I know I don't.

AC10:
Now all the people who haven't been playing because the servers were down will come back and we'll have a whole new wave of server load issues :P

Is cheetah speed back yet?

oh, you mean the features they touted as being what gamers want, and couldn't get rid of because it would screw up the achievement leaderboards?

nope, watching some current LP's and they are complaining about Cheetah speed still being llama speed.

The server problems are almost behind them, maybe. But gamers are still bitching about the ME3 ending. You really think they'll just move on from this?

Comocat:
I was checking this game out on amazon, and was amazed that out of 1,800 reviews, the game has racked up an impressive 1,600 one star reviews. Of course it is also the number 1 selling game at the moment on Amazon's top 100, so I really have no idea what to make of this. It's like some weird quantum effect where the game is simultaneously terrible and awesome.

No it makes perfect sense to me. All those one star reviews were by angry customers who either knew about the always on DRM or didn't do research, got shafted, and now are bitching and screaming about the broken product due to horrible business practices they just told EA they would support.

Reviews mean nothing if people still support horrible business practices regardless of warnings. I don't like the always on DRM but all those people who pre-ordered or bought it shortly after launch deserve what they got.

Customers need to start taking responsibility for supporting practices that fuck them over, instead of buying it then bitching later after the company has your $$$ and couldn't give two craps about your frustration.

Edit: i'll just leave this here as to why you shouldn't pre-order or even buy day 1.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mf5Uj4XIT1Y

They will be behind us once the pirates figure out a way to get it offline or EA admits to the bullshit of "server processing" being just a lie and finally releases an offline mode.

Am I the only one who never really gave a shit about this game anyway?

DVS BSTrD:

I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues

And yet you went right ahead and made it always online anyway.
0/10 would not suffice

Have we invented the technology yet that let's you ship a fist in a box that comically punches the first person who opens it? If not then I don't think we'll ever be able to get the point across.

I get the feeling that, rather than fixing the server issues, EA just murdered 92% of people who bought the game instead.

KeyMaster45:

DVS BSTrD:

I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues

And yet you went right ahead and made it always online anyway.
0/10 would not suffice

Have we invented the technology yet that let's you ship a fist in a box that comically punches the first person who opens it? If not then I don't think we'll ever be able to get the point across.

Theoretically possible, the difficulty is ensure the person opens the box properly.

A box of poo, however, sent to Lucy Bradshaw, Senior Vice President, Maxis/EA, 09 Redwood Shores Pkwy, Redwood City, CA 94065

Make sure the box looks like its from a respectable cake delivery company, and marked "A thank you cake from all of SimCity's loyal fans" with smiley faces. When she opens it, make sure there is a note (packaged in such a way to ensure it is not contaminated by poo) which reads "Expecting cake, and got poo. Just like us loyal Sim City fans"

Of course, I cannot condone such childishness. No matter how hilarious it is in concept...

Capcha: grease the skids

...not sure they'll need greasing, but it if you think it'll help

Does anyone worry that there is nearly 92% less people trying to play the game since launch?

SomeLameStuff:
And did none of them remember the damn backlash Ubisoft for with their "Always Online DRM"? Aren't we humans supposed to LEARN from our mistakes and the mistakes of others?!

Obviously no, otherwise we'd never have Aliens plotline where the evil PMC tries to control the xenomorphs even though this is dumb idea. But the evil corp de jour won't fail where countless others have failed because the others were evil enough to pull this off. Also not stupid enough, duh, but there isn't really a contest. Those who try to pull off laughably bad schemes can't really be put in a contest anyways.

OT:
Kinda surprised EA is actually trying to fix that. I figured their plan of action would be "well, that bombed badly but we made money so let's run from this burning wreck as far as possible"

92% of the game crashes have been fixed. So this game was 92% broken upon release. I'm sorry, but where I come from. When you screw up that badly. You get fired. You have to start looking for a new job. I'm afraid I'll never be able to buy a Maxis game while they are under the EA umbrella.

DVS BSTrD:

I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues

And yet you went right ahead and made it always online anyway.
0/10 would not sympathize

You know it's sad when they are more scared of reviewers pointing out their visible problems and lack of preparation than they are of actually knowing they made these mistakes well before the game even reached shelves.

