Update 2: EA Dismisses Dungeon Keeper Mobile Criticism

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Houseman:
If I know anything about community-gathered ratings, it's that they can be manipulated. You can buy those 4.5 stars, just like you can buy those "downloads".

Nobody knows what "in-game engagement" means, because it probably doesn't mean anything.

This guy's career is probably over if he speaks out against it, especially so early on.

Maybe keep that in mind before anyone decides to talk shit about him.

Are you implying that one's career should be worth more than one's pride, character and honesty?

Depends on how much he can afford to lose his job. Most people aren't samurai and won't willing give their lives to die, or starve in the streets with honor.

truckspond:
Thank goodness for people making videos on the internet! They can articulate the frustrations with the game way better than I can! http://www.nerdcubed.co.uk/videos/nerdcubed-101-dungeon-keeper-mobile/

I came here to comment on the update to this story, but THAT just added fuel to the fire for me.

I am a Dungeon Keeper fan. Played the first one, played the second, loved them. I was gonna let this game slip past my radar. I don't mobile game, and I thought that this game looked like shit, so I was just gonna dismiss it, move on, and not even comment on it.

But... this is too much. At this point, I've moved past the point where them making a mockery of a franchise I loved pissed me off. That's actually the LAST thing that's getting to me. This "game" is an absolute travesty, and everyone involved with this should be ashamed. The developers should be ashamed of themselves for creating such a shallow attempt at a cash-grab. EA should be ashamed of themselves for obviously pushing the developers to make the game that way (and for, you know, completely rigging the rating system). And we, as a gaming community, should be ashamed that something like THIS is circulating around, masquerading as legitimate entertainment.

I've never said "fuck EA" or anything to that effect before. I've just never really had a strong enough reaction to their antics before to muster that kind of bile. But THIS?! Seriously, fuck you EA. Fuck. You. If only for how fucking smugly you've been lording those 5 star ratings over our heads, after you VERY clearly have been doing everything in your power to both directly and indirectly sway them as far in your favor as far as they'll go.

Seriously, is there anything we, as a community, can do to make a stand against EA for this crap? I'm actually, legitimately furious over this bullshit.

Leemaster777:

truckspond:
Thank goodness for people making videos on the internet! They can articulate the frustrations with the game way better than I can! http://www.nerdcubed.co.uk/videos/nerdcubed-101-dungeon-keeper-mobile/

I came here to comment on the update to this story, but THAT just added fuel to the fire for me.

I am a Dungeon Keeper fan. Played the first one, played the second, loved them. I was gonna let this game slip past my radar. I don't mobile game, and I thought that this game looked like shit, so I was just gonna dismiss it, move on, and not even comment on it.

But... this is too much. At this point, I've moved past the point where them making a mockery of a franchise I loved pissed me off. That's actually the LAST thing that's getting to me. This "game" is an absolute travesty, and everyone involved with this should be ashamed. The developers should be ashamed of themselves for creating such a shallow attempt at a cash-grab. EA should be ashamed of themselves for obviously pushing the developers to make the game that way (and for, you know, completely rigging the rating system). And we, as a gaming community, should be ashamed that something like THIS is circulating around, masquerading as legitimate entertainment.

I've never said "fuck EA" or anything to that effect before. I've just never really had a strong enough reaction to their antics before to muster that kind of bile. But THIS?! Seriously, fuck you EA. Fuck. You. If only for how fucking smugly you've been lording those 5 star ratings over our heads, after you VERY clearly have been doing everything in your power to both directly and indirectly sway them as far in your favor as far as they'll go.

Seriously, is there anything we, as a community, can do to make a stand against EA for this crap? I'm actually, legitimately furious over this bullshit.

If you haven't heard of War for the Overworld, you may want to check it out.

It's not done yet but keep an eye on it if you're looking to scratch a Dungeon Keeper itch.

At least we can support a company that's not EA to get a spiritual sequel to Dungeon Keeper.

Houseman:

Are you implying that one's career should be worth more than one's pride, character and honesty?

You obviously are still in high school. Yes, one's career is infinitely more important than the "moral high ground" of speaking out against something a week into it's release. Not everyone has their lives paid for by others.

