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  1. #1
    Community Member Maelodic's Avatar
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    Default The Forum Community Breakdown

    Hey guys!

    Long time lurker here. Most of my posts are asking for help in building or helping somebody to build.
    I do however, read most of your posts, especially here in the general section where a lot of newer players lurk.

    While I am of the opinion that the DDO community as a whole is full of helpful, kind, and level-headed people, the forum community does not show this- I am of the firm belief that the posts in the forum community have driven off far more players than anything else before they even try the game. In the spirit of bringing people in to play this game (I do not need to explain why that would be good for DDO as a whole) I am writing out my perspective on how the forums currently operate, and changes that we can make as a community to create a far more enjoyable experience for everyone. I will make an attempt to organize my data so that it's more readable.

    What I will outline are issues that are unique to DDO because of the very unique community DDO has.

    Most DDO fourmites are intelligent and(/or) articulate

    This is good because...
    The DDO community is used to playing this game where min-maxing is an exact science and builds can be creative, and usually are. When building, people band together to both help the people who need assistance, and release their creations for critique or praise. The building community is generally non-toxic, and is a pretty accurate representation of how the community behaves privately or while in-game. Outliers are always there, of course, however when the normal toxicity that you find on a regular basis in most MMOs is an outlier here, that's a pretty good sign that the community is fun to be around. My experience as a new player was fantastic because everybody that I came across was willing to help me in some way. Party leaders bought guest passes, somebody spent 50k plat on me just buying me the basic suite of potions or giving advise, etc. The funeral of Gary was a very good example of how this community can bind together to do something amazing, and how most players are generally kind hearted people.

    This is also good because the DDO community provides a lot of very good, well-rounded feedback. DDO players often take the time to test something and provide a large amount of insightful feedback based their experiences, and are generally good at doing so.

    This has negative effects because...
    Most people on the forums have an opinion about something or another. Because they are intelligent and articulate, they are able to type this out in a manner that generally will make sense. However, whenever they find something negative about the game or feel entitled to something, or feel like something absolutely needs to be changed or their voice needs to heard or something along those lines, they are very good at typing this out in a way that, to new players, looks like something legitimately wrong with the game that they would also not appreciate.
    Sometimes it is, but when you read the forums before playing a game or just start the game and read the forums and there are hundreds of threads like this, your motivation to play is going to be greatly reduced.
    Arguments are full blown debates, with references and articles and dev posts and everything along those lines. The forum community is so disjointed from one another, and the majority of these arguments are done in a very public forum- the general discussion forums, which is in turn the first or second forum that new, free to play players, read.
    If I had just read the forums, and had not played the game at all, it would be very easy to come to the conclusion that Turbine is similar to the very worst kind of Bond villains, this game contains nothing more than bugs and broken horrible things, and that the player-base all hate each other and are extremely upset with everything.

    A recommend fix...
    Move the toxicity and argument out of the Free Player forums. I'm not naive enough to suggest that the discussions stop (really, all they are is heated debates) but I will suggest that we as a forum move these discussions and complaints away from a section that players will go to immediately. I know that you want it to be seen by as many as can see it, but for the sake of the longevity of this game, please consider quelling your desire for your opinion to receive as much attention as possible and posting this in the suggestions forum.

    DDO fourmites are (usually) active players and still enjoy playing DDO

    This is good because...
    Let's face it, you still play DDO. You're reading the forums because you play DDO. You enjoy your time playing DDO or you would have to be masochistic playing it. You want to see the game grow and get better- you've most likely enjoyed the game for a long time. That's great. You have ideas to help the game out, you have feedback and you are always looking for improvements or things that can be fixed. You post here because you care. If you didn't care, why would you post? Why would you take a long time to write out everything that's wrong with the game or provide feedback or complain if you didn't care about the game? If you didn't want the game to improve?
    The truth of the matter is, you care about the game, and the guy who is posting above you most likely does too.

