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Is WFRP 3e being killed off?

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Good communication is expensive. Poor communication is worse (for FFG) than no communication. As it stands FFG tends to get in trouble for the information it does release, with people complaining about missed released dates and the like.

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 I think that there is no way to justify the "no communication" policy, sorry to be rude, but it is like this.

Lately I have been going around through different forums of other rpgs and I cannot believe how big the contrast is. As an example, in the One Ring forums, the designers of the game have even released a correction of the journeying rules due to discussions with the fans in the forums! (I think Emirikol posted it here).

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macd21 said:

Good communication is expensive. Poor communication is worse (for FFG) than no communication. As it stands FFG tends to get in trouble for the information it does release, with people complaining about missed released dates and the like.

 

I'm sorry, but this is just pure garbage. Neither is acceptable in any kind of business. You can tolerate failure to deliver - up to a point - as long as you're kept in the loop and know what's going on and why, but hearing nothing at all? No, completely and utterly unacceptable and a certain way to lose customers. We've cancelled orders and walked away from certain suppliers for precisely this reason.

Cheers

Sparrow 

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Yepesnopes said:

 

 I think that there is no way to justify the "no communication" policy, sorry to be rude, but it is like this.

Lately I have been going around through different forums of other rpgs and I cannot believe how big the contrast is. As an example, in the One Ring forums, the designers of the game have even released a correction of the journeying rules due to discussions with the fans in the forums! (I think Emirikol posted it here).

 

 

That's the thing though, they don't have a "no communication" policy, they simply don't have a "on customer demand" communication policy, or a "reply to forum posts" policy.  We know everything their is to know right now.  They are working on Enemy Within, its scheduled for release in Q4 2012.  That's all there is to know.  That's all that's happening.  If and when the game is discontinued, they will tell us.  If they have a new product to announce, they will announce it. 

My point is that I don't think its appropriate for a business to say "We might be discontinuing this product", or "We may or may not release X book that we are working on".  The hostility on the forums right now I personally think is totally uncalled for.  They have given us a great product and they have supported it.  If its the end of the line for it, than its the end of the line.  All products eventually die off, but as a consumer the only power we have to keep a product alive is with our wallets, you can't "forum post" your way into making a game economically successful.  Whatever happens to this game it will be the result of interest in it and if in fact the interest is low, than it makes perfect sense for them to focus on other projects and reduce their productivity on this one.  For now, Enemy Within is it, it may be the last product or it may not be.  Odds are since they haven't told us one way or the other is because they haven't decided one way or the other.

What kind of answer are you expecting from them?  I mean what do you think they haven't told us yet that they should?  Do people really expect that from speculation about the future of a product on the forums, that the company should come here and give us information like "We are waiting on economic results to decide wether or not to cancel the product line"…. Do you think that will be good for business?  

It seems logical to me that until they make their decesions, they shouldn't say anything, I wouldn't.

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BigKahuna said:

 

What kind of answer are you expecting from them?  I mean what do you think they haven't told us yet that they should?  Do people really expect that from speculation about the future of a product on the forums, that the company should come here and give us information like "We are waiting on economic results to decide wether or not to cancel the product line"…. Do you think that will be good for business?  

It seems logical to me that until they make their decesions, they shouldn't say anything, I wouldn't.

Your probably right, it may not be good for business. But silence is tantmount to saying the same thing, and I think most people would sooner deal with a company that was open and honest. And let's face it, silence has never been a very good PR policy because it feeds hostile speculation while it persists, and creates even greater resentment if negative facts subsequently emerge.

Cheer

Sparrows

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FFG is beneath the industry standard.  All other companies participate on their forums.  If they don't know or can't say somethign they say "we don't know or can't say."  THAT is the industry standard and what is known as "good" customer service.

 

The problem is that we are just little cash machines to them and they don't give a twinkle-turd about their customers on their forums. (I'm sure my eventual banning is on it's way, because I refuse to sit here an defend them for their choices, but we've put in time as fans and have written stuff for THEM for THEIR PRODUCT and they won't even say "hey, we support you guys, but we just don't have a product for you right now.").

 

They are defensless except for a couple of fans who feel the need to defend them.  Why can't they defend themselves?  Because they choose the path that allows people to think of them as uncaring, money-grubbing, giant-corporate elitists who are too good to lower themselves to communicating with their customers like "lesser" companies evidently "lower" themselves to.  Lesser companies like those indie companies such as WotC or Paizo…

 

It's really disgusting actually that they choose not to poke one single keystroke here since Jay Little left.