Leemaster777:
Seriously, is there anything we, as a community, can do to make a stand against EA for this crap? I'm actually, legitimately furious over this bullshit.

Yes, don't buy their products and support other publishers/developers who have similar products but don't do this kind of dishonest shit. Also vote for them when the next Golden Poo awards come around. EA are a shooin' for a hattrick and winning it twice in a row ruffled their feathers so getting it three years running might actually get them to change.

Wow, this after they managed to ruin Plants vs Zombies 2. I was defending EA when I first tried PvZ 2, but then they revamped it into a more linear, less engaging experience with massively spiked difficulty so the only way to win was to spend in-game cash. This actually sounds far worse than a game that went from loads of fun to barely-playable-but-not-fun.

why does EA have to ruin every franchises they get their hands on ?

So wait, let me just go over this again to make sure I've got the whole picture...

*reads article again*
*reads article a third time just to make sure*
*reads article a fourth time hoping he read it wrong, knowing that he didn't*

Yep. EA literally defended a game against criticism by saying "You're just playing it wrong" and "What, you expected a full game?".

hello everyone, i see you all are having a pretty good time, and i decided to show you this ingame screenshot my friend gave me

image

dont you see anything, peculiar about this picture?

they know, theres just no way they dont realize what they are doing, they are openly and gleefully insulting you

i made an account just to share this with you fellas, enjoy

Is it possible to rate something without downloading it? I would very much like to give this piece of fetid horseshit a 1 star rating on the Play store but I'd rather not have to add to their download number to do it.

lacktheknack:

Rangerboy87:
*folds hands in prayer* "Dear Lord, please let Jim take a whack at this. Please let Jim take a whack at this. Thank you, God, for Jim"

[insert Slowpoke picture here]

There's enough rage-smashing in there already, I don't think we need a full episode on it.

I know that, but I want him to take shots at this response. I have a feeling he'd have a lot to say about that. Not to mention, Jim bashing EA is the gift that keeps on giving.

Ympulse:

Houseman:

Are you implying that one's career should be worth more than one's pride, character and honesty?

You obviously are still in high school. Yes, one's career is infinitely more important than the "moral high ground" of speaking out against something a week into it's release. Not everyone has their lives paid for by others.

I happen to disagree, and I am not in High School.

My basic attitude is that this is how institutionalized corruption happens, everyone does their part because they need to in order to survive, no matter how bad what they are supporting might be. Even if your just the guy sweeping the floors, if your helping prop up a corrupt company you share responsibility for what's going on.

Now, I understand the right thing is not always the easy thing, but the principle stands, he's absolutely correct.

This is also why society is such a wreck, after all for evil to win, all it needs is for good men to stand by and do nothing, which is pretty much modern society in a nutshell, except we don't just do nothing, we do evil's laundary, answer it's phones, fetch it's mail, sweep it's floors, cook it's meals, and everything else. "What other choice do I have! If I don't I'll starve! It's not like everyone else will walk away, and when I go they will just replace me..." It's actually not an uncommon situation and set of thoughts.

But then again in trying to do what I think are the right things I haven't exactly made a great life for myself or won many friends so (shrugs). I still stand by the principle though, and think that at the end of the day people simply taking the path of least resistance is why society is such a mess, and on a smaller scale, why companies like EA continue to operate with such imputiny. We're shocked that EA can be so blunt about what it's doing, but at the same time it's not like anyone is going to do anything to stop them, except maybe whine on the internet.

Rangerboy87:

lacktheknack:

Rangerboy87:
*folds hands in prayer* "Dear Lord, please let Jim take a whack at this. Please let Jim take a whack at this. Thank you, God, for Jim"

[insert Slowpoke picture here]

There's enough rage-smashing in there already, I don't think we need a full episode on it.

I know that, but I want him to take shots at this response. I have a feeling he'd have a lot to say about that. Not to mention, Jim bashing EA is the gift that keeps on giving.

He already did take a swipe at it in the most recent "Rhymedown", his part of it has him opening up the microtransaction window in the video and refusing to do anything until you buy something.