    This has negative effects because...
    You feel entitled to change. Or something.
    Why are you suggesting a change? Because you want it to happen.
    Why are you complaining? Because you want it fixed.
    Is there any other reason why you'd complain? For attention, but that's really a personal problem.
    People have opinions, and they share them. In an intelligent way. Disagreeing isn't bad, it's normal.

    There's nothing wrong with making a suggestion or a complaint. Filling up the general area with these can and will scare off new players.

    A recommend fix...
    Open letter to Turbine? Send them a letter. Send them a physical letter. It will get more attention from Turbine.
    Want something to be discussed? There is a suggestions section.
    Want to drive people away from the game? Have a complaint you just want everybody to see? Doing it right already.


    In closing
    We always complain about the failures of Turbine. I won't get into that, this isn't a Turbine bashing thread. This is about the community and how we as a community can work to improve it. Normally I'm not up in arms, because most communities I have been a part of have been terrible. In this community, I was shocked by the maturity and overall kindness of it, mostly in-game and in the "HEY LET'S BUILD TOONS" section of the forum. I hate to see so many people so off-put by the forum atmosphere, and I would love to help improve it.
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  2. #2
    Community Member Deathdefy's Avatar
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    Genuinely good suggestion.

    We should hide our shame better. I know I for one don't consider how my posts, particularly in heated discussions, would be perceived by people not already playing.
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  3. #3
    Community Member Ungood's Avatar
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    People express their views on the forums, because they want other people to read it, your suggestion to try and sweep negativity under the rug is a bad one, in my feelings. Turbine needs to step up, and be more active in their forum community as opposed to just thinking if they try to suppress it, that will work. It won't.

    In the end, if a new player comes to this forums and see that this game has problems, then like it or not, the reality is, the game has problems, lets not sugar coat that.

  4. #4
    Community Member Maelodic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ungood View Post
    People express their views on the forums, because they want other people to read it, your suggestion to try and sweep negativity under the rug is a bad one, in my feelings. Turbine needs to step up, and be more active in their forum community as opposed to just thinking if they try to suppress it, that will work. It won't.

    In the end, if a new player comes to this forums and see that this game has problems, then like it or not, the reality is, the game has problems, lets not sugar coat that.
    I'm not saying sweep it under the rug.
    I'm saying display it in a place where people who understand it will read it, don't shove it in the faces of newer or less experienced players. Don't upset them by proxy. If they're going to get upset at something, let them find and experience it, and then provide solid feedback. So many threads are based on other threads because they got upset because this player said this and they realized that they don't like what that player doesn't like and so they in turn make a thread about it when half of the time they haven't even experienced the issue but they're upset because of the idea.

    Negativity in general is only good for Pale Masters. Everybody is always so public. Why? If it's not a problem with somebody, it can easily become one if you position it good enough.
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  5. #5
    Community Member Chaimberland's Avatar
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    A very valid, well thought out & written suggestion. I agree 100%. Why on earth would somebody interested in playing ddo every try it out if they read the forums first? I know I wouldn't. Luckily for me, I played at least a year before looking at the forums. And thank goodness I did! I love the game and its mechanics and most of the people playing it. I think overall Turbine does a good job with it. You would never get that impression by reading the forums first.

    My advice to new players: Play the game and give it a real chance before coming to your own conclusion. The forum community is actually a very small percentage of the people playing the game.

  6. #6
    Community Member Ungood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelodic View Post
    I'm not saying sweep it under the rug.
    I'm saying display it in a place where people who understand it will read it, don't shove it in the faces of newer or less experienced players. Don't upset them by proxy. If they're going to get upset at something, let them find and experience it, and then provide solid feedback. So many threads are based on other threads because they got upset because this player said this and they realized that they don't like what that player doesn't like and so they in turn make a thread about it when half of the time they haven't even experienced the issue but they're upset because of the idea.