 

jh

~ Repeat this mantra after me:  "THEY DON'T CARE ENOUGH TO BOTHER."

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BigKahuna said:

 

That's the thing though, they don't have a "no communication" policy, they simply don't have a "on customer demand" communication policy, or a "reply to forum posts" policy.  We know everything their is to know right now.

Yes, and no. I don't expect them to reply to forum posts (though it would be nice, of course). I do expect, though, that they promote their product. They did not, however, give any interesting/ new tidbits of information on GenCon (which would have been the obvious time and place). And for weeks, the dice packs are out of stock. This diminishes the value of the product line, and as a business company, they should address that - and while they cannot offer the dice, they should reassure customers. By not saying anything, they are losing customers.

So, yes, we know everything there is to know right now. But that does not mean that FFG communication is just fine, because communicating is not just telling what there is to know, but also about staying in relationship (company-customer), kindling interest etc. Put bluntly, FFG seems focused on products, not customers. But ultimately, loyal customers are worth a lot more than cool products.

I like the product. But FFG has missed the chance to make me like them. That's disappointing, because it would have been so easy.

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Emirikol said:

FFG is beneath the industry standard.  All other companies participate on their forums.  If they don't know or can't say somethign they say "we don't know or can't say."  THAT is the industry standard and what is known as "good" customer service.

 

The problem is that we are just little cash machines to them and they don't give a twinkle-turd about their customers on their forums. (I'm sure my eventual banning is on it's way, because I refuse to sit here an defend them for their choices, but we've put in time as fans and have written stuff for THEM for THEIR PRODUCT and they won't even say "hey, we support you guys, but we just don't have a product for you right now.").

 

They are defensless except for a couple of fans who feel the need to defend them.  Why can't they defend themselves?  Because they choose the path that allows people to think of them as uncaring, money-grubbing, giant-corporate elitists who are too good to lower themselves to communicating with their customers like "lesser" companies evidently "lower" themselves to.  Lesser companies like those indie companies such as WotC or Paizo…

 

It's really disgusting actually that they choose not to poke one single keystroke here since Jay Little left.

 

jh

~ Repeat this mantra after me:  "THEY DON'T CARE ENOUGH TO BOTHER."

I suppose we will have to agree to disagree because I don't think that's true at all.  They don't really need a defense.  They announced the products they have to announce, they have given us the information about those products that their is to give and that's all there is.  FFG has a long standing action oriented support system which is 1000% better than what you get with most companies.  I mean the industry standard your talking about is to hype, make promises and boldly lie.  FFG simply doesn't do that.  They create release schedules and for the most part stick to them.  I have been buying games from FFG for years and to date they have never once disapointed me, I can't say that about any other company out there.  The fact that some nerdy developer isn't on the forums talking to the fans everyday hardly means they are "below standards" of other companies.  They make games and release them mostly likely based on a business model that works since they are after all one of the highest rated and most successful game publishers in the world.   

I guess what I'm saying is as long as they release awsome products, I don't really care if they talk to me.

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asri said:

BigKahuna said:

 

 

That's the thing though, they don't have a "no communication" policy, they simply don't have a "on customer demand" communication policy, or a "reply to forum posts" policy.  We know everything their is to know right now.

 

Yes, and no. I don't expect them to reply to forum posts (though it would be nice, of course). I do expect, though, that they promote their product. They did not, however, give any interesting/ new tidbits of information on GenCon (which would have been the obvious time and place). And for weeks, the dice packs are out of stock. This diminishes the value of the product line, and as a business company, they should address that - and while they cannot offer the dice, they should reassure customers. By not saying anything, they are losing customers.

So, yes, we know everything there is to know right now. But that does not mean that FFG communication is just fine, because communicating is not just telling what there is to know, but also about staying in relationship (company-customer), kindling interest etc. Put bluntly, FFG seems focused on products, not customers. But ultimately, loyal customers are worth a lot more than cool products.

I like the product. But FFG has missed the chance to make me like them. That's disappointing, because it would have been so easy.

Some companies talk the talk, FFG walks the walk.  They make games.  So they suck at talking to us.  Who cares!  As long as they make and release awsomes game, I love them.  I don't need to have Christian T. Petersons personal cell phone number for me to feel like they are responsive to me as a fan, I need him to make great games and release them and that's what he does.

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 Well either way, looks like the policy isn't likely to change. A

And the release pace has clearly slowed, although the epic and tew boxed sets of this year are actually two of the biggest from the line. 