That said, I'm not sure what even Jim can say about Dungeon Keeper at this point, I mean he can call them out on it even worse, but at this point it's not like anyone is going to care. Sure the whole "don't spend money on a game like this" message is a good one, but chances are if your already listening to Jim your smart enough not to be doing that.

I love hearing Jim rant (even when I strongly disagree with him), and it can be kind of relaxing to see him more eloquently rip into things I detest than I ever could.... and I guess hearing him do it this time might make me feel better for like 15 minutes, but at the end of the day, what is it going to accomplish? There are just so many dumb people out there supporting this kind of thing that what the rest of us think doesn't matter. They aren't getting my money, they aren't getting yours, they aren't getting Jim's, and probably haven't been for a good long while, they have been voted worst company in America two years running, and yet this latest atrocity still happened.

I'm feeling a mite bit depressed right at the moment for some reason, I'm just saying while I look forward to hearing what Jim has to say, the thing that's really attention grabbing about this whole thing is that EA already seems to have gotten away with it... unless I'm missing something. Even if they took the app down tomorrow, they probably sold tons of those gems to dumb people going by how quick their response was, and really at this point taking it down would just screw the people who paid them even worse by causing them to lose their virtual property/currency. 70 pounds is enough to excavate what... 56 blocks? So someone sitting there with their 70 pound 56 block dungeon being out their money and their app and feeling even dumber isn't going to really accomplish much.

NuclearKangaroo:
hello everyone, i see you all are having a pretty good time, and i decided to show you this ingame screenshot my friend gave me

dont you see anything, peculiar about this picture?

they know, theres just no way they dont realize what they are doing, they are openly and gleefully insulting you

i made an account just to share this with you fellas, enjoy

Maybe I'm missing it, but is that the Bullfrog logo on the banners?

hazabaza1:
Also keep in mind that this is a page of the majority of the reviews on the google play page:
image

So yeah it's pretty shitty. I think we all suspected that though.

Astroturfing is relatively common practice on Google Play, but only because Google's more lenient (negligent). Apple actually clamps down hard on would-be astroturfers and has even banned several companies in the past for doing so.

Edit:

By the way:

image

I just read the article's update and now I understand how the 5 star ratings are created. Is that even legal or allowed by the Google Play rules?

-Dragmire-:
[FADE IN]

"Jeff, why are you staring at that blank wall?"

"The wall says everything's ok. The wall doesn't judge, the wall doesn't hate."

"They're shouting from across the street. People are REALLY pissed off!"

"Shhhh, the wall says they are just a vocal minority. The wall says we made a good game and the people like the small taste of Dungeon Keeper... and they'll pay for another taste.... and another.... and another...

"Um, yeah but isn't a hundre-"

"Hush now, that's for the hardcore crowd, right wall?"

"Those are the people that are pissed off the most! Oh god, did someone break a window!?"

"The wall says people are happy. The wall says everything will be fine."

"AHHH, run sir, they've set the studio on fire! RUN!"

"I'll stay here with the wall. The wall protects, yes, the wall protects.... I love you wall...."

[SLOW FADE TO BLACK AS THE SOUND OF THE FIRE AND SIRENS PLAY IN THE BACKGROUND]

And the Oscar for best writer goes to...

OT: This is the kind of thing that makes people unsympathetic when a large EA studio is shut down! I get the feeling that people will remember this when the internet elects them for the worst company in America for a third year in the row!

Therumancer:

NuclearKangaroo:
hello everyone, i see you all are having a pretty good time, and i decided to show you this ingame screenshot my friend gave me

dont you see anything, peculiar about this picture?

they know, theres just no way they dont realize what they are doing, they are openly and gleefully insulting you

i made an account just to share this with you fellas, enjoy

Maybe I'm missing it, but is that the Bullfrog logo on the banners?

yes, every single line of code of this abomination is an insult to customers and fans

they knew this game was garbage, no rational human being can honestly think waiting upwards to 24 hours to destroy a single block of dirt is "fair", the shady way in which they handled scores only confirms that, and yet, despite knowingly making a terrible game that completely craps over the legacy of the originals, they have the nerve to put banners of bullfrog over every destroyed building, as if saying "remember bullfrog? yes we destroyed them, we completely evaporated one of the most unique and inventive developers from the face of the earth, and we are now slandering their legacy with this farce"

BrownGaijin:

And the Oscar for best writer goes to...