    Negativity in general is only good for Pale Masters. Everybody is always so public. Why? If it's not a problem with somebody, it can easily become one if you position it good enough.
    I am sorry but no. Remember back when Fort would go away of you lost being centered, and needed to re-equip your item? Maybe you did, maybe you didn't, maybe you just did not play monks, who knows, but that does not change that Turbine made a bad mistake with that, that players would be hurt by what they did, and it devalued the game to everyone that had monk levels on their character. When a new player comes to game wondering why they are getting hit by a crit and then reads a series of posts by players telling them what is wrong, and how Turbine pretty much left to them to the dogs and shafted their character for the interim, do you think by some means they will feel better abut that, then to read a post in General discussions about how losing center removes fort?

    In fact , I find it best that new players should not need to "suffer" in game, and then be told either in a polite way by helpful players or even being mocking way by jaded players, that it was broken, not working right, or just pretty much shafts them over and makes the game less enjoyable, because it leaves them wondering what else is wrong.

    While I am not a fan of some of the antics and actions players take in this forum, and to be honest, GW2, made it so that your forum handle also listed your toons, and server, so, people knew who you were in game when you posted on their forums (it also cost money to get an account, so that stopped the trolling style of spammers that DDO has) which, should be rather amusing, that DDO, is not trolled that much these day, very minimal for what would be an ideal breeding ground, free accounts and no accountability. I don;t feel that trying to hide things is the right thing to do.

    I think Turbine needs to own up and get more into the trenches with their players, and communicate, which will make new players see that they care about their own game, and want to be a part of it.

  7. #7
    Community Member Maelodic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ungood View Post
    ~
    There was a bug. The bug was resolved. Was the bug listed in Known Issues? Did Turbine say they were aware of the bug and were going to fix it? Was there any announcement?
    If no to any of those questions, yes Turbine did not do well there.

    Select the proper response:
    -Badmouth Turbine and curse up a storm in how they handle the bug and make sure everybody knows how upset you are, and how horrible Turbine is at handling bugs.
    -Wait for the bug to be fixed. Because it's obvious this is making the game rough for a lot of players, but there is a work around, so they need to debug it slow enough not to create more bugs. (If they failed to do one of those things, make a suggestion for them to do so.)

    It is not your job to tell everybody you know about it and how horrible it is and how horrible Turbine is. If somebody is not aware of the bug, you can make them aware. Anything extra is fluff. It is how it is.

    Honestly, at the moment you are proving my point. If you hate the company so much, why are you still playing their game?
    Last edited by Maelodic; 10-24-2013 at 11:47 AM.
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  8. #8
    Community Member rest's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelodic View Post
    It is not your job to tell everybody you know about it and how horrible it is and how horrible Turbine is.
    By the same token, it's not your job to protect the soft white underbellies of all the new players who could possibly be turned away by perceived negativity.

  9. #9
    Community Member Maelodic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rest View Post
    By the same token, it's not your job to protect the soft white underbellies of all the new players who could possibly be turned away by perceived negativity.
    Touche.

    This thread is ironically hypocritical. I hope my intentions are clear, however.
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    Praise Dog, and Maelodic, his prophet.

  10. #10
    Community Member Ungood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelodic View Post
    There was a bug. The bug was resolved. Was the bug listed in Known Issues? Did Turbine say they were aware of the bug and were going to fix it? Was there any announcement?
    If no to any of those questions, yes Turbine did not do well there.
    The answer was No to all those questions, and the answer was No to the issues with players losing their spell power, and heal amp, and also with people getting stuck in walls, and, well I hope you get the idea by now.

    Select the proper response:
    And the correct Answer is:

    Talk about it openly on the main forums, so that other players know there is an issue, and if there is a work around or means to avoid it, or how long it's been so they get an idea of if they can expect this to be fixed soon, or not at all (like the ladder bug).

    Give the info to everyone as much as you can so that your fellow players can adapt to it, know what it going on, and realize that it is not them.