I don't want to get a stress ulcer in the name of an RPG, lengua.gif so, I for one am shifting to expectation cruise control. Regardless of official news I'll be focusing on LF, the spoils from Jays compo, and the lively WFRP online virtual tabletop community, and dialing down frequency of visits the FFG.

 

Say NO to stress ulcers kids!

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BigKahuna said:

 

Some companies talk the talk, FFG walks the walk.  They make games.  So they suck at talking to us.  Who cares!  As long as they make and release awsomes game, I love them.  I don't need to have Christian T. Petersons personal cell phone number for me to feel like they are responsive to me as a fan, I need him to make great games and release them and that's what he does.

 

Well, quite clearly a number of people do care, otherwise we wouldn't have this and several other threads. And sure, it's great that FFG makes and releases awesome games, but the point is people don't know whether or not anything more is going to be made and released specifically for WFRP3, aside from a single product.

Cheers

Sparrow

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 And if they don't release any more after TEW, who cares. There's a lot of really good fan material out there (look at liber fanatica!), and its the system that makes wfrp 3 so good, not the 'official' releases, some of which are a bit average to be honest. Get people committed to writing good stuff, support it with lots of feedback and let rip. Cross reference with the first and second edition stuff and we've got it made. Bring it on.

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reg said:

 And if they don't release any more after TEW, who cares. There's a lot of really good fan material out there (look at liber fanatica!), and its the system that makes wfrp 3 so good, not the 'official' releases, some of which are a bit average to be honest. Get people committed to writing good stuff, support it with lots of feedback and let rip. Cross reference with the first and second edition stuff and we've got it made. Bring it on.

Again with the 'who cares?' question. As I said before, some of the people posting in this and other threads quite clearly care. I'm not that fussed myself, but I do empathise with people.

As for what makes WFRP3 so good, well, for me at least, what makes it good is the same thing that made WFRP1 and WFRP2: the setting. And the fans are already producing good stuff, and have been for years, but sadly it doesn't get as much feedback as perhaps it should.

Cheers

Sparrow

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I can't speak for anyone else but when I say "who cares", I'm kind of saying "no one should".  Another words their is nothing to be upset about because most of what we are talking about here are sort of grey area speculation reactions to other speculations and assumptions which aren't true at all nor are they supported by anything but more speculation.  

For example "FFG doesn't care about their customer", or that "We are just cash to them".  To me, that's being pretty harsh and unrealistic, FFG shows us they care by making great games, they don't have to make a personal phone call to a disgruntle forum poster to give the appearance of "caring" about their customers and to claim that if they don't speak up that their is some sort of speculative "failure" somewhere is obsurd and kind of offensive not just to FFG and the whole development team but to the fans that support them.  Its a sort of propoganda statement that tries to dehumanize a company as if it was some sort of evil corporation out to screw the consumer.  Nothing could be further from the truth, a fact supported by 2 decades of dedication to the development of games.  These guys run a business but its a business made of people who love games and they make them for other people who love games, their is no conspiracy here nor should their be any ill will towards FFG. Bringing this kind of speculation to the forum shows a lack of appriciation for the people who work hard to bring us great games.

This "what have you done for me lately" attitude being displayed on an otherwise great forum about a great role-playing game is weak status in my book. 

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 Kind of agree. 'Course it would be nice if they continued to release good products for wfrp, but 'who cares' means (to me) that I'll go on playing the game regardless. Make my own scenarios, cards, maps, steal others ideas, interact with others. It's the combination of a great system and committed fans that keep this going and lots of fun. As for the harsh things being said about FFG, well that's the inernet talking; a consequence of faceless instantaneous communication - they've got broad shoulders (and to be honest are not giving much feedback!).

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BigKahuna said:

 

I can't speak for anyone else but when I say "who cares", I'm kind of saying "no one should".  Another words their is nothing to be upset about because most of what we are talking about here are sort of grey area speculation reactions to other speculations and assumptions which aren't true at all nor are they supported by anything but more speculation.  

For example "FFG doesn't care about their customer", or that "We are just cash to them".  To me, that's being pretty harsh and unrealistic, FFG shows us they care by making great games, they don't have to make a personal phone call to a disgruntle forum poster to give the appearance of "caring" about their customers and to claim that if they don't speak up that their is some sort of speculative "failure" somewhere is obsurd and kind of offensive not just to FFG and the whole development team but to the fans that support them.  Its a sort of propoganda statement that tries to dehumanize a company as if it was some sort of evil corporation out to screw the consumer.  Nothing could be further from the truth, a fact supported by 2 decades of dedication to the development of games.  These guys run a business but its a business made of people who love games and they make them for other people who love games, their is no conspiracy here nor should their be any ill will towards FFG. Bringing this kind of speculation to the forum shows a lack of appriciation for the people who work hard to bring us great games.