OT: This is the kind of thing that makes people unsympathetic when a large EA studio is shut down! I get the feeling that people will remember this when the internet elects them for the worst company in America for a third year in the row!

remember those are real people working there, most of them likely dont want their company and its legacy to end, i will never be happy with the closure of great studios such as bullfrog, origin and pandemic, they still had a lot to offer, and it was the decision of the suits running the show at EA, their decision alone to close em down

Its situations like this that I wish the same people who downvote bomb scores on MetaCritic would do the same to this game.

First off, how can they even state that their rating is legitimate? They're being complete assbags by stating that higher reviews will allow them to generate more content - basically holding people hostage. I'm sure a vast majority of people who hit 5 Stars for a rating were doing so because they said "Well, free content is nice."

Second off, just because a few people like your page or game does not instantly invalidate the criticism leveled against it. Just because some people don't mind the click-twice-every-24-hours game play locked behind a massive paywall doesn't mean that ham fisted attempts at cash grabs aren't a bad business practice.

Third off, I really hope EA is fine never making another Dungeon Keeper game again. Because things like this tend to burn people pretty badly. Brand Loyalty is a really important thing, and although they might see some short term financial success from Dungeon Keepers free to play model, that model is very limited, and once its tapped, a new title won't be viable.

And fourth off, for a company that keeps saying they "Don't want to be the worst company in the world, in fact, they want to be the best," they certainly haven't gotten that last part down. Is it hyperbolic for people to vote EA as the worst company? Yeah. But you're not winning over any consumer good will when you do stupid crap like this. You took a beloved cult classic and morphed it into the worst excuse of Free To Play on the market. Think about that for a second. How would anyone consider you a good company if your legacy is whoring out classic games to make short term profits at the cost of the love and adoration of your fanbase? You're not the worst company in the world EA, but you are a shallow, cowardly corporation that's scared of risk and more concerned with profit than customer good will.

What really saddens me is someone probably thought that with the game's theme centering on gleeful evildoing, they'd be able to throw in all those jabs at those of us who do want to protest egregious use of IAPs.

A little more and you'd read "Oh, I know it's awful, Keeper. It's despicable, underhanded, presumptuous and basely mercantile... Isn't it wonderful?"

A game's tone does not equal an endorsement of your practices, EA!

Edit: Oh, and look at all the "Dungeon Keeper Mobile Hacks" that are sprouting up like pimples on a teenager's face after a pepperoni bender. A quick jaunt on YouTube and Google shows that most of these "apps" don't circunvent the IAPs so much as they siphon your iTunes account info from your mobile device. A WHOIS search reveals that most of these highly fortuitous circumvention methods are offered on sites that aren't much older than the game itself.

So, to add insult to injury, EA is giving ammo to filchers who are more than willing to make off with the credit info of a few thousand gullible idiots.

"EA Games: challenge everything!" including the sensibilities of fans of one of the best games ever made.

Dungeon Keeper was a perfect management game both mechanically and with its setting. Now we get this shit.

EA going for a hat-trick. Golden poo. Three years in a row.

...WWHAGALGGALHARGH WHAT?!

There are simply no words adequate to describe my frustration with EA at this point. I'm done, that's all, that's it, I am never going to buy another product from EA. Mirror's Edge 2 looked intriguing but...That company deserves to wither and die, but not before they get a third golden poop.

all the good will EA have started to build recently with their PR is suddenly pissed away in a moment of super villain greed

truckspond:
Thank goodness for people making videos on the internet! They can articulate the frustrations with the game way better than I can! http://www.nerdcubed.co.uk/videos/nerdcubed-101-dungeon-keeper-mobile/

Thank you for reminding me i need to watch more nerdcubed.

Abomination:
"EA Games: challenge everything!" including the sensibilities of fans of one of the best games ever made.