  11. #11
    Community Member Chai's Avatar
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    New players not playing is not a direct symptom of forumite negativity - as forumite negativity is a direct symptom of the real issue - unpopular changes made to the game. If they want new players, stop making unpopular changes to the game.
    Advocating repeated nerfs in the name of "balancing the game" then complaining about how DDO is moving away from D&D, is a direct contradiction in logic - D&D 3.5 (what DDO is based on) is not a balanced game. We can either have a balanced clone MMO with homogenized classes, or we can have a D&D game. We cant have both.

  12. #12
    Community Member HernandoCortez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ungood View Post
    I think Turbine needs to own up and get more into the trenches with their players, and communicate, which will make new players see that they care about their own game, and want to be a part of it.
    UTOPIA. Pure and simple.
    Some of them act like they're MMO demigods. They act like they know what's good for their product and we don't, like we're spoiled children. Their ideas are just "brilliant" and we're stupid not to see it that way. If the unrest is small they just hide the complaints under the carpet and shoo us away. If its big and it gets other site's attention they buy themselves some time in the hopes people will just forget about it.

    This lack of respect just made more and more people bitter at them. Just see how many negative threads we get everyday. But no, they don't need to change their arrogant attitude.
    In the end, they're into a no-win situation but they're oblivious to it.

    We've seen a lot of people cancelling their subscriptions, people leaving the game, bad press about DDO and they're still comfortable enough in their Ivory Tower.
    History has shown even governments fell because of that. I hope when they finally realise what they are doing with this game theres still time to save it.
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  13. #13
    Community Member Maelodic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ungood View Post
    The answer was No to all those questions, and the answer was No to the issues with players losing their spell power, and heal amp, and also with people getting stuck in walls, and, well I hope you get the idea by now.



    And the correct Answer is:

    Talk about it openly on the main forums, so that other players know there is an issue, and if there is a work around or means to avoid it, or how long it's been so they get an idea of if they can expect this to be fixed soon, or not at all (like the ladder bug).

    Give the info to everyone as much as you can so that your fellow players can adapt to it, know what it going on, and realize that it is not them.
    I'm not sure you quite understand what I'm targeting.
    I'm not saying don't help players with workaround and hide all the bugs and make sure everything buggy is shush shush.

    I'm talking about the massive amount of "Fed up" threads or "I'm tired of this game" or "turbine sucks because x" threads. "Look, another failure by Turbine" "Everybody is so incompetent." "I'm quitting"

    The game is bashed on daily by hundreds of replies to dozens of threads. Then they start bashing on each other. And then Turbine again. And then each other. There is no point to this, and all it does is make everybody hate each other and causes any kind of newer bystanders to be completely off-put by both the community and the game.

    Do you really want Turbine to spend their time sifting through the incredibly large library of massive amounts of posts in regards to them, most of which are just telling them how horrible they are?
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  14. #14
    Community Member TBot1234's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelodic View Post
    I'm talking about the massive amount of "Fed up" threads or "I'm tired of this game" or "turbine sucks because x" threads. "Look, another failure by Turbine" "Everybody is so incompetent." "I'm quitting"

    Do you really want Turbine to spend their time sifting through the incredibly large library of massive amounts of posts in regards to them, most of which are just telling them how horrible they are?
    My perspective: these forums have had negative posts since I joined this game in October 2009 (my 4-year anniversary, yay!). Then "can I haz yur stuff?" comments are not new; people have threatened to quit because of perceived Turbine failures for a long time.

    It seems to me the negativity spikes around certain key events, and then recedes. There have also been a few moments of true exuberance when the community comes together and gets excited about something new.

    I understand your point about how seeing all of these negative threads could turn new people away. If I went to a website and saw many negative reviews about a hotel, I would be somewhat hesitant to book a stay there. Lately though, I've realized that there will always be negative reviews about even 5-star hotels and resorts, because some people will always find problems (often legitimately) and post about them vehemently.