This "what have you done for me lately" attitude being displayed on an otherwise great forum about a great role-playing game is weak status in my book. 

 

 

I can honestly say I care about WFRP but don't give a toss about FFG. As to producing great products I am afraid their record has been pretty hit and miss with WFRP. The core system was not playtested thoroughly enough, particularly at levels over Rank 1. In the case of the adventures, the Gathering Storm was perhaps the worst product ever produced under the WFRP banner, while Edge of Night was one of the best. I speak as somebody who has playtested for FFG, though I did not playtest the Core product or the Gathering Storm. I am afraid FFG's lack of communication skills can also be inferred from their lack of communication with some of their freelance writers. I am not sure that FFG does care about WFRP, because the products have been very hit and miss. I think it has proven to be a good test bed for the Star Wars RPG, nothing more

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This thread actually irritated me enough to register an account.

Long story short, I really disliked the earlier versions of Warhammer RPG. And yeah, I'm one of the many (usually silent) gamers who think D&D tabletop sucks, especially 3.5 and earlier. DnD should only be used for great PC games like Planescape, Baldur's Gate, and Mask of the Betrayer with all the mechanics handled by the PC. Why? In L5R or Trinity or Exalted the dice support your role-playing. In 3.5, you're playing a stylized version of Monopoly or Hero Quest. So count me surprised when WFRPG3 was actually making role-playing a heck of a lot easier with all these tools to avoid people rummaging through >400 pages of rules, and tons of smart system upgrades that make L5R or WW seem outdated.

So yeah, I'm fantastically happy with 3e. Being late to the party, I haven't had time to buy more than 4-5 of the boxes, but the cost is still the same as for an entire competitors gameline. So I'm more than happy with the 1-2 boxes a year policy. Do you really think it is economical for FFG to pump out huge boxes with tons of cards, cardboard, tokens, books and maps every other week? Really? I wouldn't buy that many, and I doubt they'd make a profit.

So of course the game isn't dying. And even if it was, the first thing I'd do is order ever single **** remaining box and as many dice sets I could find before it sold out.

A final note on the hateful attitude here: the grognards who are so antagonistic towards both new games and developers are the problem, not the solution, to the rpg industry fading. Heck, there are 10 million people playing World of Warcraft or probably even more doing free form role-playing on forums. But for some reason we haven't been able to drag more than a handful them into the hobby. For work I moved to a major international city outside of Sweden, and out of 30+ gamers I found, none were even female. But they all sure loved their Pathfinder and 2nd Edition WFRPG. And they sure hated the new systems.

It's as if people would refuse to buy new movies or video games and stick to what was made in 1982, but then look surprised when the creators went belly-up one by one until their industries died. Not exactly rocket science.

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Lumia said:

 

A final note on the hateful attitude here: the grognards who are so antagonistic towards both new games and developers are the problem, not the solution, to the rpg industry fading.

And so the Great History repeats itself once more… frustrated WFRP3 fans are cursed as Grognards, as disappointed WFRP2 fan were deemed Grognards before them, indeed as old and weary WFRP1 fans were damned to the land of Grog in the age before.

That's made my day aplauso.gif

Cheers

Sparrow

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asri said:

BigKahuna said:

 

 

That's the thing though, they don't have a "no communication" policy, they simply don't have a "on customer demand" communication policy, or a "reply to forum posts" policy.  We know everything their is to know right now.

 

Yes, and no. I don't expect them to reply to forum posts (though it would be nice, of course). I do expect, though, that they promote their product. They did not, however, give any interesting/ new tidbits of information on GenCon (which would have been the obvious time and place). And for weeks, the dice packs are out of stock. This diminishes the value of the product line, and as a business company, they should address that - and while they cannot offer the dice, they should reassure customers. By not saying anything, they are losing customers.

So, yes, we know everything there is to know right now. But that does not mean that FFG communication is just fine, because communicating is not just telling what there is to know, but also about staying in relationship (company-customer), kindling interest etc. Put bluntly, FFG seems focused on products, not customers. But ultimately, loyal customers are worth a lot more than cool products.

I like the product. But FFG has missed the chance to make me like them. That's disappointing, because it would have been so easy.