Dungeon Keeper was a perfect management game both mechanically and with its setting. Now we get this shit.

EA going for a hat-trick. Golden poo. Three years in a row.

i always said that their "Challenge everything" meant that they are trying to challenge common sense and see how far they can psuh their users without it explding in their face. sort of like how those folks who experimented with Chernobyl till it went boom.

i so want the consumerist be allow EA in for the third year (looks like thier article on it thinks that EA overshadows other "bigger" problems and thus shouldnt be up for voting this year).

i do wish they would keep getting the golden poos till they actually fix thier practices. and even more i wish that people would stop buying crap like this.

Rabid_meese:
Its situations like this that I wish the same people who downvote bomb scores on MetaCritic would do the same to this game.

Interestingly enough, they DID bomb it on Metacritic. It's critic score is 46, and its user score is sitting at a healthy 0.2.

StHubi:
I just read the article's update and now I understand how the 5 star ratings are created. Is that even legal or allowed by the Google Play rules?

Technically it's not. Influencing the rating in any way is against Google's submission policy. But apps get a sort of score, and as long as they don't break too many rules, they pass.

I sincerely hope that the people to come out on top of this issue are GoG and Subterranian games. Raising awareness of a good franchise can be the only positive we can grasp from all this.

That is if it doesn't miraculously destroy EA entirely... But that would be way too much to ask.

I don't understand how the developers that made this piece of utter garbage can look themselves in the mirror when they go home. They have to know. They have to know that what they made is a complete disgrace to what used to be a wonderful series. Was this what they envisioned when they went to school? That one day they'd help ruin gaming while working at EA?

EA *destroyed* Bullfrog and years later has the gall to dredge up this wonderful series and release a free to play mobile piece of dreck?

Also hilarious is him bragging about their 4.5 rating. Coincidentally, their metascore for the game is also 4.5........out of 10.

Flatfrog:

I haven't read the whole thread but one thing no one seems to be referring to is what seems to me the most obvious game that EA were modelling this on, Clash of Clans. My son plays this quite a lot, pretty much exactly as EA describes - he nips onto it every day for a few minutes, monitors his status, picks up any gold that's lying about, looks back over footage of any raids carried out on his fortress, moves a few things around, sets various things in motion and turns the game off again. I don't let him spend any money on microtransactions, but it doesn't appear to bother him at all.

There is a huge difference, because, while Clash of Clans is aimed at getting money, but it's not as horrible as Dungeon Keeper.
I actually tried it.
It actually works in CoC because it starts out fast and lets you build all the basics in a short time. It takes longer after that, but the timecost only gradually increases.
Trying to build larger buildings takes a lot of time, but the main action of the game is raiding other players not building buildings.
And recruiting troops is fast enough so that you can pop and and do a few raids in a short time.

Pure unadulterated greed, disgusting just disgusting.

its getting ridiculous that it happens so often nowdays for companies to use names of completely unrelated products to name something completely different that has no relation with that other product.

Wow! Five stars on Google Bullshit when you only let people vote 5 stars! That's amazing! Let me just check Metacritic and see what the user ratings have to say...

Oh. Ohhh... Oh, my.

Zero.

I've never seen this before! Congradulations, EA, you pissed off Gamers so much that you drove your Metacritic score down to ZERO! Do you realize what an accomplishment that is?

You're off to a great start, EA! At this rate, your third year as Worst Company in America is all but assured. I sure hope all the other shit companies out there are paying you under the table to lock it down this hard.

This isn't Dungeon Keeper. They used the name just to get people to play it. It's a shameful violation of a once great IP.

This is why everyone hates you, EA.

Haha, that Beeb article linked in the second update refers straight back him to our Jimothy's review! Nice to see it continuing to gain wider and wider attention. Still standing by your earlier comments, EA?

Steven Bogos:
"I felt myself turning round saying, 'What? This is ridiculous. I just want to make a dungeon. I don't want to schedule it on my alarm clock for six days to come back for a block to be chipped,'"

Peter molineux talking about senselessly chipping away at blocks for weeks.

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