    I am thankful that most new players probably don't visit the forums right away. And I agree that some of the negativity should be be toned down. You still get posts like that one the other day that was well-written, polite, and well-received.

    But, for up-to-date information on the game, the forums and the wiki are the go-to places. It's pretty difficult to have good info and people raising issues without some folks being upset.

    "Where is the love?" It's there, but sometimes it's hard to see.
    "So maybe it's about time we all get a reality check and realize that if you raid, run epics, and have capped toons and worry about ED's TR's and all that jazz, you are a small part of the population of this game, a very small part in fact." -- Ungood

  15. #15
    Community Member Luxgolg's Avatar
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    This is not the first time this topic has come up...

    https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthrea...ion-is-awesome

  16. #16
    Community Member bsquishwizzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelodic View Post
    Hey guys!

    Long time lurker here. Most of my posts are asking for help in building or helping somebody to build.
    I do however, read most of your posts, especially here in the general section where a lot of newer players lurk.

    While I am of the opinion that the DDO community as a whole is full of helpful, kind, and level-headed people, the forum community does not show this- I am of the firm belief that the posts in the forum community have driven off far more players than anything else before they even try the game. In the spirit of bringing people in to play this game (I do not need to explain why that would be good for DDO as a whole) I am writing out my perspective on how the forums currently operate, and changes that we can make as a community to create a far more enjoyable experience for everyone. I will make an attempt to organize my data so that it's more readable.

    What I will outline are issues that are unique to DDO because of the very unique community DDO has.

    Most DDO fourmites are intelligent and(/or) articulate

    This is good because...
    The DDO community is used to playing this game where min-maxing is an exact science and builds can be creative, and usually are. When building, people band together to both help the people who need assistance, and release their creations for critique or praise. The building community is generally non-toxic, and is a pretty accurate representation of how the community behaves privately or while in-game. Outliers are always there, of course, however when the normal toxicity that you find on a regular basis in most MMOs is an outlier here, that's a pretty good sign that the community is fun to be around. My experience as a new player was fantastic because everybody that I came across was willing to help me in some way. Party leaders bought guest passes, somebody spent 50k plat on me just buying me the basic suite of potions or giving advise, etc. The funeral of Gary was a very good example of how this community can bind together to do something amazing, and how most players are generally kind hearted people.

    This is also good because the DDO community provides a lot of very good, well-rounded feedback. DDO players often take the time to test something and provide a large amount of insightful feedback based their experiences, and are generally good at doing so.

    This has negative effects because...
    Most people on the forums have an opinion about something or another. Because they are intelligent and articulate, they are able to type this out in a manner that generally will make sense. However, whenever they find something negative about the game or feel entitled to something, or feel like something absolutely needs to be changed or their voice needs to heard or something along those lines, they are very good at typing this out in a way that, to new players, looks like something legitimately wrong with the game that they would also not appreciate.
    Sometimes it is, but when you read the forums before playing a game or just start the game and read the forums and there are hundreds of threads like this, your motivation to play is going to be greatly reduced.
    Arguments are full blown debates, with references and articles and dev posts and everything along those lines. The forum community is so disjointed from one another, and the majority of these arguments are done in a very public forum- the general discussion forums, which is in turn the first or second forum that new, free to play players, read.
    If I had just read the forums, and had not played the game at all, it would be very easy to come to the conclusion that Turbine is similar to the very worst kind of Bond villains, this game contains nothing more than bugs and broken horrible things, and that the player-base all hate each other and are extremely upset with everything.

    A recommend fix...
    Move the toxicity and argument out of the Free Player forums. I'm not naive enough to suggest that the discussions stop (really, all they are is heated debates) but I will suggest that we as a forum move these discussions and complaints away from a section that players will go to immediately. I know that you want it to be seen by as many as can see it, but for the sake of the longevity of this game, please consider quelling your desire for your opinion to receive as much attention as possible and posting this in the suggestions forum.