Sure, but (again): that kind of communication costs money to do well. Sure, most other RPG companies communicate more on the forums. Some of them (the bigger, more profitable ones) spend the money needed to do it well. Others just take the risk and wing it, hoping that it doesn't blow up in their faces. See the recent debacle at Redbrick games as an example of what happens when it does blow up in their faces. FFG have chosen to neither spend the money or take the risk of doing it on the cheap. Sure, it risks costing them customers, but I think the number who would stop buying their product over this would be minimal. But doing it on the cheap likewise risks costing them customers. Alternatively they could pay professionals to do the communication, but that would be very costly - you'd need people to cover each and every game line. That in turn would force them to up the cost of their product, which in turn would also lost them customers.

As for "loyal customers are worth more than cool products" - I agree. But I think that cool products result in loyal customers far more than chatting with customers on a net forum. Only a tiny minority of their customers actually read or post here. I think most don't really care or are even aware that there is a communication 'problem'.

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That's true for all companies however( companies only have a small number on their forums.)

FFG refuses to communicate with their customers via forum because they don't value their forum fans. 

All other companies encourage their fans on the forums. FFG is beneath industry standard and hence the problem.

 

jh

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Emirikol said:

FFG refuses to communicate with their customers via forum because they don't value their forum fans.

No, FFG refuses to communicate with their customers via forum because doing so has costs associated with it - either the cost of employing staff to deal with the forums properly or the costs incurred when someone lacking in communication skills screws up and ruins the company's rep.

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Mac, I respect you dude, but I have to disagree.

 

WHat cost?  How much does it cost for Daniel to post once a month, "I'm lurking here, and won't always respond, but we support you guys."  In fact, that's all we're asking.

 

According to my high-salary, typing this post cost about 42 cents.  If FFG can't pay their guys 42 cents more, maybe we've got a bigger problem here. I mean, literally, what kind of cheapass company do they have to be?  My guess is they're not cheapasses, they choose to ignore their forum fans and only consider us to be money on the table.

 

jh

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 Actually, Daniel answers me 95% of the times I ask him something related to the rules through the customer services thing, so probably there is indeed a policy of not participating in the forums.

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Emirikol said:

WHat cost?  How much does it cost for Daniel to post once a month, "I'm lurking here, and won't always respond, but we support you guys."  In fact, that's all we're asking.

I'm sorry, but that's rubbish. That is not at all what you are asking for. That would not at all satisfy those that are calling for more interaction on the forums. If that's all they got then they would demand more.

Proper, professional communication on the forums requires hiring someone to look through the threads to pick up on issues that they think should be addressed by staff. He needs to be familiar with the product and savvy enough to know what issues can be ignored and what ones should get a response. That person then needs to find out what the answer to any questions might be - he might be able to answer it himself, but odds are he'll need to discuss it with other staff members. Then he'll need to formulate a response - and not just the first thing that pops into his head. He needs to craft his post in such a way that it doesn't irritate or offend someone (you'd be surprised how easy it is to accidentally piss someone off). He then needs to track the forum response to what he's said and provide answers to follow-up questions.

Now multiply that across multiple threads and across multiple products. Remember we aren't just talking about WFRP here, they'd need to do it for all of their RPG lines at the very least and probably the other games as well (lest other fans get annoyed at the special treatment the RPGs are getting). And you need to do that everyday.

Some RPG companies go to the trouble of setting this up. Others (as mentioned) just wing it - they tell their staff to feel free to partake of the forums on their own time. Sometimes that works out fine, other times you get problems (again, see what happened at Redbrick). FFG don't want to spend the money to deal with it properly and don't want to risk letting their unskilled staff out into the forum wilderness. Personally I'm happy they aren't paying someone to do the job, as it means ever-so-slightly cheaper product for us. And I couldn't care less about their participation on the forums - I don't really see the value in it. The only information I want from the company is already provided - product descriptions and release dates.

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Well, even if posting on the forums is not something they want to do, then publishing a long-term road map like they did at the start would be greatly appreciated. This could be vague, but it would at least show their customers that they are working on *something* in the wfrp line. Currently, they are about as forthcoming about their plans as a secret service.

Imagine Apple cultists would not be out-of-the-loop about the next Apple product (they usually are, it's part of the ritual), but would in fact not know if Apple was even producing new devices at all. For all they knew. Apple might have stopped making hardware.

I see the apocalyptic scene before me… mayhem, chaos, and confused the-end-is-near prophets outside the iHeadquarters!

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