EA really needs to know that we gamers just plain dislike DRM and if it happens again it will most likely be either the second to last straw or it will drive another mass portion of gamers away like it has done with Sim City.

j-e-f-f-e-r-s:
Funny, because if EA keeps pissing off Simcity players as much as they are for much longer, then Maxis may well find that by the time they get the servers sorted, the majority of their players have put Simcity behind them.

i think that its not that they fixed the servers, but that most people stopped trying to connect so the servers get less load, and they claim it works now.
cpacha: question mark?
oh, yes, i forgot, thanks.

Andy Chalk:
EA Claims SimCity Problems Are "Almost Behind Us"

image

The publisher says it has reduced SimCity crashes by 92 percent compared to launch day.

The SimCity nightmare, according to Maxis General Manager Lucy Bradshaw, may soon be over. After disabling game features, working through the weekend to upgrade server capacity and, one might think, driving away a significant portion of its audience, the game is now almost in a reliably playable state. It's not exactly a new benchmark of game development excellence, but under the circumstances I suppose we'll have to take what we can get.

Bradshaw said the team will be monitoring servers and metrics to ensure that everything is running as it should, but it will take a few more days before she can guarantee that the situation is copacetic. For now, she said, tens of thousands of new players are logging into the game, and things are looking pretty good.

"I can't begin to explain the way a development team feels when something you're proud of is threatened at launch. Our biggest fear was that people who love this franchise would be scared off by bad reviews about the connectivity issues," Bradshaw said. "But you put your faith in us. You bought the game with the understanding that we'd quickly fix the server issues. For that support - that incredible commitment from our fans -- we are deeply grateful. As the general manager of Maxis, I want you to know that we cherish your faith in us, and the love you've shown for this franchise."

I would point out that most gamers likely bought the game with the understanding that it would actually work, naively optimistic though that belief may have been. Speaking for myself, anyway, I've never laid down money for a game in the hopes that someday it might run the way it's supposed to, but I'm old and cranky and probably expect too much.

Bradshaw's latest SimCity update can be read in full at ea.com.

Permalink

I Wanted to love Sword of the stars II. I was set to have a great experience. I trusted Paradox and was trusting in their ability to provide me with a quality game. I was dissapointed, and not i, nor anyone i've talked to have trusted Paradox in the same way since(yah, i know it's a game studio not my childhood friend). Now with EA, they keep on messing up, and people keep trusting that a AAA studio can't keep on making these misstakes. But they will, because whether or not we like it, they sit on a LOT of good intellectual property, i mean, not as many as they did last year. But still.

I think SimCity's problems are more than server deep.

I'm guessing this is also an issue with the servers rather than braindead AI that you programmed into the game Maxis/EA?

And we believe EA because?

the darknees abyss:
And we believe EA because?

Very good Question. I personally do not believe that anything that EA produces could possibly be Fun; with new IP you don't care and with older IP you get the feeling that someone mutilated and raped the Corpse of your best friend and slaps you in the dick with it. That is, if you can even recognize that Corpse.
Well it's what EA does. They have done this for over two decades now.
Alright, two decades ago there where some games that where actually good coming from EA but you could already see what was coming.
Any other old People remember the "Yuri's Revenge" expansion for "Red Alert 2"? The most intrusive copy protection system of the time.
Pretty much everything that they did has had some questionable thing in it. Nowadays, they have their games running on their own origin Platform, where the name itself bears the stench of the recently unearthed deceased but because of that is actually quite fitting for something that could only come from the seventh circle of hell.

A short comparison origin/steam: Steam asks you if you want to participate in a survey.
Origin just scans and has a process running constantly. When it sends the data, what it actually sends and where it sends it and how secure my data is when it's there, now one knows.
Since Origin leaves my system vulnerable for an outside attack, i will not install any games that require it.

But EA continues to screw you over with stuff like this.

It has been enough for about a decade now. To People who buy EA products i can merely say that they haven't been prudent enough.

Or to put it simply: if i kick you in the balls and then you give me ten bucks for it, it might lead to me kicking you in the balls again.
If yoo continue to give me ten bucks everytime i kick you in the balls for about twenty years, you have lost all rights to complain about me kicking you in the balls.

Gameguy20100:
Am I the only one who never really gave a shit about this game anyway?

Nope, the only sim games I've ever been interested in are the stronghold games and that's because it's an RTS aswell.

Sim city just seems dull to me and I would rather stare out my window for an hour than play it. :P

 

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