    DDO fourmites are (usually) active players and still enjoy playing DDO

    This is good because...
    Let's face it, you still play DDO. You're reading the forums because you play DDO. You enjoy your time playing DDO or you would have to be masochistic playing it. You want to see the game grow and get better- you've most likely enjoyed the game for a long time. That's great. You have ideas to help the game out, you have feedback and you are always looking for improvements or things that can be fixed. You post here because you care. If you didn't care, why would you post? Why would you take a long time to write out everything that's wrong with the game or provide feedback or complain if you didn't care about the game? If you didn't want the game to improve?
    The truth of the matter is, you care about the game, and the guy who is posting above you most likely does too.

    This has negative effects because...
    You feel entitled to change. Or something.
    Why are you suggesting a change? Because you want it to happen.
    Why are you complaining? Because you want it fixed.
    Is there any other reason why you'd complain? For attention, but that's really a personal problem.
    People have opinions, and they share them. In an intelligent way. Disagreeing isn't bad, it's normal.

    There's nothing wrong with making a suggestion or a complaint. Filling up the general area with these can and will scare off new players.

    A recommend fix...
    Open letter to Turbine? Send them a letter. Send them a physical letter. It will get more attention from Turbine.
    Want something to be discussed? There is a suggestions section.
    Want to drive people away from the game? Have a complaint you just want everybody to see? Doing it right already.


    In closing
    We always complain about the failures of Turbine. I won't get into that, this isn't a Turbine bashing thread. This is about the community and how we as a community can work to improve it. Normally I'm not up in arms, because most communities I have been a part of have been terrible. In this community, I was shocked by the maturity and overall kindness of it, mostly in-game and in the "HEY LET'S BUILD TOONS" section of the forum. I hate to see so many people so off-put by the forum atmosphere, and I would love to help improve it.

    You know, while this all seems nice and fine, the reality is that civility in this day and age nets you next-to-nothing. An open letter to Turbine can be twice as easily ignored as continuous form posts.

    And the second issue is that, for the most part, this uncivil modus operandi is pretty commonplace in most hobby forums.

    Plus, I can see why some people get bent out of shape suggesting fixes to the same frickin’ bugs over the course of years. Shroud STILL has broken mechanics in it that date back before I even played. Has Turbine known about it? Yep. Have they done anything about it? Pffth! You want to sit there and tell me that a proliferation of bugs that remain untouched are actually good for the game? I don’t think so Tim…

    So, you only real outlet is to post drama on the forums.

    This whole civility thing is a two-way street. If Turbine made a visible, tangible effort to let their long-term customers know that they appreciated their input, suggestions, and comments you wouldn’t be posting what you have. As you pointed out, the majority people who post here are not dumb, and they know when they are being sold a crop of ****. And you can only have that happen to you so many times before you start to let everything hang out.

  17. #17
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    Well worded, logical, and obviously given some thought.


    Therefore, it will be summarily ignored or ridiculed.


    Be prepared to get labeled a "fanboi".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chaimberland View Post
    Why on earth would somebody interested in playing ddo every try it out if they read the forums first?

    I think that this is a perfectly valid question, but for an entirely different reason. Why shouldn't potential new players be given all the facts prior to committing time, energy and money into a game with such a high degree of dissatisfaction?

    Censorship is wrong.

  19. #19
    Community Member bartharok's Avatar
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    Me, i got to admit that if i ever top playing DDo for anything but RL reasons, i think the forums are going to be it. I quite often leave them with a foul taste in my mouth. (Not saying that im not the one putting it there at times)
    Dystopia = utopia achieved

  20. #20
    Community Member Arnhelm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Denver, CO, USA
    Posts
    2,272

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    These forums should most always be taken with a grain of salt...

    Followed quickly thereafter with a shot of tequila and a wedge of lime.
    There is no free lunch.

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